January 10. 2020
Good morning Journey South Bay!
Happy 2020 everyone! I
#1) Do you want to improve a relationship with someone? Pray for them. Do you want to serve and love someone better? Pray for them. Do you want to stop being so critical toward others? Pray for them. Jesus modeled for us what it looks like to pray for others in His amazing prayer from John 17. We will be looking at that prayer this Sunday as I continue our series Praying in 2020 with a message Praying for Others. Hope you can join us. Services at 9 and 10:45 am.
#2) There is nothing more important for you in 2020 than to know Jesus better. In a little over two weeks we are launching an all church campaign to help people do just that! As a church family we will be going through the entire life of Christ as recorded for us in the Gospel of Mark. And we will do it all by finishing just before Easter! I have put together daily devotional readings through the entire book along with Sunday sermons that will introduce the section of Scripture we will be reading individually during that particular week. On top of that, there will be small group discussion guides to highlight a reading from that week as well. So get ready! On Sunday, January 26th, we kick off our amazing Journey with Jesus. Plan now to be on board for the trip!
#3) Update on Pastor Philip: Thank you for your continued prayers for Philip and his family. He has finished his first round of chemo therapy. It had difficult moments including fluid on the lungs and almost a collapsed lung. However, in the midst of it Christ grace is evident as seen in this excerpt from an email Philip sent a few days ago.
Amber started with Christmas; I’ll end with the New Year. On the last night of the year, we looked at each other and basically said, “glad to be done with that year!” But that still left us with this question, "How are you supposed to look forward to a year of medically incurable cancer?”
The answer has to be here: not with our physical eyeballs. Our physical eyes will have plenty to see in the year ahead that will not look good. If we set our hopes for the year ahead on things that we can see, this might not be cause for champagne and streamers.
But, if we can determine to be on the lookout for things that are unseen, invisible realities, spiritual developments, this could be — I plain declared it to Amber — I believe 2020 will be our family’s best year yet! Don’t these verses sum it up?
"So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.” (2 Corinthians 4:16–18)
And these verses are not just for our New Year. If your falling-apart-on-the-surface life is actually hidden in the invisible but real person of Christ, this is as much for you, too.
Looking ahead by faith and not sight,
What encouraging words from our brother! Let’s join him in keeping our eyes on the unseen!
Yours in Christ,