For 2017, the elders of Dean Road want the congregation to focus on "Being a Servant". We all know someone that is a giver. Not of things so much but of themselves. People that you know that would give to help others to their own detriment. These people truly reflect the love of Christ.
In Ruth 3:5, Ruth says to Naomi - "All that you say to me, I will do.” This is the congregation's theme for 2017. The thought is to encourage everyone to have an overall attitude of being a servant and putting others first and themselves second. In this verse, Ruth is telling Naomi, her mother-in-law, that she is dedicated to her and is there to serve her. Further on Ruth goes so far as to call herself a servant. That is the attitude we need to have and our studies this year are designed to help us achieve that goal. We believe that our members having the heart of a servant will help bring others to Christ.
Our Focus for Each Month
January: The Call to Serve Like Christ
For who is the greater, one who reclines at table or one who serves? Is it not the one who reclines at table? But I am among you as the one who serves.
February: The Call to be Humble like Christ
The greatest among you shall be your servant. Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.
March: The Call to be a Bondservant of Christ
Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.
April: Discipline Ourselves
For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.
May: Gaining Influence to Spread the Gospel
“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven."
June: What is at Stake? (Heaven & Hell)
“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left."
July: God's Grace
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong. I have been a fool! You forced me to it, for I ought to have been commended by you. For I was not at all inferior to these super-apostles, even though I am nothing. The signs of a true apostle were performed among you with utmost patience, with signs and wonders and mighty works.
~II Corinthians 12:9-12
August: Compassion for Others
Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.
September: Forgiveness for Others (and Ourselves)
For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
October: Treat Others as We Treat Ourselves
The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.
December: Weep with Those..., Rejoice with Those...
If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.
~I Corinthians 12:26