2 B Friends
2 B Friends: Ready or Not–Here We GROW!
SpeakerDwight K. Nelson
Since 1983, Dwight Nelson has served as lead pastor of the Pioneer Memorial Church on the campus of Andrews University. He preaches on the “New Perceptions” telecast, teaches at the theological seminary and has written some books, including The Chosen. He and his wife, Karen, are blessed with two married children and 2 granddaughters.
More In This Series
“2 B Friends:
Ready or Not—Here We GROW!”
□ The Research
- The British National Child Development Study (a longitudinal study tracking individuals born in the same week in 1958) reported in 2012 that of the men and roughly a of the women said they now have more than friends and relatives they get together with once a month or more.
- Regarding psychological health, these people ranked themselves significantly than the others with less friends.
- The researchers concluded: “Having fewer than friends at age 45 predicted significantly poorer psychological well-being at age 50.”
- The education men had, the more likely they were to have a larger social network—but the opposite was true for women.
- Being was associated with a smaller circle of friends.
□ The Reason
- “[Jesus is] our best and most sympathizing friend.” (5T 201)
vv 13, 14 The Voice: “‘ There is no greater way to love than to give your life for your friends.  You
celebrate friendship if you obey this command.”
I.e., when you read v 13 and v 14 together, Jesus isn’t so much describing His death the day
as He is commanding our willingness to die for our friends day.
Craig Keener: John 15:12 “is emphatic that believers must love one another in the same way that Jesus loved
them (cf. 13:34), which means dying for their , as Jesus would die for them (15:13-14).”
(The Gospel of John 1004)
- John 15:5
- John 15:12-17
Friends and fruit—what do they have in common? You must them both.
Because friends and fruit are all about .
3000 brand new radical followers/disciples of Jesus Christ
And how do they GROW? (Acts 2:42)
o They share .
o They share .
o They share .
o They share .
Just as Jesus taught in John 15—first, you with Me and then you with each other, and thus you .
The simple mission of the church in Acts: CONNECT.GROW.SERVE.GO.
□ The Result
- Five VIP points about GROW Groups:
#1—They are about friendship, not .
#2—They are about short-term, not .
#3—They are about “interesting,” not “.”
#4—They are about growing spiritually and . #5—They are about growing together, not .
Desire of Ages: “Love to man is the earthward manifestation of the love of God. It was to impart this love, to make us children of one family, that the King of glory became one with us. And when His parting words are fulfilled, ‘Love one another, as I have loved you’ (John 15:12); when we love the world as He has loved it, then for us His mission is accomplished. We are fitted for heaven; for we have heaven in our hearts.” (641)
Friends and fruit are all about GROW
Pioneer Operating Budget
During the early days of the Seventh-day Adventist movement, church buildings were few. Battle Creek, Michigan, had become the center for the Seventh-day Adventist Church. They needed to build a church large enough to house the rapid membership growth, camp meetings, and General Conference sessions.
Elder James White, one of the founders of the church, thought of a plan. He suggested, “If each month, every member would donate one dime, within one year we could raise enough money to build a new church structure.” At that time, the average price of a home was around $2,000.
The members adopted the project. On April 20, 1879, they dedicated the new church, debt-free. The “Dime Tabernacle,” capable of seating 4,000 people became the fourth church structure of the Seventh-day Adventist denomination.
The fund-raising plan was simple; Give a dime per month. A dime then would be equivalent to $2.25 today. Even though $2.25 is 22 ½ times more than a dime, it still isn’t much money in today’s economy!
Widespread participation brought success. When the members took this as their project, the Lord blessed.
When God’s people come together, like they did with the Dime Tabernacle, God will move hearts to accomplish His will through His children. “And he said, The things which are impossible with men are possible with God.” Luke 18:27
—North American Division Stewardship Ministries
Volunteers are needed by the Fellowship Dinner teams to assist with the preparation and service of the fellowship dinners which we hope to be able to resume soon. Teams serve about three times a year, so the time commitment is minimal, but your help is invaluable. Please let us know you if can help by emailing Ben Chilson at firstname.lastname@example.org. You will be assigned to a team that fits your schedule.
At the beginning of the summer, we hoped that the pandemic would recede enough for us to have a full-orbed on-site celebration of the cross at Pioneer come the fall. But alas, the unwelcome Delta variant means that on Sabbath, September 18, Pioneer will sponsor a two-phase Lord's Supper commemoration.
Friday evening (September 17) we invite families, friends, students, acquaintances to gather together to celebrate Jesus' own example of foot washing. "Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another's feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you" (John 13:14-15). Let it be a blessed beginning to a beautiful Sabbath experience.
Then Sabbath morning (September 18) in both celebrations (9:00 AM/11:45 AM) let's gather around the Lord’s Table to relive the deep significance of Jesus' sacrifice for our salvation. "How to Become an Influencer: The Last Aching Abyss." Once again, we will have sealed communion emblems for either on-site or in-home worship. The in-home emblem packets will be available for pickup at the church office on Thursday, 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM.
Jesus' wish for us all is clear: "I have eagerly desired to eat this Supper with you" (see Luke 22:15).
Our Pathfinder and Adventurer Clubs are back in session this fall. Join below:
Pathfinders text "PMCEP" to 269-281-2345 or join online.
Pathfinder Staff Members text "EPSTAFF" to 269-281-2345 or join online
Adventurers text "PMCFF" to 269-281-2345 or join online
Fall Grow Groups are here and we are so excited to have more than 50 groups available to join this semester! The session officially begins September 19, so don’t wait!
We have a variety of groups meeting every day of the week. Pioneer is continuing to offer groups both in-person and online, so we think you’ll be able to find one that works for you--whether you’re looking for Bible study, support, art, prayer, discipleship, or activity groups.
If you have any questions, email us at email@example.com.
The Darkness Will Not Overcome is an 8-part series that will inspire, equip, and empower you to live your best life possible. In every presentation you will learn practical ways we can experience healing, hope, and change. Whatever your "darkness" is—an addiction, a mental health struggle, dysfunction, past trauma, broken relationships, or lack of direction—the Darkness Will Not Overcome! Beginning Friday, October 1.
Neighbor to Neighbor (our local Adventist Community Services center) is currently looking for volunteers for their "Helping Hand Team". To respond, please call 269-471-7411 or visit them at 9147 US 31, Berrien Springs, MI.
Pioneer's new Collegiate Sabbath School meets in the Pioneer Commons! This is a place for interactive connections with Collegiates and with God, to study the stories of Jesus and what they mean for us today. Breakfast snacks will be provided.
Weekly on Sabbath, 10:30 AM
Location: Pioneer Commons
Are you the primary caregiver for your spouse or another person? If so we have a resource available for you. Care Giver's Support Group, Thursday evenings starting at 6:30 PM, at Neighbor to Neighbor (West entrance). You're invited to come and recharge your "batteries". For more information call Pastor John Glass at 262-825-3632.