Time to Celebrate

“Every week at Grace is important”

I really do believe this. Every week matters. Gathering together with our church family is a sacred and honored tradition taught to us in the New Testament and modeled through 2000 years of history.

In just under two weeks, Grace will have a special Sunday. It’s our 20th Anniversary.

On that day we’ve rented the beautiful outdoor Pepsi Amphitheater at Ft. Tuthill.  This is a great venue for a celebration like this. Truth is, the actual church service will be very much like every other Sunday at Grace over the past 20 years.  We’ll lift high the name of Jesus and show our love for God through Worship and teaching. The big difference is we’re meeting outdoors.  It’s a celebration!

We’ve been talking this up a bit lately, mainly so our church knows when and where to meet and what to expect. But yesterday morning I caught a whole new vision of what this celebration could look like.

On Sunday, I finished up a few messages emphasizing the core of our Community. We finished with “Love Your Neighbor”. I challenged the church to look for and jump on LYN Ops.  Opportunities to Love Your Neighbor! As I was considering my neighbors, it dawned on me that this upcoming celebration is the ideal opportunity to invite them to attend Grace.  Anniversaries are great, and I really do believe the Lord would have us stop, remember and give Him praise for our past. But what excites me even more is this – continuing to love our neighbors, welcoming people in our church and sharing with them the love of God through the Gospel story!

Think about it, what a great atmosphere to invite people that you’re praying for, people that you know don’t have a church home and people that may not easily come to a church service in a traditional setting.  Simply invite them to a “special outdoor service our church is having at the amphitheater with lunch included”.  Truth is, I’m not sure my neighbors care about an ‘anniversary’, why should they? But they may like the casual setting and gorgeous fall day in Flagstaff.

So, yes! It is a time to celebrate and invite!

New Staff @ Grace

Welcome Jason, Nicole, Hannah, Nicholas and Tyler Goodman

We are blessed to have Jason Goodman join the team as our Worship Pastor. Jason and Nicole have been married 13 years and now have 3 kids.  Jason served on the pastoral staff at a church in Tennessee before going to Colorado Springs to attend the New Life School of Worship.  We are looking forward to welcoming this family to Flagstaff and to Grace the first of August. Yep, that’s next week!

Winter Vacation

Not sure I’ve done this before, but I’m writing from my iPad to see if I can blog my way through some vacation highlights. We’re in Long Beach anticipating our week on a big boat with a few hundred people, ok, probably a few thousand. Looking forward to some extended time with Laurie, some good food and great sights. It’ll be great to spend the week with the Johnson family as they break us into this lifestyle of life on the sea.

Yesterday was an amazing day @Grace. I devoted some extended time to cast the vision for our church family for this new year. It was a great way to start 2012! I’m pretty sure the recorded sermon and brief notes are available on our website allaboutgrace.com

This may be the last post for the week, or I may find time to stay updated. Either way, Happy New Year and have a great first week!

Honoring First Responders

On Sunday September 11, 2011 our nation will remember that horrific day ten years ago. A day we all remember where we were, what we were doing and that terrible unsettled feeling of ‘what next’. On that day our church will choose to remember by honoring those that serve our community as first responders. There are many issues and complicated layers of issues that arose from the events of 9-11. One positive note is that we as Americans were reminded how fortunate we are to have men and women who serve us by providing protection, civil rest, and even going so far as to put their lives on the line each day they put on the uniform. We are grateful.

On that Sunday at Grace we’ll pause for a few moments and say “Thanks”.
If you or someone you know serves throughout Northern Arizona, please come and be our guest on Sunday, 9-11-11.

Grace Community Church meets at Sinagua Middle School, our regular service time is 10 – 11:30am.

‘Twas the night before school…

First of all, I do realize that many have already started school. Humor me as I write this for all of our Gracers headed back to school this fall, or summer as it is.

Here’s my prayer for each of you whether you are in Flag unified, private, Christian, charter, or home schooled:

God, bless our kids.
Help them to grow and learn and laugh
May this school year be exceptional because each of them are
May each one know and see You as they study Your world
May each one know Your amazing love as they make friends and find acceptance among others
May each find joy in discovering who You’ve made them to be
May each one feel safe because they trust You and the plans You have for them
May they express grace and kindness especially on the days it seems undeserved
May they be bold in sharing Your story with others
May they be quick to praise You for who You are and how You are working
And may they never be ashamed of Your Son, Jesus!
May Your Spirit fill and guide them
God, use them to change the world
Bless them LORD, bless each one.

Grace Continues

Just a quick note of thanks to the family of Grace Community.  Yesterday we spent the first Sunday of the New Year displaced from our normal meeting place.  We’ve had to do this only one time before.  As anticipated, it actually went off very well.  As mentioned in earlier posts, the school we meet in had an electrical problem due to the extreme freezing weather we’ve had.  So we moved Sunday church services to our rather small Ministry Center.  I believe we have 80 chairs. Maybe close to 100 by the time every desk chair and old metal chair was found.  In three services, each less than an hour, we had about 315 make their way through Grace.

What grabbed my attention was that the message of Grace went forth, without a hitch.  The set up people, techs, and musicians all put in extra to make sure Grace had a home.  Thanks also to the sign guy for making the necessary changes so people would find their way.  It was also encouraging to meet guests. Imagine that, guests finding their way to a church that wasn’t meeting in the normal place.

Thanks to all.  I think it’s because we really believe in what we’re about. We have the awesome privilege of carrying the message of grace.  I’m pretty sure this is going to be an amazing year for Grace.  So, here we go!