Our Attitude Is One Of Gratitude

gratitudeA dear man of God, Pastor Wayne Cordeiro said, “Your attitude is the most important thing about you. It is more important than your education, more important than your past, more important than your looks, more important than your money, more important than anything!”

Our continuous attitude is the simple most important factor in all we say or do. And of all the attitudes, nothing is more critical than having an attitude of gratitude. The Word of God says in 1 Thessalonians 5:18, “In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” It’s not what you’ve lost, it’s what you have left that counts!

Do you know that ingratitude is the most basic of sins? It opens the door to all other sins. This is made clear in Romans 1:21-22 which says, “For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools…”

THEY DID NOT GIVE THANKS TO THE LORD. And then what follows is a downward spiral leading to degradation and destruction. But it began with an ungrateful heart! It’s not what we’ve lost, it’s what we have left that counts!

I’m glad we have one day a year, “Thanksgiving Day” to be reminded as to just how blessed and loved by God we truly are! The Word of God reveals how an attitude of gratitude is the key to releasing the supernatural power of God in our lives. Do you need a miracle in your life, your family, your business, your marriage, or in the lives of your children? The key is allowing and inviting the Holy Spirit to form in us “an attitude of gratitude!”

In the church I grew up in down in Southern California, I was always amazed at Charlie Craig and his sister Pearl. Both of them were in their 80’s. Pearl had never married so she could spend her entire life taking care of her brother Charlie. Charlie was totally blind and deaf…and joyful! He would hold his hands lightly over hers, as she would in sign language tell him the words of the hymns of worship we’d be singing or The Word of God my daddy was preaching. They were two of the happiest people I’ve ever known. They always had a smile and a hug especially for little kids.

They had found the secret to a happy life. CHRIST was their SUSTAINER and PROVIDER and they were THANKFUL! “In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” It’s not what you’ve lost, it’s what you have left that counts!

This Thanksgiving 2015, we are filled with an attitude of gratitude to Jesus for all He has done and continues to do for us…and for all of you!

The Joy of Christmas

Coming in to this Christmas season I was hesitant in setting too high of expectations for what the holidays would bring. I knew that there would be the traditional ham and turkey, I even knew we would journey out to the woods to cut the perfect Christmas tree, what I wasn’t sure about was what the Christmas season would FEEL like.

I remember as a child the Joy and expectation of the holidays. There was a feeling similar to that of pregnancy. There is hope, excitement, longing, and even joy for what is to come. Not just Christmas morning, but everything leading up to, and through the month of December. There is the smell and warmth of a fire in the fireplace, making Christmas cookies, Christmas music, snow, lights, productions, etc… All of it was magical.

Now I am an adult and there are days where the fire is a chore, the cookies create a mess, the music is mundane, the snow is annoying, the lights are dangerous and the productions are…well trying. This is why I was hesitant in the events of this month, all the work, additional time and energy put into one day. I knew this wasn’t what my attitude should be, wasn’t sure why, but I had an idea of how to change it.

I began asking God why Christmas had become a chore. His answer; because I had lost focus on the reason why. The lights, decorations, cookies, they aren’t for me, my wife or my kids. They are for Jesus. The pregnant feeling was that of the expectation of our coming Savior. Now we know how the story ends, with his crucifixion, but that only makes Christmas morning even more meaningful. Our Savior came to restore relationship between us and God, which is better than any gift we can ever give on Christmas morning.

I realized maybe I should accept the gift that the Lord gave to me. The gift of God being active and alive, working in my life. So I began to ask God for those very things that I had lost. Joy, hope, love, peace, childlike faith. And just as we read time and time again in Scripture, God proved himself faithful, he has freely given those very things that I thought were lost forever to me in abundance. If you are like me, I encourage you to ask, not Santa, but God, and he will freely give all of himself to you! May you have a Christ filled holiday season, and may you be filled with an abundance of Joy, Peace, Hope, and Love.

 

Harvest Party!

Fall is in the air, which means that our annual Faith Center Harvest Party is right around the corner. There are many ways for everyone to help this year. Everyone is invited to donate candy for the party itself. This year because harvest party is on a Saturday we will be hosting people from 3-6pm making the harvest party an hour longer than previous years. Everyone is also encouraged to sign up to bring desserts for our cake walk.

Friday night the 30th we will be setting up games, decorating and preparing goodie bags for all of the festivities the next day. Families are welcomed to join us for pizza, friendly competition with prizes (of course), candy, and laughter, while we transform the building into a fantastic game zone for our harvest party on Saturday.

The day of the harvest party requires the most help with people signing up to serve at each activity, as well as people helping to tear down at the end of the night. We ask that everyone sign up to serve a one-hour shift at a game of your choosing. Sign up sheets are in the front office.

We are excited to provide a fun and safe environment again this year for children to see and hear the love of Jesus on Halloween night. Please feel free to dress up in fun family friendly costumes.Harvest Party Bold square

Southside of Heaven

The LandingI have been very excited about this season down at the Southside of Heaven! As we get ready to celebrate going into year 3 (doesn’t seem like it’s been that long) I have thought a lot about what God has done and continues to do downtown. We have an amazing team of leaders completely sold out for God and Southside. It is an absolute honor to serve with this group of people.

 

Celebrate Recovery continues to challenge us to work through our hurts, habits and hang-ups. I am watching our community desire and chase after God with a passion to have Jesus captivate and change our lives. We do not have to be bound by our past failures.

 

The Landing has kicked off on Wednesday s. The Landing is the high school version of Celebrate Recovery. It allows teens to have a safe place where they can come to feel accepted and loved and learn how to walk life out in a healthy way. I want to thank Domino’s for donating pizza’s every week! What a huge blessing!!!!!

 

Friday nights at our Southside gathering we have seen tremendous growth in lives. Every Friday we have different people share their story. We all have a story and something valuable to offer! It’s a great time to hear truth, connect with others, eat a meal together and listen to music. The Southside kids ministry has been booming as well. It’s exciting to see how God is working in lives from young to old.

 

Friday morning latte’s are fired up and ready to roll! Every Friday morning starting at 9:00 am we will be hanging out, drinking coffee and talking life. It’s a great way to build relationships and find people we can walk life out with.

 

At the Southside of Heaven we talk a lot about being community. We focus on building relationships and recognize we are not alone in this crazy world. It’s a safe place to encounter God, deal with our struggles and find hope. I encourage you to come and check it out! Thank you all for your prayers, support and encouragement!

 

Address:       211 Fir Street La Grande

Tuesdays:     7:30 pm – Celebrate Recovery (Southside kids ministry)

Wednesdays:           5:00 pm – 7:00 pm – The Landing (High School) pizza every week

Fridays:          9:00 am – Friday morning latte’s

Fridays:          7:30 pm Southside… Truth, Dinner, Music, Southside kids

 

In His Grip

Pastor JeffrySouthsideLogo

Love & Respect

loveandrespectSuccessful couples know that harmony and happiness in marriage are not achieved by love alone. Based on extensive biblical and scientific research, Dr. Emerson Eggerichs reveals the secret to couples meeting each other’s deepest needs. He helps to end the vicious cycle so many of us live in. Love and Respect is a groundbreaking study, which offers much-needed help to husbands and wives everywhere. It introduces the biblical teaching of unconditional respect, and that it is as powerful as unconditional love.

This marriage class begins October 22nd at 6:30 pm at Faith Center. It will run for 6 weeks each Thursday, taking a break for Thanksgiving. This class will be lead by Mark and Caroline Baker who have a deep passion to minister to couples. Childcare at Faith Center is not yet available, but might become available. Please sign up for this class in the office and let us know if you are in need of childcare.


Children’s Ministry

childrens_ministry (1)Church Family! We have a lot of kiddos coming through the doors at Faith Center. Praise God! We have need of many people to sign up to serve. You can serve at one service and attend the service you prefer! Please pray about signing up for multiple Sundays in September, October, & November. Here are the areas we need filled:

1st Service                                            2nd Service

Nursery                                                Nursery

Preschool                                              Preschool

K-5th                                                  K-5th

Southside of Heaven

The LandingI am excited for this coming fall down at Southside. Our core leadership has spent the last few months praying and seeking after the heart of God for our community. We are united and passionate for what God is calling us to do and what we are to be about. As we wrap up our second year and look ahead to the third year we believe God has given us a fresh vision and a fresh heart.

There are a few things that have been changed to fulfill the heart and vision of Southside.

‘The Landing’ is a new ministry focused on recovery for high school students. We will meet every Wednesday from 5-7 pm at the Southside building. We have a great team of people who have a passion to see our teens find freedom from life’s hurts, habits and hang-ups. We will be sharing more details about this awesome ministry in the next few weeks. We are launching ‘The Landing’ September 16th!

Another change is with our Celebrate Recovery ministry. We have met for years on Thursdays from 7-9 pm. After much prayer the leaders along with people who attend CR felt Tuesday nights from 7:30-8:30 pm is a better night for our community. The goal is to give people the option to go to church on Sunday, CR on Tuesday and Southside on Friday. We have discussed our small group format as well and have been praying about step study groups and bible studies. We are waiting for God to show us what that looks like. CR will now be Tuesdays 7:30-8:30 starting September 8th.

Thank you to all those who have served and that are still currently serving downtown! I also want to thank our church staff, elders, council and all of you for your prayers, wisdom, financial support and encouragement.

We have watched Jesus captivate, love and change all of us who are a part of the Southside community! If you are interested about what Southside is all call the front office, better yet come hang out with us downtown and experience what God is doing!

In His Grip,

Pastor Jeffry

 

Upcoming Fall Dates

September 13              Multiplied:Disicpleship

September 18              FCYG – 5th Quarter

September 20              Multiplied:Discipleship

September 22              FCYG – See You At The Pole Rally

September 23              FCYG – See You At The Pole

September 27              Faith Center 101/Reducing the Risk Classes

October 3-4                 FCYG – Seeing Seattle

October 4                    Multiplied:Leadership

October 9                    FCYG – 5th Quarter

October 11                  Multiplied:Discipleship

October 17                  EOU Tailgate Party!

October 18                  Multiplied:Disciplehsip

October 23                  FCYG – 5th Quarter

October 31                  Harvest Party

November 1                 Multiplied:Leadership

November 8                 Christmas Basket Offering

November 8                 Multiplied:Discipleship

November 15               Multiplied:Discipleship

 

Everlasting Arms

The wonderful Word of our Living God declares, “The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms!” (Deuteronomy 33:27) No matter where I turn or who I speak with or pray for these days, the cry of so many hurting people is, “Where can I find a refuge from this storm assailing my life and family?” I have seen changes so vast and sweeping move across our country, and now as an older man I can declare with greater assurance than ever, that the arms of Jesus our Lord and our God…are our only refuge! He said in John 14:27, “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid!”

When I was twelve years old I ran away from home. I had given a “romantic card” and a box of chocolates to a pretty blonde girl named Sheila who lived two houses from me. Her dad was irate, and he retuned my gift to my dad with the words, “This is totally inappropriate!” My dad sent me back to my room to contemplate for a moment what I would say, and then he demanded I go across the street and apologize to Sheila’s dad. I decided running away was preferable to facing Mr. Van Orden! So I gathered a few survival items from my room, slipped out the bedroom window and hopped on my bike and took off, determined to “live off the land up in the forest of Silverado Canyon!”

I made it twenty-four miles by nightfall; had eaten my couple candy bars and I was cold and frankly getting scared of the sounds of the night. So in my hunger, weariness and fear I remembered a family who attended our church who lived up in Silverado Canyon. When I knocked on their door, I told them that dad and mom had given me permission to take a long bike ride and that the time and distance had simply gotten away from me! They knew better. They prepared me a meal, and then I lay down on their couch and fell into an exhausted sleep. They called my folks and the next thing I knew my dad’s powerful arms were picking my up and carrying me to the car! By the way they never talked with me or punished me for running away, nor did they demand I make the apology…they just rejoiced in finding me and transporting me safely home.

Beloved children of God, storm warnings of one kind or another are in the daily headlines, whether it be a new terrorist threat, impending economic collapse or the last disintegration of Biblical moral values in America. In addition your life may seem engulfed in darkness, and fear may be your constant companion. Oh people of God, GOD IS IN CONTROL, AND HE ALONE IS OUR REFUGE! Take heart and stand on His Word which says in Psalm 46:1-2, “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, even though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea!”

HELD IN THE EVERLASTING ARMS…

Pastor Ted

A Season of Change

Scan1I recently spent seven weeks on sabbatical and had time to process and work on my relationship with God and spend time with my wife Kellie and daughter Olese. Our travels took us to Southern California where we attended our Foursquare International conference. It didn’t hurt that the conference was next door to Disneyland. Olesya was pretty stokedJ.

During my time God revealed some very key perspectives about my life. It wasn’t easy hearing about my flaws and dealing with my own selfishness.

We never enjoy dealing with our imperfections but the freedom that comes from God is so worth it. As we traveled through California we had a ton of adventures all the while God was preparing me for the season ahead. He never promised it would be easy or without conflict. He did show me the way I went about doing ministry had to change. It’s easy for us to think we are doing God’s work running ourselves ragged getting involved in everything that comes down the pike. We sacrifice our families, relationships and our sanity not even realizing it. It is so easy to get caught up in self and find fulfillment or validation in “the work” of God rather than delighting ourselves in the glory of God. We get so busy doing the work we can sometimes forget what the work is all about.

I had to ask myself “why do I do what I do?” The answer we all tell ourselves is “all for the glory of God”. That is the answer we want but we have to be willing to stop, humble ourselves and really allow God to search our heart.

It is easy to allow self to get in the way. We sometimes find out our identity in our works and not in the Creator. Searching for approval from man, finding self worth or validation in our works or wanting to be recognized can sneak in and rob us of the beauty and joy in serving God. It can cause us to become arrogant and self-righteous.

We are all a work in progress; we all need God to change our perspective from time to time. One of the keys to fulfillment is spending time with Jesus and asking Him what He is requiring from our lives. It can be quite a shock when we think we are doing the will of God but find out we are doing things He never asked or intended us to do. The beautiful thing is when we discover what its truly about we are flooded with passion and joy.

I want to thank John, Chong, Pastor David, the Staff, the Leaders at Southside, Worship teams and you our church family for allowing me to take some much needed time away to rediscover the true joy and love of the Lord in my life. The time with Kellie and Olese reminded me what is truly important.

I am excited for the next season of ministry here at Faith Center and downtown at the Southside of Heaven. I am truly honored and humbled to be a part of this amazing community.