our CHURCH

We believe real life only happens in a relationship with Jesus.  

 

The best decision we ever made was to follow Jesus.  We’re regular people moved by God’s extraordinary grace.  

We are a church eager to experience passionate worship, authentic connection, and to grow in our love of God.  

We love our local community and want to help every person take a NEXT STEP with Jesus.

 
 
 
 
 
our PURPOSE
 
 
WORSHIP GOD
We are made for this!
When so much competes for our attention, worshiping God
refocuses us.
Renewed, we’re ready for a
NEXT STEP with Jesus.
 
CONNECT WITH OTHERS
Life is better together.
Where life separates and isolates, Christ connects. Life change happens best in relationship.
We take our
NEXT STEP with Jesus.
 
SERVE TOGETHER
Our world is bigger than just us. Love listens and acts.
ServeTeams partner with local and global ministries
to love and take a
NEXT STEP with Jesus.
 
REACH OUR WORLD
We have amazing news to share. Jesus opened the door to relationship with God. We were made for this! We can’t wait to
help others take a
NEXT STEP with Jesus.
 
 
new SERIES
 
Relational Vampires:
 
There are some people that just seem to suck the life out of us. Some are endlessly needy; others complain. Some you can’t trust because they’re manipulative, or just hypocrites. We know we’re supposed to love them, but honestly, sometimes it’s just plain difficult. In this series, we’ll be putting a name to this type of person: Relational Vampires. We’ll recognize that these people are all around us draining our energy, and that it’s easy to fall under their spell and become vampires ourselves. Instead of running from or fighting with these vampires, though, we will learn how God can use us to bring love into their lives.
Sunday’s message- “Critical People:”
 
 
 
 
 
 
weekly BLOG
 

“Relational Vampires: Controlling People”

Controlling People
 
There are some people that just seem to suck the life out of us. Some are endlessly needy; others complain. Some you can’t trust because they’re manipulative, or just hypocrites. We know we’re supposed to love them, but honestly, sometimes it’s just plain difficult. In this series, we’ll be putting a name to this type of person: Relational Vampires. We’ll recognize that these people are all around us draining our energy, and that it’s easy to fall under their spell and become vampires ourselves. Instead of running from or fighting with these vampires, though, we will learn how God can use us to bring love into their lives.
 
How do I love a controlling person?
Two weapons of a controlling person: Threats & Guilt
 
Three Things to Know
1. Know what you are called to do 2. Know when you are being controlled 3. Know when to draw the line in the sand Bottom Line: I’m free to love you when Jesus leads me
 
Further Conversation
1. On a scale of 1-10, how controlling was your home? Are you more a controller or a people-pleaser? 2. Why do you think some people are so controlling? What motivates for someone to allow themselves to be controlled? 3. Read Matthew 16:21-24 What motivated Peter? What do you think Peter feared? What surprises you about Jesus’ response? 4. How does knowing what we are called to do free us to love controlling people appropriately? What are you called to do? 5. What areas of your life do you try to have the most control over? What would you like to do differently? 6. What are some ways you can intentionally give God control? 7. Think of someone that you struggle to love because they are controlling. Without revealing who, how could Christ Church help you take a next step with Jesus and love this person?
Daily Devotions: Go Deeper this Week
 
Monday – Matthew 14:22-31
That’s impossible! We all can think of things we simply can’t or won’t do! My grandmother used to say that she would only fly in an airplane over “my dead body!” Ironically, when she passed away we had to fly her remains to her home state for burial. Following Jesus requires doing the impossible sometimes… like obediently loving someone who has hurt us or is controlling. Bitterness or resentment creep in, and love seems as impossible as walking on water. This passage lets us learn from Peter’s faith and fall. If we let Jesus lead, keeping our eyes fixed on him, the impossible is possible. Who do you need to love appropriately, compassionately, and sacrificially? Focus on Jesus and take your next step towards him.
Pray: LORD Jesus, sometimes what you require seems impossible. Help me fix my eyes on you and love all others like you love me!
 
Tuesday – Psalm 23
Letting God lead isn’t always easy. Some paths are painful. We often read this Psalm in moments of our greatest grief, such as at the funeral of a loved one. God will sometimes lead us through a dark valley. When has God led you places that you didn’t want to go? We can become reluctant and fearful. We dig in our heals or grow angry at God. But somehow, we must trust our Shepherd. Often the path to the peaceful stream or green meadow is through the dark valley. We could miss out on God’s great blessing for us if we won’t follow God through the pain, grief, or dark. How have your grown from times of difficulty? How has God brought blessing from places of pain? Remind yourself today of God’s love for you, and allow this love to refresh and encourage you to let God lead.
Pray: Good Shepherd, help me remember the joy and peace you bring in the light so that I will more fully trust you in the dark.
 
Wednesday – Isaiah 55:8-9
Have you ever wondered why they shut a door between the pilot and passengers on a commercial airplane? Safety is a concern, I’m sure. But it probably has far more to do with “back seat drivers”! Can you imagine how many people, all who do not know how to fly, would be trying to judge or direct the pilot’s behavior. We do the same with God. We try to judge God’s leading or control God’s actions. But God’s ways are not our ways. God knows better. How can you trust God to lead today…without back seat driving?
Pray: Almighty God, you know all thing…and I do not. Forgive me for second-guessing your plan. I will trust you to lead today.
 
Thursday – Psalm 37:1-5
Have you every had an itch you just couldn’t scratch? For a moment, its all I can think about. The agony builds and builds. And then suddenly, its gone. Did the itch disappear? No, not necessarily. Somehow I started thinking about something else that took my mind off the itch. Controlling people can be like an itch. They demand our attention. They shame and threaten. But if we will only move our attention to trusting God, we could quiet the controller and learn to love them appropriately. If we would only commit everything to God, then the evil of another we have little lasting influence on us. What itch is occupying your mind and heart? Whose voice is demanding your attention? How can you choose to trust in the Lord and do good today?
Pray: Heavenly Father, please help my only trust your voice. Even as others demand my attention, may I fix my thoughts on you.
 
Friday – John 21:15-25
But what about him? Has comparison ever captured you? Peter just had an intimate moment of restoration with the resurrected Jesus. Think about that for just a second. Peter betrayed Jesus. Jesus rose from the grave and now just had a beautiful moment of forgiving and restoring Peter. What a mountaintop experience! Then suddenly, like a dog distracted by a squirrel, Peter quickly shifts his attention from the risen LORD to comparing himself to a fellow disciple. Comparison captures our minds and heart, robbing us of intimacy with Jesus. We wander by wondering about others instead of letting Jesus lead us and trusting his love. Where has comparison captured your attention? As forgiveness and allow Jesus to lead you. Where is Jesus taking you…not others…today?
Pray: LORD Jesus, I’m sorry for how often I wonder about others instead of trusting in you. Lead me, I am yours today.
 
Saturday – Galatians 5:16-26
Loving a controlling person can be a challenge. It requires being constantly on guard…remembering your call and refusing to be pulled from it. But the hardest controller to love is yourself. We want to be God, deciding what is best for us…then to allow the Spirit to lead us into what is good, right, and holy. Who is in control of you today? Whose lead have you followed this week? As we prepare to gather together for worship tomorrow, may we trust in the leading of the Spirit. May our lives bear witness to the Spirit’s goodness!
Pray: Loving God, may I bear the fruits of the Spirit as I follow the lead of the Spirit. I am all yours today, tomorrow, and for eternity!
 

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“Lies Christians Believe: Lie #3”

LIE: I don’t need to go to church to be a Christian.
 
All of us have heard the clichés meant to offer comfort in a difficult moment, but don’t realize they can hurt when they prove unreliable. In this series we want to tackle some of the most common “Lies Christians Believe”, and discover the truth that sets us free and will never let us down.
 
LIE: I don’t need to go to church to be a Christian
TRUTH: I need a local church because…God says so -Worshiping Jesus together is powerful -we need Christian community -we grow better together BOTTOM LINE: If I’m going to follow Jesus, I need a local church
 
Further Conversation
1. Why don’t some people like attending or connecting to a church? 2. Read Hebrews 10:23-25 List out the commands in this passage. Summarize in your own words what the writer in suggesting. 3. Read Proverbs 27:17 & Ephesians 5:20 How do these two commands work together to help a Jesus follower grow? 4. Read Jeremiah 17:9 How are we sometimes our own worst enemy? How have our hearts lied to us? 5. Read Matthew 18:15-20 What does this passage suggest is a role of the church? How do you feel about this for your church? 6. Why is accountability a challenge for us today? How do people creatively avoid accountability, especially in spiritual matters? 7. How is your commitment to the local church? Where are you struggling? Why do you think this is an concern for you? How could Christ Church help you more faithfully follow Jesus?
 
Daily Devotions: Go Deeper this Week
 
Monday – 1 Corinthians 12:12-27
You matter! Comparison is a deadly game, especially in the church. We don’t serve because we feel intimidated. We’re afraid of commitment. We lead busy lives. Yet, if Paul can be trusted, you and I matter to the Body of Christ, the church. The Body will never be fully healthy if we’re not obedient and committed to Christ and the church. Those who have lost limbs can lead productive, even inspiring lives. But its never quite the same as a fully healthy and complete body. The church needs us at our best and at our most. And we need the church. (A body part is dead – and gross – apart from the body.) How are you connected to the church? What is your commitment level to your spiritual health for the sake of others?
Pray: LORD Jesus, remind me that I belong your body, the Church. Help me commit my whole self, healthy and complete, to you.
 
Tuesday – 1 Corinthians 5:1-8
I’m a passionate football fan, especially for my Pittsburgh Steelers. A few years ago the Steelers cut a very productive and popular player. Everyone was shocked until it came out how this player’s behavior was negatively affecting the locker room. A team committed to their goal must eventually remove a person who holds them back from that goal. Paul challenges the church in Corinth to do the same. A person committed to sin is a person not committed to Jesus. The church holds people accountable because the goal of Christ is worth it. Paul doesn’t say the person is banished forever, only until their allegiance to Christ is renewed. Accountability is a gift for the church and the person. How do you feel about accountability? Are you fully committed to the goal and glory of Jesus Christ?
Pray: Loving God, accountability is hard when its my sin. Help me and the church be passionately committed to your holiness & glory!
 
Wednesday – Matthew 5:12-16
Have you ever driven up to an intersection where the lights aren’t working? I approach with extreme caution because I never know when someone might go or turn. The light protects us. Jesus wanted the same said of the church. We’re meant to give light (guide & protect) and salt (flavor & preservative) to the world. When we give into sin and fail to live for Jesus, that light goes dim and the world becomes more dangerous. The church is important. How am I affecting the church? How do I brighten the light within me?
Pray: Holy Spirit, help me see how important the church is and how I can grow in my faith and obedience, brightening the light within.
 
Thursday – 2 Timothy 2:15-26
We try hard to impress those we respect and admire. We dress to impress for job interviews and first dates. We put our best effort into pleasing the boss, hoping for that next promotion. Even kids act out to gain the attention of those they love. Paul challenges Timothy, and all Jesus followers, to do the same for God. “Work hard to present yourselves to God…” We have God’s unconditional love. But how do we respond to God’s love? Do we give God a feeble effort or are we straining to restrain and present ourselves holy, obedient, pure, godly, honorable, etc. How we choose to leave is evidence of how we expect to approach God’s throne. What are you planning to present to God? What would God want for you?
Pray: Heavenly Father, forgive me when I take your love for granted. Help me present to you my best because you gave me your best.
 
Friday – Acts 7:54-60
We first read about Stephen in Acts 6. Stephen’s love for Jesus and his commitment to serve in the church are recognized. Eventually, Stephen’s faith conflicts with the Jewish leaders in the community. As Stephen is about to be murdered because of Jesus, he has a vision. Jesus is standing at the right hand of God. Everywhere else in Scripture Jesus is said to sit at the right hand of God. But as his faithful servant is about to die, Jesus stands. We stand to show honor. Jesus said the goal of a faithful follower is to hear the LORD say “well done good and faithful servant.” (Matt 25:23) I like to think Jesus is clapping, giving Stephen a standing ovation that screams with pride “well done!” None of us aim to die for our faith. But the question is, are we really committed to living our faith. I know one thing. I would love to hear the words “well done!” Today, I will aim for the applause of heaven! Will you?
Pray: LORD Jesus, I confess I have lived for the applause of many others. But today, and every day hereafter, help me live for you.
 
Saturday – Matthew 7:13-14
We must chose the path we will take. The wide way is popular and easy. The narrow way of Christ is hard and less traveled. Its not easy to follow Jesus. One of the hardest parts is admitting how hard it is and confessing that we need help. We need each other to faithfully follow Jesus. Prepare yourself today for church tomorrow. Go open to ask for help, confess your missteps, and offer your hand to another. The church is our traveling partners on this narrow way.
Pray: Loving God, thank you for the church, these fellow followers of Jesus ready to help me along the way of Christ.

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“Lies Christians Believe: Lie #2”

LIE #2: The Bible says it, I believe it. That settles it.
 
So many things sound “true”. Maybe they’re almost true. Maybe we’d like them to be true. Often, they’re true enough until something goes wrong and we discover the platitudes we relied on for comfort weren’t built to last.
 
All of us have heard the clichés meant to offer comfort in a difficult moment, but don’t realize they can hurt when they prove unreliable. In this series we want to tackle some of the most common “Lies Christians Believe”, and discover the truth that sets us free and will never let us down.
 
TRUTH The Bible claims to be God’s
a. Inspiration b. Salvation
c. Revelation d. Authorization
 
TRUTH We believe the bible because Jesus did.
TRUTH We believe the bible because the Church does.
TRUTH If the bible says it, I need it.
 
BOTTOM LINE The Bible says it. Jesus believes it. I need it.
 
 
Further Conversation
1. Who are some people you trust? Who taught you that some people are trust-worthy? Why do you to trust these persons?
2. Why do some people not trust & believe the Bible?
3. Read 2 Timothy 3:14-17. What does it mean when the bible claims: Inspiration? Revelation? Salvation? Authorization?
4. Read Matthew 5:17-18 How did Jesus view Scripture? Why should Jesus’ opinion matter to us?
5. Read 2 Peter 1:16-21, & 1 Corinthians 11:1 How does the Church view Scripture? Why should the Church’s opinion matter?
6. How are you taking time to hear from God through the Bible? How does the Bible shape how you live?
7. What do wish was different about how you engage the bible? How can this group help you make those changes and grow in faith?
 
Daily Devotions: Go Deeper this Week
 
Monday – Ephesians 6:10-17
Did you remember sword drills in children’s Sunday school? We’d raise our bible’s over our head until the teacher called out a passage. The first to turn to the passage won the drill. The bible is called the sword of the Spirit. It is the only offensive weapon in the spiritual armor of a believer. It is our critical tool, God’s word to us, to fend off the attack of the enemy. The problem is that we forget who our enemy is. Many people misuse the bible as a club to beat others into submission. But Scripture itself reminds us that our enemy isn’t flesh and blood…but the powers of evil in the unseen world. God’s word is vital in the life of a believer. We should know it well and utilize it well so that we may stand strong in the LORD.
Pray: God of Heaven, thank you for your word. Help me know it well, apply it well in my life, and use it well to fend off the enemy.
 
Tuesday – Hebrews 4:12-13
Have you ever watched a butcher cut meat? Through training and a really sharp knife they precisely and effortlessly cut to and even through bone. The writer of Hebrews compares the Scripture to that sharp knife. The truth shared in Scripture cuts deep…through the masks, the lies, the defenses we use to pretend we’re good. It cuts to the soul. Many of us run from the word. But these masterful cuts beautifully expose our greatest need. We need God’s forgiveness, grace, and hope. And God’s word, even as it exposes it also reveals the Good News that grace and forgiveness is God’s free gift to us. May we not fear the word, but eagerly dive in. May we allow God’s word to cut to the core…and bring wonderful healing and wholeness
Pray: Loving God, your word hurts when it exposes. Help me not run but dive in and find that it wonderfully heals and refreshes.
 
Wednesday – Deuteronomy 6:4-9
Some Jewish people took this passage literally. They tied bits of Scripture text to their foreheads and wrists. They embedded them in their doorframe. Whether God expected a literal application or not misses the point. God commands us to pass down God’s word to future generations. We do so not just by teaching knowledge but demonstrating its truth. We should wear God’s word and display it through all we discuss and do. It should identify our home…just like a house number (on a doorframe). Is God’s word that vital to you? Do others hear God through the way you live? What could change?
Pray: Holy Spirit, help me so come to know and grow in God’s word that I live it out boldly and loudly for all to see.
 
Thursday – Matthew 19:1-12
Were Adam and Eve real? Honestly, its a fair question. Modern science presents a strong case for at least some degree of evolution. No one has conclusive proof. We have varying degrees of evidence and a lot of faith. But what about Jesus? This passage is important not only for what it teaches about human sexuality and marriage, but also how Jesus teaches. Jesus references Adam & Eve’s creation and relationship. For Jesus, Adam and Eve are real and definitely matter. We are challenged as Jesus followers with what we will believe. We can not prove the creation story. But we don’t have to. We don’t believe because of evidence. We believe because Jesus did. What Jesus teaches, we believe…whether its human sexuality, marriage, service, love or even Adam & Eve.
Pray: LORD Jesus, may I follow you with all my heart, mind, and will. What you believe may I come to trust and live.
 
Friday – Acts 17:10-12
We know better than to talk religion or politics. Throughout history, those are fighting words. Paul experienced a lot of opposition as he sought to share the Gospel throughout the known world. But his early experience in Berea was different. Instead of fighting Paul, the Bereans were curious. They explored the Scriptures together to determine if what Paul was sharing was true. We witness talking heads screaming past each other on our televisions. And now the fight is in many churches. Maybe we could show the world something different if we dive into God’s word together. We stand in a long line of Jesus followers who share in the conversation. As we explore God’s word as its been heard throughout the ages, we learn how to not fight but be truly noble and open-minded. May we be curious, not fighting but exploring God’s word together.
Pray: Holy Spirit, call us together with all the Church through all the ages, to hear and learn what God says through eternal God’s word.
 
Saturday – Psalm 119:105
We take light for granted. I once did a night-hike. This was a guided hike in the dark of night through the woods…with only the moonlight to guide us. It is amazing what we can see with artificial light. This experience helped me appreciate a flashlight. Light makes the path so much easier to see. The word of God is that light for our paths. We ignore it at our own risk and peril. May you dive into God’s word today and come to see like never before!
Pray: Loving God, thank you for your word that is a light to my feet. Help me listen, learn, and take each step of life in faith and trust!
 

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