Monthly Archives: May 2014

So many people in my world are struggling with discouragement in their lives…it’s a pretty common occurrence for all of us.  Discouragement can suck the joy, the life, and the fun out of…well…everything.

I think this is where we are created to help each other.  While there are a lot of personal disciplines that we can do with our own effort, such as prayer and devotions, there is a whole other level of our well-being that depends on others.  (This is probably why Jesus says to go to church and be a part of the His community!)

Here are some verses about our role to encourage those around us:


2 Corinthians 13:11 – Finally, brothers and sisters, rejoice! Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.

1 Thessalonians 5:11 – Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.

1 Thessalonians 5:14 – And we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone.


The Bible even links discouragement to sin when we read that those who are encouraged by one another can be kept from sin.

Hebrews 3:13

But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.
It is imperative that we all work of “job” of encouragement to the best of our ability today.  Who in your world needs encouragement today?  Have you told your leaders that you appreciate their effort?  Have you told your kids that they are doing a good job?  Have you told your spouse what you value about them?  What about that elderly neighbor who needs to know that their life has meaning?
Today, and everyday, let’s not allow time to pass without seeing the opportunities around us to spread encouragement.  When you feel like you will sound silly expressing those thoughts, remind yourself that God created us to be encouragers!



Thank you to all of the men and women who serve our country!  We set aside this weekend to honor those that have given their lives for our freedom.  I hope you spent time with friends/family and appreciated those relationships.

North Creek was blessed with another baby today!  Congrats to Alex and Lindsey on the birth of their daughter!

Over at Battle Ground on Sunday, missionary Matt Mann from Botswana, came to visit.  He preached a great sermon and it was such an honor to have him!  Would you consider making a monthly pledge to missions?  You can mark your giving as Be Present and it will go to support their work all over the world.

At Hazel Dell and the Deaf Church they both had messages about marriage.  So fun!  It was a great message, even for our singles.  Mark told the story of him climbing a tree to win my love…it worked!

We had our leadership team over for a BBQ on Sunday.  There is such joy in my heart as I watch that group interact!  Our team is made up of most of the original leadership team that began North Creek and the new team members that we have added along the way.  I watched some of the teenagers jumping on the trampoline and took a moment to smile inside…they were the same boys who had their first North Creek Kid’s Church in my backyard 8 years ago before we officially launched.  They were toddlers back then and now they are leading, serving, and still friends after all this time.

On that note, if you want to truly love a church…stay there.  Longevity and loving people even when they fail you is the key to joy and happiness.  There is no one on our team that hasn’t failed me and there is no one I haven’t failed.  Yet we have two things binding us together…commitment and forgiveness.  I love those people regardless of their performance and they give me the same gift.  Try it.  You’ll be amazed at what God will teach you if you don’t abandon people when things aren’t perfect.

Speaking of perfect, thank you to all of the people who have helped us keep our campuses looking great!  We have people who do yardwork, maintenance, and cleaning…it is an amazing blessing and everything looks AMAZING!  If you’d like to jump into one of those teams, email Kim at

Also, we are looking for more nursery and Tiny Town assistants at both campuses.  This is an awesome opportunity for our teenagers as well!  We just ask you to serve one Sunday a month.  And both of our nurseries have a live feed to the main service, so you can watch while you rock!

Have a great week!  Be blessed!

2014-05-19 13.45.00Congrats to our Battle Ground youth pastors, Mat and Janell Marbrey, on the birth of Chloe on Sunday!  Baby #1 of 3 that we are expecting this month at North Creek.  We got to meet her on Monday and she is just a gorgeous little girl!

Small Groups registration opened on Sunday for our summer semester.  Would you take a moment to sign up asap?  You’ll find the complete list at  It is such a great opportunity to get to know some people at North Creek.

We are a couple of weeks into our current series, My Greatest Investment.  We are talking a lot about using the time we have been given wisely and with purpose.  Many great insights into parenting, being married, and our personal discipleship.

Read your Bible today.  Too many of us have CNN theology…we believe what we see on the news and what we are being told by media and our culture.  God has a greater plan and purpose for your life than what the world has to say.  We must know what Jesus has to say in order to allow Him to mold and shape our hearts.

Summer Camp is right around the corner for both kids and youth.  We give $50 scholarships to help students get to camp.  If you would like to donate, you can give in the Giving Boxes or online.  Just mark the giving “Scholarship”.  The other thing you can do is Rent a Student.  If you have projects around your house and would like a student to help you, please contact Kris at and she will help you get as many students as you need.  We have lots of Hazel Dell and Battle Ground students ready to work!

We have lots of new faces around every Sunday.  Make sure you meet someone every week!

If you are free on Thursday, we are doing some yard work at Hazel Dell from 9:00 am – 12:00 pm.  We are down to the final details in our parking lot and we are excited to get it all done!

I hope that you have a wonderful week!  If you don’t, just remember that North Creek Church loves you and believes in you.  Be blessed!


A flood of emotions ran through me this week as I turned from one disappoint to another.  Hurt.  Betrayed.  Sad.  Confused…ugh…

One thing that will be consistent on this earth is that humanity will hurt you.  People will let you down.  Sometimes the boundaries will seem invisible as people cross lines that you were sure were laid in cement.  And it will never cease to feel like a blindside.

As I prayed through each situation that came across my path this week, one thing God kept showing me was a mirror.  He kept gently reminding me of one thing:  I have hurt people with my decisions as well.


“But Lord, that was never my intention. I was just doing what seemed best for my life at the time.”

Nonetheless, the truth still stung.  I am just as fallible as the person next to me and my own humanity will result in hurting those around me at times.

But it’s much easier to point the finger at others than quietly contemplate where I am weak, isn’t it?

Yet when I stop long enough to seek the heart of God, one thing is always true: Grace precedes my judgment.

Grace for those who purposely hurt me.

Grace for those who hurt me in the process of making decisions.

Grace for those who never even knew my name, but their actions still impacted me.

And it is in that grace where the hurt and anger can be dealt with by Jesus, rather than solidifying into bitterness and resentment.  In this backwards world of Christianity, it is there that I win, it is there that I get my due, it is there where freedom becomes my prize.  It is there where revenge is no longer mine, but God’s…and I can rest in His justice.

It is also there where I can find the forgiveness that I need when I fail others.

His mercies are new every morning and many of us need them today…

Such a wonderful weekend as we gathered together to honor Jesus! We finished the Comeback series this week, but we never really finish telling people that it’s not too late to comeback to Jesus.

In fact, two people gave their lives to Jesus this weekend.  Nothing better than that!

Chris Harold preached through some intense toothache pain at Hazel Dell.  I was formulating Plan B if he passed out.  Thankfully we ended the series without incident!

Did you know that our Youth Ministries are ROCKING it???  Battle Ground took off like wildfire and Hazel Dell continues to set the tone for leadership and changed lives.  We love teenagers and look forward to watching God use our youth to change our community.

The deaf church had amazing time on their missions trip to Mexico last week.  Pastor Jim brought us back candy that tasted like peanut butter chalk.  It’s his favorite candy, so I’m not sure what that says about him…  He said the best part of the Mexico trip was being part of people’s comeback story!

We also had our Network’s Conference last week and enjoyed seeing a lot of our pastor friends.  We also heard some incredible messages.  George Wood, our national leader, preached one of my all-time favorite messages.  It was simply the stories of some of our missionaries from decades ago.  Many of them died never knowing the full impact of their ministries.  It reminded me that God is doing a deep work that I may never be able to see or understand until Heaven.  Keep going!!!

We need more volunteers!  Our kid’s classes are about to pop and we need assistants.  If kid’s aren’t your thing, maybe Kid’s Checkin is more up your alley?  It’s a great way to bless the children’s ministry without actually working with kids.  You can sign up to volunteer at  We would love to have you involved and it’s a fabulous way to get to know people.

We are working on small groups for the summer.  We still need leaders!  It’s a fun semester to jump in because summer is shorter and more informal.  If you are interested, email Kari at for more information.

We have an incredible series coming up called My Greatest Investment.  We only have one life, each with 24 hour-filled days, but there are keys places to put our time that will reap great fruit.  Join us for the next four weeks as we dive in!

P.S.  It’s Mother’s Day next Sunday.  Take your mom to church!

Whew!  Always a boatload of stuff going on! I hope you are full of joy and peace.  Be blessed!