Monthly Archives: July 2018

An Unexpected Summer Adventure

An Unexpected Summer Adventure

Take an Adventure toward Personal Growth

It’s time to go on an adventure

You’ve turned on your autoresponder; it’s officially time to kick back. After all, summer vacation is one of the best times to be refreshed and renewed. It’s no surprise that we want an adventure on our summer break and that often comes in the form of reading a good book. Here are some intriguing book titles for summer 2018: “A Long Way from Home” by Peter Carey, “How to Stop Time” by Matt Haig, and “Less” by Andrew Sean Greer. While it’s pretty clear that a lot of us want to disconnect from work (and who could blame us), summer is also a great time to better ourselves.

Getting more out of ‘Out of Office’

When we feel that we need a break the most, that’s a cue that we’re missing something important in our lives. Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” Perhaps loving God means being more wise and discerning like Him. Those who will likely be more prepared to tackle life’s challenges are those who choose to grow (Proverbs 9:9). Here are some books we are reading that can take you on an adventure toward your growth as God intended this summer:

“Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don’t” by Simon Sinek
“Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion” by Gregory Boyle
“The Road Back to You: An Enneagram Journey to Self-Discovery” by Cron and Stabile
“Thanks for the Feedback: The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well” by Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen
“Everybody, Always: Becoming Love in a World Full of Setbacks and Difficult People” by Bob Goff
“Paul: A Biography” by N.T. Wright
“How People Grow: What the Bible Reveals About Personal Growth” by Cloud & Townsend
“Sacred Marriage: What If God Designed Marriage to Make Us Holy More Than to Make Us Happy?”
by Gary Thomas
“Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption” by Bryan Stevenson
“Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead”
by Brené Brown
“The Words and Works of Jesus Christ: A Study of the Life of Christ” 
by J. Dwight Pentecost
“Thinking About Christian Apologetics: What It Is and Why We Do It” 
by James K. Beilby
“The Wounded Healer: Ministry in Contemporary Society” by Henri Nouwen

Similarly, there are other books we would love to read, so let us know what you’re reading this summer!

Keep growing well after you’ve finished your book

Did you know you can stay connected to us when you’re traveling? We live stream our services every Sunday at 10:45 am and you can also listen or watch the service replays weekly on Mondays or Tuesdays.

How to navigate through transitions

How to navigate through transitions

He is the light that will guide you through change

Finding light in times of need

It seems like transitions are taking place in our lives daily. Think about the many ways we’re dealing with changes right now:  not only are the days are longer, but people are graduating, switching jobs, and even moving to new locations. For many of us, we’ve been here before, but some of us deal with change better than others. Like it or not, change happens. In the past, people handled change by keeping things the same, whereas nowadays we keep things different.

A philosopher recently commented, “stability is no longer the rule, it’s the exception” (Svend Brinkmann, “Stand Firm“). That’s an interesting take on change, but here’s an even more impressive take on change. Jesus was fond of saying things like, “Not a dot, not an iota of these words will pass away until everything is in the field” (Matthew 5:17-18 ESV). In other words, “not even the smallest change will happen until everything in this world passes away.” Jesus says things will not change depending on time, but we also know from Scripture that He does not change:  “He is the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8). He knows what’s to come, whereas we cannot foresee what’s to come. We can trust God to be who He is until the end of time.

Change in our lives should come from the difference in our lives. What I mean by this is, the comfort we get out of the transition we’re going through should come out of the place in our hearts where the Lord is working within us. Here’s an example of a shift that took place between the Jews and Gentiles, where Paul recounts that Jesus united them:

For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, by setting aside in his flesh the law with its commands and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new humanity out of the two, thus making peace, and in one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility. He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near (Ephesians 2:14-17 NIV).

So, how do we find stability in the midst of change? The peace we’re looking for in the midst of transition is the change God brings about in our hearts when we abide in Him (Psalm 30:5). We should trust not in the variables that exist in our lives, but in Christ who is a constant, who turns rebels into faithful followers, poor to rich, lost to found, orphan to the favored child, from death to life (John 11:25). Join us as we seek God’s blessing in our own lives as one of His calling.

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