Volume 4 Issue 6 | September 2021
First Fall Breeze
By Stacy Edwards, from Devotions for Fall
“Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.” (Acts 3:19 NIV)

You think it will never happen as you perspire your way through the dog days of summer. When the fans run full blast and there isn’t enough sweet tea in the world to quench your thirst. The pavement is hot, the air is thick, and the mosquitoes outnumber the people. You begin operating in survival mode, believing that, maybe, this will actually be the year when it doesn’t show up.

Then, one morning, you step outside onto your front porch, and you feel it. There’s something different in the air — a coolness that tells you fall has finally arrived. There’s a crispness to the wind that invigorates you as the burdensome heat of summer fades away. Your heart is lightened, and your spirit is revived. There isn’t anything quite as refreshing as that first fall breeze that announces the arrival of a new season.

Our lives go through seasons, just like the calendar. There are periods when we feel weary from the weight of our sins. The guilt and shame we carry are as oppressive as the heat of a Southern July day. There seems to be no end in sight, and we find ourselves just trying to survive. That is not the life our heavenly Father desires for His children. Thankfully, just as we turn a calendar page, we can turn from the heaviness of our former ways.

Just like that first fall breeze, repentance will bring a refreshing new season into our lives. When we turn from our sins and turn toward Jesus, forgiveness blows over us like a crisp autumn wind, and new energy is instilled in us. The sky is a little brighter, the colors are a little bolder, and our steps are a little lighter as the burden is lifted.

Walking in freedom with Jesus is as stimulating as that first fall breeze. Everything that once weighed us down just falls away, and a fresh beginning is ours for the taking. Everything is brimming with possibility, and the opportunities are endless.

Let’s repent, be refreshed, and embrace a new season with Christ.
By Michael Wimberly, interviewing Ruth-Ann Thompson
What does your ministry do?
Sabbath School, known as “the church at study,” is vital to the spiritual growth of church members. There is a powerful synergy when members are studying the same passages at the same time all around the world. Sabbath School exists to ensure that study and discussion take place in the church. It’s the time when the interaction and exchange enhance our understanding and strengthen the body of Christ.

Who do you consider your audience? Who are you serving?
Everyone from the cradle to the grave belongs in Sabbath School.

How does your ministry serve the community?
Countless thousands have joined the church through participation in Sabbath School. Many churches have been started through branch Sabbath Schools, an outreach arm of the department.

What are the major goals for your ministry in 2021?
Right now, the adults are meeting virtually and in person. Our children’s Sabbath School is returning after laying dormant for over a year. Our primary goal is building attendance, as well as securing teachers for our children.

Why did you want to be a part of this ministry?
I have always loved Sabbath School, and I understand the necessity of this department. Ephesus has excellent adult teachers and a Sabbath School Council that is knowledgeable, helpful, and efficient. The previous leaders have paved the way for me to carry on.

Why should people participate in your ministry?
When you study God’s word, you have power, direction, and focus. Bible study is important!

What kinds of spiritual gifts are you hoping that your volunteers have?
The gifts of teaching, helping, admonition, and most of all, kindness.
Why Should You Volunteer at Church?
By Kaitlyn Cressley
Have you ever wondered what the Bible says about volunteering at church? Is it one of God’s commandments? Is it just a good thing to do? Will it help us get into heaven? Well, volunteering at church won’t get you into heaven and it isn’t one of the Ten Commandments, but God does have a lot to say about serving Him, the church, and others. Check it out.

So the book of James talks a lot about faith and works. We don’t have to do good works (volunteer our time, help those in need, etc.) to be saved, we do good works because we are saved! We can show our faith by our actions (James 2:18). James also goes on to say that faith without work is dead. So if we claim to be saved by the blood of Jesus, we need to show it through our actions. One way to do that is by volunteering our time at church.

Here are three reasons we should volunteer at church.

To Use Your Gifts
In his letter to early Christians, Peter writes, “God has given you a gift from his great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve others” (1 Peter 4:10). God has given each of us who follow him specific and unique gifts. Some of us have the gift of hospitality. We enjoy making people feel loved and welcomed. A great way to use this gift in the church is by being on the First Touch Team. You can greet guests as they come to church and make them feel at home. Some of us have the gift of teaching. Use this gift to lead a Sabbath School class or a Bible study. Use the gifts God has given you to volunteer at church.

To Serve Rather Than Being Served
Jesus himself said, “For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as ransom for many” (Matthew 20:28). Jesus was the ultimate example of serving others. He was fully God, yet He came to serve man. In John 13, Jesus serves his closest followers, the disciples, by washing their feet. He is setting the example for not only the disciples but also for us that serving others is greater than being served. There is so much more than coming to church to hear a good sermon and sing songs. We are called to serve others. By volunteering at church we can do just that.

By Serving Others, I Am Serving God
When we volunteer at church, we are serving others. We are welcoming people, teaching kids, and loving on others. When we do these things for people, we are ultimately doing it for God. Jesus says, “The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you were doing it for me’” (Matthew 25:40). So when you come to church and volunteer, you are ultimately doing those works for God.

Get Started!
So, now that you know WHY you should volunteer at church, you can jump in and do it! We’d love to get you on a volunteer team. Love kids? Talk to Ruth-Ann Thompson on how to volunteer in Children's Sabbath School. Love to sing? Talk to Tirzah Washington about how you can serve on a praise team. Not into kids or singing, that’s okay! Join the First Touch Team, the Hospitality Team, or the Usher Board. If all else fails, ask one of the pastors what other ways you can volunteer. We look forward to hearing from you soon!
Manage Your Giving
  • You can reach Adventist Giving directly by using this link or by going to www.adventistgiving.org. Once you log in, type in the ephesus sda church, hit Enter, and select our church in Columbus, Ohio. Then you can follow the steps as you normally would.
  • You can drop off your offerings in person, M-F between 10 AM and 1 PM.
  • You can mail your offerings to the church at this address:
Ephesus SDA Church
Attn: Treasury
3650 Sunbury Road, Columbus, OH 43219
1: Rachelle James-Mason; 3: Stephanie Hunt; 4: Angela Wimberly; 6: Betty Sellars; 9: Nicholas Golden, Giovani Johnson; 10: Jamaal Cox, Pamela Watson; 11: Dapo Ajaiyeoba, Regina Gama; 14: Karla Scott-Bryant; 15: Nelia Pluviose Desrosiers; 18: Kendall Lewis, Patricia Broussard; 19: Algenorithia Jamison, Reyguel Nious, 20: Grace Brown; 21: Dr. Michele Oyortey; 23: Monifa Hawthorne, Khalid Parris; 24: Patty Gray; 25: Yolanda Harrison, Jean Hazell, Sharon Page
Did we miss your September birthday? Let us know by emailing announce@ephesus-sda.com.
  • The DNA of a Productive Life, new sermon series for September
  • Do It Together Virtual Sabbath School Convention, September 9-11, register at oneteamplaybook.org
  • Fall Reading Activity, sponsored by the Education Department, registration deadline September 24
  • Called Business Meeting, September 25 at 7:30 PM
  • Communion, October 2
  • Rekindling Your Love, God's Covenant Marriage Enrichment, April 8-10, 2022, first payment deadline October 29, 2021
Ephesus Communications Department
Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church
3650 Sunbury Road Columbus, Ohio 43219