Advent & Baptism… So much is happening this Sunday!

Advent & Baptism…

So much is happening this Sunday!

It’s the first Sunday of Advent.   The church will be all decorated for the season (I hope you’ll join us for the “Hanging of the Greens” party on Saturday evening!)  We’ll be lighting an Advent Candle during worship and digging into Isaiah’s prediction of a coming savior.   Our praise team will be leading us in music that turns our hearts towards Bethlehem.

We’re also celebrating a baptism and voting on / welcoming two new members!
It promises to be a great day of worship.   Come and help us celebrate things both ancient and new.

See you Sunday!

– Mac

What are you Thankful for this year?

Here we go… plunging toward the highest calorie meal of the entire year.   I recently read an article that linked each item on a typical Thanksgiving table with the distance you’ll need to walk to burn off those calories.   It’s quite sobering, to say the least!

– Glass of Eggnog: 8071 steps
– 1 Cracker with Cheese: 1647 steps  (Just one!)
– 6 oz of Turkey: 8000 steps
– 1/2 cup of Stuffing: 4235 steps
– Slice of Pecan Pie: 11294 steps

Yikes!  Pass the salad, please!

Thanksgiving is more than calories.  It’s a time to say thanks to God.   Thanks for what we have.  Thanks for the ways we’ve seen him move in our lives.  Thanks for his Son.

This Sunday we’ll focus on being thankful people.   You’ll have an opportunity (though it’s not mandatory by any means) to briefly share about blessings you’re thankful for this year.

Join us in giving thanks.   This Sunday at 10am.

Peace ~ Pastor Mac

One more thing…

We’ve spent the last few weeks learning what it takes to live a Distinct life for Jesus.  So now we’re all set, right?   We’ve got our faith-lives running smoothly.  We’re reading scripture every day.  We’re showing the world that we’re following Jesus.  We’ve got this!

Wait a moment.  The Apostle John said there was still one more thing we needed to do in order to live Distinctly for Jesus.

What’s more… Jesus said that those who didn’t integrate this quality into their lives would find themselves out in the cold when His Kingdom arrived.   Skip this last part of “Living Distinctly” and you’re in dire straights.

What is it that is so critical to our life in Jesus that ignoring it can affect eternity?   Come this week and we’ll finish the puzzle of how to live a Distinct Life for Jesus.

See you Sunday!

~ Pastor Mac

Ever notice how easy it is to “hide” your faith at times?

60980f81-e58e-4a91-bf68-731f68f35798You’re out with friends who aren’t into the whole ‘church scene’.   Suddenly the conversation turns uncomfortable…  you want to say something to defend your views, but instead you simply smile and nod.  It’s much easier to hide your faith than to speak up and risk being chastised for being ‘old fashioned’.

Here’s the thing:  You can’t live “Distinctly” and not have people notice the difference.   The whole concept of “a private faith” is a myth.  If you’re really living for Jesus, people will know the difference!

Come this Sunday and learn how to take your faith out of the sanctuary and into your Monday thru Saturday world!

See you Sunday!

Be brilliant!    Read ahead!  Click here to read 1st John 3:1-10

Do you smell like Christ?

60980f81-e58e-4a91-bf68-731f68f35798A Question for you on this rainy Friday morning…

How can Jesus’ followers attain a life that is distinctly Christian… while still being engaged with the world around us?  How can we give off the aroma of Christ… while living in a world that can be pretty stinky at times?

Is it that even possible?

This Sunday we’ll tear into 1st John as we launch a new series called ‘Distinct’.   We’ll discover the Apostle’s instructions for living a Sacred life in an ‘anything goes’ world.   It seems that even way back then it was a challenge to live differently, while still living alongside others!

Is your life ‘distinct’ from your neighbor’s?

Let’s find out how to live distinctively for God.   See you this Sunday at 10am!

Be brilliant!   Click here to read chapter 1 in 1st John.

Have you taken the plunge?

c26905e7-ec0e-4689-8c99-4de7a1813bcfBaptism!   It’s important.   Baptism is how people say:  “I’ve decided to follow Jesus.”

No one is quite sure where baptism got started.  What we do know is that John the Baptist was splashing lots of people into the Jordan River as a sign of repentance when Jesus suddenly showed up and said: “Me, too”

John wasn’t awfully sure about that… but Jesus insisted that this was where it must all start.   Moments later his family showed up to affirm that Jesus was the real deal…  and Baptism became forever associated with new beginnings in Christ.

Have you been baptized?  It really is important.  We have someone in our midst who will be baptized next month.  See Pastor Mac this Sunday and we can talk about taking this important step in your faith!

And yes… we’ll have a good message as well!

See you Sunday at 10am!

Are you ready for the big question?

notable-and-famous-responsibility-quotes-u4This Sunday we’re wrapping up our series on Responsibility with a question:  What are our responsibilities to Jesus… and how will we respond when He ‘calls in our accounts’?

That’s a bigger question than it seems!  We like to think that following Jesus consists mostly of trusting Him and ‘keeping our noses clean’.  But there’s more to it than that.  Perhaps a lot more.

Jesus once told a parable to explain our responsibility to His Father’s Kingdom.   It was a story about three servants who were entrusted with a great fortune while the master was away.  Their response to the challenge tells us much about what Jesus expects of us while He is away…  our “response – ability” to the Kingdom of God.

Come this Sunday as we discern this final — and vitally important — piece of the puzzle.  What is our responsibility to Jesus?

See you Sunday at 10am!

How to Face Impossible Odds

9ad78058-8802-4b74-8407-d390f73b0710Boxers will tell you that this is the loneliest place on the planet. Once you step into the ring there’s nothing between you and your opponent’s devastating right hook. One person will emerge victorious… the other will end up on the floor. It’s all on you, once the battle begins.

That’s pretty much the way I feel sometimes. Here I go, stepping into the ring. Welcome to this thing we call: Life.

We all like to be prepared for the battles ahead of us. We make lists, plan strategies, do whatever we can to better the odds.

But what happens when the odds are so far against you that they seem practically hopeless? What then?

That’s what a fellow named Gideon has to face. He has to face impossible odds. But Gideon is about to learn a lesson about fighting those really big battles in life. A lesson that we need to absorb as well, if we hope to make it through our most difficult battles.

Come this Sunday and we’ll talk about the really big battle Gideon had to fight as well as the battles we face… and how to come out a winner.

See you this Sunday at 9am! – Pastor Mac

Be brilliant! Read Judges 6 & 7 before Sunday…

Boxers will tell you that this is the loneliest place on the planet.  Once you step into the ring there’s nothing between you and your opponent’s devastating right hook.  One person will emerge victorious… the other will end up on the floor.  It’s all on you, once the battle begins.

That’s pretty much the way I feel sometimes.   Here I go, stepping into the ring.  Welcome to this thing we call: Life.

We all like to be prepared for the battles ahead of us.   We make lists, plan strategies, do whatever we can to better the odds.

But what happens when the odds are so far against you that they seem practically hopeless?  What then?

That’s what a fellow named Gideon has to face.   He has to face impossible odds.   But Gideon is about to learn a lesson about fighting those really big battles in life.   A lesson that we need to absorb as well, if we hope to make it through our most difficult battles.

Come this Sunday and we’ll talk about the really big battle Gideon had to fight as well as the battles we face…  and how to come out a winner.

See you this Sunday at 9am!  – Pastor Mac

Be brilliant!  Read  Judges 6 & 7 before Sunday…

Everyone needs something to hold on to in dangerous times…

7679b3ca-f39d-490f-82cb-105414664b07

Rehab ran a “house of ill repute” in Jericho around the time the Israelites were coming to knock the city down.  Her business was booming, but when two spies showed up at her door she quickly realized that things were taking a turn for the worse.

What Rahab did next had a big effect on the future of God’s people.   It also saved her and her family.   A little piece of scarlet rope turned out to be her life line!

What’s your life line when dangerous times come knocking?   Will it be strong enough to hold you?   Let’s talk about Hope in difficult days!

See you this Sunday at 9am!  – Pastor Mac

Be brilliant!  Read Joshua 2 before Sunday…

PS:  Rahab the prostitute was Jesus’ great, great, great, great… step-grandmother; an inconvenient fact that has put a twist in the knickers of stuffy biblical scholars for over 2000 years!  (Read the genealogy in Matthew 1). It just goes to show you that God can use the most unlikely people for His purposes… even us!  🙂