This Weekend at Hope:
Genesis: A Binge-Worthy Bible Series | Mad Men | Genesis 37:3-11
Hi Hope Ames!
In my book, today is a holiday, and I 'm not talking about National Pizza Day (although according to, Feb. 9 really is National Pizza Day). For me, today is big because the Winter Olympics are about to kick off!
...Okay, so the opening ceremonies in Pyeongchang happened hours ago, but it will broadcast tonight at 7 CST, and I 'm tuning in like it never happened before.
During the Olympics, I 'm the guy who runs away from the TV, temporarily blocks people on social media, and turns off all sports updates on my phone. I don 't want someone to spoil it for me before I can watch it. You know, kind of like how the entire world spoiled the most recent "This Is Us " episode while some of us had to miss it Sunday night (not bitter at all).
My point is this: experiencing something exciting for the first time is a thrill.
Even more important than the Olympics, Lent starts next week. Lent is the 40-day season in which we reflect on the meaning of Jesus ' death and resurrection.
That last thing I wrote - "we reflect on the meaning of Jesus ' death and resurrection " - that 's easy to skim over, isn 't it? Personally, I 've gone through Lent 25 times, and I always know how it ends. Jesus dies for my sins, and he rises from the dead, winning salvation for all who believe in him. I mean, I know that it 's a big deal, but what if I positioned myself to go through Lent as if I were experiencing it for the first time?
"Praise the Lord; praise God our savior! For each day he carries us in his arms ..." (Psalm 68:19)
Sometimes, we forget just how insanely thrilling it is that Jesus died and resurrected back to life because we ' ve heard the story a lot. But seriously, he died! And not even kidding, he came back to life!
This season of Lent, we know how the story ends, but let ' s not forget how wildly exciting it is. Let ' s remember that this isn ' t just some event that took place 2,000 years ago, but Jesus ' victory is redemption that we get to experience each day .
We ' ll begin the season of Lent at Hope Ames with our Ash Wednesday service at the Ames City Auditorium on Feb. 14 at 7:00 pm. Kairos students are coming as well (instead of our usual service at The Link on Wednesdays at 8:00 pm). Come and see!

P.S. We 're wrapping up " Genesis: A Binge-Worthy Bible Series " this weekend, and you 'll be * mad* if you miss it (I crack myself up). We 're using the show "Mad Men " (see what I did?) to explore the story of Joseph and his brothers and God 's dream for our lives. See you Sunday morning at 10:30 in the Ames City Auditorium!" 
Ash Wednesday
Wednesday, Feb. 14, 7:00 pm

Begin the season of Lent with the Hope community as we gather for worship, Holy Communion and the distribution of ashes to remember the grace of Jesus Christ. Service will be held at Ames City Auditorium, 520 6th St.
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ISU Basketball Watch Party
Saturday, Feb. 17, 11:30 am - 2:00 pm

Cheer on our local favorite men's basketball team with a watch party at The Link. Tip-off is at noon. Please bring a favorite appetizer to share. All are welcome!
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Meal Ministry
The Meal Ministry serves to bless others by providing meals during times of trial and joy (illness, surgery, death, birth, etc.). Meal requests can be emailed to  

for age 3 - grade 5
 for grades 6-8 
 for high school students 

for college students 

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