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So first week back at school… everyone survive?
We had a really nice holiday in Turangi, went rockclimbing, fishing, through a huge maze in taupo, played a lot of board games, got addicted to icarly and did touristy things. Good times. But when we pulled out of the house we realized we had forgotten to plan for one very important thing. low techness. No usb plug in the car. Which meant that lifefm ran out once we hit the bombays and then it was either white noise, bad radio, or cds. Now I’m a mother. Which means my car has two kinds of cds in one particular ratio. 90% kid cds. 10% my cds. Which means when there are 10 cds that can fit down the pockets of the side doors… only one is mine. I ignored the other 9 and put on karnaga by cindy ruakere. For those that haven’t heard cindy – she is a fierce maori worshipper and she rocks it. Her cd became our holiday anthem.
And it stirred my heart.
How many of you know that as much as we know Gods love is unconditional and He is amazing and His grace is everlasting and He has saved us, how we can look out the window and the heavens declare the majesty of God, how we can drift into our own space of life and let the embers die? Now I’m not saying I was cold… but I was not white hot.
The holiday was like a turbo fan on my heart heat I am more passionate now about jesus. I am more passionate about other people being passionate about jesus. I am more passionate now about revival.
He said to me, Prophesy to these bones and say to them, O you dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. Thus says the Lord God to these bones: Behold, I will cause breath and spirit to enter you, and you shall live;
I will wrap you with muscles and skin, and I will put breath and spirit in you, and you dry bones shall live; and you shall know, understand, and realize that I am the Lord
So I prophesied as I was commanded; and as I prophesied, there was a thundering noise and behold, a shaking and trembling and a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone.
I looked, and tendons and flesh appeared on them and skin covered them, but there was no breath or spirit in them.
Also He said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they may live.”’” So I prophesied as He commanded me, and breath came into them, and they lived, and stood upon their feet, an exceedingly great army.
this is a worship set Leonard does at Morningstar recently, playing lots of the songs he did with us at The River. i esp love Majesty and I will Rejoice. have totally become a “fan” and love his real enthusiasm and passion for Jesus!
He, knowing the kind of people he was dying for
He, letting his open wounds become their open door
Reality is setting in, for the life that I now live
I am living now in him I say
*** we had Leonard Jones (used to be worship leader at morningstar) with us for a worship event over the weekend (saturday and sunday) and wow. the man can play. the man can worship. the man can stir us! the man can write amazing theologically packed lyrics. was an awesome weekend and such a joy to be led in worship by someone with such talent and dedication to his craft as a worship leader. he plays guitar, violin and banjo (as well as others!). so i thought i would share some of my favourite lyrics with you
***** notes from my preach this morning @ The River
The word of the Lord came to Jonah ‘Go to the great city of Nineveh and preach against it, because its wickedness has come up before me.’ But Jonah ran away from the Lord and headed for Tarshish. He went down to Joppa, where he found a ship bound for that port. After paying the fare, he went aboard and sailed for Tarshish to flee from the Lord.
Then the Lord sent a great wind on the sea, and such a violent storm arose that the ship threatened to break up. All the sailors were afraid and each cried out to his own god. And they threw the cargo into the sea to lighten the ship.
But Jonah had gone below deck, where he lay down and fell into a deep sleep. The captain went to him and said, ‘How can you sleep? Get up and call on your god! Maybe he will take notice of us so that we will not perish.’
Then the sailors said to each other, ‘Come, let us cast lots to find out who is responsible for this calamity.’ They cast lots and the lot fell on Jonah. So they asked him, ‘Tell us, who is responsible for making all this trouble for us? What kind of work do you do? Where do you come from? What is your country? From what people are you?’
He answered, ‘I am a Hebrew and I worship the Lord, the God of heaven, who made the sea and the dry land.’
This terrified them and they asked, ‘What have you done?’ (They knew he was running away from the Lord, because he had already told them so.)
The sea was getting rougher and rougher. So they asked him, ‘What should we do to you to make the sea calm down for us?’
‘Pick me up and throw me into the sea,’ he replied, ‘and it will become calm. I know that it is my fault that this great storm has come upon you.’
Instead, the men did their best to row back to land. But they could not, for the sea grew even wilder than before. Then they cried out to the Lord, ‘Please, Lord, do not let us die for taking this man’s life. Do not hold us accountable for killing an innocent man, for you, Lord, have done as you pleased.’ Then they took Jonah and threw him overboard, and the raging sea grew calm. At this the men greatly feared the Lord, and they offered a sacrifice to the Lord and made vows to him.
Now the Lord provided a huge fish to swallow Jonah, and Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.
Running From God
First lets all get on the same page here, we are all JONAH. We’ve shared his thoughts and we’ve made similar decisions. We’ve run from God, we’ve gotten angry at Him and we’ve chosen our own way.
He’s said one thing and we’ve done the opposite.
He’s said go and we’ve said no.
He’s said stop and we’ve put our fingers in our ears.
He has set the standard and we’ve compromised lower.
Let me tell you one thing I’ve learned, in my brief life, I may not understand WHY God is saying something, but He is God and I am not. His go has all of His eternal wisdom and insight behind it. His no has all of His eternal wisdom and insight behind it. God sees the big picture.
We may not have hopped on a boat to tarnish… but we all have our different escape routes…
But the good news is though Jonah ran from God, God never left Jonah
In a good way you can never escape the presence of God.
He loves you too greatly. His love never fails, it never gives up, it never runs out on me. Nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ.
If you are saved, if you believe in Jesus Christ as your Saviour, He will never let you go. You may run for the hills and rebel and live in complete opposite to His ways, but He is your Father. He doesn’t unadopt His kids.
Now there is a lot of conjecture about whether it was it a fish or a whale that swallowed Jonah ? To me it doesn’t matter as it was in the right place at the right time. God provides a way where there seems none.
The whale was God’s rescue mission to save Jonah… Imagine the slush and the filth and the acid and the dead fish! The whale is like the worst worst worst case scenario you could be in. Now we know the end of the story, we know Jonah gets spat out and lands back on the beach… but Jonah has no idea of this. Any moment could be his last breath.
God has personal holiness programme. Our happiness is on His agenda too, God does want you to experience joy and peace and hope and life – but in within the boundaries He, our loving Father sets. He is at work shaping us to make us more like Jesus. Because He knows that is good for us, our best life. But we, even as Christians, forgiven, given a new life, transformed have this part within us that runs after things that will never satisfy, that are hurtful, that will only end in brokenness and heartbreak. And that includes trying harder. You know, everyone has their own distinctive running style. I saw a photo of my brother, who had done really well in a half marathon and I was “oh my goodness! He runs just like dad”! They have this arm thing they do that means I could spot dad from the finish line a couple of hundred metres away. We all run our own way. For some of us running from God involves getting into wild living, drugs, alcohol, partying, or into wrong relationships, serial dating, or into climbing the corporate ladder or blatant disobedience. Anything to fill the void. But sometimes running includes looking like a good church person on the outside but there is something not connected on the inside. I read this great quote last night:
“Why do people persist in their self-destructive behaviour, ignoring the blatant fact that what they’ve been doing for many years hasn’t solved their problems? They think that they need to do it even more fervently or frequently, as if they were doing the right thing but simply had to try even harder.”
Instead of running FROM God we need to RUN to God.
From inside the fish Jonah prayed to the Lord his God. He said: ‘In my distress I called to the Lord, and he answered me. From deep in the realm of the dead I called for help, When my life was ebbing away, I remembered you, Lord, and my prayer rose to you.” Jonah 2
So how do we stop running?
1. STOP: Like Jonah we’ve got to stop – and acknowledge that we’re running. We’ve got to put our hand up and get real. This is an open invitation. You might be 3 steps out the door, 3 miles down the road, 3 days in the belly of a whale. But the invitation is there. Our God is compassionate and merciful.
Let me tell you, you are never too far away from God. Jonah was in the belly of a whale. He had run as far as you could away from the will of God. He was a prophet – his job was to hear from God and he stuck his fingers in his ears and rebelled.
2. IDENTIFY: Jonah was identified by lot as the cause of the massive storm. And then he gave answer to the sailors questions. What kind of work do you do? Where do you come from? What is your country? From what people are you?’ They asked. Jonah answered, ‘I am a Hebrew and I worship the Lord, the God of heaven, who made the sea and the dry land.’ This terrified them and they asked, ‘What have you done?’ (They knew he was running away from the Lord, because he had already told them so.) Just as Jonah identified what the problem was, we identify the running behaviour and contributing factors. Identify what it is standing in the way of your obedience. Then kill it.
Is there rebellion in our life? Disobedience? Are we living more into the shadows than in the light? Are we skipping church? Are we avoiding certain people? Ie caller id
But again more importantly, identify what God says about you – you’re His beloved child, He has a plan and a purpose for you, His mercies never fail, nothing can separate us from His love.
3. CHANGE: We’ve got to change that behaviour, repent, make a lifestyle change, make relational changes, do whatever needs to be done to get back on the right road. The sailors asked Jonah what they should do. Now, most of us will not have such a drastic response such as “toss me in the sea” but we may have to make some radical changes to realign ourselves with the purposes and will of God.
And let me tell you, its worth it. Its worth it to walk with God, it’s worth it to follow His ways, its worth it to be in relationship with Him. Somewhere along the way we’ve dumbed God down to an lifestyle optional extra – full cream, extra sugar and Jesus please. But wow, we can have relationship with God! Jesus died on the cross to set us free from guilt and open the door to supernatural reality and connection with the amazing creator of the universe! That’s like winning every jackpot of every lotto in every country every day of the week plus infinity plus one.
From what I have learned in life if I put anything up on a scale vs God – God wins every time.
Who knows what we might be missing by running from what could very well be God’s means of steering us towards the most magnificent outcome of our lives. Priscilla Shirer
When GOD Ran
In Luke 15 Jesus tells the story of a man who has two sons. The younger son asks his father to give him his portion of the family estate as an early inheritance. Once received, the son promptly sets off on a long journey to a distant land and begins to waste his fortune on wild living. When the money runs out, a severe famine hits the country and the son finds himself in dire circumstances. He takes a job feeding pigs. He is so destitute that he even longs to eat the food assigned to the pigs.
The young man finally comes to his senses, remembering his father. In humility, he recognizes his foolishness, decides to return to his father and ask for forgiveness and mercy. The father who had been watching and waiting, receives his son back with open arms of compassion. He is overjoyed by the return of his lost son! Immediately the father turns to his servants and asks them to prepare a giant feast in celebration.
So the younger son goes off, parties it up, looses it all. So he decides, at his lowest, the whale belly moment so to speak, that he will return home. He stops running and identifies what the problem is and makes a change to put things right with his father.
He leaves the pig pen and begins the journey home. One step at a time. Bracing himself for whatever he would receive when he got home. He left in style, he arrives, in sty.
But watch what happens when he comes in sight. His Father is there, watching from afar. He is keeping a lookout for his son. He hasn’t given up. While the son was a long way off, his father saw him coming. And he ran.
Now we think, that’s nice. The father ran.
But put it in a cultural context here. Middle Eastern men didn’t run. Especially middle aged Middle Eastern men. Ever. It was undignified. Unacceptable. But this father ran.
It says so much about the love the father felt for his son. Extravagant lavish love, so much so that he ran, he forgot about his social standing and social rules and expressed with his whole self how glad he was his son was home.
He saw his son, was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms round him and kissed him. He bear hugs him. Everything he does speaks love.
Remember, the son left in style, but arrived back weary, dirty. He is malnourished. Probably ill looking. Smelling of pigs. Smelling of sweat. He hasn’t probably washed in at least a week, and I’m being generous. He would have slept on the ground. No morning hygiene routine. No toothpaste! He has walked from wherever to here. His feet would reek and you might not even be able to tell what colour his skin is by the ground in layers of dirt.
Yet his father looks beyond that and sees his son and cant get close enough to him. He kisses the dirt. He kisses the stinky son.
Oh and then the son remembers his speech. The one that he has rehearsed in his head with every step closer to home.
Father, I’ve messed up, I’m no longer worthy to be your son…” midspeech his dad stops him.
Worthy? Worthy? Stop right there!
We have 2 kids, Caleb aged 11 and Evangeline aged 7. They’re great kids. But there is never a time we’d disown them. As soon as they were “there” inside me, they were mine and I was their mum. We share blood and dna that can never be extracted. Sure we’d like them to be good kids and grow into great adults and live a life pleasing to God and us but the reality is, they’re our kids. They’re McLean’s whether they like it or not.
Ephesians 2:8-9 says “for by grace you have been saved through faith and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”
Being a child of God is not based on our performance but upon what Jesus did on the cross.
My worthiness isn’t based on anything I can earn or do. I have nothing to boast about apart from the grace and mercy of God, demonstrated in Jesus upon the cross, that while I was still rebellious and running away, Jesus died for me to rescue me.
We are all that son. We are all like Jonah. We have run away from God. We have ignored Him and rebelled against Him. But the invitation of God is to come home. And there He is, watching from afar, filled with compassion, ready to run.
For me that moment happened 20 years go. On Wednesday I celebrated 20 years as a Christian.
I grew up in what could be called a semi religious home. my mum took us to the catholic church. i made my first communion and confirmation. my dad stayed at home and cooked amazing roast lunches. i DID really want to know God though and there are several experiences that i know have shaped my faith, expression and relationship with God from childhood but church was boring and irrelevant. In saying that I follow the new pope on twitter and he says some awesome stuff about Jesus!
In early teens though I decided that God must not be real, as He didn’t seem to be “there” – so I figured I would live my life without the “hassle” of thinking about Him and “His laws” (very catholic way of thinking) and so did that. i chose to live my own life my own way.
Our family moved quite a bit and when I was 15 we moved from Gore (the 5th place I’d lived already)… where I went from a 300 student co-ed school to Blenheim, where I had to go to a 1000+ all girls school! Talk about freak out! It was major culture shock! one of my new friends then casually asked me during classics class if i would like to go to youth group with her. I went along with her one night for one reason and one reason only. There were boys there! Great reason for going to youth group eh lol!
Anyway on that first night someone PRAYED and I KNEW God was REAL and I knew I wanted to know Him. i had seen people pray my whole life when i went to church with mum – and this was like it was real, and that he was really talking to a real God, that i could know, not far away, but near and personal, and not grumpy and angry, but loving and filled with grace.
so i went along to easter camp and i think for the first time heard clearly about who Jesus is and why he died on the cross and that you could have peace with God, peace on the inside.
i went forward when they asked if anyone would like to give their lives to God and had what can only be called a supernatural experience. i felt God. i felt a warmth and a heat that couldnt be explained by the room i was in. i felt happy and peace. i felt loved. i knew that i had crossed a line, that 10 minutes before i was not a christian but then all of a sudden i was.
God loves you. Just as He ran towards me, He runs towards you.
Running WITH God: Perspective
Jonah ran because had a different perspective from God. When God called Jonah to preach to Ninevah Jonah disagreed with God’s perspective.
A bit of background: NINEVEH was the famous capital of ancient Assyria in seventh century BC, a economic and trade hub for the Assyrian empire. Its ruins can be found in modern day iraq. It was also famous in the ancient world because it was a centre for the worship of Ishtar (Astarte) the fertility goddess. The Assyrians brought many scientific, philosophical and practical advances to humanity including many inventions that we take for granted today. Everyday most of us lock our doors when we leave the house, locks and keys were invented in Assyria. They also invented a system that kept time and ascribed 360 degrees to a circle. They are given credit for inventing paved roads, the first postal system, the first use of iron, the first libraries, the first plumbing, flush toilets and aqueducts.
Jonah saw Nineveh as a barbaric terrorist state – the Assyrians were their worst enemy – but God looked at Nineveh and marked them for repentance and salvation.
Just as in Hosea 1 it says about the people of Israel – In the place where it was said to them, “You are not my people”, they will be called “children of the living God”. Hosea 1:10
In a way Jonah looked at Nineveh and said THEY ARE NOT MY PEOPLE. That’s not my calling! They are not my target demographic! I don’t relate to them! I have nothing in common with them! I am not going to THEM!
No darkness is too dark for God to shine His light in.
God calls things differently than you call them because He sees things differently than you see them.
Are you seeing your situation the way God does?
What is God’s perspective on your past? Do you see yourself the same way?
What does God say about your workplace? You are positioned there to be salt and light
When you’re screaming hopeless can you hear the heartbeat of God declaring hope?
What is God saying about your family? What strategy has He given you to repair your marriage?
Who or what is your Ninevah?
Will you let your perspective line up with Gods… and then what will you do about that?
Recalibrating . . . My eyes to His vision, my ears to His speaking, my heart to His heart’s beating.
So what do you do when God calls you and everything within you screams RUN in the opposite direction?
1. STOP. I saw a funny picture the other day on facebook, and I’m not sure if its true or not, in my vast experience of facing off against wild bears in the wild, but it was of a guy playing dead on the ground when a big brown bear is sniffing around him. Like I said, no experience bear hunting, so I googled. And yes. If faced with a bear in the wild, apart from all the obvious things like STAY AWAY, you should lie facedown, to protect all your vital parts and protecting your neck with your hands laced behind the neck. Apparently the bear will think you’re not fresh and walk away. There you go, you learned something. But, segway here, when faced with the freak out moments from God we should stop.
Stop and breathe.
Stop and remember who God is. Big. Powerful. Creative.
Stop and remember who we are. Called by God. Children of God. Anointed by God. Appointed by God.
Stop and remember His promises and that He is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow.
2. IDENTIFY. Indentify what it is that is freaking you out. Fight the fear and respond with faith.
“Instead of hiding from the world or being overwhelmed by the evil of it, we need to strengthen our spiritual cores and trust in the power of the spirit at work in us.” Christine Caine
My dad is a runner. He would run marathons all the time. He would take every Wednesday afternoon off, and run. For fun. He explained to me what the phrase hitting the wall meant after one run. You get to a certain milage and then boom. You feel like you’re going to puke. Or die. Or both. Your legs hurt. Your arms hurt. Your neck hurts. You want to give up. At that moment you could choose to pull out of the race… or keep going. You know you just have to push through a little bit more and then boom, second wind. I asked him what would get him through the wall? His reply was very insightful. “I did what I knew I could do. Run. One step at a time. And I knew the end wasn’t far away.” He identified what he could do and what the purpose of each step was.
You are in a race. I sometimes have jillian Michaels, from the biggest loser, as my life coach on my shoulder. “unless you faint, puke or die, then keep going!”
I love what lois said last week Don’t tell God how big your storm is, tell the storm how big your God is. My God is the one who said “peace” and the storm stopped. My God is the one who made the wind and the water in the first place! When David faced off against Goliath he couldn’t believe that no one had stood up to this measly teeny tiny giant up till then. David said in 1 Samuel 17:45 “You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel” Identify God’s perspective. Change. Change the behaviour from flight to fight. Step out in faith. Step out of the boat. Pick up your slingshot. Face towards Nineveh. If God has called you to slay giants He will make you a giant killer. Trust God. Trust God. Trust God. Brennan Manning says “Define yourself radically as one beloved by God.” Let this be your identity. Let this inspire you to run with God. God’s perspective of you is that you are His child. That means you carry the mission of a child of God and the authority of a child of God. Greater is HE in you than he that is in the world.
3. CHANGE. Here are 3 questions we can ask ourselves – questions to propel us into change and action.
#1 – What is the next step we need to take in order to stay in step with the vision the Lord has given us?
#2 – Are there any obvious problems that we are trying to deny that simply need to be dealt with? (There are some things you cannot “pray away!”)
#3 – What if you truly began to believe and live like you were created, positioned, empowered called by God to?
Wherever you are today, God loves you. He has a plan and a purpose for your life. He invites you to run with Him. He invites us to stop running and to say Yes to Him.
jonah ran from God. yes we know that.
but the main thing is he turned back towards God.
the message of jonah is that God is full of grace, full of mercy.
there is always an infinity + one chance with God.
no matter how far we run, God pursues us.
there were steps that jonah took to return to God including making a choice what voices to listen to.
jonah had to make a choice to listen to what he knew to be right vs listening to the sailors.
who are the sailors in your life?
telling you to stay put? to not be so radical? that God cant help you? that there are other ways to solve the problem? that we’ll work it out together?
who are steering you in the wrong direction?
who are you giving a voice to?
who is influencing your life?
even though there was no boat to take him back to land jonah knew what direction he should have been going… back towards ninevah. he stepped out of the boat and into the water – just as peter did. and God provided a whale.
on friday tony and caleb went to the blues vs highlanders game at eden park – it was the family celebration for his 11th birthday. it involved a trip to mcdonalds for dinner and then a ride on the train into the city and changing trains to head out west to eden park, then a short walk from station to stadium. and of course the reverse on the way home (minus the mcdonalds of course). it was a thrilling game. piri weepu was on form. there were 2 yellow cards aka drama and one guy got knocked out eek! the boys had magnificant views of the try line for all the important scoring.
Last night our women’s ministry DAUGHTERS had a fantastic night together – STEP UP. our gorgeous pastors wife annika shared about stepping up and stepping out – past our past, out of the comfort zone, and into destiny and purpose. we had lots of fun activities and stations for people to meet and mingle at. i love DAUGHTERS because it brings women of of all ages (18+) into one place, together loving and serving, learning and growing. i had some fantastic heart filling conversations that kept me half awake dreaming and redreaming!
We could tell you what we know.
That — depression is like a room engulfed in flames and you can’t breathe for the sooty smoke smothering you limp — and suicide is deciding there is no way but to jump straight out of the burning building.
That when the unseen scorch on the inside finally sears intolerably hot – you think a desperate lunge from the flames and the land of the living seems the lesser of two unbearables.
Our Bible says Jesus said, “It is not those who are healthy who need a doctor, but those who are sick.” Jesus came for the sick, not for the smug. Jesus came as doctor and He makes miracles happen through medicine and when the church isn’t for the suffering, then the Church isn’t for Christ.
Because we are the Body of the Wounded Healer and we are the people who believe the impossible — that wounds can be openings to the beauty in us.
We’re the people who say: there’s no shame saying that your heart and head are broken because there’s a Doctor in the house. It’s the wisest and the bravest who cry for help when lost.
There’s no stigma in saying you’re sick because there’s a wounded Healer who uses nails to buy freedom and crosses to resurrect hope and medicine to make miracles.
There’s no guilt in mental illness because depression is a kind of cancer that attacks the mind. You don’t shame cancer, you treat cancer. You don’t treat those with hurting insides as less than. You get them the most treatment.
and as always. i love Jesus with all i am and all my heart and all my soul and all my days. For His glory and the building of His kingdom and the rescue of the lost.
so what are you totally loving this week?
… check out what other peeps are loving whatever day of the week it is over at MNM’s BLOG
Changing Our Minds About Generation iY
So, how should we lead these young people? May I talk straight? We must master the art of mentoring them and leading them. Let me suggest six shifts we must make:
1. Don’t think CONTROL, think CONNECT.
Often our ambition as a parent or leader is to seize control. Studies show that parents who over-program their child’s schedule often breed kids who rebel as teens. Instead, wise leaders work to connect with them. Why? Because once we connect, we build a bridge of relationship that can bear the weight of truth. We earn our right to influence them.
2. Don’t think INFORM, think INTERPRET.
This is the first generation of kids that don’t need adults to get information. It’s coming at them 24/7. What they need from us is interpretation. Their knowledge has no context. We must help them make sense of all they know as they build a wise and healthy worldview.
3. Don’t think ENTERTAIN, think EQUIP.
I’ve seen parents who are consumed with entertaining their child. I know teachers who approach their classrooms the same way. A better perspective may be: how can I equip my young person for the future? If I give them relevant tools to succeed, they’ll stay engaged. Happiness is a by-product. True satisfaction comes from growth.
4. Don’t think “DO IT FOR THEM” think “HELP THEM DO IT.”
Adults have been committed to giving kids a strong self-esteem for thirty years now. According to the American Psychological Association, healthy and robust self-esteem actually comes from achievement not merely affirmation. We lead for the long-term not the short term. Sure it’s quicker to do it yourself—but it’s better to transfer a skill.
5. Don’t think IMPOSE, think EXPOSE.
When adults become scared a kid is falling behind, we tend to impose a rule or a behavior on them. While mandatory conduct is part of life, if kids feel forced to do it; they usually don’t take ownership of it; it’s your idea not theirs. Why not think “expose” instead of impose. Show them something. Give them an opportunity they can’t pass up.
6. Don’t think PROTECT, think PREPARE.
Adults paranoid about the safety of our kids. Sadly, in our obsession over safety, we’ve failed to prepare them for adulthood. Instead of fearing for them, it’s better to recall your entrance into adulthood and discuss what you learned that helped you succeed. The greatest gift a parent can give their child is the ability to get along without them.
7. Don’t think LECTURE, think LAB.
When young people do wrong, we’re predisposed to lecture them. While it’s a quick way to transmit an idea, it’s not the best way to transform a life. We must create experiences from which we can process truths—like science class—a lab with a lecture. They’re not looking for a sage on the stage with a lecture but a guide on the side with an experience.
Are you interested in developing next generation leaders? Join us for two days in Atlanta this June as Growing Leaders hosts our annual National Leadership Forum. As a member of the Catalyst community, use the code CATALYST for discount registration rates. For more information or to register now, visit nationalleadershipforum.org
*** yesterday we had a fantastic housegroup leaders meeting – thanks pastor peter – and talked about group discussions and some of the core elements that make group discussion teaching work well in the housegroup context.
R Room Engagement
U Uplifting and Honouring
P Presence of God
* create a safe environment
* guard your atmosphere
* have an objective but go with the flow
* ask open questions
* be positive and honouring, even if you have to interrupt and redirect
* make space for God to speak
* value different perspectives
**** notes from sunday night church with Len Buttner, guest speaker @ The River Christian Church
Now Elisha had been suffering from the illness from which he died. Jehoash king of Israel went down to see him and wept over him. ‘My father! My father!’ he cried. ‘The chariots and horsemen of Israel!’Elisha said, ‘Get a bow and some arrows,’ and he did so. ‘Take the bow in your hands,’ he said to the king of Israel. When he had taken it, Elisha put his hands on the king’s hands. ‘Open the east window,’ he said, and he opened it. ‘Shoot!’ Elisha said, and he shot. ‘The Lord’s arrow of victory, the arrow of victory over Aram!’ Elisha declared. ’You will completely destroy the Arameans at Aphek.’ Then he said, ‘Take the arrows,’ and the king took them. Elisha told him, ‘Strike the ground.’ He struck it three times and stopped. 2 kings 13:14-18
Elisha became sick
Bow = power of the Holy Spirit,
arrow = personal word
We are born if the spirit and we live in Him and He in us
Elisha’s hand = Gods hand coming upon you, impartation
Window = season of opportunity
East = new day, new dawn, birthing something new
Shoot = obedience to obey God and take the opportunity and season
Arrow = set free, deliverance
Spec = enemies rule
Strike = Gods permission to move
Ground = where you are now
God is with us in the battle
Go deeper in God
Bow and arrows are spirit and the word
Press into the word of God
Desperate for the hand of God to be on his church so we become more like jesus
Working together with God
Working together with people
Full commitment to Him
The window is open
The power of God is released through obedience
Willingness in our life to be stretched
Flow in needs a flow out
Allow God to be bigger in you
Season if stretching and growth