How are you? Growing up we were taught that when we asked each other "how are you doing", we were supposed to care about and listen to the answer. Now it seems that phrase is just another way of saying "hi" because if you really want to know how someone is doing all we need to do is check out their social media status. This week we ventured into our third "Lent Means Love" study and worked our way through John's first epistle (chapter 3 verse 5). Our theme was "Absolutely" and that will make a lot more sense when you review the video. But let's just say it opens the door for us to consider who we are and who we want to be, but most of all, who Jesus makes us.
What does the face of love look like? Our midweek Lenten series "A Strange Kind of Victory" continued as Pastor Krause took us through a study of Luke 22:61-62. In this lesson we learned about Peter's denial of Jesus and considered the loving look of Jesus as He went about the work of winning back His sheep.
What difference does Jesus make? Jesus isn't just some distant figure to believe in. What He accomplished on the cross really matters today and every day. This weekend our study of 1 John 2:1-2 involved a study of some crucial Gospel concepts that will us to see that Jesus is the ultimate "Difference Maker (Advocate & Propitiate)".
Directions - do you read them or do you just go ahead and try to figure it out on your own?
For our 2nd installment of "A Strange Kind of Victory" Lenten series Pastor Abrahamson took us through Matthew 26:52-54. In this lesson we admitted the issues that come from acting out of our own expectations and saw the beauty of what happened when Jesus followed the plan laid out in Scripture. We now have the privilege to embrace the fact that "Scripture Wins Over the Sword."
Have you ever noticed most people think they will be happy once they get something (like money or control) into their lives? But the not-so-secret "secret to happiness" is actually getting rid of, letting go of specific things in our lives. Another word for this is catharsis - "the process of releasing, and thereby providing relief from, strong or repressed emotions". This week we begin our Sunday Lenten Series - "Lent Means Love". We will be working through a series of lessons from the first epistle (letter) of John beginning with 1 John 1:7. Our lesson theme is: Let there be Light!
We begin our midweek Lenten series "A Strange Kind of Victory" with a study of Matthew 26:36-46. Pastor Krause takes us through an in-depth study of how "God's Will Wins Over My Will."
Are you religious?
That can be a difficult question to answer. This weekend we took hold of the fact that knowing God and being known by Him is so much better than any man-made religion this world has ever come up with. Our lesson, Matthew 23:15, encouraged us to spend some time "Unlearning Religion."
What makes a post go viral? Humor? Inspiration? Peculiarity?
This weekend we studied Isaiah 49:6 to look at the special gift God has given us, the "Viral Light" that is spreading throughout the world.
Someone is watching...
Big Brother, data mining, your personal information being sold to the highest bidder - seems like we are living in an age when just about anyone can find out just about anything on just about everybody. There is the old adage: "If you were arrested for being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict you?" Our words, our actions, send quite a message. But what message? This week we study Daniel 6:19-20 and find the prophet Daniel's words/actions sent shock waves through an entire kingdom, even the world, as he found himself - Facing Lions.
TRUE LOVE -- If you were raised "in the church" you were probably taught to behave yourself. Obeying God's holy Law is a good thing, as long as the reasons for doing so are also holy. When we examine our own hearts we often realize we were taught to obey out of fear, or guilt, or even the desire to look good in the eyes of others. But what God wants from us is the is the very same thing He offers us - LOVE. This week we wrestle with true love as we examine God's love to the Gentiles in a lesson from Jonah 3:6-9 - So God Loves.
Taken any big leaps of faith lately? This weekend as we study Ruth 1:16-17, we meet a special young woman in God's story named Ruth. As we study her life as a part of God's story, we get a beautiful reminder that God would have us experience life that is truly "Remarkable."
How's your reputation? This weekend we met a women with a pretty bad reputation. Her name was Rahab and she was a prostitute. But as we studied Joshua 2:8-12a we see what happens when God's reputation meets Rahab's reputation. We get to experience "REPUTATION RA/EHAB."
outside looking in...
...it happens. People form cliques or exclusive groups and it can make you feel like an outsider. In ancient times it was often rare for Gentiles to be accepted into Jewish circles, but sometimes God took matters into His own hands. This weekend we wrestled with a very unique group of Gentiles and saw how God brought them into His family. We studied Exodus 12:37-38 and got to know some Gentiles simply called "Many Other People".
Wait, who? Have you ever been listening to someone tell you a story and then they suddenly drop in the name of a person you've never heard of before? This weekend you might feel a bit that way at first as we learn about Melchizedek in Genesis 14:18-20. Not only will you learn a bit about this intriguing character, but we'll celebrate that God chooses to give incredible honor to surprising people. This weekend as ask the question "Who?"
EPIPHANY - If your calendar is like mine, on Sunday, January 6 there is the word "Epiphany" (from the Greek meaning "appearance" or "manifestation", thus "to shine forth". 1/6/2019 makes the beginning of the next season of the church year often called "the Gentiles Christmas". Usually lessons focus on the visit of the Magi or Jesus' escape to Egypt, etc. However, this year we are going to trace the origins and steps of God reaching out to the Gentiles through various lessons of the Old Testament, including our introductory lesson of God calling Abram. Our text is recorded in Genesis 12:1-3 and out theme is "YOU want me to do what?"