Winning Ways - from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas  Contact Tom Goodman, Pastor
Manage Your Subscription -- Subscribe/Unsubscribe Contact Us About Your Subscription

"A Vision That Will Draw People"
by Tom Goodman
October 18, 2006

This Sunday we’ll reaffirm Christ’s vision for his church; next Sunday we’ll invite someone to join us at church.  It’s all part of our ongoing study through the Apostles Creed, and I hope you’ll make plans to participate.

The hardest thing for some people to say is the line from the Creed that we’ll study this week:  “I believe in the church.”  I’ve met people who are intrigued with Jesus but they’re just not too thrilled with church.  They can’t understand how involvement with an imperfect group of people has anything to do with spirituality.

But loving someone means sharing in that person’s passions—and Jesus is passionate about his church!  The Bible says, “Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her” (Ephesians 5:25).  We need to understand why Jesus loved the church so deeply if we’re going to take him seriously.

Jesus expects you to join other disciples in pursuit of an inspiring vision of what “church” is supposed to be.  Our mission is to work together until that aim is fulfilled.

This Sunday, October 22, we’ll look at that vision.  We’ll also observe the Lord’s Supper and witness the baptism of several new believers.

Then, after recommitting to Christ’s vision for his church on October 22, plan to invite someone with you to church on the next Sunday.  On October 29, we’re going to examine that line in the Creed:  “I believe in the forgiveness of sins.”  I will explain why the cross was God’s way to forgive our sins, and I will invite people to commit to Christ.  This would be a perfect day to bring someone with you.  I believe people will make some decisions that day, and maybe your friend will be one of them.  Most of you receive this newsletter on Wednesday, so you have ten days to work on your invitation.

As many people will tell you, you will get more out of the sermon series if you keep up with the book readings.  This week, read chapters 14-16 of The Anchor Course to learn more about Christ’s vision for his church.  Then join us this Sunday at 9:30am or 10:45am for this important study.  To catch up with the series, listen online (iTunes or website).  You can receive a free book when you attend Hillcrest during our current sermon series, or you can order copies online by clicking here.  To learn more about the book, read the introduction by clicking here or check out the website at


Important News

Youth Basketball and Cheerleading!  Click here to find out how to enroll your child in our new program!  Spread the word about our new basketball program for grades 5-6.  It’s called Hillcrest Hoops, and it’s designed to get them ready for school basketball!

High Attendance Day is October 29.  Find out how to make this a great day by reading Herb’s article.

Super Heroes Day for Kids!  In BJ’s article she writes, “Our kids are getting excited about Super Heroes Day on October 29.  It has been fun to listen to their costume ideas.  We are encouraging all kids (infants–5th grade) and kids' workers to come as heroes that Sunday morning.  A few ideas are Bible heroes, heroes of the faith, movie and comic heroes, anyone made-up or real.  Be creative, but don't stress!  We will be taking pictures at 9:35am, so don't be late!”

Kids Ultimate Pumpkin Party.  In BJ’s article she also writes, “Watch for the orange bulletin insert this Sunday.  It is your opportunity to sign up for the Kids Ultimate Pumpkin Party on October 31, 6:00-7:30pm.  One side is an RSVP form.  The other gives you ideas for ways you can minister through the party.  We need chaperones, cakes, wrapped candy, as well as help setting-up and cleaning up.  The more of us who participate, the greater number of games we will have available for everyone to play!  Don't forget to invite your friends!  The first folks to tell me that they are coming were five guests!”

Contribute to the Building Fund.  In Gene’s article, he writes, “Our next major project is the parking lot.  We will resurface much of the area along the retaining wall, the drive/parking area on the office side of the building, and behind the MPC.  We will repair several other areas, put on a new seal coat, and re-stripe the entire lot.  This will take just over $50,000.  This will require all the funds currently available in the building fund plus some from the capital acquisition fund.  So, if you want to contribute directly to these types of projects, make a note on the Building Fund line on your offering envelope.”

Annual Craft Show.  In Jim’s article he writes, “Please plan to come to the craft show, bring some friends, and spend some time shopping and eating—did I mention Enchiladas are back!  Keep in mind:  All proceeds from food sales and booth rentals are distributed to those students and families "working" the show.  The families use the funds to help offset the cost of future student ministry events.”

Links to Your World

I enjoyed the Boundless Webzine article, From Mecca to Calvary by Thabiti M. Anyabwile, the new pastor at my former church, the First Baptist Church of Grand Cayman.
Be sure to read the excellent column by Frank Page, our new Convention President: The Need for Relevancy.
I’ve uploaded my article, Jesus in History and the Bible at  This article shows that even without a New Testament we can learn seven things about Jesus from the writings of non-believers in the first and second century.
You’ll find other news and opinions at my weblog, Get Anchored, including Gay-Rights Train Wreck and Three Things Christians Must Highlight.  To keep up with the weblog, sign up for e-mail updates or assign the RSS feed to your news reader.

Do you know friends who would appreciate Winning Ways?  Just forward this e-mail to them!

Have you subscribed to Winning Ways?  You can subscribe by clicking here and following the instructions.  Your e-mail address will not be sold or given away to anyone, and you can automatically change your subscription or drop it by following the easy steps provided with each e-mail.



MANAGE YOUR SUBSCRIPTIONS TO OUR EMAIL NEWSLETTERS:  Click here.  If you do not have access to the web, please send a note to to tell us of any changes you would like to make.