Just hearing these words can cause a myriad of responses- emotionally and otherwise. It can cause anticipation mixed with a little nerves, maybe even some butterflies in the ole’ stomach. No doubt, as some of you are receiving this in your email boxes this Friday morning, you’re already practicing the principles and the spirit behind Ready-Set-Go!
Interesting timing and parallel with the analogy of “Black Friday” shopping and the current climate and crossroads of our church. With all that God has been doing in the last 10 years or so, and the fourteen months of it that my family has been here, I would say we are in a position and posture of Ready-Set-Go!
Greg Prow (newly appointed elder) spoke last week on behalf of the elders (our executive leadership team) regarding where we are, where we believe God wants to take us, and how we are going to get there. What a great job he did! And, what a great response from you, the church! We have received an overwhelming sense of readiness, anticipation, faith and support from you. We love the phone calls, emails, letters (yes, people still use this form of communication) and personal visits. We love the questions, perspectives and possibilities you have shared with us.
We believe that God has something so incredible for the local church that will live in full surrender to Him. When the Bride of Christ takes seriously The Great Commandment and The Great Commission (which is the “guts” of Discovery Church’s mission, vision, values and strategy), there is nothing He can’t and won’t do through her in accomplishing His will.
Join us in this place and posture of faith, hope and love (1 Corinthians 13:13) as we seek to know Him and make Him known. Join us as we seek His face over the next six weeks in determining the exact course of action, timing and strategy in accomplishing His will through Discovery Church. Please continue to pray that our elders would love and lead God’s people well every step of the way.
Lastly, join me this Sunday as my dad, Ed Gatlin, (retired pastor of almost 40 years in the local church) brings a powerful word from The Word! Take a look at 2 Corinthians 5:17 and be prepared for the next step in Ready-Set-Go! I love you, Church!
This concept will be familiar to many of you. Several months ago I preached on what it means to be a covenant member. A group of covenant members make up a covenant community. We believe the Bible and governing documents support and affirm this model as well. OK- so what do we do individually and practically with this “covenant community” paradigm? I’m glad you asked.
For the last 13 months, I have preached (in one way or another) on what it means to live with the Great Commandment and Great Commission as the core of our mission, vision, values, strategy and overall goal. We have dove even deeper into what it takes to live like this- full surrender and obedience to God, through Christ, by the power of the Holy Spirit working in us and through us.
I want to invite you to join me this Sunday as Greg Prow (newly commissioned elder and new member of our leadership team here at Discovery Church) shares a powerful and descriptive message and presentation on what our next steps look like as a church. Greg will teach us what it means to be a healthy member of the body of Christ, what we are calling a “Covenant Community.” He will also lay out for us what’s necessary as covenant members if we’re to be all that God has called us as committed Christ-followers:
I look forward to another great day of worship with each of you! I love you, Church!
I know, it seems so meaningless in our current culture. In so many circles it has become nothing more than a pleasantry. People often say it without even thinking about what it represents, or even what they are really thankful for. The power behind being thankful is the intentionality and the motivation. So, what do you really mean when you say “Thank you?”
For this week’s thought, I want to stop and say with great sincerity and deep gratitude, “Thank You!” Our country is celebrating Veteran’s Day this weekend. I know, much like Christmas, we should be celebrating it every day. Here is a brief description I read recently:
What is Veterans Day?
“While those who died are also remembered, Veterans Day is the day set aside to thank and honor ALL those who served honorably in the military - in wartime or peacetime,” the Department of Veterans Affairs says.
It explains the holiday “is largely intended to thank LIVING veterans for their service, to acknowledge that their contributions to our national security are appreciated, and to underscore the fact that all those who served - not only those who died - have sacrificed and done their duty.” -(click here for full article)-
So much can, has and should be said about those who have, are and will serve in our armed forces. Although I have so much I’d like to say to express my gratitude, I’ll share a few quotes from those who can express it with greater clarity and sentiment.
"Valor is stability, not of legs and arms, but of courage and the soul." -- Michel de Montaigne
"To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with lots of pride in the heroism of those who died in the country's service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations." -- Woodrow Wilson
"As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them." -- John F. Kennedy
"We remember those who were called upon to give all a person can give, and we remember those who were prepared to make that sacrifice if it were demanded of them in the line of duty, though it never was. Most of all, we remember the devotion and gallantry with which all of them ennobled their nation as they became champions of a noble cause." -- Ronald Reagan
"The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here." -- Abraham Lincoln
So, thank you! I will continue to pray for you and yours who have and are answering the call to serve in our armed forces. I love you, Church! I look forward to seeing you this Sunday as we look at life according to Romans 12:1-2. See you then!
Hey parents of 6th - 12th graders! We have exciting news! Starting NOVEMBER 12, Fusion will now be meeting on SUNDAYS, as we begin our new series hosted at the home of David and Jen Carroll! We're excited about this new season. When you get to the gate, just give the Carroll's name, and let them know you have a student in Student Ministry.
Many roles and responsibilities are appointed in our society. Judges are appointed. High level positions within the federal government are appointed. These are just a few to start with. But, what does it mean to be appointed? And who does the appointing? These are great questions. I’d like to approach this from a Biblical perspective.
Appointed: assigned a role or job to (someone).
Another name for this is “ordained.” We can see all throughout the Bible where God ordains/appoints people for specific roles and responsibilities. What’s so cool about that? I’m glad you asked. Each person in the body of Christ is a very important member- each and every one (1 Corinthians 12:12-27). Every single one of you in the church has a role, responsibility, and important place of significance. In other words, we are not the same without each person operating within the assigned role God has given them. Yes! You are that important to God’s work in and through the local church.
One of the most exciting things as a church is when we have the opportunity to ordain/appoint people into roles and responsibilities within the church. Don’t miss this Sunday! We will dive deeper into what it means for each of us to discover our appointed place within the church. And, we’ll have the privilege to take part in our new elders being ordained/appointed into the work that God has for them here at Discovery Church! See you then! I love you, Church!
Have you ever felt a call from Lord down a particular path, but then somehow you end up feeling like God must have lost His GPS along the road somewhere? We see in scripture that God often placed a specific call on a person's life, and then it would take years for that call to actually come to fruition. Think of Abraham and Sarah, and how God's promise of a child was decades in the making. Think of David, who was anointed as king by Samuel, but had to endure years of life on run, trying to avoid the endless spears thrown by King Saul. So many times we are sure we hear God's voice, but then our external circumstances seem to stand in direction opposition of the call God has for us.
This was certainly true for Joseph, as we see in Genesis 39. As a teenager, God had given him dreams of being in leadership, of ruling nations, even being a ruler over his own family. As you can remember, his jealous brothers didn't take to that too kindly. In fact, this dream given by God led to Joseph being sold into slavery by his own brothers. Can you imagine how confusing and disheartening that must been? I mean, besides the sting of family betrayal, it also must have felt like God had abandoned his plan for Joseph as well.
As time went on, we see that God indeed gave Joseph leadership opportunities while in Egypt. Granted, I'm certain some of these "opportunities" were certainly through avenues Joseph would have never even imagined for himself. Consider the following:
"And Joseph's master took him and put him into the prison, the place where the king's prisoners were confined, and he was there in prison. But the Lord was with Joseph and showed him steadfast love and gave him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison. And the keeper of the prison put Joseph in charge of all the prisoners who were in the prison. Whatever was done there, he was the one who did it. The keeper of the prison paid no attention to anything that was in Joseph's charge, because the Lord was with him. And whatever he did, the Lord made it succeed." Gen 39:20-23
While his stay in the prison was temporary, it's important to fully ingest the reality that God was with Joseph even the depths of prison. God was slowly bringing His promises to fruition, with each twist and turn on the GPS being a purposeful execution of His perfect plan. Joseph gained favor with the people he would someday lead, from the least to the greatest. Joseph learned to be faithful in the small things so that one day God could entrust Joseph with the enormous task of leading a nation. Joseph submitted himself to the Lord through each season that took him from the prison to the palace. He submitted to God so that God Himself would bring about Joseph's success in each task placed before him.
Don't miss this Sunday as we hear Kyle Klaiber give us a word about learning to lean into the dry seasons, the seasons you never expected, the seasons you would not have chosen for yourself. God is in the midst of all we experience, and has great treasures for us if we can trust Him and listen closely for His voice. We look forward to seeing each of you there!