Thursday, 17 June 2021 16:21
The Church - Under ConstructionWritten by Jeron Parkins
The people of Jesus are described in the Bible with a variety of metaphors: We are a Body (see for instance, Romans 12; 1 Corinthians 12), a Community (1 Corinthians 12:13; 2nd Corinthians 3:17, 13:13; our common participation in the Holy Spirit has brought us together in communion with one another), A Family (1 Timothy 3:15; we are described as brothers and sisters). The church of Jesus is also described using agricultural images (John 10:1-8, 15:1-11; we are God’s sheep, we are branches of the vine). Interestingly the church can also be thought of in architectural terms (1 Corinthians 3:16-7; Ephesians 2:19-22; 1 Peter 2:4-5). In 1 Corinthians 3:9 the Apostle Paul mixes metaphors: “For we are co-workers in God’s service; you are God’s field, God’s building.” Typically in the New Testament the word “church” means a local assembly of followers of Jesus who meet together on a regular basis. Sometimes the word “church” takes on a bigger scope, like in Matthew 16:18 when Jesus said: “I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” The church is found in a local group of people who meet in Jesus’ name and the church is universal, all the people of Jesus, in all places, at all times. The understanding of the word depends on the context. Pondering this group of metaphors describing the church tells me that you and I are part of something bigger than ourselves. We often define our Christianity in individualistic ways, whereas the biblical authors were much more prone to talk about us in corporate, group terms. We believers are connected, built on, united, growing, related, producing in and through Jesus Christ. We were never meant to be saved and then be isolated from the church. We were never meant to be alone as we walk in faith. If we are constantly experiencing Christianity as a solo act we are doing it wrong. You and I were saved though by the grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ to be incorporated into a Body, to be united in Community, to love and serve one another as a Family, to produce Fruit together and to be a Temple where the world can find God.
This week there has been a flurry of construction activity, both inside and outside of the new Christian Education and Community Building. Construction is happening and we are moving closer to the product of a new building. I’m excited to see all the ways that we will be able to use the tool of the new building for ministry and mission. I imagine hundreds and thousands of kids in the coming decades learning about Jesus. I imagine all the fellowship and all the one another ministry that is going to take place year after year as the church assembles formally and informally in the name of the Lord. I see in my mind’s eye the multitude of classes and seminars and laughter and tears as people are transformed and built up in Christ. May the building construction be blessed by God to be used for soul construction!
In keeping with the construction metaphor, let us remember today that Christ is building his church and let’s find ways to participate in the mission. He is building people like you and I into an indestructible, eternal, glorious assembly which the passing worldly trio of sin, death and hell can’t touch. As we participate in this local body and we understand that we have our place in the communion of the saints, may we also contribute to the growth of the church. Jesus has sent us to be his representatives, to be his witnesses and ambassadors, to share the gospel and invite people to be united with Jesus and enter his Kingdom. Jesus is making for himself a people of his very own through the gospel. He is building his church through people being born again. We are called to go to work in his name, calling people to be made new in Jesus Christ.
In keeping with the construction metaphor, let us remember today that we are a piece of work! We are God’s workmanship created in Christ Jesus to do good works (Ephesians 2:10). God is still shaping us and transforming us into the people he wants us to be, and praise God, He who started a work in you will carry it on to completion! (Philippians 1:6). We can participate in our transformation as well as the building up of others. Keep putting yourself in a position to be transformed – which means put yourself into the body, the community, the family of Jesus and allowing the Lord’s people shape and mold you. Put yourself into a position for people to love you and help you grow and get rid of your rough edges. Keep putting yourself under the instruments of the master, putting yourself on the anvil day by day of spending time in the presence of God, putting yourself in the position of being pierced by his Word, inviting the Spirit to search you and show you if there are any sins that need to be confessed and renounced. God has a vision for us building one another up in love, and he calls us all “grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love” (Ephesians 4:15-16).
Here’s some of what’s happening at Living Water in the weeks ahead…
We’re meeting at 9:00 or 10:45 for worship.
We’re going to step away from the Daniel sermon series this Sunday as Pastor Greg preaches a special message.
The Swamp Cooler wasn’t working last Sunday. It will be on this Sunday! Those of use in the office this week have tested it out and it works great!
We’re going to shoot to pass the offering plates starting on June 27, so for tithes and offerings please continue to use the boxes on the lobby walls.
COMMUNITY GROUP LEADERS BBQ June 23
POPCORN & A MOVIE June 25
- JOIN REIGN THIS SUMMER The Youth Group meets Wednesdays from 6:30pm-8:30pm in the Reign building across the street from Sears Hardware Store. Reign is for anyone finishing 5th grade this month through high school. We will begin a new series in June and we will be studying the whole bible in one year! The series is called “Gospel Foundations; A Year Through the Storyline of Scripture.” We will have many activities to participate in this summer so please join us!!
REFER a FRIEND to EAGLE LAKE CAMP
HOST HOMES NEEDED FOR EAGLE LAKE COUNSELORS
There are about 20 Counselors coming to Alamosa to serve the kids at Eagle Lake Camp. If you want to participate in making this Camp Outreach a success but haven’t known how to get involved, hosting counselors would be a great ministry! Pastor Bo can answer any questions you have about hosting requirements and how you can use your gift of hospitality. Here’s a link to sign up to be a host family: https://www.google.com/url?q=https://eaglelakecamps.com/hostfamily/?fbclid%3DIwAR3gMeAo6yLx0hVo430IKGtJKrsYIKxDWBYX5FDyOy-fIMgPaMnZlzUIlK0&source=gmail&ust=1624036675282000&usg=AFQjCNEC0yDnUTt4RbPzE3h-nTMnkQcwcg">https://eaglelakecamps.com/hostfamily/?fbclid=IwAR3gMeAo6yLx0hVo430IKGtJKrsYIKxDWBYX5FDyOy-fIMgPaMnZlzUIlK0
SUMMER ACTIVITY GROUPS
MEN’S THURSDAY MORNING PRAYER BREAKFAST WILL RESUME IN AUGUST
VACATION BIBLE SCHOOL AUGUST 9-13
We have decided to change the dates for VBS this year to August 9-13. Our VBS Director, Brenna Rivale, explains the reasons for the change in this note: Our date changes are due to the Guatemala trip being that same week, as well as Worlds for Quizzing is the week before. I am wanting to make it accessible to everyone, as well as most of my help/volunteers are going to be in Guatemala and I am wanting them to have the opportunity to serve for VBS. This year's VBS theme is “Destination Dig; Unearthing the Truth About Jesus.” Here’s an overview: Kids will unearth more than dirt as they dig up exciting evidence that proves biblical events were not just stories. As junior archaeologists, kids will explore real-life archaeological finds that have helped to uncover the truth about Jesus! Along the way, they’ll discover the truth of Jeremiah 29:13, that God reveals Himself to us when we seek and search for Him with all our hearts.
GLOBAL LEADERSHIP SUMMMIT August 5-6
We’ve hosted the Global Leadership Summit for several years now. Most of those registering have been from the local businesses or city and county employees. It’s been nice to serve our local community by hosting this uplifting and encouraging leadership conference at Living Water. If you want to participate the cost is $99 until July 13th. Click on the following link and when prompted insert this code 21SVTEAM https://www.google.com/url?q=https://register.globalleadership.org/%23/reg/trans/one?invtID%3DEV-LSS2108-MAIN-SVA00028%26orgCustomerID%3D704772%26priorityCD%3D21SVTEAM&source=gmail&ust=1624036675282000&usg=AFQjCNH5jJb67LwLm7ilqC56UN5mcBsydg">https://register.globalleadership.org/#/reg/trans/one?invtID=EV-LSS2108-MAIN-SVA00028&orgCustomerID=704772&priorityCD=21SVTEAM
BRINGING LIFE PROJECT INFO
Thanks for serving the Lord!