What are your dreams for 2018? When it comes to our hopes and aspirations for the new year, some over-dream while others under-dream. If you’re an over-dreamer you tend to dream too much and do too little. You can jump from one unrealistic idea to another in milliseconds which can waste tons of time, squander finances and frustrate others. If you’re an under-dreamer (like me) you make the opposite mistake. You let yourself get stuck in the rut of conventionality, limit your potential and let fear not faith call the shots. Under-dreamers relate to former Israeli prime minister and Nobel peace prize recipient Shimon Peres who once said “My greatest mistake is that my dreams were too small”.
God has a lot to say about dreamers and dreaming. He calls His people to dream big dreams that are productive not destructive. What do big but productive dreams look like? Join us this Sunday (1/7/18) as we begin a new three-week series called Dream Big. In week one we will look at the big dream Jesus has for His church. As we look at Ephesians 4:1-16 we will identify four things Jesus wants His followers around the world to do better and bigger as they head into 2018. In addition to this powerful time in God’s Word, we will celebrate the Lord’s Supper in our 9:00 AM, 10:45 AM and 5:00 PM worship services. When you combine all that with our wonderful worship and our “Best in the West” North Ridge Family you have a recipe for a super Sunday as we kick off a great year together.
I am so looking forward to being back with you and your crew this week. I had a nice but very cold weeklong visit with my mom in Chicago last week. I should be thawed out by Sunday but just in case I may need a few extra hugs and warm welcomes this week. Finally, as I begin my 22nd year here at North Ridge, I can’t tell you how much I love and appreciate your amazing friendship and partnership in ministry. I am so excited about what I sense God has for us in the coming year and look forward to doing this great adventure with you. You rock!
Sure do love you,
Some Of This Coming Week’s Scripture Passages: (Your One-A-Day Vitamin)
Ephesians 4:1-6 Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God. Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love. Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace. For there is one body and one Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all, in all, and living through all.
Ephesians 4:7-12 But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. This is why it says: “When He ascended on high, He took many captives and gave gifts to His people.” (What does “He ascended” mean except that He also descended to the lower, earthly regions? He who descended is the very one who ascended higher than all the heavens, in order to fill the whole universe.) So Christ Himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up
Ephesians 4:13-16 This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ. Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of His body, the church. He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love,
Matthew 25:41-45 Then the King will turn to those on the left and say, ‘Away with you, you cursed ones, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his demons. For I was hungry, and you didn’t feed Me. I was thirsty, and you didn’t give Me a drink. I was a stranger, and you didn’t invite Me into your home. I was naked, and you didn’t give Me clothing. I was sick and in prison, and you didn’t visit Me.’ “Then they will reply, ‘Lord, when did we ever see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and not help You?’ “And He will answer, ‘I tell you the truth, when you refused to help the least of these My brothers and sisters, you were refusing to help Me.’
Psalm 133:1 How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!
John 1:14, 17 The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth…. For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
2 Thessalonians 3:10-12 For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: “The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.” We hear that some among you are idle & disruptive. They are not busy; they are busybodies. Such people we command and urge in the Lord Jesus Christ to settle down and earn the food they eat.