Last year a mixed group of youth and adults went on a trip to Mexico to build a house for a family in need. We partnered with Yugo Ministries to accomplish this trip. Here are some pictures from that amazing time.
News & Blog
Rick Warren says you can read the Bible or study the Bible. Study requires the use of a pencil and this helpful form which offers a place to compile the date, the scripture reference, your thoughts, how the passage impressed me, and my response to God.
If you are not using the form,record your thoughts into a Journal.
For more information listen to the sermon series Deep and Wide starting January 3, 2016 – January 24, 2016.
If the “Church” is living breathing people who have been caught up in God’s amazing grace and forgiveness. If the “Church is not an institution but a living organism- if the “Church” is God’s people not a building then who is the “Church” for? Some might say it is for God- and that is a correct conclusion. But wait- the “Church” is the bride of Christ- it was established by Christ- Christ is the head of the “Church”, isn’t it already His? Some might say the “Church” is for worshipping God. Also true but isn’t worship a natural outflow of what is in us- the Holy Spirit/God the father/Jesus Christ? Who is the “church” for? Some might say it’s for discipleship, training, encouraging, others in the Body of Christ (the Church). Sure, that is our calling- we are commanded to do all those things. But is that all we are supposed to do? Are we about having a holy huddle on Sunday morning and that’s it? And besides, that is what we are supposed to do as Christians but is that who the “Church” is for? I would like to suggest that the “Church” is not primarily for us but for the world. It is God’s presentation of who He is through imperfect people. If the “Church” is people dedicated to glorifying God and helping each other that is simply who we are in the transformation from sinner to sinner saved by grace. It is the natural change that takes place by the presence of God in our lives. The depth of that presence is dependent upon how much we allow God to be truly Lord (or ruler) of our life. So if that is the case the question is “Who are we (the Church) for? If it is simply for worship of God (which I might add is the CHIEF AIM OF MAN) then we can do that is Heaven. God could just take us to Heaven as soon as we have received salvation. The same could be said of the ministry we have to one another—that could all be done in Heaven. I believe that the reason God leaves us here on this earth (flawed as we are) is to influence people to God. We are to be light in a dark world. We are to be salt to flavor this world. We are to be a reflection of the glory of God to a world that needs hope, forgiveness, acceptance and love which God offers to all who will receive it.
There are times I sit at my desk and look out my window to the trees, neighborhood and mountain. As I sit there I begin to wonder about things. From these wonderments (I call them) many a sermon has arisen.
I have the privilege of disciplining 8-12 mostly High School young men every Sunday evening in my home. These are exceptional young men who desire God but also struggle with how this all fits with life. They have the same struggles as anyone but their heart is to do what is right in the eyes of the Lord. Recently we have begun a study of a book called “Do Hard Things: A teenage rebellion against low expectations” by Alex & Bret Harris. These twin brothers at the age of 16 began a search of what it means to be a teenager and what should be expected. I asked my guys “how have expectations changed from where you are today to when your father or grandfather were teenagers? They nailed it. They said no one seems to truly respect others today. Things like language, drugs, work ethic were all talked about. But one thing really caught my attention. One person said “I don’t think we really know what we believe about anything and we are afraid of really stating what we believe about something out of fear that we could be wrong or that we might offend someone.” I believe that is not just a teenage issue. Our culture is conditioning us with the message of absolute tolerance and muzzling people of faith with constant examples of bad Christianity and absolut intolerance when we speak our beliefs. My wonderment is how can we speak Truth with conviction yet do it in a winsome way? The Bible tells us that the Gospel message will be an offense to many. I can live with that. It’s not my message that I somehow thought up. It is God’s message that shouldn’t be watered down to be more palatable. However the offensive message of the Gospel is more palatable when it is lived out with humility, love, acceptance and forgiveness. That, my friends, is one of the “do hard things”. The Bible tells us in Romans 12:18: “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.” Sometime I would like to wonder more about this verse but for now I see this verse as a mandate as to how we present the Gospel. Not being argumentative, not getting angry, not accusing, not condemning. Easier said than done but that is the “doing hard things” for the sake of Jesus. Till next time- Gaylen