Monthly Archives: August 2014

“You’re So Selfish!”

Join us this Sunday as we continue on in our Becoming series. This week’s topic: becoming a selfless servant. We’ll be tackling the topic of selfishness and how we can move from being self-focused to other’s focused. Here’s a fun video clip to lighten up a heavy topic.

Grace,

Chris

Fall Ministry Kick-Off

The month of September is a very busy time around ACC, when all of our ministries kick-off for the new season.  If you are missing one of the strategies of “Worship plus Two” (Worship + Grow + Serve), now is the perfect time to get plugged in.

Men

Come to the Fall Kick-Off on Thursday, September 28th , starting at 6:00PM to see what FUEL is all about.  Bonfire, BBQ, bags and volleyball.  Cost is $10 in advance or $15 at the door.  Email mens@acchurch.org to register.

Women

Women’s Bible Study season starts on September 9th.  We offer a Tuesday morning, and Monday or Wednesday evening study.  No matter where you are in your spiritual walk, there is a place for you to develop friendships while digging deeper into God’s Word.  Register in the church office, or online at www.acchurch.org/grow/women.

Growth Groups

Growth Groups meet weekly in homes and are a place to discuss Sunday’s message, get to know others from ACC, share life experiences and grow.  The Fall session starts on September 28th.  Contact the church office for more information.

Students

Our student ministries kick-off next week!  Oasis (high school) meets on Tuesdays from 7:00-9:00PM, starting on September 2nd; Pit Stop (middle school) meets on Thursdays from 7:00-8:30PM, starting on September 4th.  These groups are a great way for your student to connect with new friends while learning about how God’s Word affects their life.

Children

The Awana season kicks off with registration night on Wednesday, September 10th, from 6:30-7:30.  In Awana, kids ages 3 years through 6th grade learn Bible verses, hear Bible stories, play games and earn awards by memorizing Bible verses and completing projects.  Awana meets every Wednesday from 6:30-8:00PM, beginning on September 17th.  Children can join any time throughout the school year.  Come to registration night, or preregister online at http://www.acchurch.org/grow/children/awana

Families

Family Fun Day is September 6th from 11:00-2:00PM.  Fun for all ages!  Pie social/contest, dunk tank, lots of grub, face painting, and much more!  If you are interested in helping out at this event, please contact the office.

Serving Opportunities

If you are looking for a place to get involved at ACC, we have ongoing opportunities throughout the year:

  • Join the Worship Team as a singer, musician or part of the tech team that works sound and projection on Sunday
  • Join the Guest Services Team as an usher, greeter, café server or Welcome Center Worker
  • Join Children’s Ministries as a child care worker or Sunday school teacher

It is our sincere hope that everyone is involved in something that provides you with a dynamic and growing opportunity to live out your faith.

In Christ, Kris

 

I Love My Church

love-my-church-3This week I started a 14-day devotional plan on YouVersion called “I Love My Church”. I am 3 days in and it’s already rocking my world! The whole idea behind it is that the church has been around for 2,000 years – longer than any other government or human institution – and the church is still alive and well today. Jesus says in Matthew 16:18 that He will build His church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it. Colossians 1:18 says that Christ is the head of the church, which is His body.  According to Acts 20:28, the church has been purchased by Christ’s own blood.  All this tells us that from God’s viewpoint, the church is kind of a big deal!

I love Arlington Countryside Church.  This devotional plan is causing me to remember why I pour so much time and energy into our church – because God is at work building it, and He is in the process of changing lives every single day in and through our church.  That’s what gets me up each morning to go off to my “job” – there’s nothing more exciting than being part of a body of believers who are running after God together and following His leading, and inviting others in to the story He is writing in our midst.  I need to be reminded of how much God loves the church, especially when I get discouraged and want to throw in the towel and quit.  And I know we all have those days sometimes!

Check out this quote from today’s devotional, written by Perry Noble:

When the local church is working right, there is nothing more powerful and breathtaking in the world.  It’s the place where lost people are found, where found people grow to love Jesus more, where addicts are set free, where the excluded are included, where the hopeless find hope, where marriages are restored, where forgiveness is extended and where God gets the glory for it all!

What about you? What have you been reading/meditating on in your devotions lately???  Leave a comment below to let me know.  Tell you what … I’ll send a free copy of my CD Speak To Us to the first five people who leave a comment below!

~Scott

The Lord Our God

One of my current favorite worship songs is The Lord Our God by Kristian Stanfill. Here are a few lines of the song…

Promise maker, Promise Keeper

You finish what you begin

Our provision through the dessert

You see it through ’til the end

You see it through ’til the end

I find myself needing to regularly be reminded of the faithfulness of God. That I can in fact take Him at His word. That He will deliver on His promises. This song does that for me.

These song lyrics also remind me of Philippians 1:6 And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns. I’m encouraged by the fact that God’s not done with me. I’m a work in progress. He’s shaping me…making me more like Jesus.

Grace,

Chris

BECOMING

This coming Sunday, August 17 we begin a new Sunday morning teaching series: BECOMING.

 

God makes clear regarding the type of person he wants us to become as his followers. In this five-week series we will focus in on 5 things God wants us to be:

 

A 24/7 WORSHIPER

  • God is looking for people who don’t just worship him for an hour on Sunday mornings. What he desires are people who live out worship as a lifestyle. It makes sense. Jesus clearly stated that the most important commandment is that we love God with our entire being. That sounds like a lifestyle of worship to me! What does that look like? How do we develop a passionate love for God?

 

A RADICAL DOER

  • Never lose sight of the fact that he is the creator – we are the creation. He is the master – we are the servant. What role does obedience play in our relationship with him? James said that we are to be doers of the word – not merely hearers. How can we learn to always be obedient and gladly exchange our will for his will?

 

A SELFLESS LOVER

  • My observation in life is that the more concentrically focused a person is – the more miserable they are! A real key to experiencing life to the fullest is to put others first. Interesting to note that Jesus clearly stated the 2nd most important commandment is to love others in the way that we want to be loved. Can God give us a greater heart for others? How?

 

A BOLD WITNESS

  • Jesus used to the metaphors of salt and light to describe the influence he wants us to be in our world. What exactly does that mean? The idea of us being effective witnesses was so important to him that he saved his last words to remind us of this truth (Acts 1:8). In our ever increasingly secular society what does it look like for us to be representatives of Jesus?

 

AN ENTHUSIASTIC PLAYER

  • Once you join God’s team – there’s no such thing as a benchwarmer; everybody is a player, everybody is in the game! God’s team is the church and if you are a follower of his then becoming an active player is not optional. Your relationship to the church will largely define you as a follower of his. Are you in the game or are you just warming the bench?

 

What kind of person are you BECOMING? The choice is yours.

 

Join us on Sundays in the coming weeks – or at least catch the podcasts!

Peace,

Dave

 

The Power of the Personal Invitation

Just today, I invited a few youthworker friends to join a network that I’m involved with. I shared the difference it’s made in my life/ministry and passed on a email with all the important information about the organization. One friend responded pretty quickly and basically said, “I would have normally just deleted the email, but since it was from you, I’m intrigued.” I can relate to that thought! I get so many emails everyday…even emails about things I’m interested in tend to get glossed over, deleted, or “filed away for later”. BUT, a personal note from someone I trust changes the priority level of that email. There’s power in a personal invitation.

Let me encourage you to consider who you can invite to church with you. Sharing the difference it’s made in your life and extending an invitation may be just the thing they need.

Grace,

Chris

 

Being a Person of Faith – Even in Times of Crisis

elephant tail

Yesterday morning there was a large section of the sermon notes that I did not have time to get to. I planned to conclude my message by talking about the benefits of trusting God during times of crisis – unfortunately I made the mistake of having an hour’s worth of material for a 30 minute time slot! Below you will find a brief summary of what I did not get to yesterday.

By way of reminder (or perhaps you weren’t at church yesterday), we look at the story of the father with the demon possessed boy in Mark 9. This stressed-out, heartbroken dad set an example for us regarding how to cope with times of severe crisis. First, we are to bring our problems to Jesus. He brought his boy to Jesus – that was the pivotal moment in the life of this struggling family. Secondly, we are to admit our doubts. I think one of the most real and powerful prayers we can pray is: “I do believe, but help me overcome my unbelief!” When we get real with Jesus, he does not reject us.

Continue reading for another few minutes to learn of a few of the perks of having faith in God even when life is hard…

THE BENEFITS OF FAITH IN THE FIRE

  • Develops joy and peace (1 Peter 1:6-7, Philippians 4:6-7)
    • God is a supernatural resource that can sustain you day by day, minute by minute in times of crisis. Some days it will feel like you are barely hanging on by your fingernails but the day will come when you will be able to look back and see that God was carrying you. God promises a supernatural strength to those who seek refuge in Him.

 

  • Builds your character (Romans 5:3-4)
    • The entire New Testament makes crystal-clear that one of God’s primary ways to make us more like Jesus is to allow us to endure trials. It is within the crucible of crisis that God matures us into warriors for Him.  A little challenge: talk to a Christian who is at a more advanced life stage than you – someone whose faith you admire and respect – and ask them about the trials they have endured – I pretty much guarantee you that they will tell you stories that will curl your hair! It’s easy for us to look at other people in church and think they have a perfect family; they grew up in a perfect family; they’ve got plenty of money; they’ve never had any problems…but looks can be deceiving!

 

 

  • Strengthens relationships (Proverbs 17:17)
    • Times of crisis can tear families/relationships apart. But they also have the potential to make relationships deeper/stronger than ever before; very similar to soldiers who have shared a foxhole. In my 33 years of marriage with my wife Karen, we often cite the difficult trials we at endured has being the primary factor that has given our relationship staying power – we have bonded by enduring so many storms together.

 

  • Gives you ministry opportunities (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)
    • It is amazing how God will intentionally bring people across your path who are currently going through what you’ve already been through. Our family went through a couple of very difficult years as our daughter Lacey suffered from severe headaches as a high school student. As a result, most of her high school years were spent at home with tutors and it took us years to get a proper diagnosis. She suffered greatly. Since then, I have been astounded at how many parents I’ve met who have children with severe and chronic headaches. I always feel like I can comfort and encourage them in a special way because I’ve “been there, done that”. Maybe God’s helped you overcome an addiction, endure cancer treatments or survive a difficult marriage – the chances are he will bring people across your path going through the very same thing. Use the opportunity to encourage them!

 

 

  • Teaches you to let go (1 Peter 5:7)
    • When the roof caves in we quickly learn that we were not as safe and secure as what we thought – and that in spite of our best planning, life can still go terribly wrong in a heartbeat. The bubble bursting truth: control is an illusion. I keep on my desk a drawing that my daughter Emily did for me a number of years ago. It depicts a man holding onto an elephant’s tail. I see it every day, and it reminds me to let go of the things I cannot control. I cannot manipulate my circumstances to keep me and my family safe. I must trust God for that.

 

  • Pleases God (Hebrews 11:6)
    • Without faith it is impossible to please God. It’s that simple. When my children were young it always pleased me immensely when they would ask me for help, when they would come to me in times when they were frightened or distressed. It was never a bother – as a loving father I wanted to be there for them, and so it made me happy when they looked to me for help. How much more our Heavenly Father?

 

We live in a broken world. Because that is true, all of us are either currently enduring a crisis, just coming out of a time of crisis, or about to enter into a time of crisis (without realizing it!). May God give you the gift of faith and the grace to cling to him when you feel bewildered and abandoned.

Peace,

Dave