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Reconciled to God

Posted April 25, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Underpinning today’s passage is the story that tells us that something had gone horribly wrong between us and God.... Keep Reading

Two Realities

Posted April 24, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Because the new is here, the old has gone. The old may remain for a beat or two, but it’s gone just as surely and securely as if it had already been eradicated.... Keep Reading

The New is Here

Posted April 21, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Celebrate this. Sing it. Shout it. Write it on your walls. Christ has made us new.... Keep Reading

A New Point of View

Posted April 20, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The trickle-down effects of our relationship with Christ continue to unfold in today’s passage. ... Keep Reading

We died

Posted April 19, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Death in all it’s forms ... Keep Reading

Live For

Posted April 18, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Love is not a finite resource, but our priorities do shape the way we express our love. ... Keep Reading

Talkin' 'bout a Resurrection

Posted April 14, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

They knew their message would seem like nonsense. But they shared it anyways.... Keep Reading

Searching for new

Posted April 13, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

If Jesus can come back from the dead, what is impossible for him?... Keep Reading

Angelic Guidance

Posted April 12, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Why doesn’t God make this extraordinary circumstance more ordinary?... Keep Reading

Time to wonder

Posted April 11, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Taking time to wonder doesn’t come naturally to everyone. And it’s tough to do in our frenetic, fast-paced, get-things-done culture. But it has an impact.... Keep Reading

Within Expectations

Posted April 10, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

What they found at the tomb didn’t align with their expectations. The tomb was opened and the body was gone.... Keep Reading

The cross shows

Posted April 7, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

You are dearly loved by God. And he proved it on the cross.... Keep Reading

More than Reform

Posted April 6, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The place where prayer and action meet is a place where we can connect with God.... Keep Reading

Not (Just) a Teacher

Posted April 5, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus did a great deal of teaching … but his teaching wasn’t what he was known for in his lifetime, what he was remembered for by his disciples, or what from his life has had the most significant impact on the world.... Keep Reading

About a Revolution

Posted April 4, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus’ revolution is marked by Jesus’ character. His love, patience, compassion, and mercy will come stamped on his every action. He’s delightfully and maddeningly consistent.... Keep Reading

Difficult Decisions

Posted April 3, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Reflecting on your own decision-making process might help you to connect more deeply with Jesus in this pivotal moment in his story.... Keep Reading

A Connecting Church

Posted March 31, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The church is more than a Sunday morning gathering for music, sermonizing, and donuts. It’s bigger than us. ... Keep Reading

Going to look for Saul

Posted March 30, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Who are the great partners that God has brought into your life ... Keep Reading

Parachuting in

Posted March 29, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Barnabas’ posture had a tremendous impact on his experience and on the way others experienced him. We’re at our most healthy when we cultivate a similar posture.... Keep Reading

Outsiders reaching outsiders

Posted March 28, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

It took outsiders to reach outsiders.... Keep Reading

Disrupting Default Segregation

Posted March 27, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Ethnic segregation, socioeconomic segregation, political segregation … left to our own devices we’ll surround ourselves exclusively with people who look, spend, and think just like us.... Keep Reading

Small Faithfulness

Posted March 24, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

What might God do with your faithfulness?... Keep Reading

Talk to God about it

Posted March 23, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The Lord of all the cosmos has chosen to treat you as a friend ... Keep Reading

Underestimating Jesus

Posted March 22, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

This gap between who Jesus really is and who people perceive him to be shows up for all of us.... Keep Reading

ME

Posted March 21, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus isn’t just alive on the other side of the cross and the empty tomb, he’s present in the lives of his people. ... Keep Reading

Prayer for the persecuted church

Posted March 20, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Opponents to God’s work in the world today can appear in various forms. Some come equipped with little more than snide comments and teasing. Others carry knives, bombs, and the hammer of unjust laws.... Keep Reading

Prayers of Protection

Posted March 17, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Turn away and pray and it will be okay. ... Keep Reading

Radical Reorientation

Posted March 16, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The Lord isn’t done with our transformation at the moment of our initial conversion. Every day we follow him he works in our hearts and souls to change the way we think, love and live.... Keep Reading

The Light Wins

Posted March 15, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

No one is too lost to be found. No one is too stuck to be freed. No one is too evil to be loved.... Keep Reading

Contested Space

Posted March 14, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Every inch of ground gained by the kingdom of God has to be taken from other little imposter kingdoms.... Keep Reading

Pay closer attention

Posted March 13, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

The miracles earned him a hearing.... Keep Reading

Ready for Opportunities

Posted March 10, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

How do we go from being unprepared to being prepared? ... Keep Reading

Cross-cultural connection

Posted March 9, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God’s power is put on full display when his followers cross racial, ethnic and cultural lines with the news and love of Jesus.... Keep Reading

Direction without details

Posted March 8, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Philip will get more instructions later in the passage. All he’s given to start with is a direction. But that was enough.... Keep Reading

A Dose of Joy

Posted March 7, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

In a world that’s clearly not the way it’s supposed to be, God has intervened.... Keep Reading

Disruptive Forces

Posted March 6, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God is wildly available to us in these seasons of disruption.... Keep Reading

The Source of Celebration

Posted March 3, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The arc of the universe bends toward celebration.... Keep Reading

Strength and Joy

Posted March 2, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Take some time today to meditate on the strength-giving joy of the Lord.... Keep Reading

A Noble Cedar Kind of Church

Posted March 1, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The Lord’s work in our hearts is to turn us back toward community in healthy and generous ways.... Keep Reading

From Mourning to Celebration

Posted February 28, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The goodness of the Lord gives us a reason to celebrate.... Keep Reading

After the end

Posted February 27, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

What do you do at the end of a great, good project? We’ve talked about building and rebuilding families, careers, homes, churches, and communities. But what happens next?... Keep Reading

CC + GG = RR

Posted February 24, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

If we were going to draw it into something like a formula, it might look like this: Committed Community + Generous God = Remarkable Results.... Keep Reading

The Dung Gate

Posted February 23, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

The whole community is blessed when someone is willing to step in and do the work no one else wants to do.... Keep Reading

Women at work

Posted February 22, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Those daughters of Shallum, those strong women, worked as hard as all of the rest of the men. And their work was noted both by Nehemiah and by God.... Keep Reading

Getting your hands dirty

Posted February 21, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

There is an intimate connection between your willingness to get your hands dirty and your ability to bless people.... Keep Reading

The Lord notices

Posted February 20, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

Your particular part in God’s good work has not gone unnoticed by him.... Keep Reading

Gracious Hand

Posted February 17, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Nehemiah’s testimony about God’s gracious hand at work for him gave the people the faith they needed to actively move into the future.... Keep Reading

We and Us

Posted February 16, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

“We” creates space for “us.”... Keep Reading

Telling trouble

Posted February 15, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Sometimes you need someone to tell you when you’re in trouble.... Keep Reading

Due Diligence

Posted February 14, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

A patient due diligence process prepares us to step into the work we’ve been given to do in a knowledgeable, prepared way.... Keep Reading

Quiet Start

Posted February 13, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We live in an age that struggles with secrecy.... Keep Reading

The Place for Planning

Posted February 10, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

As people of faith, we don’t have to be afraid of planning. The same God who speeds and catches us when we take our leaps of faith can inspire and guide us when we plan.... Keep Reading

In the beat

Posted February 9, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The active, rough-and-tumble, dangerous phase of the Jerusalem rebuilding project was peppered with prayer. Connecting with God in prayer filled the beats between moments of action. ... Keep Reading

What is it you want?

Posted February 8, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We often are only in touch with the surface of our desires. We rarely dive into their depths.... Keep Reading

Fear and Faith

Posted February 7, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Fear is not the absence of faith. Even the faithful feel fear. Fear can serve us well, pushing us onto the path toward wisdom. But fear makes a terrible master.... Keep Reading

Positioned Perfectly

Posted February 6, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

We believe that the Lord still does this: he positions people perfectly to pursue their destiny. ... Keep Reading

The Basis for Our Confidence

Posted February 3, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

You also can store up for yourself a supply of conviction about the Lord’s willingness to keep his promises.... Keep Reading

A Prayer of Corporate Confession

Posted February 2, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Nehemiah’s willingness to identify himself with his broader family and community in confession positions him powerfully to lead his entire community in mission.... Keep Reading

False Bad News

Posted February 1, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The Lord is present in our lives and history, whether the news is good or bad. When his people practice prayerful engagement, they discover that their activist God is already deeply engaged: bringing restoration, resisting evil, and generating hope.... Keep Reading

People and Structures

Posted January 31, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

One of the things we love about Nehemiah’s story is that he manages to care both for people and structures. He doesn’t just have warm and fuzzy sympathetic feelings for his fellow Jews, he also cares about the state of Jerusalem’s walls.... Keep Reading

Asking the question

Posted January 30, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Choosing to care does something in our souls. The Lord works with that choice, enriches it and expands it and nourishes it. Choosing to care slips you into the center of God’s great work.... Keep Reading

Growth and Vulnerability

Posted January 27, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Life in the church brings our vulnerabilities to the surface. This is perhaps never more true than when a church is growing.... Keep Reading

The Lord's outside influence

Posted January 26, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

The Lord delights to do the seemingly impossible.... Keep Reading

One barrier-breaking example

Posted January 25, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Don’t encourage people to imitate your behavior. When they’re inspired by the Lord’s work in your life, encourage them to connect with God.... Keep Reading

The Blessing of Community

Posted January 24, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

When the Lord grows a community, when the Lord grows a church, when the Lord grows a person … the blessings spill beyond that the life of that community, church, or person.... Keep Reading

God at Work

Posted January 23, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

The political and military machinations of the world powers look like ultimate powers, but God is also at work. God’s work continues even in seasons of difficulty and uncertainty. And God’s work is the work that matters most.... Keep Reading

Good Soil

Posted January 20, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

There is good soil out there, soil that’s been prepared, hearts that are ready to hear and accept that word of the Lord. ... Keep Reading

3 Barriers

Posted January 19, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

Jesus insightfully lists 3 things that can keep the word of God from bearing fruit in your life: worries, wealth, and distraction.... Keep Reading

Prepare for trouble

Posted January 18, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Troubles and persecutions can come as a result of our faith. If we haven’t put down deep roots, our faith won’t survive.... Keep Reading

Hard Soil

Posted January 17, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The soil on the path has not been prepared to receive the seed.... Keep Reading

Reckless and Generous

Posted January 16, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God’s kingdom is marked by the reckless generosity of the king. ... Keep Reading

Particular Purpose

Posted January 13, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

How will we respond to Jesus’ great act of service? Gratitude. Shame. Joy. Confusion. Worship. So many responses are available to us.... Keep Reading

Recalculating Your Route

Posted January 12, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Will you choose to serve? This is a daily choice, a choice that goes against the grain of the world, a choice that God uses to transform us.... Keep Reading

An Examined Grumpiness

Posted January 11, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When do you find yourself feeling grumpy about the way other people talk to or about God?... Keep Reading

A "No" from God

Posted January 10, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Our prayer requests fly to God, but we can’t pretend to fully comprehend the full impact of each flap of their wings.... Keep Reading

Manipulating God

Posted January 9, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

James and John are comically transparent in their attempt to manipulate Jesus. Aren’t we all?... Keep Reading

For Seekers and Stumblers

Posted January 6, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The kingdom of heaven is available to both seekers and stumblers. Some of us searched high and low looking for a place and a community where what God wants done is done. Others of us went looking for friends, free food, and a little spiritual icing on the cake we call life and stumbled into this great and wonderful kingdom that God is bringing to fruition in our midst. God graciously receives us all into his kingdom.... Keep Reading

Worth Rearranging Your Life

Posted January 5, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

What do you consider to be so worthwhile that you’ll rearrange your life? This question can give you insight into your priorities, your dreams, and the challenges of your current life situation.... Keep Reading

Comparing and Contrasting Parables

Posted January 4, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Great engagement with the scriptures begins with good observation of the text. As you read these parables, what stands out to you?... Keep Reading

Kingdom Parables

Posted January 3, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The Kingdom of Heaven is worth it!... Keep Reading

Kingdom of Heaven

Posted January 2, 2017 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

How would you fill in this blank: “The kingdom of heaven is like _________.”?... Keep Reading

Seeking God's Kingdom

Posted December 30, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

What would happen if we all committed to seek God’s kingdom first in 2017?... Keep Reading

Your Resolutions and God's Kingdom

Posted December 29, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Every resolution you make in this new year can contain a kingdom component if you are willing to seek it out. Losing weight, reading more, decluttering, taking a vacation, calling your kids … each and every one of these can be used by our heavenly Father to advance his kingdom in our lives and in this world.... Keep Reading

Kickstart change

Posted December 28, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

This time of year many of us will ponder making resolutions to live life differently in 2017. The changes that take place in our lives might have a tremendous impact on our relationships and our participation in God’s kingdom. ... Keep Reading

Reflecting on 2016

Posted December 27, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Mary’s practice of treasuring what has happened and pondering them in her heart is a practice that can serve us well in our own lives.... Keep Reading

Boxing Day Rest

Posted December 26, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Rest. Rest. The weary world rejoices. ... Keep Reading

Reaching out at Christmas

Posted December 23, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Who can you surprise with a Christmas invitation this year?... Keep Reading

Christmas across divides

Posted December 22, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Our differences don’t go away; they just cease to keep us apart.... Keep Reading

Even for the religious

Posted December 21, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Wouldn’t it be great if all of us had our eyes fixed on Jesus and our hearts filled with joy? ... Keep Reading

Christmas on the margins

Posted December 20, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

It doesn’t take much to see that the problems of little people don’t amount to a hill of beans in this crazy world... Keep Reading

Christmas is for everyone

Posted December 19, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Because Christmas is for everyone, Christmas is for you and for everyone you love.... Keep Reading

Christmas tension

Posted December 16, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Going home for the holidays can be difficult.... Keep Reading

God can join your story

Posted December 15, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

There’s no story that God cannot join.... Keep Reading

Caesar vs. Jesus

Posted December 14, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Don’t go to Jesus expecting to find a king like Caesar Augustus. He has his own personality, his own priorities, and his own values. The kingdom in which Jesus rules and reigns differs tremendously from the empire of the Caesars.... Keep Reading

God and good outcomes

Posted December 13, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God is not thrown by the twists and turns life throws us. He can leverage and redeem them. He can see to it that good comes about despite them. And this can help us trust him.... Keep Reading

Unintended consequences

Posted December 12, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The ripple effect of one small decision can be felt throughout a community or throughout a lifetime.... Keep Reading

The Lord will fulfill his promises

Posted December 9, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Blessed are you if you believe the Lord will fulfill his promises to you.... Keep Reading

Given spectacular work

Posted December 8, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Time and time again the Lord has empowered both women and men to speak up in the power of the Spirit and testify about Jesus. And he empowers us today.... Keep Reading

Your faith-giving story

Posted December 7, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Have you ever considered this possibility: God’s faithfulness to you may be used to bolster someone else’s faith?... Keep Reading

The choice to give credit

Posted December 6, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Crediting the Lord is a choice that we make. And it’s a choice worth making. ... Keep Reading

Disappointment with God

Posted December 5, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

One of the Christmas surprises we have to reckon with this season is the surprise of disappointment. We have such high hopes for God’s work and intervention. But they won’t always be fulfilled.... Keep Reading

Mary's Song

Posted December 2, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When Joseph found out about the pregnancy, he went and took a nap. When Mary found out, she went to visit a friend and sang a song.... Keep Reading

A simple, mechanical question

Posted December 1, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God connected with history in a new way in Jesus. He connects with us in a new way through Jesus today.... Keep Reading

The Surprising King

Posted November 30, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Through Christmas, Mary was pulled into God’s bigger story. And we are too. Through Christmas we’re invited to participate in significant ways in God’s subversive kingdom.... Keep Reading

A Surprising Greeting

Posted November 29, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

You are highly favored and the Lord is with you. ... Keep Reading

A Surprising Location

Posted November 28, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

What resources do you think are necessary for things to change for the better?... Keep Reading

Joseph's obedience

Posted November 25, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

In those early years of Jesus’ life, his adopted father sheltered him from political powers that would gladly have taken his life and obstructed his saving mission.... Keep Reading

A Bigger Perspective

Posted November 24, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Once Joseph received this bigger perspective, his reason for being afraid went away. When he chose to listen and believe, his life changed.... Keep Reading

The influence of character

Posted November 23, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Joseph didn’t ask for this burden, but he did the best he could to navigate this difficult challenge in a faithful way.... Keep Reading

Surprising everyone

Posted November 22, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Christmas came as a surprise for everyone involved. No one would have expected God to act in this way.... Keep Reading

Christmas history

Posted November 21, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God wants to meet us in the real world. ... Keep Reading

Generous happiness

Posted November 18, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Our generous God wants us to share his happiness. ... Keep Reading

Held Accountable

Posted November 17, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Wherever you are on the spectrum, your relationship with the master makes a tremendous difference. ... Keep Reading

Hustling and hiding

Posted November 16, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

What are we doing with what God has entrusted to us?... Keep Reading

Each according to ability

Posted November 15, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Not everyone starts from the same starting place.... Keep Reading

Generosity and Gratitude

Posted November 14, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Without gratitude generosity falls to the wayside.... Keep Reading

Sacrificial Generosity

Posted November 11, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Sacrificial gifts have a deeper significance than gifts that are given out of our surplus; the difference between someone giving you the shirt off their back and a shirt out of their closet.... Keep Reading

Who gave more?

Posted November 10, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Who gave more: the wealthy or the poor?... Keep Reading

More than the temple

Posted November 9, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Place your devotion on Christ himself: the one who made you, loved you, rescued you, and gave you purpose.... Keep Reading

God paying attention

Posted November 8, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus didn’t just pay attention to the large gifts of the wealthy; he also paid attention to the significant gift of a poor widow.... Keep Reading

Big Religious Show

Posted November 7, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Healthy conversations about God and money can help us become generous-hearted people.... Keep Reading

Your heart and your treasure

Posted November 4, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus cares about your “treasure” because he treasures you and knows the impact that our resources have on our allegiances.... Keep Reading

The gift of the kingdom

Posted November 3, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God has so much more for us than we could ever gain on our own.... Keep Reading

Generosity and trust

Posted November 2, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

You can’t separate generosity and trust.... Keep Reading

A bigger perspective

Posted November 1, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

What would happen if God’s people truly learned to trust him?... Keep Reading

Worry and Generosity

Posted October 31, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The practice of generosity can be used by God to liberate us from the weight of worry.... Keep Reading

Our Margins and Our Lord

Posted October 28, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God is God and we are not.... Keep Reading

Work in the margins

Posted October 27, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The Lord pays attention to the margins of our lives and those who live on the margins of society.... Keep Reading

The Blessing of Margin

Posted October 26, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Preserving margin blesses both the people keeping the margin and their community.... Keep Reading

Challenges to margin

Posted October 25, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Margin ain't easy.... Keep Reading

Maintaining Margin

Posted October 24, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Few things prove harder to maintain than healthy margin.... Keep Reading

The Generous Image

Posted October 21, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

If we are made in his image, it should not surprise us that when we are living a generous life, it brings us joy, too.... Keep Reading

Generous joy

Posted October 20, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God is so committed to being generous with us that he starts us out in paradise and secures for us eternal joy at the sacrifice of his Son.... Keep Reading

Generous sharing

Posted October 19, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God not only makes a wonderful creation, he generously shares it with people that they might tend to it in a way that he would.... Keep Reading

The Generous Maker

Posted October 18, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

You are uniquely and brilliantly designed by a generous God who has stamped you with his image.... Keep Reading

Generous Creator

Posted October 17, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God has given us signs and signals of his character in the generosity of the wonder of all that he has created.... Keep Reading

Spoil love

Posted October 14, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Don’t let conflict with a brother or sister stop the overflow of God’s love in you.... Keep Reading

What motivates us to serve?

Posted October 13, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Fear can motivate us to serve others. So can love. On the surface, you might not be able to tell the difference between the two. ... Keep Reading

More than words

Posted October 12, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God didn’t just say that he loved us. He showed us. He backed up his love with action.... Keep Reading

Love starts with God

Posted October 11, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Because God loves first, God gets to decide who we are to love.... Keep Reading

You need to know God is love

Posted October 10, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

This Sunday we’ll replace our regular worship services with a community-wide day of serving our community together. And this is directly connected to our belief that God is love.... Keep Reading

It worked

Posted October 7, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

The blessed life we experience when we obey God is actually the by-product of something else. Let’s circle around to take a look at it.... Keep Reading

Faithfulness Matters

Posted October 6, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Faithfulness matters to us because we have a God who has proven himself faithful.... Keep Reading

How will it work?

Posted October 5, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We may know what he will do, but the how stands beyond our comprehension. ... Keep Reading

Strange plans

Posted October 4, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The Lord often works in mysterious ways. That popular proverb prompts peace until you’re stuck in the middle of a weird “mysterious-ways” situation.... Keep Reading

Juxtaposition

Posted October 3, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God promises to act and invites us to join him... Keep Reading

Self-protection

Posted September 30, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Our attempts at self-protection will, at times, interfere with our experience of God. He does amazing things in our lives when we’re willing to be vulnerable to him.... Keep Reading

Worship is warfare

Posted September 29, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

We respond to God with open hearts and are transformed by him. We humble ourselves. We need this more than he needed plans, guidance, or miraculous intervention. ... Keep Reading

Neither

Posted September 28, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God is always right and good. And that means that he’s always on his own side.... Keep Reading

Whose side are you on?

Posted September 27, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Whenever we find ourselves in highly politicized, highly charged environments, it’s entirely natural to want bright lines. We seek them out of instinct.... Keep Reading

What Got You Here

Posted September 26, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The same God walks with us from season to season but the way we see his provision changes.... Keep Reading

Stones vs Walls

Posted September 23, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

If you compare your small pile of stones to the great structures that cast shadows over you, you’ll miss out. ... Keep Reading

Story triggers

Posted September 22, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Symbol and ritual will remain hollow, empty and dead unless they are articulated and explained. ... Keep Reading

Storytelling historians

Posted September 21, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

We carry a responsibility to faithfully pass along what we’ve heard and seen of the Lord.... Keep Reading

Go back

Posted September 20, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

At times this “going back” experience comes to us for the sake of someone else: you go back into the fire because someone you care about is in there.... Keep Reading

Miraculous Experiences

Posted September 19, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Have you had miraculous experiences with God?... Keep Reading

At flood stage

Posted September 16, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Perhaps God had the people cross over when the river ran at flood stage to make it clear to all who were willing to believe that he was involved in this endeavor.... Keep Reading

Wade in the water

Posted September 15, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God’s deliverance happens upstream. The miracles are decisive. The results are guaranteed. But it’s all happening upstream.... Keep Reading

Present and accounted for

Posted September 14, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

No matter where you wander or where you roam, no matter where your courage-journey takes you, you will never be beyond the reach or presence of the God who loves you.... Keep Reading

Whole-hearted commitment

Posted September 13, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When the Lord does amazing things in our midst, will we be ready?... Keep Reading

A Communal Courage-Story

Posted September 12, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The Lord often leads us to places where our own courage can never be sufficient.... Keep Reading

A Picture of the Gospel

Posted September 9, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus showed courage. We benefitted.... Keep Reading

Engage the tension

Posted September 8, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Engaging God directly is the best way to engage the tension we feel when we’re confused by God’s action or inaction. ... Keep Reading

Aware of the Lord

Posted September 7, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Do whatever it takes to be aware of the Lord today. ... Keep Reading

Unlikely allies

Posted September 6, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The Lord loves to create unlikely alliances.... Keep Reading

Trust Exercise

Posted September 5, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The path to the Lord’s promise is always paved with risk.... Keep Reading

Affirmation

Posted September 2, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We all will struggle at times to believe the word of God that is spoke over us.... Keep Reading

The Irony

Posted September 1, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We can so easily overestimate the level of our obedience to the Lord. ... Keep Reading

Part of this world

Posted August 31, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When Jesus saves us and welcomes us into the family of God he begins to connect us with people who are different from us.... Keep Reading

Generosity motivated

Posted August 30, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

God’s generosity toward us motivates our obedience to him.... Keep Reading

Call to adventure

Posted August 29, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We all will have times in our lives when the Lord will call us to great adventures.... Keep Reading

Follow the path

Posted August 26, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

We may not know all the twists and turns that the path will take, but we know where it ultimately leads and we know who walks it with us.... Keep Reading

The purposes of God

Posted August 25, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Out of trust comes both strength and courage.... Keep Reading

The Source of our Courage

Posted August 24, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God’s presence fills us with strength and courage. ... Keep Reading

Will be with you

Posted August 23, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

What could you do if only you knew the Lord would be with you?... Keep Reading

Filling Big Shoes

Posted August 22, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Moses was dead.... Keep Reading

The discipline of confident waiting

Posted August 19, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

How can we grow in this discipline of confident waiting when we are in a season where waiting for the Lord is our most faithful option?... Keep Reading

Both confident and flexible

Posted August 18, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Confidence and flexibility both stand as necessities when dealing with the promises of God.... Keep Reading

A Primal Fear

Posted August 17, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

In today’s psalm we encounter that primal fear that God might forget or reject us. ... Keep Reading

What are you looking for?

Posted August 16, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

All too often we go to the Lord looking for safety or for victory, but have little desire in our hearts to be with the Lord himself.... Keep Reading

The Lord our Stronghold

Posted August 15, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

David didn’t fear his enemies ... Keep Reading

Zoom out

Posted August 12, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Our trust in the Lord also has a direct impact on the people around us. ... Keep Reading

Remember, forget, remember

Posted August 11, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

David wants to be remembered according to the great love of the Lord.... Keep Reading

Trust and shame

Posted August 9, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Those who trust in the Lord have a secure relationship with him.... Keep Reading

Who you trust

Posted August 8, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

God alone is worthy of our complete and total trust.... Keep Reading

The Difference Unity Makes

Posted August 5, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God’s people were always meant to live together in blessed unity. ... Keep Reading

Good and Pleasant

Posted August 4, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The life God’s people live together is both good and pleasant. ... Keep Reading

Not Uniformity

Posted August 3, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

An imposter has stolen Unity’s identity and attempted to pass himself off in her stead.... Keep Reading

The Interruption of Reconciliation

Posted August 2, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

This too is worship unto the God who desires brothers and sisters to live together in unity.... Keep Reading

Journey in Community

Posted August 1, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The community that ascends the mountain of the Lord together is a community that values unity. ... Keep Reading

King of Glory

Posted July 29, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Sing the psalms... Keep Reading

A Mighty Good Leader

Posted July 28, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When we praise our earthly leaders, let’s not forget to praise the Lord.... Keep Reading

Blessing and vindication

Posted July 27, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God has blessing and vindication to give in abundance.... Keep Reading

Clean hands and pure hearts

Posted July 26, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

How do we get clean hands and a pure heart?... Keep Reading

Everything and Everyone

Posted July 25, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Have you ever considered the comprehensive nature of God’s ownership? ... Keep Reading

The Good Shepherd

Posted July 22, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When we are attacked, he’s attacked. When we suffer, he suffers. And he takes the worst of it on himself.... Keep Reading

Full Life

Posted July 21, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Try asking for it!... Keep Reading

Freedom-giving Boundaries

Posted July 19, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

When Jesus gives us boundaries and restrictions, he’s giving a gift to us, not taking something from us.... Keep Reading

Know his voice

Posted July 18, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Four ways you can grow your familiarity with the voice of Jesus... Keep Reading

Embracing limits

Posted July 15, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Humility doesn’t require us to beat up on ourselves; just to be honest about the areas where we make mistakes, fall short and hit limits.... Keep Reading

One thing I know

Posted July 14, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

People can doubt your testimony but they can never take it away.... Keep Reading

Whose resources?

Posted July 13, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

All too often we find ourselves keeping hurting and suffering people at an arms’ distance and wishing in some corner of our hearts that we had the resources or skills to help them. ... Keep Reading

Shifting the questions

Posted July 12, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God is more interested in redeeming suffering than he is in explaining it.... Keep Reading

Beyond the questions

Posted July 11, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

A real blind man sat at their feet, asking for help.... Keep Reading

Free at last

Posted July 8, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Where will your freedom take you?... Keep Reading

Real freedom

Posted July 7, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Following Jesus isn’t easy, but it’s worth it.... Keep Reading

Know the truth

Posted July 6, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus is talking about three truths: the truth about ourselves, the truth about the world around us, and the truth about God.... Keep Reading

Beyond Belief

Posted July 5, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

If we know, remember, and obey Jesus’ teaching … if we hold to his teaching, then we’re his disciples.... Keep Reading

Belief and Connection

Posted July 4, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Common beliefs pull us together... Keep Reading

Mercy and Challenge

Posted July 1, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Grapple with your beliefs about sin... Keep Reading

Under one condition

Posted June 30, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

An awareness of our own sin moderates our response to sin in the lives of others.... Keep Reading

The Who Question

Posted June 28, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

All of our hopes hang on Jesus being not only just but also forgiving.... Keep Reading

Surprised by Jesus

Posted June 27, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

As we step forward into the next year, we know that Jesus will surprise us.... Keep Reading

Communal examination

Posted June 24, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The person who hasn’t practiced self-examination will struggle to experience self-control.... Keep Reading

Going forward

Posted June 23, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Tomorrow will be Yesterday before we know it.... Keep Reading

You and Christ

Posted June 22, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Self-examination leads to us to remember the saving sacrifice of Jesus.... Keep Reading

Anchor and learn

Posted June 21, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Ignoring the past makes you susceptible in the future.... Keep Reading

Take a life inventory

Posted June 20, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Guided by scripture and the Holy Spirit, we can encounter God in these moments of examination.... Keep Reading

Pray for your community

Posted June 17, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Let’s think about Jeremiah’s charge to pray to the Lord for the city.... Keep Reading

Engaged with the city

Posted June 16, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Even though we don’t live in densely-populated, urban areas, we live in the midst of systems and structures that extend beyond individuals.... Keep Reading

Peace and prosperity

Posted June 15, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God’s people bring God’s blessing to the whole world, even at a cost to themselves.... Keep Reading

Putting down roots

Posted June 14, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Settling down feels like settling. But God has a purpose for us, a reason he placed us where he placed us.... Keep Reading

Placed on purpose

Posted June 13, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God placed them in Babylon; therefore, there’s work for them to do.... Keep Reading

The end of James

Posted June 10, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

With these words, James closes his letter.... Keep Reading

Wander not lost

Posted June 9, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

The lost can be found. The trapped can be set free. The wanderers can be brought back.... Keep Reading

Risky prayers

Posted June 8, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We have to rely on God when we pray big, risky prayers.... Keep Reading

Praying with courage and wisdom

Posted June 7, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We need to listen to what James actually says (instead of what we secretly hope he’s saying).... Keep Reading

Inventory your prayer life

Posted June 6, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

James picks out several different reasons to pray and several different ways to pray.... Keep Reading

Rich People

Posted June 3, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The vast majority of the world’s population lives on less than $10 per day, making us some of the richest people living on the planet today (and in human history).... Keep Reading

Delayed Obedience

Posted June 2, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |5 Comments

Don’t delay the good you know you need to do today because you’re caught up scheming for tomorrow. ... Keep Reading

Future Planning

Posted June 1, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The Lord is free to exert his will on any and all of our plans.... Keep Reading

Fragile Future

Posted May 31, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Knowing that we are mist-people motivates us to cling to our solid God.... Keep Reading

Talk about the future

Posted May 30, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |3 Comments

If we’re not careful, we’ll plan our lives without giving thought to God.... Keep Reading

No shuffle

Posted May 27, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We are freshwater people. ... Keep Reading

Words like God

Posted May 26, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

We are made in God’s image and likeness.... Keep Reading

Why Try

Posted May 25, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Knowing that we’ll stumble prepares us to receive God’s helping hand as he draws us to our feet to try again.... Keep Reading

Spark

Posted May 24, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Fire in the fireplace can give warmth to the house. Fire in a grill can feed a family. Fire in a lamp can give light to a community. But we must, must, must prevent forest fires.... Keep Reading

The Power of Words

Posted May 23, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

This week we’ll be listening to James’ teaching on the importance (and difficulty) of taming the tongue.... Keep Reading

Deeds and faith

Posted May 20, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Take a Holy-Spirit-led inventory of your faith and deeds... Keep Reading

Faith into action

Posted May 19, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

What are some ways you can put your faith into action?... Keep Reading

Faith without deeds

Posted May 18, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Why would anyone claim to have faith without deeds?... Keep Reading

Laws and Freedom

Posted May 17, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

James believes that God can use the law to give freedom. ... Keep Reading

Listening and Doing

Posted May 16, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Listening is important work. But listening is not the same as doing.... Keep Reading

Favoritism Commandment

Posted May 13, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

How does favoritism connect with The Great Commandment? ... Keep Reading

Excusing Favoritism

Posted May 12, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We can find a dozen different reasons to justify our favoritism. But in the end, just like an unhealthy relationship, favoritism will hurt us.... Keep Reading

Surprising Favoritism

Posted May 11, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When James tells us not to show favoritism, it isn’t because everyone’s equal.... Keep Reading

Favoritism Example

Posted May 10, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

We find ourselves attracted to people who are like us and to people who are like the people we wish we were like... Keep Reading

Going to town on favoritism

Posted May 9, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Given our relationship with each other and our relationship with Jesus, how can we show favoritism? ... Keep Reading

Filtering pollutants

Posted May 6, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We pray for wisdom and courage to navigate life in this beautiful, dangerous world.... Keep Reading

A history of caring

Posted May 5, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

James explicitly singles out the care of orphans and widows in his description of “acceptable religion.” This is not a random choice.... Keep Reading

Doing Good in Hard Times

Posted May 4, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

As the church expanded and grew, their concern for those who were less fortunate became one of their distinguishing marks.... Keep Reading

Worthless religion

Posted May 3, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

James wants his readers to experience the joy of integrity.... Keep Reading

Good religion

Posted May 2, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

This week we’ll be exploring James’ thoughts on religion, particularly the difference between “worthless religion” and “acceptable religion.”... Keep Reading

God is the source

Posted April 29, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

For James and for us the most important question we can answer is the “Who is God?” Question. ... Keep Reading

Applying the concept

Posted April 28, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Applying this “chain” takes some intentional work.... Keep Reading

The chain of temptation

Posted April 27, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Sin doesn’t exist in a vacuum.... Keep Reading

God can be trusted

Posted April 26, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Let’s try two thought-experiments.... Keep Reading

The Difference Between Trials and Temptations

Posted April 25, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

According to James, God sends trials but he is not responsible for temptations. That difference may seem arbitrary to us, but it matters tremendously to James.... Keep Reading

Blessed

Posted April 22, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Blessed are those who experience trials because they get a specific kind of benefit that can only come on the other side of a trial.... Keep Reading

Foundations exposed

Posted April 21, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

During our trials, we need to maintain a firm conviction that God is willing and able to give us wisdom to navigate our difficult circumstances. ... Keep Reading

Generous with wisdom

Posted April 20, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Our generous God cares immensely about who we’re becoming as we walk through life.... Keep Reading

What trials produce

Posted April 19, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Trials change us: for the better or for worse.... Keep Reading

How we process trials

Posted April 18, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Trials remain trials. Pain remains pain. Suffering remains suffering. But we aren’t helpless.... Keep Reading

Search in progress

Posted April 15, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus' compassion and love extend even to those of us who cross our arms and mutter in response to his generosity.... Keep Reading

Complicated Lost-ness

Posted April 14, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Rejoicing is the only appropriate response when someone comes home to God.... Keep Reading

Emotional Journey

Posted April 13, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

But if we push through the valley with faithful endurance, what a joy waits for us on the other side: second chances, restoration, new life!... Keep Reading

When rejoicing spreads through heaven

Posted April 12, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God values “lost sheep” so much that rejoicing spreads through heaven whenever one person changes their life course and heads home to God.... Keep Reading

Making a special effort

Posted April 11, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Throughout his ministry Jesus made a special effort to connect with those who were socially ostracized, vulnerable and far from God.... Keep Reading

The correction of the Father

Posted April 8, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

While the father’s patient forgiveness of the younger son is obvious, it’s important that we not miss that he’s just as generous with the older, self-righteous son.... Keep Reading

More than dignity

Posted April 7, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

“This son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.”... Keep Reading

The reputation of the Father

Posted April 6, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

The way people answer the “What’s God like?” question matters tremendously.... Keep Reading

Grieving the disaster

Posted April 5, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

If you have a loved one who has left home for a distant country and met disaster, grief is healthy. ... Keep Reading

The Generous Father

Posted April 4, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

That’s his reputation. And his core of generosity never seems to be exhausted.... Keep Reading

Self-Righteous Isolation

Posted April 1, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

One cannot be a son without being a brother. One cannot be a brother without being a son.... Keep Reading

Performance v Relationship

Posted March 31, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Our place in God’s family is secured because of our relationships, not because of our performance.... Keep Reading

Unjustified anger

Posted March 30, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Feeling anger in the face of injustice or evil is a totally appropriate response. Even Jesus felt anger. But our anger isn’t always justified.... Keep Reading

Beneath the obedience

Posted March 29, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

They stuff their frustration and pocket their pain so that everyone around them can focus on the crisis. But this comes at a great cost to their souls.... Keep Reading

The Pathway to Self-Righteousness

Posted March 28, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

There’s a story behind every self-righteous person’s arrogance.... Keep Reading

Dead and Alive again

Posted March 25, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus the son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.... Keep Reading

Rehearsing your speech

Posted March 24, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The younger son comes up with a plan for how he can influence his reception when he arrives back at his father’s house.... Keep Reading

Come to your senses

Posted March 23, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Caught up in our own sin or our own busyness or drama, we need something to jar us out of our pattern of behavior.... Keep Reading

The Descent into Darkness

Posted March 22, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

If you’ve ever watched VH-1’s “Behind the Music” you know where this story is going.... Keep Reading

Straining at the Leash

Posted March 21, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

What do you think are the consequences of ignoring the ways our worst nature strains at its leash?... Keep Reading

Attracting a crowd

Posted March 18, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus continues to attract people to himself for different reasons.... Keep Reading

Core Convictions

Posted March 17, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We have to clarify what’s most essential and cling to it... Keep Reading

Jesus be the center

Posted March 16, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When we think and talk about breaking through barriers, we must remain centered on Jesus.... Keep Reading

Unhappy Easter

Posted March 15, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Not everyone’s happy about Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem.... Keep Reading

Excited about Jesus

Posted March 14, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Even when things in our lives are difficult, there’s a part of us that continues burn with excitement for Jesus.... Keep Reading

A Legacy of Intentionality

Posted March 11, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Our decisions to tear down dividing walls in Jesus’ name will impact the generations that follow us.... Keep Reading

Shepherding a Breakthrough

Posted March 10, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Barnabas' first response to the breakthrough was celebration.... Keep Reading

Generosity and Accountability

Posted March 9, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Why did the church in Jerusalem send Barnabas to Antioch?... Keep Reading

The experience of being an outsider

Posted March 8, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

There’s something about the experience of being an outsider that prepares you to connect with other outsiders, even if they’re different from you.... Keep Reading

Old Habits Die Hard

Posted March 7, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Something had to change. And something did change.... Keep Reading

Sweet openness

Posted March 4, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

How ready are you to listen to those who come from outside your circle of relationships? ... Keep Reading

Peace Posture

Posted March 3, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |3 Comments

In our efforts to break through barriers, we often stop short of this step of radical humility.... Keep Reading

Complex Privilege

Posted March 2, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

If we encounter complicated power dynamics when interacting with our bosses and our in-laws, how much more will we encounter them when attempting to cross economic and ethnic divides?... Keep Reading

Power Dynamics

Posted March 1, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Power dynamics often come into play when breaking through the walls that divide us.... Keep Reading

A Person of Peace

Posted February 29, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Who can help us cross fault-lines by receiving us when we make the leap across the divide?... Keep Reading

Encounter Gaps

Posted February 26, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We’re tempted to fill in those gaps. And, having filled in those gaps, we’re tempted to be guarded and defensive.... Keep Reading

What Divides Us

Posted February 25, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When we decide which rules to keep and which rules to toss, we end up leveraging rules to maintain divisions between us and people who are different from us.... Keep Reading

Patterns of Life

Posted February 24, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Habits ingrained over the course of a lifetime can be hard to break.... Keep Reading

Positioned Perfectly

Posted February 23, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Although Peter didn’t know it, he was being positioned by God to extend God’s mission across a barrier that had never been crossed.... Keep Reading

Breakthrough

Posted February 19, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

There seems ... Keep Reading

Really Listening

Posted February 18, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Listening is a powerful response to a complaint.... Keep Reading

Legitimate Complaints

Posted February 17, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Bringing the breakdown to the surface ...... Keep Reading

When Generous Communities Fall Short

Posted February 16, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

What happens next ... Keep Reading

Growing Pains

Posted February 15, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Challenge always comes with growth. The question that’s presented to us is: “What will we do in response to these challenges?”... Keep Reading

Wherever wisdom is found

Posted February 12, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

If this mission really is from God, it goes from “mission impossible” to “mission inevitable.”... Keep Reading

Obey God Rather Than Men

Posted February 11, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Take time to cultivate an ear for the voice of the Lord.... Keep Reading

The Call to Go Back

Posted February 10, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The same God who provides daring rescues also sends his people into dangerous situations. But he never sends them alone.... Keep Reading

Responding in tough situations

Posted February 9, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Why do the same circumstances harden some and polish others?... Keep Reading

Boldness instead of safety

Posted February 8, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God forms us and shapes us and makes us bold-patient-loving in the midst of our day-to-day lives.... Keep Reading

Systemic Transformation

Posted February 5, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When God’s people leave life in their wake, social systems around them are transformed.... Keep Reading

Relationships Healed

Posted February 4, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

And our community, filled with grace and the Holy Spirit, should be a place where we’re continually seeing relationships get healthier and healthier.... Keep Reading

Healing Hearts and Minds

Posted February 3, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Wounds aren’t always physical.... Keep Reading

When Healing Does Not Happen

Posted February 2, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Let’s avoid hollow and unhelpful answers.... Keep Reading

Miraculous Healing

Posted February 1, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Those of us who are Jesus’ followers will, at times, have the privilege to pray for healing for people, reach out and touch them, and God will bring new life.... Keep Reading

Restoration is the goal

Posted January 29, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God’s great restoration work is already underway. But God’s restoration project is not yet complete. ... Keep Reading

Times of refreshing

Posted January 28, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The weight of sin we carry exhausts us to the core. Only when it’s been lifted from us will we feel truly refreshed.... Keep Reading

Know and Do Better

Posted January 27, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Once ignorance is removed, a new level of accountability and responsibility appears.... Keep Reading

Common Ground

Posted January 26, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Peter focused on the common ground he shared with his hearers.... Keep Reading

Internal and external obstacles

Posted January 25, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

There’s a huge difference between taking credit and giving credit. ... Keep Reading

Risk-taking Faith

Posted January 22, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We will have to demonstrate risk-taking faith as we join God in his without-him-it-would-be-impossible mission.... Keep Reading

Offer what you have

Posted January 21, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

You may not have two nickels to rub together, but ... Keep Reading

Compassion Fatigue

Posted January 20, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Making that connection with another human being can free us from our compassion fatigue.... Keep Reading

A Magnificent Collision

Posted January 19, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

A collision between this man’s persistent requests for help and the representatives of a good God who gives us beyond anything we can ask or imagine... Keep Reading

Daily and Weekly Rhythms

Posted January 18, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We never know which days will prove to be full of extraordinary events.... Keep Reading

Vibrant vs Growing

Posted January 15, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Vibrant inward community in this case spilled over into favor, growth and transformation.... Keep Reading

Rhythm of life together

Posted January 14, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The life that God calls us to in Christ is a life in community... Keep Reading

Continuously fully present

Posted January 13, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

Nothing else mattered nearly as much as Jesus and being a part of his movement.... Keep Reading

No spectators

Posted January 12, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When we engage God’s mission, we all have a role to play. ... Keep Reading

With Growth Comes Challenge

Posted January 11, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

And challenges are essential to growth.... Keep Reading

Explain the good news

Posted January 8, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

We can’t let God’s restoration project be mistaken for a little community service.... Keep Reading

His timing is perfect

Posted January 7, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

He knew what he was doing. He knows what he is doing.... Keep Reading

Spectacular and Ordinary

Posted January 6, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God’s spectacular Spirit often meets us, guides us and empowers us in ordinary, non-spectacular ways. ... Keep Reading

God with us

Posted January 5, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

As we lean into and engage God’s great global restoration project, we need him to be present with us.... Keep Reading

Gathering and scattering

Posted January 4, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God uses these times of gathering to equip, empower and envision his people. And then God sends them out.... Keep Reading

Should you choose to accept it

Posted January 1, 2016 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We witness through our words and through our lives ... Keep Reading

The Spirit and preparation

Posted December 31, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

As we prepare to join God’s great mission, we need the Holy Spirit.... Keep Reading

Waiting Dangerously

Posted December 30, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

Trust God to look out for you and for his own mission.... Keep Reading

The Gospel of the Spirit

Posted December 29, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God’s mission will prove impossible without the Spirit’s involvement.... Keep Reading

An impossible mission

Posted December 28, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Two thousand years ago Jesus gave these unsophisticated, uneducated, unspectacular people a mission: to be his witnesses even to the ends of the earth. ... Keep Reading

Merry Christmas 2015

Posted December 25, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

A long reading from the Gospel of Luke and a few reflection questions... Keep Reading

At just the right time

Posted December 24, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God always shows up in our lives at just the right time.... Keep Reading

Not too late

Posted December 23, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

It’s not too late for you to have a great Christmas. ... Keep Reading

All those Christmases

Posted December 22, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |3 Comments

The first Christmas happened inside of a larger story. This year’s does, too.... Keep Reading

Humbug

Posted December 21, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Every inconvenience is an opportunity. ... Keep Reading

Sonship is the core of the whole gospel

Posted December 18, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God wants our Father-Child relationship with him to transform us and to bless our families.... Keep Reading

God accepts us fully

Posted December 17, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

He adopts us into his family.... Keep Reading

When the set time had fully come

Posted December 16, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Was this really the optimal time for Jesus to come?... Keep Reading

God joined our family

Posted December 15, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Jesus joined our family and took his own special place: the firstborn son, the Savior, the Lord. God with us.... Keep Reading

God includes us in his family

Posted December 14, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When we become Christians, we join a big, wild, diverse, messy family.... Keep Reading

Celebration spills over

Posted December 11, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When God’s people celebrate, those who have little always are blessed.... Keep Reading

The Joy of the Lord is Your Strength

Posted December 10, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We don’t have enough joy on our own to make it through life’s failures and disappointments and trials.... Keep Reading

A Very Good Party

Posted December 9, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Watch small pockets of celebration break out all over the place.... Keep Reading

Mourning and Celebration

Posted December 8, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

As followers of Jesus, we always retain in our hearts a measure of joy, even in the midst of the hardest seasons.... Keep Reading

May He Bless You With Fun

Posted December 7, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Our God knows how to party and have fun and he invites us into that in this season.... Keep Reading

His indescribable gift

Posted December 4, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The indescribable gift of Jesus' life, love and presence transforms us. His generosity makes us generous if we’ll let him do his work in us.... Keep Reading

Be Generous

Posted December 3, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

As we encounter God's generosity, he transforms our hearts and we become the sort of people who can give generously to those who need it.... Keep Reading

The Provision Question

Posted December 2, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Cheerful giving is a litmus-test for genuine, authentic faith.... Keep Reading

Given Good Gifts

Posted December 1, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Seeing God’s generosity in action changes the way we think about generosity. ... Keep Reading

God is able to bless you abundantly

Posted November 30, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God is not stingy, miserly, or grudgingly giving people what they need. He is generous. ... Keep Reading

When Creativity is Hard

Posted November 27, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Don’t sacrifice your relationships for your image of the perfect Christmas.... Keep Reading

A Thanksgiving Psalm

Posted November 26, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Give thanks to the Lord, our God and King. His love endures forever.... Keep Reading

God is an Artist

Posted November 25, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The Spirit of God is a creative Spirit. And all those who are filled with the Spirit receive his creative power.... Keep Reading

Enjoy the Work

Posted November 24, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Our creative work should produce pleasure and joy in us.... Keep Reading

Hanging Christmas Lights

Posted November 23, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The good, beautiful, creative work of God fills the world with joy and wonder. ... Keep Reading

Mutual Interdependence

Posted November 20, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Together, we seek each other’s blessing.... Keep Reading

Marriage Beyond Your Capacity

Posted November 19, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

No marriage can thrive without a support system.... Keep Reading

Choosing to reinvest

Posted November 18, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Choosing to reinvest makes a tremendous difference.... Keep Reading

The Right Person

Posted November 17, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Ask for faith to trust that God has either ordained or is redeeming your marriage.... Keep Reading

Good Purposes

Posted November 16, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |3 Comments

God has plans for us as a community: to do good in our midst and through us.... Keep Reading

Alternative Conflict Options

Posted November 13, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We can move into even the most intense conflicts with creativity and love.... Keep Reading

The Other Person

Posted November 12, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We might try to be healthy, but we don't live in a vacuum.... Keep Reading

Mutually Assured Destruction

Posted November 11, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Like a nuclear arsenal, the biting and devouring power of our words is too dangerous to use safely.... Keep Reading

Why we fight

Posted November 10, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

These vivid words for human conflict tell us something significant about why we fight. ... Keep Reading

Cannibals

Posted November 9, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Close relationships created charged environments where contending factions fight fiercely.... Keep Reading

Reconnect and Refocus

Posted November 6, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Throughout the Bible we see God continuing to pursue and bless humanity in exile. God is with us, always.... Keep Reading

From Blame to Contribution

Posted November 5, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Shifting the blame off of ourselves doesn’t protect us in the long run.... Keep Reading

Your Options

Posted November 4, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

In Jesus, you can choose how you’ll respond when someone blames you for their bad behavior or when you’re confronted about your own.... Keep Reading

Under the bus

Posted November 3, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When our foolish actions are brought to light, we’re always faced with the temptation to blame those actions on someone else.... Keep Reading

Hide and Seek

Posted November 2, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The results of our rebellion ... Keep Reading

Put it into practice

Posted October 30, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The challenge isn’t just to learn, it’s to put these things into practice.... Keep Reading

Out of the Overflow

Posted October 29, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

If it’s out of the overflow of the heart that the mouth speaks, our words give us special insight into what’s going on in our own hearts and in the hearts of the people around us.... Keep Reading

Be a marriage prepper

Posted October 28, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Whatever we store up in our hearts eventually will be brought to light.... Keep Reading

Expecting

Posted October 27, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

A significant part of the journey of marriage involves learning to love the person you’re actually married to... Keep Reading

Grow Your Fruit

Posted October 26, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Even though the corn stalk is more stalk than corn, the corn is what gives it its identity. The same is true for us.... Keep Reading

Love is a choice

Posted October 23, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

We are called to wrap all of our other virtues up in love.... Keep Reading

Forgiveness Required

Posted October 22, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Committed relationships will always require forgiveness.... Keep Reading

Bearing with each other

Posted October 21, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

You can’t “bear with each other” if you’re all alone. ... Keep Reading

Difficult Virtues

Posted October 20, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Where these virtues are most needed is also the place where they’re most difficult to display.... Keep Reading

Find Your Identity

Posted October 19, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The Scriptures tell us that God takes responsibility for our well-being.... Keep Reading

The Good Fruit of the Spirit

Posted October 16, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God’s Spirit is at work in each and every one of us to produce in us this good fruit.... Keep Reading

A Transformed Relationship

Posted October 15, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

The Spirit offers us a new way to live in our marriages.... Keep Reading

No roadmap

Posted October 14, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

All real relationships have a measure of unpredictability.... Keep Reading

Freedom in commitment

Posted October 13, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Ultimate freedom is always found in commitment.... Keep Reading

Love Your Neighbor Today

Posted October 12, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Over the next 6 weeks we're going to be talking about biblical principles of communication and conflict that will be helpful for everyone to know.... Keep Reading

Eating and serving together

Posted October 9, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

We always move out in community.... Keep Reading

And all who join them

Posted October 8, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Celebrations like these always tend to spill over beyond the immediate community. ... Keep Reading

Provision and Serving

Posted October 7, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God dignifies everyone with an invitation to serve.... Keep Reading

Real Life Realities

Posted October 6, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Celebration and service take place right in the middle of real life.... Keep Reading

Setting aside time to celebrate

Posted October 5, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We realize that a day of community service makes for a strange holiday.... Keep Reading

Remember your moments

Posted October 2, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

What had God done for you? What do you need to remember?... Keep Reading

Downstream blessing

Posted October 1, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

We are not the only beneficiaries of the “such a time as this” moments in our lives.... Keep Reading

On celebration

Posted September 30, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The discipline of celebration is especially important for people in exile.... Keep Reading

Take a measured response

Posted September 29, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Across the empire, the uniform posture of the Jews was to protect themselves, not to take advantage.... Keep Reading

A mature response to opposition

Posted September 28, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

A mature response recognizes that not everyone is an enemy, but that enemies are real.... Keep Reading

A calling rediscovered

Posted September 25, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

In exile, God’s people often rediscover their calling.... Keep Reading

Rapid Rise

Posted September 24, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God’s people in exile rise to power when they demonstrate faithfulness and character. But things rarely run in a straight line.... Keep Reading

Disturbing Justice

Posted September 23, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Throughout Scripture we’re called to hold onto both sides of God’s character: mercy and justice. ... Keep Reading

Focus your communication

Posted September 22, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Esther refused to dilute the persuasiveness of her request.... Keep Reading

Gift in the limelight

Posted September 21, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Is there a gift you been waiting to apply and unleash?... Keep Reading

Operational atheism

Posted September 18, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Where in your life do you see operational atheism (ie. you running your plans as if there is no God)? ... Keep Reading

Play the game

Posted September 17, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Where in your life is God calling you to step in and play the game by the rules?... Keep Reading

The Virtue of Credit

Posted September 16, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Choosing to credit God grows our sense of connection with God’s great story in the world.... Keep Reading

Between superstition and cynicism

Posted September 15, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

There’s a tension around prayer.... Keep Reading

Stepping out in faith and community

Posted September 14, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Esther stepped out in faith and she also stepped out in community. ... Keep Reading

For Such a Time as This

Posted September 11, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The place where God invites us to step in is often surprising and un-expected. ... Keep Reading

Hard Truth

Posted September 10, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

How do you think Mordecai’s conviction shaped his willingness to speak the hard truth to Esther? ... Keep Reading

What do I not know

Posted September 9, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When people hustle us through our grief or drag their heels when we think they should move on, asking the “What do I not know?” question makes a huge difference.... Keep Reading

Responding to lament

Posted September 8, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Those who push us to too quickly abandon our grief often do so with good motives.... Keep Reading

Let Lament Happen

Posted September 7, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

There’s something significantly healthy to an honest season of lament following a loss. ... Keep Reading

Conflicts always have backstory

Posted September 5, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Conflicts always have history. They always have backstory. And sometimes it has nothing to do with you.... Keep Reading

The Crisis is the Moment

Posted September 4, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

When we have crisis-moments in our lives, they can feel like obstacles and detours, barriers keeping us from living the lives God has called us to live. ... Keep Reading

Stormcrows and silence

Posted September 3, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We all know people who revel in drama and darkness.... Keep Reading

Drawing a line

Posted September 2, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Healthy boundaries almost always receive resistance, especially when we first put them into place. But they are so worth it!... Keep Reading

Enter the villain

Posted August 31, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Real villains cause real problem that require real intervention on God’s behalf.... Keep Reading

The Right Person

Posted August 28, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The places and times in which we find ourselves reveal who we truly are. ... Keep Reading

Gift and season match

Posted August 27, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Can you identify a gift that God’s given you that you’ve had to sit on for a while?... Keep Reading

Good work and good gifts

Posted August 26, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

For every good work God gives us to do, he’s given us gifts... Keep Reading

Stepping into a different story

Posted August 25, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

If we hold too tightly to what we think God should do, we might miss out on what he’s actually doing.... Keep Reading

Great and unexpected work

Posted August 24, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God was positioning Esther perfectly for the time in which she found herself.... Keep Reading

Goodness and Love

Posted August 21, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Take some time today to let this verse wash over you.... Keep Reading

Goodness and Love

Posted August 21, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Take some time today to let this verse wash over you.... Keep Reading

Anointing

Posted August 20, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

We share in Jesus' anointing. His cup overflows and that means that ours does too.... Keep Reading

The Table for Us

Posted August 19, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We are called to be God's people who will celebrate and feast and remember the Lord even in the face of great opposition.... Keep Reading

Through the Dark Valley

Posted August 18, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

Fill up your reservoir before you hit the dark valley. And if you're in a valley right now, come looking for signs of God's presence and attention.... Keep Reading

Dark Valley Surprise

Posted August 16, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

All you have to do is live long enough and you'll have dark valley experiences.... Keep Reading

The Good Shepherd Guides

Posted August 14, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Your Good Shepherd is guiding you along right paths for his name’s sake. Don’t be afraid.... Keep Reading

Soul Refresh

Posted August 13, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |3 Comments

Resting is essential but not sufficient for a fully healthy soul.... Keep Reading

Hyper Sheep

Posted August 11, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The wise among us will go where the Good Shepherd leads us, even if that’s to a moment of pre-adventure rest.... Keep Reading

I lack nothing

Posted August 11, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The same David who here sings “I lack nothing” elsewhere cried out for God’s help, rescue, protection, provision, forgiveness and attention.... Keep Reading

The Lord is my Shepherd

Posted August 10, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

A shepherd’s job involved leading the sheep to good food, keeping them safe from predators/enemies and protecting them from their own stupidity.... Keep Reading

Mighty to Save

Posted August 7, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Carve out some space to sing to and praise the Lord.... Keep Reading

Unshakeable Trust

Posted August 6, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The engine that drives all of David’s glory is his trust in the Lord.... Keep Reading

God gives glory generously

Posted August 5, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

One way of being glorious involves generously sharing everything you have with everyone you can.... Keep Reading

The Desires of Your Heart

Posted August 4, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God’s at work in the planting as well as the granting of our desires.... Keep Reading

Give Credit

Posted August 3, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Planting a flag of praise is one way we can resist this drift, one way we can stand secure in the face of all our successes.... Keep Reading

Trust in the Lord

Posted July 31, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Hey, we don't trust in chariots or horses.... Keep Reading

The Lord Gives Victory

Posted July 30, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God invites us and expects us to put ourselves out there... Keep Reading

Now this I know

Posted July 29, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

David might not know much. But he knows what he knows.... Keep Reading

Blessing in Distress

Posted July 28, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |4 Comments

David didn't assume that the difficulties in life were obstacles to be avoided. Instead, he painted them as opportunities for us to see God hard at work on our behalf.... Keep Reading

Psalmist Prayer of Blessing

Posted July 27, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Praying this prayer of blessing over them is one way that David contributes to the ongoing spiritual health and vitality of his community.... Keep Reading

Great Expectations

Posted July 24, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Jesus fuels people’s expectations. ... Keep Reading

Receiving and Sharing

Posted July 23, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When Jesus fills us with living water and that water overflows from within us, we give life to the world around us.... Keep Reading

Thirsty

Posted July 22, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Don't ignore your thirst.... Keep Reading

Good judgment

Posted July 21, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The judgment Jesus invites us into involves having good discernment.... Keep Reading

Relationship with the Law

Posted July 20, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

When it comes to the Law we discover a tension, not a contradiction.... Keep Reading

What time is it?

Posted July 17, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Jesus has a great sense of exactly what he's supposed to be doing right now.... Keep Reading

Even Jesus' family ...

Posted July 16, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

There's something especially difficult when family pushes back against you.... Keep Reading

Dwelling with us

Posted July 15, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus has come to provide something more permanent.... Keep Reading

Provoking Strong Feelings

Posted July 14, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Jesus created strong feelings in others. And he still does.... Keep Reading

To Whom Shall We Go?

Posted July 13, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

As we start this week, we want to invite you to incorporate Simon Peter's words to Jesus into your life as a prayer.... Keep Reading

The Spirit-Given Life

Posted July 10, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Apart from the Spirit, all our good activities won't produce life in us. The Spirit gives life.... Keep Reading

Life and life and life

Posted July 9, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus insists that he's the best and only source of life.... Keep Reading

Grumbling to Jesus

Posted July 8, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Doubt and questions can be healthy if we engage with them in healthy ways.... Keep Reading

Comfortable Paradigms

Posted July 7, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

A funny thing happens to Christianity when you start to take Jesus less seriously.... Keep Reading

Controversial in his own day

Posted July 6, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

At various points throughout Jesus’ ministry we see him intentionally drawing lines in the sand and forks in the road.... Keep Reading

In Search of Jesus

Posted July 3, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

Before we’re too tough on this fickle crowd, we see something beautiful in them. They go in search of Jesus.... Keep Reading

Pattern and People and Purpose

Posted July 2, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

Jesus leaves the crowds behind and focuses on his Father.... Keep Reading

Superabundant

Posted July 1, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |4 Comments

God's provision isn’t just abundant; it’s superabundant.... Keep Reading

How Has Jesus Met You?

Posted June 30, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus met the crowds in the midst of their narratives, calendars and expectations.... Keep Reading

The Most Controversial Figure

Posted June 29, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus is the most controversial figure in all of history.... Keep Reading

How Long Lord

Posted June 26, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Isaiah asks the Lord “How long?” And so do all who volunteer for the tough work that has to be done by the people of God in this world.... Keep Reading

Confronting the Gaps

Posted June 25, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Encountering the Lord makes us aware of the gaps in our lives.... Keep Reading

Deeper Call and Deeper Encounter

Posted June 24, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

People who follow and serve God need deeper and deeper encounters with him as they move deeper and deeper into their calling and purpose.... Keep Reading

Volunteer Willingness Assessment

Posted June 23, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Isaiah’s willingness and eagerness to go where the Lord sends him is remarkable and beautiful. We see this eagerness at work every week in Chatham Church. ... Keep Reading

The Day that David Danced

Posted June 22, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

We have so much to celebrate and so many people to appreciate!... Keep Reading

Life Everlasting

Posted June 19, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

The life everlasting contains a promise of the redemption, beautification and perfection of all things.... Keep Reading

The Resurrection of the Body

Posted June 18, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God will not remove our bodies, but will instead perfect them.... Keep Reading

The Forgiveness of Sins

Posted June 17, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Don’t let the opportunity of forgiveness pass you by. What do you need to do today?... Keep Reading

The Communion of the Saints

Posted June 16, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

God’s church is both a global / historical organization and a living / personal organism.... Keep Reading

Holy catholic church

Posted June 15, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When we’re saying that we believe in the holy “catholic” church, we’re saying that there’s a glorious universal movement of churches (“one body”) who all proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ. ... Keep Reading

Why should we ask for the Spirit?

Posted June 12, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

The Holy Spirit causes our character and our work to bear holy fruit.... Keep Reading

What the Holy Spirit makes possible

Posted June 11, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Christ has cleansed us of our sin and joined us to himself. And because he refuses to lose track of us, we can trust that his Spirit will remain with us as well.... Keep Reading

A Spirit to Fear

Posted June 10, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

How can we embrace the Holy Spirit and not fear him?... Keep Reading

The Creative Spirit

Posted June 9, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The Holy Spirit takes the words and promises of God and gives them flesh... Keep Reading

Waiting for a gift

Posted June 8, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Waiting for a gift is the hardest part.... Keep Reading

Foundational Scriptures for Chatham Serves

Posted June 5, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Matthew 25:35-40... Keep Reading

Remember the Poor

Posted June 4, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We need help to remember those who have needs they can't meet out of their own resources. ... Keep Reading

True Security and True Service

Posted June 3, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

True service comes from a place of true security.... Keep Reading

Following Jesus and Serving

Posted June 2, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

In the Christian story, the person at the top comes to the bottom of the org chart.... Keep Reading

Greatness Redefined

Posted June 1, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus affirms their desire to be great. But then he provides an unexpected redefinition of greatness.... Keep Reading

Jesus the Judge

Posted May 29, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Judgment is all about authority. Christ has an authority that is not up for a vote.... Keep Reading

He Sat Down

Posted May 28, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

When we see the Son sitting next to his Father in the tabernacle set up by the Lord, we see a high priest who has finished his work. ... Keep Reading

Rescue and Ascension

Posted May 27, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The story of Jesus ... Keep Reading

Where is heaven?

Posted May 26, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

“Heaven” to the early Christians and the communities from which they originated was a place distinctly different from earth, but not one far away.... Keep Reading

The Space-Making Dance

Posted May 25, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The Father, the Son and the Spirit delight in each other and invite us to share in their delight.... Keep Reading

His Victory Becomes Ours

Posted May 22, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We who believe in him need to learn to live in light of his victory.... Keep Reading

He Descended into Hell

Posted May 21, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

We affirm that Jesus descended into hell for three reasons: commitment, victory and generous opportunity.... Keep Reading

Dying as a path to life

Posted May 20, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Christians have always proclaimed the counterintuitive truth that dying with Christ is the only true path to life and freedom.... Keep Reading

Jesus suffered

Posted May 19, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

He offers relief, strength and redemption to all who suffer as he did.... Keep Reading

Really Just Human

Posted May 18, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Which of these truths do you have a harder time connecting with: that Jesus is really human or that Jesus is not just another human?... Keep Reading

Every square inch

Posted May 15, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Every place you go, every conversation you have, every person you meet … Christ is Lord over all.... Keep Reading

All God's Children

Posted May 14, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

You only have a relationship with the Father through his only true Son.... Keep Reading

Promise-Keeping God

Posted May 13, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

In Jesus, we see the promise-making God keeping his promises and, more than that, fulfilling his promises in spectacular ways.... Keep Reading

How to make an icebreaker awkward

Posted May 12, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

The writers of this Creed knew Jesus was polarizing.... Keep Reading

The Particular-ness of the Creed

Posted May 11, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

There’s a particular-ness that emerges when the Creed takes the turn from the Mighty-Creator-Father to the Christ-Son-Lord Jesus.... Keep Reading

The Creator of Heaven and Earth

Posted May 8, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God created the heavens and the earth. He made it all and he owns it all. From top to bottom, it’s his.... Keep Reading

He's Mighty Mighty

Posted May 7, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We hold on to this tension and believe in an Almighty God even in the face of a world full of pain and suffering.... Keep Reading

God the Father

Posted May 6, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We relate to God as children relating to their father.... Keep Reading

What does it mean to believe?

Posted May 5, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |3 Comments

Exploring our relationship with belief... Keep Reading

The Apostles' Creed

Posted May 4, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

This week we’re going to be starting a new teaching series called “Creed.” We’ll be looking at the Apostles’ Creed and drilling down into what Christians have believed for centuries.... Keep Reading

The Worship-Reconciliation Dialectic

Posted May 1, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Worship leads us to reconciliation and reconciliation sends us back to worship.... Keep Reading

Having a reconciliation conversation

Posted April 30, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

How do we have a reconciliation conversation?... Keep Reading

Worship and Reconciliation

Posted April 29, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Whenever possible, as often as possible, as much as it’s in our power, people who are in tune with God will work toward reconciliation.... Keep Reading

Conviction for Reconciliation

Posted April 28, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Sometimes the Lord directs our attention to a relationship that needs to be repaired.... Keep Reading

A Compassionate Why

Posted April 27, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Reconciliation ... Keep Reading

The Whole Community

Posted April 24, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Refusing to listen to the whole community comes with tremendous consequences.... Keep Reading

Confrontation for Restoration

Posted April 23, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus’ goal for confrontation is reconciliation and restoration.... Keep Reading

Personal and Private

Posted April 22, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus commands his followers to honor folks who are sinning by approaching them personally and privately.... Keep Reading

Mutual Accountability

Posted April 21, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

In God’s kingdom, there’s a mutual accountability that we have with each other.... Keep Reading

Aggressive or Avoidant in Conflict

Posted April 20, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

This week we’re going to unpack this teaching Jesus gave on conflict.... Keep Reading

Agents of Reconciliation

Posted April 17, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

All Christ-followers are called to be agents of reconciliation... Keep Reading

The Command and the Power

Posted April 16, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The reconciliation that has taken place through Christ has an impact on all of our relationships.... Keep Reading

This Infernal Inner Tendency

Posted April 15, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We don’t rule over this sin that desires to have us … at least, not consistently.... Keep Reading

Unforgiveness damages us

Posted April 14, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Unforgiveness always damages our souls.... Keep Reading

A Broader Category for Forgiveness

Posted April 13, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Forgiveness isn’t just something we offer to people who have wronged us. It’s also for people who have unintentionally caused us pain.... Keep Reading

The Cycle of Mercy

Posted April 10, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Within your relationship with God, there’s a cycle of mercy: God forgives us (as we ask) and we obey him (by forgiving others).... Keep Reading

Mercy Must Transform Us

Posted April 9, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

This parable paints a picture of mercy that doesn’t transform... Keep Reading

Math and Mercy

Posted April 8, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We want mercy for ourselves and math for others.... Keep Reading

The Mortal Enemy of Mercy

Posted April 7, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Blame-shifting is the mortal enemy of mercy.... Keep Reading

Agents of Mercy

Posted April 6, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When we receive mercy, we become agents of mercy.... Keep Reading

The Death of Jesus

Posted April 3, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

A Reading from Luke 23:44-49... Keep Reading

He is both Lamb and Priest

Posted April 2, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Jesus is both our High Priest (representing us to God and God to us) and our Sacrifice (taking away our sins). We need him to be both of these for us.... Keep Reading

Our Great High Priest

Posted April 1, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Jesus does both of these things... Keep Reading

The Lamb of God

Posted March 31, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Though we might catch John’s reference, this scene and statement are still very unusual.... Keep Reading

Obstacles to Receiving God's Forgiveness

Posted March 30, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We all have obstacles that try to keep us from receiving God’s forgiveness.... Keep Reading

Celebration and Repentance

Posted March 27, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God continually invites us in to celebrate and to repent.... Keep Reading

Past Grace and Future Provision

Posted March 26, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Help your friends see what God's past grace reveals about his eternal character: we know we can trust him.... Keep Reading

Telling stories

Posted March 25, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

If we want to experience richer, deeper, more thoughtful celebration, we need to practice telling and retelling stories.... Keep Reading

The Lord is My Strength

Posted March 24, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Today, we hear "The Lord is my strength."... Keep Reading

The Discipline of Celebration

Posted March 23, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The spiritual discipline of celebration requires us to discern God's hand in our moments of deliverance.... Keep Reading

When pain speaks louder than promises

Posted March 20, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

We all have multiple voices speaking to us in times of pain and testing. Which voices we choose to make our primary reference points make a huge difference in our experience of these seasons of pain and testing.... Keep Reading

Not all who wander are lost

Posted March 19, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God does things IN us while also doing things THROUGH us. The things he is doing IN us are not just FOR us.... Keep Reading

Direction from the Lord

Posted March 18, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Hearing from God changes over the course of our walk with him... Keep Reading

Connected to history

Posted March 17, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

Wonderful things happen when we maintain a sense of connectedness to our history.... Keep Reading

The Lord's Indirect Route

Posted March 16, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The Lord often leads us by indirect routes for our own good.... Keep Reading

The Story Passover Tells

Posted March 13, 2015 by: Lana Liu |0 Comments

During the Last Supper, on the night he was betrayed, Jesus singled out two elements of the Passover meal to introduce the disciples ... Keep Reading

The Watchful Presence of the Lord

Posted March 12, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The book of Exodus is still answering the question posed by both Moses and Pharaoh: “Who is the Lord?” In this moment we see that he is the one who watches over his people.... Keep Reading

Jesus and the suffering in Exodus

Posted March 11, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Human history is full of moments when God does or doesn’t act. We don’t always understand it. ... Keep Reading

When liking is not enough

Posted March 10, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Just liking God’s people is not enough to avoid the disastrous consequences of rejecting God.... Keep Reading

Finding Favor

Posted March 9, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Over and over again in the Scriptures we read about times when God’s people in captivity improbably find favor, rise to the surface, and bless their captors.... Keep Reading

The Purpose Behind His Promises

Posted March 6, 2015 by: Lana Liu |0 Comments

God's goal for promises is that we grow in relationship with Him.... Keep Reading

Crisis has a short shelf-life

Posted March 5, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

They relent of their evil and repent. But as soon as the crisis passes, they turn back.... Keep Reading

What was God doing with the plagues?

Posted March 4, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

God was calling all who would witness these acts... Keep Reading

The Hard-Hearted Cynic

Posted March 3, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We miss opportunities to know God and experience the softening of our hearts, preferring cynicism to faith.... Keep Reading

Hard hearts and trusting God

Posted March 2, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God revealed his power and justice, his promise-keeping character and loyalty to his people. But this revelation wouldn’t happen if Pharaoh caved at the first sign of God’s power.... Keep Reading

Circling back

Posted February 27, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Moses doesn’t throw his hands up and he doesn’t grit his teeth. Instead, he turns and returns to God.... Keep Reading

Misattribution of Motive

Posted February 26, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

One of the healthiest things we can do in the midst of conflict is to pause and check whether we’ve made a misattribution of motive.... Keep Reading

There's knowing and then there's knowing

Posted February 25, 2015 by: Lana Liu |0 Comments

The Hebrew word for “know” has meanings ranging from knowing by observation and experience to knowing by direct life-giving intimate contact.... Keep Reading

Never Even Tried

Posted February 24, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Time and time again ... Keep Reading

Why should we expect him to obey?

Posted February 23, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

He doesn’t know the Lord. Why should we expect him to obey the Lord?... Keep Reading

Help every step of the way

Posted February 20, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

We won’t have to do it alone. We’ll have help every step of the way.... Keep Reading

Who am I?

Posted February 19, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Small things nip at us, convincing us that we’re not qualified to love or lead or serve in the ways God’s calling us.... Keep Reading

Holy Ground

Posted February 18, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Wherever God is, his presence makes that place holy.... Keep Reading

Available to God

Posted February 17, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Moses has made himself available to God.... Keep Reading

Breaking the routine

Posted February 16, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Moses was willing to break his routine. And he ended up meeting the Lord.... Keep Reading

God hears and remembers and sees and cares

Posted February 13, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Years and years of slavery come and go. And year after year their cry for help went up to God. And there’s good news.... Keep Reading

Confused for An Egyptian

Posted February 12, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Moses gave up on his identity as a Hebrew and as a Deliverer. He contented himself to wander in the wilderness, taking care of sheep for the next 40 years of his life. Only an act of God could turn Moses around.... Keep Reading

The Barb of Rejection

Posted February 11, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God’s presence with Moses gave him courage to risk rejection and healing from its hurt.... Keep Reading

The Holier, Harder Way

Posted February 10, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Moses’ character couldn’t keep up with his giftedness.... Keep Reading

The Exodus Overture

Posted February 9, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

God delivered Moses through the waters and then re-delivers and re-delivers his people through waters, trials, and difficulties all throughout his great and mighty story.... Keep Reading

Positioned Perfectly

Posted February 6, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

Today’s passage features unlikely heroes, positioned perfectly.... Keep Reading

Please pray for the persecuted church

Posted February 5, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |3 Comments

Ideas for how to pray... Keep Reading

Fear, Pride and Connection

Posted February 4, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

God has amazing things in store for us when we connect across the barriers that so often divide human beings.... Keep Reading

A Rich Spiritual Memory

Posted February 3, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

God wants to cultivate in us a rich spiritual memory.... Keep Reading

A Temporary Deliverance

Posted February 2, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

In which we acknowledge both the joys of our deliverances and the harsh realities of their impermanence.... Keep Reading

Healthy confrontation conversations

Posted January 30, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |3 Comments

How can we have healthier conversations about the sins we see in our friends’ lives?... Keep Reading

Weighing Advice

Posted January 29, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

What David needed (and had) was a source beyond his friends against which he could weigh their advice. We need the same thing.... Keep Reading

Knit Together

Posted January 28, 2015 by: Lana Liu |0 Comments

Two different personalities held in the Master Knitter's hands are fashioned into something beautiful.... Keep Reading

With a little help from my friends

Posted January 27, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Blessed are those who have friends who can talk them out of doing stupid things.... Keep Reading

With You Heart and Soul

Posted January 26, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

We all need friends who are going to be with us heart and soul.... Keep Reading

The Party Beyond The End of Time

Posted January 23, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Our feasts and celebrations and parties here in this life are, in a way, rehearsals for the party we have waiting for us in heaven.... Keep Reading

Play in the light

Posted January 22, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Whatever pleasures we’re seeking in our seedy, secret, self-destructive moments of play are fully fulfilled in Christ. God delights to have us play in the light.... Keep Reading

What Grandchildren Teach Us About Play

Posted January 21, 2015 by: Lana Liu |0 Comments

What stands out most to me about a child's play is the way it is woven throughout their day. ... Keep Reading

Jesus keeps the party going

Posted January 20, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Even our most festive moments can be tinged with disappointment. Whatever it was that was supposed to keep the party going, runs out.... Keep Reading

God at play

Posted January 19, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Adam isn’t just set in the Garden to work. He gets to enjoy it too. This has tremendous implications for our work and our play.... Keep Reading

The Work of Cooperation

Posted January 16, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

We are invited to cooperate with Jesus even as he cooperates with the Father.... Keep Reading

Working to believe

Posted January 15, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |4 Comments

It's okay to work to believe... Keep Reading

Will your work spoil or endure?

Posted January 14, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

Jesus can give you what you’re looking for--what you’d really work for if you only knew it was available and the difference it would make.... Keep Reading

Reap the benefits

Posted January 13, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

We are tremendously blessed to not have to start from scratch in every arena of life.... Keep Reading

Eating your work

Posted January 12, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Have you ever engaged in work that's so fulfilling that you forgot to eat? That's the kind of work that Jesus did. And that's the kind of work he calls us to do.... Keep Reading

Looking back, looking ahead

Posted January 9, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

A lot of our work in 2015 will involve undoing damage from 2014.... Keep Reading

Drawing your identity

Posted January 8, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Building our lives around anything other than Jesus eventually collapses... Keep Reading

What reaction reveals about relationship

Posted January 7, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

How do you react when someone criticizes or critiques your work?... Keep Reading

Who do you think you are?

Posted January 6, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |3 Comments

Who you think you are has a tremendous impact on how your work shapes you.... Keep Reading

Limits on Work

Posted January 5, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

From the very beginning, God has put limits on work.... Keep Reading

God's work and ours

Posted January 2, 2015 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

God expects us to be active participants in his work of ordering and sustaining the world.... Keep Reading

God is always working

Posted December 31, 2014 by: Lana Liu |2 Comments

Through it all, God is always working... Keep Reading

Work that resonates

Posted December 30, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

From the very beginning, God has given human beings work to do. God gave the man work to do that fit him, that resonated with how he was made.... Keep Reading

The Creative Image of God

Posted December 29, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

The first thing we see about God is that he’s creative. And we bear his image.... Keep Reading

A way in a manger

Posted December 26, 2014 by: Susan Henson |2 Comments

Why did God choose a stable and a manger as part of the Christmas story?... Keep Reading

Merry Christmas!

Posted December 25, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

For today’s devotional, we wanted to encourage you to take a few minutes to read the Christmas story out loud.... Keep Reading

Into this ordinary world

Posted December 24, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Into this ordinary world, flashes of glory appear... Keep Reading

The Message of the Angel

Posted December 23, 2014 by: Lana Liu |0 Comments

God delivers an amazing message through amazing messengers. Will we pay attention?... Keep Reading

Down for the counting

Posted December 22, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Most of the unhealthy family dynamics we experience around the holidays come from people seeking identity, purpose or security in all the wrong places.... Keep Reading

Finding our way to the path of peace

Posted December 19, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

The Prince of Peace will lead us into the path of peace.... Keep Reading

Act on the light you've been given

Posted December 18, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |3 Comments

Throughout human history, darkness has created anxiety and fear.... Keep Reading

How strong do you like your salvation?

Posted December 17, 2014 by: Lana Liu |0 Comments

When Jesus brings His love to bear on the conflict between God and us, it is so strong that our relationship with him is saved.... Keep Reading

Tender Mercy

Posted December 16, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |3 Comments

Mercy is not just something we receive. Mercy is something we’re invited to walk in and to extend to others.... Keep Reading

Prepare Ye The Way

Posted December 15, 2014 by: Susan Henson |3 Comments

If we have not prepared the way in our own hearts for Jesus, we will never be able to pull off being his true ambassadors... Keep Reading

Prince of Peace

Posted December 12, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |4 Comments

Isaiah looked forward to a leader who would never be in over his head, who wouldn't miss opportunities or get lost or stumble.... Keep Reading

Everlasting Father

Posted December 11, 2014 by: Susan Henson |1 Comments

Our Everlasting Father is never too busy, tired or frustrated to spend time with you.... Keep Reading

Mighty God

Posted December 10, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Deliverance could only come from a Mighty God.... Keep Reading

Wonderful Counselor

Posted December 9, 2014 by: Lana Liu |1 Comments

God sent us the “Wonderful Counselor,” Jesus. All we have to do is bring our worn-out DIY counseling propensity and trade it in to receive Him.... Keep Reading

The Promised Liberator

Posted December 8, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

Throughout this chapter, we hear Isaiah encouraging God’s people that God is going to send a Deliverer, a Liberator, to rescue those people who are walking in darkness.... Keep Reading

Give us today our daily bread

Posted December 5, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

At the center of the prayer Jesus taught his followers to pray, we hear this phrase: give us today our daily bread. We’re going to pray this together today.... Keep Reading

Tenacity and God's Boundaries

Posted December 4, 2014 by: Lana Liu |2 Comments

Are you confident enough of God's love for you to be up-front with Him?... Keep Reading

Why should we pray when God already knows what we need?

Posted December 3, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Why should we pray when God already knows what we need? ... Keep Reading

What requesting does for your relationship with God

Posted December 2, 2014 by: Susan Henson |0 Comments

What if prayer is as much about the process of the asking as it is about the final outcome of our request?... Keep Reading

Just Ask

Posted December 1, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

He invites us to talk to him without giving us the all the answers as to how or why it works.... Keep Reading

A Gratitude List

Posted November 28, 2014 by: Susan Henson |0 Comments

God is always extending his loving hand in our direction, no matter what our circumstances look like. ... Keep Reading

Giving Thanks

Posted November 27, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Even folks who struggle to pray throughout the rest of the day can pause to give thanks before eating.... Keep Reading

Thanksgiving and Adoration

Posted November 26, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Thanksgiving grounds our praise of God in the real world where he’s really working for us and for our salvation.... Keep Reading

Painful Thanksgiving

Posted November 25, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Our hope for thanksgiving this season is not for a perfect Norman Rockwell scene where everything is pain-free. Our hope - now as always - is grounded in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.... Keep Reading

Confession and Thanksgiving

Posted November 24, 2014 by: Lana Liu |3 Comments

Among the myriad of things we have to be thankful for, God's steadfast love tops my list... Keep Reading

A sample prayer of confession

Posted November 21, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Throughout the history of the Christian movement, people have leaned on others to help them pray prayers of confession.... Keep Reading

What happens if we don't confess our sins?

Posted November 20, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

What happens if we don't confess our sins?... Keep Reading

New every morning

Posted November 19, 2014 by: Lana Liu |1 Comments

His mercies are new whenever we confess and we awaken to the darkness-displacing, new-beginning, fresh-starting morning.... Keep Reading

Relief and Reconciliation

Posted November 18, 2014 by: Susan Henson |0 Comments

Confession is good for the soul AND good for relationships … with God and with our fellow humans.... Keep Reading

What is a prayer of confession?

Posted November 17, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Praying prayers of confession helps us communicate authentically with God.... Keep Reading

A prayer of adoration for today

Posted November 14, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Try praying this psalm as a prayer of praise today. The verses in bold are full of truth about God that fuels the praise in the rest of the psalm.... Keep Reading

Joyful, joyful we adore thee

Posted November 14, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

Throughout the history of the Christian movement, men and women have written songs of praise to God. And these songs have been passed down from generation to generation - a tidal wave of praise to God.... Keep Reading

A Sacrifice of Praise

Posted November 13, 2014 by: Lana Liu |1 Comments

I can sincerely whisper "I trust You, Father. I know You are faithful" even when I am struggling. ... Keep Reading

Duty and Delight in the arena of Adoration

Posted November 12, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Is God some insecure middle-schooler who needs us to prop him up?... Keep Reading

I Love You, Jesus

Posted November 11, 2014 by: Susan Henson |2 Comments

Throughout the gospels, Jesus portrays Himself as the Bridegroom and we are His Bride … what a romantic picture. But what is romance without love? And love is a two-way street. Jesus tells us He loves us with every bird that sings, every rainbow that glistens, and every drop of glorious sunray.... Keep Reading

Praise as a response to objective reality

Posted November 10, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

Praying "hallowed be your name" is the only sane response to this reality. And when we praise him, something special happens in us and in our community.... Keep Reading

God is with you

Posted November 7, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |3 Comments

When we think about what we want you to experience in prayer over the course of the next several weeks, we want prayer to connect with both your heart and your hands, to be experienced individually and in community, to be a space where you can creatively engage with our creative God.... Keep Reading

A Hard Master

Posted November 6, 2014 by: Lana Liu |1 Comments

God is the Ultimate Good Daddy and all He requires of me is to show up as His little child.... Keep Reading

Righteous, Powerful and Effective

Posted November 5, 2014 by: Susan Henson |1 Comments

We do not have to wait for our prayers to be powerful and effective. Because of Jesus, we ARE righteous, and so our prayers ARE powerful and effective … NOW!... Keep Reading

Planted near water

Posted November 4, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

A vision for a prayer-filled life roots us. Every day we have an opportunity to walk in ways that harm us and stand in places that hurt us and sit in company that corrupts us. But every day we also have an opportunity ... dozens and dozens of opportunities, actually ... to anchor ourselves more tightly to the Lord.... Keep Reading

Not in Philippians anymore, Toto

Posted November 3, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |3 Comments

We think continual prayer looks like this: a constant awareness of God's presence, a continuing back and forth ... often interrupted but never ended ... between us and God.... Keep Reading

Rejoice in the Lord

Posted October 31, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Rejoicing in the Lord is the energy that enables us to have joy in all things.... Keep Reading

Help, I need somebody

Posted October 30, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

What Paul asked of the Philippians was to engage in a healthy way and to work for reconciliation ... to help ... to walk that tension in the space between being helpful and being overbearing.... Keep Reading

Like-minded in conflict

Posted October 29, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Having the same mind in the Lord starts with having the same mindset as the Lord or, to put it differently, thinking like Jesus.... Keep Reading

Stand firm

Posted October 28, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Stand firm in the Lord. This is an exhortation for our own formation. But this is also an exhortation for our community.... Keep Reading

Joy across the miles

Posted October 27, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Paul keyed in here on both current and future realities to write about his friends. And he communicated these realities beautifully.... Keep Reading

Set your mindset

Posted October 24, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Paul assumed that a faith commitment would have a practical outworking.... Keep Reading

Appetite for Destruction

Posted October 23, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

If we allow our appetites to run roughshod over our lives, they will destroy us.... Keep Reading

Tears for enemies

Posted October 22, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Tears are the healthy, appropriate emotional response to the reality that there are enemies of the cross of Christ.... Keep Reading

Healthy Role of Models

Posted October 21, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

The way you're living your life today is either an imitation of or reaction to a network of people you've seen, heard or experienced.... Keep Reading

Healthy and unhealthy spiritual authority

Posted October 20, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Paul manages to be exhortational and instructional without being dictatorial and it's beautiful. That line is a hard line to walk.... Keep Reading

Knowing and knowing and knowing

Posted October 17, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Our relationship with Christ will continue beyond the gates of death and so our knowing of him will continue to grow.... Keep Reading

Sharing in suffering

Posted October 16, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |4 Comments

We understand better what it means for Christ to share in our sufferings when we have shared in his.... Keep Reading

Resurrection belief and resurrection power

Posted October 15, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Knowing "the power of his resurrection" means both believing in his resurrection and experiencing transforming resurrection power in your life and relationships.... Keep Reading

Knowing Jesus

Posted October 14, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

All who've walked with Jesus for years have learned this truth: knowing Jesus is something that develops over time... Keep Reading

A righteous conversation about righteousness

Posted October 13, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

If you have faith in him and are found in him, what's his is yours ... all of it.... Keep Reading

A Better Game

Posted October 10, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |5 Comments

Faith in Christ alone secures our place in God's community. Christ alone gives us what we need for joy. Everything else is icing on the cake.... Keep Reading

Captured by other stories

Posted October 9, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Paul knew that his friends were in danger of being captured by other stories, stories that would drag them away from light and life and joy.... Keep Reading

Words of warning

Posted October 8, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Paul speaks up here, convinced that his friends need to be on guard against a bad influence.... Keep Reading

Repetition as Safeguard

Posted October 7, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |5 Comments

Repetition allows us to re-engage with the mystery and wonder of our faith ... and with the person who stands at the center of our faith, Jesus. To paraphrase one commentator, we never move on from Jesus, only to a more profound understanding and appreciation of him.... Keep Reading

Repetition

Posted October 6, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |3 Comments

Paul didn't mind repeating himself in his letter to his friends. After delving deeply into theology and service, he circles back to his theme of joy: "rejoice in the Lord!"... Keep Reading

Hoarding Relationships

Posted October 3, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

When we participate in the bigger gospel story, we learn how to be close to people even when they're out of sight. Our bonds don't get broken by time or distance. We're freed from the temptation to hoard people like possessions.... Keep Reading

Honor People Like Him

Posted October 2, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

Chatham Church is full of men and women who serve week in and week out, at times at great personal cost. As we read about Epaphroditus and ask "Do we know people like him?" our answer is a resounding "Yes!"... Keep Reading

The Cost of Service

Posted October 1, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |0 Comments

In Jesus Christ, you are secure even when you're not safe. Your value is secure, so you can take risks. Your relationships are secure, so you can speak the truth to power. Your eternal destiny is secure, so you can sacrifice your temporary comfort and safety.... Keep Reading

A Relationship Generating Story

Posted September 30, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

The gospel story is a relationship generator. It brings people together across class and ethnic lines, across gender barriers and political divides, even across generation gaps.... Keep Reading

Faith Motivated Service

Posted September 29, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

When God gives us new life in Christ, he doesn't just shape our actions, he also shaped our motives. He does this because God cares about who we're becoming, not just about what we're doing.... Keep Reading

Shine like stars

Posted September 26, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

Where in the sky has the Lord placed you? Where is the Lord calling you to shine?... Keep Reading

Blameless and Pure

Posted September 25, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |6 Comments

When we become followers of Christ, we become children of God. And there are certain behaviors that just are not tolerated in God's family. Paul is helping his friends to see this so they don't get led astray, confusing maturity with grumpiness.... Keep Reading

Grumbling and Arguing

Posted September 24, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |3 Comments

Grumbling and arguing reveal what's really going on inside of us. They're red flags, warning lights. They reveal that our process of working out our salvation is going astray. Something has hijacked our working our of our salvation.... Keep Reading

Working out and Working in

Posted September 23, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

God is the primary actor. And all of the important things that happen as you work out your salvation happen in the light of the larger work that God's doing in and around you.... Keep Reading

Fear and Trembling

Posted September 22, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |5 Comments

Christ goes before us and above us and beneath us and beside us. Our fear and trembling come from doing our work in front of our Master.... Keep Reading

The Lord My Shelter: Philippians 2:1

Posted September 17, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |2 Comments

The safety Christ provides doesn't mean that we'll never be wounded or that we'll never experience pain. But it does mean that our pain and woundedness don't have the last word on us. Jesus does.... Keep Reading

Courage with Christ: Philippians 2:1a

Posted September 16, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |1 Comments

Paul patiently reminds the Philippians that their union with Christ is a larger, invisible, permanent reality that generates bold courage … even in the face of trials. ... Keep Reading

Tied to Christ: Philippians 2:1a

Posted September 15, 2014 by: Alex and Steve |4 Comments

Paul reminds his friends of their union with Christ because life makes us all forget. There is a deeper reality than we can see: me in Christ and Christ in me.... Keep Reading

Fear drives us to foolish action. When we're afraid of people, we don't love very well. And we are called to act out of faith, hope and love ... not out of fear.... Keep Reading

The gospel of Christ frees us of our need to perform. We have everything we need in Jesus. And the gospel of Christ calls us to engage the world for good. The way we live seriously matters.... Keep Reading

Whatever happens: Philippians 1:27

Posted September 10, 2014 |3 Comments

We all face uncertain futures. And sometimes, that uncertainty brings our priorities to the surface. All of the "whatever" that can happen can force us to confront what's important to us.... Keep Reading

Recognizing our need for God's grace is essential if we're going to receive God's gift of joy.... Keep Reading

The purpose of Paul's existence - from Paul's perspective - was to serve as a channel of grace to others.... Keep Reading

Endurance: Philippians 1:20

Posted September 5, 2014 |1 Comments

Many of the most powerful answers to prayer involve the provision of strength to endure rather than provision of a path to escape. Your courage may be a sign that God's people are praying for you and that God's Spirit is at work on your behalf.... Keep Reading

The cause of much of our prayerlessness is that we have convinced ourselves that our prayers don't effect outcomes.... Keep Reading

This is one of the great secrets in our battle with jealousy. If you find your jealousy meter ringing uncontrollably, you've discovered something you've pre-decided you needed in order to be joyful. You're not getting it, hence the jealousy.... Keep Reading

Suffering wasn't a surprise twist in their story. Suffering was expected, like a deep darkness before a certain dawn.... Keep Reading

What if God is actually transforming you in the midst of your pain? What if he's having an effect on the lives of people around you as they witness you walk through your dark valley?... Keep Reading

Four practical steps toward cleansing ourselves from jealousy and creating space for more joy in our lives... Keep Reading

Paul's writing helps us break the false dichotomy between head and heart.... Keep Reading

We Are Family: Philippians 1:7

Posted August 27, 2014 |4 Comments

There's a connection between all of us who share in God's grace together.... Keep Reading

Jesus is present in every relationship, every encounter, every interaction ... whether we're aware of him or not.... Keep Reading

Together - Philippians 1:1

Posted August 25, 2014 |12 Comments

All of what we're going to hear about in the Letter to the Philippians happens in community. The Letter is written in community and received in community.... Keep Reading

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