When the New Year is filled with the Old Year’s Petitions

We’ve kicked off the New Year and for some of us the newness is still clean and bright. For some of us, the New Year came with last year’s “laundry” or maybe you’ve been carrying around some things you wish would have gone out with the old year for the past decade or so. If that is the case for you this morning, hopefully this woman’s story from Scripture will be an encouragement to you:

Jacob Sojourned in Canaan - Audio/Video

Jacob was a sojourner in the land of Canaan while his brother Esau moved away and founded his own country, Edom. Esau took a secular route in his life while Jacob was on a spiritual journey his brother could know nothing about. Christians are called to be sojourners, pilgrims in our times just like Jacob was in his. How can you know if you are a sojourner with Christ?

Watch below or listen here...

Crossroads and New Beginnings

Happy New Year! Blessings to you and yours as you step into this fresh New Year with all of God's new mercies!

The New Year, Crawling, and the Rest of Us

Our little six month old is in the desperate and determined process of learning to crawl. He has been for some time now. About two months ago he would look at something he wanted and do this wild, frenetic Pilates type air swimming. Now that he’s done all that great core work, he’s stronger and can easily get up on all fours, do a full plank, crawl in circles and backwards, but he has yet to master the whole going forward thing. Which is incredibly frustrating to him. And I totally get it. 

As the New Year rolls around and the blogosphere is filled with posts about achieving your goals it’s easy to survey your life and feel like you are just crawling around in circles or ooching backwards further and further. 

Christmas Preparations

The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. And He found in the temple those who were selling oxen and sheep and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables. And He made a scourge of cords, and drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and the oxen; and He poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables; and to those who were selling the doves He said, "Take these things away; stop making My Father's house a place of business." His disciples remembered that it was written, "ZEAL FOR YOUR HOUSE WILL CONSUME ME." John 2:13-18 NAS 

It might seem like an odd passage to highlight during the Christmas season, but as we mine for gems from this section of Scripture, I think there is some treasure here for us.

The Key to Handling Family Holiday Drama

from the Motls and crosswalk.com
The calendar is closing in on the holidays and in our house, with this time of year, comes the writing of the annual family Christmas letter.  Most years this task is a joy as I share God's handiwork in our lives with extended family and friends.  But some years... well, some years I think that if I saw me sharing what life has been like on Oprah or one of those afternoon TV shows I'm not sure I would even believe me! 

Sometimes life packs such a wallop of dramatic surprises that words don't even begin to describe it -- and truth be told, maybe words shouldn't even try!  I cannot deny God's hand of blessing over our lives the past year, nor can I deny the reality that He has and is bringing us through some head-spinning whirlwinds. 
I wonder what your Christmas letter looks like this year -- was it an easy year or a hang-on-for-dear-life kind of year?  If you had a roller coaster kind of year, take heart you are not alone! 

Christmas: The How and Why - Audio/Video

Join Pastor Eric for a Christmas message. Watch below...

Wishing for the "Perfect" Christmas

From the Motls & Crosswalk.com
It's the most wonderful time of the year ... well, maybe, but one thing for certain is that this is the most busy time of the year!  And for us gals, it can be pull-your-hair-out stressful! 

I have often wondered how in the world we came to the conclusion that it was a good idea to bake, make gifts, wrap gifts, make little costumes for the Christmas play at church, decorate our homes, have lots of people over and somehow keep the house clean enough for all those activities.  I mean wouldn't one of those extravaganzas be enough? 

Seeing God - Audio/Video Message

Is it possible to see God? Jesus said it was. However, we cannot see Him with the eyes of our heads; and we cannot see Him on our own terms. A pure heart is needed. How do we obtain a pure heart and a full life? This sermon may help some to answer these questions. Listen here or watch below...

Having a Merry Christmas in Your Marriage

From the Motls & Crosswalk.com 
It’s wild how the holidays can bring out such intense sides to our personality. Right after we gather around a table with family and friends to thank God for His blessings in our life, we gather to malls and store aisles to wrestle one-another like gladiators for deals. Our displays make the news and from one breath to the next we move from gratitude to greed. The hustle and bustle continues for another six weeks, stretching over Christmas and finally to New Year's. Yup. It’s a crazy time of year where, as a culture, we sacrifice to bless another one minute and indulge in almost every imaginable way the next.

In our marriages, the rush, the expectations, the schedule and the cookie induced sugar buzz can really make for some stressful—potentially explosive—situations.