Become

Become

Shake This Place

Empowered by the Holy Spirit Since Easter, we have looked to the first four chapters of Acts to answer the question, “What does a church truly empowered by the Holy Spirit look like?” Can what was experienced by the earliest followers of Jesus be experienced by his followers today? Last Sunday we read in Acts 4:31, “After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word…

A Letter on Racism

Dear Alsbury Family, I have accepted the responsibility to draft our official position regarding the sin of racism. This should be an easy task, but the pervasive strife and tension throughout our country tell me the challenge is anything but easy.  The last time I spoke specifically about the sin of racism, multiple families left our worship service. I realize this effort to unite our church in a genuine and public stand against racism risks offending some of the very people I…

How Do We Respond?

Few can recall a more tense season than the one we are living right now.  The deaths of George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery are described with the adjectives, disturbing, heartbreaking, senseless, and indefensible. No matter the crimes they were suspected of – or past crimes they may have committed – the events leading up to their deaths were shocking and unjustified. In this, we all agree. How to respond to differing opinions regarding how best to voice our grief and…

A Time for Celebration

Last Sunday was exciting… Over one hundred people gathered last Sunday for our on-site, in-person worship service. Many more joined through Facebook Live and the Alsbury Church YouTube channel.  Based upon engagement by those worshipping in person it was clear people were excited about returning. It was a special experience and the number in attendance will only grow. Based upon the number who engaged through our virtual platforms it was clear many people continue to have serious reservations about in-person…

Invest in Prayer

World Investments vs. Kingdom Investments We have seen volatile ups-and-downs in the stock market. People lost as much as ten percent of their retirement savings in a singe day. Record setting declines followed by neck wrenching increases give new meaning to the old adage, “It’s a roller coaster ride.”  The volatility is due in part to a global fear over the coronavirus. Restricted travel and trade prompted massive selloffs in stock markets around the world. We all feel the impact…

His mission is our mission

In Luke’s Gospel, chapter four, we read that Jesus began his public ministry with a reading from Isaiah. In the synagogue in Nazareth, surrounded by respected religious leaders of the community, Jesus read: The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of…

Supremely And Selflessly

What is undeniable evidence of a genuine relationship with Jesus? How can we know that a person belongs to Christ?  Jesus said our love for one another is evidence that we belong to him. In His words… A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples if you love one another. John 13:34-35 John wrote that our obedience to…

Love is the motivation

There’s No Other Explanation Dick and Rick Hoyt are endurance athletes. To date they have completed at least seventy- two marathons and six Ironman Triathlons. Imagine the difficulty of running a marathon, or 26.2 miles. More difficult still is an Ironman Triathlon, which involves a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bicycle ride, and a 26.2 mile run; all back-to-back without breaks. To complete one such endurance event is pretty amazing. “Team Hoyt,” however, competes as very few other teams…

WELL DONE MY GOOD SERVANT

Well Done In Matthew and Luke, we find parables in which a master affirms his servants for faithful productivity. The parables present the scenario of servants entrusted by their master with various sums of money. The master expected the servants to manage the funds, generating a positive return on investment. Those who did, heard the master say, “Well done, my good servant.” Those who didn’t heard the words, “You wicked, lazy servant.” The words “Well done” are spoken in the…

What are you neglecting?

Woe to you The twenty-third chapter of Matthew records Jesus speaking judgment against the religious leaders of the day. Six times we find the words, “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites!” I find it easy to criticize the Pharisees. Their self-righteousness and hypocrisy are revealed in both attitude and action; all found upon the pages of the four Gospels. I find it far more difficult to identify my own self-righteousness and hypocrisy. What are we…

The journey of forgiveness

The difference between refusing to forgive and struggling with forgiveness is huge. refusal vs. struggle The first, refusing to forgive, is open rebellion against our Lord. Jesus commands us to forgive. Jesus expects us to forgive freely, completely, and consistently. Our model for forgiveness is Jesus himself. We are to “forgive as the Lord forgave you (Colossians 3:13).”The second, struggling with forgiveness, is simply part of the human experience. To grant forgiveness to those who have hurt us is not…

Does ANYTHING exceed your love for Jesus

Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. Matthew 10:37 Nobody has ever loved us as Jesus loves us. Nobody.On the cross Jesus demonstrated just how much he loves us. He suffered and died as a living testimony to his love which is like no other. Response to His Challenge I received a message Sunday in response to…