Glory to God!
In response to God's word to us for this year, we are looking at ways to put reconciliation into practice and are studying Danny Silk's book entitled, Keep your love on!" together as a church. Last week we began our 6-week study by preaching on key themes from the book, meeting together in small groups to discuss the book and encouraging one another to strengthen our relationships, improve our communication and learn to set healthy boundaries. We are excited about the enthusiasm and involvement of almost the entire church and we are confident that these 6 weeks will be extremely helpful for every one of us to learn to connect and love better.
Three Sundays ago, Alexander shared a message entitled, "The power of choice" in which he compared the lives of Jesus and Judas to identify what makes people live powerful and victorious lives or powerless lives as victims. Looking at how Jesus was intentional about His choices and how He took responsibility for every choice He made, we noted how powerful people live and serve others in humility to empower others. Conversely we saw how Judas lived a powerless life as a consumer that led to his turning his back on his Master because he himself became mastered by selfishness, disillusionment, disappointment and greed. Alexander explored the glorious truth that just as the believer is chosen by God, so every person has the power to choose God and others to be reconciled, connected and to keep one's love on.
Two Sundays ago, Richard encouraged us to make sure that we not only go through the book but that we use the 6 weeks to learn the principles in Danny Silk's book in such a way as to understand, relate to and apply the principles to our lives. In his message entitled, "The evidence of love" Richard showed us in John's first letter how John describes those who have received eternal life and what the evidence that accompanies salvation should be. In particular, Richard pointed out the difference between knowing about the Father's love and actually receiving His love in such a way that it influences one's life (see 1 Jn 2:15,16). Just as the apostle Paul rejoiced in seeing the fruit of the Gospel, so John's concern was that the Gospel was bearing fruit in the lives of the believers (see 1 Thess 1:2-10; 1 Jn 5:13). Richard then spoke to us about how love must replace fear in our relationships since perfect love drives out the fear of punishment (1 Jn 4:16-19; Lk 7:36-50).
Last Sunday, Frances spoke to us about the "Foundation of Healthy Relationships" as we looked at our core needs that can only be met in relationship. Frances showed us that the core needs of love and acceptance, security and significance that make up our identity were affected through the Fall leaving mankind with a void that can only be filled with God. We saw how God as a relational Being, created mankind for relationship and how we need God and one another to live godly lives in His image. Frances showed us how God satisfies our core needs and how we need to develop relational core values that help us strengthen our relationships.
We praise God for teaching us how to strengthen our relationships, improve our communication and build healthy boundaries as we allow the Holy Spirit to lead us and learn new tools to keep our love on. Hallelujah!
24.02 - 05.04: 6-week "Keep your love on" project
25.04: Seminar with Alexander Blair at Alt-Hausen 34
07.06: Baptismal service at 11:00 (location to be decided)
21.06: Joint summer celebration with CZF and Quelle des Lebens