Last Sunday, we were privileged to witness the baptisms of four individuals within our congregation. Here at RBC, we believe that baptism is a public declaration of faith and allegiance to Jesus Christ. Though baptism is not required for salvation, it is an outward expression of an inward spiritual reality – it’s a visible picture of what Jesus has done for those who place their faith in Him as Lord and Savior. Baptism illustrates for us His death & resurrection, the washing away of our sin, and the new life we have in Christ.
What an honor to rejoice with Bella, Corey, Jack and Karen as they proclaimed their allegiance to Jesus through baptism last Sunday! If you are interested in learning more about baptism or being baptized at RBC, click here.
This past Sunday evening a group of more than 60 adults and children from our congregation came together to bless the neighborhood behind the church with a gift of Christmas carols.
Before heading out we stopped for a moment and prayed together, “Lord, we thank you that for Jesus and the good news of His coming. We thank you that we can sing of the joy we have in Him. We ask that you would use our simple gift of song tonight to touch someone who needs to hear from you. Amen.” At that we started off. How could we have known that our prayer would be answered at the very first house at which we sang. We received the following email that very same evening from that neighbor.
To you carolers at Reston Bible:
Y’all came caroling through the Cascades Park neighborhood tonight. You rang my doorbell, and I opened the garage door and came and sang with you. I’m a believer, also, and your caroling was a warm reminder of Christmas. Thank you for coming! I thought you’d be encouraged by this:
Your caroling was a catalyst to me sharing my testimony with my roommate. I’ve been a believer for years, and lived with this guy for years. But I’ve always been hesitant to talk about Christ with him. When you came caroling, I went upstairs, joyful in the Spirit, and spent the next two hours talking with him about my testimony, which I hope will be the first of many conversations.
Thank you for spreading Christ’s love and message through song. You have effects that you’re not aware of, and I want to give you a glimpse of one of those effects while at the same time saying, “Thank you!” Glory to Christ the King!”
May the Lord use you as an instrument of His love this Christmas and always!
We just can’t wait to have Dr. Tim Kimmel at our RBC Marriage Conference next month! Here is a note from Dr. Kimmel that tells you a little more about the time we’ll spend together.
Don’t forget to register before Christmas to save an extra $10!
Hi RBC Couples!
I’m so excited to be with you for the Grace Filled Marriage event at the end of January! I can’t wait to tell you about the secret ingredient that can radically improve your marriage. I’ll teach you how to super-charge your communication, conflict resolution, spiritual connection and sex life with the pivotal quality that so many loving marriages lack…GRACE!
This Christmas, give your spouse and family a gift that will echo long into the future! Investing in your marriage is a gift to your spouse and yourself, but don’t forget that having a lasting, healthy marriage is the ultimate gift to your kids and grandkids. So much of their future success, happiness, relationships and spiritual journey rises or falls on the legacy your marriage leaves for them. A grace-filled marriage will change yourworld and theirs for good!
Hope to see you there!
We want so give a huge THANK YOU to all who donated of their time and resources to make the Guilford Elementary School’s Community Thanksgiving Dinner a huge success. Our congregation donated over 90 pies and 1000 servings of stuffing. We also had 12 volunteers who helped serve the families by pouring drinks and carrying trays for moms with lots of small children. This was the largest Thanksgiving Dinner that Guilford has hosted to date, with over 900 people enjoying traditional North American Thanksgiving foods, many for the first time. Parents who often don’t have the resources to feed their families an abundant meal like this were truly grateful. We are thankful for you, our generous congregation and our faithful God who allows us to serve these families and staff at Guilford Elementary.
“I will remember the deeds of the LORD, I will ponder all Your work and meditate on your mighty deeds.” – Psalm 77:11-12
Our Annual Report is not a list of our accomplishments, but rather a recounting of some of the great things God has done in us, for us and through us over the past year.
We hope you’ll take some time to read through it, remember the mighty deeds of our great God, and be moved to deeper gratitude and trust in our great Savior.
For over 20 years, the youth ministry has run the First Fruits project the Saturday before Thanksgiving. Every year, we raise money by raking leaves and doing other jobs throughout the day. That evening, we purchase lots of food and deliver the food to families in need in our community. This year, with an army of over 650 workers, we raised over $43,000 to provide food for over 100 families. We were also able to provide college scholarships to five local high school seniors.
Because we have been doing this for so many years, it is easy to just assume numbers like these will happen. But every year God does something that just makes us realize it is His work and His plan, not ours.
First, this year we had over 200 students from Parkview and Herndon High School sign up to work with us. These students have no affiliation with RBC, but the schools announced the project and they came to work with us. As a youth ministry, we are always trying to think of creative ways to reach out with the truth and hope of the Gospel to the students around us, and it’s so cool how God has taken something we designed to care for those in physical need and open so many doors for us to tell so many students about their greatest spiritual need. We never had a “strategic plan” or “vision” to turn First Fruits into an outreach, but it is now our biggest outreach of the year. Please pray for the hundreds who heard the Gospel at First Fruits.
Second, God orchestrated several food deliveries in ways that only He could. To identify many of the families we assist, we work through parent liaisons at several local public schools. We seek families that are experiencing hardships, but not currently being helped. These families are then randomly assigned to one of our 32 teams.
This year, as one team was entering the home of the family they were delivering to, the face of a young girl and her parents lit up. They were excited not for the food, but that one of the people delivering the food was the girl’s preschool teacher from several years prior. This instantly broke the ice and allowed for a powerful opportunity to share the love of Christ. When a group of strangers walk into someone’s home with bags of food and gifts, it can be awkward. But God, in providentially working out the right family with the right team, completely changed the situation. Only God can work out situations like that.
A similar situation happened with another team. They were supposed to deliver food to a different family, but at the last minute their delivery was switched. It just happened to be switched to a family a team member knew, which has opened the doors for additional ministry and care for the family.
God is not random. Our God is powerful and is doing great things in our midst, even when we don’t recognize it. Thank you so much for giving us jobs, working with us, donating to the project, and being part of what the Lord is doing to make His name known in Northern Virginia.
Below are some highlight pictures from the day. Enjoy!
Praise God with us for the work and blessings during First Fruits this year. Last Saturday, November 21, we had 32 teams composed of 659 volunteers completing 133 jobs. This day raised $43,490! The teams used some of what was raised to buy groceries and bring gift cards to 32 families with financial need that night. An additional 40 or more families will also be receiving grocery gift cards in the next few weeks. Five local high schools will be participating in a Perseverance Scholarship for seniors as they prepare for college. Teachers will also be nominated for a gift from us. All of these opportunities to exemplify God’s love to our neighbors is only possible because of the many people who sacrificed their time, energy and finances. Thank you!
To learn more about how First Fruits has an impact, read First Fruits: Beyond the Leaves.
Pastor Aaron and his family spent the month of October in Haiti working with Pastor Francois’ church and orphanage in Pignon. In this video, he gives a brief report from our sister church there.
If you would like more information on the family mission to Haiti during Spring Break 2016, visit www.restonbible.org/familymissionhaiti.
To support the Christmas Hope project, visit www.restonbible.org/christmashope.
Our Jr High’s first Friday Night Live of the new school year was a huge success!
The event was set to the theme of the Amazing Race in which the youth were placed into teams and given clues to find different stations around the church to complete challenges before advancing to the next station. As a team, they had to put together a giant puzzle, knock down boxes with tennis balls launched from a water balloon launcher, copy a small painting, learn a portion of a TobyMac dance routine, shoot baskets from either different locations in the basketball court, find and memorize a Bible verse, and several other challenges.
That night, we had over 20 youth indicate on their info cards that they had accepted Christ as their Lord and Savior after hearing Pastor Aaron preach the gospel! Praise God for the great turnout, great weather, no major issues, and for the students that indicated their new faith in Christ.
Jesus is calling us to move beyond the beach and into the waves, to a place of adventure, purpose, and true joy! “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” – Jesus (John 10:10b)
Kids Camp 2015, “Surf’s Up,” has come and gone. This year’s camp was a huge success with roughly 400 children and volunteers in attendance over the five days. The children of the church were challenged in their faith and their walk with Jesus, while many children from the surrounding community got to hear the gospel message presented through music, drama, and Bible teaching, perhaps for the first time. We were blessed with the positive feedback that came in from parents and children alike. Here is a little sampling:
“The kids were coming home from an afternoon summer camp and they practically ran to the car each day in order to not be late to RBC!”
“My heart leapt when my son, who never wants to lead prayer at home, asked if he could pray after coming home from Kids Camp.”
“Our son came home after the second day of camp and asked us to pray with him to receive Jesus’ gift of salvation and eternal life.”
To go along with our theme, “Surf’s Up,” the children were encouraged to bring an offering toward Christian Surfers International (www.christiansurfers.com) and enthusiastically responded. Those funds will be going toward a children’s outreach in Panama this summer through Christian Surfers. These are the moments that make the long hours and hard work of volunteers and staff alike more than worth it.
We are so very thankful for all that God did in and through Kids Camp 2015, “Surf’s Up,” and are already looking forward to next summer! We are also so thankful to the volunteers without whom Kids Camp would be quite impossible. Thank you for answering the call to raise up a generation that knows Christ and makes Him known.
CLICK HERE FOR STOKED TV’S DAILY SURF REPORT VIDEOS! Fresh from Kids Camp 2015, Surfjan Stevens and Keanu Reefs bring news, weather, beach conditions and more on Stoked TV’s Daily Surf Report!
about kids camp
RBC Kids Camp is a week-long day camp open to all children entering the 1st grade through the 6th grade* and takes place the last week of June. Through quality Bible teaching, art, drama, music, and a ton of awesome games, Kids Camp (formerly VBS) is a unique opportunity for children to begin or grow in their relationship with Jesus and to learn to share their hope and joy with others. Check out www.restonbible.org/kidscamp for more info.
*There is a Kids Camp program for nursery, pre-K, and rising kindergarteners which is open to children of Kids Camp volunteer staff only.
Fresh from Kids Camp 2015, Surfjan Stevens and Keanu Reefs bring news, weather, beach conditions and more on Stoked TV’s Daily Surf Report!
Over Spring Break, a team of 21 parents and Jr. High students flew to Pignon, Haiti to serve with RBC-supported national pastor, Francois Romelus (featured here in a previous From the Field). While adults from RBC had visited before, it was the first trip that included students, and it was amazing to see the way the Lord used them.
Pastor Francois runs an orphanage of 50+ children, and it was such a blessing to see the ways that our students could play and interact with them, despite the language barrier. Our students were really able to open up the children there and practically show the love of Christ. On top of playing games of soccer, teaching them to skateboard, braiding hair, and hanging out, we also had several special opportunities with them.
We set up Easter Egg hunt with them and talked with them about the resurrection of Christ. We treated them to s’mores cooked over an open fire, after which everyone licked clean their sticky fingers. We had English classes as they taught us some Creole. And we took the oldest ~20 students to a beach a few hours away. Most of them had never been to the ocean and didn’t know how to swim. It was a treat for them, and a blessing to have fun with them.
We also had the blessing of helping the local church run a VBS-style children’s program. While it was a bit chaotic at times with almost 400 children who couldn’t speak English, it was an amazing blessing to serve the community. Our theme for the week was “Mwen Se Trésor Bondye” or “I am a Treasure of God’s”.
We had a great opportunity to play and do crafts with the children and act out Bible stories, as the national pastors taught God’s Word. At the end of each day, each the church provided a meal of rice, beans, and a little chicken for the children, and it was humbling to see how so little meant so much to them. Please pray for the children to understand that they are God’s Treasure.
Finally, we were blessed with many opportunities to connect with and encourage the local church. Eric Smith, the chairman of RBC’s elders, taught a marriage class. We were able to hear the testimonies of and pray for all of the national pastors and elders of the church in Pignon. Please continue to pray for them as they face many hardships and persecution to lead the church.
Thank you to the many who prayed for this team. We definitely saw the answers to many of your prayers. Please continue to pray for Pastor Francois’ children and their futures, as there are very few career opportunities for them.
**Thanks to all who attended the team review on Wednesday, 4/29 in the Jr. High Room. Please continue to pray for Pastor Francois and the ministry there.
Over the upcoming Spring Break, a missions team (led by Mike Meyers and Jason Goetz) will jet down to Brazil to help host a Vacation Bible School program for up to 200 children of the Terena Indian Tribe. On Friday February 20, the RBC Family-Quest Brazil team hosted a Family Fun Night at Reston Bible Church as a team-building exercise.
About 230 people (55 families!) came out despite record cold temperatures to play games, make crafts, watch movies, and devour pizza, popcorn, and ice cream. The mission team had its first chance to work together on a project, and it was wonderful to hear our younger volunteers ask (after having served for 5 hours), “Is there anything else I can do?” We were also happy to hear people say, “When are you doing this again?”
Special thanks to:
– The Don’s Pizza for giving us a great deal on our dinner
– Our volunteers who served alongside of us even though they are not going on the trip
– Our church family for coming out to support us. We hope you had FUN!
If you would like to support the team’s mission financially you can do so by clicking HERE (this link will take you to the Open Arms Worldwide website) and then following the instructions at the top of the page.
You can also support the team by eating out at The Jukebox Diner (46900 Community Plaza, Sterling VA, 20164) on Sunday, March 8th. For the whole day, (breakfast, lunch, or dinner) you can leave your receipt in the jar at the register and 10% of your bill goes to support our mission team!
This year was the 5th Annual Daddy-Daughter Valentine’s Dance, and it was a huge hit once again! I had the privilege of serving at the event for the 4th year in a row. Needless to say, I am richly blessed by this event each year, so that is why I keep coming back to serve!
This year’s theme was “Paint the Town Red” and the painting theme was incorporated throughout the church. In addition to a large paintbrush in the lobby, there were paint cans hanging above the tables in the Clubhouse where red plastic flowed out and onto the tables. There were even dipped pretzel sticks that looked like paintbrushes!
The evening began for the girls with a special dinner date with their dad. Afterwards, they arrived at the church to receive their corsage and to get their portraits taken with their dad. Both dads and girls were all dressed-up for the evening. The girls had obviously spent time carefully picking out their lovely, sparkling, flowing dresses especially for this evening. They were absolutely stunning with their hair styled and make-up done (some of them better than I can accomplish, I might add!). Afterwards, they enjoyed an evening of crafts, ice cream sundaes and dancing. The evening finished off with a talk about the “Grand Finale of Creation” – the girls themselves. What an excellent ending to the evening where these girls were being celebrated! The second grand finale was a shower of red balloons falling from the ceiling of the sanctuary, which the girls absolutely loved!
While all of the dresses, decorations, crafts and desserts were amazing, the REAL focus of the evening was daddy-daughter relationships. This dance provides an opportunity for dads to be intentional about spending one-on-one time with their daughters, which is something that can be hard to do in the hustle and bustle of life. I especially loved watching the girls posing for pictures with their dads. I was able to look through the pictures at the end of the evening and tears filled my eyes. What a wonderful keepsake for the girls to remember this evening with their dad, where they felt cherished and connected with their father. I know the girls will remember this time fondly.
Not only was this evening important for the special relationship between dads and their daughters, but it also has implications for the girls’ future. A friend of mine posted something on Facebook that I think directly relates to this. She said that when she was younger, her Daddy gave her a strand of pearls and told her that she, like the pearls, was beautifully refined and worthy of being treasured. Now in college, she was wearing the strand of pearls while on a date with a man who truly treasured her. She said she was thankful for her dad who set the standard for how she should be loved. I love how the Daddy-Daughter Valentine’s Dance provides a place where this teaching can begin. Here, fathers can teach their daughters what it looks like to be cherished and loved, setting a precedent for the rest of their lives. It is truly a special event!
-Angela Caldwell, event volunteer
So the holiday season is finally over. All the shopping, gift-giving, cooking, decorating, visiting, and traveling is now past but I wonder how many of us recognized the opportunities for a divine reset as we navigated the ups and downs of the holiday season. Were there any really hard and challenging moments that left you wondering what in the world was going on? Maybe it was a stinging remark by a family member or friend, or possibly you experienced unanticipated sickness or loss? Maybe it was a dashed expectation or just a general feeling that something was not quite right? At times, amidst all of the “expected” joy and celebration, we all can find ourselves experiencing some of the exact opposite.
Well, the good news is… it’s not too late to process those circumstances through the lens of the Gospel and look for what the Lord intends! In this update, we want to offer you a few follow up resources to remind you again that God is sovereign, He loves you and His love is not based on anything you’ve done, are doing, or ever will do. He always gives us more than we ask for (even if we can’t see it in the moment), and He has His hand on every aspect of our lives. He means all things for His glory and our good. We hope you will take some time to review these resources and remember how God ordains resets in our lives.
For some excellent resources in the RBC Bookstore, check out:
“Because He Loves Me” by Elyse Fitzpatrick
“Broken Down House” by Paul Tripp
“Jesus the King” by Tim Keller
“One Way Love” by Tullian Tchividjian
“Step by Step” by James Petty
For the link to the teaching from the Women’s Ministry’s “Ready to Reset” event, please visit the RBC Women’s Ministry Facebook page at www.facebook.com/restonbiblewomen
There you will find the link to the teaching as well as an email to send in any questions. We will get those answers back to you as soon as possible. And don’t forget to “like” us while you are there to be sure to receive regular updates and encouragements.
A blessed New Year to you all!