Greetings First Met,
Grace and peace to you and your family this Christmas season! Lady O and I want to express our sincere appreciation for your love, leadership and continued membership here at First Met. Your commitment to serve, promote and attend worship services/events throughout the year has made First Met a strong light in this community. We’ve experienced many mountain top moments this year, along with a few valleys. Through it all God has sustained us and caused all things to work together for our good. With his grace and favor we are finishing strong! We give all Glory to God!
As we prepare for 2016, I see God moving us towards something “Big”, so I want to challenge you to get ready. In reviewing the blessings God has given to us personally and as a church family, I have had to look at our giving and realize it has been a challenge for many of our members. We have a very strong core group of members who are committed tithers, but the majority of our members are non-tithers and a good group are not even good givers. With God’s favor and wisdom, we have remained strong! I don’t believe our giving for 2015 is an accurate reflection of how great God has been to us. While I am not one to ask for money, nor do I believe in strong tactics to get members to give, I do believe it is my responsibility as your Pastor to make you aware of your giving, teach you biblical truths and compel you to change your ways and honor God. God is going to do Big things, but we must do Big things with what He gives us.
So as we close this year and prepare for 2016 there are a few things I must ask of you: 1. Reflect on your giving last year and compare what you gave to what you should have given. This is easy. If you make 60, 000 dollars a year, your giving should be at least 6,000.00 by the end of December. 2. Pray and give God what is due Him. So simply put, give a gift to your church that reflects God’s blessings to you. If you are a tither, Lady O and I sincerely thank you for your steadfast support. We could have not made it without you! I am asking that you pray and give a gift that honors God. First Met, we must end the year strong and honorably. In 2016, We want God to bless us, bless our families, and bless our church. We cannot rob God and expect Him to bless us, so let’s honor God with our time, talent and treasure. Something Big is coming our way so we must Get Ready!
We have had a wonderful year, but the truth is we faced some giving challenges such as low giving and two months of stormy weather which caused extremely low attendance on those Sundays. When the majority of members are absent and forget to send in their tithes and offerings, the budget is not met. This process places the church in a position of trying to make up and catch up with the budget. Just like your household, the church needs a set amount of funds to function and meet the budgeted monthly expenses. When you are absent or when you forget to give, the bills still have to be paid. I am asking you to commit to giving a set amount every month to your church home. We create the budget based on expected funds from our members, therefore I am asking each of you to put God first in your giving by setting up automatic bill pay online: so when you are absent your church’s budget will be met. We must make sure God’s House is always taken care of. This honors God! “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and all these things will be added unto you. Close the year with a steadfast giving attitude. Finish Strong”!
During the year, some of you became relaxed in your financial commitment to the kingdom of God. Sometimes distractions or devastation’s happen in our lives. Whatever the case, the past cannot be relived. Even though you missed some months in your giving, you still have December to make up and catch up, so Finish strong! In the next few weeks give in a manner that pleases the Lord. ‘Don’t give it all to the mall! Finish strong!
Christmas is all about giving. God saw the great need of mankind and gave His only begotten Son to us. “For God so loved the world that he gave His only Son…” (John 3:16) On the 25th of December, we celebrate the birth of Jesus the Christ. Why not bring a special gift to the Lord this season? After, all it’s His birthday. Bring Him a gift worthy of who He is to you and all mankind. “And when they had come into the house, they saw the young Child with Mary His mother, and fell down and worshiped Him. And when they opened their treasures, they presented gifts to Him: gold, frankincense, and myrrh.” (Matthew 2:11)
December is going to be an exciting month at First Met. Our young people with present a special Christmas worship on the 13th at both services. On Wednesday the 16th at 7:30 pm, we have our Annual Church Conference. The theme for the meeting is: God’s Up to Something Big! You’ll want to be present to hear and see what we expect God to do in 2016 with Discipleship, Evangelism, Youth, Marriages, Vision 2020, Facilities, Budget and Leadership. Don’t miss the Church Conference!
First Met has always been a giving church to others. This year, we sent Peanut Butter and built four homes for Haiti, we gave to Single Mothers, College Students, teachers, peace officers, back to school supplies, … Oh, don’t forget our big outreach to the community giving toys to needy families and: “Snow on the Beltway.” I know you will continue to give again this year. Finish Strong!
We are excited to bring to our campus again the Ensemble Theater’s production of “What Child is This?” on the 20th at 7 pm. So get here early and be in your seats for a night to remember. On Christmas Day at 10 am,, let’s gather to worship our savior on His Big Day. Each year our Christmas worship is so mystical and magnificent. It is a tradition you’ll want to make and keep. Your family will be so blessed!
December will close the year with our “Watchnight” Service, preceded by our Chili and Gumbo cook off/feast. Eating starts at 8 pm and worship at 10. See you in church this December.
The 1st Sunday Worship Service at Mission of Yahweh is progressing well. The effort is being led by Elder Louis Robinson & Deaconess Gloria Robinson. Thus far, Minister Dwayne McGary, Deaconess Gloria and Elder Robinson have conducted the service on Sunday night.
The worship services are held in the Chapel by the Community Garden. We have an average of 24 adults and 5 children that attend the service. There is good participation from the group, as 2 women sang songs and several gave testimonies on how God is Blessing their lives and families.
Minister McGary “Spoken Word” came from Psalms 1: 1-6, titled “Staying Focus”. The women appear to be inspired, appreciative and excited about First Meth’s being involved and providing spiritual worship service at the Mission.
Deaconess Gloria and Elder Robinson have been invited to attend “The Mission of Yahweh’s First Annual Volunteer Celebration” on September 24, 2015 and plan to attend.
Sunday, June 28th, First Met Member Sister Bethy Pierre placed as 2nd Runner-Up in the Miss Caribbean Houston Pagent. The pageant feature many talented women from Houston Texas, with Caribbean roots.
Bethy,a native of The Republic of Haiti, was well decorated this night, also winning Miss Photogenic and Miss Amity. Member, Sister Genevive Brent (who’s photographs are featured) said of Sister Pierre, “You WOWED ALL of us last night with your amazing talents, beauty, grace, confidence, and sophistication.” She continued, “You looked AMAZING in everything that you did!! You exhibited EXCELLENCE….”
Bethy has the honor of being the first of her family to graduate from High School. She continued her education at the University of Florida, where she obtained an undergraduate degree in Public Relations, and a graduate degree in Entrepreneurship.
At First Met, Sister Pierre has been a amazing addition to the young adult ministry, serving with the praise team, leadership of young adults, Hebrew’s Cafe’ and Mentoring the Teens. We are proud to call her a sister in Christ, and excited about her representation of not only her country, but the Kingdom of God! Way to go Bethy!
December 22, the historic Ensemble Theater will be performing Black Nativity at First Met, The Place Where You Belong! The performance will be in the sanctuary of First Met at 7 pm. The tickets for seats can be obtained by registering online (Tickets can be picked up in the front office). The $15 cost for the performance is being covered by First Met; thus the community can access this message of love for free.
Black Nativity is a retelling of the classic Nativity story by writer Langston Hughes. It contained an all -black cast, which performed traditional gospel style Christmas Carols, and a few additional songs that were written specifically for the show.
Black Nativity was one of the first plays written by an African-American, and was first performed on December 11, 1961. The show has annually been performed in Boston, Massachusetts, at Tremont Temple since 1969.
The Ensemble Theater was founded by the late George Hawkins in 1976. It was created to preserve the artistic expression and diversity in the arts. The theater is over 35 years old, and has become one of Houston’s top historical institutions.
In 2012, the first ever “It’s Snowing on the Beltway” was held at First Met, The Place Where You Belong on December 22nd. The event, a vision of Lady O, Executive Pastor of First Met, was brought to life by a concerted effort from the You Belong Food Pantry and the Young Adult Ministry of First Met.
Pounds of snow were cast across the Infant Development Center playground; allowing kids of ages ranging from toddlers to 12 years of age to enjoy snow living. Children made snow men and snow angels, giving them a moment to form childhood memories and just for the moment, enjoy being children.
While playing, the kids were able to share moments with the Senior Pastor of First Met, Dr. John Ogletree, Jr. Dr. Ogletree, a Trustee on the Cypress Fairbanks Independent School District Board, took time to pour into the lives of all present, praying and playing; building moments that will never be lost.
The Young Adult Ministry served hot chocolate and snacks, some of which were donated by Cook Middle School. Later, the kids were welcomed by a surprised guest, Santa himself. Santa took pictures with all present and encouraged the children to enjoy the days of their youth and to never loose hope.
Dates for the 2013 It’s Snowing on the Beltway will follow soon. You can receive notification by following us on Twitter at FirstMetChurch , Instagram at 1stMetChurch or Tumbler at 1stMetChurch, as well as Facebook and Foursquare.