Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Sunday Recap August 1 2010

I love dandelions. I know, I know - they are a weed. But give them long enough, and though it doesn't seem anything is going on, they spread. And when they flower, it's beautiful. So I think God must love them too. But just looking at them, you wouldn't expect much. And yet...

You never really know everything that God has going on, do you? We really do "see through a glass, darkly" in this life. So the focus of a church and the people in it has to be following Jesus - loving Him with our lives and loving the people He places in our lives. Harder said than done sometimes. Circumstances can block your view of the little bit that you can see of what God is up to. But every now and then...

Opened the Kidmo "store" Sunday to a rousing reception. If you remember, Kidmo is a cutting edge discipleship tool for kids. It's high energy and high content that uses the latest in technology to bring the kids INTO the story each week and (this is what pumps me up) sends the story home with them in the form of the "MAP" or "Mission Action Plan" that they discuss and walk through with their parents each week. Well, we've put some incentives in play that encourage the kids to bring their Bible, return with a completed MAP, memorize their "Compass Point", and bring friends. Had a blast being the store keeper Sunday. I LOVE OUR NEW HOPE KIDS. One of the great joys I have in this job is being their pastor. So we had a great crowd over there and they had a blast both in SS and in the extended session (Children's Church).

Had a young woman come up after the service and wanted to know how she could tell if God was calling her to be a missionary. She's someone who deeply loves God and who - even though she struggles with illness - is very dedicated, faithful, and in love with what God has called New Hope to be and do. We talked for a little while and I hope I was able to give her some guidance. All the while I was thanking God for being a part of His work - not just here at New Hope, but through our missionaries - both the ones with that label through a denomination and those who are teachers, computer guys, granddaddys, moms, servicemen and women - through all the people God has blessed us with over the years.

The music set for worship was: He Reigns, Nothing But the Blood (Redman version), How Can I Keep From Singing, and In Christ Alone. Good mix of songs, and the praise team did great. Was great to have John Chandler on bass. He adds so much to the mix. We're working on some new songs and some old songs. Stay tuned.

We're walking through the book of Colossians and this passage, though brief, really illuminates both Jesus' role as Savior, and our state - both prior to coming to faith, and in Christ. Our culture tends to elevate the individual and give us affirmation regardless of our actions. Unfortunately, this has crept in the side door of the Church as well, and as a result we have people who are not truly believing that Christ had to die for their sins, because they don't see themselves as anything but a "good person." A recent study identified this and called it "Moralistic Therapeutic Deism." I briefly touched on that, but it's worthwhile if you are interested in the faith of millions today to check into it further.

I'm convinced that until we realize just how much we need a Savior, we will never truly appreciate God's grace. In that conviction, I stand with the author of the most beloved song in the church - "Amazing Grace." John Newton said this "'My memory is nearly gone; but I remember two things: That I am a great sinner, and that Christ is a great Savior.'"


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