The United Methodist Church Northwest Confernce
3403 21st St. Lubbock, TX 794110-1213
(806) 796-1336 Fax: (806) 797-9215
SOME GOOD GUIDELINES FOR GENERAL/JURSIDICTIONAL CONFERENCE AND FOR OUR COUNTRIES' ELECTIONS
As I struggled to understand, "what makes a good leader," whether for the church (as we elect bishops) or for the country (as we elect a president); I came across the following article which shared some thoughts by Dr. J. Rufus Fears. I believe there are some very good directives for each of us to think about and as we make
decisions. Also, these might be great guidelines for anyone who finds they are elect to a leadership role.
Richard W. Edwards
Dr. J. Rufus Fears, professor of an incredibly manly subject: "The History of Freedom ," emphasized to his students that a politician and a statesman are not the same thing. A statesman, Fears argues, is not a tyrant; but is the free leader of a free people and as the leader, must possess four critical qualities:
1. A Bedrock of Principles
- A bedrock of principles
- A moral compass
- A vision
- The ability to build a consensus to achieve that vision
The statesman builds a platform on a foundation of firm, unchanging, fundamental truths. These are the things one believes at one's very core, one's overarching philosophy. Just as in the foundation of a house, storms may buffet the structure, opposition and challenges may arise, times will change, but the foundation remains. A statesman may change the details of one's policies and methods for achieving those policies, but only inasmuch as those short-term tactics of expediency serve the purpose of furthering one's bedrock of principles in the long run.
2. A Moral Compass
Dr. Fears argues that the modern politician makes decisions by using "antennae." One puts one's feelers out there to gauge the public mood. Once one figures out which way the wind is blowing, one then shapes one's self and one's message to give the people exactly what they want. But as Dr. Fears would hammer home again and again to us: A statesman does not govern by public opinion polls.
No, the true statesman makes decisions by following the dictates of one's own moral compass. One is not a relativist; one believes in absolute truths, and one's moral compass is rooted in a sense of absolute right and absolute wrong. When something is wrong, one plainly says it is wrong and does everything in one's power to fight against it. When something is right, one is willing to overcome any opposition to preserve and spread it. The statesman is ambitious and must be able to obtain a position of power—but there are things one simply will and will not do to get to the top. A statesman is a person of integrity; who speaks the truth. A statesman leads by moral authority and represents all that is the best in one's countrymen.
3. A Vision
A statesman has a clear vision of what their country and their people can become. The statesman knows where they want to take their people and what it will take to get there.
Fears argues that a statesman's foresight is one of their most important qualities, as the statesman must be able to recognize problems on the horizon and be able to come up with solutions that are good not only for the short-term, but for the long-term as well. The statesman keeps in mind not only the here and now, but the world future generations will inherit.
4. The Ability to Build a Consensus to Achieve That Vision
A politician may have a bedrock of principles, a moral compass, and a vision, but if the politician lacks the ability to build a consensus around one's vision, their efforts to change policies, laws, and the course of history will largely be in vain.
A statesman, who again is a free leader of a free people, must enlist those who serve with then in the government to support their initiatives, and their willingness to do so rests on the pressure they feel from their constituents to align themselves with the statesman's vision. Thus, a statesman's success in building a consensus ultimately hinges on their ability to convince their countrymen of the soundness of their philosophy.
To win their hearts, the statesman does not use slick advertisements and PR campaigns. Ads and propaganda, Fears argues, are the tools of the despot. Rather, the statesman harnesses the power of the written, and especially the spoken word. The statesman is master orator. The statesman's lifelong study of great books and the lessons of history allow the statesman to speak to the people in intelligent, potent, well-reasoned arguments.
Because a statesman follows their moral compass instead of opinion polls, the statesman's ideas are often initially out of step with the public mood. But instead of tailoring their rhetoric to that mood, the statesman speaks to the very best within their countrymen. The statesman understands that while their ideals may be deeply buried, powerful rhetoric can bring them forth and activate them. The strength of the statesman's words comes from the fact that the statesman actually believes what the statesman says. And the statesman does not make their countrymen's hearts soar and burn with empty promises; he keeps his word and does what he says he will do.
Sympathy is extended to Ted & Jody Wilson on the loss of Ted's, Elton father. Ted is a retired member of our Conference.
- Sympathy is extended to Jim Garrett & family on the loss Jim's wife, Betty. Jim is a retired member of our Conference.
- Merrial Abbott, a retired member of our Conference, is in rehab following hospitalization.
- Mary Parks, the surviving spouse of Bruce Parks, has been experiencing health problems.
AROUND THE DISTRICT:
Littlefield UMC hosted The Power Team 2.0 live on stage February 10th-14th. The Power Team is a group of athletes that use feats of strength to share the gospel. This event was geared towards reaching the Littlefield community and it was a success!
The first night they had about 300 people attend. But more importantly, that first night they had 16 first time commitments, 26 recommitments, and 10 people who feel led to ministry. There were several people who took Life Change books and it is estimated that around 90 people responded all together on the first night!
The second night more than 400 were in attendance and around 325 the third night. More than 75 people came together to help with the event. The response was overwhelming by parents and youth. If you would like to learn more about this event, feel free to reach out to Littlefield UMC! http://www.seethepowerteam.com
The Well Church has had a great start to 2016. We moved into the Science Spectrum for our worship services and rented an office space right next door. Each week we have seen new people join us for worship, we've had more people return to worship, and thus we are growing! I'd ask that you keep us in your prayers as we continue to reach new people for Jesus in Lubbock.
Also, if possible, we could use your help. Last year we hosted a GARAGE FREE (where we gave away items to the public for free). We are planning to do this again on Easter morning, March 27th, to celebrate that God gave us Jesus at no cost to us and to engage with people that aren't in church on Easter morning. If you, or anyone in your church has: stuff, junk, or whatever that you don't want/need anymore (and is still in decent condition) we'd love to take it off your hands. Call/text/e-mail Dustin at 806-773-1748 or dustin@thewellLBK.org. Thanks!
Grace and Peace,
Pastor, The Well Church
St. Luke's UMC:
We are gearing up for another year of mission work, and would welcome anyone to participate in the following projects: -Homebuilding with Proyecto Abrigo in Mexico, July 26-30th: Looking for 70 people to build 7 houses for families in need. Cost: $150/person, Project Cost: $3200/house. Requirements: passport, work ethic, Youth-aged and older
-Mission trip to Greece and Israel, Dates TBD: 10-day trip in Greece serving refugees and in Israel doing outreach, as well as seeing the ancient Christian sights in both countries. Details will follow.
-Great Commission Fellowship: An international student outreach group filled with future foreign leaders hungry to learn the Bible. Meets Thursdays at 5:00pm at our Central Campus. Always needing volunteers and cook teams.
Ceta Canyon has announced their 2016 schedules and camp fees. The early deadline is April 15 to receive a $15 discount. Go to the Ceta Canyon site for more information and to register your child/children.
The following was received from Rev. Tom Carter & Olton FUMC
Prayer Breakfast @ 7:00 a.m. - Breakfast, devotional & prayer.
Confirmation Class - 4 - 6 p.m.
Junior High Youth - 6:00 P.M.
Adult Bible Study - "Hard to Dance With the Devil on Your Back" - 6:00 p.m.
Meal - 7:00 p.m.
Senior High Youth - 7:30 p.m.
Adult Bible Study - "War Room" - 5:00 p.m.
Spring Break - 3/14 - 3/18
3/20 - Palm Sunday - Celebration of Jesus' entry into Jerusalem - 9:30 a.m. with the waving of Palms as Jesus arrives at the church on horseback.
3/24 - Maundy Thursday Worship & Communion - 6:30 p.m.
3/27 - Easter Sunday - Children's Easter egg hunt during Sunday school hour.
3/28 - "Backpack 4 Kids" planning meeting @ 5:30 p.m. at Olton School Cafeteria
Upcoming Events for Tulia FUMC
March 2nd UMW General Meeting 9:30 a.m.
March 3rd Men's Breakfast 7:00 a.m.
March 18th Annual Fish Fry 5:30 p.m.- 7:00 p.m. $7 per person catfish, coleslaw, beans, hush-puppies & cobbler @ Tulia FUMC Fellowship Hall carry outs available - you can call ahead 806-995-3713
March 24th Maundy Thursday Service 6:00 p.m.
March 25th Good Friday luncheon and service 12:00 p.m.
FUMC Hereford prayed with 30 persons on Ash Wednesday. For the second year Prayer Partners were available at curbside, in front of the church, to pray for persons and administer the ashes for those who desired. Prayer requests ranged from illness, to depression to needing a closer walk with Christ to unity in the community. In addition each person received a pen and a printed reminder that the church was praying for them. A list of needs is then given to one of the church's prayer team for on going prayer.
FUMC Hereford will host a brisket dinner with all the fixins, homemade cobbler and homemade bread, on Sunday, March 6th from 11-1 in the fellowship hall. Admission is by donation with proceeds going toward the purchase of a new Carillon. The existing Carillon is over 30 years old and only works intermittently. the new system will have over 450 pre-loaded songs in digital format with ability to expand as needed.
FUMC Hereford will hold Easter services on Sunday, March 27th. A SON-rise service at 7:30 will be held outdoors at 5th and Main in Hereford (inside if inclement weather); an Easter egg hunt for children at 10am and the Resurrection Celebration at 10:45 featuring a brass ensemble, the sanctuary choir and an arrangement of the Hallelujah Chorus. The message will focus on Luke 24 and the theme "Hide and Seek".
EQUIPMENT NEEDED: Bethel UMC in Abilene is in need of a commercial stove and kitchen equipment. If you would like to make a donation, please call Bethel UMC at:
325-320-6386 and speak with Pastor Marcy Garza.
Wesley Foundation Happenings!
We just completed our annual Phone-A-Thon where we contacted over 3000 people on our mailing list to build relationships and ask for pledges for 2016. We had a good response and so thankful for God always providing for our ministry.
We have a team of 30 going to Haiti over spring break, we are asking for prayers for safety, to serve and reach the Haitian people and the remaining funds to come in.
Over 60 International students are coming weekly to the bible study/meal/small groups and hearing the gospel for the first time, its so exciting!
Saltshaker has 35 students coming weekly and learning about Basic Christianity.
Bathos small groups are discussing mercy and justice each week, there are 5 groups who meet various times and days.
Our Underground worship service is going well and studying James.
We cannot express our thanks and gratitude for your prayers and your support to our campus ministry, know that great things are happening and God is moving in the lives of students on the campus of Texas Tech!
Penny Wilson, Director of Development & Administration
March 1-3: Appointive Cabinet, Conference Office
March 5: Lubbock District , Conference BBOPHB Presentation, Conference Office
March 8-10: Appointive Cabinet, Albuquerque
March 14: Lubbock District Nominations Committee Meeting, District Office
March 15-17: Appointive Cabinet, Conference Office
March 18: NWTX Conference Nominations Committee Meeting, Conference Office
March 29-31: Appointive Cabinet, Albuquerque