Monday, March 30, 2009

The Week in Review

There's been a lot of action happening this week within Grace Church. I preached down in Tucson on Sunday and was able to share our vision for Peoria with our sister church. Sunday night was the BBQ (see post below). Good times and good memories of crowds and wind.

We had an amazing community group on Wednesday night (for those that didn't make it, we prayed for you!) God seems to have given us great favor in our relationships with each other - and He's done so very quickly.

On Thursday night, Jeff and Ruth went into the hospital for the birth of their first child Luke. On Friday morning, they were awaiting the birth of their first child. On Friday afternoon, they were awaiting the birth of their first child. On Friday night, they were awaiting the birth of their first child. And 15 minutes after I left the hospital to take the kids home, Luke was born after 8pm at Friday night!

Meanwhile, we continue to pray and consider how God wants us to run our community groups. We had a great meeting at In and Out to discuss - the place where all great conversations take place.

On Sunday morning, the Grace Church worship team led worship at Sovereign Grace. It was so much fun to give praise to God together as a group! And then Sunday night I was privileged to preach at my old church, Grace Bible. Thanks to all who came to support me! We had a delightful time together in the Word of God.

Please keep praying for the launch of our church. People need jobs and housing. Pray that God would give favor to us as we begin to meet people in Peoria and lay out for them the vision of our church. Pray that we continue to build wisely and make good decisions. Pray that we all grow in our committment to the Lord as He leads us in this adventure of church planting.

Monday, March 23, 2009

One Wild and Windy BBQ

Last night was our first gathering in Peoria as a church plant team – BBQ style. And boy was it WINDY! At one point, a gust blew a cooler off the picnic table...mind you, the cooler was full of ice!  And it seemed like everyone in Peoria had the same thought as us because the place was a zoo. It made “kid watching” that much more challenging – hats off to the moms who were on kid duty!

But still, we had a GREAT time and met a number of nice people who have heard about the church plant. It made me want to get up to Peoria all the more quickly and begin our new lives together as Grace Church.

Thanks to all of you who came out and risked the wild and windy BBQ!

Posted via email from Chris's posterous

Friday, March 20, 2009

Peoria BBQ

Sunday night marks the first BBQ up in Peoria as a prelaunch team. I know of at least 5 families that are planning on coming to learn more about our church (and have some good grub). Please pray that this time would be profitable and that we'd be able to make a connection with some of these people!

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Book Recommendation: Jesus Storybook Bible

If you are like me, you are always looking for Christ centered resources to help in the area of parenting. One of the best books I've found is The Jesus Storybook Bible: Every story whispers His name, by Sally Lloyd-Jones. It's simply outstanding. It looks at the whole of Scripture as a narrative pointing to and fulfilled in Christ.

It's also extremely funny! My kids and I laugh at the very insightful ways that Lloyd-Jones depicts these stories. She has Goliath saying to Israel
"I'll rip your heads off and have them on toast!" David replies, "You're big, but God is bigger!"

Great stuff. My kids love it.

Here is an interview that was done with her if you'd like to read it:

Let's teach our kids about the amazing story of the Bible, the true hero and prince Jesus Christ!

Friday, March 06, 2009

On My Way Home

I'm sitting here in the Denver Airport on my way home from the Pastors College. What a great week! We sat under world class instruction in Dr. Kostenberger. We got a PDF version of his upcoming book, The Theology of John (which means I can copy and paste out of it!). I got to spend time with one of my close friends who is attending the PC, as well as stay with my old host family the Dustins. I even got pranked by the kids 5 times! It was a great week.

There are lots of things I am taking away from this class, but here are two:
1) I want to know the Lord. I want to learn the Bible more and more because God wants to be known and has given us his revelation in this amazing book. Dr. Kostenberger is an amazing teacher and exegete of Scripture - and though I may never be as skilled as him, it inspired me to keep pressing on in my study of His word.

2) I want to tell people about Christ. One of the main themes we studied was John's theology of mission and it is rich indeed. The whole book is waiting for his hour to come, and when it arrives we find out that his hour means his death. But his death is the culmination of the fulfillment of his mission and now we have the privilege of testifying of him.

I sat next to a man on the last leg of my flight and we started talking about religion. He was a Hindu and explained to me what he believed. He said he wasn't strict about following the religion, but he believed there was a God and that there were many ways to get to him as long as you sought to do good.

I told him my story of becoming a Christian and what it meant for Jesus to die on the cross for sinners. One thing I pointed out to him was that he can't accept Christianity as an acceptable way to God if he also accepts other ways, since Christ himself says that is impossible. We had a great talk and he gave me his number and email on the way out to keep the conversation going.

As I finish up my trip, I am keenly aware that only Jesus gives life, but he is on a mission to save the lost and I can be an instrument of grace to people around me. I'm looking forward to continue to walk on this journey of faith in Christ with the people of Grace Church!

(I'm also looking forward to getting home to see my wife and kids!)

Sunday, March 01, 2009

The Gospel of John

I'm travelling this week to the Pastors College in Gaithersburg, MD for a class on the gospel of John. It's being taught by Andreas Kostenberger, whom I respect very much and is a world class scholar of John's writings. Please pray for me while I'm gone and I will try to post some updates throughout the week if possible!

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