“Summer Reading: Persecuting Jesus” (June 25, 2017)

from Scripture: Acts 9:1-19

Despite our best intentions to do the right thing, we don’t always get it right. We sometimes tend to do more harm than good. God has to remind us that His plan for the world is to draw all people to Christ…

w/ Jeff McClain

“Summer Reading: Surrender” (June 18, 2017)

from Scripture: Acts 7:54 – 8:1

“Is it our best self that becomes the testimony to God? Or is it the place where you are dark and lost and now are found and known and loved?”…

w/ Reed McNitzky

“Summer Reading: Holy Boldness” (June 11, 2017)

from Scripture: Acts 4:1-22

“Therefore since we have this hope, we are very bold. This new way of living with Jesus, it gives us confidence so we can act with great boldness”…

w/ Andy Ellis

“They’ll Know We Are Christians: Enough” May 28, 2017

from – Mathew 14:13-21

Everything Jesus did pointed to the fact that God is enough for our lives. When we look about the feeding of the 5000, it is not just simply that Jesus could do so much with so little, it is why He did so much with so little…

w/ Vern Collins

“They’ll Know We Are Christians: Outsiders” (May 21 2017)

from Matthew 25:34-40 and Isaiah 58:6-10

Instead of hoping for Jesus to arrive where you are, what would it look like for us to go where Jesus actually is?

With Vern Collins

“They’ll Know We are Christians: Out of Order” (May 14, 2017)

from Luke 7:36-50

Do we have any hope of reclaiming the adage, “They’ll Know We are Christians…by our LOVE?”

Christians are known for a number of things today…is love…the love that Christ offers us, the love that Christ modeled for us, and the love that Christ calls us to one of them?  Or are we known for our hypocrisy?  Are we known for our self-centeredness?  Are we known for our exclusivity, or our neglect of those not like us?

What if the church came to be known as a place for those no one else wanted?  What if all of the, “wrong people,” showed up?  How beautiful it might just become.

But how is that possible?

Only by allowing Jesus to re-order our lives…

w/ Vern Collins

“Life Giving Rhythms” (April 23, 2017)

from Daniel 6:10

What if rather than working in order to be able to rest, you began resting in order to work?  For many of us that would be a seismic shift in our way of life…and yet, not only is it not outside the realm of possibility, it is actually the rhythm you were CREATED for.

A rhythm in relationship with Jesus that feeds your soul, changes your heart for others, and transforms your perspective on those things God has placed before you to do.

From Daniel’s life, guest preacher, Reverend Ken Shigematsu invites us into a rhythm of relationship with Jesus that doesn’t feel burdensome, rather it actually lifts us and supports us in the things we are navigating day in and day out in this life.

w/ Reverend Ken Shigematsu

“Easter: Not the End” (April 16, 2017)

from Mark 16:1-8

In each of the Gospels we are given an account of the resurrection of Jesus…that moment, that event which took place on the third morning when Jesus walked out of the tomb.  The event that changed everything.  The hope of the church, and the world hangs on that one event.  The one that says death and sin DO NOT have the final say.

We hear that story each year on Easter morning…hear that hope proclaimed.  But how do you make more than just the retelling of an account of something that happened 2,000 years ago?  How do you, like Peter for example, EXPERIENCE the resurrection…the LIVING HOPE of the resurrection…the hope that affects your life NOW right where you are?

Mark’s Gospel gives us an idea of how we might go from hearing an account to be transformed by this Savior!

w/ Vern Collins

“Disordered Love: Pride” (April 9, 2017)

from Matthew 21:1-11

Pride affects not only our relationships with others, but our relationship with God.  It divides and pits us against the One Who came to meet us at that very point of our weakness…at the point of our need to be at the center…that our lives and our love might become rightly ordered.

w/ Vern Collins

“Disordered Love: Greed” (March 12, 2017)

from Luke 12:13-21

Is enough enough?

It seems like a simple enough question…perhaps even a bit ridiculous, but when you consider what you really need for this life…is enough enough?

On top of that, when you consider what you have been so freely given in the sacrifice of Jesus so that you might have life…what more do you need?

When does abundance become greed?  When does blessing become excess?  In Jesus’ parable in Luke’s Gospel, he challenges our tendency to want to “store away” for a future…a future that God has already secured.

w/ Vern Collins

“Disordered Love: Gluttony” (March 5, 2017)

from Matthew 6:25-33

As we enter the season of Lent, we begin by considering St. Augustine’s idea that one of the marks of a Christ-honoring life is that our love is properly ordered….God first, other, even enemies, as well as self.  While this seems good and right, the truth is, we spend much of our life loving in a way that is disordered…and at the core, the result is sin.

What happens when we love the things of God more than God?  What happens when we use the things God has given us as a substitute for God, or when we turn to those things as a way of escape?  When we worry about having, not just what we need, but what we want…and enough of what we want, then we have allowed our love to disorder our understanding of what is necessary in this life.

What if the goal was not all?  What if the goal was not even enough?  What if the goal was God?  What if rather than covering your weakness with excess, you took this season of Lent to rest in your brokenness and frailty and allowed God to meet you in that place?

w/ Vern Collins

“Life Together: Redeemed” (February 26, 2017)

from 2 Corinthians 5:16-21

The foundation for our call to relationship with others is found in the relationship made possible by God’s willingness to look at our broken relationship with Him and move to make things right.  Not because God had somehow wronged us, but because God is gracious to we who have wronged Him.

We are called to take up the cause of bringing the world around us to reconciliation with God…but in order to do that we have to be willing to step outside of our small worldview and live lives in response to the grace offered by God to us through Jesus.

When we view that sacrifice for what it is and what it accomplished, then our view of the world around us begins to change.

w/ Vern Collins

“Life Together: Loving Well” (February 19, 2017)

from Romans 12

Loving well is not like sleep well.  IF things go smoothly during the night, if there are no worries, if kids don’t wake you up, if there are no nightmares then maybe you will sleep well.

But loving well should not be left up to such chance.  God is not a God of luck, God is a God of intentionality…in the way He loves us and in the way He calls us to love others.

Paul gives us a model for how we are to achieve the kind of love that is a reflection of the relationship from which we were created…the relationship of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

It begins with grace.

w/ Vern Collins

“Life Together: Made For Each Other” (February 5, 2017)

from Genesis 1:26-27

Our lives tend to be a web of relationships.  Marriage, family, dating, friendship, classmate, co-worker, employee and employer, proponent and opponent of an issue or idea…

Relationships can often be a source of great joy or they can be a source of great pain in our lives.  There are times when we find ourselves seeking isolation because we have been so wounded by relationships…and there are times when without realizing it, we find ourselves living in a “functional isolation” born our of the illusion of connection we create through social media.

To say that relationship is complicated is an understatement…but what if we saw relationship not just as a challenge we have to navigate, rather something for which we were actually created?

Imagine how you might begin to look at God, and humanity around you differently if you lived like you were created for connection with both.

w/ Vern Collins

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