Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Hallo StirFri Family,

James will be leading a study on Jason's sermon last week "Making Disciples".  To be ready for the study/discussion, you can go last Sunday's sermon link at the bottom HCC's spiffy new website, hcchome.org.

Have a blessed week!
 
~M&m

Schedule
7:30 Food
8:15 Welcome/announcements
8:20 Worship
8:30 Sharing
8:45 Word time
9:30 Prayer groups
10:00 End prayer group

Communion this Sunday.  Please try to be inside the sanctuary for this.  STIRFri tries to sit together Front center about the 7-8th row back.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Hi all!

Let's get together for dinner, fellowship and games at Dean's this Friday!  Please bring cash, as we will cater food from chinatown. Please do respond if you're coming so we can estimate for food accordingly.  =)  Looking forward to our groups hanging out together!

Park anywhere along the street.  Please do not block Dean's or neighbor's driveway =)

if u have ne questions here's my (michelle) number: ----------.  or u can call dean/ur sg leaders =)

Monday, January 19, 2015

Shalom and ahava!
(Peace and love in Hebrew)!



It may be more of a coincidence that this weekend of spurring others to love God as our Treasure (Friday word time), compassion for the least of us as Christ have loved us first (Sunday morning sermon), learning from Job's suffering and lack of love (one of the Sunday Schools), and a deacon's servanthood to others (in suffering, in compassion, and in other matters) be done well (Founder's evening service and deacon installation) have all more or less carried a similar message and motif thread(s): the love of God towards others. This similarity is carried also in the Retro SG Corner subsection below, dated mid-2012.


SERMON      SERIES

Previously:
http://www.houstonchinesechurch.org/content/resources/sermons/audio/2015/E011115.mp3
"Loving God as our Treasure" as parabled in Matthew 13:44-46

Do you love God as our Treasure, above all else? How do we help brothers and sisters in Christ love our God as our Treasure, whom we would gladly sell off our possessions for knowing and loving Him? Also, how are we making each other aware of what is not our true Treasure, ie. our idols we place before the Lord, and then realign one another towards Him?


Next time: (or social in lieu of)
http://www.hcchome.org/content/resources/sermons/audio/2015/E011815.mp3
"Compassion for the Least" as forewarned in Matthew 25:31-46

One of the points of the sermon I picked up from the pastor is that while acts of deeds do not in themselves lead to salvation, as we do not "work" towards salvation, they are evidence of salvation (he referenced the Book of James). So, in theme with this sermon, while acts of compassion do not "save" oneself, they are witnessed as evidence of one's salvation in Christ Jesus who had compassion for His oft-uncompassionate people. As the pastor concludes, compassionate for others is a big deal for Christ the Lord!



ABOUT THE BOOK OF     J    O     B

When comforting others in bereavement (or in suffering, or, imo, depression, failures in life, disappointment, etc.), options for the comforter to NOT consider are trying to find a solution to the situation (ie. attempting to fix the "problem") nor generating a criterion for blaming someone or something. People in bereavement are not in their right, stable mind and inner thoughts could range from extremes. How do people in the Book of Job play out this bleak situation of much loss on earth and family ... or rather, do they play it out in efforts to comfort and strengthen the bereaved well?

The protagonist - or antagonist - thinks that his children might have sinned (so he does not trust or has faith in his children) and goes ahead and sacrifices animals just in case they have. A one-liner retort from the wife in much stress and anger is met with an equally unloving rebuke from the husband also in bereavement of accepting the bad as well as the good from the Lord, which I originally thought was what professing Christians should do, but in light of this alternative context, must be a mask for something else - the grieving husband still is not completely broken down nor humbled enough to provide any semblance of comfort for his pained wife in order to, perhaps, protect his status of a most-holy man and maintain his pride and reputation as such. His "friends" traveled from afar to see him in his suffering and loss NOT to provide comfort but to yell at him for his "good deeds" self-glorification and condescending lectures-for-alms in his past;
when he is down in the pits and his spirit almost defeated, his "friends" continue to beat him down into the ground; the situation escalates and chapter-long verbal exchanges are recorded in Scripture.

So, the Book of Job is about suffering, yes, but it is also a book of very little love (of family, of friends, or of God) and a book of very great anger. This Book becomes less of a "Bible story" of sorts and becomes, well, almost a novel. Hopefully, to be continued...



== FOUNDERS ==

On being a deacon (plus, see Richard's msg of thanks below :) 

Much emphasis is for deacons to serve well (1 Timothy 3:13) - 
- Good service (unto the Lord in an excellent way) with ambition and obedience (being slaves to Jesus Christ) on behalf of others;
- To serve well is mindful of the avoidance of self-styled actions/behaviors/intentions and instead to commit (and re-commit) to being led by God's Word (submission) and under the tutelage of church elders;
- High standards (of a deacon) are tied to lofty rewards:
a) Influence to the church body;
b) Of a humble servant status;
c) Of being in good standing in sight of the church;
d) Being a great blessing to the people whom they have served.
- Service with faith, hope, energy, and gladness!
- Being in great confidence (in boldness and speech) of the faith in Christ Jesus, such that there will continue a growing confidence in the Lord that will be lived out in the lives of the deacon.

Congrats Richard! May the Lord bless your service!



P R A Y E R S

[google docs]



M U S I C O L O G Y

a) http://newtestamentchurch.org/friends/music/McCoy/MCoy2003-11.mp3
"Fellowship Medley" as recorded by The McCoy Family Singers in 2003 (home-grown in Texas!)

Some of the lyrics -
"I love you with the love of the Lord
Bind us together Lord"
http://newtestamentchurch.org/friends/music/McCoy/Songs.htm


b) http://loveforhispeople.blogspot.com/2014/05/hebrew-how-great-is-our-god-gadol.html
"How Great is our God” ("Gadol Elohai”) by Joshua Aaron

"Chorus:
Gadol Elohai
Shiru ki Gadol Elohai
Kol echad Yirei
Ki gadol Elohai

Bridge (Name above all names):
Shem me'al kol shem
Otcha raui le'halel
Libi yashir ki gadol Elohai


גדול אלוהי
שירו
כי גדול אלוהי
כל אחד יראה

כי גדול אלוהי

שם מְעַל כל שם
אותך ראוּי
להלל
ליבי ישיר כי
גדול אלוהי "


(Here is an interesting version of the popular hymn. Sung in Hebrew, mixed with contemporary Christian English. Tune and melody are the same, with a mix of traditional and Western instruments. Shots of Jerusalem and the Weeping Wall/Wailing Wall/Kotel.)


c) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q2T1csHUgF4
"How Great Thou Art" as performed by Carrie Underwood with Vince Gill

http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/carrieunderwood/howgreatthouart.html
'And when I think of God, His Son not sparing;
Sent Him to die, I scarce can take it in;
That on the Cross, my burden gladly bearing,
He bled and died to take away my sin.

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

When Christ shall come, with shout of acclamation,
And take me home, what joy shall fill my heart.
Then I shall bow, in humble adoration,
And then proclaim: "My God, how great Thou art!"'


d) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l-4JcZylU3c
Andraé Crouch's "The Blood Will Never Lose It's Power"
(R.I.P.)

http://www.lyriczz.com/lyrics/andrae-crouch/59113-the-blood-will-never-lose-its-power/
"Verse 2:
It [ie. The blood that Jesus shed for me, from Verse 1] soothes my doubts and calms my fears,
and it dries all my tears;
the blood that gives me strength
from day to day,
it will never lose its power." 



R E T R O     SG     C O R N E R

a) From the archives dated Monday, July 30, 2012:
"Minister [Person] asked whether we feel a thirst for God (John 4:1-18) because many in our time have spiritual adipsia. Let us STIR our affections for God through hands-on obedience. [...]"


b) From the archives dated Saturday, July 28, 2012:
"This week's passage: Philipians 4:4-6, Romans 11:35-36
Rejoice in the Lord always!
We can rejoice and be reasonable because the Lord is near
Everything belongs to God, He knows everything, His ways are unsearchable
Every breath we take and every laughter is a gift from God

Let us be confident in all times that God is at hand!"


c) From a testimony dated Monday, July 23, 2012:
"I awkwardly said hello to a familiar face after Sunday School one week, but I recently found out this man was quite touched by the initiation. Turns out he is hard of hearing, and though he enjoys socializing it was much work so he often kept to himself. It reminded me that truly, you never know how much anyone is suffering, where anyone is in their life journey.

In Women’s Bible Study, I learned Paul wrote a doxology (Ephesians 3:20-21) in prison. A doxology is an expression and outpouring of praise, worship, and honor to God. Paul set the example that right in the depths of our difficulties, we need to remember the power, splendor, and majesty of our loving God. [Person] encouraged us to imagine what the end would be like, such as taking turns clinking glasses to toasts of how great our God is. [Different person] continues with, “That’s the reason why everything’s not just cut and dried for us. There may be much more going on in your situation than you know. Something down through the generations may be greatly and positively impacted because of your experience now. Things for the good of man, things for the glory of God.”

Thus this coming Wednesday let’s unpack Philippians 4:4-6 and the doxology Romans 11:33-36."


d) From the archives dated Monday, July 16, 2012:
"This afternoon [Person] was on the radio KSBJ sharing one of the many specific experiences that inspired his new song: “I know mountains can move / I've seen what You can do / in my weakness / So my heart will believe / If I wait I will see / My God doing, what only He can do.” To find where God is at work, you start praying. As Ping said at Women’s Bible Study, how sweet it is to pray and have God answer our prayers, knowing God’s hand was in it, doing what only He can do (Ezekiel 37:1-14; I Corinthians 3:6). As we sang in the English and Mandarin Chinese services at HCC this past Sunday, 'tis so sweet to trust in Jesus!

Let us be reminded of this security in Jesus (John 15:1-16 [...]"





  As always, should additional prayer requests be needed
  during the week, please let us know.

  Have a good week and lets keep each other in prayer.


God Bless,

Calvin



MISC - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=52VHVmytHCo
10 You Are My All in All
11 O Lord To You

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Lei Ho Ma, StirFri Family,

This week, William and Calvin will be co-leading the discussion on this past Sunday's sermon on Matthew 13:44-46, Loving God as our Treasure.  The link to the sermon and the others is here:

http://www.houstonchinesechurch.org/content/resources/sermons/index.asp

Let us continue to reflect on the sermon throughout the week, and come ready to discuss!  Have a blessed week!

Schedule

7:30 Food
8:15 Welcome/announcements
8:20 Worship
8:30 Sharing
8:45 Word time
9:30 Prayer groups
10:00 End prayer group
 
~M&m

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Welcome 2015!


Random tidbits from the Bible:

“Idol” means “no god,” i.e. the worldly gods some may worship is no god and definitely not God.
“Eve” means "life-bearer” or “giver of life."
“Adam” or adamah is relatable to “ground” or the dust of the earth from which he was formed and into which the breath of God was given. ESV note suggest that "adam" may be used as a generic term denoting male and female.




ABOUT THE BOOK OF     J    O     B

Tidbits from the Sunday School concerning the Book of JOB:
What are the motives that are imputed into the characters in the Book of Job - Job himself, his children, his wife, his neighbors near and far? How do we see them beyond their now status of "Bible characters" and see them as human beings, with inner motives, concerns, fears, and desires as humans have? Are we careful not to project ourselves and this-world standards into the "Bible characters" we read into and esteem? Would we see Job as righteous according to OT standards of the Law of Moses (more likely) or as righteous according to NT new commands and rectifications of the redeeming love and grace of Jesus Christ (probably not)?

Then why, as proposed by the speaker, is it that no one appears to love Job, who is a righteous man and who serves the Lord according to His commandments (at the time, minus any mention of NT commandments)? An OT-time righteous man whose actions and behaviors might have irked others near him, as he reminds them directly or indirectly how "less" righteous they are (there were a scarcity of OT laws concerning humility, pre-Job period)? Whose high-and-mighty demeanor might have rubbed his children the wrong way and shoved them away from him? Whose wife, who also lost her children as he have, did not receive loving or comforting words from the husband in her time of despair and depression (not just assuming she had a grudge against him for the longest time)? Whose "friends" come from afar to rebuke him and have him taste his own medicine of "holier than thou"?

This was a different reading of Job than one I am used to. Here, Job is the bad guy, and not so righteous (at least by NT standards) as I thought.



SERMON      SERIES

Previously:
http://www.houstonchinesechurch.org/content/resources/sermons/audio/2015/E010415.mp3
"The Greatest of These is Love" as delineated in First Corinthians 13
We can do and say many things, but if not done in love, then it means nothing, to others perhaps and especially to the Lord our God. Model: God loves us so much, but we really do not deserve it (really, we deserve judgment). Skipping to the end of the paragraph: Love endures and never ends.
The ending paragraph in the chapter: "For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known." (v. 12) Now, on earth and in this life line, we see dimly. We have seen love falter and sin creep in. People wrong another. Laziness, dullness, awkwardness, foolishness, and selfishness are witnessed in this and many lifetimes. People vie another. Mistrust and conflict may occur; congregations might fight and break up. Things of this lifetime do not last. Remember, instead, the vision of heaven. "What will last is the love among God's people." When face to face, what is partial now will no long be dim later. What is prophesied now, though we only see in part currently, will be completed and fulfilled in the future. Only then we will see and know fully. Only then will see love in its fullness. Remember that love endures.

Thanks Kathryn for a peek into your book!
Forgive others; love others who are hard to love.
http://www.gotquestions.org/agape-love.html
"[L]ove others sacrificially."
"God loves because that is His nature and the expression of His being. He loves the unlovable and the unlovely (us!), not because we deserve to be loved, but because it is His nature to love us, and He must be true to His nature and character."
https://www.christiancourier.com/articles/78-challenge-of-agape-love-the
'The discussion of “love” thus serves a twofold function in 1 Corinthians 13. First, it seeks to regulate selfish abuses of spiritual gifts; second, love’s abiding nature is contrasted with the temporal character of miraculous gifts.'
"Love patiently waits and attempts to win over one’s adversary." Gentle disposition. Beware of jealousy. Avoid bragging about your feats. Genuine humility. Determined politeness. In the interest of others (think Jesus) over that of the self. Patience and forgiveness. "[N]ever rejoice when evil prevails" or flattery. Supports and uplifts. "Love will give the benefit of the doubt." Optimistic. "[...] not easily discouraged. [...] on God, or on others."

Additionally, I finished up a secular novel, which oddly in later chapters has the narrator going to church to seek reconciliation with loved ones, odd since before during the plot development when he was, well, sinful, the book never mentioned church or anything remotely religious. When non-Christian Americans think about church, do they only think about going there to seek forgiveness and guidance ... and Xmas service? Anyways, there are reflections on love and life lessons in the book that might be apt here (p. 120, abridged):
"[...]
It has made me wonder if perhaps there is more to our relationships than mortality portends. If perhaps some things are forever in another realm, where clocks stop and nothing remains but the bonds we have forged through love. That, and the lessons we've learned.
"Perhaps. The lessons do remain. I learned much last year. I learned that the measure of life is revealed in the quality of our relationships: with God, our families, our fellowmen.
"I learned that the greatest threat to love is not circumstance, but the absence of attention. We do not neglect others because we have ceased to love; rather we cease to love others because we have neglected them.
"I've learned that each day is a miracle unearned.
"I've learned that while life is ephemeral - a vapor - love is not. In short I have learned what matters and what does not.
"I don't know what my future holds or even in whose hands it lies, but I know where I am and what I have, and it's enough.[...]"
(According to the backcover, the author's books often center around inspiration and healing.)

~
~

Next time:
http://www.houstonchinesechurch.org/content/resources/sermons/audio/2015/E011115.mp3
http://www.houstonchinesechurch.org/content/resources/sermons/2015/20150111en.pdf
"Loving God as our Treasure" as parabled in Matthew 13:44-46


P R A Y E R S

[google docs]


M U S I C O L O G Y

a) http://worshiptogether.com/songs/songdetail.aspx?iid=578812 (with artist's introduction)
"Once Again" by Matt Redman (©1995 Thankyou Music/PRS)

"Verse 2
D            D/C#  D2/B
Now You are exalted
A
To the highest place
G                D/F#
King of the heavens
G                A
Where one day I’ll bow
D        D/C#    D2/B              A
But for now I marvel at this saving grace
G            A                Bm  A
And I’m full of praise once again
G             A                D
I’m full of praise once again"



b) Bluegrass, fiddle, and country (or is the correct term Southern gospel?) from the radio (actually cannot locate the actual song, but these are also nice from the group):

i) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lXGg24WKN3Y
"I Have a Father Who Can” (live from 1992) as performed by The Isaacs

http://artists.letssingit.com/isaacs-lyrics-i-have-a-father-who-can-1bqfp2t#axzz3NnGDsAtY
"Chorus:
Now he sits high and looks low and guides my feet where ever I go.
When I don't understand, I have a father, I have a father who can.

Verse Two:
I cannot make a cloud and ascend it in the sky
I cannot love humanity so much that I would die
I cannot even name the stars or count the many grains of sand
Oh, but I have a father, a heavenly father who can"


ii) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rvgMSRWao30
“Sweet Beulah Land”, the version as sung by  Jimmy Yeary & The Isaacs

http://www.lyrics.net/lyric/5214769
(original by Squire Parsons © 1973 composed and written)
"Beulah Land (Beulah Land) I'm longing for you (I'm longing for you)
And some day (And some day) on thee I'll stand (Someday we will stand)
There my home (There my home) shall be eternal (Eternal)
Beulah Land, sweet Beulah Land"


iii) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wozx4eXPVcU
"From the Depths of My Heart” (live from 1992) as performed by The Isaacs

https://play.google.com/music/preview/Tqeyjgro6kf3xhi26mejg63xe2e?lyrics=1&utm_source=google&utm_medium=search&utm_campaign=lyrics
"Chorus:
From the depths of my heart Lord I'm calling out to you for
I need you here to lead me, I've done all that I can do Lord I'm trying
to do my part to see that others make it thru and tho I know I don't
Deserve you, still I'm trying hard to serve you from the depths of my heart."


(Sorry about the hair and the faded colors :) Looking at their blog http://isaacsmusic.blogspot.com, it appears they have modernized a bit to this century, which appears to be the way other country acts have gone.)


(BTW, I found a stash of country gospel tunes online -
http://www.classic-country-song-lyrics.com/countrygospelsonglyrics.html)



c) Rhythm and Blues from the Compact Disc:

i) 1.   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ztccFeIjqo (a cover song of a 1982 song; track #5 with Pastor John P. Kee)
Isaac Carree’s "We Are Not Ashamed” (live)

http://www.lyricsmania.com/we_are_not_ashamed_lyrics_isaac_carree.html
"God's word, His word it is healing for every nation
His word, His word is the power unto salvation
Gods word came all the way from glory
Set the captives free, gave eternity

We are not ashamed
We are not ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ
For we have everlasting life”

   2.   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JtCc7iE8oaI (I believe this is an extended [slightly altered?] cover of the instrumental opening track [#1])
"We Are Not Ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ”, as piano-ed by Sam (?, original by Andraé Crouch © 1982) in 2012

(Would like to learn how to play :)

(Update: I just found out from the radio that Crouch passed away in the last 48 hours. R.I.P. Mr. Andraé Crouch. )


ii) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yuS5JGOTdl0 (track #10)
Isaac Carree's "Shout It Out” (©2009)

https://www.musixmatch.com/lyrics/Isaac-Carree/Shout-It-Out
"Shout, don't you worry 'bout who's watching you
Shout, they just might be going through it too
Shout on your job in the break room
Maybe that's where you'd get your breakthrough, whoa ho

Open your mouth, let it come out
Did you know what I'm talking ‘bout”


iii) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qRcoB10LW80 (track #11)
Isaac Carree’s “Simply Redeemed” (no copyright date on disc linear notes)

http://www.lyriczz.com/lyrics/isaac-carree/165126-simply-redeemed/
"I am a Christian Do you know what that means?
It means I'm far from perfect Simply redeemed
Bought with a purpose, Purchased by love
It's not a form of religion, It's a gift from above
I am not perfect, I have been redeemed"



d) (Not sure what genre … gospel?) from the Compact Disc:

i) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uNTl7baWydI (track #3)
"Made to Live for You” as performed by the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir

http://www.newreleasetuesday.com/lyricsdetail.php?lyrics_id=62111
"I was made to live for You

[Verse 2]
No matter where I go You see me
You see me
Jesus You're never far away
Help me to follow where
You lead me
You lead me
I open my heart to You today

Lord I give my life as a sacrifice for You
I give everything as an offering to You”


ii) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9136grYodBU (#6)
“Jesus I Love You” as performed by the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir

http://www.urbanlyrics.com/lyrics/brooklyntabernaclechoir/jesusiloveyou.html
"[Verse 1:]
Not because I've been so faithful,
not because I've been so good;
You've always been there for me
to provide my every need.

You were there when I was lonely,
You were there in all my pain,
guiding my footsteps,
shelter from the rain.”


iii) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=44_MpqM57JY (#9)
"I Surrender” featuring Ryan Barnett and the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir

http://textovipjesama.com/tekst/863617/i-surrender (Italian site?)
Verse 2
"Humble and broken I come to You
I'm trusting and waiting
To see what You will do
Lord You know what's best
And at Your feet I find my rest
I'm coming to You again
Lord here I am

I surrender I surrender"




F I L M O L O G Y

Saw a classic recently.
When Lady Bernadette was conversing with an elder lady nun (?), the elder looked straight at her, eyes piercing through the youthful and humble Bernadette. Many - priests, kings, nuns, the educated, etc. - have sought the sight and vision of the Virgin Mary, for years, so why did Mary in heavenly light appear to a lowly, inexperienced Lady? None other than Bernadette could see Mary speaking from the beyond; even though a crowd surrounded Bernadette, only she could see. Mary spoke directly to Bernadette as if she almost was a real person, except with all the dramatic lighting and audio effects (umm, cue Lion King - Mufasa calling Simba from the sky).

For young Bernadette and the elder nun, the conversation is as follows -
(Digital Video Disc chapter 19, past the halfway point in the film)

NUN: What do you know of (to?) suffering?
BERNADETTE: [a pause, then] Nothing.
NUN: In all our [the church] history, the chosen ones were all those who have suffered. Why did God chose you? Why not me?
BERNADETTE: I cannot answer that.
NUN: I know what it is to suffer. Look at my eyes. They burn like the very fires of hell. Why? Because they need sleep. [tearing up] They need rest which I would not give them. My throat is parched from constant prayer. My hands are null [?] from serving God in humiliation. My body is pain-wrecked from stone floors. Yes, I have suffered, because I know it is the only true road to heaven. And I who have tortured myself cannot feel the Blessed Virgin, [eyes quite wet] how can you who have never felt pain to say that you have seen her?
BERNADETTE: [Calm, respectful] I don’t know why I was chosen. You are a hundred times more worthy.
NUN: How can I find rest? If only you can give me some proof, maybe then I can believe. [Slowly turns her face from BERNADETTE and faces the lighted window] Then maybe the monsters of doubt and hate will stop consuming my soul. For the love of God, just give me some proof.
BERNADETTE: I wish I could help you. But I have never suffered. But I never … [stops mid-sentence, ponders] … maybe I can help you.
[Mid-to-full shot of the NUN facing, listening with hope.]
It may be there is proof for you.

[Next Scene:
I don’t really understand the next scene, but a physician comes out of a room with two inquiring elder nuns and declares that she had TB all this time and wonders why she did not know it. A realization comes upon the NUN.]

Next Scene:
The NUN speaking to BERNADETTE then goes to a chapel/convent and faces the rugged cross with Jesus hanging from it.
NUN: [voice breaking] I have tried to storm the gates of heaven. I sacrificed myself. I know now that we must be chosen. That we must be gracious to Your gracious child. [Bowing, burying her face in her hands.] God forgive me. I was persecuted her [BERNADETTE] and did not believe her because I was filled with hate and envy. God, help me serve this chosen soul for the rest of my days. God help me. God help me.

~
Sound familiar? In more matters than one or on more levels than one?


(Most probably this subsection will not be weekly, as it takes a while to view a film and even more time to dissect it and then pen a thoughtful critique of it. Plus, I do not believe I watch films, much less religious ones, as much anymore.)




R E T R O     SG     C O R N E R

a) From the archives dated Wednesday, June 13, 2012:
"Minister [Person] preached on Jesus' declaration that He is the Light of the world (John 8:12). Just like black light shows all the stains we can't see with our naked eye, Jesus shows stains we don't want exposed. We are like rats and roaches who scurry away from the Light. However, if we admit that we are lost and blind, we are very thankful for the Light in guiding us. In fact, He is the only light into the presence of the Father of Lights. Amazingly, He then transforms and calls us to be the light of the world!"  

b) From the archives dated Wednesday, June 6, 2012:
'[Pastor] talked about Jesus' first "I am" statement this past Sunday. Soon after in [person's] car, on the radio was a pastor wrapping up their church's two-year journey (like us, LOL!) through the Gospel of John. Just as [Pastor] titled his sermon "Choose this day," [Pastor] pointed out that John's goal in writing it was so that we would BELIEVE: But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name (John 20:31).

For those of us in Stirfri who already do believe, what continues to STIR your affections for Christ?'

c) From the archives dated Monday, June 4, 2012:
"This week's passage: Philippians 3:7-12
Why do we pursue God?
1. To know Him. 2. To work out our justification 3. We're broken (Philippians 3:12) 4. Because Christ made us His own (Ephesians 1:3-4)
Questions:
Can you/will you chase Him?
What would it look like if we really strove and desired to know Christ?
What does it mean to press towards God?"




As always, should additional prayer requests be needed during the week, please let us know.

  Have a good week and lets keep each other in prayer.


God Bless,

Calvin

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Hello StirFri Family,

Starting this Friday, we're going to begin following the HCC sermon series for our Word time.  Basically, we will review the passage and the main points that were preached.  Afterwards, we will delve deeper and discuss our thoughts and questions on the topic, especially with respect to how it relates to people in our life stage.

This week we will be reflecting on Geoff's talk this past Sunday.  If you haven't had a chance to listen to the sermon or would like to refresh on it, here is a link to the audio for the sermon: http://www.houstonchinesechurch.org/content/resources/sermons/audio/2015/E010415.mp3


In effort to end on time and give a chance for people to return home at a consistent time, let's try to stick with the following schedule:

7:30 Food
8:15 Welcome/announcements
8:20 Worship
8:30 Sharing
8:45 Word time
9:30 Prayer groups
10:00 End prayer group

Happy New Year, excited to see yall on Friday!
 
~M&m