Faith Center Youth Group

This past year has been an ongoing season of growth with the awesome students that we collectively call “the youth.”

Between road trips to Boise or Eugene for various concerts and events, winter retreats at Elkhanah and summer camps at Crestview, baptisms, barbecues, waterparks, trampoline parks, movie nights and dance parties; we’ve been blessed with many opportunities to grow together as family.

While those are always great fun, I have to admit that I’ve been floored with constant encouragement throughout our regular weekly meetings.  This year, in addition to our Tuesday and Wednesday nights, we have also been meeting in young men’s and women’s small groups to really dive deeper into God’s word and allowing iron to sharpen iron.  Friday nights have also been instrumental, as our community’s youths and leaders have rallied together for 5th Quarter Friday’s!  With an average of 50-60 students at each event, we have seen a lot of fruit by way of outreach and discipleship.

That is the heart of our youth group right now; to continue loving others while helping each other to walk in the love our Father has with each of us.

 

Tyler Delphous

Together

“Eliashib the high priest and his fellow priests went to work and rebuilt the Sheep Gate. They dedicated it and set its doors in place, building as far as the Tower of the Hundred, which they dedicated, and as far as the Tower of Hananel. The men of Jericho built the adjoining section, and Zakkur son of Imri built next to them.” (Nehemiah 3:1-2 NIV)

I love the book of Nehemiah! The story of the Israelites return from captivity to their home in Jerusalem and the subsequent rebuilding of the walls around their city is inspiring! It’s a beautiful picture of Gods faithfulness and goodness.

As I was reading this recently there was something that hit me afresh from this section. It was the phrase …built next to them. If you read this scripture you will see the Israelites begin to rebuild the wall in sections. Each one working on their part of the whole. Whether you were priests or from distant areas didn’t matter.

They worked shoulder to shoulder building what God wanted rebuilt. Shoulder to shoulder….

There is something powerful when Gods people work together, shoulder to shoulder to accomplish His work, His calling. It is in these times when we have a common purpose and come together that lasting ties of friendship, fellowship and heart happen. There is always more than just getting the job done when we work together!

I want to encourage each of us in this season ahead to look for opportunities to

serve shoulder to shoulder with your family here. To pray and seek where that might take place. Whether the Harvest Party, Children’s Ministry, Loaves and Fishes, our upcoming Christmas Fair, Southside or… wherever, you will be blessed and find beautiful fellowship and relationship waiting!

The Heart of Worship

Worship is an open unguarded response to God by which we declare His worth in an intimate manner, leaving Him room to touch us and flood us with His peaceful presence.

Our public worship is going to be a reflection of our private worship…

Jack Hayford says it in this way… “There are no talent shows in heaven.”

God is NOT judging us according to our talents, but rather the content of our hearts!!

WHAT IS PRAISE/WORSHIP?

PRAISE = “to commend, to applaud or magnify” For the Christian, praise to God is an expression of Worship, Lifting-up & Glorifying the Lord.

WORSHIP = in English, to ascribe worth, to pay homage, to reverence. In Hebrew, the word most commonly translated “worship” in the Old Testament means “to prostrate (oneself)”

PROSTRATE = in Webster’s, stretched out with face on the ground in adoration or submission, bow down, fall down flat, do reverence. In Greek, the word most commonly used in the NT (for worship) means “to kiss the hand, to prostrate oneself.

WHY WORSHIP GOD?

a. He is worthy of our praise: Revelation 4:11 – You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for You created all things, and by Your will they were created and have their being.

b. The Word commands us to: Psalm 95:6-7 – 6 Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker; 7 for His is our God and we are the people of His pasture, and the flock under His care.

Psalm 150:6 – Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.

A. When?

Hebrews 13:15 – Through Jesus, therefore, let us CONTINUALLY offer to God a sacrifice of praise — the fruit of lips that confess His Name.

Psalms 146:2 – I will praise the Lord all my life; I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.

B. How?

John 4:23,24 – 23 Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshippers will worship the Father in Spirit and Truth, for they are the kind of worshippers the Father seeks. 24 God is Spirit, and His worshippers must worship in Spirit and in Truth.

There are many different ways of praising & worshipping God… singing, clapping, shouting, dancing, playing instruments, lifting up our hands, verbally praising/worshipping God, etc.

It is HOW … we worship! It is HOW… we Praise! Is it onto God? Is it in Spirit and in Truth?

C. Worship Him with Your Lives

Romans 12:1-2 – “Therefore I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship. 2 Do not conform any longer to the pattern of the world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”

We NEED to Worship God more than just what we DO ON SUNDAYS…

Our relationships/ our lifestyle/ our thought-life… should be an ACT OF WORSHIP.

True Worship is understanding WHO God is and responding to Him. It is an intimate and transparent moment where our hearts are totally unguarded before the Father.

In His Grip

Pastor Jeffry

 

 

 

The Shadow of the Almighty

October 12th was another Sunday morning away from my precious Church family, again.  The past two months have been hard in so many ways, but one of the hardest has been my inability to be in the House of the Lord with my family at Faith Center listening to Pastor David bring the Word.  I got my hopes up of being able to come for a weekend visit recently, but they are concerned my immune system and the “hole in my leg” which is slowly healing, should not risk exposure in a large gathering of people.  (I had to tell my Doctor we hug a lot at Faith Center, and oh how I miss your hugs! J)

So on this Sunday morning I awoke feeling homesick and it seemed that all my present circumstance was engulfed in darkness.  Darkness; I have always dreaded the darkness and I love sunrises.  But as the melancholy sought to overwhelm me, suddenly the Holy Spirit brought to my heart these words found in Psalm 91:1-2.  “He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.”

And then I heard the precious Holy Spirit whisper these words to me.  “My child, the darkness you have felt all these many weeks in Boise is not evidence of My absence, nor is the darkness the result of satanic spirits.  The darkness is in fact “The shadow of the Almighty.”  You have been in a battle which you know cannot be won in your own strength and because this is true you have come to me again and again amidst your pain and suffering, yet you continue to experience “darkness.”  So I declare to you IT IS NOT DARKNESS ASSAILING YOU MY SON, IT IS MY SHADOW YOU ARE ABIDING UNDER!

The Lord went on to say, “Never lose sight of this My Word to you in the months ahead!  Declare with confident faith, “He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.” (Psalms 91:1-2 NKJV)

Beloved family in the faith, the Word of God goes on to say in Psalm 139:11-12, “If I say, “Surely the darkness shall fall on me,” even the night shall be light about me; indeed, the darkness shall not hide from You, but the night shines as the day; the darkness and the light are both alike to You.”

As this Word came into my heart early on Sunday October 12th, the whole nature of my circumstance began to change.  I am not, nor are you, “drowning in darkness.”  Rather, the darkness is in fact “The shadow of the Almighty.”  I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.”

I will say it again, “I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.”

We love and miss you more than mere words can describe, but while we wait, we are all abiding under the shadow of the Almighty!

Your “Care Pastor” in exile…

Pastor Ted

Christmas Basket Offering

Each year beginning in mid November we begin to collect names of those in our community and our church family that may need help during the Christmas season with food and gifts. A key part of this process is our Christmas basket offering. This one time offering is used to purchase the food basket from Grocery Outlet. Would you pray about taking part in this offering this year? What an incredible season in front of us to practically show the love of Christ to those around us! On Sunday, November 9th, Please make checks out to Faith Center and put Christmas Food Baskets on the memo line of your check. Thank you!

Vision

“In the twenty-fifth year of our exile, at the beginning of the year, on the tenth of

the month, in the fourteenth year after the fall of the city—on that very day the

hand of the Lord was on me and he took me there. In visions of God he took me

to the land of Israel and set me on a very high mountain, on whose south side

were some buildings that looked like a city. He took me there, and I saw a man

whose appearance was like bronze; he was standing in the gateway with a linen

cord and a measuring rod in his hand. The man said to me, “Son of man, look

carefully and listen closely and pay attention to everything I am going to show

you, for that is why you have been brought here. Tell the people of Israel

everything you see.” (Ezekiel 40:1-4 NIV)

Whenever I get to Ezekiel in my journal reading I heave a deep sigh and thank

God that I am not him! So as I read this book through again I wanted to see it

with fresh eyes. Not just read it to read it and check it off my list.

This section that I copied above is where God is giving Ezekiel the vision for what

the new temple is going to look like. This is a vision with measurements, specifics

and details! Ezekiel’s call was to see this vision and then communicate it to the

people.

Vision. It’s a word that has varied meaning today depending on where you are

coming from. In this context vision means seeing things as God intends them to

be. So having vision from God about our lives, futures or a particular situation

simply means seeing things as God intends.

I was reminded as I read this section of Scripture that God is the God who still

gives vision today. He still directs and gives clarity and purpose in very real ways.

Do you have vision today? Have you asked God to show you things as he would

see them being? I encourage you to seek God for a vision for your own direction.

Ask God to see things as he intends them! He is still very much in the business of

giving vision!

Pastor David

Feed My Sheep

As I was reading my morning devotional this morning I came to John chapter 21.  Jesus asked Peter three times “Do you love me?”  Each time Peter responded yes and in response Jesus responded: “Feed my lambs”, “Tend my sheep”, and “Feed my sheep”.  What struck me most about this is the repetition of this and then I began to consider the different needs we see every week at Southside.  There are the physical needs, the emotional needs, and the spiritual needs that we encounter on almost a daily basis with the people we encounter.  Those who have been to Southside or are serving at Southside can bear witness to the absolute real way in which God is meeting the needs of the community in such a tangible way.

When I first started coming to Faith Center one of the major reasons I felt drawn to this church was the way in which it met the needs of the church family and the community as a whole; living out what the bible commands in this way.  Southside is a direct extension of this heart of the church, but in a much different way.

About a month ago I had a conversation with Jeff about the modern church and some of the newer style ministries that have been springing up all over the place.  One thing that I noticed is that the modern church very much follows the patterns set forth in books like 1st and 2nd Corinthians, Titus, and 1st and 2nd Timothy.  What we don’t witness much of in the modern church is the example set forth in the book of Acts.  My heart for Southside is that it is a continuation of Acts.  People from Faith Center have heard the Lord speaking to them and have to decided to engage a community that is in need physically, emotionally, and spiritually.  Paul went into every city and engaged that very city with truth, Peter stayed in Judea to engage his own people, the Jews.  If Peter was the rock upon which Jesus would build the church that church was built by engaging his own community.

Southside has become a place in which we meet the needs of the people in a real, physical way with hot meals, warm coats, sleeping bags to name just a few.  Through the one on one conversations with people who come in we are able to build relationships that go much deeper than the surface and we are able see the emotional pain that people have experienced.   People in our community are crying out in pain and these relationships allow us to speak hope into their lives.   Each week as the short teachings are brought we are able to feed the spiritual needs of the people with hope and the gospel.  I have seen the gospel shared in so many different ways over the past 11 months and in such practical ways that speak to the very core of the people there.

It was not accident that Jesus asked Peter that question three times and responded the way he did.  Over and over when Jesus encountered people he showed us the example of meeting the immediate physical and emotional needs and then speaking truth into their lives (meeting their spiritual needs).  It is my prayer that those of us at Southside can continue to follow that example.  I would ask those of you reading this that you lift up this place in prayer.  Specifically that as we pass our one year anniversary, those leading Southside would be sensitive to the direction that God has for this place.

By Grace Alone

John Appleton

No Case Is Hopeless Because Jesus Lives

Dear Beloved Pastor David, faithful Pastoral Staff, and most loved Church Family at Faith Center. This morning I choose to focus all my affection and faith upon Jesus!  Every time I open His inerrant Word I read how our Savior came to rescue, save and heal people who were bound in hopelessness, fear, sickness and despair.  It is written in Matthew 4:23-25, “And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease among the people. Then His fame went throughout all Syria; and they brought to Him all sick people who were afflicted with various diseases and torments, and those who were demon-possessed, epileptics, and paralytics; and He healed them.  Great multitudes followed Him — from Galilee, and from Decapolis, Jerusalem, Judea, and beyond the Jordan.”

No case is hopeless because Jesus lives!  God’s Word which cannot lie says this of our Savior in Hebrews 13:8, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.”  That means that this same Jesus who preached the gospel of the kingdom, healing all kinds of of disease among the people back then, is still doing the same work of love right now!

Amidst my own affliction and battle with disease, I am so uplifted each new day by choosing not to focus on my sickness and disease, but rather fixing my gaze of faith upon Jesus who is a Mighty Savior and a Great Healer!  This is not to deny the very real battle I have been engaged in, but it is a decision of my trust in Jesus to look beyond my poor health to my Healer.

Remember that no case is hopeless because Jesus lives!  It is written in Acts 3:1-8, “Now Peter and John went up together to the temple at the hour of prayer, the ninth hour.  And a certain man lame from his mother’s womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms from those who entered the temple; who, seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple, asked for alms. And fixing his eyes on him, with John, Peter said, “Look at us.” So he gave them his attention, expecting to receive something from them.  Then Peter said, “Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.” And he took him by the right hand and lifted him up, and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. So he, leaping up, stood and walked and entered the temple with them — walking, leaping, and praising God.”

Thank you for your continued prayers that I would look past my sickness to My Savior, and daily fix my eyes upon Him, expecting to receive something good from my Grace filled God!  That’s how I am praying for you!  May together we learn to never attach the word “hopeless” to our lives or the lives of those we love, live next to, or work beside!

In seemingly the most hopeless circumstance, after Jesus’ friend Lazarus had died, the grief and sorrow surrounding his death, had blocked the vision of those who grieved from seeing that when Jesus arrives, no case is hopeless!  Jesus said to Martha in John 11:25-26, moments before He raised Lazarus from the dead, “Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live.   And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?”

“No Case Is Hopeless Because Jesus Lives!”

Let’s turn our eyes upon Him and learn to trust Him more and more!

With all my love from your CARE Pastor “in exile”

Pastor Ted

Beyond The Reach of Change and Decay

~1st letter from Pastor Ted in a series~

Dear Beloved Pastor David, faithful Pastoral Staff, and most loved Church Family at Faith Center,

            This is first in a series of letters which the Lord is prompting me to write to my beloved family in the faith at Faith Center.  I admit at the onset of this epistle that I need to write this as much for my own wholeness, even as I deeply hope these words will be a blessing to you.

            When I got up on a ladder and stepped onto my desk in the Pastor’s Office in July of 2010, I had no way of foreseeing that my subsequent fall would result in a leg so damaged that it would require four separate surgeries and now our temporary relocation to Boise to get the medical help I need several times a week. 

Right now in addition to removing my artificial knee and replacing it with an antibiotic spacer, I have a 2” x 4” open wound on the front of my leg with a suction tube running from it to a “wound vacuum.”  Home Health out of St. Luke’s Meridian comes over 3 times a week to replace the packing and dressing on the wound, as I am delivered daily doses of a medicine to try and clear up the infection.  They don’t know precisely how long it will take for this wound to heal or to eradicate this rare fungal infection.

I was so deeply blessed when during one of my days in the hospital at St. Luke’s, Pastor David and Pastor Jeffry walked in!  I can’t tell you how much their visit meant and still means to Sheila and I.  In addition Tom Frazier and Becca and Jason Henry came to see me. What a blessing.

So though I am confined to a small space without prospect of “an early reprieve,” and following a very difficult day for me and Sheila yesterday, I awoke this morning with this thought on my heart, “Today I will seek the Lord.”  When I opened my Bible I was directed to this Word of God found in:

1 Peter 1: 3-9 (NLT)

“All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by his great mercy that we have been born again, because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Now we live with great expectation, 4 and we have a priceless inheritance—an inheritance that is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay. 5 And through your faith, God is protecting you by his power until you receive this salvation, which is ready to be revealed on the last day for all to see.

6 So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you have to endure many trials for a little while. 7 These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.

8 You love him even though you have never seen him. Though you do not see him now, you trust him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy. 9 The reward for trusting him will be the salvation of your souls.”

            Dear Pastor David and church family, today we must stay reminded that what each of us truly has “in Christ” does lie beyond the “reach of change and decay,” or accidents, or surgeries or disease!  Praise God!

            Yet this side of “beyond the reach of change and decay” we are having to endure many trials, which is God’s means of revealing whether our faith in Him is genuine or not.  That is why Peter speaks of true and genuine faith as that which is more precious than gold! And it is our faith that will bring us much praise and glory on the day Jesus Christ is revealed to watching world.

            Dear family of faith, please pray for me as I pray for you!  Amidst these days of confinement as I battle this disease and await news of receiving another artificial knee, I don’t want to miss the opportunities to honor and glorify my Lord Jesus, and to represent you my church family well, while we are apart.  Even as I am writing these words of my first letter, these familiar words Pastor Jeffry has often led us in singing; are being played on the radio, and this Sunday morning while we are temporarily apart, I choose to “Bless the Lord O my soul.”

“10,000 Reasons” by Matt Redman

Bless the Lord O my soul
O my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I’ll worship Your holy name
The sun comes up
It’s a new day dawning
It’s time to sing Your song again
Whatever may pass and whatever lies before me
Let me be singing when the evening comes
Bless the Lord O my soul
O my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I’ll worship Your holy name
You’re rich in love and You’re slow to anger
Your name is great and Your heart is kind
For all Your goodness I will keep on singing
10,000 reasons for my heart to find
Bless the Lord O my soul
O my soul

Worship his holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I’ll worship Your holy name
And on that day when my strength is failing
The end draws near and my time has come
Still my soul will sing Your praise unending
10,000 years and then forever more
Bless the Lord O my soul
O my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I’ll worship Your holy name
Bless the Lord O my soul
O my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I’ll worship Your holy name (repeat 3x)
Sing like never before
O my soul
I’ll worship Your holy name (repeat 3x)

            I love each of you with an everlasting love, and while we are apart, I am lifting you up in prayer, asking that while you stay the course of the work we’ve been assigned at Faith Center, that I may be given the privilege to intercede for all of you from here in Boise.

            Forever…

Pastor Ted

            

Thank you

Dear Church Family,david2

The words thank you do not seem to adequately cover how we feel about this sabbatical time away with our family. Thank you for freeing us to do it. Thank you for encouraging us to step away. Thank you for stepping up in our absence!

I think we knew that we needed a sabbatical rest, but it wasn’t until we started this time away that we realized just how much. We cannot even begin to tell you how crucial this time has been for us personally, our family and our marriage. Our time away together was really about rest, refreshing, refocus, and fun! We camped, stayed home, did projects, hiked, went to California, saw Bryce Canyon, fished and fished and maybe fished a little! There was a great deal of time just digging into the word, spending time with Jesus and journaling.

So as we have ended this time away I find myself so thankful for this church family and this wonderful community! It is good to be home and back with our family again. We are excited about everything God has for us as a church this fall and in the days, weeks, and years ahead!

Thank you, thank you, and thank you for the blessing of this sabbatical time! We love you and are so excited to serve Jesus along side all of you here at Faith Center!

Pastor David