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Blog Archives: February 2018

Sola Gratia - Grace Alone

February 28, 2018
Tom Breeden
I’m not sure I could have been more excited for Black Panther. I’m already a comic book nerd to start with, but this movie had some serious hype behind it. In fact, it was so hyped up that I was getting nervous. What if the movie couldn’t live up to the hype? I started managing my expectations so I wouldn’t be disappointed. A friend and I made plans to go on the Friday night after it released. We picked a theater that let us reserve our seats. We identified where we would meet and when. Our plan was all set…except for one detail my friend ...

Word of the Week

February 28, 2018
Don Ward
Word of the week: Joyous Sorrow What is a joyous sorrow? Doesn’t that sound like calling a seven foot tall man “shorty?”  When do we have a joyous sorrow? In general, we have a joyous sorrow when the hopes we have in Christ mix with the sorrows that are a part of this life. I feel the pain of living in a fallen world, but I’m comforted by the realities of the joy I have now in Christ, and the ultimate joy that is coming in the next world. It was my blessed duty to officiate at the funeral of Anna Belle Deal, the mother of Jeff Deal and ...

Church Membership Glorifies God

February 22, 2018
Don Ward
We continue our series on membership in the local church, and the blessings of having that formal connection with another group of believers. Church membership “glorifies” God - that’s our topic today. To glorify someone is to bring honor and fame to them. When the church of Jesus Christ in her local expression is fulfilling her biblical calling and destiny, there are four ways (at least) that she, the church, glorifies God. I’m sure there are many others. 1) Living out the “One Anothers” The New Testament is full of commands for ...

Word of the Week

February 22, 2018
Don Ward
Word of the Week: Prayer This past Tuesday night was memorable to me because of prayer. The elders of our church had their regular meeting, and the agenda was light. We decided to start a new practice of praying for member families at all of our regular meetings. The names have been divided in to 11 blocks (since we usually don’t meet in July). Several of the elders themselves came to the meeting with pressing needs - loss, grief, fear, troubles. So, we ended our meeting in prayer for one another, and for families in our church. Before we ...

Church Membership Matures Us

February 15, 2018
Sean Smith
As we continue our series on church membership we will look more closely at how church membership not only unites, humbles, and protects us but also how it matures as believers. We have seen through Tom and Don’s previous blog posts how church membership is not only beneficial for us as individuals, but also benefits body of Christ. So, with that in mind, we are going to look at the question how does church membership make us more mature? The answer could be many things, but one of the main things that comes to my mind is accountability....

Word of the Week

February 15, 2018
Don Ward
Word of the Week: Confess Confess is an interesting word. Law enforcement wants to get a suspect to confess what they did. We encourage believers in Jesus to confess their sins to one another. The biblical work in the Greek which is translated “confess” means to “say the same things”, or to acknowledge or accept something (I left some nerdy stuff at the bottom for some of you.). I’m thinking about confess today because Sunday our newest member met with the elders to confess Christ. He announced and declared that he believes Jesus Christ ...

Church Membership Protects Us

February 07, 2018
Tom Breeden
Nobody ever wants to go to court. Lawsuits and trials are messy, expensive, and painful. They are loaded down with red-tape and procedure. As much as no one ever wants to go to court, there are times that we have to. When a serious crime has been committed, a trial might be the only way to prevent further offense. The threat of a lawsuit can restrain people and organizations from otherwise harmful behavior. We don’t want courts, but we need them. We need them to protect us. We’d like to hope the church would be better than that, but ...

Word of the Week

February 06, 2018
Tom Breeden
Word of the Week: Survey One of our five-year goals as a church is to serve our community more by identifying a couple of places we can invest deeply in. God has called together a remarkably gifted congregation here at Grace and we want to unleash those gifts. So here’s the plan: 1. We want to identify the gifts in our congregation. What needs are we equipped to meet and which ones do we need to leave to others? 2. We want to organize similar gifts into teams. They might be hospitality related gifts, construction skills, or ...

Church Membership Humbles Us

February 01, 2018
Don Ward
Last week Sean Smith introduced our series on church membership. This week we consider the ways church membership humbles us. Indeed, to join a church is an act of humility. It is a time when you admit you are no longer a “free agent.” You now stand for Christ and stand together with a group of Christians as you grow in Christ.  Here are four thoughts about church membership and humility: When you join Grace Community Church, one of the first things you do is make a spectacular admission of sin and failure.  Right in front of the elders, ...

Word of the Week

February 01, 2018
Don Ward
Word of the Week: Various Various: different from one another; of different kinds or sorts. I see God at work around us in many ways. Various is just the right description. The youth teams from many nearby local churches managed to attract over 200 students to a big event in Greene County this Sunday. That’s impressive in so many ways, starting with the fact that all these diverse churches worked together so well. There are smaller, more personal ways I see God working that are also impressive, although smaller and quieter. A member ...