091816 | Building Blocks | Part Two | Marriage: One Flesh

September 20, 2016
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Marriage is more than an institution it is all about a relationship that is divine.  God set this whole thing up.  It is not a man-made idea.  God made Adam and Eve for each other and when they are walking in God they are living and thriving as one flesh with each other as well as with God.  The action is that we are one flesh  and we work together as one. 

After love is established there are some things that we must understand  and have the correct attitude toward each other and toward marriage.  Men need respect women need safety and protection.  As we are walking and living in God we are able to give each other what we need.  The attitude is that we live for each others success.

God is a God of order.  There is an alignment in marriage.  Because marriage is the foundation of all other relationships and society it is absolutely necessary for our marriages to be in alignment.  When we live out of alignment everybody is affected.  That is why we have so many issues and problems in our societies around the world because our marriages are out of alignment.  We all have positions and responsibilities that come along with that position.

Has the Father, Son and Spirit are one so we as husband and wife are to be one, one flesh!

091116 | Building Blocks | Building Strong Healthy Families | Part One | The Transcendence of Marriage

September 12, 2016
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The family is the foundation to all societies in our world and marriage is the foundation of families.  If we have successful families it is because we have successful marriages.  What does a successful marriage look like?  It is never having conflict? Never having problems?  Always being kind and gentle to one another?  Yes and no!!  Reality tells us that because we are human we are going to have difficulties but if we truly understand that marriage is about a covenant that God established and not a man made idea or institution we will give it the proper place of value in our society. 

In part one of this 5 part series we deal with the transcendence of marriage.  Apart from our relationship with God there is no other relationship greater.  Marriage is highly esteemed in God’s eyes and so it must be in ours.  We have allowed the world around us to dictate to us the value or non-value of marriage.  It, marriage, has been reduced to nothing more than a boyfriend, girlfriend, junior high romance relationship.  You jump in and you jump out.  God doesn’t look at it that way. 

If we want strong healthy families we are going to have to have strong healthy marriages.  Building a strong marriage is one of the first building blocks we must work on.

090416 | What is a Christian? | Allen Hickman

September 6, 2016
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Since the beginning of the Christian faith the rest of the world has called the followers of Jesus “Christians”.  After two-thousand plus years though some of the meaning has gotten lost.  So what does it mean to be a “Christian”?  Is it going to church on a regular basis?  Is it doing what Jesus did?  To act like Him, talk like Him?  Is it keeping all the rules and laws that the Bible has in it?

NO, to all the above.  To be a Christian is not about doing but about being.  Not everyone is a child of God, only those who have been born into His family.  We are Christians because we have been “born again.”  We now have the very blood of God flowing through our veins.  We act like Jesus because it is our nature, not because we choose to.  If it is all about our choices then our hope still rest with us and not with God.  But if we have His blood flowing through us, then His nature is our nature.  We are joint heirs with Jesus.  We are a brothers and sisters to the Son.

We have a personal relationship with our Father God.  He has done all that was needed to give us the right and privilege to be call His sons and daughters.  Being a Christian is more than doing what your culture says.  Being a Christian is about being a son or daughter.

082816 | How to be a Titus | Allen Hickman

August 30, 2016
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We all need each other.  Whether we believe it or not or whether we distance ourself from others in hopes that they will leave us alone, the truth still remains, we need each other.  Have you ever be going through a difficult time in your life; divorce, death of a loved one, job relocation, a prodigal child, etc... and someone gave you an encouraging word or they just showed up and were there?  If you have, then that person was a Titus.  Titus in the Bible was one of the many young men that the apostle Paul mentored.  When Paul was going through a difficult time in his life Titus was there to encourage and lift him up.  Paul was eternal grateful for that.

We are all in need of others.  Even those of us that think we are just fine on our own.  God designed us to for each other.  He said “its not good for man to be alone.”  Yes, He was talking about creating Eve but He was also talking about relating to others as well.  We were never meant to be alone.  That is what lifegroups are all about.  Connecting with others and growing in our relationship with God together.

Pastor Allen share several principles about relationships and what it take to be a “Titus”, in this weeks message.  We pray that the mercy, love, joy and wisdom of God rest on you as you watch and/or listen to this weeks message on encouraging and being there for one another.

082116 | Why So Downcast? | Allen Hickman

August 23, 2016
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Life can get a little hectic and overwhelming at times and can be taxing on the soul.  We can get a little downcast and depressed when things don’t seem to go the way we thought they would or we make bad decisions that have detrimental outcomes.  We as followers of Jesus Christ have a hope that the rest of the world doesn’t have.  This is a hope that give us a joy that is unspeakable, a love that is unimaginable, and peace that is incomprehensible.  That will only come as we put our hope in God and not the current affairs of this world.

You may ask, “how did I get to this place of being so downcast?”  There are a few things that if not dealt with will drive us to a place of being downcast and depressed.  First make sure you pay attention to the “rest” that you get.  When you are tired physically you are more susceptible to the attacks of the enemy.  Second you have to allow God’s love to cast out the fears you have within.  When you don’t you start to believe the lies of the enemy and you take up offenses.  Lastly don’t allow the conflict in your life to steal your peace no matter whether they are within your control or not.  

God is near to those who are downcast and He wants to lift them up.  Why so downcast? Put your hope in God.  He and He alone can bring you the joy, peace, and love that can change the world.  

081416 | The Walking Dead | Todd Goodwin

August 17, 2016
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Jesus came that we might have life and not just mere existence but an abundant, adventurous and exciting life.  We, as Christians were not called to the mundane, boring, cold, and stiff life.  That's what the walking dead is all about, mindless and imbecilic lives. 

We will become the walking dead if we don't do a few things.  First we must check our vital signs or a least have the people around us check them for us.  That's why small groups are so important.  It's hard to see pride in the mirror. 

Second we must pay attention to the details of our life.  Nobody ever dreams of getting divorced or becoming an addict but because they did pay attention the details of their life the enemy crept in and slowly and intentionally destroyed them from within. 

And lastly if we are to not become the walking dead we are going to have to live our life in rows and not circles meaning its not about Sunday morning attendance but the small groups and connections of our lives that will keep us safe from becoming the walking dead.

The walking dead always consume and never brings life to others but the followers of Jesus alway bring life because life flows to and through them.

080716 | It’s Time To Activate | Allen Hickman

August 11, 2016
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We were never meant to just blend in as followers of Jesus Christ.  We were meant to have an impact on the world in which we live.  The early church affected and infected the culture in which it lived and made a difference in the world.  People didn’t just see the signs and wonders in the church but the love, joy, and peace that came as a result of following Jesus.

However, the state of the Church is America as a whole is that she is a sleeping giant.   Yes, there are some “pockets” of life giving churches but as a general rule the church in America has lulled itself to sleep.  

Its time we are once again activated.  Not activated to busyness but to the call God has placed on His Son’s bride, the Church.  We are to constantly affect positive change in our world and in so doing we bring glory and honor to Jesus.

In order to do all that we are going to have to do a few things first.  We must change our way of thinking.  Realize that we have been given something the world around us desperately needs.   We have been given gifts and talents by the Holy Spirit that are to be used to change our world.  When the Church does these and more we become the bride God intended and our world, no matter where you live, is changed for the better.  It’s time to activate!  

073116 What Makes Us Blessed? His Presence | Allen Hickman

August 1, 2016
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What does it mean to be blessed?  Ask any Christian and you’ll get a different answer from everyone.  However, in America we have a tendency to define much of what the Bible says through the lens of an America ideology and popular culture.  To be blessed in America equates to money or possessions.  If that is true what about the guy living in India’s slums who is a disciple of Jesus?  Is he not as blessed as were are?   What make us blessed is not money or possessions but God’s presences.  It is not being in a worship service, though God’s presence can be there.  It is not riding down the road listening to Christian radio, though that is a good thing to do.  It’s about living in such a way that we are constantly walking and “abiding” in Him 24/7.    When that happens we live a life of love, we have a joy that is not only unspeakable but unfathomable and unexplainable.  A joy that the world envies.  We don’t have to live with fear controlling our lives and lastly we live a life that is marked with supernatural activity.   Answered prayer will not be a surprise to us but an expected result.  Healing will not be something that God uses someone else to do but you will be a yielded and open vessel which God uses to display His power.

Pastor Allen Hickman ministers these points and more as he discusses what being blessed truly means and how we are to live as blessed people and children of God.

072416 | Eternal Purpose | Brent Wale

July 26, 2016
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Life can have a funny affect on us.  Life can change our perspective.  It can change it by what we go through and what we experience.  However, we as followers of Jesus Christ should have an eternal perspective that comes from God.  It is so true, that God’s ways are above our ways, His thoughts greater than our own.  If we have a perspective on life that comes from the best this world has to offer we will walk in depression, hopelessness, fear, selfishness, et cetera.  But if we see life through the eyes of God He brings, hope, joy, peace, love unselfish living, and so much more.  

If we are going to have an eternal perspective we will have to understand a few things.  First we must not believe the legitimacy lies.  Meaning, we can believe what we do makes us legitimate in God’s eyes.  Second we can get wrapped up in the chase trap, chasing the things of this world that only end in hopelessness and yearning.    And lastly remember that this world or “Neverland” will make you forget, forget about the goodness of God.  If we look at life the way the rest of the world does we will forget about God’s love and mercy.

Youth Pastor Brent Wales shares about how we are to keep an eternal perspective as we understand and fulfill our eternal purpose in God.

071716 | Seasons of Change | Murphy Matheny

July 18, 2016
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God is a big God.  He will do above and beyond what we could ever ask or think.  God does not do the same thing the same way every time.  He is a big God and we cannot begin to fathom what He can do but are willing to try?  God does things in seasons.  He moves for a certain time in certain way and then He will change.  We are in a season of change.  God is wanting to do a new thing in His Church.  He wants to change the Church from the inside out.  In order to do that we are going to have understand a few things. 

First we are going to have to not allow our past to dictate our future.  Just because God did it a certain way years ago doesn’t mean He wants to do it that way now.  He wants to do a new thing, something fresh.  Second, we see and embrace the new thing that God wants and is doing.  Lastly we as the Church must live in an state of anticipation. an anticipation of greater things.

Long time friend and guest speaker Murphy Matheny shares a word from God about the seasons of change that God want to bring and how we as the Church must learn how to navigate it.