A Special Christmas Message

Merry Christmas everyone! Two letters from me in the same month. I’m sorry but this an important one!!! As an Emmaus Board we voted on 12-1 to make a donation in Darris Linder’s name to Mercy Manna, which is Darris and Jeanette’s ministry in Slaton.

Many of you knew and loved Darris and may be asking what you can do as a memorial to that precious Brother who was the epitome of Emmaus and without whom the Llano Estacado Emmaus Community would not exist as it does today. As you’re making your end of year monetary donations, won’t you please consider making one in Darris’s name?

If this is on your heart, as it is many of ours, send a check payable to Llano Estacado Emmaus Community and on the memo line add “Darris Linder”. Your generous donation in any amount will be added to our community’s contribution and send to Mercy Manna in Darris’s name. You may mail it to:

Llano Estacado Emmaus Community
P.O. Box 65116
Lubbock, Texas 79464-5116

My prayer is that all of you have a beautiful Christmas and most of all that you find time to reflect on what Jesus’ birth truly means to all of our lives here on Earth and eternally. Draw close to Christ this season and always!

DeColores, Sheila

From the Desk of the Lay Director – Dec. 2016

Sheila KirbyFor to us a CHILD is born, to us a SON is given, and the government will be on HIS shoulders. And HE will be called WONDERFUL COUNSELOR, MIGHTY GOD, EVERLASTING FATHER, PRINCE OF PEACE. Isaiah 9:6

Merry Christmas my Brothers and Sisters! What a prophecy and promise the words of Isaiah gave that still hold true today. Regardless of what is going on around us, the baby born TO US still sits on the throne and holds a place for all of us to join HIM if we will just trust and believe in HIM. Hold onto that community! Always know, this Christmas season and every season, that HE is still our Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father and Prince of Peace. Believe it and show everyone you come in contact with on all your Fourth Days that you have the Hope of Christ and you want them to have too.

I’m writing you a short letter this month as I want us to hear from our Chrysalis Lay Director, David Hunt. I am excited to just sit back and watch this month as David and our Chrysalis family will host our Community Gathering this Thursday, December 1, at First Christian Church, 2306 13th St., Lubbock. Board meetings are at 5:30, we’ll share a meal at 6:30 followed by worship at 7:15. You won’t want to miss this one!

DeColores, Sheila

From the Desk of the Lay Director – Nov 2016

Sheila KirbyHello my dear brothers and sisters in Christ. It’s November, the month for giving thanks, and above all I am grateful for our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and the beautiful life I have because of His grace. I am also thankful for my precious husband, Gary, my family and all the friends I have been blessed with. I also want you to know how grateful I am for all of you and the opportunity I have to be your Lay Director.  It is such a privilege to be able to serve and be served by you. You may not feel you are noticed by our community, or as important as some, but trust me you are! We all need each other and “For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.” Romans 12:4-5.  You, my friends, are important to me and others by just being you. Just use the gifts God has given you and others will notice and be ever grateful for you just as I am and, more importantly, as Christ is.

Now I have some important information from our database coordinator.  The new database for Llano Estacado has been set up so that community members can access their own information, change addresses, phone numbers, etc. It also allows the user to search for another members name. In addition, those individuals who are assigned as lay directors on upcoming walks will have the option to build their team in the database. This eliminates the need for providing member data sheets to team members and for the team member to try to remember all the walks that they have worked. Once this information is entered it can be easily exported to excel for future use.

emmaus-databaseThe database website is located at leec.inetmember.com and there is a link to it on the Llano Estacado website. Members wishing to log on need to use their email address as their user name and the default password of leecleec (case sensitive). As with all new databases, there will be some that have trouble logging in for the first time. We have Site Administrators that will address these issues and help get you logged in. Once you are successfully in, it is highly recommended that you change your password. As with all things, grace and patience is a plus!

This is an exciting development for our community! We desperately need our data base up-to-date and with the new system, we can make that happen. Please give it a try. If you need assistance, let us know and we will help you.

I do thank God for all of you and please know that each of you are just as important to the Llano Estacado Emmaus Community as the next member. I hope to see you Thursday night at Broadway Church of Christ, 1924 Broadway, Lubbock for our monthly community gathering. Be there at 6:00 if this is your first time; 6:30 for our meal and at 7:15 for our worship service.

Sheila Kirby

From the Desk of the Lay Director – Oct 2016

Sheila KirbyHappy Fall Ya’ll! This is my favorite season and I really don’t use that cliché, but it did seem appropriate for an October letter to my brothers and sisters in Christ. Jesus told us in Luke 10:2 that “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into His harvest field.” On this beautiful Autumn morning, I think it’s time to remember that, and how it’s our responsibility as followers of Christ to go out into His fields and draw in His people to follow Him. Christ has called us to be His hands and feet, so if we don’t go out there and pick them ya’ll, how are they supposed to know how much Christ loves them and wants them to follow Him too?

This month we have lots of opportunities to do just that. First, please join us this Thursday, October 6, at Westmont Christian Church, 4808 Utica AVE, for our monthly Emmaus Gathering. Emmaus and Kairos boards, be there at 5:30. Babe Chicks, if you have never attended a monthly meeting, need to be there at 6. We’ll share a meal together at 6:30 followed by a wonderful Worship Service at 7. Childcare will be provided. Bring guests! Everyone is always welcome. Don’t forget to bring food!

October 20-23, Women’s Walk #139, will be happening in Slaton. There is plenty of room for pilgrims so GET THOSE APPLICATIONS IN! Scholarship’s are available for half the walk fee. Now’s the time to harvest that crop of beautiful ladies God has been preparing to attend this walk. Teresa Reed and her team are the perfect ones to love on them just the way Christ would. You can download the applications along with sponsor forms and scholarship requests at llanoemmaus.org or come see me Thursday. Please join us for any or all of the weekend activities that you can. Send-off is Thursday October 20, on the Holy Spirit Patio of Mercy Center at 7PM. Candlelight is Saturday, October 22, at St. Joseph’s Church at 8PM, and Closing will be Sunday October 23 at 4PM back at the Church.

This is our final walk for the year. Part of bringing in Christ’s Harvest is to show His love which is what we at the Llano Estacado do best! His love Agape Love! Remember how meaningful all the agape love you received was for you on your weekend? The trinkets, the food, the people, letters? Well now is your time to shine! Please bring your pillow agape, food and drinks to send-off on Thursday. If you can’t go to send-off, you may bring them to Community this week or you can always drop them off at my home. It seems the same groups bring the agape every walk and if you or you reunion group can start providing pillow agape or food items it’s a great way to feel a part of each walk or journey. It’s addictive!!!

This month I want to welcome David Hunt as the new Lay Director for Chrysalis. I can’t wait to get to know him and hear all about his journey. Be sure and seek him out and welcome him as well.

So, Happy Fall Ya’ll. I’ll see you soon. If you ever want to get started in a reunion group or start your own, make agape or if you’ve been out of pocket for a while just let me know and I’ll be happy to help you get plugged in!

Sheila Kirby

From the Desk of the Lay Director – Sep 2016

Sheila Kirby“It’s beginning to rain, hear the voice of my father-
He’s saying who so ever will, come and drink of my water-
He’s promised to pour his spirit out, on your sons and your daughters-
If your thirsty and dry, look up to the sky, it’s beginning to rain!”

That old Christian song comes to mind on this beautiful end-of-summer day. I pray you’ve all had a great summer and now as it ends and it’s back-to-school time and for many back to Emmaus time, my prayer is you look up to the sky and take in the Father’s love for you. In John 4:14 Jesus said, “but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” That’s the verse I want to claim over our Llano Estacado Emmaus Community. As I listen to the rain on our roof, I know if we look to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and follow where HIS Spirit leads we’ll continue to prosper and grow.

Several met last year and put together a Top Level Improvement Priority plan for the Llano Estacado that the Board of Directors has approved and is fully dedicated to. Please forgive my longer letter this month but it’s important we communicate this plan to you.

The first priority is a process to teach, train and invite people to be active in small groups. You hear us constantly pushing reunion groups because we feel that a small group, whether a reunion group with our community or a small group at your church is very important. I love my reunion group and can’t begin to tell you how much it means to have a group to pray with and to be accountable to as we do life together. If you have not joined a group please do so right away. A list of reunion groups is available on the website at llanoemmaus.org or you may want to go back and reconnect with a couple of men or women from your Walk to Emmaus and start your own.

The second action is to develop a communication plan to increase awareness about the Llano Estacado Emmaus Community. It is our goal to have 12 full Emmaus Walks and 8 full Chrysalis’s a year. Is this a hefty goal, yes it is…is it obtainable you bet! It has been awesome to watch God at work over the past couple of years. Let’s not limit what HE can do. Our numbers have increased and if that trend continues we can look forward to meeting our goal.

The third action is to develop a process to communicate the vision and to support the Chrysalis Community. We can do this by being a part of Chrysalis, supporting them in all they do. These guys and gals are our future. The difficulties we see daily are multiplying and the next generation needs to be given the proper tools to face them with Jesus as their rock and their shield. What better way to do that than to have them experience HIS love and grace on a Chrysalis Weekend. If you feel called to support this very vital ministry please seek out Kim Smith or anyone on the Chrysalis Board to help you get plugged in.

So what can you do? Stay involved. This week on September 1, we meet in Slaton. Be at Mercy Center at 7:00 for send-off of the next Young Women’s Journey. Yvonne Alred and her team are excited to get started so please be there to help them kick it off. Following, at 7:15 we will meet at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church for our monthly Community gathering. Be back for Candlelight Saturday, September 3 at 8:00 and then again for closing Sunday, September 4 at 4:00 all at the church. On September 15, Greg Schilling’s Young Men’s Journey send-off is at 7:00 at Mercy Center with Candlelight at 8:00, September 17 and closing at 4:00 on September 18 both at St. Joseph’s.

Last but never least on September 30-October 2 Kairos Outside #12 will be happening with Kathy Stephenson’s leadership. Please come out and support the ladies on their weekend at the Walk-in-love ceremony on Saturday night on the Holy Spirit Patio of Mercy Center and on Sunday at the closing ceremony back on the patio. If you’ve never attended either of the Kairos Outside activities please do. You will never forget it and be as blessed by these beautiful women as you are by blessing them.

As I finish this long letter, still enjoying that pitter patter on our roof as Jesus shows his great love for us and our land, I pray you are blessed beyond measure and that I get to see you soon as we gather together for this month’s activities.

Sheila Kirby