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He Sees Them Differently

 

There are people all around us.   Some demand time or energy from us.  We might not choose to have some of them as friends; perhaps because they are self-seeking, mentally confused, simple minded, arrogant, abusive or inconsiderate of others.  Some are wealthy or poor; old or young; male, female or both; weak or strong; educated or illiterate; healthy or sick.  Some are professionals or laborers; extroverts or introverts; helpful or lazy; kind or rough; loud or quiet. The list of attributes used to describe the people around us could continue, each new expletive would show a new perspective of the individual.  Each account of that individual’s qualities or characteristics would define how we see that person and would define what our relationship to them would be like.

Think of the people around you, those that you work with, your neighbors, your family, your friends, those that you would never want to be your friends.  From what perspective do we see those people that are around you?  What thoughts do you have towards and about them?

In 2 Cor 5:16 the Apostle Paul states how his view of people has changed. “So we have stopped evaluating others from a human point of view. At one time we thought of Christ merely from a human point of view. How differently we know him now!”

Many people look at others from the point of view of their own bodily life, with its needs, desires, and pleasures. Consequently they see others only as men of flesh and blood, like themselves.  To the apostle Paul, the former life had so completely ceased that people around him are no longer viewed that way. He saw individuals not as rich or poor, Jews or Gentiles, enemies or friends, but as people for whom Christ died.

There are many people around us whom we see as irritable or offensive.  From our perspective they may be hard to get along with.  Lord help us to see them through a new set of eyes.  Help us to see them as precious people whom You value.

 

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Parenting Teens Online Class: Teens in Crisis

Dear Parents,

One of the hardest things for a parent is to watch your child hurt. Whether it’s the pain of a bumped knee at 2 years old, the pains of a first broken heart in second grade, or the pain of disappointment because they didn’t make the high school basketball team, it all hurts to watch.
Do you know why? It’s because we can’t fix it. We can’t make the world right for our teens and that is a really hard truth to swallow!

What is sometimes even harder is when that pain is caused by the teenager themselves. The decisions and choices they make can often introduce heartache into your family.

I want to encourage you! I want to tell you that you have done a good job raising that teenager. I want you to know that your teenager’s choices do not reflect whether or not you are a good parent! It is so easy to own our kids choices, good or bad. But they are our teenagers’ choices. Not yours and not mine.

And when they make the wrong ones, and they will, show them grace. That’s what our Heavenly Father does for us. Show them mercy and forgiveness. Allow them to bear the consequences for their choices without rescuing them. Basically, show them unconditional love no matter what!

It sure was easier when they were two with a hurt knee.

Here’s a quick video to encourage those of you who are struggling with this: https://goo.gl/XwH4Ni

 

“The sun’ll come out…tomorrow…bet your bottom dollar that tomorrow there’ll be sun!” That song from the Broadway show “Annie” never ceases to put a smile on my face. Now sometimes it looks more like a grimace, but that depends on how bad the day actually is! And as the parent of a teenager sometimes this is all you have to hold on to. The sun does come up the next day no matter what you are dealing with today. And in that there is hope!

And that hope is the gift that God gives us each day as we walk with our teens. No matter what you are going through right now, no matter how grim or hopeless it may seem, God gives us unquenchable hope in Him. Not in each other or in our ability to control circumstances but hope in Him.

If you are in crisis with your teenager right now, hope can seem pretty far away. You are probably weary and discouraged. Isaiah 40:31 says, “Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint!” Oh how we, as parents, need that! Renewed strength, refreshed spirits, determined hope!
When we hurt for or because of our teens, know there is hope. When our teens hurt, show them that hope!

Tweetable Thoughts

  • “Christ in you, the hope of glory!” Colossians 1:27
  • When your #teen hurts, listen, listen, listen! #goodidea
  • Crisis doesn’t last forever, it just feels like it. Hang on!
  • Close your eyes, click your heels three times and say, “there’s no place like hope!”
  • When it gets to be too much, hide…in Him! #Psalms32:7
  • Write your #teen a note today telling them you love them!
  • Look in the mirror and see a really great parent!
  • Encourage another parent today with some of the encouragement God has given you!
  • “The sun’ll come out tomorrow!” Don’t forget there can be a purpose in the clouds!
  • Let God encourage you today so that you can encourage your teen!

Feel free to forward this email to other parents of teenagers and have them email me if they would like to join our online parenting class.

 If you want to see previous issues you can view them here:  http://blog.churchoftherock.ca/tag/parenting-teens-online-class

Tim Hamm – Threshold Jr (Grade 6-8) – tim@churchoftherock.ca
Mathew Povey – High School Ministry (Grade 9-12) – mathew@churchoftherock.ca

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The Stranger and the Wall

“Our country is being overrun with foreigners.” “Everywhere I go, I see people from different ethnicities, different cultures.”  “Maybe we should build a wall or develop a policy to keep them out.” 

These statements are sometimes thought.  But God speaks to the Children of Israel in Leviticus 19:34, “The stranger who dwells among you shall be to you as one born among you, and you shall love him as yourself; for you were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.”

God does not see ethnic diversity as a threat.  Other people groups and “strangers” were not to be ostracized from the sphere of connection but instead are to be drawn into the closeness of our families.  The Israelites and ourselves are to love the stranger as if they were a part of our family, born in our house.  This may not be easy.  It may not be what we would naturally do, however this was God’s command to His people.   Elsewhere God gave exhortations about not taking the values or the gods of the foreigners, but this did not mean that they were not to welcome the stranger and encourage them.

Perhaps if we were more loving and considerate to those that are strangers in our midst there would be more peace and understanding.  After all, we were all strangers to God, and He loved us enough to bring us into His family.  Could we not love and care for others?

Take a moment to consider who is the stranger in your midst that you need to spend more time with.  Then pray and ask our Lord to fill you with a heart of care and compassion that embraces the foreigners and the strangers in your midst.

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Worship at WOW

Just a typical Wednesday morning…

Worship at Women of Worth

“Hello Ladies!  Every morning we start our session with a time of praise and worship where we can express the wonder and truth about God to God!

For those that come early on a Wednesday morning, or stay later once small groups are finished, you get to enjoy what I would call the “chaos of the rehearsal time”.  With many of our worship team ladies having young children, it’s nothing but amusing watching the team rehearse.  With up to 9 young kids on the stage during practice, pulling on their mother’s legs, wanting to grab a mic and sing along, or just plain being young energetic children, it’s amazing how even one song gets rehearsed.  And the ladies without young kids, well they often need to grab a couple in their arms to help out; and do so with the biggest smile on their face.

Why does our incredible worship team do this?  Because they love serving our Lord and using their gifts to glorify Him.  And that’s what it’s all about!  And come Wednesday morning at 9:30am, when the kids are now in childcare; the scene is set for a much calmer stage presence engaging the rest of us into a time of worship.

Each week as I sit at the back by the sound booth and watch these rehearsals (rather happy that I’m no longer in that stage:) I am so inspired by our worship team ladies who serve faithfully every week and do it with such a willing heart.

So today is a special shout out to those involved with worship.  Thank you for everything you do for WOW.

-Lisa

Enjoy this powerful song shared by one of our wow leaders! We are more than conquerors!
https://youtu.be/dMdEoDAHp0s


See you on Wednesday! Thank you once again to all those ladies that are blessing us with snacks every week.

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