Monday, June 9, 2014

The Next Series

Hello! It's been awhile (again) since I've written here. Toni and I are at our friends' home in Texas, having come here on Friday for our god-daughter's high school gradutation. We'll be heading home tomorrow.  This won't be all that organized but it will help me to get going on what's next once we return.

Right now I'm thinking and praying about what "direction" the Lord is giving us about themes and messages for Crossroads beginning June 22. This last Sunday (yesterday) Crossroads was blessed with an awesome worship experience and message from Igniter Ministries and our sons, Dan & Jon Thorson. Coming up on June 15 (this coming Sunday) Sherri Mohamed will be here (at Crossroads) to get us ready for our "30 Days of Prayer for the Muslim World." The question is, what's next after that.

I've been in communication with Pastor Per Nilsen today. He has headed up the informal "network" of churches and pastors that I've been part of since the summer or fall of 2011. When we met earlier this year they had suggested that we do series called "Do It Yourself" this summer followed by a series on the OT book of Nehemiah. As I've been praying now I'm thinking that it would be good to proceed at least with the Do It Yourself Series, probably beginning June 22.  (I had thought perhaps we might do one more message on the "Living the Dream" series but none of the other churches in the network are doing so and I don't seem to have inspiration right now to go that way.)

My first reaction to the "Do It Yourself" message series titles was not positive. But here's what the series authors say:
While we all need Jesus and cannot truly “do it yourself,” there are certain practical areas of our faith where we must take some responsibility and ownership.
Our son Dan said something similar this last Sunday as he spoke on the God given unity we have in Jesus and connected that with Jesus' statement: "by this they will know that you are my disciples IF you love one another."  So there is a "doing" that each of us is called to, and our doing or not doing makes a difference.  There is a part of the Christian life that we do ourselves... not by ourselves but our own selves are called to do it.

There's a lot more to be worked out in this series, but that's the gist of it.  The network pastors suggested four different things that we're called to do ourselves: (1) forgive one another, (2) raise our children to know Jesus, (3) live by spiritual "rhythms" (such as the sabbath) and (4) share Jesus with others.

Perhaps others at Crossroads or beyond would like to suggest other things that we're called to "do ourselves" in response to the grace of God.  I'm hoping that others will be called by God to share one or more of these messages in upcoming weeks.  Toni and I will be most likely out of the area on July 6 for family time so perhaps YOU would like to share a message that week?  Pray and let me know!

One thing that I know is how much of a difference it makes in our fellowship when some of us are gone.  Taking time to gather together is a "do it yourself" issue that all of us are called to.  No one can participate for you.  You must "do it yourself."  You are irreplaceable and unique.

God's peace to you all tonight.

artwork from network partner Community of Hope church in Rosemount

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