Friday, April 25, 2014

The Sunday Set-Up for April 27, 2014

As Winter melts away and Spring brings new life, it’s a time of year when many of us turn our attention towards our yards and our gardens.  It’s time to pull the weeds, till the soil, fertilize and add nutrients to the ground and plant new seeds.  All of this is in preparation for a harvest (of grass or flowers or vegetables). When all is said and done, we can end up spending a significant amount of time and money in order to get our yards and gardens just right.  

In the midst of all of that horticulture, have you ever considered the work and attention your heart needs in order for a harvest to spring forth from it?  Many people haven’t, but Jesus calls us to.  

This Sunday we are kicking off a new sermon series on the Parables of Jesus.  Come and join us as we listen to the stories he told and consider the truths that lie beneath them.   

Reading: Matthew 13:1-23

Bulletin: April 27, 2014

Friday, April 18, 2014

The Sunday Set-Up for Easter Sunday, April 20, 2014

What would it take for everybody in church on Easter to walk away genuinely saying “Thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ?” (1 Corinthians 15:57). Please join me in praying for this awesome and glorious day as we proclaim the hope of the resurrection and issue Christ’s invitation to all to receive and believe. 

Reading: 1 Corinthians 15:50-58

Bulletin: April 20, 2014

Friday, April 11, 2014

The Sunday Set-Up for April 13, 2014

We wave palms on Palm Sunday. Why? The palm branch was a national symbol and a typical way that kings were hailed and honored in Israel. Think of it like waving a national flag. The disciples welcomed Jesus in on Palm Sunday with great enthusiasm and patriotism. Of course we know that the events of that week would ultimately lead to the cross. Have you ever thought about what it means to welcome Jesus as King in your own life? How readily do we truly accept his rule in every area and endeavor of our lives? Join me this Sunday as we examine the meaning of Palm Sunday and how Jesus might more fully rule over our hearts as our great and welcome King.

Reading: Luke 19:28-44

Bulletin: April 19, 2014

Friday, April 4, 2014

The Sunday Set-Up for April 6, 2014

This is not a paraclete! 

How do you think about the Holy Spirit? Jesus takes time on the night before he dies to instruct his disciples on the work of the Holy Spirit and the implications for their lives. The word he uses to describe the Holy Spirt is the greek word, “paraclete” which literally means "to call alongside.” What does it mean for our church and for you that the Holy Spirit is one who is “called alongside” us? 
Join me this Sunday as we look more closely at the third member of the Trinity, the person of the Holy Spirit.

Bulletin: April 6, 2014

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

The Gift of Time

by Hampton Pitts

As I fondly look back upon my past four years of service on Apostles Leadership Council and ponder my involvement soon coming to an end, I am reminded of my original thoughts and emotions when I was first nominated and asked to join in service. There is no doubt I was flattered and honored to be considered. Our church has an amazing group of leaders and the Leadership Council alumni list is full of men and women I greatly admire. But inside, I selfishly worried about my ability to truly give one of my most precious personal commodities. Time.

Like all of us, I had a lot going on outside of church with commitments to family, kid’s activities, work responsibilities. The list goes on and on. I wondered if I could give such a gift of time and be committed to four years of service. I spent much time in prayer and ultimately felt His strong calling to commit to this service. But inside, I think I still wondered if it would be worth it. Looking back now, I am amazed and humbled once again by God’s divine plan and how he shapes and molds and blesses us if we will just listen to His will.

What I envisioned as a gift of my time, has been totally the opposite. Serving on the Leadership Council has blessed and nurtured me far more than any value I could ever place on the time I have spent being involved. The love and comradery of the other members and our Church leaders and Pastors has been a true gift back to me and is something I will miss once I step out of service. Yes, we work hard, and we wrestle with tough issues at times. But mostly we love and support each other, and ask God to help us do His will in supporting our Church’s mission. And through it all, I was constantly reminded that no gift I could give would ever come close to the gift of His grace given to me.

It’s that time at Apostle’s when we have a calling for nominations for new members to join our Leadership Council. I hope and pray you will carefully consider your role in this process. Whether it’s nominating someone you think would serve us well, or considering service if you are nominated yourself, or just being in prayer for His will to be fulfilled for our Church in this process. We can all give a gift of time to that. 

“I became a servant of this gospel by the gift of God’s grace given me through the working of His power”  Ephesians 3:7

Missionaries of Apostles: Brian & Lauren Mann - Greek InterVarsity

Brian & Lauren Mann,
with Mackenzie and Sydney
  • "You don't understand... he's THAT guy!" This statement was made a few months ago by Jesse, a student leader, at Greek Conference Boston. Jesse leads the ministry in Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity at the University of New Hampshire (UNH). After an injury caused him to leave the UNH football team, he felt led to focus that energy on his relationships with the guys in his fraternity. He has been growing in his faith as he's met with a Greek IV staff and brought 3 friends from Pikes with him to GC Boston, one of which was Clint.

  • Clint is whom Jesse was describing in the previous quote, and it seems he has a reputation not only in his fraternity but all over campus for being the stereotypical party guy. Because of Jesse's faithful witness and the opportunity the weekend provided, Clint made a decision to follow Jesus. Including another Pike, 2 of the 3 friends made decisions this weekend! In the week after his return to campus, word had spread that something happened with Clint and the whole Greek System at University of New Hampshire is curious about what could cause this kind of change. Praise God for His work and join me in praying that not only would Clint and all those who made decisions be strengthened, but that God would use their stories of transformation to catalyze even more momentum on campus.
    That is a snapshot of what we are seeing happen all over the country. Jesse caught a vision and then took risks to be used by God in his friends' lives. Fraternity and sorority students are clearly longing for more in life and when a community of students exists on campus to help their friends discover God's offer, we see the response. Greek InterVarsity has been one of the fastest growing segments of InterVarsity, and we've seen the number of students involved grow by 93% over the past 10 years. This was a record setting year through our conferences with 1044 students attending from 93 campuses.  The biggest challenge has been keeping up with all God is doing and saying yes to the right opportunities.  At any time, we have a few dozen campuses that with the right coaching and assistance could see huge change. The challenge is that the window of opportunity to launch something only lasts a year or two while those key students are on campus. It's exhilarating to be a part of guiding all of this from my role as National Director and deciding how to invest the ministry's resources wisely to capitalize on momentum.  In addition to the campuses I am directly coaching, the team I supervise guides the work on campus as well as hosts the conferences and events to come alongside.

    Thank you for the role Apostles as a Church and so many individuals within the church play in helping us be able to say 'yes' to the opportunities God provides that are impacting students, through planting new campuses and launching new conferences to reach and equip students.

    • If you want to read more stories about God’s work in students through Greek InterVarsity head here or check out more information through our website.

    • Ways to pray for the Manns and Greek InterVarsity
    • 1. Pray for God to solidify and grow the 300+ students who made decisions for Christ like Clint did through our conferences this year.
    • 2. Pray for the 410 students that felt led by God to be spiritual shepherds for their friends after being trained at one of the Greek Conferences.
    • 3. Pray for the 20+ previously unconnected campuses that attended one of our events that we know which to invest further in over the next couple years.
    • 4. Pray for God to continue to provide the staff, funds, and wisdom needed for our mission.