Archives For holy spirit

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Before I dive into the weekend, let me remind you that we have a Sling and Stone concert tonight at the Hazel Dell Campus.  You can get directions at www.coffeechurch.com.  It’s at 7 pm!  We aren’t providing childcare tonight, but kids are welcome.

So many great things to catch you up on!

First off, our kids got back from camp and had an amazing time with each other and with Jesus.  We are so grateful to our leaders for taking a week of their lives to invest in our children. I could not be more excited about what my kids experience and take with them after a week of camp.  And a HUGE thank you for all of you who gave scholarships and work opportunities to help us get over 61 people to camp from the hearing church this year.  What a blessing!

Our Deaf Church is at camp this week, so please be praying for them as well!  After this camp, we are all done with camps for the summer.  What a year!

It was birthday on Friday!  I’m 39 and loving life!  I look forward to the next year with great expectancy.

We are incrementally in the process of merging our two campuses into one.  This is a big undertaking as we strategize selling property, an alternate location in the middle for our youth ministries and staff shifts to rethink roles that are no longer needed and new roles to accommodate a church of over 300 people.  Honestly, I’m having a blast watching God work in all of this…not always easy, but His hand is heavy on our lives right now and I know it.  There is a new peace, a new determination, and a new resolve in our hearts.

Feel free to ask us ANY question you need to.  We will be having all-church meetings as we go, but in the meantime, we don’t mind the questions.

Our youth ministries will begin the merge process in late August.  Rather than acclimating our new 6th graders into two separate youth ministries, we are working on a better case scenario of them starting together to alleviate one more transition.  All of our youth went to camp together and did activities together this summer, so they are well-acquainted at this juncture.  We’ll keep you posted on the details as we have them.

Sunday was something special.  At Battle Ground, Mark closed up our I am New series, which was such a clear look at who we are in Christ.  To truly understand who Jesus has created us to be, we MUST be Bible readers.

I’ve challenged you to read Romans a couple of weeks ago.  My next challenge for you is to read Acts.  Good luck!  It’s a fun one!

Over at Hazel Dell we kicked off Testify with guest speaker Roberto Brizuela.  What a gift that man is to our church!  He is a mighty prayer warrior who is intimately connected to the Holy Spirit.  He shared stories of the faithfulness of God in his own life, and I cannot really describe the heavy presence of Jesus in that room.  It was literally like a blanket on my heart.

God is taking North Creek on a journey.  My prayer is that with humble hearts, you will come with us.

 

2 Chronicles 7:14New International Version (NIV)

14 if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.

Loving the Church

stacynewell —  May 15, 2015 — 12 Comments

There’s a blog going around that makes my heart break.  You might have even read it…it’s yet another writing by a so-called Christian ripping apart the Church and how misguided apparently every pastor on the planet actually is.  And I don’t understand it at all….even if it’s true.

You see, if I were Satan, I would get some young, punk blogger to write an article just like that and then I would get embittered or confused Christians to share it all over social media.  That would be a sure-fire way to destroy the Bride of Christ one broken soul at a time.  Good call, Satan. Good call.

On the other hand, if I were Jesus, I would have some young, punk blogger write her stories of her deep love for the Church.  I would have her tell the tales of ministry in the Pacific Northwest…the least churched region of America.  Maybe if she writes, someone who needs a Savior will fall in love with an imperfect church in Vancouver, Washington and come to see about her Christ.  Maybe.  Just maybe.

So, I’m fighting with everything I’ve got to speak well of His Church.  ‘Cause I LOVE His church.  I love His church, all it’s faults, and the journey His Church is taking to find Him, exalt Him, and honor Him.  You may disagree with the means, but I haven’t met a pastor who wanted anything but the life-changing power of Jesus.  And I deeply honor each one for that very reason.  They get up every morning and keep loving people and trying new things to reach people.  Bravo, pastor, bravo!  Keep up the fight!

We’ve had our fair share of critics ripping apart our church over the years as well.  And one thing has been constantly true: while the critics are complaining, we are neck deep in the Holy Spirit’s beautiful work.  The dichotomy is heartbreaking at times. While one group is seeking the face of Jesus, the other is seeking the “problems with the church.”

Let me be clear: You will always find what you seek. 

If you want to find Jesus in the halls of our church, you will no doubt find His powerful presence in the midst of the efforts of a multitude of volunteers, prayer warriors, and passionate people.  If you want to find problems, you probably won’t even make it through the front door without a list a mile long.  It’s your choice, but it’s also your price to pay for that choice.

We spend our days walking with people through profound testimonies of salvations, healings from long awaited prayers, homeless families getting jobs and housing, the Holy Spirit changing a spouse’s heart against an affair, pregnancies that were said would never happen, and on and on and on.  His POWER is ALIVE AND WELL!  And then on the same note we weep daily over lives in our church that need an intersection of Jesus.  Lives broken by addictions, molestations, divorces, abandonment, and pain.  We carry a weight that walks the hallways of our buildings every Sunday that most will never see.  We weep daily. 

Ironically those moments are all too often followed with negativity from others over the music choices, the décor, our cheap seats, how we do the offering, some offense over an obscure sentence one of our “renegade” preachers accidentally said… We get accusations about how we don’t love Jesus and how we should love Jesus differently. We get told how ridiculous our website is.  And how everything would be better if we fixed our parking lots….Nothing we do is good enough, right enough, or godly enough….

And what do I wish I could tell the critics?

 

Hush.

It’s hard to hear the Holy Spirit over your voice.

HE IS SPEAKING.

He is calling His children home.

His love for His Bride is deep and wide.

He is here to change a NATION….OUR NATION.

Do you hear Him?

Get on your knees and declare Him Lord.  He is Holy. Righteous…so, so holy…

Hush.

 

No more division, no more dissention.  No more blogs about how terrible pastors are and how broken His Church is.  No more.  Correct or incorrect, the repercussions are devastating to the very thing that Jesus loves most.

You are frustrated at Church, because YOU are frustrated with your own lack of Jesus in your heart.  But this Sunday, do me a favor at whatever church your feet may fall into…

Seek Him with a precious abandon. 

Your frustration at the shortcomings of the pastor standing in front of you who was called by God will melt in the face of Jesus.  You will find that you won’t worry about the music, the lighting, the dirty nursery toys.  You will find that you have no choice but to hush in His holy presence.  You will also find that when you are standing face to face with the God of the universe, you won’t have the guts to speak against His bride.  You will find humility and honor in that moment.

You will just find His face.  If you really want to see the Church awaken…just find His face.

Hush.