In our current teaching series ReOrient, we’ve see that God has called and gifted each one of us in unique ways to be contributors to God's mission in our world today, not just church spectators or spiritual consumers.
Ephesians 4.11-13 says…
So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.
IRELAND MISSIONARIES & DINNER
On Sunday, we will have a special worship celebration with guests Gary and Beth Hodges, FCC friends and worship leaders on mission to Ireland. The morning service will be followed by a potluck meal together. Please bring a main dish, salad, or dessert to share.
Denny’s Story (adapted from Pastor Jimmy’s book 13-Foot Coffins)
Judges 11 tells a powerful story of how Israel cast out Jephthah because he was a son of a prostitute, but later begged him to come and lead them because he was also a "mighty warrior" and a great leader. Be careful who your church discards as an outcast. You may one day desperately need their leadership potential!
In the end, society always loses when the church ousts troubled kids.
Denny’s mother was a crack addict. His story had echoing parallels to the architects of the Columbine shooting. His life tragically ended just before his 21st birthday. But Denny was a part of the catalyst of what is now changing so many lives through Breakaway’s summer adventure camps for at-risk youth and children.
Moneyball is the story of Billy Beane, a General Manager played by Brad Pitt, who defies the way major league scouts have been approaching baseball for 150 years. This approach is fiercely opposed by the status quo. And it doesn’t get traction at first — so it looks like a failed endeavor.
The team is losing. Morale is low. The GM can't get his manager on the same page with him, and the media is roasting Billy for the new unconventional approach he’s taking to baseball. Even his protégé, Pete, is starting to doubt.
In a stroke of complete genius, or just sheer madness, Billy shakes things up by trading away a young all-star and a rogue veteran because they are bad for the clubhouse. Pete counters, “These are hard decisions to explain.”
Billy’s response is riveting: “Do you believe in this thing or not?” (Watch the video clip here and get the discussion questions from last week's conversation.)
If there was ever a metaphor for what the church is going through right now... it’s found in this film.
If there was ever an image to describe why we need courageous, pioneering, humble, adventurous leaders in the church today who are willing to ask different questions and thus receive different answers... it’s found in this film.
Perhaps the best quote in the film: “The first one through the wall always gets bloody.”
What if we’ve been trying to do church the wrong way… only we’ve been doing it for so long we didn’t even know it? What if the fear of shaking up the powers that be, the current religious establishment, and the fear of giving up our own personal comforts, were the only things holding us back from seeing real disciples multiplying in our generation?
We need leaders in the church today who are willing to risk everything to shake things up: to be misunderstood, critiqued, mocked, ridiculed, made fun of and looked down on, in order to get people to reorient their lives once again around God’s mission, rather than trying to get God to reorient Himself around our agendas.
It won’t be easy, and it won’t be accepted well, but if we have the courage to confront and counter specific religious systems that reinforce spiritual consumerism in the church and are providing resistance to God’s mission in our church cultures, we could end up finding ourselves a part of something very special in our lifetime — perhaps even a much needed revolution.
This past weekend, we began a new series called ReOrient. We want to reclaim the missional journey of redefining, and reorienting, our lives around God’s mission in the world today. We don't want to do church in a way that compartmentalizes God's mission or relegates it to two hours on Sunday morning: we want to be a family of people on mission every day. How do we do that? We become a Missional Community. (Read our model for missional communities here.)
This weekend, we will discuss the importance of every cell in the body and how every cell is either releasing life and resiliency in the body, or toxins and free radicals in the body (often unintentionally and unknowingly). Be ready to join the conversation. We are doing something different at FCC throughout this series -- something we've never done before...
IT'S SHAKING THINGS UP... and we are getting bloodied going through the wall!
Exodus 32-34: One of the surest signs of idolatry is when you are sacrificing for other things but no longer sacrificing for God. Idolatry is so subtle that it doesn’t have to replace our existing faith practices; it can simply become a part of them. But God loves us too much to stop bullying our idols. He won’t bully you but he will bully your idols. He will confront them, corner them, shake them, and annoy the hell out of them. Then he will drag them all the way to a blood-stained cross where he will remind them that you are bought with a price and your life is not your own. Your best days are still ahead of you, not because of who you will become, but because of Who God already is.
This week, our Hamilton Place community will be starting a new Life Group series that will take us through the book of Galatians over the next six weeks. Discover the freedom and life that we have in the Spirit.
All of us have seasons in our lives when we feel something is beyond restoration. A relationship that is broken. A dream that is shattered. A failure that left you demoralized. A hope that diminished. Maybe a faith in the goodness of God that became marred by the fire of tragedy and calamity. Regardless of what things might look like in this moment, nothing is beyond the reach of Christ’s redemption.
Join us on Easter Sunday as we explore Vintage Hope, the enduring supremacy of Christ, and what that means for us all.
What can football teach us about the game of life? What can a former Super Bowl MVP and future NFL Hall of Famer remind us about sacrifice, relationships, God, faith, the church, and being a part of something much bigger than self? Never stop loving the “game”! When you are no longer paying the price for the team, you are no longer a part of something bigger than yourself.
Many people rush into the New Year with lofty ambitions and New Year’s resolutions without properly evaluating, and learning from, the past year’s experiences. When we don’t intentionally unpack our previous season, we aren’t fully prepared to grow into the new season life affords us. With that in mind, I want to share with you some questions of introspection I like to use at the end of each year. I believe that when we deal with these questions in a very purposeful way, we are best equipped to set new goals and clothe ourselves with the right approach to enter the New Year with renewed minds, healthy hearts, and a fresh start.