Journey of Discipleship Updates: January 2017
In my recent sermon on January 1, I issued a challenge to the congregation. You see, I love setting New Year’s resolutions. The reason I love them is because I am a big believer in setting goals. I know, however, that goals without concrete steps or strategy are worthless. We all need a plan of action if we actually want to get to where we want to go!
Many people will set New Year’s resolutions for themselves. Many of those resolutions deal with losing weight or cutting out caffeine. I want to share my resolutions for this next year. For me, I want to be more Christ-like in 2017.In order for that to happen, I know I need to be disciplined and intentional. I offer these to encourage you to be intentional about your own spiritual growth and the growth of those you lead. Enjoy!
In 2017, I resolve to do the following:
- I will set aside time each day for God.
- My prayer each morning will be “May I be a blessing to someone today.”
- I am going to give more than I receive, in terms of relationships.
- I will condemn others less, and extend grace more.
- The richness of my year will be determined, not by how much is in the bank, but how much is in my heart.
- I am going to live joyfully, as though each day is a gift.
- I am going to be grateful for friends, family, and my church family.
- In a world that is incredibly divisive, I will be an agent of unity and love, as I witness to others.
- My battle will not be with people, but with spiritual darkness.
- In 2017, I resolve to live each day as if it were Christmas…and Easter!
Happy New Year!
On the JOURNEY with you,
SCHEDULE FOR REFRAME
For everyone participating in the Reframe study, there are two ways to follow the study. The first way is to plan your studies around the sermon series. Because we will run into Lent and Easter, the series will be broken up a bit. It looks like this:
- January 15
David’s introductory sermon for the series called: “Owning God’s Vision for His Church.” Just like the previous study, David will give this introductory sermon before the study begins.
- January 22
David’s sermon “Figuring Out the Story” partners with Reframe lesson one: “The Reframe Story.”
- January 29
David’s sermon “Pressed into the Wrong Story” partners with Reframe lesson two: “Cultural Stories”
- February 5
David’s sermon “How It All Started” partners with Reframe lesson three: “Creation and Fall”
- February 12
David’s sermon “Called As God’s People” partners with Reframe lesson four: “Israel’s Calling”
- February 19
David’s sermon “The Apex of History” partners with Reframe lesson five” “Jesus the King”
- February 26
David’s sermon “The Future is Bright” partners with Reframe lesson six: “New Heavens and New Earth”
- March 5 - April 23
Break for Lent and Easter
- April 30
The sermon “Here Comes the Bride” partners with Reframe lesson seven: “The Church and the Spirit.”
- May 7
- May 14
David’s sermon partners with Reframe lesson eight “Strangers and Exiles.”
- May 21
- MAY 28
David’s sermon “Attacking Culture” partners with Reframe lesson nine “Ambassadors”
- June 4
David’s sermon “Life in the Power of the Spirit” partners with Reframe lesson ten: “Joyful Living.”
If you’d rather not take a break, the second option is to go all the way through the study without taking a break, utilizing the videos as your primary source of teaching.
Regarding the videos, we have had a lot of inquiries about their length. They are longer than the last study, nearly 45 minutes each. Several people have said that this won’t work with the time allotted for their meetings. If the video is too long, you can certainly show a snippet and focus on a part of the lesson. The other option is to let David’s preaching content drive your discussions.
If you have any question or need further guidance, please contact us!
JOURNEY ASSESSMENT & SPRING DISCIPLESHIP CATALOG
There are a couple of way you can help the people you lead get connected to the journey. The first is our Journey Assessment. The Journey Assessment is our trail map. It provides an opportunity to self-assess and reveal to you that “You are here,” and will provide a starting point along the map of your journey.
Second, we have created a Journey Catalog. The catalog presents various opportunities to help facilitate spiritual growth and development. From in-depth studies of the Bible, to classes that challenge you to think about how your faith fits into your work, to how to raise your children as Christians, the catalog includes all opportunities within the church including, but not limited to, Small Groups, Sunday School, School of Discipleship, Center for Faith and Work, and Congregational Care Ministries. The spring catalog was just mailed out to all members and posted online.
As you have opportunities to lead the people under your charge, please know these resources are available to you!
SMALL GROUP RESOURCES
If you are looking for your next study and need some help, we have several recommendations we would like to share.
- That the World May Know
A number of groups and classes in our church utilize this resource in their studies of Scripture. Ray Vander Laan leads this video series and his preaching and teaching ministry is focused on understanding the Bible in light of the historical and cultural context in which God placed it. This perspective on the Bible highlights God's call for His people to be a transforming influence on their culture. He uses research of the top scholars in the fields of archaeology, history, and Biblical study as tools to explore the Biblical text ever more deeply. His gifts, expertise, and calling are to link that cultural information and the Bible so that its message applies to our lives today in very practical ways.
- Life With A Capital L
Many of you may remember when Matt Heard was our guest preacher several months ago. In this study, Matt escorts us on a journey of discovery: that Jesus didn’t come to save us from our humanity — Christ instead yearns to restore it to what God originally intended. Matt then explores ten key areas where everyday life can become extraordinary Life.
- The Life You’ve Always Wanted
An incredible classic by John Ortberg and one of my all-time favorites! You can live a deeper, more spiritual life right where you are. The heart of Christianity is transformation---a relationship with God that impacts not just our 'spiritual lives, ' but every aspect of living. John Ortberg calls readers back to the dynamic heartbeat of Christianity---God's power to bring change and growth---and reveals both the how and why of transformation.
- Total Money Makeover
Dave Ramsey is America's trusted voice on money and business. He's authored five New York Times best-selling books: Financial Peace, More Than Enough, The Total Money Makeover, EntreLeadership and Smart Money Smart Kids. If you have already been through Financial Peace University either as a group or in our School of Discipleship, Total Money Makeover is a great follow-up and one of Dave’s most popular studies.
CLASS: INTRODUCTION TO SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY
Systematic theology is the study of biblical doctrines in an ordered way. In this 8-week course, Dr. Scott Swain will introduce class participants to historic Reformed understandings of basic Christian beliefs by examining one doctrine a week: scripture, God, trinity, creation & providence, sin, Christ, salvation and the church.
Dr. Scott R. Swain is President and Professor of Systematic Theology at Reformed Theological Seminary in Orlando, Florida.
Register by 2/1.
SPECIAL EVENT: THE CHURCH IN THE MIDDLE EAST
FaithServes will be hosting a forum on “The Church in The Middle East” coming up on Sunday, January 22. There is more info on the event at the link below.