Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Retreating Forward

A friend told me about his church's leadership retreat. For 2 days, church leaders pulled away for a time of prayer, planning, and worship. He told me, "This retreat is really going to help us move forward as a church." The notion of retreating in order to move forward may sound funny, but often you have to pull back and regroup before you can make meaningful forward progress.

Jesus practiced "retreating forward" quite frequently, spending time alone in prayer with the Father. Matthew 14:23 tells us that "when He had sent the multitudes away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. Now when evening came, He was alone there."

In this fast-paced, get-ahead world, it's easy to wear ourselves down--pressing ahead and moving forward at all costs. But in order to be truly effective as Christians, we need to retreat into God's presence in order to find the resources to move forward in our service for Him.

Oil spill in gulf stopped
Answered prayers for little girl who drowned

Prayer Requests:
Teachers/Administrators/Students - back to school

Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Answer to Arguments

Foolish people are always fighting, but avoiding quarrels will bring you honor. -- Proverbs 20:3

"Bear with each other, and forgive each other. If someone does wrong to you, forgive that person because the Lord forgave you." (Colossians 3:13)

Unity doesn't begin in examining others but in examining self. Unity begins not in demanding that others change, but in admitting that we aren't so perfect ourselves...

The answer to arguments? Acceptance. The first step to unity? Acceptance. Not agreement, acceptance. Not unanimity, acceptance. Not negotiation, arbitration, or elaboration. Those might come later but only after the first step, acceptance. ~ from In The Grip Of Grace by Max Lucado

Remember that Christ loved us while we were yet sinners. How can we who are sinners saved by grace offer anything less than love to those with whom we disagree?

Pastors calling and leading people to pray

Prayer Concerns:
Reaching the lost
Unity in the body of Christ