By Clay Myatt
This week, we are beginning a sermon series on Luke 1-2 to celebrate Advent. So our letters for each of the next few weeks will take a different Advent candle and give a brief reflection on its theme. Today, I’d like to share some thoughts on the biblical idea of hope.
By Steve Gregg
This Sunday is “Generosity Sunday” at Creekside. Going into the holiday season we want to take this Sunday to remember that generosity is a characteristic that should be evident in a Christian. I hope that if you’ve been around Creekside for any amount of time you have heard the Good News that God has been overwhelmingly gracious and generous to us through Jesus: his drawing close to us through the incarnation, his substitutionary death which paid the penalty for all of our rebellion, the resurrection which has given us a new life, and the presence of the Holy Spirit indwelling and empowering us, along with the promise that as His adopted sons and daughters we will one day dwell with Him in a new heavens and a new earth. This sweeping generosity of God is the basis for our generosity. As a result, there are three responses to this grace that in turn provide the soils from which a generous spirit grows.
Every once in a while I find myself telling parents with younger kids that it's okay to admit that sometimes the diaper-changing stage of parenting is miserable. Some older parents may remember that stage fondly. Not me. I far prefer the "I-can-do-it-myself-but-I-still-think-you're-the-best-Dad-ever" stage. Or the "look-at-me-I-can-ride-a-bike-without-training-wheels" stage. And especially the "hey-16-year-old-driver-please-pick-up-some-groceries" stage. Call me selfish — you'd be right!
Wednesday morning I read an article entitled "When Parenting Isn't Enjoyable" by Kristen Wetherell that helped me put my selfishness in perspective and (more importantly) point me to Christ. I'd encourage you to read the whole article, but here are some excerpts I found most helpful...
By Michael Roop
This Sunday, churches all around the world will celebrate World Orphan Sunday. This is a day set aside to remind ourselves that we worship a God who is “Father to the fatherless” (Psalm 68:5). All throughout Scripture, we see God’s special love for the vulnerable, for those who have no voice of their own.
We, who once were spiritual orphans, are recipients of this very love. Paul tells us that Christians “have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, ‘Abba! Father!’” (Romans 8:15). This tender term abba, not unlike daddy, characterizes our relationship with the Father because we are united with Christ by the Spirit. What a wonderful truth!
By Michael Roop
“And the angel said to me, ‘Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.’” As John hears these words, he is encouraged to look upon the ultimate wedding reception. What a sight it must have been! A people from every tribe, nation, and tongue gathered at the table, feasting in celebration of the goodness of the God who saved them.
This is one of the reasons I love serving at the annual International Friendship Thanksgiving Banquet, which is coming up on Saturday, November 23. In a very unique way, the multitude of nations, languages, ethnicities, and backgrounds who gather for this event gives us an appetizer for the true Feast, the one that is yet to come.