Take Hold – of the life that is truly life!

Our upcoming series will come to life from the verse found in 1 Timothy 6:19.

So what are those things that are “truly life?”

What questions do you have regarding that topic? What things bring you “true life?” What things “take life” from you? This next series will be built in prayer and seeking to answer your questions. Blessings on the Journey as we seek together to follow the King!

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Oops! Missing link

The link to the youtube video didn’t come through in the email version of my post.

Here is the link to the post on the website to watch the video

Revival

Enjoy!

~DRBOBF

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Revival

So as I was leaving church yesterday after teaching on Mark and after seeking the Lord in prayer and praise and in my own heart for revival this new song comes on the radio…

 

Cate was with me and we kinda got chills. Things that make you go hmmmm…

Come Lord Jesus! Holy Spirit reign in us and rain down on us! Bring revival to our land!

 

Until next time… FOLLOW THE KING!!!   ~DRBOBF

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Weekly Newsletter Test

UPDATED Grace Logo-600

Experience Grace, Practice Community, Be the Church

Worship, Grow, Serve

Made some changes and now going to update and see if it resends…

Nope it didn’t – so it won’t do any good to edit the newsletter for typos other than for our permanent record here on the blog. Here are some observation notes – Heading 2 looks good on my iphone but was too big in my gmail. Thumbnail pics are better for smart phones and don’t look too bad in the email or on the web. Initial logo pic is good.

Wonder if i can add sermon links for the week and sermon note download links. I know I can just link the page. That might be best. Wonder if I can create a template?

Would Lisa be willing to do this on Mondays then I can check it and add what I want on Tuesday mornings then publish?

Our Ministry Center is located at 2510 West Lincoln Ave in Olivia, MN. To learn more about us you can visit us online at www.sharinggodsgrace.com

Just doing a test to see if this format would work well for a weekly newsletter.

If you subscribe to my blog no need to keep reading. This is just a bunch of filler to see how it looks when emailed out. You can read it if you want or email me to comment about how it ends up looking in your email box. Thanks and I hope to get to writing again soon!

We could paste the weekly bulletin announcements here along with any other announcements made on Sunday that were not in the bulletin…logo5v2

  • GYM tonight at 5:30 at the Ministry Center.  Next Week we will be having a skating party at the Stadther’s house.  Please bring snacks to share.
  • Challenge Registration form and $100 deposit due January 31.  Please contact Katie or Brent if you need a form.
  • We would like to get a picture of all members and attenders for our new directory. Family pictures will be taken today after service and next week after service.   See Linda Stadther if you have any questions.
  • SAVE THE DATE FOR: A Day Set Apart For Women, Saturday, March 5, 2016,  9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
  • GU is in need of 3 additional teachers Starting in January (attendance is increasing!! Praise God for these little ones  🙂 )  Please prayerfully consider this important role of teaching only 1 Sunday a month.  Contact Juli Kjorness 320-522-0687 for more information.
  • Just a reminder that we are trying something new at the start of this year.  On Thursday Nights we will clean the church at 6:30 pm and afterwards have a time of prayer until about 8 pm.  So anytime you have a free Thursday Night please feel free to join us. Thank you all for the cleaning you have provided in the past couple of years!

CCClogoCLRI would also be able to add a blog segment to the newsletter.

Wondering how the images will look.

Excited to think about camp this summer.

Also have a wedding to plan. (:

Sorry for rambling for those of you who actually subscribe to my blog.

That is enough for now. Now to publish and see what happens! Life Groups are how we help each other faithfully follow Jesus as our One True King on the Journey of life together as He calls us to…
Experience Grace
Practice Community
and Be the Church

Welcome to Grace!

 

Until next time… FOLLOW THE KING!!!   ~DRBOBF

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The Spiritual Discipline of Not Being Negative

maxresdefault“Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” Ephesians 4:29 NIV

“Go a day without saying anything negative.” Really?! An entire day?! 24 back-to-back hours?!

That was an exercise in one of my tools I am using to strengthen my own spiritual disciplines. The current discipline is living a life of holiness – Since the One who called you is holy, be holy in all you do. For the Scripture says, ‘You are to be holy, for I am holy.'” ~ 1 Peter 1:15-16 the VOICE

And then I receive this devotional today from a former physics professor at Iowa State University that was my spiritual coach during a very difficult time in ministry several years back…

“It seems in my genes to notice problems, inconsistencies. A strength as a physicist and researcher. But it can also be a weakness (as my wife notes!) when I tend to be overly negative and critical. This is especially destructive for relationships.”

Man can I relate.

Thank You Jesus for open eyes that see my sin as sin today. And thank You Jesus for setting me free and sending the Holy Spirit to give me the power to submit my life and my heart to You in humility that I might receive grace. And thank You Abba Father for the grace.

Welcome to Grace!

 

Until next time… FOLLOW THE KING!!!   ~DRBOBF

 

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God’s Heart in the Lord’s Prayer

LordsPrayerPosterSMALL_900“Our Father in Heaven” is the beginning of a famous prayer. I am still amazed at funerals and various other settings where I hear this phrase uttered how many people know these words and the rest that follow. There is something familiar and comforting about them. And yet, what do they mean? What is at the heart of this prayer? There are lots of books and articles and commentaries on the subject. And I am not proposing anything new. But I am suggesting we slow down and let the words speak for themselves.

At Grace this past Sunday we started a new summer sermon series on the Heart of God in the Lord’s Prayer. We preach out of the NIV translation and give away copies of the same so we read it together out of that translation today. In fact, I even asked folks to stand to receive the Word. It was hard to read since that was not the version I memorized as a kid nor does it end the same! Check it out here!

The prayer that Jesus said “this, then, is how you should pray” begins with “Our Father in Heaven.” Wow – OUR Father! Not some God in the sky, but my Father. And the original word used here would be the same today as “Daddy” or “Papa” or “Poppy” or some other similar word. Picture a 4-5 year old asking for their father. Use that word. Now you are getting close to how to begin to pray to the God of the Universe. And it is there that we stop… I stop…

Awestruck. Awesome. Amazing. I am talking with the God of the Universe. And HE IS LISTENING! Like a good father. He WANTS to hear what insignificant lil’ ol’ me has to say. “I want this. My friend needs this. I feel…” And yet though I feel insignificant, I am not insignificant nor are my words. He actually stops to listen. (Unlike me sometimes when my kids have questions.) So do I stop to hear His answer?

The series will end towards the end of the summer reflecting on our prayers in light of the Lord’s Prayer. But for now, I will just focus on my Father. Jesus says that is a great place to start.

Until next time… FOLLOW THE KING!!!   ~DRBOBF

 

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4… 3…. 2….. 1…………. Rest

trellis_20754_mdSome of you have asked to have a recap of the idea of REST talked about in last Sunday’s message as well as the “trellis” (see image) I shared as a possible structure to help you with your growing walk with Christ as you seek to spend more time with Him and REST in Him and His inerrant Word.

Teaching from Hebrews 4:12 (Actually Hebrews 3:1-4:13) we came up with the idea and acronym for how to REST in the Scriptures, the Word of God…

REST in the Scriptures…
R – READ them! – just do it!
E – ENGAGE them – ask what caught my attention?
S – STOP to listen to them – give the Word of God time to speak and sink and soak
T – TUNE my life to what the Scriptures are saying

Then I gave the trellis for which to consider letting these grow in you…

4-3-2-1 REST – Read, Engage, STOP, Tune – emphasis on STOP to give God room to speak into your life
4 – minutes every day – try to stop and pause and reflect on whatever you read that day to let it speak and sink and soak
3 – hours every week – the teaching I received on Sabbath Rest – an intentional longer period of time with God
2 – days each month (1 Sunday, 1 other) – make sure you have one Sunday a month where you are not busy serving at church but can sit and receive
1 – week (partial?) each year – a time of retreat to ask God what is really important in your life season right now

So that was my challenge – focus on the STOPPING of life to hear from God in order to have the life and energy to serve God wholeheartedly. What have you got to lose? Perhaps, you have everything to gain…

Until next time… FOLLOW THE KING!!!   ~DRBOBF

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Happy Birthday Jesus!

IMG_0437Well, it has been far too long since my last blog post, but after tonight’s Happy Birthday Jesus party, I just had to pause and reflect for a few moments…

If you were here tonight, you can reflect with me on what a fun and great evening of food and activities and celebration as a Church Family. If you weren’t able to make it, you really missed out. Enough said.

I was told that we had not done something like this in our ten year history as a church and it was really enjoyed by all. A HUGE THANK YOU to all the volunteers and youth that made tonight possible. You did a great job and I just know Jesus was smiling tonight. (:

As a family you could check out one of several activity stations from making cookies and ornaments for your family to making Christmas cards for those in jail right here in our own city to hopefully be delivered on Christmas Day evening. There were Christmas carols sung by all. The kids performed a Christmas program telling the story of Jesus birth. One of my personal favorites was the build-your-own nuts and bolts nativity.

Tonight, as I finish my “work day”, I am filled with HOPE. I belong to and help to lead a Church that is filled with people of great faith. And I see them passing it on to their kids. We have a youth group that loves Jesus as individuals, and as a whole. That gives me HOPE. I am filled with PEACE. I belong to and help to lead a Church whose Head is the Prince of Peace. People here have conflicts among themselves and others, but they turn to Christ, the Scriptures and then to each other to work things out. And those that don’t are told by those who do that they need to. And that brings PEACE. And I am filled with JOY. Mostly today because of my long and deep reflection lately on the return of Jesus and how that brings REAL JOY. But even tonight, to see God’s family enJOYing one another and fellowshiping in Him, I think God felt JOY too. Our church knows how to have fun. I pray that those who come to Grace find it a real JOY to serve God by serving others.

With that, I sign off for the evening and I will seek to write more later after the new Jail Worship Service ministry launches on Christmas Day. Until then, I think I will rearrange my nuts and bolts nativity and reflect one last time on God being born in a manger – Emmanuel – God With Us. Merry Christmas! and Come Lord Jesus…

 

Until next time… FOLLOW THE LAMB!!!  ~DRBOBF

(I usually end with Follow the King, but if you were in church today, 12/15/13, you know why I wrote Follow the Lamb. If you weren’t, you can listen here…)

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Sabbath Killers

I was really impacted by this article so I will link it below as well as simply insert the website. Be spurred on to Sabbath as I was…

7 Sabbath Killers

7 Sabbath killers   by Mark Driscoll

The Sabbath is not a mandate for Christians, but it’s still a good idea, a gift from God to enjoy. Yet there are plenty of ways we sabotage the Sabbath rest God intends for us.
The Sabbath is a gift from God, which means Satan and our own sin will stand in the way of our enjoyment. No matter what the Sabbath looks like for you, you’re likely to experience a few of these obstacles along the way:
1. A poor work ethic
If you don’t do your work during the week, you will end up doing your work on your day off. If you are disorganized, lazy, late, or prone to procrastinate, your day off will get devoured by a bunch of tasks that should be done already.
2. Religious rules
Let the Holy Spirit guide and direct your Sabbath. Religious people want to remove the Holy Spirit and replace him with their rules, but their rules never work. We are not to be filled with rules; we’re to be filled with the Spirit who helps us to obey the word of God. Everyone’s day off is going to look a little different. If you find something that works for you, you can make rules for yourself, but you can’t impose your rules on anybody else—because you didn’t write the Bible.
3. Observing a Sabbath day without a Sabbath heart
Sometimes you get to your day off, but you’re still anxious, stressed, sleepless, and unable to sit down and enjoy it. Your heart isn’t able to Sabbath. Perhaps your identity is in your work, so when you’re not working you lose all sense of value. Or perhaps you need to find away to take your thoughts captive. I always carry a notebook, and if something comes to mind on my Sabbath day, I write it down so that it’s out of my head and I can get to it later.
4. A pharaoh
Our pharaoh today tends to fit in our pocket. One of the great Sabbath-killers is the smartphone: ever-present, dominating our whole life, interrupting at all hours, and demanding our constant attention with e-mails, social media, articles, calls, texts, and more. Technology will kill your Sabbath if you don’t establish some boundaries. If your phone does not Sabbath, your soul cannot Sabbath.
5. Not planning your Sabbath—in pencil
Have you ever made it to your day off only to find you have no plan and no idea how you want to use it? The day disappears before you even begin to enjoy it. Or maybe you’re more likely to over-plan and turn your Sabbath into another day filled with tasks. Plan your Sabbath, but plan it in pencil. Allow a little flexibility and spontaneity, and make adjustments as you go.
6. Resting from your work instead of resting for your work
Work is not sinful. Before sin ever entered the world, “The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it” (Gen. 1:15). It wasn’t until after the Fall that work became toilsome. In some way, a fruitful Sabbath must prepare you and energize you for the work God has called you to do during the other six days of the week.
7. Stimulants instead of Sabbath
We sabotage our rest when we use stimulants instead of Sabbath. Rather than taking a break, we consume coffee, carbs, candy, energy drinks, and soft drinks all day. Then we go home stressed, we watch TV, we surf the Internet, and some will drink into the evening. The result is a population full of caffeinated, drunk, grumpy, phone-answering, Sabbath-violating wrecks. We call it “America.”
On this point, it’s worthwhile to consider God’s pattern at creation, which includes the refrain, “And there was evening and there was morning” to mark each day (Gen. 1). According to the Bible, a new day starts a sundown. Your day doesn’t begin when the alarm goes off; it starts with a healthy dinner and a good night’s sleep to replenish you for the daytime ahead.
The average person needs 8–9 hours of sleep and gets much less than that. Those who cannot get time to sleep because they have too much work are forgetting that part of the work God has assigned to them is sleep.
Remember the Sabbath
Look at your whole life. Seek to arrange your days in such a way that allows you to get things done, and make sure that one of those things is resting in God, enjoying time with him, using the life he has given you, and being with the people he has surrounded you with. That is the heart of the Sabbath.
Are you prone to kill yourself by working too hard? Or do you avoid work as much as possible? In which direction is the Holy Spirit calling you to repent? A Sabbath cannot save you—only Jesus can do that—but there is great wisdom in working hard for six days and then enjoying a true day off as he did while on the earth.

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Scrabble

IMG_0263It all started on Wednesday, April 10 at 5:00 am – the monthly Prayer Vigil – from 5am to midnight.

And it all started with one word… SAVIOR… do you see it in the photo on the right? This prayer station during our all day prayer vigil was entitled “Scrabble Words.” Here is what the station said…

“How have you experienced God’s presence in your life? What words come to mind as you reflect on who/what/how God is for you? Use the letters here to create and meditate upon the words that come to mind. Feel free to connect your words to those of others (Scrabble-style!) as a symbol of how we each have experiences of God to share with one another.”

And what you see now is what was there at midnight! Way to go Grace! What a fun station and what a great picture!

Savior… King… Lord… Strength… Grace… Hope… Love… Godly… Joy… Faithful… Radical… Peace…

Ahhhhh… Refreshing… I am feeling a sense of Shalom… These are some great words to meditate on. I need these today. Thank you people of Grace Community Church for coming and praying for so many things. Thank you for sharing how you have experienced God’s presence in your life with me and with everyone else. Thank you for your faithfulness…

Until next time… FOLLOW THE KING!!!   ~DRBOBF

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