GATHER: Unique and Valued, Part of God’s Family

We had such an incredible GATHER this morning! Our theme was the family of God, and we featured a story and song time and heard multiple women sing and share about what the family of God has meant to them. I loved that all generations were represented too! There were tears from us all, and there were also lots of laughs, and we ended with a puzzle piece ornament craft that says “unique & valued, part of God’s family.”

As Romans 12:3-8 says, because of Jesus’ gift of grace, we belong to one another, and we’ve all been given gifts to build up the family of God. Each of us are a unique and valuable part, and we aren’t a complete puzzle without every person! It’s so important for everyone to be part of the family of God, Continue reading “GATHER: Unique and Valued, Part of God’s Family”

Advent: A Season of Waiting for Jesus

I loved getting to share about Advent in church this morning and what God is doing in our family lately. I LOVE Advent, and our family enjoys doing a Jesus tree every year, where we get to see Jesus in every story of the Bible, and how the Bible isn’t just a bunch of little, disjointed, moralistic stories, it’s actually one big story, the story of God and how Jesus rescues His people. Jesus is the true and better fulfillment of every promise and person in the Bible, and I’m so pumped my kids gets to learn this at a young age, because I wasn’t raised in the church, and didn’t hear this stuff until later in life.

Advent is a season of waiting for the celebration of the birth of Jesus & the return of Jesus- where He will finally come and wrap up His story with the total restoration of all things that are broken, putting them right again like He first created them in the Garden.

We all have things we are waiting on God to answer, to redeem and restore. This is why I love Advent, it’s an intentional time to point our hearts back to Jesus in these tensions. Continue reading “Advent: A Season of Waiting for Jesus”

Immanuel, “God With Us”

Immanuel means “God with us.” I’ve been thinking a lot about His name today in my unusually quiet house. They could have called Him anything, but there’s something so special and so personal about His name meaning God with us. He’s a God who willingly entered into our messy world, His arrival announced within the four walls of a smelly barn. He’s a God who chose to be present in our pain, and fix it with the touch of His hands and the spit of His mouth. He’s a God who saw into the souls of the people society casts aside. He’s a God who came to quietly serve and love, not loudly assert His God-status authority. I don’t think any human writer ever would have thought this kind of story up.

We are in the season of Advent, of waiting for Christmas, the celebration of the long-prophesied birth of the Messiah, the Savior of the world. Now that we’re on the other side celebrating His birth and victory on the cross, we still wait for Him to return again to make all things right, just like He originally made it in the Garden. We wait. We wait for the festivities on Christmas Day and we wait on God with unanswered prayers. We feel the tension of the already here/not yet promises in Jesus. Continue reading “Immanuel, “God With Us””