Current Series Fruit of the Spirit

How do people know we're Christian? Seriously. What tips them off? What about your life just screams, “This looks like Jesus”? There are a lot of ways to answer this question but the most obvious is, “by the good fruit we bear.” In Galatians, Paul gives us a great list of which fruit should be birthed into the world because of our actions. We know this list as the Fruit of the Spirit, and they include love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness/generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. To help dig deep into this list, our summer sermon series is looking at each one of these fruits by examining how Scripture shows us we can learn to grow it better and with more regularity. Every word in this list is significant; our individual and corporate lives need to be producing all nine of them regularly. And if one or more fruits isn’t producing, then we’ll know where our attention needs to be placed. In short, the world will know we're Christian by the “fruit we bear.” Join us this summer as we learn how to continually produce good fruit.

Joy

“A person will be called to account on Judgement Day for every permissible thing he might have enjoyed . . . but did not.” - Talmud This quote is an old rabbinic teaching found in the Talmud. It’s gold. Just run with this thought for a minute: We will be judged for not enjoying life. We often associate our fate by what we do and the actions we take. But what about the things we don’t do and the actions we don’t take? Could we be called into account for those? This new sermon series isn’t about our final Judgment Day, but it is very much about the things we might be missing, or at least searching for up until our Judgment Day . . . and that thing is joy. Joy is the bedrock of sustained faith. It’s deeper and weightier than happiness. It doesn’t dismiss or overlook or sidestep the pain of life; it actually consoles it. It lays at the bottom (or underneath or just beyond) the pain cycles we experience. Joy is the secret ingredient that we need in order to live faithfully as a Christian. This truth emerged for Paul as he wrote Philippians from a jail cell. Paul was in touch with his pain; he understood the fragility of life and accepted the fact that he may not make it out of prison alive. It’s why he so famously says, “to die is to gain.” You can hear his joy coming through despite his pain. So how do we live with this joy? How do we discover and claim it for ourselves? We have to work through our pain to get to joy. To avoid pain is to revert back to a toxic positivity that lands on the shallow realities of happiness or leaves us in the dry and weary land of despair. What we’re called to do as Christians is work through our pain in order to find the depths of joy on the other side.

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Come Alive

Jesus dies on Good Friday and comes alive on Easter Sunday. This reality means we now live in a world where death isn’t the final sting. Hope outshines despair, and our lives (individual and collective) are forever changed. We now live in a world in which people (through faith) can also come alive. And we need to learn to lean in to this new truth. To help aid in this truth, our sermon series looks at the scenes that immediately surround Jesus’ resurrection and pays attention to the ways in which those who meet the resurrected Jesus come alive in their own ways. Each of the characters sees a deepening, a change. They awaken spiritually and come alive to the mission of God or to unconditional love or to service, and this awakening comes packaged with purpose and hope. The same is true for us. This Eastertide, we will see how the same resurrected Jesus comes to us. The same purpose and hope awaits us still. It’s time we (as a people, as a church, as a world) come alive in Christ.

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Easter Sunday

"He’s Risen! He’s Risen Indeed!" |  Luke 24:1-10  |  Rev. Barrett Owen

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Palm Sunday

Today is Palm Sunday. The day rumors spread throughout the city. You aren’t going to believe who’s coming to town! Families stumble over themselves to prepare. Women grab cloaks . . . men cut palms . . . kids organize confetti. City officials sweep the Temple Mount and clean the streets. His presence demands it. His followers will love it. You aren’t going to believe who’s coming to town!

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Signs Along the Way

Some people need a sign from God that they are following the right path. Others listen for a word or a voice. Christ came to bless and give “abundant life” to all of creation, but there are times we are slow to believe it. The Writer of the Gospel of John records, “Jesus did many other miraculous signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name” (John 20:30-31). During the liturgical season of Lent, join us as we journey through five of the seven "signs" (miracles) recorded in John on a path leading us to the celebration of Christ's resurrection on Easter.

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From the Heart

God speaks in various ways by the Holy Spirit to those in relationship with Him; through God's Word, prayer, circumstances in our life, and through the church. In our "From the Heart" series, you will be encouraged and challenged by hearing sermons of how God is currently speaking to our pastoral team. Each person has spent time in prayer, intimately listening for the Holy Spirit's guidance. Come, journey with us to find out how God is speaking to them, you and our congregation.

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Advent

Hope. Peace. Joy. Love. Join us for our Advent Series!

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Thank you God

During this season of thankfulness it is important to take time to name the ways in which we can thank God for the abundant blessings received this year. During the month of November we will be led through a series of sermons helping us to focus on thankfulness.

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The Battle Belongs to the Lord

We all have private battles we are facing. You do not have to look very far to see and hear the public battles raging all around us. God’s plan does not resemble humanity’s, for God’s plan is greater than ours. God has certainly given us spiritual armor to fight with, but we must remember that the "battle belongs to the Lord". How then, do we remain steadfast and faithful through the battles of this life? Our sermon series will take us on the journey of a nation in pursuit of their next leader. We are reminded that our desires are not always God’s for us. God’s ultimate plan is always perfect.

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