One More Thing

Hi Five Oakers, The weekend's coming and there are a few things I want to share with you.


The Weekend

This weekend we'll be looking at three of the most important verses in Galatians. Actually, they're among the most important in the New Testament.

For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery. (Galatians 5:1)

For through the Spirit, by faith, we ourselves eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith working through love. (Galatians 5:5-6)

This is about freedom and faith--what they really are and the difference they make. You will not want to miss it.

Last Weekend

Here are the comments and questions from last weekend's Communication Cards:

  • Galatians 4:27 I do not understand this verse.  Too bad for me that Tim did expound on this.  I’ll try to research it this week. [I apologized to Tim for leaving him with that passage. Really tough one. Didn't do it on purpose, though.]
  • It was great to see the VBS kids. [I'm so bummed that I missed VBS week because I was in Cuba. Last year I missed it because our oldest got married. I hope I can make it next year. LOVE to see the kids and their excitement when they gather at the end of each day. You can't imagine the electricity until you're there.]
  • SO cool that the VBS kids got to sing and share what they learned during the week!  Loved it!! [I heard great things about that and I hope we get to do it again.]
  • Tim’s message and the worship band rocked!  Thank you.
  • Praise to You, all the children who were impacted in VBS this week! [Incredible. 31 first-time decisions. Way to go VBS team. And, of course, way to go God!]
  • Pastor Henry, have any recommendations for churches in Aurora, IL?  Please email me with suggestions. [Done]
  • Thanks for the concise, clear explanation of a difficult to understand passage.  Many people assume they are in to eternity because we live in a “Christian” nation.
  • Loved having the VBS songs with kids in the service!  Thanks!
  • Band sounded great.  Great drumming!

One More Thing

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed... (Romans 12:2)

Most people don't like change. Even those of us who do like it when we are the ones steering change. Otherwise, we don't like it either.

Last week I was in a country where very little has changed in 55 years. One of our members who has been there told me I'm lucky to go back before change happens. It likely will change before long. But right now I was able to walk the streets my mom walked on and the buildings--almost every single one--were the same ones she knew from her childhood. Very little was new. It was a unique experience. I suppose I was lucky in a way.

It's nearly identical to how it was in the mid-1950's except in one thing: it's falling apart. It's incredible to walk a stretch of the boardwalk along the ocean, looking at incredible, ornate colonial architecture--buildings older than the oldest in the U.S.--and not find one place I would like to sit and have coffee, have a meal or stay a night. Not one. And it was hard to find a good meal representing the local cuisine--one of my favorite cuisines and what I grew up with.

Don't misunderstand me. The people were incredible, highly educated (about a 99% literacy rate in the entire country, as I understand it), their basic medical needs provided for, and the church is alive and well. But there is very little change. 

I saw first-hand, on a grand scale, what happens when things don't change: they decay. And I can see it in my own life when I'm not growing in the gospel--when I'm stuck. You see it in churches when things stay the same.

Sure, not all change is for the good. But the alternative to bad change isn't to stay the same.

Are resisting change around you or in your life--change that comes through growth? Think of the alternative.