Monday, January 30, 2006

Victory in Jesus!

Hey!

Things have been going very, very well at Willow Community Church! We have seen God do incredible stuff in the lives of the people who have been coming out on Sunday mornings. We have experienced authentic worship and a deeper understanding of the Bible. Personally, I have enjoyed studying for Sunday morning sermon's. I truly can't wait to get to my office and rip open the Book to see what God is going to bring into my heart to deliver to the wonderful people of the Willow Community. We have taken a deep look at Ephesians 5:1-10 and 1 John 5:1-5. In both those passages, we have found that we are children of God because we believe that Jesus is who He said He is and has done what He He said He would do. We have discovered that every believer in Jesus as the Christ (the Messiah: long awaited, Anointed, Prophet, Priest and King) is a child of God! That's right, a bonified heir to the King!

Next week we are going to take a nice long look at 1 Peter. I think will need two or three weeks to sufficiently deal with what Peter calls our Living Hope and then how that Hope relates to our holiness (some people might call that sanctification).

Check out the map and come and visit us sometime!

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Choices

I recently had to buy a new car because some idiot slid through an intersection and clipped the front end of my 1996 Mercury Minivan and totaled the thing (that idiot is me!). A very good friend gave me an older car that I actually liked driving but it didn't have any heat and the defrosting motor didn't blow and couldn't clean off the windshield and the brakes needed to be fixed and the harmonic balancer needed to be replaced and the exhaust was really loud and the power windows and locks didn't work and the aluminum wheels didn't hold much air anymore, but the ride was smooth and floaty. So in October I decided to that it was time to get something a little more dependable. I looked everywhere and ended up buying a 2004 Chevy Cavalier. I love that car! It's a two door five speed in Silver Surfer Silver! It's the coolest thing I have ever driven.

So I'm on my way to a breakfast meeting with a couple of new leaders at my new church. I was driving east bond on Michigan Ave and I had to turn north onto Clippert Ave. I pulled up behind a CATA bus that was stopped in the median waiting to turn left. It took off and I followed right behind it. Less than two blocks later the dreaded flashing lights that immediately evoke a sense of panic in every driver that has ever been stopped, glinted in the review mirror. The officer approached my window and asked me if I knew why he was pulling me over. I said no. He said that I had ran the stop sign at Michigan and Clippert. I said that I thought that was a light and just followed the bus when it turned green. He reassured me that it was in fact only a stop sign and that I blew through it like a fork through whipped cream. I acknowledged that I was wrong. He looked into the interior of the car and saw a big ole stack of books with my Bible on top of the piled in the front passenger seat and then he saw the widow sticker of Jesus Christ that I have on the passenger side rear window. He looked me directly in the eye and asked, "Do you work for that guy on your window back there?" doh...! I had a choice to make right then and there! I could have said no, that I work across town and that I was just on my way to the office. But I just couldn't think of anything fast enough and so I said, "Uh, Er, Well... yeah, I do." As soon as I answered I knew it was the right one. I think there is power in identifying who you are in Jesus Christ. When the officer returned to the side of the Cavalier, he told me that the computer system in his cruiser was down and gave me a ticket to call and set up a court appearance. I have tried to do that for four days now, and every time I call they tell me that ticket number is not in their system. Go figure! Maybe God is honoring my honesty or maybe they just don't have the ticket in their system yet.

Sunday, January 1, 2006

Happy New Year!

This has been a wonderful day! I started as the new pastor at Willow Community Church! Instead of delivering a message in the traditional (preaching) way, we prayed through the Lord's Prayer from Matthew 6:9-13 as a congregation. Keep in mind that this was the first Sunday service that the people from Willow Community Church and a few families from Faith Church that felt lead to make the transition with Kim and me worshipped together. I invited two leaders from Willow and two leaders from Faith to help me and Pastor Dave walk through the images and ideas presented in the wonderful prayer first spoken by Jesus Christ over 2000 years ago. It still amazes me how applicable it is for today! Mrs. Dawn Carlson lead our worship in music and did a wonderful job. All the people who participated did everything I asked them to do so much better than I could have done on my own. If any of you are reading this; Thank You!! We finished off the morning with a really nice brunch.

I mentioned in my last blog the names of Dave and Anne. These people are awesome! Dave is my partner in minstry at Willow Community Church and his wife, Anne, is our treasurer. They both have a wonderful relationship with Jesus and I can't think of anyone else I would choose to start a new career and minstry with. They both have a heart for Lansing, MI and the church. They have given so much to the people of Willow and have never asked for anything in return so I would like to take this little corner of the blogosphere to thnk them for their willingness to serve the Kingdom of Jesus Christ. If you ever get the chance to talk to them, please tell them how much you appreciate them.