I’ll just say it: I’m bummed to not be soaking in the book of Acts this week. I know that the whole preaching/ teaching thing is not about me. I should be bigger than this, but I love the book of Acts and to be honest, it’s pretty fun to develop messages from a book that kind of (please don’t let this out) preaches itself.
The last 2 weekends have been so powerful.
OCTOBER 14/16 – (sorry no pics from this one) We featured a My Journey from John and Christina Kohlenberg who spent an amazing / gnarly / life-changing / eye-opening / heart-braking year with Samaritan’s Purse working at a cholera clinic in Haiti. Their stories and their learning were so powerful.
The message, “When Your Life’s A Wreck” came out of Acts 27.
LAST WEEKEND – We wrapped up a series that in some ways spanned two years. This fall we followed Paul around starting in Acts 13. The final installment of the story finds Paul entering Rome, the ends of the earth… JUST LIKE JESUS SAID! (See Acts 1:8). N.T. Wright calls Acts 28 the oddest ending of any book in the Bible and I wholeheartedly agree! I called it a NON-ENDING ENDING. Which is so odd for an author like Luke. His Greek is excellent. His ability to weave a narrative together is unmatched. So what’s the deal with the lame ending? Now here comes the point… the book was never met to end. It doesn’t have an ending. We are still living this story! Thousands of years later and thousands of miles away we’re living it!
Getting all dramatic with it!
So as we took communion, we had people bless people with “traveling mercies” to wish them the presence of Jesus on their epic Journey. This was all about moving the bookmark of your life right there at the end of Acts 28. We are ACTS! We ARE Vintage US!
I love when I see people living it out! You who follow me on Twitter or Facebook may recall that I did a memorial service on Monday for Ashley, a 24-year-old girl. I know here through her dad, who has been coming to Journey for a couple of years and is very new in his connection with God. But he feels like he has community with the people who sit around him at our 9:00 service. He knows their names, and feels connected. Dennis (the dad) just hasn’t been able to walk through the doors and attend a service since his daughter passed. At the service on Monday, I said, “o.k. Buddy, it’s time!” He said he’d see me Sunday. I was praying for him all weekend asking God to move and get him there. He showed up around 8:45 and almost turned around, but there they were, his section of friends. Most of them didn’t even know until then, they just knew something was wrong. When I walked into the Worship Center I looked over and saw him there (very cool) and then noticed that he was surrounded (way more cool!). I walked over and felt like I was swimming in love.
If we open our eyes we will see, we will notice the things that make it an unspeakable privilege to be included in this eklesia, this indefinable thing, this people, this body, this church thing.
Our band covered “You Are a Tourist” by Death Cab for Cutie – amazingly it was like it was written for the weekend service.