I hope this week means something special to you and your family as we remember the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, and what He has accomplished through it all. We will celebrate Jesus’ atoning death on the cross and His glorious resurrection this weekend as we gather together for a communion service on Friday and Easter service on Sunday. Of course, we live with the impact of what happened at Calvary circa two thousand years ago on a daily basis, but we set apart this one week each year to commemorate the beautiful work God has done for us in washing away our sins through the sacrifice of His Son. This year, my wife and I—and our family at large—are experiencing the impact of Christ’s resurrection more tangibly. As we said goodbye to Margaret (my mother-in-law) earlier this week, we realize that the hope we have in Jesus’ death and resurrection is so real and immediately relevant to all of us who have this hope of eternal life. Death confronts us with the question of, “What happens next?” and in the resurrection of Jesus, we learn the answer to this question—eternal life in the presence of the almighty Creator; our Lord and King. The sad thing is that many people around us are living in this broken world without much hope. Please come and pray with us for the mission of our church to bring this hope to the nations as we gather for the prayer vigil between Good Friday and Saturday morning. Please also join us this weekend to celebrate this inextinguishable hope we have in Jesus, and to honour the Lord who has given His life to bring us into the fold of God’s grace. May His glory be known and praised this weekend!
Iron sharpens iron. We have heard this expression many times over the years. It’s an odd expression if you are not familiar with the concept that it takes a higher grade of steel to actually forge, bend, mould, shape, and sharpen a lower grade of steel, into the desired object of the maker's choice.
This expression found its way into Proverbs 27:17: “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” This is one of the reasons why we appoint pastors as overseers of our church families. Pastors serve many functions, but one of those functions is to keep speaking truth into the lives of the people attending church in an effort to “sharpen” us into the people that God desires us to become.
God uses many people to sharpen us. This is not gender specific, nor is the role of the “sharpener” delegated to a certain class of individuals called pastors or clergy. On April 21st, in the SDBC Chapel, we will be hearing from a man who has been shaped and sharpened by other people in his life to become a highly successful CFL quarterback for the BC Lions. Travis Lulay has found great success in his football career, as well as in his life, due to others who invested in him along the way.
The SDBC Men’s Ministry will host a breakfast beginning at 8AM where we will share a meal together and hear from Travis Lulay as he shares his faith journey with us. His story will challenge us and sharpen us to become our best. One of the great things about events like this is by just joining in, we actually sharpen each other in our personal relationships as we continue to develop our own relationship, but with the added bonus of hearing from a genuine sports star.
Tickets for this event will be going on sale this Sunday, March 25th at the Spotlight Table. You will also be able to purchase tickets online. We expect to sell out because of limited space. Will you consider coming and allowing God to use a man like Travis Lulay to sharpen and challenge you in your faith walk?
Alpha has run its course to completion at SDBC. This program is a video series that is geared to open up a conversation with people who know very little of the Christian faith, or perhaps know nothing at all about Jesus and what his place in Christianity is all about.
Like Christianity, Alpha is all about people. It is a program that introduces people to the person of Jesus Christ and teaches us about God, his love for us, and what it means to be a believer in Jesus.
To put on a series like Alpha requires a team. We had 25 men and women involved for each of the nine weeks who came early on Sunday afternoons to pray, serve, and listen to our guests who came to watch and discuss the videos. These 25 people were faithful to the task and came prepared each week to lead a discussion, but mostly they just listened to others as they processed questions they had about their faith journey.
We also had nine different community groups come each week and serve up food for the 40 to 50 weekly attendees. Our guests were treated to a good dose of people sacrificially loving like Jesus by giving time and resources on a Sunday afternoon. We started with 29 guests at the beginning and finished with about 20 who completed the full nine weeks. This was a total community effort!
As a result of the nine week course, one woman made a decision to follow Jesus. I am certain from some comments we received, that there are three, perhaps more, people who are seriously investigating a relationship with Jesus, because of Alpha. I am thrilled this has happened. Often, making a decision to accept Jesus as Saviour happens suddenly; other times it requires a time of processing as the Holy Spirit leads us into faith.
Will you join me and the rest of our amazing Alpha servants, in praying for each one of the attendees of Alpha, that they may begin a relationship with the one true God and his Son Jesus Christ?
The feedback from those serving was overwhelmingly positive for repeating Alpha again soon. It is exciting to be with friends, engaging in a safe and protected environment, free of pressure to consider the claims of the bible and of Christ. We look forward to our next Alpha series where perhaps more people can come find a new relationship with our saviour Jesus.