Sunday, August 3, 2008

First Sunday of August - My Second Sunday

Over the first few weeks at NGWC I will be preaching a series of messages that have been birthed in my spirit as I have read and reread Jim Van Yperen’s book, Making Peace: A Guide to Overcoming Church Conflict. Last week I talked about what the church is supposed to be – the realm where forgiven saints live out the gospel. Today I challenged the congregation around the concept of who the church is supposed to be – a collection of forgiven and forgiving saints.

Everyone was given a blank piece of paper and encouraged to write down both sins they had committed that needed to be forgiven by God and hurts that they needed to forgive others for committing against them. The paper were then brought forward and placed at the base of the cross (the place of forgiveness) as they each received communion (the celebration of forgiveness) at the Lord’s Table.

I know that God’s Spirit was at work today within the congregation. This move of God was evident on the faces of a number of people and in the comments of several who spoke with me privately afterwards. Please join me in prayer that hearts will continue to be soft to receive God’s truth that can set us all free.

More good news today was that we have hired a new part-time youth director for our student ministries. The new youth director is Chris James. He is a young man with a heart for God and for teenagers. We will be introducing him to the congregation next Sunday and he will begin work on August 24th. Pam and I had lunch today with Chris, Courtney (Chris’ wife) and their two children, Christian and Kaileigh. They are a precious family and will be a great addition to the congregation in a number of ways.

We are still looking for someone to serve as a part-time music director. Ben and Dana Saunders are doing a great job and working hard to serve the church with their musical talents. This is another young couple that God will use in the coming years in mighty ways. But they both sense the need to have someone come along side them to help them and to guide them in the music ministry. Pray with me about this as well.

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