Upcoming Holiday Events and Schedule
- Christmas Eve Service| December 24 @ 5pm
- No Service| December 25
- No Service| January 1
- Service Resumes | January 8
- Starting Point | January 8
- Friday Morning Prayer | Every Friday
Advent Devotional: Christ
Wild nights, Silent mornings
I won’t be the first to introduce a spoiler to a universally loved Christmas hymn, “Silent Night”. It’s one of my favorites, but it can’t accurately depict that historic night in a manger that changed the course of human history.
I have been present for both of my son’s birth. Even with exceptional medical expertise and a wife who’s a physician and knows everything that’s happening, it’s still a little wild in the delivery room. Imagine that experience without doctors, labor and delivery nurses, and sterile hospital rooms. Add a cow, sheep, and some kid dressed in a bed sheet. (Wait, those Christmas pageants are accurate, right?) There’s no way that night was silent.
Silent night, holy night
All is calm, all is bright
If you think about it, the very fact we imagine the night to be silent takes away from the profundity of the moment. God comes in a moment of intense pain, fear, and beauty. Mary’s birth was not silent because it was childbirth. Jesus didn’t appear into the world; he came into the world my boys did, the way we all do. So for us to relate to Mary as a mother, we need to imagine an actual birth; to imagine Jesus as a real man, we need to imagine a wild night of commotion, anticipation, and fear.
I’m confident the silent night we imagine is false, but I believe there was a silent morning. After all the commotion and confirmation that Mary and baby Jesus were healthy, she swaddled his little body. Before the visitors and frankincense (whatever that is), Mary held Jesus, and Joseph looked on. Before the reality of the Messiah’s birth sunk in, I imagine Mary holding her baby, worshipping the majesty of God.
I taught our 4th-6th graders this past week. First, we discussed peace and the season of advent. Then, I shared my favorite peaceful space, my home, on Christmas morning before the kids woke up. Christmas Eve is a hectic time of friends, family, and too much food. But there’s a small window of time in the morning before the sun rises where I make a cup of coffee, turn on the Christmas lights, and light our Christ candle.
It’s at that moment I imagine the manger. I join Mary and worship the majesty of God. I invite the Holy Spirit to lead the day and wake my family in righteousness, and I marvel at the incarnation. God is becoming a man like my sons were born years ago.
I pray you find a peaceful moment amid these wild days. I pray when we sing “Silent Night”, still one of my favorites, we give a little smirking smile and think, “I bet the morning was silent but that night was wild, the night that changed the world.”
Grace & peace,
Christmas Eve Service
Join us at 5 PM Saturday for our Christmas Eve service at The Christian School at Castle Hills. We will have cookies before service at 4:30 PM followed by service at 5 PM. We hope to see you there!
We are excited to share The Park Communities 2022 Annual Report. 2022 for The Park Community has been a year of committing to new rhythms, gathering weekly in person and on-line for worship, launching new organizations for the city, meeting new families and investing deeply in our neighborhoods. This has been a year of huge steps of faith that we trust will bear fruit in the years to come. We hope you will take some time to read through this year’s Annul Report.
Financial Update 2022
YTD thru Oct Actual Giving = $391,113
YTD thru Oct Budgeted Giving = $483,339
Over/(Under) Budget Amount = ($92,226)
As we end the year, we invite you to consider a financial gift to the Park. There are many things to celebrate about 2022 as well as look forward to in 2023. Check out our annual report here. It may also be helpful to know that 20% of the annual church budget is realized in the month of December each year. Would you help launch us into next year? Any gift received or postmarked on or before December 31 will be tax deductible.
You can give in the following ways:
Online via Breeze
Mail a check:
PO BOX 781669
SA TX 78278
Thank you for your generosity!
Daily Scripture Reading
We hope you are continuing to join us in daily scripture reading. We long to see a work of God in our church and in our city. What might the Spirit do in us if we are committed to daily reading together? Join us and let’s see what God will do.
The passages are chosen to coincide with our sermon series. The reading plan is set up so that there’s no “catching up” to do. If you miss a day, just pick up on the next one! Follow along with the readings using a Bible or The Park App or online. Jump in and get started! Establish a regular time and place to help you get into a prayerful state of mind more consistently.
Prayer at The Park
If you have a prayer request you would like us to pray for, we are available for prayer on Sunday morning during service. We also have a way for you to submit prayer request at any time via our Church Form. Prayer request can be confidential or can be shared with our staff to be prayed over. Click here to submit a prayer request.
If you are in need of counseling of any sort, mentoring, assistance meeting a need, or prayer, we want to come along side you to assist in these things. To find out more on our Care Ministry you can click here.
Stay in Contact
If you are experiencing any hardships we want to be there to support you. If you have questions or needs we can help with, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sunday Morning Live-Streaming
If you will be joining us online, click here to view the live-stream service.