With so much uncertainty and hostility all around us, have you ever wondered, "What now?" Maybe, after seeing increased local and global persecution, you've thought, "What's a Christian to do?" Take heart—fellow believers in Thessalonica had similar thoughts in the first century, and the Apostle Paul, inspired by the Holy Spirit, wrote to encourage them how to live in their crumbling culture in light of their coming Christ. This September and October we will be gleaning these practical and powerful principles in our series, "While We Wait: Exhortations from 2 Thessalonians," digging our feet deep into endurance and obedience as we await our Lord's return.
At 6pm on Wednesdays, we offer the AWANA program for preschool and elementary aged children. After visiting the children's wing for check-in, our evening begins in the Worship Center with an opening celebration.
The Preschool portion of this program is called Cubbies, and will give your preschooler a chance to play fun games, memorize Bible verses, make crafts, and develop relationships with other preschoolers! Children must be at least 3 years old by September 15th and be potty trained to participate in our Cubbies program.
The elementary children are divided into Sparks (kindergarten – 2nd grade) and Truth & Training – T&T (3rd–5th grade) for the handbook and game time. Children memorize and recite Bible verses, share prayer requests and play fun games as teams.
All children can be picked up at 7:30pm in their assigned class areas. Please make sure you have your pick-up tag ready to show teachers.
We’d love to have you join us on Wednesday nights! Sign up your child or as a volunteer below:
August is coming soon! First Family Church would love to help our community with your school supply list! Bring your supply list on August 6th at 10am and get free school supplies! This is open to everyone!
FFCers, this is a great opportunity for our church to bless our community! Please help us by donating common school supplies between now and July 31st. Here is a list of common supplies:
- School glue and glue sticks (small and large)
- Crayons – 24 count
- Colored pencils – 24 count
- Red pens
- Washable markers – 8/set of classic colors (wide and fine tip)
- Highlighter marker – yellow & pack of 4 colors
- Dry erase markers (wide and fine point) – 4 pack
- Yellow #2 wooden pencils
- Eraser (pink and pencil top)
- Scissors – blunt & pointed tip
- Plastic, pocket folder (plain colors, no brads)
- Wide-rule spiral notebook – (plain color)
- Wide-rule loose leaf paper
- Wide-rule composition notebook
- White copy paper
- Ruled note cards – white (3 x 5)
- Sticky notes, any color (3 x 3)
- Supply box – hard plastic (8.5 x 5)
- Pencil bag or pouch
- One-inch three-Ring Binder – white with presentation cover (no designs)
- Gallon size plastic baggies – slider zipper
- Quart-size plastic baggies – slider zipper Snack size plastic baggies
- Ear buds
The Elders have some good news to share with FFC: we received a generous gift from a member to help with facility improvements. The next priority on our project list is our worship center. As you know, it is essentially in an unfinished state not too far removed from how it looked when it was used as an indoor soccer field.
We have received quotes for the project and have opted to go with 360 Construction, the firm that completed the second level of our student center. Ideally, we would like to complete the construction during the summer months, which means in the next 6–8 weeks.
Our plan right now is to finish the walls of the worship center, rebuild the stage area with permanent walls, add an additional double door to the east wall, repair and finish the ceiling, and paint the room. The cost of the project has been bid at approximately $65,000. The gift we received was for $55,000, and we have approximately $15,000 in a set aside account we have saved over the last couple of years from facility rental fees. This does not impact our expressed goal of building our general fund/savings during 2016-17. If you have any questions about the construction project, please contact R.J. Parks.
We will, Lord willing, begin construction this week! This will require some changes in our Sunday worship services during construction, beginning this Sunday, July 24th:
- During the construction project, our worship services will meet in the Youth Room on the second floor of the Student Center. There is elevator access from the first floor for those who need it. Apart from the change in location, all other aspects of the service will remain the same.
- To help accommodate the smaller space, we will ask all families with elementary-age children or below to check in their children immediately and take them to their classrooms, and not the worship service. If you have any questions about this aspect, please see one of our children’s ministry helpers at the check-in desk or contact Becky Doubleday.
We are excited to see this next phase of our building renovation completed, and are thankful for the funds provided to make this a reality sooner than later!
Join us for a live roundtable discussion on the end times spoken of in Revelation.
Guests include: Chris Eller, (Small Groups Pastor, FFC), Carlos Jerez (Campus Pastor, FFC Bondurant), Tim Lubinus (Exec. Director, BCI) Michael Mudlaff (Pastor, Westkirk Presbyterian Church), Todd Stiles (Lead Pastor, FFCA), and more!
Topics will include the different views of the end times, including specific attention to the Millennium, Christ's second coming, and the tribulation. Different approaches to interpretation, various understandings of the timing of Christ's return, q & a from the audience, plus much more! This event is a live recording of the Extra Point Podcast, FFC's audio resource.
Don't miss out!
Join us this August 12–15 for FFC Family Camp 2016! This is a great time to get away and enjoy fellowship and fun with your family and church family! Family Camp will once again be held at Hidden Acres Christian Center. You can sign up below!
Here are some activities you can expect to enjoy at Family Camp this year:
FAMILY LIFE CENTER (FLC)
Game rooms – ping pong, pool table, foosball
Indoor swimming pool (70’ x 30’ and 3’-5’ deep)
Bicycling Ultimate Frisbee
Sand Volleyball Octaball
Horse Shoes 9 Square
Geo Caching Hammocks
Mini Golf Airsoft
Playground Equipment Archery
Scavenger Hunt Crafts
Bring your lawn chairs & enjoy a family-friendly concert at the Ankeny Band Shell (located at Wagner Park), featuring Christian worship bands from the Ankeny and Bondurant Campuses of FFC.
The concert will be held on Saturday, July 9th, at 6pm.
The Ankeny Movie Theater will provide popcorn, and our church will provide bottled water. Join us for a fun night of worship, snacks, and music!
In both positive and negative ways, Revelation 2–3 describe seven of the historical churches of John's day. Yet, by application, there is much we can learn about our own day, even our own church. Journey with First Family to seven cities and seven churches, seeing how what was ancient is actually very current. Let's discover together that the way forward is actually the way backward, and that the biblical understanding of what God expects from his church never goes out of style.
We encourage you to read ahead in preparation for this series! You can read Revelation 2–3 in it's entirety below:
English Standard Version (ESV)
To the Church in Ephesus
2 “To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: ‘The words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand, who walks among the seven golden lampstands.
2 “‘I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear with those who are evil, but have tested those who call themselves apostles and are not, and found them to be false. 3 I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name's sake, and you have not grown weary. 4 But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. 5 Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent. 6 Yet this you have: you hate the works of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. 7 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who conquers I will grant to eat of the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.’
To the Church in Smyrna
8 “And to the angel of the church in Smyrna write: ‘The words of the first and the last, who died and came to life.
9 “‘I know your tribulation and your poverty (but you are rich) and the slander[a] of those who say that they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan. 10 Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and for ten days you will have tribulation. Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life. 11 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. The one who conquers will not be hurt by the second death.’
To the Church in Pergamum
12 “And to the angel of the church in Pergamum write: ‘The words of him who has the sharp two-edged sword.
13 “‘I know where you dwell, where Satan's throne is. Yet you hold fast my name, and you did not deny my faith[b] even in the days of Antipas my faithful witness, who was killed among you, where Satan dwells. 14 But I have a few things against you: you have some there who hold the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to put a stumbling block before the sons of Israel, so that they might eat food sacrificed to idols and practice sexual immorality. 15 So also you have some who hold the teaching of the Nicolaitans. 16 Therefore repent. If not, I will come to you soon and war against them with the sword of my mouth. 17 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who conquers I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, with a new name written on the stone that no one knows except the one who receives it.’
To the Church in Thyatira
18 “And to the angel of the church in Thyatira write: ‘The words of the Son of God, who has eyes like a flame of fire, and whose feet are like burnished bronze.
19 “‘I know your works, your love and faith and service and patient endurance, and that your latter works exceed the first. 20 But I have this against you, that you tolerate that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess and is teaching and seducing my servants[c] to practice sexual immorality and to eat food sacrificed to idols. 21 I gave her time to repent, but she refuses to repent of her sexual immorality. 22 Behold, I will throw her onto a sickbed, and those who commit adultery with her I will throw into great tribulation, unless they repent of her works,23 and I will strike her children dead. And all the churches will know that I am he who searches mind and heart, and I will give to each of you according to your works. 24 But to the rest of you in Thyatira, who do not hold this teaching, who have not learned what some call the deep things of Satan, to you I say, I do not lay on you any other burden. 25 Only hold fast what you have until I come. 26 The one who conquers and who keeps my works until the end, to him I will give authority over the nations, 27 and he will rule them with a rod of iron, as when earthen pots are broken in pieces, even as I myself have received authority from my Father.28 And I will give him the morning star. 29 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’
To the Church in Sardis
3 “And to the angel of the church in Sardis write: ‘The words of him who has the seven spirits of God and the seven stars.
“‘I know your works. You have the reputation of being alive, but you are dead.2 Wake up, and strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your works complete in the sight of my God. 3 Remember, then, what you received and heard. Keep it, and repent. If you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come against you. 4 Yet you have still a few names in Sardis, people who have not soiled their garments, and they will walk with me in white, for they are worthy. 5 The one who conquers will be clothed thus in white garments, and I will never blot his name out of the book of life. I will confess his name before my Father and before his angels. 6 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’
To the Church in Philadelphia
7 “And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write: ‘The words of the holy one, the true one, who has the key of David, who opens and no one will shut, who shuts and no one opens.
8 “‘I know your works. Behold, I have set before you an open door, which no one is able to shut. I know that you have but little power, and yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name. 9 Behold, I will make those of the synagogue of Satan who say that they are Jews and are not, but lie—behold, I will make them come and bow down before your feet, and they will learn that I have loved you.10 Because you have kept my word about patient endurance, I will keep you from the hour of trial that is coming on the whole world, to try those who dwell on the earth. 11 I am coming soon. Hold fast what you have, so that no one may seize your crown. 12 The one who conquers, I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God. Never shall he go out of it, and I will write on him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which comes down from my God out of heaven, and my own new name. 13 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’
To the Church in Laodicea
14 “And to the angel of the church in Laodicea write: ‘The words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of God's creation.
15 “‘I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot! 16 So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth. 17 For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked. 18 I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, so that you may be rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness may not be seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, so that you may see. 19 Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent. 20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me. 21 The one who conquers, I will grant him to sit with me on my throne, as I also conquered and sat down with my Father on his throne. 22 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’”