Mid-Week Memo

Hey Five Oakers,

I have quite a few things I want to share with you today:

#1- We completed the "A Praying Life" series on Luke 11:1-13. I hope it was a boost to your praying life. But the bottom line is the only lasting boost is growing in greater knowledge of our dependence on God. As I said on the weekend, you don't need discipline to ask for directions when it's the last resort to get to your destination. I can't live the life God designed for me without him...every step of the way. I need God all the time. It's just that I don't get that. But I'm getting it more and more.

#2- I hope the story I read from Paul Millers book whets your appetite for the book. His book is filled with stories like that one that you'll never forget and will impact how you pray.

#3- I've been at a pastor's meeting in San Diego for three days. It's kind of a round table discussion with 45 senior pastors of larger churches. It's facilitated by Larry Osborne (we have one of Larry's books on our resource table and it's very much in the vein of Paul Miller's book). We were having a discussion on parenting and pastor's kids when one of the pastors recommended reading Paul Miller's book on prayer as a book on parenting! Exactly! If you haven't read a book in a while, start with this one. (Although you may also want to get the first Hunger Games book done before the movie comes out in a couple of weeks. :-))

#4- Here's the Feed Event video from last weekend

#5- Here is some of the feedback and comments from the Communication Cards:

  • Thank you for Feed My Starving Children. So meaningful!
  • Henry, thank you for addressing those of us who have experienced extremely ‘sinful’ fathers.  Your words were comforting, healing and encouraging.  Beautiful song (I am yours)! [A good friend asked why I didn't mention my not having a dad in my life (mine left soon after I was born and I never met him or his family). My experience (and studies I've read support it) is that not having a dad in your life is better than having a seriously flawed one, especially if you have some strong, positive male figures in your life. I had those in my family and at church.]
  • I think my prayers are going to change dramatically, which is a good thing. 
  • Love this series!!  Great worship today!  
  • Henry – keep up the great work and everyday life blogs it’s a great ‘pick me up’ and ‘nudge’ for me when the daily grinds have me on a short term path. [Someone is actually reading this? :-)]
  • Looking for any regular members/attenders who live in/near downtown Mpls. for transportation. [I don't think we have many or any coming from that direction and that far. If you're having trouble making it to Five Oaks regularly and decide to look for something closer to home, I've heard GREAT things about Hope Community in downtown Minneapolis and met the pastor this week. It's predominantly young adults, but I think that would be my preference, even at my age. Former Five Oaks members that moved to downtown Minneapolis love First Covenant, which has experienced some great transformations with their new pastor.] 
  • Loudness of Acorn Café staff conversing with each other made it difficult to hear the monitor.  Maybe remind workers that people are trying to listen a few feet away.  I ended up asking them to use a lower volume and it was much better.  [We are devising a plan...... More on that on another day.]
  • Thank you Five Oaks team!!  [You are welcome!]
  • Excellent first response time song!  [I agree! And its message was so perfect coming out of the message. We're doing some new things behind the scenes in designing the services that you may be noticing, but we're geeking out on these changes. I'll talk more about it once we're farther into it.] 

#6- The Nicaragua family missions team should have arrived there yesterday. I'm told the staff gathered around Jerry and prayed for him and the team at our weekly check-in. Pray for their effectiveness and safety.

#7- The Treehouse ministry is gearing up for a "Cross the Line Weekend" on April 7/8.  On this weekend we'll present the gospel message and ask kids where they are at in their faith journey. We also give the parents a head-up, in case they want to be the ones to pray with their kids to receive Christ (if the child is ready). We provide resources to help with that too.

#8- The weekend after "Cross the Line Weekend" the Treehouse will be helping kids take next steps in their spiritual growth by challenging and equipping them to practice spiritual disciplines like daily prayer, Bible reading and Bible memorization. I love that our Children's Ministry is so intentional with our kids. Thank you to all volunteers and staff who make this happen every weekend!

#9- Need prayer?  Did you know you can make an appointment to pray with a prayer team member on March 22 any time between 7 - 8:30 p.m. Schedule an appointment through the office at office@fiveoakschurch.org.

#10- So the weather in San Diego is cooler than in Minnesota...IN MARCH! So weird. We're bragging about it here, but then everyone says, "But you're here in San Diego."

#11- We're launching a new station on this weekend for the new series. All I'm going to tell you is that it's BIG.

#12- Our new series focuses on Luke 11-14. One of the themes that dominates these chapters is choosing the good and narrow path that leads to Christ and to a better life in him (for now and eternity). It made me think of what Andy Stanley calls "the principle of the path": Direction, not intention, determines our destination. The reality is that the quality of your life (your marriage, your career, your parenting, your finances) is determined by the paths you choose. It's a principle built into the fabric of the universe. So we're using his title and promoting his book as an additional resource for growth during the next 11 weeks or so of this series.

#13- The new series logo is inspired by the classic Zelda video game. If you've played it, you know why it fits great with a series on choosing the right path. (Great idea and design, Geoff.) And the Easter graphic was painted by Erinn Schaap. It's beautiful! Check both out here.

God bless you,

Pastor Henry