Sunday, June 12, 2016



Ah-h-h the joys of living in the foothills in the springtime.  The good Lord’s finest beauty with a lush green carpet covering the hills and wild flowers and garden flowers bursting forth in their beauty with multicolored landscapes as early spring matures into late spring, and finally the ‘Farewell to Spring’ flower starts to appear.  The sunrises and sunsets are a spectacular array of God’s handiwork.  Realtors know this is the best time of the year to buy or sell a house with so much beauty to behold.  Then there are the musical sounds of the many birds living here and migrating through as well as the chorus of frogs and toads each evening, with a few coyote howls thrown in.  But the true sounds of the hills at this time of the year are weed-whackers, chain saws and lawn mowers, with our neighbors trying to keep the onslaught of the growing weeds and dying trees back at a safe distance from their home.  Driving up into the hills, enjoying the many beautiful vistas, with splotches of white, yellow, orange and lavender, fluffy clouds dotting the sky, majestic mountains rising in the sun, we know we are at home, safe and sound in our refuge from the city life … Live in such a way that those who know you, but don’t know God, will come to know God because they know you  …  Don’t be ashamed of your story, it just might inspire someone  …  The ladies of Helping Hands are busy with plans for our greatly anticipated Annual Ladies Spring Tea to be held here at Hilltop Chapel on May 7, 2016, starting at 2 PM.  Our tea is always very well attended and enjoyed by all, with good fellowship, friends, food, entertainment, and a fashion show.  Ladies, the invitation is out and you are always welcome, so save the date on your calendars, bring a friend or two and join us …   Also, remember Mother’s Day and honor your mother with a lovely orchid corsage provided by Right to Life of Central Valley through Mike Gage.  The corsages will be available during the Spring Tea and at the Mother’s Day Sunday Worship Service.  The Western Gospel Trio “Reliance” will be entertaining us for Mother’s Day.  We will also be having a drawing for gifts to be given to mothers so make plans to attend … Pastor Rod and Lesley took a well-deserved vacation back east in April, and relaxed and enjoyed visiting with family and friends, the lovely scenery, the golf courses and the many memorable moments.  So glad to have them back home.  In their absence, we had three guest speakers in April, Gary Levrets, Isidro Bruno and Tony Heredia.  Gary spoke about the nature of water and that living waters through the death of the Son equal everlasting life.  “The Water of Life flows through us, transforms us and refreshes our soul.”  Isidro Bruno gave an inspirational talk about his prayer for us to have a heart for the Lord’s direction and guidance in our lives.  Tony Heredia told us how the “Brown Bag Ministry has changed to the “Ziplock Bag Ministry” where many of the items are purchased locally in Mexico.  His mission team continues to build churches in remote villages and minister to the people.  They are celebrating 47 years of missionary work in Latin America …  Be thankful for the bad things in life, for they opened your eyes to the good things you weren’t paying attention to before  …  With each sunrise we start anew.  But don’t you wish sometimes it would be nice if whenever we mess up our life we could simply press ‘Ctrl Alt Delete’ and start all over again?  …