Thursday, January 20, 2011

A Surprise Invitation

Worship had just ended and Wendy came directly for us. She put out her hand and introduced herself and her husband. As we had typical introductory words she asked something that I really did not expect. Wendy said, “Have you guys been invited to a small group yet? Would you come to ours?” It was our first Sunday at this church!

Theresa and I have visited many churches over the years. Mostly when on vacation but this time we were visiting churches after moving to a new area because of work. I was not the pastor at a church but we were looking to be regular attendees. That morning we decided that this was the church for us! Of all the churches we explored, most were similar in many ways but this church was set apart. This one was different because Wendy and her husband David saw a new family and did not hesitate to extend an invitation to a small group that was a very important part of their own lives.

Good small group life has that effect on people. Good small group life is about worship and applying the Bible to everyday life but the most important component are relationships! Healthy relationships invite authentic worship of God because inhibitions can be set aside in the midst of caring friends. Healthy relationships encourage growth in the Word of God due to accountability, grace-filled connections and mutual love for one another.

We ended up attending David and Wendy’s small group. We formed strong relationships that are still evident today. We shared life together. Interestingly enough, we found that the DNA of that church was to value small group life. It showed through people like Dave and Wendy who invited freely and often to their small group. It is no wonder that there were many new groups formed in this church because of this grow and multiply mentality.

What about you? Are you engaged in a small group? Are you crossing the sanctuary to invite that new person to something that is a very important part of your life?

-Pastor David

Thursday, January 6, 2011

There is So Much More!

Last night I had a dream. The only part of it I remembered was a young child walking up to me and asking “Miss Sierra, Can I show you something?” The child took out five marbles and counted then one by one, then stood back with an accomplished look. I clapped my hands and said “that’s awesome; now let me show you something, there is so much more!”

I woke up and had a moment where I couldn’t just let it go. Was God speaking to me? The answer was yes as my mind started to race. I remembered all the things He has taken us as a church through in the past year; the plays, the move from the Chapel to the Worship Center, the worship, the testimonies, and the Word. I felt pretty good knowing how God has transformed lives and we got to be a part of it. But, then I heard in a clear voice (in my head of course, otherwise I would have been a little freaked out.) “That’s awesome; now let me show you something, THERE IS SO MUCH MORE!”

Mark 10:13-15
The Little Children and Jesus

People were bringing little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them, but the disciples rebuked them. When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”

Quiet your mind and think about how a little child would learn. Sitting at their parent or teacher’s feet like a sponge, taking in as much information as they can. Now think about how big God is and how small we are. How can we not humble ourselves and sit at the Master’s feet and soak in any information we can. Sometimes we are tempted to stand back feeling accomplished and stop looking for new information. This year let’s make it a point everyday to listen to the voice of God who IS speaking saying, “NOW let me show you something, THERE IS SO MUCH MORE!”