Archives For church vancouver

THANK YOU to everyone who worked so hard to make this weekend happen!  It was a mad dash to the finish, but Hazel Dell was up and running in their new facility!  It was smooth as butter all morning with very minimal adjustments here and there.  It was almost like we had been there for years…

Meanwhile at Battle Ground, both the hearing church and the deaf church had a great service to start the year.  We are so excited for what is in store for us in 2014!  We plan to take some of the creative design elements that we implemented into Hazel Dell and update BG next.  Can’t wait!

We have been seeing lots of new guests walk through our doors at all of our campuses, so make sure you meet someone you don’t know every weekend.  It’s the magic of North Creek that we have people who really care when families walk through the door on a Sunday.  We appreciate your hearts!

Our youth ministry had a wonderful start to their new home in Hazel Dell on Thursday, too.  They were just shy of 100 people in the building and it was awesome to see a packed house!  We love our teenagers!  If you are looking for a way to serve in that arena, email Kris at kris@coffeechurch.com.  She needs everything from small group leaders to people who will come and watch the doors on a Thursday.  Grab a book, grab a chair, and serve our teenagers!

Also, if you are interested in running media, we could use a few more people at both campuses in that ministry.  You can sign up to volunteer at www.coffeechurch.com.

My highlight story is that my daughter got to give a Bible to one of her friends this weekend.  The Word of God is HOPE, LIFE, and WISDOM!  The gift of a Bible is the gift of understanding God.

I want to say a special thank you to those of you who financially give to our church.  NOTHING we do is possible without the funds to do it and we don’t take it lightly when you give your hard earned money to our church.  We added $1500 to our monthly budget with the purchase of the building, but we trust that we will continue without issues because of the number of people who have jumped in to make it happen.

Here are just a couple of pictures of some of the Hazel Dell foyer space.  I should have taken pictures of the Kid’s rooms, because they are OFF THE HOOK!  They are an unbelievable blessing as North Creek is a kid-heavy church.  They have PLENTY of room to play, learn, and grow in their church!

20140114_151833

20140114_151958

I hope you have a really amazing beginning of this new year!  It is starting off with a bang at North Creek and it will only get more exciting as we continue to trust in Jesus to guide us, provide for us, and show up in lives in miraculous ways.  Here we go!

Be blessed!

 

My daughter has recently moved up to gymnastics team, so I spend a great deal of time watching girls flip themselves precariously through the air and somehow land without incident most of the time.  Without any history of gymnastics in my own life, I have learned more since we started than I probably ever needed to know.

One of the most fascinating (and also tedious) aspects of the last year was how much time the coaches spend on strength training.  I have watched so many different workout sessions that my head could explode.  It felt like I waited for months to see my daughter do anything that even remotely looked like gymnastics.  With 12 hours a week in the gym, I was amazed in the beginning at how little was outside of the realm of muscle-building.

But now I get it.  I’ve watched Kennedy’s body begin to move differently.  Her legs, arms, and abs all function together because they have been trained to.  Where she used to struggle with a back bend, she can now easily fold in half, flip, and turn upright again.  And it wasn’t just because she learned the skill, it’s because she earned the skill.  Her body didn’t need to be told to do it; it needed to be prepared to do it.

I think faith is the same way.  If you stretch your faith muscles and work them out in what seems like the smaller things, then the larger challenges in life come easier.  We didn’t plant a church in our first step of faith…that would have been insurmountable.  We had stepped out in multiple avenues for many years to build our strength and trust in God.  When it came time to launch an entire church, we used the reserves of God’s proven reliability from years of experiences.  In seasons of dark doubt, we looked back on those moments to keep us on the right path.

Just like muscles, faith can be gained or lost in any series of habits.  There is never down time to your faith.  The best thing you can do is constantly be finding ways to push yourself in areas of trust in God.

Here’s a couple of thoughts on how to stretch your faith muscles:

1.  Speak what is Biblically true instead of what your flesh feels.  Trust God through your own voice!  When you are tempted to speak negatively, allow God’s Word to be your only outlet expressing your faith.  You will find yourself challenged in your thinking all the time!

2.  Spend time every day in the Bible and prayer.  As you read something or feel like God is telling you something, act on it.  For example, if you read the story about the Good Samaritan, find a way to bless a neighbor that day.  Give your faith time and effort to apply.

3.  Tell people about your relationship with Jesus.  There is nothing that will grow your faith more than making Jesus a part of your conversation.

The good news for my daughter’s gymnastics career is that she will continuously get stronger.  The better news is that there will always be a new and greater challenge in front of her.  That may sound like a bad thing on certain days, but it’s not.  It’s thrilling!  It’s exhilarating!  It’s what keeps us motivated in life.

So, go head, be brave and ask God to grow your faith today…but get ready…it will be the ride of your life!

One of the interesting facets of being pastors is raising kids that love Jesus.  We’ve been warned plenty of times about the negative effects that ministry can have on children, but we blissfully ignore those and keep moving forward.  Today, as I put my 3rd grade girl in a van to go to Kid’s Conference, I was reflecting on some of the ways we are implementing Christ into our kids.  I’ve blogged in this regard before, but I’ll add a few more today.

Here’s some of our foundational parenting tips:

1.  It’s gotta be their call.  I know that no matter how badly I want my kids to love Jesus, it is ultimately their decision.  Sometimes I have to force myself to relax and have real conversations with my kids.  A couple of years ago, Delaney said to me, “I’m not sure I believe in Jesus.”  Honestly, I wanted to plead with her in that moment to change her 6 year old ways.  I could picture myself on my hands and knees with a hankie and some tears.  Instead I calmly said, “That’s OK.  Let’s talk about why you feel that way…”  It opened up lots of conversations, both then and over the next several months.  It also proved to her that following Christ is not merely an emotional response, but a well thought out decision as well.  Her strongly worded sentence was her way of saying, “Mom, I have some questions.”  Christ was never afraid of questions.

2.  They will sit in a lot of vans on their way to a lot of camps and conferences.  I know what happens at camps and conferences and it’s worth every penny!  Being in a pastor’s family is definitely a challenge for kids and teens, so the balance we can give them is to cram all the fun we can into ministry.  One of those ways is to take advantage of overnight trips.  The kids and youth love them and it partners fun with following Jesus…what could be better!

3.  We are more concerned about what we are FOR as a family, rather than what we are AGAINST.  We’d rather show them LOVE for people lost in sin rather than be AFRAID of their presence in our church and lives.  And we would rather them find FREEDOM in their relationship with Jesus rather than feel CONDEMNED by their own sin.  There is a balance to all of this, but the bottom line is we are raising strong, young women with a Biblical foundation.  That should not come with a lens of fear, condemnation, and judgmental hearts.  If we impart the love of Jesus into their hearts, we can ultimately trust them with the behavior choices that come in the future.

So, that’s what we are trying.  I’ll let you know in about 15 years if it worked for us!  What I do know is that God is a God of grace and His mercies are new every morning.  I know that verse was never more real to me than when I started having kids.  I am thankful that God can take the best of what we have to offer and help my kids navigate life and ministry in a positive way!