Parent’s Progress 2.21.13

Parenting. It isn’t easy. And it’s not a part time job. Here at WLFMC, we are committed to helping equip parents. With that in mind, we will be posting a weekly series here on our blog, where we will link to great articles and helpful ideas and tips for a more Christ-focused parenting style. It is our hope that these tools will lead to progress in your family.

Check out what we have this week.


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Priorities and Goals

As many organizations do, we have a once-a-year meeting of the stakeholders in our community. We discuss business, yes, but we also discuss vision. Here are the big priorities and goals that came out of our meeting last month. These represent how we purpose to move forward. It is also  pretty good list of things to pray for us.


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Distinctives

Free Methodist, For Jesus’ Sake

By Howard A. Snyder

“To maintain the Bible standard of Christianity, and to preach the Gospel to the poor.”

The words are so simple we can miss their punch. These are the words of B.T. Roberts and the first Free Methodists as they founded the new denomination in 1860.

Free Methodists embrace “the Bible standard of Christianity.” We know God has once for all shown the way of salvation, revealed in Scripture. The gospel centers in Jesus Christ’s gift of abundant life (John 10:10) to all who believe and follow Him.

Free Methodists emphasize Jesus’ commission: “Preach the gospel to the poor.” Roberts said the church should do what Jesus did: Take the gospel to people who are hurting and oppressed; people with no hope. The gospel is for all, but like Jesus we focus our resources and compassion especially on the poor and oppressed.


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Freedom Sunday

Yesterday we joined many churches around the world in celebrating Freedom Sunday. It is not about a Sunday. It is about God’s movement to end modern-day slavery, create new futures and help others live in freedom.

We believe that nobody should be for sale. Yesterday’s service was just a beginning to recognize the many ways we can be involved.


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The Power of Contentment

David Capes

By David Capes
January 24, 2013

I don’t want to rain on anybody’s parade, but I’m afraid I’m about to.  I recall a professor of mine saying repeatedly, “I don’t want to piously believe something that is not true.”  I wonder how much of what we think or believe is just not true, regardless of how passionately we believe it.  Case in point: Philippians 4:13.  Like many of you I memorized it from the King James Version: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

For many people Philippians 4:13 has been one of their favorite verses from the Bible.  They quote it consistently as they are facing some obstacle. Some take it almost as proof of nearly super-hero status.  I CAN DO ALL THINGS.

Faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, able to leap tall buildings with a single bound.  Who disguised as mild-manner Joe Christian fights the unending battle for truth, social justice, and the Christian way.  .  . (with apologies to Superman)

The problem is this. 


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The True Valentine Love

1 Corinthians 13

New International Version (NIV)

13 If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues,they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. 12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.

13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.



You Are Dust…

By David Capes

Easter comes early this year: March 31, 2013.  A long time ago it was decided to set the date of Easter as the first Sunday following the first full moon after the vernal equinox (or the first day of spring).  The decision was a long and complicated one, but a key factor was this: since Jesus rose from the dead and appeared to his disciples on a Sunday, then Easter should be on a Sunday.  Other proposals had it so Easter could fall on any day of the week.  The church, in its wisdom, decided instead to have Easter fall every year on Sunday.  In a real sense, every Sunday is a little Easter.

 

But Easter is such a profound holy day on the church’s calendar that our spiritual ancestors decided to preface it with a season of preparation marked by prayer, fasting, and spiritual reflection.  So the season of Lent was created to make the transition from more ordinary time to the day of resurrection.


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Just Look Around

by Pastor Henry Church

We were sitting on a foam mattress on the floor with a small group of Moslem men, drinking tea out of small glasses.  About three families of Syrian refugees live together in one small apartment. As we visited, an older man looked me in the eye and said to me through my interpreter, “I have something to say to you!”  Wondering what was coming next, I said, “OK?”  The old man spoke, “In the Koran it tells us that Issa (Jesus) taught his followers to love their enemies and to help those who are in need.  You are doing what Issa said.  I want to thank you!”  I responded, “Thank YOU!  We really want to do what Issa said to do.”  We had a good visit, prayed for our new friends, and went on our way.


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This Pew Smells

I’m not the type to throw my children under the proverbial bus simply because they make great sermon illustrations.

Wait a minute…yes I am! So here we go again…

My children, in some areas, have joined a long list of people who have uttered the words, “But we’ve always done it that way!” Their specific dilemma was when their mother chose not to sit in the same pew that we often frequent. She thought it was a minor decision, until she heard the great outcry that resembled a great heresy whispered in the Holy of Holies.


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Celebration: Spiritual Disciplines for Youthworkers

This is part 12 in a series on the Celebration of Discipline.

by Kelly Soifer

As I write this I am preparing to head out to the birthday celebration of my favorite one year old in the world, Bryn, who is the daughter of dear friends of mine. She was born on 11/1/11, and we all giggle at that because she is definitely number one in our hearts.

At the same time, I know I will sit back at some point during the day and chuckle at how many adults are there, celebrating an event that Bryn will most certainly not remember! In some ways it is tempting to ask, “What is even the point of having a birthday party for a one year old?!”

I can tell you the answer: Because everyone loves a party! Personally, I can never have enough cupcakes. How about you? We are wired to celebrate with those we love, whether it is a birthday, an anniversary, a graduation, and even a life well-lived as we grieve the loss of a loved one.

Even as I type the word “celebrate” I have many fun memories popping into my head:


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