Dear First Church Friends and Family,

2017 has been an exciting year of ministry including:
-Completion of lobby renovations, Kids Central entrance, Coffee Shop, and sanctuary renovations!
-Sermon series such as “Let Everything That Has Breath” with special Bridge alumni reunion, “Here I Am” from Isaiah 6 with sermon-based small groups, “On the Job” and “Potter’s Clay” that included Scott Stearman’s live sculpting of the face of Jesus and original song by Mollie Beaver. “Potter’s Clay” is being transcribed into book form and should be available within a few months.
-Baptisms and new members.
-Faith Promise over $202,000 pledged, an interactive “Mission Experience,” PLUS eight missions trips planned between now and this time next year!
-2018 promises to be another year of meaningful ministry. We have a Clean Water 5K race, a Habitat for Humanity event held at our church, the eight missions trips mentioned above and more.

Prayerfully consider a year-end gift to First Church of the Nazarene. A year end gift will allow us to finish strong in 2017 and plan for a great 2018. Note that all payables including denominational budgets are current. In other words, any gift given will be only used for current and future ministry efforts!

You can make a donation by giving in our Sunday offerings, mailing a check to the church office, through electronic means at the church website or church app, or through non-cash gifts such as stocks.

Your gift funds a ministry that changes lives. Enjoy the photos above and stories to the right with reminders of the way lives are changed through God’s ministry at First Church.

Your Friend and Pastor

Dr. Brent Van Hook

Make your tax-deductible, year-end contribution today through our secure and convenient online giving option.

Truman’s Baptism

Truman teaches me daily how to love God with reckless abandon, how to do all things with joy and passion. He sees only possibilities and not boundaries or limits. If you know him at all, even by reputation, you know that literally, he does NOT “get” boundaries or limits. His family nickname is Wildcard.

Obviously, as a parent, this is challenging and scary. I want him to be safe. I don’t want him to be hurt, physically or emotionally.

Every baptism Sunday for over a year, Truman had been asking his dad and me if he could be baptized. I’m not going to lie. I was hesitant. I kept telling myself that I wanted to make sure he really understood what baptism represents, but if I am gut-wrenchingly honest with myself, I knew that when he was baptized, he would do it in true Truman style: no boundaries, full-out, happy dance included.

Branden accepted this as he always does, with his quiet assurance and faith that it would all work out, and I, in my typical fashion, did not. I worried that he would get hurt. That people might assume because he is Truman with all his wildcard-ways, his baptism would be cute and sweet, but not a “real” baptism. Or worse, that his baptism was something that his dad and I had chosen for him as opposed to something he had passionately and confidently chosen for himself.

I was scared. I only saw the boundaries and the limits. Not for the first time regarding Truman’s faith walk, I felt almost audibly, lovingly chastised by God, “Stop. Just stop. Do not stand in the way of my son. Let him come to Me. Trust in Me,” and not for the first time in Truman’s faith walk, I received the oh-so humbling blessing and admonishment of my son’s reckless, limitless, joyful obedience and the pure love and support of his family, our church family, wrap around us and rejoice with us.

When I asked Tru why he wanted to be baptized, he told me, “Because I love God, and I want to show Him.” It was that simple. It IS that simple, and limitless, and hopeful, and transformative, and joyous to love God, and show Him that we love Him!

Beverly Hall (Mom of Truman, Tessa, Brenna, and Elinor)