Trail Christian Fellowship – Welcome to TCFinTouch!The e-newsletter ofTrail Christian Fellowship
|Welcome to TCFinTouch!The e-newsletter ofTrail Christian Fellowship|
Sundays at 9am and 11am in the Outdoor Pavilion
Children and Youth Ministries Available at both ServicesServices are Simulcast to the Indoor Worship Center*Services are Livestreamed on trail.org, YouTube, and Facebook
Wednesdays at 6:30pm in the Outdoor Pavilion
Awana, Children and Youth Ministries AvailableService is Simulcast to the Indoor Fireside Room*Service is Livestreamed on trail.org, YouTube, and Facebook
*Masks are required for indoor venues
*Please join the TCF family online if you are not feeling wellTrail.orgFacebookYoutubeSermon ArchiveBear with us!TCF is installing a new campus-wide telephone system. Thank you for your patience as we work through the inevitable bugs, kinks, and hiccups. Any message will be returned as soon as possible!From Our PastorsThe Hope of the Ascension
Then he led them out as far as Bethany, and lifting up his hands he blessed them. While he blessed them, he parted from them and was carried up into heaven. And they worshiped him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and were continually in the temple blessing God.(Luke 24:50-53)
And when he had said these things, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus who was taken up from you into heaven will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.(Acts 1:9-11)
This Jesus God raised up, and of that we all are witnesses. Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this that you yourselves are seeing and hearing…let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.(Acts 2:32-36) We recently celebrated a joyful Resurrection Day. Jesus Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection form the very heart of gospel proclamation in the New Testament. But does the message of the gospel culminate solely in the resurrection? Actually, no, it does not. In fact, when Mary Magdalene, the first person to see the risen Christ, grabbed hold of him in the garden that amazing morning, Jesus gently but clearly told her not to cling to him, “…for,” he said, “I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and tell them that I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.” Twice he uses the verb “ascend,” indicating yet another extremely important event that must happen. He must take his official place, as the first resurrected human, beside his Father in heaven. Why should Mary not cling to him? Not because it was dangerous or disobedient for her to do so, but because she didn’t need to. He would appear to her and his other friends many times over the next 40 days. And then, following his ascension, when he was seated at the Father’s right hand, he would pour out his own Spirit on them and remain personally with them (and us) through the end of the age (Matt.28:18-20).
Luke describes Christ’s physical ascension in his gospel (24:50-53) and in Acts (1:1-11). In these passages the Lord commissions the apostles and promises them immersion in the Holy Spirit, who will empower them for the continuation of his mission. They will begin the process of reaching the whole world with the message of the risen Lord Jesus, the only message on earth that can bring forgiveness and eternal life. But that mission does not start in earnest until Jesus has permanently taken up his position at the right hand of the Father. Why? Because he will personally empower and oversee the work. It is from that position of universal authority that the risen, divine/human Lord takes the controls of the universe (so to speak) in his hands. The picture in my mind (inadequate of course) is of a pilot taking his seat in the cockpit of a gigantic airliner, engaging the engines, grasping the yoke, pressing the thrust levers forward and lifting off.
Christ’s ascension is the key to the application of his work on the cross and in the resurrection. As the risen, ascended and true Lord of the visible and invisible realms (Matt.28:18-20) he pours out the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, giving spiritual rebirth to the church, inaugurating God’s coming kingdom on earth and guaranteeing his eventual return and the regeneration of the entire creation (Rom.8:18-30; Rev.21-22). He takes up the mantles (almost always separated among different men in the Old Covenant) of Prophet, Priest, and King. He is the Living Word of God (Jn.1:1-5), the Ultimate High Priest (see the book of Hebrews), and the King in God’s Kingdom (Eph.1:15-23; Col.1:11-20). The Ascension is incredibly important.
There are many implications and entailments of Christ’s ascension. But since we continue to experience unprecedented health and political crises in our world today, I would like to meditate on his absolute, personal, providential sovereignty over human life. There is a genuine human being supervising our world. He is truly, practically, materially, wisely in charge of all that happens in cosmic history and in our personal histories. He understands and shares our suffering as a true Man, and he guides us unerringly as true God. He is moving us and our world toward a pre-planned, foreordained victory in him (see Eph.1:3-14). God mysteriously uses simple free human will (both bad and good decisions) to bring about his overarching and redemptive purposes (see Acts 2:23-24, 4:27-28; Gen.45:8, 50:20 for examples). We don’t know how it is that un-coerced human decisions can blend with and come under God’s purposeful sovereignty, but the Bible is clear that they do. The apostles did not attempt philosophical explanations of these things. Instead, they accepted the Lord’s sovereignty as a source of great comfort and courage. Paul’s first chapter of Ephesians bubbles over with precisely this supernatural gospel wisdom. But his classic exposition of it in Romans 8:28 is still the go-to verse:
For we know that for those who love God all things work together for good. For those who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.
So, there are no true “accidents” in the life of a believer, or for that matter in all of human history. Nor are there any experiences, tragedies, trials, or traumas that the Lord does not ordain and redeem for eternal good. Note that Romans 8:28 does not say that everything that happens is in itself good, but that the Lord uses it, choreographs it together, for ultimate blessing in the lives of his people (Acts 2:23, 4:23-28; Gen.50:20). And the good he is creating out of the wreckage of this life is producing a glory that is all the more wonderful for having come through the violent impact of this age (see again Romans 8:18-24). It’s not just that he makes up for bad things that happen to us, like a loving but limited father might, apologizing for letting something difficult happen to his child but then buying her an ice cream to “make it all better.” No, the glory that comes out of our traumas literally transforms the suffering itself into eternal joy, a deeper and more profound joy than could ever have been experienced otherwise. Resurrection life, given to us by our risen and ascended Lord, is that joy. It is beyond our wildest imaginations.
Because Jesus is the Ascended Lord, great king David’s greater Son, at the controls of life, actively moving us toward inevitable glory, we live in the reality of the most famous psalm of all: David’s own 23rd psalm.
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.He makes me lie down in green pastures.He leads me beside still waters,He restores my soul…He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of deathI will fear no evil, for you are with me:Your rod and your staff, they comfort me.You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;You anoint my head with oil;My cup overflows…Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my lifeAnd I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever. So, my troubled, tired, traumatized Christian friend, take heart. Our Lord has overcome the world in ways we can hardly imagine (Jn.16:33). Just a Thought…Pastor RickTake NoteMyTCF Account If you consider yourself a part of the TCF family, then stay connected with a MyTCF account! You can manage your contact information, easily register for events and give securely online. Members can view the directory.
Visit trail.org and click “MyTCF Login” from the top menu bar. Need a login? CLICK HERE then follow the instructions.
Questions? firstname.lastname@example.org | 541.878.3501 ext709Coming UpMEN’S MINISTRYMen’s Prayer GatheringFriday Mornings6:30-7:30am
Join us in the outdoor Pavilion for our traditional weekly time of nourishment in the Word, a preview of what’s to come on Sunday morning, and devotional prayer time led by one of our Pastors or Elders.TRAIL TEENS FOR TRUTHNailed it! Cupcake Baking Competitionfor Teens in Middle and High School!
Saturday, April 17th, 10:00am – 2:30pmTrail Christian Fellowship Fireside Room Cost is $5 and includes lunch (Burgers and Hot dogs with chips and soda)Online registration is required (HERE) as well as a signed ‘On campus’ Teen Permission slip (downloadable HERE). Space is limited so register NOW! Middle School CampFor those entering 6th grade through 8th grade
July 5th – 9th @ Trail Christian Fellowship Enjoy tubing at Lost Creek, rafting on the Rogue, campfires, tent camping, great food, adventure, as well as worship and the Word!
Cost is $99 per person // Register HERE
(Permission slip required: downloadable HERE). Space is limited so register NOW!
Questions? Contact Rob Milton: 541.821.7261 or email@example.comCHILDREN’S MINISTRYRace Day is Sunday, May 2 Trail Christian Fellowship Worship Center
Age Brackets include: Cubbies(3-4 yr olds)Sparkies (K-2nd) T&T (3rd-6th)Teens/Adult (7th grade & up)
Build a Car is Saturday, April 24 9:00am – 12:00pm in the Youth Center
Final Car Check is Saturday, May 19:00am – 12:00pm in the Worship Center
Cars *must* be weighed and checked between April 24th and May 1stNO ENTRIES ON RACE DAY!
Reminder: New car kits must be purchased for this event. Previous entries cannot race. Cars kits are available for sale in the Youth Center through Saturday, April 24.
To sign up or for more information contact Aaron Bradley:541.538.9601 or firstname.lastname@example.orgDo you have a talent that kids love?
The TCF Children’s Ministry is looking for members who can contribute their skills of puppetry, mime, music, storytelling, ballooning, clowning, or (fill in the blank). With only a modest commitment of a couple of Sundays per year, God can use you in big ways in the lives of our kids!
If you can help, call Debbie Conley at 541.878.3501 or email@example.comWednesdays through May 26, 20216:30pm – 8:00pm
A club with a goal to reach boys and girls with the Gospel of Christ and train them to serve Him. At TCF it’s designed for kids 4 years up to 5th grade. Check schedule for theme nights and breaks. Visit trail.org to download a Parent Letter and schedule. There is a suggested donation to cover costs of materials but it’s not mandatory to participate.
Nursery and Children’s Program for 0-3 years old.
Awana registration is at capacity and is now closed.If your child is currently enrolled, please check the schedule for theme nights.
Debbie Conley: 541.261.2605AWANA at TCFWe need you!!
Awana volunteers make a difference because “Kids matter to God”
Each Wednesday night from 6 – 8pm, you could help a child learn scripture verses, be a Game Director, or help with check-In!
Kids need you to be part of their team
Contact Aaron Bradley 541.538.9601 or Debbie Conley 541.261.2605PRAYER MINISTRYPrayer Warriors by Email
If you would like to be a regular part of praying for the Children’s Ministry and receive an email prayer letter periodically to keep up with what God is doing with the next generation, email firstname.lastname@example.org to get on the list. This will be a blind copy email and your email address will not be shared with others.Debbie Conley: 541.878.3501YOUTH CLUBSTrail Life USAThursday, April 15, 6:30 – 8:00pm at TCF
Trail Life USA is a Christ-centered outdoor character development adventure program for boys and young men ages 5-17. TCF’s Trail Life troop meets twice a month on Thursdays from 6:30-8pm during the school year. For more information about the Trail Life USA organization, click HERE. For TCF’s Troop Information, and to confirm meeting times, contact Matthew Paradela: 541.625.0359American Heritage GirlsThursday, April 15, 6:30 – 8:00pm at TCFAmerican Heritage Girls is a faith-based character building program for girls ages 5-18. Girls learn leadership and team building skills while growing spiritually. TCF’s AHG troop meets twice a month on Thursdays from 6:30-8pm during the school year.