Good morning! This is our 5th year in Summer Buddies and it has been fun. Each year we have a different Christian focus where we teach kids to read, write, and to fall in love with our God. This year we have been focusing on prayer. Each week has a different memory verse which reminds our kids about the importance of prayer. During our first week we learned Phil. 4:6-7. The week after that was 1 Thess. 5:16-18. Last week was Jeremiah 33:3 and next week we will be learning Luke 18:1. For today though, I want to focus our attention on 1 Thess. 5:16-18.
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you (1 Thess. 5:16-18).
What a blessing it has been to spend the last four weeks taking a look at Isaiah 9. I hope you have been blessed and that all of us have come to better understand the One who was born as a Child, given as a Son, and is called “Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, and the Prince of Peace.” Isaiah delivered the promise of the coming One to those who were distressed, suffering anxiety about their enemies who were plotting and planning their demise, and who would face even more difficult days in the future. The atmosphere was thick with tension and fear and yet the prophet of God stood up and spoke, “Thus saith the Lord…” Listen once again to his comforting words of reassurance that God has not, nor will He ever, forget and abandon His people. Isaiah writes,
1 Nevertheless, there will be no more gloom for those who were in distress. In the past he humbled the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but in the future he will honor Galilee of the Gentiles, by the way of the sea, along the Jordan– 2 The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned. 3 You have enlarged the nation and increased their joy; they rejoice before you as people rejoice at the harvest, as men rejoice when dividing the plunder. 4 For as in the day of Midian’s defeat, you have shattered the yoke that burdens them, the bar across their shoulders, the rod of their oppressor. 5 Every warrior’s boot used in battle and every garment rolled in blood will be destined for burning, will be fuel for the fire. 6 For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. 7 Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the LORD Almighty will accomplish this. (Isaiah 9:1-7 NIV)
There is a heaviness hanging like a cloud over many hearts this Christmas Season. The sounds of Christmas joy are muffled by the kettle drum beats of fear, loneliness, and uncertainty. Hearts that were once full of joy, excitement, and expectation are hollow and the emptiness wrings out the soul. Many are the scenarios that could be shared this morning, but those who are experiencing the emotions that I am describing don’t need a scenario, they are living the story of heaviness as we speak. Continue reading “The Gift of Christmas: Mighty God Isaiah 9:1-7”
Isaiah was a prolific prophet in perilous times. He wrote 66 chapters that are filled with judgment, justice, love, and redemption. Throughout all 66 chapters, through the hard times as well as the seasons of peace and prosperity, there is a thread of hope. Some of the most vivid and awe-inspiring words of hope that have ever been produced are found in the pages of Isaiah. His brilliant and encouraging words are set against a backdrop of politically and spiritually unsettling and disastrous times. God moved upon Isaiah’s heart and he was able to write about God’s promises because he had his mind and heart fixed upon the sovereignty of Almighty God rather than the situations that the nation and the people found themselves enduring. You and I will benefit tremendously over the next four weeks if we will study this passage of Isaiah through and through, but for today we will fix our gaze upon one title that Isaiah gave to Jesus, our Messiah–He is the Wonderful Counselor. Continue reading “The Gift of Christmas: Wonderful Counselor Isaiah 9:1-7”
It is that time of year when churches are hustling, planning, and preparing for the new semester, the kick-off of the Fall activities. As we make those plans, it is vitally important for us as a church to know “who” we are, for us to know God’s purpose for this particular church. Many churches today are dying fast because they don’t have a clue as to who they are or what they are called to be in their community. Other churches are growing rapidly, but numerical growth doesn’t necessarily equate to obedience to God’s call for us as a church.
Let me explain what I mean. We could put together a great line-up of high profile celebrities and schedule them to appear at Britton Christian Church in the Fall. We could create a theme, something like, “Guess Who’s Coming to BCC?” We could follow the theme with a media campaign that gets the message out to all of Oklahoma City. How about lining up Baker Mayfield and Mason Rudolf for September? I think that would bring a lot folks to church on Sunday? Turning to October, does anyone know anybody that knows Beyonce and Jaz Z? If we could get them to come to BCC we might have to pull out some chairs! How about November? November will mark one year until the Presidential election so let’s try to get Donald Trump, Ben Carson, Hillary Clinton, and Bernie Sanders to come and visit us…Let’s shoot for the moon! December means Christmas, right? How about we get Santa Claus to come and share his testimony in morning worship?
I will assure you that if we could secure that line-up that we would set all-time attendance records at BCC, but is that what God has called us to do? Is merely packing the house God’s purpose for us as a church? If our church is nothing more than a well-programmed social club or entertainment venue for Christians in Oklahoma City then we’ve missed the boat. We need to focus on God’s business, His purpose for Britton Christian Church, and not the entertainment business. Continue reading “The Business of the Church Acts 2:42-47”
The BCC Learning Center is a safe place where many youth in our church and community can come and focus on things that matter. Youth like Monica and Teliyah. I have the pleasure of watching these young ladies mature and excel every week and over the past 12 months I have seen an exponential growth in them. That’s why I’m taking the time to recognize them for their accomplishments.
The Oklahoma Public School system has a partnership with Metro Tech where high school students, in their junior and senior year, have an opportunity to attend Metro Tech free of charge. Half of the student’s academic time is spent in traditional school while the other half is spent at a career tech where students can learn marketable skills for job placement. Next year, Monica and Teliyah will both be attending Metro Tech as they prepare themselves for life after high school.
Last week we wrapped up our K-Group focus on authentic community. This week we have been concentrating on what it means to TRULY worship our God. I am convinced that we cannot worship God Biblically if we are not in fellowship with His people.
I came across this powerful video which reminds me (and hopefully you) of one of the major reasons we have a ministry such as K-Groups. LOVE GOD. LOVE OTHERS. Your life depends on it!
JOIN a K-Group or START ONE today and give others the BLESSING of LIFE! Contact: Tre’ Clark (firstname.lastname@example.org).
It was a pretty somber day. The hopes and dreams for liberation had come to an end. For three years they had witnessed His authority and they had even experienced His power. He was so influential that He was able to convince them to leave their family trades. In exchange, they could potentially be abandoned by their families, possibly imprisoned, maybe – if they were lucky – they would be martyred? They thought He was the One. They expected Him to free them from the tyranny of Rome, but He was murdered like all the rest. If it could happen to Him, it could happen to anyone. And so, as they hunkered down in a room behind locked doors, in fear for their lives, they contemplated – “What next?” Who’s going to rise to take up the cause? Well, fast forward to the book of Acts.
At the beginning of each year people challenge themselves in all sorts of ways. Resolutions are being made to eat healthier, to be better parents, to read a certain number of books a month, to make better choices about relationships, and the list goes on and on. As the new semester of K-Groups approaches, I’d like you to consider taking a challenge as a church.
The 30 Day Church Challenge is a “multi-tiered discipleship program.” This powerful campaign will challenge church members to:
DEVOTE themselves to authentic community and learn that church is not a building you go to, but a family you belong to. (Acts 2:44)
DEVELOP a worship lifestyle and discover a closer walk with God. (Acts 2:46-47)
COMMIT to spiritual growth through Bible study and prayer. (Acts 2:42)
EMBRACE stewardship and a generous lifestyle and learn to manage their God-given resources – time, talents, and treasures. (Acts 2:44-45; 4:32-35)
ENGAGE in reaching out to others with the Gospel through theirs words, their love, and their life. (Acts 2:47)
Are you ready for more out of your church attendance?
What does your life look like in the areas of: Community, Worship, Spiritual Growth, Stewardship, and Outreach?
Are your strengths being sufficiently utilized by the church? What are your strengths?
Join a K-Group today and get ready for the Challenge of your life! Church isn’t a building! It’s a Body of committed followers of Jesus who are filled with His Spirit, to do His work, for His glory, that His name be lifted up so that He can save the lost and equip them to serve.
Sign up toady to JOIN A K-GROUP! ACT NOW! Groups are filling up quickly!
For information about our small group ministry OR to start your own K-Group please contact Tre’ Clark (405) 521-7814 OR email@example.com.