Seize the Moment – Day 66

The Rest of God!

Luke 13

 

Good morning! This is Pastor Jerry Ingalls from New Castle First Baptist Church and today is Friday, May 22 and the start of Stage 3 in Indiana and at FBC.

 

The weekend is almost here and it’s Memorial Day Weekend—a long weekend for many! I hope you take some time to rest in God for whatever you are planning.

 

Jesus returned the religious leaders of His day back to God’s original design of honoring the Sabbath day in Luke 13:16: “Then should not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen long years, be set free on the Sabbath day from what bound her?”

 

Jesus’ ongoing conflict with the religious leaders was because He would not observe their rules for the Sabbath day, what Jesus called “heavy burdens”—a yoke of slavery put on the people. Rather, Jesus declared “Freedom!” in His easy yoke of grace where the burden is light.

 

One of the ways you know you are in the easy yoke of Jesus is your ability to rest—mentally, emotionally, and relationally, not just physically. Are you struggling to rest? Whose yoke are you in?

 

Your ability to rest mentally and physically from your unfinished work demonstrates your faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ.

 

Your ability to rest emotionally from your worries and anxieties demonstrates your hope in the sovereign grace of God.

 

Your ability to rest relationally from your need to have other people meet your needs demonstrates your trust in the Holy Spirit’s constant companionship.

 

We were designed to find our rest in the Trinitarian fellowship of God!

 

Seize the moment and rest! Can you prioritize time this Memorial Day weekend to find the rest of God by not multitasking God with the many other things spinning in your mind, churning in your heart or on your to-do or honey-do list? I pray that you strive to enter into the rest of God!

 

If you need a more personal touch from your church than this daily phone call, please dial the phone number below and someone will call you today. We are praying for you!  

 

 

 

 

YOUTUBE:

If you prefer a video, Pastor Jerry reads his devotion on YouTube as well.  Click HERE to visit the page. 
Videos are posted about a week after the devotion appears in the blog.
 
 

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Seize the Moment – Day 29

Stewarding Your Life!

Matthew 25

 

Good morning! This is Pastor Jerry Ingalls from New Castle First Baptist Church. Today is Wednesday, April 15

 

At the heart of so much anxiety and unhappiness is comparison. Comparing oneself with what others have—their abilities, their resources or possessions, their jobs or service to the community… whatever!

 

This is true because to compare yourself to another person is to miss the whole point!

 

In Matthew chapter 25, verses 14-15, Jesus starts one of His most famous parables, “For [the Kingdom of Heaven] will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted to them his property. To one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away.”

 

A primary lesson of Jesus’ Parable of the Talents is that we are not owners of our lives, but stewards—household managers of what God has given us! You may have a 5 talent life, 2 or 1, but that is not the point, so don’t it make it the point! Because, stewards are not owners…

 

What you have isn’t what should define you; those things are temporary. It’s your relationship with the Giver that defines you; that is forever!

 

Seize the moment and steward the gift of your life well by growing in your relationship with Jesus! Learn from Him how to be generous with what God has given you. Don’t compare yourself to others, but rather invest what you have into others.  And watch the multiplication happen… along with peace and happiness, too.

 

What are you doing with the gifts God has given you?

 

If you would like a personal phone call or need some practical assistance, please dial the phone number below and someone will be in touch with you soon.

 

God is with us!

 
 
 

YOUTUBE:

If you prefer a video, Pastor Jerry reads his devotion on YouTube as well.  Click HERE to visit the page. 
Videos are posted about a week after the devotion appears in the blog.
 
 

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Seize the Moment – Day 24

When Fear Wins the Day!

Matthew 21

 

Good morning! This is Pastor Jerry Ingalls from New Castle First Baptist Church. Today is Friday, April 10

 

Fear causes people to do and say hurtful things. Fear changes the chemistry of your brain as you go into survival mode. Faith keeps us calm and helps us make better decisions—ones that are more right and true for long-term thriving. My advice in the COVID-19 pandemic is unchanging: “Remain Calm and Pray! God is with us!”

 

In Matthew chapter 21, verse 9, we read this account of Jesus entering Jerusalem, to ultimately find Himself on the Cross, “The crowds that went ahead of [Jesus] and those that follow shouted, ‘Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!’” That is how the people of Jerusalem greeted Jesus—with faith! Hosanna–God saves!

 

Now listen to those same people days later, after their fears had been agitated by local leadership. From Matthew chapter 27, verses 22-23, “‘What shall I do, then, with Jesus who is called Christ?’ Pilate asked. They all answered, ‘Crucify him!’ ‘Why? What crime has he committed?’ asked Pilate. But they shouted all the louder, ‘Crucify him!’” Kill the One we thought was going to save us, but now threatens our way of life.

 

How do you react when you think something or someone is threatening your way of life or livelihood? Do you go on the attack and let your survival mode take over?

 

Seize the moment and Remain Calm…Pray! Now is a time for God’s people to be patient and to trust the Lord! Please join us tonight for our online Good Friday Service at 6:30 pm.

 

How can you practically help other people remain calm today and over this Easter weekend? 

 

If you need anything as we head into the weekend or just want to talk or pray with someone, please call the phone number below.
God is with us!
 
 
 
 

YOUTUBE:

If you prefer a video, Pastor Jerry reads his devotion on YouTube as well.  Click HERE to visit the page. 
Videos are posted about a week after the devotion appears in the blog.
 
 
 

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DIY Sunrise Service

 
 
 
When: Sunrise on Easter Sunday is 7:07 am, but you can find a time
that works best for your family 🙂
 
Where: Your own driveway, patio, or front porch
 
Opening Prayer
 
Scripture Reading: Matthew 28:1-10
 
Worship in Song (Access the playlist HERE):
 
  • Christ Arose (Up From The Grave He Arose)
  • In Christ Alone
  • Forever
 
Sharing/Reflection: During this time reflect prayerfully, or share with
others what the resurrection means to you personally. If you are
living alone, consider reaching out to someone else by phone to share
the hope of the resurrection with this message.
 
Scripture Reading:  Acts 3:13-15
 
Worship in Song: He Lives (Last song in Playlist)
 
Closing Prayer
 


Christ has died. Christ is Risen. Christ will come again!

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
If you would like a PDF version of this page (perhaps in order to print it out or share it with others), click HERE.
 

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Celebrating Jesus at Christmas (Week 2)

3 Wise Men and a Baby

 
The FBC Children’s Choir and guests present a musical  play about events surrounding the birth of Jesus. 
 

 

Cast

(In Order of Appearance)
 
FBC Children’s Choir & guests
 
Soloists:
Helen Estelle, Grace Logan, Kaitlyn Giddings, Bella Dailey, Lily Dailey, Nora Hamilton, Dylan Bunner, Jacob Hamilton, Aubrey Whitaker, Emma Durham, Jonah Kinnaird, Caleb Kinnaird, & Danny Hurst
 
Narrator : Haylee Brown
 
Ranger Shawn : Shawn Harter
Angel #1 : Grace Logan
Kid #1 & Kid #2 : Maxwell Richardson & Josiah Plumhoff
Inn Keeper : Caden Upchurch
Inn Keeper’s Wife : Kaitlyn Giddings
Joseph : Dylan Bunner
Mary : Nora Hamilton
Animals : Addy Durham, Brenna Evans, Lucy Kinnaird & Anna Plumhoff
Shepherd #1 : Jacob Hamilton
Shepherd #2 : Aubrey Whitaker
Shepherd #3 : Emma Durham
Multitude of Angels : Willow & Alana Ingalls, Helen Estelle, Bella & Lily Dailey
Gaspar : Jonah Kinnaird
Melchior : Caleb Kinnaird
Binky : Danny Hurst
 

You can listen to the production here:

 

You can watch the video version by clicking HERE.

 
 
 
 

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Grow: Mentor & Discipleship (Week 3)

Speaker:  Dan Buschow

#RIPPLESTARTER

 

II Timothy 2:2 These thing you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses, entrust to reliable men who are qualified to teach others.

I Corinthians 11:1 Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.

 
 

 

We must be willing to fight for each generation!

 
I have stood before churches in each generation with a youth standing by my side and asked the question…
 
“Will you fight for this generation?”  
 
The whole world is fighting for this generation of youth!  Society, marketers, political parties! 
Will the church fight for this generation of Gen-Zers?  We can’t afford to slip any further away!  Today only 4% of Gen-Zers have a biblical world view.
 

Are You Ready?

 

Growth and Discipleship

  • Being Christ-Centered – Christ is in the middle of everything in your life – Spiritual Discipline
  • Being Christ-like – Having and Displaying to your qualities of Christ – Kindness – Forgiveness – Sincerity – Caring – Accepting

 

Great Commandments

  • Mark 12:30 –Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. Are You?
  • Mark 12:31 – The second and greatest is this, Love your neighbor as yourself. Do You?

 

Great Commission

  • Mark 16:15 (TLB) Go into all the world and preach the good news to everyone, everywhere.
  • 28:18-20 – Go and make disciples of every nation.

 

21 Day Challenge

  • Learn to have a daily quality quiet time.
  • Learn to share your story in world.
  • Learn to live a life of joy.
  • Learn to be accountable to someone so you can be accountable for some one.

 

Ignite Passion, Purpose, and Faith in someone in their world!

 

Heb. 10:24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.

 

Four PRACTICAL WAYS TO BE A #RIPPLESTARTER

 

1. Desire to make a Connection

  • Look Up
  • Look Around
  • Use Your Sling Shot

2. Discipline to have a Conversation

  • Make the phone call, Send a text/private message, Email
  • Set a time and place

3. Delight when you find Common Ground

  • Ask questions
  • Look for where you are connecting

REMEMBER – #Ripplestarters ignite passion, purpose, and faith!

4. Determination to be Consistent

  • Cup of Coffee
  • Season of Life
  • Life-long Relationships

 

Think About This…

You cannot have a life-long relationship until you have a cup of coffee!

 

Let’s Start some RiPPLES

Wake Up

Stand Up

Speak Up

Rise Up

 

Isaiah 6:8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”

And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”

 

 

Listen to Dan’s Message here:

 

 

 

You can watch the video HERE.

 

 

 


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Grow: Discovering Love (Week 3)

“Our Response to His Rescue: Loving God With All Our Hearts”

Katie Kinnaird
 
Testimony:
1) Caleb

2) Young Life [deficit, busiest time of year,  emotional stress of caring for so many kids and leaders] = STRESS

Story: Jonah and his retainer!

How does it feel when you do something for someone you love and they overlook it? How does it feel when YOU know what you’ve done, how you’ve taken care of them, and they don’t realize of acknowledge it, or even worse, believe that someone else or they themselves did the thing you actually did?

 
We often overlook and fail to acknowledge God’s care for us. He has loved us and taken care of us truly beyond what any of us could comprehend. As our Father who has done everything he can to care and provide for us, God
wants us to love him in return. He wants our full attention, our passion, our appreciation, our deepest love. He wants us to love him with all our hearts, all our minds and all our strength- with everything we have.
 
Matthew 22: 34-40  Jesus told us that the most important thing in life is for us to love God with all our hearts, souls and strength. Many of us have heard this “most important commandment” hundreds of times. But what
does it mean? What does it look like to love God like that, to that extent?
Today we are going to go back to the Old Testament, to the passage that Jesus quoted when he told the people what the most important commandment was. Let’s look at the context of “Love the Lord your God with all your ____” so we can better understand what exactly that means.  And then let’s look at a Jesus story that puts some real life application to this most important commandment.
 
The context of this chapter: where have they BEEN. (Deuteronomy 6:21-24)
 
Moses is talking to the Israelites while they are wandering in the desert for years. They had been slaves in Egypt, oppressed as a people group for years until God miraculously saved them and sent them out on a journey to
a new place, a land that He promised would become their new home.
 
Slavery had been terrible; but they’d wandered so long that the people were in danger of forgetting what they had left behind. God did not want them to forget what He had done, where they had come from. Their suffering is just about over, and God is about to bless them beyond what they’ve ever dreamed. And God is warning them- when everything you’ve hoped for comes, don’t forget! Don’t forget that you didn’t do anything to earn this; everything you will experience is a gift (v. 10-12).
 
– God is giving them the full extent of his laws and commands. The previous chapter is the 10 Commandments. The first thing the Lord says before he gives them his 10 Commandments is, “I am the LORD your
God, who rescued you from the land of Egypt, the place of your slavery.” The context for the commands he gives is that He is the one who rescued them, gave them the life they’re entering. It is the memory of what God has done for us that motivates us to obey and trust His commands.
– Are we motivated to obey God? When we think about what He has done for us, doesn’t it seem logical to TRUST that what he commands is best for us? When we think of his love and care for us, it should motivate us to listen to God and follow him wholeheartedly. We aren’t motivated by obligation, we’re inspired by our love for a God who has done EVERYTHING for us.
 
There is a critical theme in Deuteronomy 6 of REMEMBERING and not forgetting. This famous Scripture that Jesus quotes, Deuteronomy 6:4-5 is called the Shema, Hebrew for “listen”. All throughout the chapter, Moses says, “listen”, “be careful”, “listen closely” “Remember what you were before” “be careful not to forget the Lord”
 
God knows how weak we are and how easily we get distracted. Raise your hand if you get distracted easily? The truth is we all do. We can all be out-of-sight-out-of-mind, especially when it comes to God because He is always out of our physical sight. We go through something hard, and God takes care of us. And then soon after, when things are fine again, we forget what happened, we forget what exactly God did. [**when is a time this has happened to me?]
 
We need to have a rhythm of remembering the things that we’ve gone through, so that we develop these “muscles” of trusting God. v. 6-9, 20-24. We need to talk about what God has done. Remind ourselves, remind our kids, remind each other. It should never be far from our minds. How long has it been since you’ve thought back and remembered what God has done in your life.  Reflect on how different your life would be if not for him rescuing you.
[**how would MY life be different? what has God done for ME?]
 
Summarize Deuteronomy 6, and the Shema.!
 
As I reflect on what it means to love God with all our hearts, soul and mind, there is a story about Jesus that I think gives us a clear picture of what it looks like to love God that much.
 
This woman hears where Jesus is, and she comes to the house uninvited.  This setting is probably important, well-to-do people; not her crowd at all. I get the image that she slips in, goes straight to Jesus. Imagine what she is
thinking. I don’t think she had a pushy attitude, I don’t think she was thinking “I’ll show them, I can be here just as much as they can”. No, I don’t think she was considering who else was there at all. I think her sole focus was getting to Jesus. He was the only one she saw.
 
This woman was causing a little bit of a scene. Imagine it! First of all, she is not dressed appropriately for this dinner; that’s how they knew who she was to begin with, knew she as an “immoral woman”, because of her
appearance. When this woman brought in the alabaster jar, and opened it up, the smell would have filled the room, drawing even more attention to what she was doing. Rabbis weren’t even supposed to talk to women in public, and they definitely weren’t supposed to touch a woman, let alone a prostitute. She slips in behind him, on the floor, low as she can get, and starts to pour the perfume out onto his feet. And as she does, she begins to weep.
 
Imagine what she’s thinking. Why is she crying? What is it about Jesus that causes her to have this kind of reaction? I imagine they’ve met before, or at the very least, she has seen how he treats “people like her” and she is overwhelmed with gratitude. His love and kindness have made her feel something she has probably never felt before. Worth. Value. Not like a failure or an outcast. And that has affected her so powerfully that she doesn’t even care about how proper it is, she just desperately wants to thank him. And love him back.
 
Jesus tells this story to illustrate what the woman is doing. And he says her sins, which there’s lots of them, have been forgiven. And since she has been forgiven of SO much, she loves Jesus so much. And he says he who is forgive little, loves little. You know, I think we could even say it this way. The person who understands how much they have been forgive of, is full of love. But the person who doesn’t understand how much they have been forgiven of, their love is weak.
 
When you have a debt canceled, it can change your life. Jesus has canceled all our of debts- and some of us are very aware of just how big of a deal that is. And some of us don’t consider it that much at all. This woman knew. She was aware that if not for Jesus’ acceptance and forgiveness, she was hopeless, both in the world’s eyes and practically she had nothing to live for. Jesus gave her something to live for and she couldn’t HELP herself from placing herself at his feet, trying to think of an extravagant way to thank him and show her love for him.
Because she was aware of her debt.
 
So what does it look like to love God with all our hearts? We have to remember where we’ve come from. We remember what we have been rescued from and what debt was canceled. And when we remember, when we think about that, love comes easily and naturally.
 
“I am the LORD your God who rescued you from your place of slavery.”
 
God has rescued us and he has cancelled our debt.
 
 
 

Listen to Katie’s Message here:

 

You can watch the video HERE.

 
 

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Grow: Spiritual Growth with Joe Bruce (Week 5)

Joe’s Garage

From Joe’s Website:
From his rich background as a children’s pastor, youth pastor, senior pastor, professional artist, father of ten and husband of one, Joe is able to draw from a variety of ventriloquist characters and assortment of artistic mediums to communicate his message with a unique diversity.
 
 
It has been said that one of Joe’s most amazing gifts is his ability to appeal to all people regardless of age, educational background, or economic status. His presentation is very organic and natural. His quick wit and clever characters will be sure to communicate redemption and restoration – a message Joe feels is essential in our culture. 

 

He uses the theme of “Joe’s Garage” as a place where he and his ventriloquist characters work on subjects such as character issues and real-life, relevant concerns in light of God’s plan and His Word. In his presentations Joe may draw a caricature of a child from the audience in under 60 seconds, paint a 3ft. x 4ft. likeness of Christ, utilize three ventriloquist characters, or cause a portrait he’s drawn to come to life and speak to the audience.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Joe’s diverse repertoire of creative and artistic talents and more than 25 years of hands-on experience as children’s and family speaker, gives him the ability to tailor the presentation to your specific needs.
 
 
 
 
 

You Can Watch the Video HERE.

 
 
 

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Belong: We are God’s Family! (Week 3)

Teaching the Next Generations

John 21:15-17

Guest Speaker:  Natalie Werking

These verses in John pick up after Jesus had been walking with His disciples on earth, died on the cross and then was resurrected and returned.  Peter had denied Jesus three times and here Jesus is bringing him back into fellowship.  Jesus asks Peter if he loves him three times.  You can tell it is hurting Peter that he kept asking…  Jesus doesn’t say “Feed my sheep” all three times.  The first time he tells Peter to “feed my lambs”, the young ones under 18.
 
Peter was not exactly youth leader material, right?  He has a hot temper and he denied Jesus three times!  What we have here is a picture of Jesus’ heart.  He asks Peter first to feed His young ones.
 
 
Today we are going to look at Generation Z.  Kids under the age of 20.  They are the majority generation today.  In fact they are the largest generation that has ever lived!  They are not the “next” generation, they are the current generation today!
 

Let’s look at some qualities that help to define Generation Z:

  • Tech Innate. They grew up in this age of technology.  (previously we were tech savvy, tech adept).  They don’t know a world without cell phones.  They can manage five screens at a time.  This is nothing for them.  They spend 5-8 hours a day on screens.  They are sometimes called “screenagers”.  They have access.  They can Google anything.  Their attention span is about 8 seconds (compared to a goldfish which is 9 seconds).  Technology is affecting all of us.  I used to go to Grandma’s house and make cookies and pies with her.  Nowadays she is checking Facebook.
  • Diverse.  They are the most diverse in history.   About half of Generation Z is non-white.
  • Women.  This is the age of women.  More females than ever are going to college.  Rates of females going to college soared last year.  We are seeing a resurgence of feminism.
  • Activists.  They are informed about what is going on in the world and they want to do something about it.  Millennials  before them were sometimes known as “slacktivists”.  They wanted to do something, they just really didn’t want to do something.   With Gen Z we are seeing incredible rates of volunteerism.  They are passionate about causes.
  • Success.  For the first time in history this generation says that their education and professional achievement are number one to them.  “Knowing who I” am is at the top.  Even hobbies and gender identity rank far above family, religion, race, money and politics.
  • DIY.  They want to do things themselves.
  • Morality Shift.  We see a shift in morality for the fist time in about 70 years.  Only about 34% would say that lying is morally wrong.   And they have enormously more choices than ever before.  If you sign up for Facebook you now have 58 gender options to choose from. By comparison, when Ellen came out in 1997 she lost her job and did not work for 6 years.  That wouldn’t happen today if a celebrity made an announcement like this.
  • 4%.   This is how many Gen Z kids claim to have a biblical worldview.  Remember that this generation is the largest in history.  So at a drop of 2% we are still talking about a very large number!
 
Generation Z is a blank slate.  They have no ideas about God.  30% are Nones.  When asked about their religious affiliation they say None.  They won’t grow up and come back to church because they were never there!  Knowing that going to church is the right things to do is becoming less and less – even in the “Bible Belt.”

In the 1960’s, there were 10 things listed as Biblical values.  The general population agreed with about 8 out of 10.  Now there has been a big shift and the distance from these values is much further.  Their questions are answered by Google and Alexa, not the Bible – not even their parents.

They are drawn to the supernatural.  And things are becoming darker.   They are looking for answers.  We are on the verge of a mental crisis.  They are losing their grip on skills for social interaction which makes them ripe for depression and all kinds of other problems.

The church can offer them hope and the answers to a lot of their questions.  We don’t want to be like the older brother in the Prodigal Son story and scorn them and say they don’t deserve better.  We want to reflect the Father’s heart.  We want to love them.
 

Matthew 18:10-14.    Where to Start?  The disciples have been arguing about who is the greatest amount them.  Jesus plops a child in front of them and tells them to be like the child.  He then tells the parable about the lost sheep and then he talks about kids again.  Is Jesus pointing us to kids?  Was anything Jesus said by accident?

He really cares about that one lost kid.  Leave the 99 and go out to find that lost kid.  There are lost out there.  Maybe it’s not about us.  Maybe it’s about them.

Barna’s Research tells us that most people (85%) make their commitment to Christ between the ages of 4 and 14.  From 15 – 30 only 10% and after 30 only 5%.   It’s almost as if Jesus read Barna’s research!

It’s not about us, but about the kids younger than 15.  Many Muslim countries forbid evangelizing kids under age 15.  They know that’s when it is most effective.  They allow adults to go to church – just not kids.  The fact is, if you want to change a country, you start with the kids.

 

 

John 21:3-6A New Reality.  After Jesus revealed himself the disciples were faced with a new reality.  Peter went right back to what his old ways.  He went out to fish.  It was what he knew best.  The other disciples joined him.  They didn’t catch anything that whole night.  Jesus showed up again the next morning and told experienced fishermen where to fish.  They caught more than they could handle.  Same boat.  Same guys.  Same strategy.  They just followed Jesus’ directions and changed location.

The end of John 21 is where I began today.  Jesus told Peter to feed His lambs.

We can stay here in our church and keep fishing, doing our thing.  What if all it takes is a slight location change.  An Easter egg hunt in the city park?  Dive at Parker School?  Where would Jesus have us cast our nets?

Cultural sociologists tell us we are on the verge of a major cultural shift like we haven’t seen since the 1940s.  Businesses are changing the way they reach this generation.  The army is changing the way they recruit this generation.  What will we, the church do to reach Generation Z?

We have a huge generation of young people that is globally connected, loves diversity, is passionate about activism and a good cause.  If we can reach them, I am convinced that they can complete the great commission in their lifetime!

 

Will we just go fishing?  Or will we obey Jesus and go fishing in a different location?  This generation is going to get fired up and change the world.  Will they do it for Jesus?  Don’t just go fishing.  Do whatever it takes to reach Generation Z.  Adjust a little bit for a miraculous catch!
 
Belong Week 3:  Listen to it here.
 
The Videos for this series can be found HERE.
 
 

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Follow (Week 6): Lead Like Jesus

The Elder Team

Chris Logan

Welcome A story about Daniel. With that welcome I know that the term “elders” has been a touchy subject at various times in our 110 year history There are many pragmatic/practical reasons a church might have elders.
  • Help the pastors carry the burden of pastoral ministry
  • Bring a variety of expertise through various ages, experiences to bear on the issues every pastor faces
  • To hold the pastors and each other accountable
The list can go on and on of the helping ministries elders can perform according to each person’s abilities
With that said I would briefly like to share what the Bible says about Biblical eldership.  I would say the best and only reason to have elders in a New Testament church is that the New Testament says to.
 
Titus 1:5 The reason I left you in Crete was that you might put in order what was left unfinished and appoint[a] elders in every town, as I directed you.
 
Acts 15:12 And when Paul and Barnabas had great dissension and debate with them, the brethren determined that Paul and Barnabas and some others of them should go up to Jerusalem to the apostles and elders concerning this issue.
 
Acts 14:23 When they had appointed elders for them in every church, having prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord in whom they had believed
 
Ephesian’s 4:12-13 12 to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.
 
1 Peter 5:1-4 Therefore, I exhort the elders among you, as your fellow elder and witness of the sufferings of Christ, and a partaker also of the glory that is to be revealed, shepherd the flock of God among you, exercising oversight not under compulsion, but voluntarily, according to the will of God; and not for sordid gain, but with eagerness; nor yet as lording it over those allotted to your charge, but proving to be examples to the flock.
 
There are many more passages that speak to the New Testament church and being elder lead.
FBC exercises a plurality of elders (def.; more than one) if anyone or group would like to discuss these Scriptures please reach out to us, none of us know what you are thinking unless you tell us.
 
We have open elder meetings the 2nd Monday of each month at 7:30 anyone is welcome
 
Closing:  Peter and Paul remind us that the churches we shepherd are not our own. We are overseers of Gods church, God’s flock. And so it is God’s Word that must have the final say. Jesus created the church. He died for the church. He is its only King and law giver. If we are committed to shepherding Christ’s church, and not our own, then we must be willing to do it his way.
 

Ed Bell

 
(This is a brief outline of what Ed shared)
When I was much younger I was shot by Debbie’s former boyfriend.
I grew to hate that man for what he did to Debbie and me.
You can’t follow Jesus if you hate someone!
Corey Ten Boom struggled with many things in life, one of which was fleas.  She learned to love fleas when God used them to keep the Germans from finding a hidden bible.  She also struggled with burdens in her life that were too big for her.  Her father taught her to let him handle those burdens.  He was built for them, she was not.
 
We try to carry burdens that are too heavy for us.  Like forgiving those who persecute us.  Those who hurt the ones we love.
G. Gordon Liddy says there are two kinds of people in prison and they are both stupid.  The convicts who deserve to be there and the prison guards.  The convicts did stupid things to get there.  The guards voluntarily choose to be there in a high-risk situation for minimum wage.  They choose to go to prison every day.  They are more stupid.
 
When I hold a grudge against someone who did something stupid I  “go to their prison every day” I am being stupid.  I am being more stupid than the person who hurt me.  When I carry that burden, I am shaming my Father who wants to carry it for me.  I am not built to carry that kind of burden.  I need to give it to Him.
 

Scott Underwood

(Scott did not get to share all of this because of limited time:)
Jesus was
Practical – met people in their daily needs and concerns, which lead into spiritual needs
Intentional – Jesus went where people were, specifically for the reason to engage them
Relational – Jesus acted in ways and used circumstances to build deep relationships with people.
 
Calling of Simon and Peter, James and John – from their boats –Matthew 4: 18-22
Calling of Matthew and Zaccheus – from the tax tables – Matthew 9: 9-13, Luke 19: 1-10
 
Practical, then Relational
Washing of the feet – John 13: 1-20
Cooking them breakfast – John 21: 1-22
 
Practical, transactional, but life changing and relationship starting
Woman at the well – John 4: 1-26
Healing lepers – Matthew 8: 1 -4.  Healed him, encouraged him to follow God’s commands
Restoring sight – John 9: 1-38
 
Scott shared about how he saw a man who looked destitute looking through a dumpster. he imagined getting out of his car, talking with the man, sharing the gospel, giving him some money and helping him on his way.  It was probably the Holy Spirit nudging him, but Scott never got out of his car.  He drove on.  Then he called on Tim to share a better example…
 
Tim Martin shared how God nudged him to pray for a lady he saw in a restaurant.  He fought the urging for quite a while – until it was almost too late.  But he obeyed…and God blessed him and the lady (and her husband).
 

Daniel Kinnaird

(Outline)
Passage: Philippians 2:5-8
– Jesus patterned his life and leadership in a way that is completely the opposite of they way our culture teaches us to live.
– Temptation of power: most of us believe that we leverage power to accomplish important goals and causes.
– Example: daydreaming about winning the lottery — I dream about everything I might accomplish if I had power, authority, and money.
– These methods are flawed because we are broken people. We are corrupted by our own pursuits of worth, confidence, and value in the eyes of others.
– These methods are not the way of Jesus.
– christian leaders (and christian people) will look very different than the world if they pattern their lives from Jesus.
– The way of the christian leader is not the way of upward mobility in which our world has invested so much, but the way of downward mobility ending on the cross” -Henri Nouwen
– Leadership in the church moves from leadership built on power and into a leadership in which we listen and discern together where God is leading his people. It requires deep trust in God and trust in brothers/sisters in Christ.
 
(This is a summary by admin)
Philippians 2:5-8  You should have the same attitude toward one another that Christ Jesus had, who though he existed in the form of God did not regard equality with God as something to be grasped,  but emptied himself by taking on the form of a slave, by looking like other men, and by sharing in human nature.  He humbled himself, by becoming obedient to the point of death — even death on a cross!
 
What kind of blueprint for life or leadership is this?  It is not a good one!  Who starts at the top with all the power and say that is not the way I want to lead my life?  The temptation for power, the temptation to feel important and be important is real.   I have been high and I have been lower than low.
 
I have been in places we would consider unimportant.  We all want to escape that kind of situation!  We all dream of being in a different place.  If only we had money, power and authority, we would do such good things.  That seems to be the reality of all of our lives.
 
But the way of Jesus is different.  His way is in opposition to money and power.  He voluntarily laid aside His God-hood and that is the invitation to all of us in our life and in our leadership.  Whether we carry a title or not we are all leaders:  of our lives, in our families, our friend-groups, in the places we work, and at school.  We influence ourselves and we influence others.
 
The way of Jesus is not the way of humans.  It’s not our way.  There is an author that I love who said, “The way of the Christian leader is not the way of upward mobility in which our world has invested so much but the way of downward mobility ending on the cross.”
 
The way of Jesus ends in death.  We talk about it figuratively like death to ourselves, death to our dreams, we lay that down for the sake of Jesus.  I think Jesus actually lived it literally.  I don’t like to think about it that way.  I really don’t!  It’s hard to think about that.  But that was the way of the one that we follow.
 
So I want to encourage all of us, as we live our lives, to look and to read scripture and model our lives after Jesus who lived lived completely differently – upsettingly differently than the way that we live our lives.  I want to invite all of us, including the leaders and elders to live in a way that sets down power and authority and trades it for love!    That we voluntarily forsake what seems to make sense, what would give us leverage to accomplish awesome things, good causes…that we lay that down in order to follow Jesus.
 
Because leadership built on power is not the way of Jesus and it can’t be the way we lead in the church.  We need to move from leadership built on power to leadership in which we discern together where God is leading His people.  That requires trusting each other and it requires humbly seeking God’s face in everything that we do.
 
Daniel then shared how God is pulling him out of being an elder and into Young Life where he can minister to young people.  He sees the leadership of Jesus in the hearts of those who work there.  They don’t do it perfectly because this is hard, but he sees how they sacrificially give of their time, that they lay down the power to love other people, make time for other people and make space in their lives to love other people who are sometimes very difficult to love.
 
Chris Logan then closes with a few comments.
 
Follow Week 6:  Listen to it here
 
You can view the video series HERE.
 
 

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