Welcome to our family! We are a welcoming bunch of Jesus followers who don't take ourselves too seriously! We are the church all week long... but we try to get together at least once a week at our celebration service at 10:45. ) You can even check us out in advance by listening to our services, watching the video, or reading the bulletins. Just click the menus above.
Weather permitting, join us for an informal Picnic In The Park at Riverside Park this Sunday about 12:45 p.m. Bring lawn chairs, beverages, and whatever you'd like to eat or share. We will have a small barbecue along.
Our SERVE team leaves this Sunday at 10:00 a.m. (headed to High River for a week of service). Please keep them in your prayers!
Bringing People Into The Caring Community Of Christ
June 29, 2015 - "Not Your Own Interests" Edition
Good morning. I've been reading the new gripping book by Charles Martin called "Water From My Heart". Let me share a few paragraphs with you.
(Set in Nicaragua): "Let me tell you something about that lady. When her husband was sick last year, the medicine he needed was very expensive. Most people in his condition die. But Anna would work all day in the coffee plantation, then walk down the mountain at dusk to the peanut fields and work all night, by moonlight, digging up peanuts with her bare hands. She slept in the field for an hour or two before dawn; then she'd hide her peanut bag and walk back up the mountain to check on her husband and then make it to work on time. It'd take her three to four days to fill a hundred pound bag with peanuts, and for that bag, they'd pay her ten dollars."
"'When I first traveled to the States to study, I was struck by how everyone I encountered spend their days working feverishly to make enough money to buy a better tomorrow. Here, people are content - they buy what they need today and leave tomorrow to God. These people don't have a death grip on their life here. They hold it loosely because they're not in control of it in the first place, and -'. She paused, weighing her words. 'In their experience, it can be ripped form their hands no matter how tightly they squeeze it.'"
"Leena was something of a combination of the two. As tough as her environment demanded, tender at the drop of a hat; quick to speak but more apt to listen; modest in her dress but also comfortable in her confidence; beautiful not only in silence and passing glance, but even more so in action. Leena also possessed the one thing that neither Amanda nor Shelly did: presence. She commanded authority because she was first and foremost ready to serve those around her. She'd earned it. Her willingness to kneel down and clean the groin and bottom of a feces and urine soaked man, then kiss his forehead, put her on a pedestal unlike any other. I did not feel comfortable around her not because she made me feel uncomfortable, but because I felt counterfeit. Her willingness to stop, kneel, and serve amid filthy, embarrassing, and uncomfortable situations jarred something loose in me because I wasn't. I'd spent my life pursuing my comfort, not others'. Leena had not. A strange emotion shadowed me as we bumped down dirt roads in the middle of nowhere. I did not know what to call it, but 'unworthy' came about as close as anything."
The story captures not only the poverty experienced in Nicaragua compared to our standard of living here - but also how we tend to concentrate on our own comfort and happiness rather than on the comfort and happiness of others. Philippians 2:3-8 states: "Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others." Ouch! That's a pretty tall order. Let's make an effort today (and every day) to thank God for all the blessings He has given us - and to look at those around us with compassion ("water from our heart") and see how we may help.
P.S. "Water From My Heart", "a breathtaking story of a man driven by the hope of redemption", is absolutely worth the read!
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