Hebrews 11.1 (CEB)
Faith is the reality of what we hope for, the proof of what we don't see.
The season of Easter has just begun. We might believe that Easter is but only one day in our life, however Eastertide, as it is called, lasts until the day before Pentecost on May 15th. During this season the church universal will realize the many and multifaceted ways that the resurrection plays into our lives as followers of Jesus.
Because of the influencing nature of resurrection, we begin a new series called “Faithing.” Adding an "ing" to faith helps us to imagine that faith is an action word, a verb. Faith is not something that we believe with our heads, as if facts are the only way for us to encounter the world. Faith is also a heart thing that goes beyond fact to truth. It goes beyond simply personal belief; instead our defining faith becomes very public and communal that is lived in and through our often ordinary, occasionally electrifying lives.
So I invite you all to be part and find ways to be “faithing” in your living. By being intentional about our faith, we name the places where we make decisions based on our faith. Intentionality shapes who we choose to interact with and how we do so. The invitation is clear that in everything we are to live our faith in ways that promote justice, expresses mercy, and be humble with God and with one another.
Naming brings awareness, and once noticed, we can then again practice faithing in mature, active, and robust ways. See you Sunday...
Grace and peace,
Romans 8:38-39 (CEB)
I’m convinced that nothing can separate us from God’s love in Christ Jesus our Lord: not death or life, not angels or rulers, not present things or future things, not powers or height or depth, or any other thing that is created.
This is Holy Week. Beginning with Palm Sunday, with shouts of praise, we witness to what God is doing in Jesus. We move with the crowd, noticing that there are fewer around us on Maundy Thursday. Maundy Thursday is the day we recognize God’s mandate to love as Jesus has showed us to love. And still the crowd dwindles for the toughest day: Good Friday. It is there that Jesus is betrayed, arrested, denied, beaten, and nailed on a cross and died.
This week is a tough one by any stretch of the imagination. What we are invited to see is how we might be part of what God has done in Jesus. Jesus was not sent to die so that God could somehow love us. Instead Jesus’ death shows us how much God loves us by entering into our world, living among us, and knowing the pain of betrayal and death.
We are resurrection people. Christians are invited into a love story that says that nothing can separate any of us from the love of God we know in Jesus Christ. Jesus died because he made people uncomfortable in knowing that to be fully alive is to fully give yourself to others. It is one teaching that we struggle with and one that we are invited to live into, God helping us all.
May God, who sustained our Lord Jesus in the hour of his trial, under-gird you with faith and hope and love during this Holy week.
Grace and peace,
Ecclesiastes 3.11 (CEB)
God has made everything fitting in its time, but also placed eternity in their hearts, without enabling them to discover what God has done from the beginning to end.
As the scripture helps us imagine, there is a season for everything. And though we hate to have endings, the reality is that life is filled with its fair share of hellos and goodbyes. Skyler Baker has decided to resign as the Youth Ministries Director of PasPorte Youth.
We are extremely grateful for Skyler and the gifts that he shared with us in youth ministry. He is an indelible part of who we are and I know that each of us will miss his leadership, his presence, and his ministry. Skyler’s final day as Youth Ministries Director of PasPorte Youth will be March 20th. His last day with LPCC will be March 13th. On this day, we will have an opportunity to celebrate our shared life together, the many wonderful memories, and show him our support, gratefulness, and love.
We are still committed to the ongoing ministry for youth. The Youth Committee is already working hard to ensure that we will still have ongoing opportunities. If you have any questions please let Rev. Brian know your questions or concerns.
Grace and peace,
Isaiah 43.19 (CEB)
Look! I'm doing a new thing; now it sprouts up; don't you recognize it? I'm making a way in the desert, paths in the wilderness.
I have been meeting with a group from the church that is thinking together on what renewal means for LPCC. Beginning with an understanding that God’s mission in Jesus Christ is to reconcile us all. This reconciliation in Jesus makes us all new creations. We are all invited to live in response to God’s mission.
We really all want better things for the future of the church, however we tend to think that a bigger parking lot or more vibrant worship are the keys to success. Starting from our wants only ends up with our wants met and our need for God goes quietly unnoticed.
Renewal takes us to a deeper level. Renewal invites us to discern, celebrate, and participate in God’s mission afresh. As I have often said the mission of the church never changes, what we do and how we get there will be different. Renewal will ask us to bring the Good News of the Kingdom of God with the real hungers and real challenges of our world. Renewal invites us to be a disciplined community. Renewal invites us to think differently and respond in different ways. Renewal is a call to “all hands on deck” as we move through this process.
Please be in prayer for this group. Please pray for your part that you will be open to what God is doing in and through you. Because this we know: God is about new creations and thankfully you and I are included.
Grace and peace,
*Used in whole or in part the material prepared by THE CENTER FOR PARISH DEVELOPMENT, Module: Getting Ready for Renewal: #1 It Starts with God’s Mission.
Husband, father, minister, child of God, follower of Jesus Christ writing in the context of La Porte Community Church