Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Heaven on Earth...

Our verse this week is Matthew 6:10
"Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven."

I picked this verse to begin our new series on PRAYER, and since this is the part of the Lord's Prayer, and when Jesus was teaching on how to pray, I thought this would be a good place to start.... well God wanted to teach me more...

This past Sunday Night at church we hosted a Neighborhood Fellowship, this included our congregations, our Hispanic congregation, and the folks from the run down hotel across the parking lot. I must say that I was really excited about this concept because I feel like churches don't usually do a good job of reaching out to others, but this was a great example of us being willing to do it!

Well, we had planned for the youth to set up everything at 5pm while the rest were bringing food and setting up the buffet. So around 4pm, the Hispanic church was finished with their service and were playing soccer as they do in the gym, and it was so much fun for our youth and congregation to see part of their culture.
After a while we set up for the meal and the Hispanic congregation went on through the line, and then right after that the people from across the parking lot came and then our youth went through the line while others from our congregation helped clean and serve!

As time went on, the separate groups came to be one. It was no longer three groups, but one. One group of people brought together by Christ's love being shared! Our youth did a great job of meeting the kids and adults they did not know and playing with the kids, and after about an hour and a half, it was clear that no one wanted to leave. In fact there were even a few families that stayed until we had almost cleaned everything up and were just standing around!

Everyone was grateful, including the hosts! God was with us! It was as if God's kingdom had come, and his will done, on earth as it was in Heaven!
Even for this one night, which we are already planning to do many more times, Heaven on Earth was shared by all!

Monday, February 11, 2008


This coming week, we are preparing for a "Doubt Night." This is going to be a time where the youth volunteers and I will become an adult panel and address several questions that our youth have been asking on cards and putting in the doubt box.

Here are a few questions that have mad thier way int the box:
Which religion is right? Is it ok to have friends that are not Christian? Are you ever really forgiven?

I am so excited about this! Not because I have all the answers, because I don't, but because I want them to understand that it is, not just ok, but I believe nessecary to question "Why do I believe this?" about everything. This is not to make them give up on faith, but to strengthen it.

A couple of weeks ago in Sunday School, we were discussing the question: "When does faith become yours?" or essentially when does the faith that you have grown up with, when do you take it as your own?

What was great is that they worked themselves to the answer that at the point that they no longer just accept what people say as true and right, but they start questioning if it is true and seeking others and God for answers. They felt that at this point your faith starts to become thier own.

What was also interesting was that several felt that faith can never fully become your own because faith MUST be a communal thing. They felt some things must be a group issue or group belief.

I am still questioning this myself, but I think that I believe this to be true.

It is questions, in my opion, that help us truely understand our beliefs and why we believe them. I have much more to talk about with this, but I will save it for another day...

Another one of Ed's deep thoughts...

Click here to read one of Ed's postings

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Follow me...

Luke 9:23:Then he said to them all: "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.

The only way to follow someone is to know where they have been and where they are going...
Maybe some of the ways for us to know this about Christ is through prayer, scripture, experiences, and stories from other people.

Who are you following?


Luke 9:23:Then he said to them all: "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.


This is not a weekly one hour thing. This is not a when I get around to it thing. This is not even a most of the time thing. It is a DAILY thing. Being a Christian is not about being in a nice building and sit happy in our pews, it is about loving God with everything we've got and loving our neighbors as ourselves. Mark 12:30-31

What are you doing Daily? What cross are you picking up daily?

Take up your cross...

Now for the next part
Luke 9:23:Then he said to them all: "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.

Take up your cross daily.

This thought is simple, but very important: What are you willing to die for? What are you so passionate about doing you would give everything, even your life?

Now, take up your cross...

Yet another view point...

Here is what my fiancee Joanna wrote