Tuesday, February 26, 2013

ONE VOICE: Love Came Down

Love Came Down by Ben Cantelon proclaims the truth of grace, love and hope in powerful fashion.  I love songs that proclaim what God has done and is doing for us in no uncertain terms! But my personal favorite aspect of this new worship song we’ve been learning is: the way it juxtaposes [word of the day :) means to place two things next to each other for contrasting effect] “my Savior Who’s seated on high” with a Love that “came down and rescued me.”

In yesteryear, when I was in college, I sang in a southern gospel quartet. And one of our standard songs had a chorus that read: “He came down to my level when I couldn’t get up to His…” It’s the same message found in Love Came Down: Jesus the Christ was and is enthroned in heaven on high BUT for a space of time in our history He humbled Himself to our level, knowing we’d never be able to reach Him on our own.

He traded divine glory for a feeding trough, golden streets for dusty Judean roads, a heavenly throne for a Roman cross! Love truly did come down to rescue us, my friend.  This Sunday, let’s be thankful TOGETHER as the family of Christ, purchased at the highest price by the One in Whom we now find life, love and hope.

Find It:
CLICK HERE to download this song from iTunes.

Lifting my voice with yours, Pastor Neil
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Thursday, February 21, 2013

The Quality of Our Church's Worship Depends on YOU!

There are many things that can act as a hindrance to excellent corporate worship. Perhaps the biggest hindrance of all has little to do with the musicians, singers, or pastors (real rich coming from a worship pastor, right?? HA!). May I suggest that each of us, as members of a church, have a great influence over the quality of the worship services we attend. The excellence of our services is directly hindered by believers who: never pray at home…look at church as a source of entertainment…spend Sundays marking off imaginary scorecards rather than truly participating…love tradition (or innovation, for that matter) more than the truth, itself…are too busy to unclutter their minds for worship…are holding onto bitterness, resentments, un-forgiveness, or un-confessed sin.

Like me, you may feel you have little control over how our fellow church attenders choose to live and engage with worship. And yet — since the extent to which this is true of the members of our church does have a tremendous impact on the quality of our worship gatherings — what can we do about it? First, we can make certain we're not personally in this group! Second, we can look around to those we have influence with (friends, family) and, as needed and led by God's Spirit, speak into their lives on this issue. Third, we can pray for our church…that God would draw each member to a purer and more truthful heart for worship. Pray that prayer now, if you would!

Let's all strive to be a place of worship where nonbelievers would be drawn to God by looking around at the folks in the seats and being WOWED by the quality of our worship!

Monday, February 4, 2013

A Fit Vessel...

Have you ever thought about the responsibility of "Connecting people to Christ in a way that leads to life transformation?. Sometimes I think we forget to ask God to change our hearts so that we can be a fit vessel to carry the Gospel to others. The bible says the tongue is like a fire and a spark can burn down a whole forest. In the same way an angry outburst or hurtful words can tear down a bridge we may have started to build that can never be repaired. James Chapt 1 verse 20" For man's anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires". Also James Chapt 3 verse 2"" We all stumble in many ways". But when we stumble and non believers are looking our way it can make us responsible for disconnecting them even more. Faith without works is dead but faith with hypocrisy is death to a soul. There was hypocrisy even in James time. James the half brother of Jesus did not become a believer until after Jesus' death and ressurection. James knew transformation first hand. My prayer is that when the world looks at me they will see a fit vessel and that my tongue will put out a fire instead of starting one. Really the only difference between believers and non believers is the assurance of eternal life with God instead of eternal death without God. As for me I don't want to take the chance of eternity without God. If you think it is a bunch of huey do you really want to take the chance that it is not?

This blog was written by Ruth Crouch one of the Worship Team Coaches at LifeQuest Church.