I love this 60° weather! The sound of birds singing, the warmth of the sun and the extended daylight really starts to change the attitude of our hearts and minds in anticipation of spring. Likewise, the sounds of laughter, warm wishes of others, and an extended hand or heart really brings joy & hope to our lives and that of others. With spring & Easter approaching, a sense of renewal and love abounds! Jesus said in Mark 12 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” One of the sayings we live by at Rock Church Ministries is to “love God, love others & do good.” When we live and love the way Jesus commands us, our hearts are right with God.
As we come into this new season of refreshing and renewal, I wanted to share some of the exciting things that we have been working on at Celebrate Recovery (CR) on Tuesday evenings. Over the past few months, our CR leadership has been teaching that we must get right with God and others by taking an “inventory” of our own lives. This is a powerful process of reflection on the hurts, habits and hang-ups that we all have just from living out our lives in a broken world. This process requires a heart that is loving, bold and trusting enough to share, bear, and engage with a mentor or accountability partner/group who encourages along the way. In working through this, we’ve been learning things about ourselves and God, forgiving ourselves and others and offering and receiving healing. See friends, the battlefield of our minds is where the enemy loves to wage war (with his home field advantage of isolation and lies). God does not want us to go into battle alone or undefended. We are intended to live together, in community. He wants us to fight wisely by sharing with a trusted friend, naming and/or writing down our struggles and tackling them in our own arena (our home field) in truth. With the help of His Spirit, His Word and His people - we will win! If you are interested in learning more about how God is working at CR, the best place to be on Tuesday nights, feel free to reach out to Diana Teel or me using the email links on our names.
A few other exciting happenings we want everyone to be aware of have to do with our Rock Missions Ministry. First, we want to keep our Texas Mission Team lifted up in prayer as the advance teams are already headed out and the full team follows behind on Saturday. Please keep them in your prayers for good health, great weather and even greater opportunities to build new relationships as they serve down in Texas.
Second, we will be preparing for our next Honduras mission trip and will be hosting an information session on Sunday, March 26th after the 11:11 service (so around 12:45). At this session, some of the members of our Honduras mission leadership will share insights and stories from our last trip and some vision around where our ministry in Honduras is headed. We also want to see and talk with those who may be interested in joining or supporting the team in the future. Please mark your calendars because we would love to see you there!
Finally, as many of you may know our daughter Lily has been out on the mission field for almost 6 months now. Rachel and I will be leaving for the Philippines to visit her on March 6th. We will only have 5 short days of visiting and doing ministry with her, but after 6 long months, we are so excited! We know she would be greatly encouraged to hear from home and we would LOVE to take any letters or notes of encouragement to her that you would like to send with us. She still has over 3 months out in the field following our visit so we’d love to bring some extra encouragement from all of you to her when we go. We will need letters and notes no later than SUNDAY MARCH 5TH.
That’s all for this week. As you go through the rest of your week, I hope you are as excited as I am by the renewal of spring that is all around us. Join us this week as we continue to study the Book of James in Plaistow at either 9:45 or 11:11, and don’t forget the morning study of James that is also in Plaistow at 9:45. I’m certain God will have something special in store for us!
P.J. (Pastor Jon)