Monday, December 30, 2013

Join us for the GREATER 2014- 21 Day Fast (January 5-26, 2014)!

The theme for year 3 of Decade of Destiny is, "GREATER," based on the best-selling book from Steven Furtick.  The Bible says in John 14:12, "I tell you the truth, anyone who believes in me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works, because I am going to be with the Father (NLT)."  I refuse to believe that God wants us to settle for mediocre lives, He desires that we would cooperate with Him to do greater things for His Kingdom.  Do you want to break out of mediocrity?  Greater things begin with greater prayer!  Michele and I invite you to join us over these upcoming 21 days (beginning January 5, 2014) of prayer and fasting. We are looking forward to seeing God move in our lives and the life of our church family. We know that He will work in ways we could never imagine. Together, we will take this journey and we will go the distance to discover God’s plan. We wish you all of God’s best during this time! Let’s get ready for GREATER things in 2014!  Here's the schedule: 
  • Kick-Off- Jan. 5, The GREATER 2014 Fast begins during our morning services!
  • Read a copy of Pastor Steven Furtick's book, "Greater."
  • 21 Day Bible Reading Plan For The Fast-  click here!
  • FL United Service- Jan. 8 @ 7:00 p.m. (Baptism)
  • End the fast- Jan. 26th during our morning services. (Year 3 Decade Of Destiny pledges will be received)
You can follow us on facebook (/freedomlife.tv) and twitter (@freedomlife_tv) for encouragement & resources during the fast!

The Information Below Is Taken Directly From JentezenFranklin.Org.  Click Here For More Information about Jentezen Franklin ministries!  

Because there’s more to life…more to faith…more to you—God gives you the formula for success. It boils down to two words: God first. That’s where God began. Look at your Bible. What are the very first words written?  “In the beginning, God…” (Genesis 1:1)  God first! That is the priority that should rule our lives. In Matthew 6:33, Jesus tells us to, “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness.”  How do we seek Him first? I can never say it enough—through fasting and prayer.  Fasting is a discipline that helps to shift our priorities. It puts Him first and allows us to hear His plan, receive His direction and His blessings. If you want success in your life, in your marriage, in your work—putting God first is the key.  When God is our first priority, He can use us to help others. God hears the cry of the oppressed and the unsaved. The words of Isaiah 58:6-14 give us insight into how significantly God views the power of fasting.

BIBLICAL FASTING IS REFRAINING FROM FOOD FOR A SPIRITUAL PURPOSE.

Fasting is a spiritual discipline designed to better connect us with God. As a church, we are fasting in order to deepen our relationship with God and to walk in step with His plan and purpose. The best way to do this is to redirect our food source or something else of importance to us. This is accomplished through substituting our regular food intake with Bible reading, praying and journaling. The overall goal is to experience a genuine hunger for spending time with God. According to the Bible, there are three duties of every Christian: give, pray, and fast. Fasting takes a lot of discipline and strength – strength which you can only receive from God. Your private discipline will bring you rewards in Heaven, as stated in Matthew 6. When you give God your first through fasting, prayer, and giving at the beginning of the year, you set the course for the entire year. 

WHY SHOULD I FAST? 

1. Are you in need of healing or a miracle?
2. Do you need the tender touch of God in your life?
3. Is there a dream inside you that only He can make possible?
4. Are you in need of a fresh encounter?
5. Do you desire a deeper, more intimate and powerful relationship with the Lord?
6. Are you ready to have heightened sensitivity to the desires of God?
7. Do you need to break away from bondages that have been holding you hostage?
8. Is there a friend or loved one that needs Salvation?
9. Do you desire to know God's will for your life?

We want to encourage you to target your prayers during the fast. Two specific areas we will be focusing on together are leadership and finances. The Bible instructs us to continually pray for our leaders (1 Timothy 2:1-2). When we lift up our leaders, here in the United States and around the world, we can expect God's peace in our lives and in our nation. 

Another great promise, from the book of Isaiah, proclaims that the chosen fast will "undo the heavy burdens and let the oppressed go free." We are living in tough economic times and we know that many people are under a financial burden. As we come together to fast and pray, we believe that your burdens will be lifted and that financial blessings will be released! 

We encourage you to seek the Lord in prayer for your decisions about your fast. Ask the Lord to show you areas to target during your time of fasting and prayer. We believe that, as we pray and seek God and give Him our best at the first of the year, He will bless our ENTIRE year (Matthew 6:33)!

FASTING OPTIONS

Full Fast- Drink only liquids (you establish the number of days). 
The Daniel Fast- Eat no meat, no sweets, and no bread. Drink water and juice. Eat fruits and vegetables. 
3-Day Fast- This fast can be a Full Fast, a Daniel Fast, or a fast giving up at least one item of food. 
Partial Fast- A partial fast is from 6:00 am to 3:00 pm or from sun up to sundown. This fast can be a Full Fast, a Daniel Fast, or a fast giving up at least one item of food.
Media fast- Turn off the computer and TV and focus your thoughts and energies on God's voice and His Word.

9 TYPES OF FASTS THAT ARE FOUND IN THE BIBLE

Whether you need healing, direction, protection, finances or something else from God today, His Word is full of people that faced similar hardships and overcame them through fasting and prayer.  The Bible talks about the 9 different types of fasts that believers have done in seeking the miraculous to invade their circumstance. They are: 

One: THE DISCIPLES FAST
“The Disciples Fast” is a fast that frees you from addictions to sin or besetting sins as referred to in Hebrews 12:1. Besetting sins are those that ensnare us and hinder us from achieving God’s purpose for our lives. In Mark, chapter 9, Christ’s disciples were frustrated because they could not cast out an evil spirit. Jesus said, “This kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting” (Mark 9:29). Through fasting we can break free from the addictions and habits that are not pleasing to God.“Is this not the fast that I have chosen; To loose the bonds of wickedness, To undo the heavy burdens, To let the oppressed go free, And that you break every yoke?” (Isaiah 58:6). 

Two: THE EZRA FAST 
“The Ezra Fast” is found in the Book of Ezra, the eighth chapter (Ezra 8:21). Ezra had been given silver and gold to take back to Jerusalem from King Artaxerxes (Ezra 7:14-17). But there was a problem — thieves! Maybe you feel like thieves have stolen what belongs to you financially. When Ezra faced an uncertain financial journey, what did he do? He declared a fast and God answered his prayer! If you will fast, pray and obey God’s commandments, He said you will be blessed (Deuteronomy 28:2). 

Three: THE SAMUEL FAST 
When the Phillistines were preparing to attack Israel, Samuel declared a fast for national revival, Samuel told the people to fast and seek God to return His presence to the nation (1 Samuel 7:3). our society today critically needs believers who will take “The Samuel Fast” — a fast for national revival. “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land” (2 Chronicles 7:14). We can return God’s presence and glory to our personal lives and our nation if we fast, pray and seek Him now. 

Four: THE ELIJAH FAST 
One of the most powerful fasts is “The Elijah Fast.” It breaks negative emotional feelings and habits. When Jezebel sent word that she wanted to kill Elijah . . . he became so distraught that he was an emotional wreck(1 Kings 19:4). He was depressed . . . even suicidal. That’s when an angel came to Elijah and instructed him to journey back into the presence of God. The Bible says that Elijah fasted for 40 days and 40 nights as he returned to Horeb, the mountain of God. God delivered Elijah from feelings of suicide and fear. He gave Him hope, courage and direction. Whether you suffer from emotional bad habits, a negative self image, fear, insecurities, depression or some other emotional bondage, fasting will help open your heart and mind to hear the still, small voice of God.

Five: THE WIDOW’S FAST 
“The Widow’s Fast” is about meeting the humanitarian needs of other people while you are fasting. In 1 Kings 17:10-16, we read the vivid story about a woman with very little who helped the man of God, Elijah. It was all part of God’s plan. The widow made a choice to fast so that someone else could eat. The book of Isaiah puts it this way, “. . . is it not to share your bread with the hungry, And that you bring to your house the poor who are cast out . . .” (Isaiah 58:6-7). Today, you can meet the humanitarian needs of other people while you’re fasting by using the money you would normally feed yourself with to help a food bank, support world missions or give to some other ministry that is helping the needy. When you do that, it pleases God and He will meet your needs. In the story of the widow, God multiplied the meal in her barrel to last for THREE AND A HALF YEARS! 

Six: THE PAUL FAST 
Are you faced with a major life decision and don’t know what to do? Maybe you have a job opportunity . . . a broken relationship or an unfulfilled dream. God has provided a way you can discern His voice—“The Paul Fast.” Saul was going the wrong way in life. He was hunting down followers of Christ and persecuting them when the light of God’s truth knocked him off his path (Acts 9:3-6). Saul headed to Damascus and “was three days without sight, and neither ate nor drank” (Acts 9:9). Saul didn’t know what to do. But he fasted for God’s divine direction. Then God sent the disciple Ananias to Saul with guidance (Acts 9:17). Through this process Saul became Paul, one of God’s chosen disciples. Through his fast, Paul got the direction he needed and so can you. 

Seven: THE DANIEL FAST 
When we look at “The Daniel Fast,” this fast is a partial and a prolonged fast that yields health and healing. Found in Daniel, chapter 10, the Daniel Fast is a fast from meats, sweets, breads and any drink but water for 21 days (Daniel 10:2-3). Daniel and three others refused to eat the king’s meat and they “appeared better and fatter in flesh than all the young men who ate the portion of the king’s delicacies” (Daniel 1:15). Daniel and his men were healthier! 

Eight: THE JOHN THE BAPTIST FAS
John and his disciples fasted often, according to Matthew 9. He was on the Nazarite diet, which fasted alcohol all the time. He ate little more than locusts and wild honey (Matthew 3:1-4). Because of John the Baptist’s constant fasting, I believe he had a greater testimony and influence on the lives of people in his generation than any other man (Matthew 11:1), (John 1:6-7). 

Nine: THE ESTHER FAST 
“The Esther Fast” is the fast for “protection against danger.” We live in a world full of predators, disasters and evil. But don’t live in fear. God has provided the blessing of protection. Esther was in a very dangerous position. Her uncle Mordecai discovered a plot by Haman, one of the king’s advisors, to destroy her family. When he asked for Esther’s help, she knew it was very dangerous to approach the king without being called for. She could lose her life. So Esther declared a three-day fast for God’s protection (Esther 4:16). Haman wanted to hang Mordecai on the gallows he was building in his courtyard, but God turned it around and the evil conspirator was hanged instead, on his own gallows! When you fast and pray, God will extend His protection to you and your household. 


What GREATER Things Are You Believing God For In 2014?  

Friday, December 13, 2013

2013- The Year Of INCREASE- Is Your World Expanding Or Growing Smaller?

A few years ago I posted many of these thoughts on my blog and I wanted to repost some of them to help you answer the question, "are you increasing into the life that God has for you?"  The theme for our church in 2013 has been, "INCREASE." God wants to increase you in every area of your life. He has promises of provision for you! The reason that the Israelites wandered in the wilderness for 40 years was because they chose pettiness over God's provision. Nothing was good enough. The journey to their destiny didn't go as they had preferred. Their small minded & narrow thinking caused their worlds to shrink & their problems to expand.

My question for you is, "Is Your World Expanding or Growing Smaller? Are you INCREASING?"

The answer to that question can be found in this one word. Pettiness.  Many times we allow the expansive lives that God has for us to grow smaller because of a stingy & self-centered mindset. We often allow our preferences to rule our hearts. According to freedictionary.com, Pettiness is defined as:

1. Of small importance; trivial: a petty grievance.
2. Marked by narrowness of mind, ideas, or views.
3. Marked by meanness or lack of generosity, especially in trifling matters.
4. Secondary in importance or rank; subordinate.


Pettiness is really smallness. Petty people choose to be small-minded, narrow & self-centered. Their lives are marked by negativity & lack. Pettiness produces fights, arguments. Pettiness demands it's own preferences over the needs of others. Petty people spend lots of time in other people's lives because they are trying to avoid dealing with their own issues. The root of pettiness is negativity & is rooted in our sinful nature. 

So how do you overcome pettiness? Make the decision to no longer focus on your preferences, instead, focus on the good of others. Look at the big picture & refuse to make mountains out of mole hills. Determine to live a large, expansive & generous life today! Don't become stingy with your life by allowing pettiness to become the rule of the day. Don't allow the unimportant to rule the important. Determine to live a large & generous life by being generous with your words, your time, your talent & your treasure!

Remember, "The world of the generous gets larger and larger; the world of the stingy gets smaller and smaller. The one who blesses others is abundantly blessed; those who help others are helped.” Proverbs 11:24 (Msg)

Monday, December 2, 2013

Join The Insta-Christmas Challenge This Month!


Insta-Christmas Challenge! As we near Christmas, let’s take time to enjoy the journey that God has given us. We invite you to join our 25-day photo challenge! Post a picture on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook -- using the #instachristmas2013 hashtag --  for each day of the month, guided by the prompts below. Every Sunday will be “Selfie Sunday.” Look for cardboard cut-outs in the lobby for you at each campus to take pictures with, then post online. We’ll use the  #instachristmas2013 hashtag to find your pictures so we can use them in multi-media collages throughout the month.

This is a creative way to invite friends to one of our service this Christmas!  And, it's a fun way to become eligible for our weekly prize giveaways!



WE'RE COUNTING DOWN TO CHRISTMAS WITH DAILY DEVOTIONALS
Sign-up for the Joy! To Your World!  Bible Reading Plan at www.youversion.com.

Sunday, December 1st: Elf (Selfie Sunday)
--Luke 1:1-7 / James 5:16 / Hebrews 10:35-39
Monday, December 2nd: Childhood Christmas Picture
--Luke 1:8-23 / Matthew 7:7-11
Tuesday, December 3rd:  In Walmart
--Luke 1:24-25 / Isaiah 40:28-31
Wednesday, December 4th:  Gratefulness
--Isaiah 53
Thursday, December 5th:  Cozy
--Luke 1:26-29 / Isaiah 9:2-7
Friday, December 6th:  Food
--Luke 1:29-35 / Psalm 17
Saturday, December 7th:  Lights
--Luke 1:36-38 / Genesis 18:10-14

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Church Leaders- Join Me For The Momentum Round Table With Hillsong Church's Mark Hopkins!


I wanted to take a moment to invite you to a special round table that I am hosting on November 18, 2013 with Pastor Mark Hopkins.  Mark comes to us with over 20 years of wisdom from serving on the Hillsong Church staff as the Executive Director of the renowned Hillsong International Leadership College.  Mark will be teaching on: How to Build a Culture of Growth in your Church: The Key to Sustained Ministry Momentum.  This intimate setting is open to the first 50 registrants and I anticipate this filling up quickly.  I believe that this will be well worth your time and will help you take your ministry to a whole NUTHA level! 

For those who are interested, Mark will be speaking at our FaithWorks evening college, an initiative of Hillsong International Leadership College, later that evening at 7p.m.  You are more than welcome to attend that evening, as well.  Don't hesitate to email stacey@freedomlife.tv for any other questions that you may have about this day. 

Look forward to seeing you! 

Momentum Roundtable - November 18, 2013
How To Keep Your Church Moving Forward
Cost:  $25.00


LOCATION:
Angela's Cafe'
835 Houston Run Drive
Gap, PA 17527
(717) 442-1500

SCHEDULE:
8:30-9:15AM: Check In
9:15-10:30AM: Session #1 - Mark Hopkins
10:30-10:45AM: Break
10:45-12:00PM: Session #2 - Mark Hopkins
12:00-12:30PM: Lunch
12:30-1:15PM: Q & A with Mark Hopkins

MARK HOPKINS BIO:


Mark Hopkins is the Executive Vice President of Hillsong International Leadership College which incorporates two Sydney campuses, both evening and day classes and extension colleges around the world. Mark's vitality & zeal for life is reflected in his preaching, teaching & leadership style. Mark has over 25 years experience in leadership and ministry, serving as a Pastor at Hillsong Church for 20 of those years. Mark’s desire in life is to see young men and women of God realise their God-given potential and to see them make a difference in this world for Jesus Christ. Mark resides in Sydney with wife Sandy, and their 2 sons, Justin & Kalib.

Monday, September 23, 2013

My Back Story- Part 3- How To Fulfill God's Assignment For Your Life

My Back Story-  Part 3-  How To Fulfill God’s Assignment For Your Life

Theme Verse- “No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead,14 I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.”  Philippians 3:13-14 (NLT)

What Is Your Assignment?  Your Assignment Is The Unique Calling That God Has For Your Life.  Your Assignment Is The Problem God Has Designed You To Solve For Others.  

Four Things You Must Do To Fulfill God’s Assignment For Your Life

1.  Listen To God’s Voice.  
“Now there was a certain disciple at Damascus named Ananias; and to him the Lord said in a vision, “Ananias.” And he said, “Here I am, Lord.” 11 So the Lord said to him, “Arise and go to the street called Straight, and inquire at the house of Judas for one called Saul of Tarsus, for behold, he is praying.” Acts 9:10-11 (NKJV)

“So Eli told Samuel, “Go and lie down, and if he calls you, say, ‘Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.’”  1 Samuel 3:9 (NIV)

Key Thought-  The Voice That You Listen To Will Determine The Future That You Create.

2.  Choose Obedience Over Understanding
“But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel... 17 And Ananias went his way ... .” Acts 9:16-17 (NKJV)

God doesn’t owe you an explanation or reason for everything he asks you to do. Understanding can wait, but obedience can’t. Instant obedience will teach you more about God than a lifetime of Bible discussions. In fact, you will never understand some commands until you obey them first. Obedience unlocks understanding. @RickWarren

"... (God) your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven."  Matthew 6:10 NIV

3.  Do What Is Possible So That God Can Do What Is Impossible
“And Ananias went his way and entered the house; and laying his hands on him he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you came, has sent me that you may receive your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.18 Immediately there fell from his eyes something like scales, and he received his sight at once; and he arose and was baptized.”  Acts 9:17-18 (NKJV)

Key Thought-  God’s Instruction may be illogical but it will always be possible. God will never ask you to do what you cannot, but He will always ask you to do what you can.

4. Trust God With the Results.  
“Then Saul spent some days with the disciples at Damascus. 20 Immediately he preached the Christ in the synagogues, that He is the Son of God. 21 Then all who heard were amazed, and ... Saul increased all the more in strength, and confounded the Jews who dwelt in Damascus, proving that this Jesus is the Christ.”  Acts 9:19-22 (NKJV) *see also Psalm 127:1, Hebrews 11:6

"Now when David had served God's purpose in his own generation, he fell asleep... .” Acts 13:36 (NASB)

My Back Story, Part 2 - The Power Of A God Encounter

My Back Story-  Part 2-  The Power Of A God Encounter

Theme Verse- “No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead,14 I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.”  Philippians 3:13-14 (NLT)

Encounter-  means to collide with the unexpected.

1.   A God Encounter Positions You To Have A Revelation Of Who He Is.
“And he said, “Who are You, Lord?” Then the Lord said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.  It is hard for you to kick against the goads.”  Acts 9:5 (NKJV)
Simon Peter answered, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God."  Matthew 16:16 (NASB)
“And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.”  Hebrews 11:6  *see also Matthew 7:7, Psalm 46:1, Romans 10:13 

2.   A God Encounter Empowers You To Move Past Your Rebellion Into Obedience.  
“So he, trembling and astonished, said, “Lord, what do You want me to do?”Then the Lord said to him, “Arise and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do... 8 Then Saul arose from the ground... .”  Acts 9:6,8 (NKJV)
“And without faith it is impossible to please God... he rewards those who earnestly seek him.”  Hebrews 11:6

“We are surrounded by a great cloud of people whose lives tell us what faith means. So let us run the race that is before us and never give up. We should remove from our lives anything that would get in the way and the sin that so easily holds us back. 2 Let us look only to Jesus, the One who began our faith and who makes it perfect...”  Hebrews 12:1-2 (NCV)
  • God Says To Move Past HEDONISM- Lust Of The Flesh 
  • God Says To Move Past MATERIALISM- Lust Of The Eyes 
  • God Says To Move Past INDIVIDUALISM- Pride of Life 
“Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. 17 And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.” 1 John 2:15-17 NKJV  (*see Luke 4:1-13)

3.  A God Encounter Equips You To Live The Life That He Has Called You To!
"And Ananias went his way and entered the house; and laying his hands on him he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you came, has sent me that you may receive your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” 18 Immediately there fell from his eyes something like scales, and he received his sight at once; and he arose and was baptized.”  Acts 9:17 (NKJV)

“Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.” (NIV) Psalm 34:8 *see also 1 Corinthians 6:9-11, Luke 17:32-33,  Jeremiah 29:11

The devil’s temptation cannot succeed against you when you are conscious of God's love for you. @JosephPrince

My Back Story- Week 1- How To Break Your Confidence Crisis

My Back Story-  Part 1
“So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.”  Hebrews 10:35
Confidence maintained in your mind, produces rich rewards in your life. @KevinGerald

Key Thought- Life Is Better When Confidence Is Bigger

“Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.”  Hebrews 11:1-2 (NLT)

Faith is an action, based on a belief, supported by confidence 
Confidence is trust, certainty & boldness in a person or thing. 

“The Lord is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear?  The Lord is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid?  When the wicked advance against me to devour me, it is my enemies and my foes who will stumble and fall.  Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then I will be confident.” Psalm 27:1-3 (NIV)

When You Are In A Confidence Crisis, You Will Feel:
  • Inadequate  --  Inferior  --  Insecure
  • eg. Moses (Exodus 3:11-14)
When You Are In A Confidence Crisis, You Will Only See:
  • Lack  --  Negativity  --  Impossibility
  • eg. Moses (Exodus 14:1-12)
3 Thoughts That Will Help You Break Your Confidence Crisis

1.  When You Know God Better, Your Confidence Will Be Bigger.
“God said to Moses, “I am who I am. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I am has sent me to you.’” Exodus 3:14 (NIV)

2.  When You Know God’s Promises, Your Confidence Will Grow Stronger
“And God said, “I will be with you. And this will be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will worship God on this mountain.” Exodus 3:12 (NIV)

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”  Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)

“No weapon formed against you shall prosper, And every tongue which rises against you in judgment You shall condemn.  This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, And their righteousness is from Me,” Says the Lord.” Isaiah 54:17 (NKJV)

3.  When You Choose A Confident Heart, Your Life Will Be Better
“Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.”  Exodus 14:13-14 (NIV)
“Then the Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelites to move on. 16 Raise your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea to divide the water so that the Israelites can go through the sea on dry ground. 21 Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea...The waters were divided, 22 and the Israelites went through the sea on dry ground... .”  Exodus 14:15-16; 21-22 (NIV)

“Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God and receive from him anything we ask, because we keep his commands and do what pleases him.”  1 John 3:21-22 (NIV)

“[ A song. A psalm of David. ] My heart is confident in you, O God; no wonder I can sing your praises with all my heart!”  Psalm 108:1 (NLT)  *see also Philippians 4:13, Psalm 112:7-8, Hebrews 4:16 

Friday, May 24, 2013

Start Your Summer Off Right With New Thru 30!



Summer is almost here and over the years I've watched countless people grow INDIFFERENT toward their faith during this season.  I want this summer to be DIFFERENT.  My ultimate desire is that people in the life of our church would prosper in every area of their lives!  For this to happen, God's Word must be THE priority.  Listening, learning, meditating, memorizing, confessing, declaring, living out... God's Word will bring success. (reference Psalm 1, Joshua 1)

So, we are going to do something.  It's something we SHOULD do. It's something we WANT to do. It's something we NEED to do. And the best part is… we’re doing it together.  Every year thousands of people promise themselves they’re going to do it this year. They’re going to read through the Bible. Or they’re going to read a little bit everyday. Or they’re just going to start fresh and do better this year. Most people don’t make it. Not even through the first month.  Maybe you are one of them! Pause.  Take a deep breath and think about the fact that 2013 is almost half over.  It's time to get moving.  It's time to begin. We’re going to start with something we can all handle.  This June we’re reading thru the New Testament. And we’re doing it in 30 days.  It’s called New Thru 30, a reading plan, a sermon series and an investment into our lives this summer.

Make the decision right now that your future is worth the investment.  The Bible is unlike any other book.  Hebrews 4:12 tells us, "For the word of God is alive and powerful...".  God's Word will keep you from sin (Psalm 119:11) and give wisdom for your future (Proverbs 2:6).  Satan (your adversary), the enemy of your soul, doesn't take the summer off from trying to destroy your life so it would be foolish to take the summer off from defending yourself against his well planned attacks.  The Apostle Paul reminds us to, "Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God." (Ephesians 6:17)  So here's the plan:


  •   Daily Reading Plan From YouVersion- click here
  •   Weekly Worship at one of our weekend experiences (Christiana 9 & 11/ Coatesville 10)
  •   Keep up when you are away via our weekly Podcast or online experience     (www.freedomlife.tv)
  •   Stay connected with your small group and go through our weekly Growth Track!
Are you ready to be new?  For 30 days in June we are going to grow in God's Word and in our relationship with Christ like never before!  Get ready this summer, we are going to a Whole Nutha Level! 




Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Decade Of Destiny, Year 2- Goals & Strategy



2013- DECADE OF DESTINY-  YEAR 2, INCREASE 
God has been gracious to our church as we have thrived by witnessing hundreds of people make decisions to follow Jesus, dozens more be baptized and powerful ministry occur in environments geared toward children, youth, young adults, married couples and others! 2012 marked the beginning of a 10 year vision for our church called, "Decade Of Destiny."  Year 2 begins this year and we are prophesying a year of INCREASE over our church family.  John the Baptist said this in John 3:30, "He must increase, but I must decrease.” (NASB)  Our desire is to decrease in the areas of our lives that are not a part of God's plan and to increase in those that are.  The Bible says, “... Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man.”  Luke 2:52 (ESV)  That is our prayer for this year and these are our goals.  To read more about our Decade of Destiny goals, click here.

2013  GOALS AND STRATEGY

1.  We will establish a new small group and discipleship strategy.  This will enable us to  more effectively build community within our church family.  We will utilize 2 forty day campaigns in the first half of this year to begin.  Our goal is to have 40 different groups meeting in the life of our church.  Upcoming 40 day campaigns include:  The Bible Challenge (Feb. 3 - Mar. 10), What On Earth Am I Here For? (Purpose Driven Life, Apr. 7 - May 12)
During the summer of 2013 we will be training our core leadership and small group host/leaders in our new discipleship process to help people move forward in their faith through one on one relationships.
2.  Numerical- Break through 1,000 in consistent weekend attendance as people get planted in God's House so they can flourish in life.
3.  Salvation- Our goal is to see 1,000 people take their next steps in following Jesus this year in our community and all over the world!
4.  Church Planting/Missions-  We will partner with other organizations to plant 10 churches in the Dominican Republic, Cuba and here at home.  We also support missions work in Haiti, Honduras, India, and other parts of the world.  When you give towards our goal of $50,000 for missions, you are helping us accomplish this goal.
5.  We will continue to develop our community care / outreach strategy.  We currently give financially to various organizations, such as the Parkesburg Point, and offer a food bank that feeds up to 50 families each month.   We will begin new initiatives to better serve our community and share the gospel message to each person within our reach.
5.  Financial-  $1,250,000 (including Decade Of Destiny)  Through the sacrifice and dedication of God's people we will supply the vision that God has given us for this year.
6.  Expansion Fund Goals: $250,000---$150,000 towards the purchase of our new property that will be the site of our new strategic location for the future of Freedom Life! $100,000 will go towards establishing our new location in Coatesville and preparing for our next site in 2014.  This will enable us to reach into surrounding communities with our message of hope in Jesus. Commitment Sunday will be on January 27, 2013!
7.  We will increase our leaderships team capacity to multiply and grow with the vision.  To do this we will continue to offer FaithWorks Hillsong Extension College (www.FaithWorksCollege.tv)  on Monday evenings for enrolled students. Growth Track classes will be available to every person in the church to help them move from an attender to contributor.  Growth Track will meet weekly at both locations.  We will also have quarterly leadership summits for all of our volunteers and quarterly gatherings for all of our team leaders that will empower their leadership along with one on one mentoring.
9.  We will invest into marketing and promotion to enable us to grow to the next level.  For years we have heard people say, "I didn't know this place existed or I would have been here sooner!"  We want to make it hard for people to go to hell in our community so we will be exploring new ways to reach more people through television, media, mailers, social media and so on.
10.  We will continue to focus on special services / events / conferences that build peoples lives.  They include:
-Marriage Retreat, Women's Conference, Men's Conference
-1st Wednesday Celebrations that combine all campuses to celebrate communion and be inspired by guest speakers.
-Relevant Biblical series to help you grow such as:  The Bible Challenge (Feb 3- Mar 10), There's An App For That! (Mar 10-24) What On Earth Am I Here For? (Apr 7- May 12), Solomon Says (July), My Back Story (September), Follow (Oct / Nov)