The hands & feet of the Body of Christ at South Church. The horizontal mission of the Church must be rooted in vertical love & knowledge of the Lord. As Jesus said, "Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks." Restore families seek to live out what is learned through Proclaim & Sustain.
Followers of Jesus, linked in arms, facing outward: growing in Truth, living on mission, sharing life together.
Praise God for making us family! Like any relations, we grow as we patiently interact: we celebrate our triumphs together, encourage one another through our failures, and strive alongside in prayer even when relations are strained. As we humble ourselves and confess with love, our Lord enables strengthening reconciliation, making our fellowship all the sweeter!
We were thankful Susan Stephens was able to join us this past Tuesday night. Her metamorphosis is visible and beautiful. We are hopeful for her in these new beginnings. God is faithful to complete the good work He has begun in her, in all of us.
We had such a huge group, even with a few out on vacation! Soon we won't fit anywhere but "Sweet 100"!!! Praise the Lord!
We continue praying for wisdom and patience with our wayward children, resting our cares on Him who cares for us, for the saving grace they need and we need. Please remember them in prayer: for the Holy Spirit's conviction of Truth in their inner man, for confession of sin, and for faith in Jesus; the only name whereby we must be saved. He is on the move! He is showing us all the wonderful things He has done and is doing, building strong foundations, by His Word faithfully taught, for our hope in His/our future Glory! How blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord.
Pray with us, as well, for the defeat of the devil's wiles to deceive in our world. Lord raise up teachers determined and committed to lift up the God of the Bible and no seeker-friendly imposters. Thank you that we are guarded by your Spirit through the Word of Truth. Cause us to cling to Christ and rightly represent the Son to others in need of Him. God do so in all our Restore families and Your Church universal. Thank You for our faithful pastor, deacons and elders.
Well, church family, I know it's been a while since you've all heard from the Monday night Restore family and our "happenings", and although maybe out of sight in the World Wide Web, we have definitely not been out of mind in our meeting together. In fact, the reason I'm writing on our behalf again is because my appreciation of our Monday gatherings, and the family that is truly being built and strengthened as a result, has been at the forefront of my mind a lot lately. As Logan preached last Sunday, and God brought about His words for us at His sovereignly appointed time, we are family. United by Christ and set apart (despite being Gentiles) for His purpose in this world, yes, but also for His purpose in building up the Church even. I'm not sure I ever recognized how important this unity is, but as we learn more together and grow in our understanding of just who Jesus really is, the more dots get connected in this mystery. Praise the Lord He has chosen to reveal it to us, little by little, knowing how feeble and forgetful we are. Perhaps, you are like me and have always focused more on the mission of The Great Commission in "going and making disciples" (and we should not ignore this by any means), but have failed to see the significance in building up the body, specifically relationships within the body: unity between brothers and sisters. Thank you Jesus that our eternity is secured, but... if you are reading this, and you are a true believer, our eternity is secured TOGETHER, whether we like, dislike, or truly love one another. Kinda like a marriage that God says never to separate... There will be no "divorce" of even our spiritual family in eternity which brings more meaning to growing in love and in our relationships now between each other. We are going to live together forever. I personally love that. And besides, it pleases and glorifies our Father! What other goal do we really have?
Not coincidentally, at the same time that I have been feeling immense appreciation for our Restore (and church) family in general and Logan preaching on unity, I came to a chapter in a book I'm reading called, "Love Your Brothers and Sisters". Listen to this excerpt from Edward Welch in that chapter:
It's interesting to note that the most explicit biblical teaching on spiritual warfare is found in the book (Ephesians 6) that emphasizes unity. Satan's most prominent strategy is to fracture and divide.
I can confidently say that I love each of our Restore family members, child or adult, as a true family member "in the most intimate sense of the word", as God designed it to be. Dare I say even more intimate than my unbelieving biological family members. This has only happened as a result of Christ's work in me, and in all of us, and in His faithful allowing and causing us to continue meeting together as He actually commands (Hebrews 10.25).
If you are not a part of a Restore family yet, in love I appeal to you to become part of one soon. By God's design, we desire community and a relationship with you and your children, brothers and sisters, and we want and need to grow together with you in faith and grace. You have been given gifts that will help build us up as well. One last excerpt from that same chapter which speaks so accurately of our Restore family gatherings:
Amen to that! I love you family.