Monday, October 27, 2008

What does it mean to do life together?

When we say that we do church together and when we hear our church leaders say, we do life together and we connect with people, what does it really mean for you?
When you think of the group of people with whom you do life with, are you really sharing life with them?
we are Christians and the bible tells us to Love one another, right? Do we really love each other? Or at least care for one another?
John 13:34-35
34"A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another."

These days it has just become more obvious that there is a talk in church about the idea that they are actually sharing life but this is almost a lie just because it is not truly the truth. Well, if it is so that people care for each other, how come they don't know each others last name very often and how come they don't know where some of the people who attend church work? How disconnected is it that people truly are that they don't know birthdays and anniversaries? Many church communities desire to be multicultural but they don't know which nationality or ethnic group is the majority of their church and what is their culture? So many times they encounter a disconnection with the church members and life is no longer "shared" in communion.

The Ministries of most churches lack of volunteers, yet the leadership perhaps doesn't evaluate the respect and gratitude level they do express to those volunteers. Volunteers are persons that out of the love for their Lord and obedience, they come forward and make themselves available to God and offer some additional time of their schedule without asking for pay in return of course. Yet many times they are confronted with disrespect and little appreciation from the staff members who don't have the budget to invest in more employees. Unfortunately people get discourage because instead of having people around them to celebrate the "little" efforts from their part, they critisize the volunteer for the little they do and demand more of them.
Wow! Where did that come from? To say a good word for the leadership, many Ministry leaders care for their volunteers and love the input they bring to the church. Many times it is not that they demand more of you but they try to challenge you so that you can grow in your spiritual life with Christ. They are cheerleaders that push you a bit to reach further out your God given potential.
But, indeed there must be a balance between the two extremes, where volunteers are respected and leaders can express their love and gratitude properly. All in a way that both ends feel that they are truly sharing life. Both leaders and volunteers grow on the process of doing ministry together. Isn't that a beautiful thing? Serving as a volunteer, gives you the privilege to have a mentor while you are serving with them but you can also at all times call on them when you most need them. They count on you to serve and you count on them to guide you through the hard times of life.

Now what about church members, are they connected to other church members? Do you know the lady that stands at the door every Sunday? Did you know that she has two children and she recently lost her job? No you don't. Do you make an effort to know if they need prayer? Have you noticed the gentleman at the elder ministry, who is smiling all the time, do you know that his grandfather passed away?
Unless people ask us to pray for them is it that we turn around and act upon request. Most of the times we pretend that everyone around us is happy, including ourselves and unless they say if there is anything wrong we would not notice. Is it because people don't speak up when they hurt or is it that we don't have our radars on alert to identify when a brother or a sister is hurting.
Let me give you something to think about, not very nice thought but think about this. Most of the people who commit suicide are "happy" people. No one around them ever understands what happen or what could have triggered suicide because they were most convinced that the person was happy person.....

Lets express our Love and let our encouragement be sincere to one another. Lets cheer the little efforts and the big accomplishments because they are all for God's glory. Let us not despite each other and lets be aware of each others needs, ask our Lord to give you that discernment for those in need and do something about it.

Romans 12:15 Rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mourn. But lets do this as one body, the Body of Christ Jesus our Lord and Savior. This is the true meaning of doing life together, embrace it and lets live it!
Romans 12:3-5(NIV)
3For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you. 4Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.

Lets serve as He served,
in a humble way and with a zealeous heart at all times...

Monday, October 13, 2008

--------------IN THE DUST IF THE RABBI - THE VERY WORD OF GOD

IN THE DUST OF THE RABBI
For four weeks we have learned what it was like to be called by Jesus and to follow Jesus to be his disciple.
We have learned about the culture of the time after Jesus' resurrection.
We have learned how the first Christians faced their new lives as disciples in the Roman-Greek societies.
Be ready to uncover our last session of this series, " The very words of God".
Are you ready to hear God's word? Are you ready to be in the dust of the feet of Jesus Christ?
Soon we will visit the Holy Land experience in Orlando,
we promise you it won't take us 40 years to get there.
Be ready, be excited, be there!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

-----SOS--Pray for the persecuted Christians

The problem in the area of Orissa:
Voice Of the Martyrs contacts report more than 50 homes belonging to Christians have been reportedly burned to the ground by extremists in the village of Rupagaon, Kandhamal alone. "A paralyzed man was unable to escape his burning house and was killed. Houses have also been ransacked, pelted with stones and vandalized throughout the state. Christian-owned shops have been torched and looted. Many Christians have fled their homes and are seeking refuge in the jungle. Although police have attempted to protect Christians and end the attacks in Orissa, the violence has continued to occur. Militant groups have blocked roads with logs in order to keep the police away. Christian groups continue to beseech government authorities to intervene and end the violence," VOM contacts added. Click here to go to www.persecution.com
For more on these attacks, click here , your discretion is advise.

The voice of the victims:
All our dream centers are under lock down with the kids and staff huddled inside and police outside. The fanatics are circling outside waiting for a chance to kill. Others were not so fortunate. In a nearby Catholic orphanage, the mob allowed the kids to leave and locked up a Priest and a computer teacher in house and burned them to death. Many believers have been killed and hacked into pieces and left on the road.... even women and children. At another orphanage run by another organization, when this began, the Director and his wife jumped on their motorbike and simply fled, leaving all the children and staff behind. Every one of our GNI directors that I have spoken to said: "We stay with our kids.... we live together or die together, but we will never abandon what God has called us to do." More than 5000 Christian families have had their homes burned or destroyed. They have fled into the jungles and are living in great fear waiting for the authorities to bring about peace. But so far, no peace is foreseen. This will continue for another 10 days.... supposedly the 14 day mourning period for the slain Hindu priest. Many more Christians will die and their houses destroyed. Many more churches will be smashed down. The Federal government is trying to restore order and perhaps things will calm down. We ask for your prayers. Only the Hand of God can calm this storm. None of us know the meaning of persecution. But now our kids and staff know what that means.

Their request to you:
We must get the word out and increase our prayer base for this is spiritual warfare at its most basic meaning. We are literally fighting the devil in order to live for His Kingdom. The next 10 days are crucial. We pray for peace and calm to pervade across Orissa. Thank you for taking the time to read this. Please pass it on and help us to get as many people to partner with us on this cutting edge effort to fulfill His mandate: Go and make disciples of all nations.... Prayer works!
Blessings, Chip & Sandy Wanner
Col 2:2 MBI -
My purpose is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ,
...............................................................................................................................................................

Hey guys,
We encourage you to include them in your daily prayers, these brothers and sisters in Christ are going through a horrible time. May God protect them and let us lift them in our prayers.

Ephesians 6:18
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.
To obtain the entire letter of Chip & Sandy, send us an email with the subject: Prayer request for Orissa.
Blessings,
Julieta-Francisco

Click the link to see our Doral Singles Ministry 2007 blog-year