WHY SECURITY SHOULD BE ON EVERY CHURCH'S RADAR

With the recent tragedy that took place last Sunday in Southern Springs, Texas, it poses a very important question: Are we prepared for this same possibility at Deer Flat? Probably like me, you sat and wondered, “How does something like that happen?  And, How could it ever happen here?  I think you agree with me that the Church should be a place of safety.  Safety isn’t something that just happens.  It happens because intentional measures have been taken to provide a real place of safety.  We have been very intentional about this issue at Deer Flat Church.  This has also been heavily factored in to the current building project.  Let me give you a bit of an overview about the plan and function of the Security team at Deer Flat.

About 5 years ago we began to take a hard look at the policies and procedures we had in place in regards to safety and security.  Although we had made many changes up to that point, we fell short in many areas.  We had been fortunate to not have any serious incidents, but with our growing size, location and a changing world we determined it was time for action.

We begin to identify and analyze our weaknesses, voids and opportunities.  We determined that we needed several things including:

1.       A better check-in system for our children

2.       Improved and broadened background check requirements for child/youth workers

3.       A more secure facility

4.       A safety/security team

5.       An emergency plan

As a result we begin to implement changes almost immediately and have made the following changes:

1.       Installed electronic check-in for children/youth with security name tags

2.       Installed 16 video cameras to monitor facility

3.       Limited entry points into building

4.       Installed locks and safety glass on all classroom doors

5.       Created a security team

          a.       Church divided into zones

          b.       Person at control center and monitors

          c.       Ongoing training

          d.       Radio communications

6.       Created a medical team

7.       Developed a complete emergency plan

Our new children’s wing will have additional cameras, inaccessible windows, intercoms and only one entry point to maintain a safe and secure area for our children.

There are many camps of thought on church security from very casual to militant.  We have chosen to take a position of prevention and preparedness.  Our primary goals are to make sure we have not “left the front door open”, be a visual presence to our people as well as any that might intend harm and have a plan if something happens.  We will continue to make improvements, grow our teams and do relevant training to ensure your safety and security.

We have some great, dedicated people on our team and I am very grateful for them all.  If you have an interest in being a part of the security or medical team, please contact me at rickday@deerflat.org or 208-459-3845.

WHY IS EVERYONE SO CAUGHT UP IN THE AVENGERS?

WHY IS EVERYONE SO CAUGHT UP IN THE AVENGERS?

Ever since the Avengers swooped into theaters and helped rescue Hollywood's year with a gargantuan $1.39 billion haul, the prospect of further superhero ensemble movies has been pretty inevitable. Warner Bros has rolled out their Justice League movie starring Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman, followed by their Wonder Woman movie. Iron Man, Thor, the Hulk, Captain America and others are not only on the Big Screen, but now they’re on cereal boxes, T shirts, advertisements, books, and more.  Why is that?  Why all the hype?  Why all the draw?

It’s an interesting thing to look at. Stan Lee has defined a superhero as: a person who does heroic deeds and has the ability to do them in a way that a normal person couldn’t. So in order to be a superhero, you need a power that is more exceptional than any power a normal human being could possess, and you need to use that power to accomplish good deeds.

 Do you see what I see in that statement?  There is a longing for a supernatural power that is used for good.  A power that sets the person apart.  A power that draws attention.  Look at what one of my favorite theologians says about this:  

"All men kinda think of themselves like low-level super-heroes in their own world.  I'm not even supposed to be telling you this.  But when men are growing up and are reading about Batman, Spiderman, Superman... these aren't fantasies.  These are options.  This is the deep inner secret truth of the male mind." - Jerry Seinfeld

Not long ago I came across an article by Joe Thomas, entitled “The 5 Reasons We Love Super Hero’s”  In that article he lists some very interesting reasons, but it was the last one he listed that really caught my attention.  Take a look at it…

“The most important one, and I think one of the reasons superheroes exist. To give hope.” (Do you see that?)” To give hope that no matter what the odds are, people are inherently good. That one person can make a difference. That even with no superhuman powers, one person can make a difference. That having powers doesn't automatically make you better than anyone. The fact is, that's why I love them. Because I get inspired by them, they give me hope. To never give up, even when the task seems daunting. In the end, that's what we all want right? The hope that anything can happen. That maybe one day a ship from another planet crashes carrying a child from another world.” (Did you hear that?)  “That we can work together and make the world, hell anywhere, a better place. Superheroes aren't a pipe dream, a waste of time. They are so much more. They are a constantly evolving heartbeat, something we and I, hold so dear to us, because it allows us to believe again.”

A professor from BYU who has been studying this phenomenon says,

 “Superheroes represent hope and we are, for the most part, hopeful people.  They explain mystery.  They model behavior.  They inspire.  They make mistakes and they learn from them.  They are life lessons.”

 So, where am I going with this?  Just a couple of quick things.

1)      There really is a longing in people’s hearts for the power of the supernatural to be at work bringing about good, defeating the kingdom of darkness, wickedness and evil.  You can see this in the few quotes that I’ve shared.  From eon’s of time back, man has been intrigued with mythological figures like Hercules, Zeus, Achillies, and others.  Who do you think put this longing in people’s hearts?

2)     There is no shortage of “super hero’s” listed in the Bible.  The Bible includes some amazing facts and stories about “hybrid” beings, men of renown, including DAVID’S MIGHTY MEN.  The greatest superhero of all is none other than Jesus.  He shows up in the story of David in some amazing ways.

Beginning this Sunday, and for the next 5 weeks, we’ll be taking a look at David and his Mighty Men.  We’ll also be meeting some modern Mighty Men and Women.  This is definitely a series you’ll not want to miss.  I’ve never done a study like this one.  This is one of those times you’re going to want to invite someone to come with you!  I can’t wait to see you! Come expecting an unforgettable day at Deer Flat.

Still Gripped By Jesus,

Pastor D

WHY IS THERE SUCH A HUGE INTEREST IN FINDING OUR ANCESTORS?

Time Magazine published an article back in May of 2014.  The Caption read, “HOW GENEALOGY BECAME ALMOST AS POPULAR AS PORN.”  Here’s what it said, “genealogy is the second most popular hobby in the U.S. after gardening, according to ABC News, and the second most visited category of websites, after pornography. It’s a billion-dollar industry that has spawned profitable websites, television shows, scores of books and — with the advent of over-the-counter genetic test kits — a cottage industry in DNA ancestry testing.

Maybe you are one of those people who has found much joy as you have learned about your ancestors.  It’s amazing who we are related to, what amazing things they did, and some of the surprising contributions they made.  One of the major ancestors that’s part of my own roots is Victor Hugo, writer of “Les Miserables” and “The Hunchback of Notre Dame.”

But, have you ever thought about your (our) spiritual roots?  Have you ever considered the Jewish Roots of our Christianity?  They are nothing short of amazing.  Unfortunately most people have no idea about them.  This is what Christianity was birthed out of.  We know it as Judaism.  It’s the religion of the Jews.  It was the practice of our own Messiah.  The simplest description is that the Jews, including Jesus, were Torah observant.  They followed the admonitions of the Torah – the first 5 Books of the Bible.  According to the Jewish calendar, the Jews just finished up the Fall Feasts and Festivals.

The final holy day is called, Simchot Torah, meaning “rejoicing in the Torah.”  It’s the time when the year long reading through the first five books of the Bible concludes, and the reading cycle of Genesis begins again.  On that day, they take the great Torah Scrolls from the cabinets of the synagogues.  The scroll (The Word of God) is robed in royal blue, it is crowned as though it were a king, it is held close, hugged, kissed, danced with, and read.  There is great rejoicing.  

I’m reminded of John’s words in his Gospel.  “In the beginning was the Word.  The Word was with God, and the Word was God…The Word became flesh and dwelt among us.”  Jn. 1

So, you can imagine the picture of The Word – Jesus – robed, crowned, hugged, kissed, danced with and rejoiced over.  This is a glimpse of our Jewish roots. If you haven’t realized it yet, Jesus is all over the Old Testament.  What an outstanding picture.  And, the Hebrew Scriptures are full of them.

I can’t wait to show you some amazing and mind blowing things as we begin a NEW SERIES, a week from this Sunday.  It’s a series about David’s Mighty Men – the other Band of Brothers!  Get ready for an amazing look at this season in the life of a guy that we’ve all come to love.  And, don’t forget, we were birthed out of all of this.  Isn’t God good!

One last thing… Jer has reminded me to be sure to let ALL THE WOMEN  know that she would love to have a coffee with them TOMORROW MORNING AT 9 A.M. IN THE LOBBY AT DEER FLAT.  I can promise you, it will be an outstanding time.  She will love on you and speak some amazing things into your lives.

Can’t wait to see you Sunday!  Come expecting an outstanding day.

Loving You and Him,

Pastor D

WEEKEND UPDATE

Tomorrow evening begins our HOPE FOR HURTING PEOPLE weekend.  You’ll definitely not want to miss Friday evening.  Ted and Gayle Haggard are our special guests for the conference.  Their story is both heart wrenching and powerful.  It was eleven years ago now that their world was forever changed.  In an instant they found themselves living in horrendous change.

They will speak both Friday evening and Saturday morning. THERE IS NO COST FOR FRIDAY EVENING – 7 PM. This would be one of those times that you should invite someone to come with you.  They will tell the story of how God brought amazing restoration out of their disaster.  It wasn’t without help.  God brought great people and resources into their lives and they both contributed heavily.  Add to that God’s redemptive heart and His willingness to get into our messes, and it makes for a very miraculous equation.

Because of the workshops taking place on Saturday, there is a cost of $25, but this is where you can tap into some tremendous people and resources.  Everything starts at 9 AM and will be wrapped up by 2:30 PM.  Lunch is included in the cost.  You can check it all out at www.deerflat.org.

Sunday – another great day at Deer Flat.  We continue in our series: CORE, where we get a chance to consider the core value of EQUIPPING.  I can’t wait to see you this weekend.  Don’t underestimate the power and influence of an invitation.  Remember, you are a difference maker!

All For Jesus,

Pastor D

SOME INFORMATION I THINK YOU'D LIKE TO KNOW

LIVING WITHOUT HOPE   I spend most every week of my life with people.  People are fantastic.  However, they can be challenging and frustrating. How can we help people who don’t want help? There’s nothing more fulfilling than feeling like you’ve been able to help  someone.  Nothing beats feeling like you’re making a difference with your life.  You encounter someone, begin to care, and find yourself moved to do something about the issue you just learned about.  Perhaps like me, you’ve listened to story after story of people who could do no less that get involved in the heartbreaking tragedies that happen.  The stories of people helping people are gripping, inspirational, and emotional.  Whether it’s Houston, Florida, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Las Vegas or the Treasure Valley, you see needs, hear heartache and want to do something about it.  Many times we can’t help people because they’re stubborn.  But there are other times that people just don’t have any hope things will ever change.

The amount of people living without hope is no small thing. Here’s what happens more times than we care to admit. You experience devastating defeats, a persistent situation that you couldn't change, or experienced a terrifying situation that you could not control your exposure to, then you may have lost hope for your ability to change your life or to change painful situations. Sometimes an ongoing mood disorder can lead to feelings of hopelessness.

Apathy or hopelessness may be puzzling to those around you. Why wouldn't you try to get a job, make friends, eat healthier, or leave someone who is abusive? When you have no hope, you see any efforts to change your life as futile. You may blame yourself. You might say that you cannot manage life, cannot make friends and cannot succeed in getting a job. You accept whatever happens as beyond your control. You may begin to despair. 

When you don’t have hope, you have no energy or motivation for therapy or for any effort to change your situation. What's the use in reaching out to meet people?  You are sure you will be rejected.  Why bother exercising or cleaning your home or volunteering--it won't really make a difference. You know you will always be lonely, depressed, anxious, unemployed, or stuck in the same situation that is making you miserable. You don't want to risk the pain of further disappointment by even trying.  Unfortunately, this painful despair and resignation sets up a self-fulfilling prophecy.

HOWEVER, this is where God does His best work.  One of God’s favorite hangouts is “Wits End.” God is still moved with compassion over His creation. So gripped over mankind’s situations that He writes Himself into His story of redemption.  He declares loudly,  “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Jer. 29:11

If you resonate with any of this, if you wish you could make a more significant difference in helping people, if you are living with hopelessness, then why not consider tapping into the HOPE FOR HURTING PEOPLE weekend?  Let me tell you about it.  October 13-14

Next Friday evening an outstanding couple who have experienced HUGE devastation and found themselves in a hopeless situation, will be sharing about how God raised them up and restored their lives and their future.  Ted and Gayle Haggard will share their story and the hope they found in the midst of their journey.  FRIDAY EVENING’S SESSION IS FREE!  On Saturday morning, they will speak again, and following the opening session there will be 12 different workshops available to take advantage of.

These workshops cover a wide spectrum of very important issues and situations.  The cost of Saturday is $25 per person, which includes lunch. You can find all of the information, and get signed up for the workshops at www.deerflat.org. This can be a life changing weekend for you, or for any of the friends, co-workers, neighbors, family members that you know are living with little or no hope.  Take the risk and reach out to them.  Share with them about this opportunity.  All of the workshops will be led by quality, seasoned experts in their field.  Resources will be available.  Hope will be dispensed.  Don’t miss this chance to help make a difference in someone’s life.

CORE VALUES – During the month of October, we’re taking the time to really look at the core values of Deer Flat.  We’re considering why they are important, what role they play in the church and its future, and what that means for us individually.  Last Sunday, we zeroed in on WORSHIP.  This Sunday we’ll be investigating CONNECTING. This will be really insightful and inspiring.  You’ll get a chance to see how important this is to Deer Flat.  An amazing Lord’s Day awaits you this Sunday.  I can’t wait to see you!

LOTS OF CONCRETE – While you’ve been away this week, there’s lots of concrete that has been put in its place.  Over 25,000 sq. ft. of cement is being put down to become the floor of the new addition.  The steel is scheduled to be delivered this coming week, and soon you’ll see the structure taking place.  THANK YOU FOR YOUR ONGOING FINANCIAL SUPPORT OF THIS BUILDING PROJECT!  You guys are amazing!  I’m so fortunate to be the pastor of such a tremendous congregation!

All For Jesus,

Pastor D

IT'S THE MOST HOLIEST DAY OF THE YEAR!

Yom Kippur begins this evening at sundown.  This is the holiest day of the year!  Get this, Leviticus 16:29-30  This is to be a lasting ordinance for you: On the tenth day of the seventh month you must deny yourselves and not do any work—whether native-born or a foreigner residing among youbecause on this day atonement will be made for you, to cleanse you. Then, before the Lord, you will be clean from all your sins.  Did you hear what you just read?

For nearly twenty-six hours—the Jews will eat no food and have no drink.  They will not wash or attire their bodies with anything nothing but simple – no lotions, cologne’s, or make up. There is to be no work.  The Israeli Airport will be shut down with no flights into or out of Israel. Their time will be spent at synagogue and in prayer to God.   Why? Because God said, “This is to be a lasting ordinance/observance.”

Every year on Yom Kippur, the High Priest would perform a special ceremony to purge the defilement of the Temple as well as from the people of Israel.  On this special day, he would bring a bull and two goats as a special offering, and the bull would be sacrificed to purge the temple from the defilements caused by the sins and misdeeds of the priests and their families.  He would sprinkle the blood of the bull inside the veil of the Holy of Holies on the “Mercy Seat”, which sat on the top of the Ark of the Covenant.  Then, he would cast lots and select one for the two goats to be a sin offering on behalf of the people of Israel.  He would next re-enter the Holy of Holies, sprinkle the blood of the goat upon the Mercy Seat the second time.

Finally, the High Priest would step back outside of the Temple, lay both of his hands on the head of the second goat, known as the Scape Goat, and start confessing all of the sins and transgressions of the people.  Once he was done covering the entire inventory of sins, and offending the people because of reminding them of what they were guilty of, the goat was lead out into the wilderness, with all of the iniquities, and pushed over a cliff, where it could never return back to the people again.

According to the Jewish Talmud, a scarlet cord was tied around the neck of the scapegoat that was reported to have turned white at the point that God accepted the blood offering, poured out in the Holy of Holies, marking the forgiveness of sins for the people.  It’s reported that after the death of Yeshua the Messiah, the scarlet cord failed to change color.

One of the roles of our blessed Master is the role of the High Priest, who offered the atonement for our sins by offering His own blood in the Holy of Holies – made without hands.  Hebrews 3 tells us, “Therefore brothers, you who share in a heavenly calling, consider Jesus, the apostle and high priest of our confession, who was faithful to him who appointed him, just as Moses also was faithful in all God’s house.”

Jesus redeemed us, paid the ransom, provided the gift of salvation.  The Bible says, :without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness of sin.” Heb. 9:22  The importance of blood sacrifice can’t be overstated.  God says in Leviticus 17:11, “For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it for you on the altar to atone for your souls, for it is the blood that makes atonement by the life.” God required the blood sacrifice.

So, why should this matter to us?  Because all of the Jewish feasts and holy days are pictures – portraits of none other than Jesus.  That’s why. And, following the death of Christ, the scarlet ribbon tied to the Scape Goat, never turned white again. The work was done.  The blood offering, once and for all, was paid.  Isn’t God good!

Let me close with just a few items for you to be aware of…

Don’t forget, let’s really be intentional when we are crossing paths or are aware of those who are hurting, to encourage them to get into the HOPE FOR HURTING PEOPLE weekend October 13-14.  All info is available at www.deerflat.org

A NEW class starts this Sunday morning for all in that College and Career season.  It begins at 10 am at Deer Flat Church.  Know anyone in this group?  Pass the word to them!  They are going to love it.

We begin a NEW SERIES this Sunday – THE CORE.  Don’t miss it.

A TREMENDOUS DAY AWAITS YOU THIS SUNDAY AT DEER FLAT!  I CAN’T WAIT TO SEE YOU!

Loving You and Loving Him,

Pastor D

AN OUTSTANDING FALL SEASON AWAITS YOU AT DEER FLAT

Believe it or not, Fall is in the air.  You know what that means: football, those spectacular fall colors, pumpkin lattes, pumpkin everything, caramel apples, some rain, crisp air, and a hot beverage.  But it also means an outstanding season at Deer Flat Church.  Let me get you caught up on what’s happening.

#1 THE BUILDING PROJECT UPDATE:  It has taken a lot of time and work to get this project going, but things are now moving at a great pace.  This week we have foundations being dug and poured, plumbers laying underground work, and a new 135’x35’x15’ seepage bed and drain system put in place (you may have seen the mountain of dirt to the south!).  Our building should begin to arrive on site in the next week or two.  Once the underground work is done, the concrete floor will be poured.  It then has to cure for about 10 days before we can begin to erect the building.  We hope to begin erection 2nd or 3rd week of October.  There will continue to be some space used in the northwest parking lot over the next few weeks, so parking will continue to be a bit challenging.  Please continue to pray for the overall project and specifically that we are able to get the various contractors on the job as needed to keep the job moving at a steady pace.  Thanks for your ongoing support of this project!

-Rick

#2 EXPLORERER BOB CORNUKE – THIS SUNDAY: Bob is always a fantastic guest at Deer Flat.  Bob is a former police investigator and SWAT team member, but he’s also a biblical investigator, international explorer and author of nine books. He has participated in over fifty expeditions around the world searching for lost locations described in the Bible. These journeys include searching for Mount Sinai in Egypt and Saudi Arabia, looking for the remains of Noah's Ark in Turkey with astronaut Jim Irwin (the eighth man to walk on the moon) and researching ancient Assyrian and Babylonian flood accounts in Iran.

He has followed ancient accounts of the Ark of the Covenant from Israel to Egypt and across Ethiopian highlands, and, most recently, his research team found the probable location of Paul's shipwreck off the coast of Malta. This find has resulted in the accounting of what many are saying are all four anchors, as described in Acts: 27. His most recent adventure is sparking international controversy. Chronicled in his new book "Temple", Bob makes the assertion that the Temples of Solomon and Herod were located in the City of David and not on the traditional temple mount platform.

This Sunday morning he will be speaking about THE SEARCH FOR THE LOST ARK OF THE COVENANT, and at 5 pm he will speaking about his most recent discoveries in the City of David.  Don’t miss the chance to invite a friend to this unforgettable morning at Deer Flat.

#3 FIRST HOUR PRESCHOOL TEACHERS AND VOLUNTEERS NEEDED: We are moving to a monthly rotation of teachers for preschool during 1st hour starting in October. We need individuals, parent/child teams, or teams of spouses. Child helpers need to be 5th grade or older. We could also use some teachers who would commit for one month at a time, or more if you’d like.

We need 4 teachers each month. Classes are 3yr, 4/5yr, pre-k, and Kindergarten.  Lessons and classrooms are all put together and ready to go. The teacher facilitates the class, and loves on the kids. WHAT AN ANSWER TO PRAYER YOU WOULD BE! If you would like more information or would like to sign up to help please contact Myia Day at (208) 409-8479 or seanandmyiaday@gmail.com

#4 BAPTISM SUNDAY IS QUICKLY APPROACHING – JUMP IN:  Have you gone public with your faith?  Have you taken that “next step” since you invited Christ into your life?  Why not join with some others who are getting ready to be baptized.  It’s not only a great next step, but it is a big step of obedience.  If you ever wondered if you could put a smile on God’s face, this will do it.  There is a class taking place this Sunday morning at 9:30 and baptism will happen on September 24th.  This is always a HUGE celebration for the Deer Flat Family.  It’s time, you know it, and you know who you are…

 #5 COFFEE WITH JER – THIS SATURDAY MORNING AT 9 A.M.-  All ladies are invited to have a coffee with Jerri this Saturday morning in the lobby.  One of the things that Jer and I both enjoy greatly is a chance to be with the people and to get acquainted with those who may be new to Deer Flat.  Each month, Jer has a coffee for any and all of the women of Deer Flat, where she has a chance to throw some love on you, share her heart, inspire and encourage you.

I can’t wait to see you this Sunday!  Let’s make this the best Fall season ever at Deer Flat!

Loving You and Loving Him,

Pastor D

PS. Don’t forget:  Voice of the Martyrs Conf. Sept 23, Love Caldwell Sept 23,  Hope For Hurting People Oct. 13-14

PRAY AND STAY INFORMED

I’m sure that you’ve been paying attention to the natural disasters that are happening in our Nation.  Some 80 fires burning out of control, Hurricane Harvey‘s continuing to disrupt lives at an enormous level, and millions of people in Florida and the East Coast working diligently to avoid Irma.  Wow.  If you let it, this can feel very overwhelming.  The levels of these disasters remind us how enormously powerful nature can be, and at the same time expose how helpless it can make a person feel.

We are so fortunate to have such tremendous people who make up our Nation.  The willingness of people to drop what they are doing, roll up their sleeves and risk their own lives to help save people is no small thing.  There is something to be said about the human spirit and love of your neighbor.  The stories that arise out of disasters are nothing short of impacting and touching.  Such is the saga of Harvey.  People who have driven for miles delivering supplies, and bringing love.  Others have thrown caution to the wind, counted the cost and decided they can do nothing less, giving everything they have to help make a difference.  Millions more have reached into their pockets and given generously. 

Thank you to all of you who gave last Sunday to help those impacted by Hurricane Harvey.  Over $5000 was given.  God will turn that money into changed lives and changed situations.  He is at work, using countless churches, organizations, ministries, people of faith and people of good will, to bring good out of tragedy.

With the Northwest seemingly burning up, have you found yourself praying for rain?  I want to encourage you to pray and intercede, asking God to watch over people, add His favor to the enormous efforts being put forth to extinguish the fires, and to reroute the storms.  Pray that God will put His hand of protection on our Nation.

North Korea is planning another ICBM missile test on Saturday – pray.  The threats continue and we need a divine intervention in this situation.  Nikki Haley said it so well last weekend speaking about the leader of N. Korea, “Enough is enough. Kim Jong Un is begging for war.”  Who knows, it may well be that God will use these times and situations to bring our nation together.  We certainly need to be unified.  So, pray.  Stay informed, then pray some more.  By the way, I invite you to stop by Room 13 each Sunday morning between 8:30-9:30 and spend some time praying.  It will definitely make a difference.

A few other items of interest:

SATURDAY –

            9 a.m.  Israel Trip Information Meeting in the Lobby.  Jer and I would love to have you travel with us on the next trip scheduled for February of ‘18

            College of Idaho pre game tail gate - As many of you remember, we had a number of football players from the College of Idaho join us at church a few weeks ago. Their first home game is Saturday, September 9th and we are going to do a Tailgate Party to show our support for them. We have one of our own who plays on the team and would love to encourage other players to attend Deer Flat!Set up starts at 9 am and have food ready to go at 11 am. The game begins at 1 pm. You are welcome to purchase tickets and attend the game or stay at the Tailgate and listen to it on the radio.

WHAT TO BRING:Deer Flat will be providing pulled pork sliders.

Bring your chairs, water or sodas (no alcohol) and a side to share with others.  We will be in spots E4 and E6 - come and join us!

SEPTEMBER 17 – Special Guest Bob Cornuke.  It’s always a great time when explorer Bob Cornuke comes to Deer Flat.  Bob will be speaking Sunday morning about THE SEARCH FOR THE LOST ARK OF THE COVENANT and then at 5 p.m. POTENTIAL PROOF OF THE LOCATION OF GOLGOTHA ANDTHE CRUCIFIXION.  This is one of those times to really invite your friends and neighbors to experience Deer Flat.

SEPTEMBER 23 – VOICE OF THE MARTYERS CONFERENCE AND LOVE CALDWELL – Two great events are happening.  Both are difference making.  Plan to get involved in one or the other and I promise, you’ll truly receive a HUGE blessing.

OCTOBER 13-14 – HOPE FOR HURING PEOPLE.  You’ll be hearing much more about this in the coming weeks, but we all know people who are hurting.  This is designed to be a big asset to those who are looking for hope and have been striking out.  Gifted professionals will be hosting 12 workshops.  Ted and Gail Haggard will speak Friday evening, workshops and closing session on Saturday.  All of the information and a chance to sign up can happen by simply going to www.deerflat.org/events

I can’t wait to see you this Sunday.  Until then, pray and stay informed!

All For Jesus,

Pastor D

IMPORTANT NEWS AND UPDATES

It’s Friday… and Sunday’s coming!  If you’ve got a few minutes I’ll get you caught up on some things that I think you’ll want to know…

HURRICANE HARVEY DISASTER RESPONSE – I’m sure that all of you have had the same feelings that Jer and I have had as we watch and listen to the reports of devastation coming out of Texas.  There is something that awakens in us that makes us want to do something.  It’s such a helpless feeling.  This Sunday we will be receiving an offering for the people of Texas.  Here’s what’s really great about this – 100% of what is given will be routed directly into the areas of greatest need.  We have a chance to help make a difference.  Let’s come prepared to be generous.  This is an extension of God’s heart towards people.  Your prayers make difference!

ONE SERVICE THIS LABOR DAY SUNDAY AT 10:30 – This will be a great Lord’s Day at Deer Flat.  We’ll be kicking off a new 2 part series:  A View From The Edge of Eternity. A meaningful morning awaits you.  Why not invite someone to experience Deer Flat with you?

A CHANCE TO HELP OUR SISTER CHURCH –OUT POST CHURCH -SEPTEMBER 10th – Many of you are familiar with our sister church in Boise called, NEW HEIGHTS.  New Heights is getting ready to launch a brand new effort in a brand new location, with a brand new name.  Its new name:  OUT POST.  Its new location: MERIDIAN.  Its Grand Opening: SEPTEMBER 10TH.  Their service for the next number of weeks will be at 6 pm.  We have a chance to help them get off to a strong start by attending their first service.  A couple of important things you may not be aware of:  Jeff and Amia Auw, former staff members at Deer Flat Church, are leading this flock.  We could give them a HUGE HUG by jumping in on September 10 and support their efforts.  Because the church services are in the evening, there may be some of you who could attend for several weeks and really help make this a strong launch.  Jeff and Amia will be with us this Sunday at Deer Flat, and we’ll get a chance to hear more about this.

HOPE FOR HURTING PEOPLE – You probably know a variety of people who are living with challenging situations, many of which seem to be hopeless.  I have never seen a time when so many people are hurting.  In spite of living in a time with such modern breakthrough’s, technology the helps make living easier, and many resources available to be a blessing, we continue to have large numbers of hurting people.  On October 13-14 “HOPE FOR HURTING PEOPLE” will be an opportunity to help hurting people in some very tangible ways.  There will be 12 different workshops with gifted and professional people who will be speaking into the many situations equipping, encouraging and resourcing people who attend.  Special Guest speakers will be TED AND GAIL HAGGARD.  Brochures are available this Sunday with a list of all the workshops addressing key issues and needs.  The Cost for the weekend is $25, but you’ll get a wealth of information and help.  I hope you’ll help us spread the word to those who could use some hope and some help!

VOICE OF THE MARTYERS CONFERENCE AND LOVE CALDWELL – SEPTEMBER 23 – Two outstanding opportunities await you in just a few weeks.

What a privilege for Deer Flat to host the Voice of the Martyrs conference.  Great speakers, great information, and a chance to really understand the level of persecution of Christians happening in our modern world.  I encourage you to take advantage of this awesome opportunity.

LOVE CALDWELL – The annual effort to care for and provide service for the marginalized of our city, will be happening at Canyon Springs High School, 516 N 211th St from 8am-3pm on September 23rd as well. Many of you are familiar with this effort.  Medical and Dental services will be provided.  Many different services will be provided.  Lots of volunteers help make a HUGE difference.  If you can volunteer or even avail yourself for a couple of hours, why not help lift the load.

By the way, you guys made a tremendous impact on our two US Senators when you turned out to the Town Hall.  It really spoke to them.  I’ll tell you a bit more about it on Sunday. I can’t wait to see you this Sunday.  I LOVE MY CHURCH!!

All For Jesus,

Pastor D

HAVE YOU WITNESSED ANY OF LIFE’S TRIALS THIS WEEK?

Probably like me, you watched the heartbreaking and tragic attack on a group of people in Spain.  Sheer Terrorism!  As I sat watching, a variety of thoughts went through my mind:

            Why does stuff like this happen?

            Why does it happen to good people?

            Will these kind of attacks never stop?

            Why is life so full of trials and heartaches?

Fortunately, the Bible contains some important helps when it comes to what it means to live in a fallen world. Having the right kind of knowledge on why bad things happen to people in this life will not only help you understand why these events happen to everyone in the first place, but this kind of knowledge will also help you to be able to weather these types of storms and eventually get through them when they come your way in this life.  There are a variety of reasons trials and tragedies happen, but consider just this one:  THE CURSE OF ADAM AND EVE.

The #1 main reason why we all experience a certain amount of turmoil, conflict, and adversity in this life is a result of the curse that Adam and Eve brought down upon this earth as a result of both of them disobeying a direct command from the Lord not to eat any fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Adam and Eve represented all of mankind that would come after them when they were first tested in the Garden of Eden.

And when the both of them did not obey God’s direct command to stay off this one tree, they and everyone since them, would all have to be born into a journey through this cursed and fallen world before we can make it into heaven.

As a result of the earth now becoming cursed, we now have all kinds of bad things that can happen to anyone of us at any time. Our physical bodies are now subject to the death process. Sooner or later, every single one us will have to physically die before we can cross over to be with our Lord in heaven. And not only will our physical bodies eventually deteriorate, corrupt, and pass on, but they will also be subject to diseases and illnesses in this life.

Another consequence that we all have to put up with as a result of this curse is all of the natural disasters that can occur at a moment’s notice. Earthquakes, thunderstorms, lightning strikes, tornadoes, hurricanes, forest fires, and volcanic eruptions and more can strike anywhere at anytime impacting thousands of people at a moment’s notice. And on top of all of the different natural disasters that can occur in this life, we also have to deal with just natural accidents that can occur such as house fires and car wrecks.

So, we have to put up with a certain amount of people who will break some of God’s laws in order to get what they want – crime.  There will be a certain amount of people in this life who will always be choosing to live life on the dark side, causing us to have local police departments to provide us with protection, and each Nation to have their own military in order to protect them from harm and take over.

Though we have all been created equal in the eyes of our Lord, not everyone will get equal dealings in this life. Some people end up making a lot of money in this life, others will live in poverty. Some people will go through this life without experiencing much sickness or disease, while other people will fight one sickness and disease after another.

Some people will become victims of some type of crime and abuse, and others will go through this life and not have a hair on their head ever be touched or harmed. Some people will die and depart from this life at a very young age, and others will live to a ripe old age.

As a result of this curse from Adam, we don’t know what will happen to us two minutes from now, much less what will happen to us two weeks from now.  So get this: Though we are now new creations in Christ as a result of being transformed by Him, and though we have the person of the Holy Spirit dwelling on the inside to help empower and lead us through this crazy life, none of this will remove the curse factor that is still in full operation on this earth.

So, what can we do?  Great question!  I’ll tell you about it this Sunday when we look at the subject of Trials and why we hate them.  If you’ve got a friend going through some deep water, be sure to invite them to join us this week at Deer Flat.  It’s going to be a great Lord’s Day.  Between now and then, let’s keep the good people of Spain in our prayers, along with so many in our own nation and family.

All For Jesus

Pastor D

PS:  WHY NOT DROP BY ROOM 13 SOMETIME BETWEEN 8:30-9:30 THIS SUNDAY AND SPEND SOME TIME IN PRAYER.  IT WILL MAKE A DIFFERENCE.

PPS: It's that time again to extend our invitation to you and your family to help Camp Cascade put summer away and prepare for fall and winter. This is our second and final Family Work Weekend for this year. We are so thankful that we can count on all of you to keep the camp looking it's best throughout the year! We look forward to seeing you soon. For more information, contact Cindy at 208-325-3048 or cindy@campcascade.org.  You can register online at deerflat.org/events

LIVING WISELY IN CONCERNING TIMES

Dear Church Family,

I hope you’ll take a few minutes to read my thoughts today as we find ourselves in the midst of some very concerning times.  If you’ve been watching the news of what is happening in our world, especially with North Korea, this seems to be the continual message:

“The situation is getting more dangerous and shows no signs of improving”

We live in a day where wisdom is most needed, but very often neglected. Because of the complexities of daily life, we need lots of wisdom to make good decisions. The Book of Proverbs is filled with God’s wisdom. The 900 proverbs cover most of life’s situations. Learning from Proverbs and praying through this incredible book leads to wisdom and character transformation. Walking with stability in a shaking world is going to become a necessity as the days become more evil. God’s wisdom and knowledge keeps us stable and secure with a heart at rest. He is our shield and guards our path.

“For the Lord gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding…He is a shield to those who walk uprightly; He guards the path of justice” – Prov. 2:6-8

God is enabling us through His Word to walk in a new level of wisdom and to model to others how to live in troubled times. Walking in God’s wisdom can keep us from so much heartache and loss. We don’t have to waste our lives consumed with fear and uncertainty, but we can accomplish great things for God! What a great gift that God has given to us - An entire book of Wisdom. A great exercise for us to practice is to pray a Proverb or a chapter of Proverbs every day. It results in us receiving wisdom and living it out during a time when people are really longing for some significant understanding.  What if we determined to learn the art of living wisely everyday by praying through the Proverbs?

In light of this, there is a noticeable increase of sabre rattling, which creates concern and questions about potential war and the future.  So, I will give you my thoughts briefly.

War is never good, but it is sometimes necessary. Why? Because sin is an ever present reality that has to be dealt with. James 4:1-2 says, “What is the source of quarrels and conflicts among you?  Is not the source your pleasures that wage war in your members? You lust and do not have; so you commit murder.”

At the forefront of much war and conflict is an idolatry that says, “I want more. I want what you have.”  And so there are wars and rumors of war. Much of it is rooted in human sin.  Evil is ultimately rooted in every human heart. This is why we need the transforming work of Christ. This is what changes people’s thinking, people’s ways, and people’s decisions.

To navigate successfully through life, making decisions that honor God, requires that we seek the Source of all wisdom. As James exhorts, “If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you” Jms. 1:5   Yes, we can call out to God; He alone can give you the wisdom to live wisely for Him.

We have a chance to engage in some intercessory prayer on behalf of our Nation and our President, and even for our enemies. I invite you and encourage you to stop by room 13 from 8:30 – 9:30 and pray for our leaders, for wisdom, and for God’s intervention in our times and the tension with North Korea.  It will make a difference!

 This Sunday we will wrap up our series on Hosea. It’s a fascinating and insightful epilogue about the Redeeming Heart of God.  I can’t wait to see you this Sunday!

Pastor D

GOD'S "ILLOGICAL" WAYS ARE DEFINITELY BETTER THAN OURS

Hey Deer Flat Family, have you ever noticed that many of God’s greatest recorded activities are attached to logic and reasoning that makes no sense to us.  Consider these:

1    Give me those 5 loaves and 2 fish … I need to feed 5,000 people

2    Pick the boy with no armor and only a sling, he’ll go kill the giant

3    Noah, build a massive ark, even though it has never rained

4    Walk around the walls of Jericho for 7 days … then they’ll just fall down

5    We need wine for the wedding, so fill the pots with water

Another “illogical” idea of God is found in Luke 5.  The account finds the disciples fixing their nets after a long and unsuccessful night of fishing.  Jesus steps onto the scene and asks the disciples to go back out into the deep water and, once again, cast out their nets.  Take a moment to look at this from the disciple’s point of view.  They are the pros in the fishing business – not Jesus.  They didn’t even know who Jesus was at this time.  They were tired, had worked all night, had exhausted every means to catch fish and had just put away all their gear.  So the request of Jesus to get all their things and go out to deep water and cast their nets seemed not only illogical, but extremely inconvenient.   You can hear the underlying fatigue in Peter’s reply, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything …

 The disciples had a number of valid excuses to deny or delay the request of Jesus, but listen to the response of Peter: “because You say so, I will let down the nets.”  Although there was no logical reason to go back out fishing, in faith they followed the request of Jesus and the results were overwhelming … they caught more fish than what their two boats could hold!

Looking at this story, I can’t help but think about the many biblical commands or internal promptings of God to do things that don’t always make sense to us, like:

1. Loving my enemy. 

2. Giving when I have little to give. 

3.  Serving when my schedule is full. 

4. Sharing my faith with someone I don’t know. 

5. Stepping out on a limb to do something for God that I’ve never done before. 

Totally irrational! But this is how God loves to work. What if we locked in with Him so that the next time He asks us to do something illogical, we will, “Just because He says so”, knowing that He’ll take care of the rest.  Just remember “God’s ‘illogical” ideas and ways are infinitely better than our most brilliant ones.”  I’ll be talking about this more when we get together this Sunday and open up Hosea once again.  I can’t wait to see you.

Speaking of Illogical, I’ll close with this.

 The Paradoxical Commandments - Dr. Kent M. Keith

People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered. Love them anyway.

If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives. Do good anyway.

If you are successful, you win false friends and true enemies. Succeed anyway.

The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway.

Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable. Be honest and frank anyway.

The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds. Think big anyway.

People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs. Fight for a few underdogs anyway.

What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight. Build anyway.

People really need help but may attack you if you do help them. Help people anyway.

Give the world the best you have and you'll get kicked in the teeth. Give the world the best you have anyway.   See you Sunday!

All For Jesus!

Pastor D

SOME SIGNIFICANT UPDATES YOU DON’T WANT TO MISS

Hello To My Deer Flat Family!  I’ll get right to it…

Deer Flat Church was birthed 109 years ago. Most churches haven’t had the history and blessings that we’ve had.  God has certainly been gracious to us.  Since our birth in the field, we have seen Christ continue to build this church in more ways than the congregations ever asked or imagined.  Deer Flat has consistently been used by God to reach the lost and raise up high impact, low maintenance followers.  We remain committed to make heaven more crowded by being the front porch looking for prodigals who want to come home.

Together we have been committed to work hard to make Deer Flat a church where God gets both the credit and the glory.  We’re not about to change that!  But what I love so much about my church is the faithful dedication of a whole host of people who are unified in their passions to see this local church reach its full God given potential.  And it’s being done week after week.  Let me give you a glimpse with some updates and a look at the future.

College of Idaho Update – I couldn’t have been more proud of the Deer Flat gang that I was last Sunday. WOW!  You really came with you’re “A” game.  So many of you wore purple.  You outdid yourselves in throwing some serious love on all of the Football players!  Your warmth, love, greetings, and hospitality were all used to impact the lives of some 40 young men.  I had so many comments shared with me by these young athletes.  One of them said, “I had the most meaningful and amazing morning here.  I didn’t know what to expect.  This is the first time I’ve ever been to church in my life.”  THANK YOU DEER FLAT PEOPLE FOR BEING JESUS!  It was powerful and beautiful!  We will see a variety of these young men come back through our door.  There are some things we can do for these students throughout the coming school year.  Let me share a couple of thoughts from Coach Moroski that we can really get ahold of:

·         Rally your congregation around the Yotes by doing any of the following: Host them for a meal.  Attend a game.  Sponsor a
Tail Gate Party at the College a couple of hours before a home game. Continue to hire any of these players to do some work for you as the season comes to a close.

·         Help me rally some of the others churches to do what you at Deer Flat have been doing.

·         Let me know how I can be a help to your congregation

Building Expansion – Great News from Rick Day: “I just received notice that we should have a permit by end of next week!  We have also been given a green light to start excavation.  The excavator plans to be onsite on or before 8/7.”

Important People, Events and Dates:

·         August 22:  Senators Risch and Crapo will hold a Town Hall Meeting from 4:30-5:30 pm with Q&A to follow.  THIS IS A ONE ISSUE TOWN HALL.  IT CENTERS ON ISRAEL/US RELATIONS.  NO OTHER ISSUES WILL BE ENTERTAINED AT THIS PARTICULAR EVENT. Would each of you help us get this invite and information out t1o your email and social media lists?  Let’s pack the place out on August 22

·         August 22 – 7 pm: CUFI Event with special guest: Kasim Hafeez.  You will be deeply impacted as he shares his story of be a radicalized Muslim that was forever changed by his personal visit to Israel. 

·         September 17th: Bob Cornuke – Explorer and modern day Indiana Jones, will be speaking a both morning services and doing a second topic at 5 pm.

·         September 23 - Voice Of The Martyrs Conference at Deer Flat Church.  This will be an unforgettable day of hearing from great speakers about the realities of what is going on in the persecution of Christians in the 21st century.

·         October 13-14: Hope For Hurting People.  A weekend workshop that will be filled with hope and help for those who are hurting.  This will be a tremendous resource for those looking for people who specialize in dispensing real hope.  Key Note Speakers:  Ted and Gail Haggard

·         October 15 Special Guest Speakers: Ted and Gail Haggard for both morning services

 So, we continue to be a church full of Life!  These are great days for us at Deer Flat and as you can see, the future is very intriguing and exciting.  I can’t wait to see you tomorrow.  A GREAT LORD’S DAY AWAITS YOU AT DEER FLAT

 All For Jesus!

Pastor D

GETTING READY FOR COMPANY

Greetings to my Deer Flat Family,

Jer and I, along with sixteen others from Idaho, have been in DC this week at the Christians United For Israel Summit.  It was an outstanding time for over 7,000 people. We enjoyed greetings from PM Netanyahu, an inspiring evening with Vice President Pence, and a host of other great speakers who gave us very pertinent information regarding Israel and its current situation.  We capped off our time on Capitol Hill connecting with our Idaho Congressional Offices.

Our conversations with senators Risch and Crapo were very productive.  An important piece of information here: Both of our Senators will be holding a Town Hall Meeting at Deer Flat Church on August 22 at 4:30. They will be speaking specifically about Israel and the US/Israel relations and the various issues Israel is dealing with.  Please help us get the word out on this through your email lists and social media connections.  Lets pack the place out.  Lets make sure that both of our Senators get exposed to the heart and the passion of Deer Flat.

As we are getting ready for company, don't forget that we are going to have a great number of College of Idaho football players and coaches with is this Sunday.  They will be joining us for second hour.  We will have a chance to encourage them, pray over them, love on them and feed them.

Probably like Jer and I, you do all you can to make your company feel right at home when they show up.  Lets do that for the Yotes.  Wear some purple, make some room in your seating section, reach out and welcome, give them some of that great Deer Flat hospitality.  This is something all of you are really good at, which I adore about my church!

One other piece before I close.  We have had a series of outstanding camps this summer at Camp Cascade.  Our Middle School camp had 57 kids attend.  High School camp was 84, and this week I believe Kidz Kamp has 95 children attending.  Forget praying for the kids, pray for Julie. There's no way we could do this without a tremendous group of Volunteers.  We have the greatest bunch of Volunteers at Deer Flat Church.  We have got to be the most spoiled church around!  Thank you - all of you - for your support, your amazing generosity, your faithfulness, and the tenacious way you stand by the church week after week and month after month! I am so proud to be the pastor of Deer Flat Church!

I CAN'T WAIT TO SEE YOU THIS SUNDAY,  IT'S GOING TO BE AN INCREDIBLE DAY!

Pastor D

WHY WOULD I WRITE ABOUT JULY?

It’s July, that’s why! And I’m loving it because…

·         You can sip lemonade in the shade

·         You can graze your way through the fruits and vegetables locally grown.  I wait all year long for the fruit season to arrive.  I work my way through the strawberries, cherries, apricots, berries, peaches, nectarines, watermelon, plums and wrap it up with the apples as we head into Fall.

·         You can catch an outdoor movie and enjoy a wonderful summer night

·         You can float the river – many to choose from

·         You can visit the Farmers Market

·         Why not do a spontaneous road trip.  They have this thing called a “Cost 2 Drive Calculator” and all you do is put in where you want to go in Idaho (or wherever) and it will tell you what it will cost to make the trip.  You can also access the top motels and food places along the way and maps.  Here’s the website: www.beta.costtodrive.com/  

·         You can have the GREATEST CHILDREN’S CAMP in Idaho – Camp Cascade.  You can sign your child up and grab all of the information about it right here: www.deerflat.org.  Wednesday is the deadline

·         You can host the COLLEGE OF IDAHO YOTES FOOTBALL TEAM at a church service.  Yep, July 23, 2nd Service.  LET’S MAKE THEM FEEL AT HOME BY WEARING SOMETHING PURPLE THAT DAY.

·         You can catch a meaningful church service at Deer Flat Church – and, meet some of the greatest people on the face of the earth.

So, you can see why I love July.  I hope you’ll have a chance to get away for a bit just to catch your breath and find some refreshment.  THANK YOU TO THE WHOLE DEER FLAT FAMILY FOR HELPING US STAY STRONG THROUGHOUT THE SUMMER.  WE COULDN’T DO IT WITHOUT YOU!

I know I tell you often, but I Love My Church – Really!  I can’t wait to see you Sunday.  Come expecting a great day!

All For Jesus,

Pastor D

SOME OPEN DOORS AND SOME IMPORTANT INFO

A few years ago, I had the privilege of speaking at the chapel service for the College of Idaho football team.  Having taken a year to get the program up and going, it was now the start of the first football season for C of I for many years.  It was a very exciting time, not only for the school, but for the city of Caldwell.

It was at that chapel service that I met Coach Mike Moroski. From that time on, I have been invited back each year to speak at the chapel services.  A few months ago, I sat with Coach Mosorski and had a very wonderful chat.  As a result, some doors have opened for Deer Flat to be able to step in and help make an investment in the lives of some outstanding young people.

One of the things that Deer Flat scores high marks in, is its love for students. So, let me share with you some of the ways we can really help make a difference in the lives of the football players at C of I.  These are straight from the coach:

·        40-50 new players, new to Caldwell, will be arriving July 6 for our mini camp.  They will be in town for 3 weeks.

·        Would you consider hiring some COI FB players to work?  Here’s some great reasons:  It provides a chance to…

Get to know some of the guys

Guys get a sense of earning their keep

Greater connection to the locale for them

Your folks (Deer Flat) get some necessary work, odd jobs done

Sense of supporting, in the right way, College Football players

Above all else – a different kind of access

So, there are a lot of hours that they are available. Part time work would be perfect.  Anything would be good.

 On July 23, we will have a significant number of the C of I football team worshiping with us in 2nd hour.  We will have a chance to welcome them and pray over them.  Then, we will host them for lunch.  This could be a wonderful and important relationship we can carry forward in investing in the lives of some young people who are away from home, and have an open heart toward God.

Let’s keep Coach Moroski and the Team in our prayers during these days, and let’s plan to throw some serious love on them July 23rd.  In the meantime, if you would like to provide some work for them, please contact Jessi Sams here at the office – 208.459.3845or jessisams@deerflat.org

There’s still time to get your children and Sr. High students registered for summer camp.  It’s easy to do by simply going to www.deerflat.org.

I can’t wait to see you this Sunday!

All For Jesus,

Pastor D

IT'S SUMMER TIME, SUMMER TIME

IT'S SUMMER TIME, SUMMER TIME

So I had a bit of heartbreak this week.  Got a minute?  I’ll tell you about it anyway…

I have always loved this time of the year – spring through early summer, before it’s hot. But I really look forward to the days getting longer.  The sun rises early and goes down late.  Even after it’s gone, the evening stay light for quite awhile.

Well, as I’m watching the news, the weather man says, “It’s the longest day of the year today.”  I found myself excited and disappointed at the same time.  From that day forward, until the Winter Solstice, the days are going to keep getting shorter.  It’s wrong, I tell you.  It’s just wrong.

Then, I went to the calendar and I looked at how many days were left in June, and I found myself grabbing for a chilled Fresca and a chair, just to catch my breath. “Where has June gone?”, I asked myself.  And I didn’t like how I answered myself back.  I know, I have an appointment with my therapist next week, so don’t worry.

But here’s the really great news: I took some inventory of what a GREAT month it’s been around Deer Flat.  Wow, it’s been full of fun, fulfillment, vision, excitement and God’s faithfulness.  Let me just highlight a few of the things that June has contained:

·         GROUND BREAKING – Unforgettable

·         VACATION BIBLE SCHOOL – Loaded with fun, children, great times and great Volunteers

·         CUBA MISSION TRIP – Tremendous!  Both the team and the church in Cuba benefitted greatly.  God blessed, protected and provided.  What a God we serve, and what an outstanding team of servants!

 Because June isn’t over, let me tell you about this Sunday and what’ you can expect in the near future…

·         BAPTISMS – At the close of 2nd hour, we’ve got a wonderful group of Deer Flatter’s that will be going public with their faith.  Adults, students and children make up this group. Plan to celebrate big time with these that have decided to take this great step of obedience!  It’s going to be outstanding.

·         HOSEA – The story of God’s redemptive love continues.  I can tell you, it’s going to be a significant time in God’s Word!

·         JULY 2 – ONE SERVICE – Each major holiday we do an “all church” Sunday.  Service will begin at 10:30 a.m.

One final thing…we’ve made it a bit more creative in how you enter into the building this week.  Come and find out.  Our Greeters will be pointing the way.  WE’RE UNDER CONSTRUCTION!

A GLORIOUS INCONVENIENCE

What is it about inconvenience that is so inconvenient?  Get ready for a bit of my insanity as I’m about to turn into a Rantosaurus Rex, but stick with me on this one.

·         Have you ever kicked back in your favorite chair, got really comfortable and realized the remote is out of reach?  Inconvenient

·         Have you ever put on a pair of fresh socks, walked into the kitchen and step on some water? Yep, inconvenient

·         When you take too long at a self-service checkout to get am item into the bag while the till's telling you to "Please put the item into the bagging area" and then when you finally manage to do it the till says "Unexpected item in bagging area, please remove this item before continuing" and you have to get someone to unfreeze your till so you can continue. Really inconvenient

·         How about when you’re driving Hwy 55 out of Nampa, when two lanes merge and more than one car tries to merge into your lane in front of you. Hate that

·         How about when you pull up to a red light that makes you sit at it with no traffic around?  I tell you, the robots are winning – totally inconvenient.

·         You do your best Steph Curry 3-point shot towards the trash can, miss it, and have to walk over, pick it up, and put it in the trash – inconvenient.

·         When you’re half way to work and remember you forgot your phone – totally inconvenient.

·         You show up to your church and you can’t figure out how to get in because they are doing construction.  Really inconvenient.

I relate to all of these and so many more.  But here’s the deal about the construction project at Deer Flat Church: It’s a TEMPORARY  inconvenience for a permanent improvement.

I see the road construction going on all over the place this summer. Warning signs are all over the place, and it really creates lots of inconvenience. I looked up the word inconvenience and it is defined as something that causes difficulty, trouble or discomfort. Looking at that definition, I believe all of us can say we have experienced some inconveniences in our lives.

This is the conversion story of Saul over in Acts 9. Anyone who knew Saul recognized that he was a dedicated Jew and believed in the scriptures. He was having difficulty with this new movement known as “the Way”. He did not agree with the teachings of Jesus or believe that He was the Messiah. He began to oppose and persecute anyone who followed Jesus. The first place we read about Saul is in Acts 7:58. He is witnessing the stoning of Stephen and holding the coats of his accusers. In Acts 8:2 we see him begin to persecute the church in Jerusalem and because of this persecution the followers of Jesus scattered to various cities. Many of them settled in Damascus. When Saul was informed of this, he received letters giving him authority to go to Damascus and bring to justice any followers of Jesus.

So with letters in his hand, he heads to Damascus. On the way to Damascus, he has a life changing experience. He sees a light that is so bright it knocks him off his beast. He hears a voice asking why he is persecuting Him. Saul asks who was speaking. He said, “I am Jesus whom you persecute.” Saul received instructions of where and what to do. One problem - he was struck blind and had to be led.

Saul came to Damascus for one thing but along the way made a detour. For three days, he stayed in the home of Judas. He was blind and spent his time fasting and praying. This was a temporary inconvenience and hindered him from accomplishing the task he was sent to do. He received a new direction for his life. While going through this experience, God spoke to Ananias and told him to pray for Saul that he might receive his sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.

Ananias was concerned at first because he heard of what Saul had done to the believers in Jerusalem. He also knew that Saul was coming to Damascus to do the same thing. God let Ananias know He had plans for Saul. Immediately his eyes were opened and then he was baptized. Saul remained with the disciples at Damascus and began to preach that Jesus was the Son of God. Saul had a temporary inconvenience but a permanent improvement.

Just like God had a plan for Saul, He has a plan for you. As the plan is being worked out in your life, you may experience some inconveniences but know they are just temporary. When God’s plan for your life is complete, you will experience a permanent improvement. After Saul’s Damascus road experience, his name was changed to Paul. The one who once persecuted the church and denied that Jesus was the Messiah was responsible for writing almost one third of the New Testament. He was responsible for establishing many churches that continued spreading the good news. He was responsible for mentoring many who became giants in the faith. Yes Paul had a temporary inconvenience but it led to his permanent improvement.

That’s what we’re endeavoring to do at Deer Flat.  Your flexibility and patience will be a HUGE blessing.  So, strap in and hang on for a great adventure.  Whatever you do, don’t bail.  We need you!  We will keep you very informed as progress is made. 

THANK YOU TO THE WHOLE CHURCH FAMILY FOR MAKING LAST SUNDAY AND UNFORGETTABLE DAY OF CELEBRATION AND DEDICATION! Almost 1200 people gathered for this amazing day.  What a Church!  What a tremendous flock!  I am so fortunate to be the pastor at Deer Flat Church!  Love My Church.

A couple of quick items of interest…

-      There is a tremendous week happening at VBS.  Over 250 kids and growing. Tremendous volunteers and parents making this a phenomenal week.  Catch the big program FRIDAY EVENING at 6:30PM!!

-      Men’s 4 Wheeler Outing. Meet at the Church 9 a.m. Saturday.  Bring some lunch

-      Baptism Class this Sunday morning – Why not take a bold step and go public with your faith.  This is a tremendous step of obedience.

Can’t wait to see you this Sunday as we kick off a brand new series: Hosea – The story of God’s redemptive love.

Loving You and Loving Him,

Pastor D

THE BEST SUMMER EVER AT DEER FLAT

It’s true!  A variety of great things are coming together to make this the Best Summer that we’ve ever had at Deer Flat.  Typically when summer arrives, there is quite an exodus as so many people vacation all summer long.  That’s been changing over the past few years.  Why? Probably a variety of reasons, but for sure, one of those reasons is the amount of life happening through the summer months.

We don’t shift into a lower gear as summer arrives.  We continue to do ministry at the same high quality levels, with the same dedicated efforts that we practice throughout the rest of the year.  I’ll give you just a brief overview of what you can expect to experience around Deer Flat this summer…

#1 – An Unforgettable Ground Breaking Sunday – June 11.  The entire morning will be a great time of celebration for the Deer Flat family as the time has now arrived to break the ground and get this building project, a Children’s Ministry Center, under way.   It begins with a chance to hear what God has been doing among us over the past year.  We’ll revisit the story of God’s grace towards the Deer Flat Family for 109 years.  We’ll then transition over to the celebration of ground breaking with some really great ingredients.  Whether you’re a 1st hour attender or 2nd hour, you’re going to want to be here for the entire morning.  The coffee will be hot and the donuts will be free.  We don’t want anyone to miss out. By the way, THANK YOU FOR YOUR WONDERFUL FINANCIAL SUPPORT IN THIS BIG UNDERTAKING!

#2 – An Amazing Week of Vacation Bible School – June 12-16.  As always, this is a HUGE event every year.  Julie and her team have an powerful week lined up for the kids. There’s still time to get your children registered, and we always appreciate and value Volunteers.  The theme: ONE NATION UNDER GOD!  Get your neighbor kids, grandkids, your own kids, and let’s get them exposed to the greatest story ever told in the Bible.  You can register online at www.deerflat.org

#3 – Special Guest: Bob Cornuke, Sunday August 13th.  Many of you remember Bob when he was with us a year ago.  This will be an educational day as we explore with a true “Indiana Jones.”  He will be sharing about his explorations, and the search for the lost Ark of the Covenant.  Save the date.  Invite a friend. Plan to enjoy a great Lord’s Day.

#4 – This Sunday: Revelation 12 pt. 2.  We will pick up where we left off last week.  I’ll be doing a bit of review for those who may not have been with us over the holiday weekend, and then we’ll trek through another section of this amazing prophecy.  This is one of those things I think your neighbor would enjoy listening to.  Come expecting an outstanding time together with God and His family.

I can’t wait to see you this Lord’s Day.  I hope each of you will be able to have a bit of time away this summer.  We’ve got an amazing summer happening around Deer Flat, in fact, it’s THE BEST SUMMER EVER!

Loving You and Loving Him,

Pastor D

CHANGES ARE TAKING PLACE

Hi Deer Flat
Almost 1 year ago we introduced our plan to build an addition that would expand our lobby, add a kitchen, add restrooms and most importantly house our children's ministry for the next generation.  Your response of financial support, services and offers to volunteer was overwhelmingly positive.

Since that time we have been working on plans, working through a variety of challenges and have finally submitted a set of plans to the Fire Marshall for review.  Upon his approval they will be forwarded to the county and we hope to have a permit in June.

During this time we have also built the storage building and are nearing completion of the shop renovation, which will give us space to work on projects throughout the year.  We have also been working on some of the needs in the old part of the facility, much of which will never be seen, but will maximize it's use, maintain it and keep operational costs lower in the future.
One of the unexpected projects in the old portion, will be the addition of sprinklers.  Although we were initially hoping we could avoid this, it appears that it will be a requirement.  We are currently evaluating the options, cost and approach to this.

When you arrive next you will notice changes already taking place, such as trees gone, the entry cover gone, mounds of dirt and trenches etc.  These things will become more evident each week up to the actual ground breaking, excavation and construction.

At some point in the next few weeks the main entrance to the lobby (west) will become unusable.  We are working on a plan to re-route you through what is now the office reception area, but we have to do some remodeling to make that work first.  While it is exciting it will also be inconvenient at times, so keep the end result in mind at those moments.  Thank you all for investing in the future of our kids and of Deer Flat.  Our best days are ahead!

Rick