Worship with the World

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It is always amazing to me that no matter where I go in the world and gather with other believers, no matter language barriers or equipment limitations all you need to feel like family is to start worshiping the father.

I’ve been to many different nations speaking many different languages, but the moment music starts and the worship begins you sense that same familiar presence. The presence that binds us together. The Spirit of God gathering with His kids and connecting them in a common purpose to declare His goodness. Literally every time it puts me in awe of God and His family and I immediately realize how truly big our family is. When you worship this week whether in a large gathering or small group realize that all over this planet you have brothers and sisters doing the same.

You are not alone.

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Oh Father Where art Thou?

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I am inspired today by the sheer influence a dad has in the life of his children. A power, when used for good, that can bring out the best in them.

We recently hosted a Daddy/Daughter dance at our church. It was a night filled with fun, laughter, and true connection.

At first I was concerned that the night would be incredibly awkward, due to the fact that the relationship between dads and kids resembles a clumsy person trying to walk across a frozen pond. Legs and arms flailing in all different directions towards an ultimate end of landing hard on your backside bruised and cold.

I have to admit at first it felt a little awkward, but all it took was a little food, good music and talking and before long the place was buzzing with life.

When the dance floor opened, to my amazement, it was packed with dads and daughters kicking up their heals to the Cupid shuffle which is an educational experience for all the dads or a little two stepping to Amarillo by morning, and some moving and grooving to “treasure” by Bruno Mars.

It was a sight to see. Dad’s uninhibited for the purpose of showing their daughters a good time.

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To my great pleasure there was more than a good time going on. As I was dancing with my own daughters, I looked around. I saw dads laughing uncontrollably with their daughters and daughters basking in the glory of their dads glorious uninhibited display of affection, being there just for them. I saw dads teaching daughters how to two step and daughters teaching dads how to not look completely ridiculous while on the dance floor. Not sure we learned that lesson.

More than that I saw dads showing their daughters how they should be treated by a man. The right kind of touch, the right kind of words. The literal display of how truly valuable a girl is. In a world where the objectification of women is at an all time high these dads were showing their daughters that they are not a mere object but they are a valuable, loved, revered individual who is so valued by her father she can not be trivialized by the whims of a lust driven society.

The power of an approving father far surpasses the influence of a culture of confusion if the father can be found. No I don’t mean is the father in the house? No I don’t mean does the father show up for performances? I mean is the father intentionally valuing the daughter in such a way that she will not question her value when faced with the unscrupulous agenda of modernity?

Oh father where art thou when she needs a shoulder to cry on? Oh father where art thou when she needs an “at a girl” to keep going. Oh father where art thou when she needs the confidence to stand in the face of highly pressurized times that demands she devalue herself for societal approval?

Fathers let us be found in an enthralling dance with the treasures of our legacy. The precious jewels in our keeping. Dancing the dance of love, driven with a need to know that our girls will be strong, decisive, assured and confident. They can face the world without trivializing themselves.

Dads talk to your girls, inspire, and challenge them but above all love them. Yes at the expense of your own comfort. Yes at the inconvenience of your time. Yes at the risk of revealing how awkward you really are. Say it, show it, be it.

This power has been given to you use it wisely.

We are Family 3

The Exchange”

Ephesians 1:5 NLT

God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure.

I 18:3-5 NKJV

Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul. And Jonathan took off the robe that was on him and gave it to David, with his armor, even to his sword and his bow and his belt. So David went out wherever Saul sent him, and behaved wisely. And Saul set him over the men of war, and he was accepted in the sight of all the people and also in the sight of Saul’s servants. 

Note:  I truly believe that all humanity craves relationship.  As we have stated before in this series God created man to have relationship with Him first and foremost, but then he also created us with a need for others.  We weren’t created to be alone, or isolated, or without true, real family and friends.

>Have we trivialized Friendship, have we minimized the relational aspects of family?

True, deep, meaningful relationships are what we are all in need of and what we are all seeking.  We all want and need someone who we can trust, have confidence in and with whom we can be confident.  Someone with whom we can be completely honest and vulnerable, holding nothing back.  Someone who does not seek to judge but to love, Somone who is not set to destroy but to protect.  Somenone does not enable but holds us accountable.

One of the greatest concerns I have for our present and especially our future generations is that we seem to be increasingly disconnected.  

At what point can we truly be real with one another?  

At what point will we quit observing life through technology and start living life through deep, vulnerable, real relationships.  

DONT MAKE THE MISTAKE:

Please hear me well when I say, I am not telling anyone to have deep, vulnerable relationship with everyone.  If we are to truly benifit from this kind of relationship it has to be a trusted, two way, real, relationship.  There has to be an exchange.

Jonathan and David, made an exchange, that was initiated by Jonathan.  Their relationship is the personification of the covenent relationship God has for us, and that he wants for us together.  

>Jonathan and David Loved each other.  Friendship at this level is like having a second self.

>Jonathan and David lived for each other.  Friendship at this level is to defer to the other for their benefit and betterment.

>Jonathan and David had a covenant.  Friendship at this level is much more than a human contract this is a spiritual connection that binds the relationship togeher based on faith not fear.

COVENANT is the GREAT EXCHANGE

Jesus Did the exact same thing for us.

2 Corinthians 5:16-21 MSG

Because of this decision we don’t evaluate people by what they have or how they look. We looked at the Messiah that way once and got it all wrong, as you know. We certainly don’t look at him that way anymore. Now we look inside, and what we see is that anyone united with the Messiah gets a fresh start, is created new. The old life is gone; a new life burgeons! Look at it! All this comes from the God who settled the relationship between us and him, and then called us to settle our relationships with each other. God put the world square with himself through the Messiah, giving the world a fresh start by offering forgiveness of sins. God has given us the task of telling everyone what he is doing. We’re Christ’s representatives. God uses us to persuade men and women to drop their differences and enter into God’s work of making things right between them. We’re speaking for Christ himself now: Become friends with God; he’s already a friend with you. How? you ask. In Christ. God put the wrong on him who never did anything wrong, so we could be put right with God. 

1.  Jesus made a covenant with us.

He exchanged his Majesty for our Humanity

He exchanged is Dignity for our humility

He exhanged our filthy rags of sin, for His righteous robes.

He was the sacrifice, He shed his blood, He Knew no sin, but became sin, so that we might become righteous.

He made the covenent eternal with His commitment to Never leave us or forsake us.

2.  Jesus wants this kind of covenent between the members of His family.

To Love each other as we do our own soul

To live FOR each other

To commit to care for, to fight for, to get vulnerable with, to have confidence in each other.

3.  Jonathan and David were not blood relatives but were blood brothers but the blood of the covenent and the Exchange of Love.

We are Family.

When people see you they see me
When people see me they see you
When people see us THEY SEE JESUS

Do you want a friend that sticks closer than a brother?  Are you looking for love, real love?  Do you desperately need someone to be on your side?  JESUS and His Family Are YOUR ANSWER.
 

Love, Loyalty, and Life Together

Ephesians 1:5 NLT

God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure.
 
2 Samuel 23:13-17 MSG

One day during harvest, the Three parted from the Thirty and joined David at the Cave of Adullam. A squad of Philistines had set up camp in the Valley of Rephaim. While David was holed up in the Cave, the Philistines had their base camp in Bethlehem. David had a sudden craving and said, “Would I ever like a drink of water from the well at the gate of Bethlehem!” So the Three penetrated the Philistine lines, drew water from the well at the gate of Bethlehem, and brought it back to David. But David wouldn’t drink it; he poured it out as an offering to God, saying, “There is no way, God, that I’ll drink this! This isn’t mere water, it’s their life-blood—they risked their very lives to bring it!” So David refused to drink it. This is the sort of thing that the Three did. 

The flow of family

The relationship between David and these three leaders of the mighty men was pure family. There is no other real way to describe it. 

These men loved David and he loved them.  They were all loyal to the same cause. They all lived their lives together. There is a respect, a selflessness, an honor that exist at a certain level of relationship that just can’t be replaced by any other thing. 

>That is Gods expectation for His family.

Family is all about what we see here in this passage of scripture. Love, loyalty and life together

I think its remarkable that when Father God saved us and made us His children, He also, put us into family, knowing that we need each other. 

At the very beginning when God created Adam, he looked on creation and said everything is good except one thing. “It is not good for man to be alone.

Genesis 2:18 NKJV

 And the Lord God said, “ It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.” 

He created us to belong. We have a need, an internal need to connect with God and others

>Our culture has taught us to be very individualistic but it’s just pure fact we are better together. 

We are family. 

The three things that fuel family are Love, loyalty, and life together 

1. Love

>Deference to other members of the family
>Sacrificing for other members of the family
>Caring, above comfort, and convenience, for others in the family

Family love inspires us to prefer the other members of our family before ourselves.

2. Loyalty

>Not merely a commitment to each other, but more importantly a commitment to the common cause of the family
>Loyalty to what the family is about, which results in a tremendous loyalty to one another. 

David was loyal to God and his greater cause of the kingdom. As was exemplified when he refused to touch Gods anointed even when he had motive and opportunity. It was easy for these men to be loyal because they had seen loyalty in their leader. 

Thought: being loyal to the cause and not merely the person mingles with our love and helps us to see past imaturities, and childish behavior.   

3. Life together 

The family of God is not just some acquaintances, connecting around a statement of faith. We are spiritual relatives bonded by the sacrificial price of Jesus blood. We do life together. We are here for each other. We are family.

We truly need each other. We need to know we can depend on each other. We need to know that someone is watching out for us. 

First Big Question:  are we honoring the Spirit of the family of God by being this kind of family?

Second big question?  Do you have spiritual family today?  Real, true family? Jesus family could be that family, this family could be that family. 

Find out more at http://www.yoursummitchurch.com

The family is here waiting to love you.

We are Family 1

“Everybody Needs Somebody”

Ephesians 1:5 NLT

God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure.

Romans 8:15, 16 NLT

So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.” For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children. 

Psalms 68:6 NLT

God places the lonely in families; he sets the prisoners free and gives them joy…

Galatians 6:10 NLT

Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone—especially to those in the family of faith.

There is a basic need in every human on this planet, everyone wants to belong. 

Family is all about, especially Gods family is all about belonging, it’s all about unconditional love, love that cares. It’s all about being a part of something special. About having each other’s back. It’s about crying together, laughing together, mourning together, celebrating together, operative word being TOGETHER. 

1.  Family means to belong

>Knowing that you are not alone in life
>Knowing that there is somewhere and someone you’re connected to. 
>Knowing that we matter to someone

2. Family means unconditional love

>Love that loves no matter what
>Love that cares
>Love that accepts you where you are but cares too much to leave you there

3. Family means we are here for each other

>I’ll take care of you, you will take care of me
>We pray for each other
>We sacrifice for each other

Family is what Jesus made the church to be, the family of God. Jesus chooses us, adopts us, and places us in family, to belong to him and to each other

The family of God is the safest, most loving, caring place to be. We all want to be a part of something special, this is that thing. 

This is not about joining a church this is about being spiritually connected. The only way to be a part of this family is to be in relationship with our father, which happens by simply accepting and following Jesus. 

If you are a part of this family, lets realize and function in the benifits of it, and if you are not, this is a place where you could belong. 

Thanks

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Packed and ready to go. We
Are on our way to meet with the team and their families who are sending them off today.

Just want to say thanks to all family members, and friends who have and are supporting this team in its efforts to help the people of cambodia.

Thanks to all those who have given to fund our projects and to support these short term missionaries.
I will be posting daily on this trip so you can be part of the trip as it unfolds. So join us as we are used by God to make a difference. Pray for us.

Thanks
David

What’s Important?

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What are you building with your life? Just thinking this morning that building ministry is so very important.

However in order to build effective ministry to others we must first build health into our own lives.

Health questions:

1. Am I remembering my first ministry is to the ones God gave me to steward. My wife and kids.

How can I effectively minister to others if my first responsibility is not met. Our family must be priority. You don’t get healthy by talking about it, you have to work at it.

2. Am I building health into my spiritual, physical, and financial life?

If I’m to be effective for others I must be a healthy me. Not encumbered by self inflicted spiritual, physical and financial lack.

This may seem like a simplistic thought but I am personally tired of all the casualties of an out of balance unhealthy approach to ministry in the name of reaching others. Reaching others is of major importance but will be illegitimate at the cost of personal health and completely ineffective.

So let’s build health and reach the world.