Secret Church Simulcast

SIMULCAST with David Platt (author of Radical)
Good Friday -  April 18, 20146:00 pm to 12:00am (6 hours)
First Baptist Church, Red Bud, 1445 W. Market St., Red Bud, IL

 The event is called Secret Church, in honor of our persecuted brother and sisters around the world who gather to worship in secret, often for many hours at a time.

TOPIC:  The Cross and Everyday Life
From the moment we wake up in the morning to the moment we lie down to sleep at night, how does the death of Christ on the cross transform every single detail of our day? How does the cross compel daily disciplines like prayer and Bible reading or a regular routine of fasting and worship? How does the cross change the way we view our jobs and vocations throughout the day as well as the way we rest and relax at the end of the day? What, if any, unique effect does the cross have on the ways we spend our time, set our priorities, make our decisions, and love our neighbors? How does the cross change the way we view food and exercise, sports and entertainment in this world? The Bible says, “Whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31). So how do we do that? And how does the cross of Christ inevitably enable us to do that? During this Secret Church, as we explore the implications of the death of Christ for our daily lives, we will discover the exhilarating joy that is found in following Jesus to the glory of God on a moment-by-moment, day-by-day basis.

There is no cost for this event.  There will be three 15 minute breaks throughout the evening.  Please bring snacks to share.  Beverages will be provided.  We’ll set these up in the Coffee Nook.  Simulcast will be viewed in the sanctuary.

To insure a Study Guide
(per couple) you must be signed up by Thur, Apr 3.
  Those signing up after that are encouraged to attend but there’s a chance they may not receive a Study Guide.   You may sign up by calling the church during office hours
(282-3562) Office Hours: M-T-Th 9a-1p and Wed 9a-4p

A Note to Parents: Childcare will not be provided but you are welcome to bring your children.  (Children get registered only if they will be participating in the event.)

If You Love Me

“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:34-35, ESV)

Several months ago, Todd pointed out a song to me that has been percolating in my head ever since. Derek Webb sings about what it means to follow Christ with the brothers and sisters with whom God has called us to walk. The chorus is printed below.

I haven’t come for only you

But for My people to pursue

You cannot care for Me with no regard for her

If you love Me you will love the church

I pray that as these truths are repeated again and again, they would one day become part of who we are. That through covenanting together and reminding each other of the promises that we have made, we will see that there can be no disconnect between loving Jesus and loving his bride. If we love Him, we will love the church.

I’m looking forward to worshiping together, to renewing our promises to each other, and to eating turkey together.

Blessings,

Ben

Eating Together

I love Taco Tuesday. As busy as the week gets at our house, we try diligently to have a family meal together every Tuesday. I ask each of our kids and Laura what their favorite and least favorite part of the day was. We communicate with each other and hear how the week is going. That time is precious to check the heartbeat of our family and to build better community among six people with increasingly crazy schedules. Family dinners are very important.

Eating together build unity in the body of Christ as well. Throughout the New Testament a high priority is placed on believers building community by eating together. As a matter of fact when Jesus desired to build a reminder of his work into the life of the church, He chose a together meal as the best way to demonstrate the work he has done in our lives. Family dinners are very important.

If I had my druthers we would eat together like this every week. We come from struggles, victories, trials, and triumphs, but we don’t always know where each other are coming from. What better time to find out then at a together meal? Come share in this meal with us. The meal of the bread and cup, that is expanded upon by turkey and dressing, with potatoes. Let us give thanks together, and give thanks that God has brought us together. Sunday Family Dinner, All invited.

HAVE YOU, ARE YOU, WILL YOU?

A Love Challenge

Is it possible for a heart to be heavy and hopeful at the same time. It must be so, for mine is… Heavy in that it seems that again and again we are beset by the same sins, hindered by the same selfishness, and hurt by the same hurts. Hopeful in the gospel’s power to change us, to “transform” us as Paul shared.. more into the image of Christ and away from the besetting sins that harm our gospel witness and hobble our effectiveness. I came across this challenge and wanted to share it with you.

HAVE YOU, ARE YOU, WILL YOU?

10 Love Challenges that translate the sometimes nebulous idea of love into very practical, do-able actions. In some ways each action might not seem very much; each challenge has only one fairly quick and easy action per month. However, when multiplied by 100 or 200 Christians, the cumulative effect on your whole congregation could be huge.

Love Challenge 1: Pray for one family

What better way to love someone than to pray for them? As well as praying generally for your church, pray for specific and special needs in your church family, and for one other family in particular. Use the church directory or membership list to select one family to pray for regularly in the next 30 days.

Love Challenge 2: Speak to one person

We all have our favorite people and our favorite places to sit and stand in church. Why not sit somewhere different, exit through a different door, or stand in a different place and risk meeting a different person! Just once a month, do something different that will make you speak to someone you don’t usually speak to.

Love Challenge 3: Encourage one person

You appreciate many people in your church family, but have you ever told them that? Have you ever highlighted one of their gifts or graces and told them how thankful to God you are for them? Again, not asking for a lot here, but just once a month, go out of your way to find one person and encourage them.

Love Challenge 4: Carry one burden

Speak to someone who is suffering in your church and ask them how they are. It may be someone who is ill, someone struggling with a wayward child, someone who’s struggling financially. As you listen to their story, express concern, and feel sympathy, a strange thing happens – the sufferer’s pain reduces slightly as you take some of it into your own mind, heart, and soul. Although you walk away heavier, they walk away lighter.

Love Challenge 5: Visit one person

Perhaps start with the seniors, the sick, and those with special needs, but select one person in your church to visit once in the next 30 days. If you can’t do it in person, you can “visit” by phone.

Love Challenge 6: Give one gift

Share your abundance with those who lack. There are people and families in your church who cannot afford to buy a book, go out for a meal, go on vacation, or even buy all the groceries. $10 gets them a book, $20 gets a couple a meal at Applebees, $50 gets them a day camping, $100 would make a huge difference to their family grocery budget. Give as the Lord as prospered you.

Love Challenge 7: Forgive one person

Is there someone you’ve fallen out with? A strained relationship? Whether you are the offender, they are, or you both are, make one attempt to reconcile with them. If you can’t make progress in reconciliation, at least speak to them, express interest in them, and show affection towards them.

Love Challenge 8: Welcome one person

Different people visit your church every month – vacationers, friends and family of church members, strangers, seekers, church-hoppers, etc. Don’t leave it to others to welcome them. Take the initiative, go out of your way to show that you’re glad they came, exchange contact details, etc.

Love Challenge 9: Share one meal

Once a month invite someone, a single, a couple, or a family to share a meal with you in your home. Don’t make it fancy or complicated (or you won’t do it again) but simple, informal, and do-able. The focus should be the fellowship not the food.

Love Challenge 10: Relegate one preference There are some things in church life and the Christian life that are a matter of biblical principle. These things we cannot let go of, we cannot demote, we cannot dismiss. Other things are a matter of personal preference – clothing, hobbies, sports, education choices, etc. When we make our preference equivalent to principles we inevitably erect barriers between us and others, we put others down and puff ourselves up. Search your life for one preference that you’ve turned into a principle, relegate it, let it go, and watch your relationships improve.- From an Article by David Murray

Longing for us to walk in Love as we are called,

Benjamin