Jesus loves me this I know. Debra Wants me this I know. My kids appreciate me this I know. My church encourages me this I know. My Life Group cares for me this I know. Everything else I know, I will share with you.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

You get what you Pray for

I am so excited for this next Sunday.

So far this week.......

1 amazing young lady (Brittney) is getting Baptized.
1 great man (John) is joining our church.
1 new four week Series (Interrupted) is beginning.
1 family friend (Debra's) is moving to Astoria and is going to be visiting our church.
1 Awesome lady (Chrystal) who should be out of the Hospital today (Pray for her) is hopefully going to be back worshipping with us.
1 Tremendous woman (April) started discipling another new Christian during her own discipleship.
1 Stupendous young woman (No Name Yet) started a journey of personal discovery.
1 Very Excited young woman (Jennifer) began discipleship.
1 newLife Lake should be drained forever.

So here's my question that I need a comment from each of you on.

What's the One thing that you are praying that God will do by Sunday?

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Five Ways to make your Home Group work and Pray for Chrystal

With home groups becoming a larger part of our ministry it is important to make sure that they are the best they can be. Here are a few ideas to encourage that.

1. Witness it.
I know its uncomfortable. I know you would rather stay home. But that's just your flesh talking. Its spiritual to develop close relationships with people. The Trinity is as close a relationship you can get. Realness with each other is a sign of Righteousness with the Father.

2. Work it.
A home group is more than a once in a month meeting. Its where relationships are built that allow us to minister to each other throughout the month. Pray for one another, encourage one another, disciple one another, and serve one another as you get to know one another.

3. Wait for it.
Home groups don't just happen. They take time to develop, to open up, to build. Don't get frustrated because its not what you thought. Put some Work in it (see above) and see what God does with it.

4. Watch out for it.
Trust me, wolves are out there and they love home groups. They love to get you alone, give their advice, draw you to them. Not out of love, but out of a desire for you to follow them. While our leaders are watching over you, they can't see everything. Help them by encouraging healthy relationships within the group.

5. Want it.
The success of any home group depends upon how bad the people involved really want to build relationships with each other. If you want to experience biblical community at its best then it will be found within your home group. (See Acts 2:42-47)

We started having home groups as a way to encourage deeper relationships within the body of newLife. This is especially important as the church grows as fewer people know fewer people.

We also noticed that through these home groups other things occurred naturally. Discipleship happened more naturally through home groups, as did hospital visits, and service. In other words, more got done better with less effort and more involvement and we are not even close to being fully developed yet.

The future of our home groups is exciting. Lives will be changed. Get Involved.

P.S. Chrystal Mackelroy (spelled wrong) is still in the hospital but she has been moved to St.Vincent in Portland. Please keep her in your prayers. Even in her pain she has been sharing her love of Christ and encouraging people to come to church! Pray that God's grace would be sufficient, that her condition would be healed, and her heart would feel Loved.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A Letter from Pastor A to newlife Church

God is Amazing.
Absolutely Amazing.

Sunday Morning God blessed us in several ways.

1. Tosha came to worship with us!!!!!
Just a few weeks ago she was so close to death, so scared of what her future held, yet, God Healed her broken body and she came to worship with us. It was incredible to see her. To God be the Glory.

2. Nate and Kim joined our Church!!!
Its funny but God chose people to be windows into the faith. Nate and Kim have been that window for her parents Rick and Chris as well as Brother in law and sister Chris and Alexis. They saw the difference in Kim when she started attending our church and had to check it out. The rest is His Story! They currently live in Jewel and travel one hour just to come to be with us. AMAZING people!

3. Alexis finally got to join our church!!!
Alexis gave a life changing testimony on Thursday night that if you get a chance listen to on celebration or just ask her. She's an amazing young lady who has already touched our hearts in so many ways.

4. Joe's Big Blessing!!!
Joe Jasper has been a faithful member of this church for years as well as a faithful testimony of Christ through his work place. A few months ago, one of his coworkers Kia trusted Christ as his savior through the testimony of Joe. And that was awesome. Then Kia and his wife took the step of Baptism and Joined the church. Then, Kia's son and daughter trusted Christ as their savior because of the testimony of Kia. And then this Sunday, Forrest, Kia's Son was Baptized. Joe, your faith and faithfulness is being blessed, Thank you!!

5. Thursdays Life Stories made a major difference.
You can always tell when a service is moving when the next day you could spend hours cleaning up the Kleenex off of the auditorium floor.
People were touched by you, because you have been touched by Jesus. Awesome.

6. New Faces as well.
It was great to see Randy and Jennifer singing with us as well as Brittney's special. It was exciting to see Rick working the sound booth, as well as Kia taking offerings. People getting involved in the lives of people is a healthy Christianity and leads to a growing people.

We are leading up to an amazing year. Lets make sure that Jesus is the theme and Souls are the focus. Anything else is selfish.!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Transformers, More than meets the Eye!!!!

In case you missed it last night, what you heard was the mission of God being carried out. Stories of people who have been brought into relationship to Christ and who are maturing in their faith.

This is critical to our mission of advancing the gospel.

For those of you who shared, Thank you.
For those of you who didn't, come talk to me and I would love to give you the opportunity to do so.
For those of you whose love and devotion brought them to Christ, thank you thank you thank you.

I can't wait for Sunday!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

When the Going Gets Tough, The Tough Seek Prayer Help

I wanted to say that the tough whine, but that's my flesh talking.

This Sunday is going to be a hard one. Not the message, but the work.

This Sunday, Anthony will be out of town and as is Dave Hillard, so that means that I get to lead Worship as well as Preach. Now Normally this isn't too tough, except we have two services to work through, and I am getting old, and fat. Sorry fatter.

Pray for me

Also this Sunday we should have a few baptisms as well as several people join the church. Why is this tough? Because Satan is doing everything He can to keep that from happening.

Pray for them.

And this Sunday is the end of our Revolution Series and I am struggling with where to go from there. Our Church is changing so rapidly that its hard to know where to go next. I would love some suggestions as to what we need as a body to hear. One such suggestion was to continue with Hope. What do you think? What do we need?

Pray for us.

And Sunday is always difficult for people who do not know Christ. There is always an excuse that keeps them from seeking the answers to the questions God has placed upon  their hearts.

Pray for them.

I guess the summery for Sunday is Please pray cause the going is getting tough, and we need God's help to do God's work.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Happy Angels make Happy Christians

To say our church is different than it was, would be an understatement.
Though our new members may not understand it, we are different than we were.

What changed? The way we view and do ministry. Loving God and Loving others. While our doctrine is the same, our devotion to the way we reach people is different.

But not everyone is happy with change.
Today, just as in Luke chapter 7, there are people, people like John the Baptist, who are wondering if we are Authentic. John put his life into the work of God and was worried that Jesus wasn't the real deal. He was worried that all that He had fought for would be lost if Jesus wasn't who He said He was.

and so to settle Johns heart, Jesus then told Johns disciples this.......

Luke 7:22 (KJV) Then Jesus answering said unto them, Go your way, and tell John what things ye have seen and heard; how that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, to the poor the gospel is preached.
Jesus wanted John to know what made His ministry Authentic.
The Blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and to the poor, they have heard the gospel.

Since November of last year we have seen just that.
16 people have trusted Christ as their Savior.
15 people have shared their faith through Baptism.
19 people have joined the church.

5 people are waiting to be Baptised.
11 people are preparing to join the church.

Some were blind to the truth of Jesus, Some were crippled by life, some were deaf until God opened their ears, all were dead to Christ until they were born again, some were rejected (poor) of men but accepted by Christ and His church.

So if people are wondering if we are authentic, just tell them what God is doing.
and according to Jesus in Luke 7:23, they ought to rejoice with us instead of being offended by us.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

An unforced Letter from Pastor A

Hey Lifers, Sunday was an awesome day.
Let me tell you what happened.

1. Two teens trusted Christ as their Savior last week. By Choice. Without pressure.

2. Another young couple wants to join the church. By Choice. Without pressure.

3. An amazing young woman trusted Christ as her savior Sunday after Church. By Choice. Without pressure.

4. Two other ladies came to me on Sunday and asked about Joining the Church. By Choice. Without pressure.

5. People gave to the offering for Easter at the Liberty. By Choice. Without Pressure.

6. An Awesome Lady (Suzy J) realized her God given calling to wounded children and adults.

People are hearing the voice of God, following the leading of His Spirit, and trusting Christ as their Savior.

Whats the difference? Love.
They are loved, accepted, wanted, appreciated, served, by you.
I've never been so proud (good thing) of any church I have ever been involved with.

Lifers are loving God (I hear it in your worship)
Lifers are loving others (I see it in your sacrifice)
Lifers are loving Christianity (I see it on your faces)

Thank you for choosing to serve the people of our church.
Thank you for your commitment to this body.
Thank you for your Christ like Spirit towards those who are looking for truth, love, and hope.

Thank you for being you in Christ, by Choice, without Pressure.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Only the Presense of God will Save these people

I wonder if its natural for us to feel sympathy without being seriously affected.

This is Syunsuke Doi, left, who was caught on camera this past Monday falling apart right after finding the bodies of his wife and two children at a makeshift morgue built after last week’s earthquake and tsunami in Higashimatsushima.

I could not imagine this and so I can feel sorry for him, yet insulate myself by being glad its him and not me.

And this makes me wonder, how does God feel right now about what is going on in Japan?

Does he feel sympathy and then go on with his day? Or does this wreck Him?

What pain must the Holy Spirit feel as he tries to draw men and women and children to the truth of Jesus Christ.

and what hurt Jesus must feel as thousands of people, in one moment, entered into hell.

Why is this important? Because if it wrecks God, it ought to wreck us.
If the Savior of God, and the Spirit of God, and God Himself are greatly affected by this, why aren't we?

Is it because our comfort is not affected?
Is it because our hearts are jaded? (I was raised to despise the Japanese people because of WWII)

This morning, I feel a little hypocritical at my lack of action.
Japan has always been a closed nation to Jesus, this I promise will open it up.

Would you join me for the next three days and pray for the people of Japan and those brave missionaries who will suffer for the sake of the souls of men?

I truly believe that the presence of God is their greatest need. Lets Pray

Hebrews 12:28 (KJV)  Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved (Shaken), let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Getting Old Sucks

I am in a battle today.
My body though only 47 is fighting against itself.
I am sitting at my desk trying to find that perfect balance.

My eyes are getting bad so I am wearing Glasses to read and work.
To see I have to almost sit on the computer screen to read clearly, even with glasses. This would not be a problem if my belly was not pushing my keyboard away from my hands. And when I find that perfect balance I can only hold it for so long before my back hurts and I have to move.
So picture my head and neck leaning in to read, my hands reaching out to type and my back against the chair. Can you say, Uncomfortable?

Following Jesus for an older Christian can be the same.
As a new Christian it was so easy as everything was so new and exciting.
We were willing to give up everything just to know Him more.
There was no uncomfortable position as our newly freed lives made everything feel so good.

But then we matured. Our faith got a little stretched out and it was harder to see what God was doing. Our eyes have been blurred by our fears.

Our lives got a little fuller and it increased our size dramatically making it harder to reach out to meet the needs of others. We struggle to sacrifice like we did when we were young in the faith.

And we can't carry as much as we once did. We want comfort, our backs just can't support others problems and needs. We have needs too you know.

and the worst part about getting old is, we care less for those we can help the most.
Our pains and problems become more important to us and so we do less.

We really start believing that the cost of Christianity is too high for us, let the younger ones sacrifice, let the younger ones serve.

and the worst part about it is, at a time when we ought to be doing the most for the kingdom of God, we do the least.

For that we ought to be sorry and repent.
God has given us so much for so many but we do so little for so few.
Getting old Sucks, but getting old and selfish sucks even more.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Water Water Everywhere, but does anyone really Care?

While I am not trying to minimize the Sunami danger, I wonder...........

If the tribulation period was beginning on Monday, and the only evacuation point was Christ, Would you be as freaked out by that alarm?
Would you be as concerned for your loved ones?
Wouldn't you do whatever you could to encourage them to hear the word of God?

Want to see something really scary?
2 Peter 3:3-6 (KJV)
3 Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts,
4 And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation.
5 For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water:
6 Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished:

There is no doubt that the end is near, who do you need to warn?

Thursday, March 10, 2011

If God is NOT the author of Confusion than it must be YOU

To say that I am confused would be an understatement. But this is just one of the many reasons we trust God and not ourselves.

Let me Explain several reasons why I am confused this morning.

#1 God has placed on my heart the most amazing message for this Sunday. I know it will be life changing because it changed mine.
But so few of you will invite anyone to church to hear it and a select few, won't even attend yourselves.

#2 For three years I have preached two things. Love God and Love others. and if you love God you will love what God loves. Others. Especially those hurting, helpless, and hopeless.
Then why do I hear that someone, Anyone, in this church would judge another person for their faults, failures, and foolishness and refuse to have fellowship with them, when we have been forgiven of so much?

#3 The psalm is clear, blessed is the man who walks not in the COUNCIL of the UNGODLY, Stands in the WAY of SINNERS, and Sits in the SEAT of the SCORNFUL.
Then Why oh Why would anyone take council, follow the ways, and live the life of the ungodly over someone who is actively pursuing God?

#4 Definition of Gossip. If the conversation two people is having, is about anyone other than yourselves, and includes people who are not with you, its gossip. If you share what you've heard about someone with anyone other than the person you've heard it about, its gossip.
YOU KNOW THAT and IT IS SIN. Read Proverbs 6:16-19
Why is it happening?

What I fight more than anything is confusion.
Confusion with the Scriptures, about the Church, about our Savior.
Christians ought not add to it.
Its this reason I left the church at 13 and didn't return until I was almost 30.

I believe that the church is the HOPE of the world.
I believe that the church is the most beautiful body on the earth.
and because of that belief, I have given my life for her, His Bride.
Stop confusing people about her.
Stop and repent.
If you are causing confusion, your only serving Satan.
Stop or God will stop you.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Only a Crazy Person would Enjoy Prison

Early in my pastoral ministry I received a phone call from a young lady who had just been beaten up by her husband. On the phone her voice sounded so pained and her heart as broken as her body. The police were called, he was taken to jail, and so I went to see what else I could do. After a week of helping her get established in a safer environment, He was released and allowed to come home. And she let him.

This was not the first time he had done this, but sadly enough, it was not hers either.
Though she was scared to death all the time, she felt strangely safer with him there.
After speaking to police officers I learned that this was normal behavior for abuse victims. At first I thought they were wrong but I have since learned they were right.
There is something strange about people who live out of control lives that lead them to feel safer in out of control situations. Its a form of mental bondage.

I am seeing this in the spiritual realm within our church. Many of you have made amazing Spiritual decisions. You've trusted Christ as your Savior, you've gotten baptized and joined the church even starting to minister to others in service. But the bondage of your past is beginning to grab a hold of you and pull you back. Your in Spiritual Bondage.

God wants so desperately to free you, yet your discomfort in freedom is drawing you back into bondage.

This next Sunday will be the biggest day of your life.
You will either be free from the pain of your past, or be pulled right back into living with it again.

Listen to the promise of Jesus and get ready for an amazing Sunday

John 8:36 (KJV)  If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


If God is God, and we are empowered with His Spirit....
     Why are Christians so weak emotionally?
     Why are Christians so miserable personally?
     Why are Christians so poor spiritually?

Wouldn't you agree that most Christians are over educated in the bible yet underachieving in living it?
In no way am I saying that we should not know the word of God, on the contrary, that knowledge ought to cause us to have a greater courage to live it.

Then why do we settle for a lesser power?

I wonder.......what would happen if we had no other choice but to rely on the power of God to live our lives.
I different Christianity would be, if God's people were truly empowered by the Spirit of God and encouraged in the word of God?

Would we be encumbered by religion? Or would we throw it off as an unnecessary burden?
Would we be weighted down by the busyness of life or use the busyness for life?

I we have to wait till heaven to truly experience all that God has for us or as my prayer is this morning, "Lord, can we experience you today in your fullness?"

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

"Would He Just SHUT UP!"

She said to my wife as she just had to share or she was going to burst!
Funny isn't it, that most of Christianity does not feel that way?

So that is what I am going to do.
I am going to JUST SHUT UP and ask that you share what you felt after Sundays Service.

and just so you know, I am careful about handing anyone a microphone, but sometimes you have to trust your wife!

Comment away...................