Category Archives: This Week with Pastor Jon

April 7, 2019

My soul waits in silence for God only; from Him is my salvation.  He only is my rock and my salvation,  my stronghold; I shall not be greatly shaken. ~Psalm 62:1-2~

Welcome to worship at Dayton Avenue today.  It is no accident that we are here today.  God, Who is sovereign over all things, has a purpose in our being here.  Take a moment at the beginning of our service to invite Him to speak to you and to do whatever He desires to do in your life this morning. 

Every spring we receive a special offering to give an extra gift toward missions here in North America.  The Annie Armstrong Easter Missions Offering helps fund new church plants, community centers, ESL classes, ministries to those with special needs, and many other great Christian endeavors.  We still have a way to reach our goal of $7,000.  Will you ask the Lord to enable you to give an extra, sacrificial gift toward missions this month?  Thank you.

This Saturday morning at 9:00 is a Church Workday. Please come and hep us spruce up after a long winter If you have placed your faith in Jesus and want to publically testify through baptism that you belong to Him, please let a pastor know so that you can be included in the Baptism Celebration coming on Palm Sunday, April 14th.  The new pictorial church directory is coming soon, but you can still have your portrait taken – happening that morning as well.  Finally, we’ll have a Wall-Breaking celebration next Sunday (at the end of our 11:00 am worship service) as we begin our summer expansion/building project!

Plan now to attend our Good Friday Service at 7:00pm on April 19th.  There will be several features that will make this service unique.  We will focus on Jesus’ great love and sacrifice for us through music, communion, and live artists painting scenes of Christ’s Passion.  It will be a special evening.  We love you and love serving the Lord together with you.  May God bless you greatly this week as you live for Him.

March 31, 2019

“Walk in love, just as Christ also loved you
and gave Himself up for us, an offering and
a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.” ~Ephesians 5:2~

Good morning and welcome to worhip at Dayton Avenue.  God is worthy of all our praise and we are glad that you are here. Whether you are a first-time guest or a long-time family member, we pray that you are drawn closer to Jesus today. 

Today is a busy day with the Ministry Fair in the morning and the premier showing of the new The Pilgrim’s Progress film this evening.  Before, between, and after our morning worship services you’ll be able to explore info booths for all of the LifeGroups and various ministries you can join and/or serve in.  Be sure to use your Ministry Fair card as you visit the tables in order to be part of the prize drawings.  Come back this evening for the film and free popcorn, and if you bring someone who doesn’t have a church home, we’ll also give you a voucher for free ice cream after the film!

This Wednesday evening at 6:00 is our monthly OutPour event and I want to encourage you to come and be a part of our Easter outreach ministries.  Supper is provided free!  We are planning a Baptism Celebration Palm Sunday, April 14th.  If you have placed your faith in Jesus and want to publically testify through baptism that you belong to Him, please let a pastor know so that you can be included.  The new pictorial church directory is coming soon, but you can still have your portrait taken – that happens on Palm Sunday morning as well.  Finally, we’ll have a Wall-Breaking celebration that morning as we begin our summer expansion/building project!

Cary and Shelly Honnold (and their family Jacob, William, and Kayleah) joined our church a few weeks ago. Welcome them this morning if you haven’t done so already. A film crew is here this morning making a new welcome video for our website.  May the Lord bless you this week as you live for Him.  We are praying for you.

March 24, 2019

“God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed.” ~2nd Corinthians 9:8~

Welcome to Dayton Avenue – we are glad that you have chosen to worship with us.  Our prayer is that each of us is drawn closer to our Savior today, our faith is strengthened, and the Lord is lifted high. 

If all goes according to plan Sarah and I are back in church with you today, but I am actually writing this just hours before we leave for Israel knowing that there won’t be time for me to do so while I’m there or traveling home.  We are excited beyond words to be going to the Holy Land, and we anticipate we’ll be different people when we come back.  What won’t change, though, is our love for each of you and our joy in serving you and serving the Lord with you.

The premier showing of the new Pilgrim’s Progress film is next Sunday evening March 31st from 5:00-7:30, here at church.  You don’t actually need a ticket to attend, but we’ve printed some so you can use them to invite your friends and family (available at the Welcome Desk and Children’s Check-In). There will be free popcorn, and if you bring someone who doesn’t have a church home, we’ll also give you a voucher for free ice cream after the film!  Next Sunday morning is also the Ministry Fair.  Before, between, and after our worship services you’ll be able to explore all the LifeGroups and various ministries you can join and/or serve in. 

A film crew will be here this Wednesday evening and next Sunday morning making a new welcome video for our website.  We are also   providing one more picture-taking opportunity for you to be included in a new pictorial church directory.  May the Lord bless you this week as you live for Him.  We are praying for you.

March 17, 2019

“He [Jesus] must increase, and I must decrease.” ~John 3:30~

Welcome worship at Dayton Avenue this morning.  Years ago when ministering in Hawaii, we noticed the little symbol HE>i all over the island.  It was printed on bumper stickers and on clothing.  It very simply declares that He [Jesus] is greater than I.  What a great way to keep Christ’s priority in front of our eyes and minds.  I mention this because Bill Babione will be preaching today on John the Baptist’s declaration in John 3:30. Sarah and I are wrapping up our trip to the Holy Land this week, but we haven’t forgotten you!   We miss you and are praying for you this morning. 

If you are interested in learning more about our church, you are invited to the New Member Info Luncheon next Sunday after church.  Meet our Pastors and their families and ask any questions you may have; no strings attached!  Just fill out the RSVP insert.

At the Welcome Desk and Children’s Check-In area are “tickets” to the premier showing of The Pilgrim’s Progress film, here at our church, Sunday evening March 31st.  You don’t actually need a ticket to attend, but we’ve printed these so you can use them to invite your friends and family.  If you bring someone who doesn’t have a church home, we’ll also give you a voucher for free ice cream after the film! 

If God has enabled you to give a special gift toward our upcoming building expansion project, now is the time we need it!  Lord willing, we’ll have a ground-breaking (and/or wall-breaking) service before Easter and then work will begin shortly after that.  Just mark your gift “Building.”  Thank you so much.

A film crew will be here on Wednesday evening 3/27 and Sunday morning 3/31 recording for a new website welcome video.  Info will be sent to parents so you can know what to expect.  God bless you.

March 10, 2019

“…all who were sick implored Him that they might
just touch the fringe of His cloak….” ~Matthew 14:35-36~

Welcome to the worship service this morning.  If you are a first-time guest, please stop at the Welcome Center and get a little loaf of homemade bread as well as a guest card.  We would greatly appreciate it if you fill out that card and place it in the offering.  We promise not to put you on a mailing list (but we’ll send you a letter thanking you for coming today). 

Sarah and I are en-route to Israel today, but our hearts and prayers are with you.  We can’t touch the hem of Jesus’ garment, but we are excited to walk where He walked!  Thank you to Dr. Dan Dewitt for ministering God’s Word this morning and to Ron and Ellen Calligan, our current missionaries-in-residence in our mission home, who will be sharing their ministry in this evening’s service.  I encourage you to come back tonight at 6:00 and hear how God is at work in Peru.

If you are interested in learning more about our church, you are invited to the New Member Info Luncheon after church on March 24th.  Meet our Pastors and their families and ask any questions you may have; no strings attached!  Just fill out the bulletin insert RSVP.

Last Sunday we voted overwhelmingly on the contractor for our facility expansion project this summer.  Lord willing, we will be having a ground- (and wall-) breaking celebration on Palm Sunday!  As I shared in the message last week, the Lord has enabled us to give generously to His work here at Dayton Avenue and around the world, and I am certain He will enable us to give generously to support this project too.  If God has enabled you to give a special gift, now is the time we need it!  Just mark your gift “Building.”  Thank you so much.

We are filming for a new welcome video on our website – crews will be here on Wednesday 3/27 and Sunday 3/31.  God bless you.

March 3, 2019

“Give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will
be put into your lap. For with the measure you use
it will be measured back to you.” ~ Luke 6:38~

Welcome to Dayton Avenue.  Today is a celebration day.  It’s not an anniversary or holiday, or a day marking a special event.  But it is Sunday, and we want to celebrate the life we have in Jesus Christ.  He is the Focus of our day together.

Our job this morning is to praise God.  The Bible says that God seeks those who worship Him in spirit and truth.  We worship God with our spirits through songs and through studying His Word the Bible.  And in the process of God seeking us out, we will discover that He is what our hearts are truly searching for.

This evening at 6:00 is the final special business meeting concerning the building expansion project.  Thank you for praying about this, we are just about two months away from work beginning, Lord willing.

I’ll be sharing more from the platform about the insert for the upcoming Membership Information Luncheon on March 24th.  A question I am often asked is, what is the process for becoming a member here?  This luncheon is designed to be the first step: we share information about what we believe and teach, how we make decisions and remain accountable, and what makes our church unique.  After that, people share their testimony with one of the pastors, and finally, they come forward at the end of a service and we corporately receive them as members.  I encourage you to consider attending the luncheon.

Last year, you – our church family – surprised us with an anniversary gift trip to Israel.  Sarah and I leave this coming weekend and could not be more excited!  Thank you so much.  We love you and are so blessed to serve the Lord here with you.  Don’t forget to turn your clocks ahead next Sunday!  God bless you.  We’ll be on our trip the next two Sundays, but don’t miss our special speakers!!

February 24, 2019

“The sorrow that is according to the will of God produces a repentance without regret, leading to salvation, but the sorrow of the world produces death.” ~ 2nd Corinthians 7:10~

Welcome to worship at Dayton Avenue this morning.  If you are a first-time guest, we give you a special welcome.  We pray you will experience God’s joy and peace, and be strengthened in your faith today.

In the past I’ve challenged all of us to Pick the LONGEST Line.  When we go shopping, we instinctively look for the shortest checkout line because we don’t want to get stuck waiting.  We may develop similar routines in every aspect of life to maximize speed and minimize our contact with people… and we wonder why we never seem to get opportunities to share Jesus’ love with others!  Will you take the challenge again this year?  Pick the longest line, say a quick prayer, and then spread some joy to the people you’re “stuck” in line with. God might redeem that extra little wait time with an opportunity to give a word of encouragement or even invite someone to church. 

Next Sunday evening at 6:00 there will be one more special business meeting concerning the building expansion project, this time to choose the general contractor.  Renderings and floorplans are posted in the display case outside the church office for you to look through, but feel free to talk with Pastor Chavies or any of the Long Range Planning Committee members (Zane Butcher, Jim Gruenberg, Donna Mathews, Steve Miller, or Kirsten Vooys).

You may have noticed the American flag in the display case in the foyer.  This is Howard Jordan’s flag, presented at his funeral as part of his military honors.  The flag’s case itself is also special – some of the wood is from the pews of the old church destroyed in the tornado – the church Howard helped build!   We love you and are praying every day for you.  May the Lord bless you this week as you live for Him.

February 17, 2019

You love Him even though you have never seen Him. Though you do not see Him now, you trust Him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy.” ~1st Peter 1:8~

Welcome to Dayton Avenue this morning.  We will be observing the Lord’s Table in our worship today, remembering the cruelty of Jesus’ Cross, the selflessness of His Sacrifice, and the magnitude of His Great Love for us.  Observing Communion is an act of obedience as well as a personal recommitment to live our lives for Jesus.  That is what true worship is really about – serving our Savior.  [Note: the bread and the grape juice are gluten-free.]

This evening at 6:00, the Long Range Planning Committee will be sharing information in a Special Business Meeting.  We want you to be completely informed and receive your approval at every important step of this building expansion project, so please come if you can.  We will also approve the January financial report and vote on funding some missions opportunities at this meeting.

Last Sunday we received several new church members: Nick and Rachael Carrington, and Scott and Ginny Jenkins.  Please welcome them this morning if you didn’t get a chance to do so last week.  If you are interested in learning more about Dayton Avenue, you are invited to the New Member Info Luncheon being planned for Sunday, March 24th. Look for more information in the weeks ahead.

Thank you all for the many ways you worship the Lord through serving our church family and our community.  I hear stories of how God is using you, and it greatly encourages me.  Keep it up… God promises you will reap in joy!  We love you and are praying for you.  Please don’t hesitate to call on any of us pastors this week.  May the Lord shine His face upon you.

February 10, 2019

“In this is love, not that we loved God,
but that He loved us and sent His Son
to be the propitiation for our sins.”

~1st John 4:10~

Welcome to worship at Dayton Avenue today.  Though God is everywhere-present – not limited by time or space – He inhabits the worship of His people gathered together in His name.  May we all experience His smile upon us in this place today through praising Him and studying His Word. 

Did you realize we have a small Children’s Library of books and dvds located on the shelves below the church family mailboxes?  We use an honor check-out system; take what you want and bring it back when you are done.  The Adult Library resources are located on the shelves by the triple-doors in the back wing of the building.  By the way, if you do not have a mailbox yet (they are located in the hallway near the Children’s Ministry Welcome Counter), please call the church office this week and we will give you one.

Next Sunday evening at 6:00 will be a Special Business Meeting for the Long Range Planning Committee to share information.  We want you to be completely informed and receive your approval at every important step of this building expansion project, so please come if you can.  We will also approve the January financial report and vote on funding some missions opportunities at this meeting.

Next Sunday morning we will remember the sacrifice of our Savior around the Lord’s Table, (the elements we use are gluten-free).  God has been so good to us all, and it is amazing to see Him at work here in our church and our community.  It is a blessing to serve Him together with all of you.  We love you, we are praying for you, and we thank the Lord for you.  Please know that I pray for you and am here for you, as is our entire pastoral team.

February 3, 2019

“Be still, and know that I am God.
 I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth!”

~Psalm 46:10~

Welcome to worship at Dayton Avenue today.  Around the world, hundreds of millions of people are gathering together today – like us – to worship our Lord and Savior.  Think for a minute how awesome that really is. 

The world around us may be largely under the power of the adversary, Satan, but Sunday, no matter where on earth he may choose to go, Satan cannot get very far away from the sound of us Christians praising the name of our great Savior!  Must drive him crazy!  May that be especially true in our church family today.

This evening we have a special guest – Jack Helton – who serves as Evangelism Group Leader / Foundation Director for our State Convention of Southern Baptist Churches in Ohio.  I’ve asked Jack to come and share his insights on the subject of Estate Planning for Christians.  There are many free tools and resources available to us as part of our convention that can help you create wills, establish guardianship for your family, and even invest in a way that benefits missions around the world.  I hope you will come back.

The Super Bowl is tonight, just in case you hadn’t heard!  Many of you have made plans to be with family and friends to watch the game.  Some of you have used this opportunity to invite someone new into your home – someone who may not yet know the Lord.  Because of that, our evening service is moved up to 5:00pm.  

There are still plenty of our church ministry notebooks at the ends of the platform for you to organize your sermon notes, Bible study materials, and prayer journal.  They are free, so make sure you get one today.  We are praying the Lord’s blessings on you this week.