Hello, Faith Community! We have a new sermon series starting this Sunday! Find more info and read about what’s happening at FCC this week in today’s newsletter.
The Mind of Christ by Kevin Christopher
3 Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. 4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. 5 Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.
One day, not too long ago, my wife, Shannon, and I were driving around town with the boys bouncing around and bickering in the back when we overheard a conversation that I don’t think we will ever forget. This conversation came at the end of a week-long, near-continuous fight my oldest and my youngest sons.
But, in a moment of clarity my oldest son, Elijah, decided to step out in a beautiful moment of leadership and said to his brother, “Sebastian (who is the youngest), we have been fighting a lot lately, and I am wondering if you would be willing to work together and work through our problems. Would you be willing to do that with me?” With barely a pause Sebastian provided a matter of fact “…nnno.” Elijah was taken back. He wasn’t expecting Sebastian to say “no” to what he thought was such a reasonable request. Elijah asked, “Is there a reason why you won’t do that with me?” I looked up into my rear-view to see how he was going to answer. His head was back against the seat and his eyes went back and forth a few times. Then he sighed and said, “I just want to do fun things.”
Isn’t life just like that sometimes? Trying to get on the same page with others is really tough, and then you just wish you could do fun things. Seeking unity isn’t always one of the fun things in life. But it is possibly one of the most meaningful and important activities as we follow Jesus.
True unity only comes when we lay ourselves down to serve others and consider their interest above our own. But we all know this is easier said than done. Emptying ourselves like Jesus did is a difficult, costly, and high calling that very few of us pursue with any regularity. Self-sacrifice can be such an imposing and difficult proposition that we often say, “Forget it. It’s too complex. It’s too hard. It’s too costly.”
When we come face to face with a person or a situation that threatens our vital sense of who we are, what do we usually do? We get defensive. Put up boundaries. We draw hard lines. The thought of emptying ourselves for another person doesn’t even enter the grid at first. Why do our minds immediately self-protect? I think it is because we know that others are like us. We know they are NOT going to put our interest first.
We all too often disregard the image of God in one another. We speak poorly to one another, break promises, fail to respond or reciprocate love and affection toward one another. We ignore each other’s requests or forget each other’s priorities. We put burdensome responsibilities on others and make excuses for not upholding our own. Over the course of time, as enough of these interactions happen, we begin to wonder if any of us really have any value to anyone at all and start fending for our own self-interest.
But Jesus is different. Jesus, the one who made all things, preferred to give power away over taking power for himself. He considered the interest of others and obedience to his Father as more important than his own interests. Most of all, he knew who he was. He had confidence in the Father’s love for him and confidence that obedience to his Father would restore and do the most good for others.
What if we could walk into our difficult relationships with a mind to love and restore others, instead of trying to protect those things that are already secured by Jesus’ death and resurrection, safe in the Father’s care?
Imagine yourself walking into that interaction knowing that the most important and vital parts of your identity are secured and held by the heavenly Father. They cannot be taken away. In Christ you are loved, worthy of dignity and honor, made in the image of God. You don’t have to fight anymore, you are free to love others with abandon.
God is on your side. If he is for you, no one can be against you or ultimately harm you (Rom. 8:31). If you walk into your next disagreement with this mind-set (the Mind of Christ), it will free you up to lay your interests down because you have nothing to lose. The Father already has them secured. The gospel gives us courage to face into the most difficult part of living the Christian life—sacrificing ourselves for the good of others.
Following Christ is not for the faint of heart, and it is indeed costly. But in the end, bringing love, dignity, and honor to others is well worth the cost. This is how Jesus lived, and he calls us to do the same. True love and glory comes when we lay down our rights for the good of others.
This Sunday, we will begin a summer series in the book of Psalms. If you have nine minutes, you can click on this link to get a solid and fun overview of the entire book. This will serve you well as you encounter the individual Psalms we will be teaching from during this series. Please pray about who you can invite to this series. Here’s a link you can send through text or email to invite a friend to come on Sunday: https://www.fcchudson.com/sermon-series/real-you-real-god
Loving caregivers are needed on Sunday mornings this summer in the Early Childhood Ministry area. If you can help, especially for June 30, please contact Karen Garden at 715-220-2507 as soon as possible. Thank you!
As an extension of FCC’s Care Ministry, FCC is forming a team of men and women, who can visit people in our FCC family. Would you like to serve by visiting people who may be sick, in the hospital or unable to leave their homes? This involves:
For more information, please call or text Marty Best at 651-592-6504.
Did you know you can find this newsletter on the app? Just open up the app, click on “News, Blog + Bulletin,” then click on “TheUpDate Weekly Newsletter.” You can catch up on the what’s happening at FCC any time on the app!
Matt. 18:17 (Church Life)
If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.
SUMMER KIDS LIFESHAPING in a large group format takes place at 9 and 11 am on Sundays for grades K-5. Learn more at fcchudson.com or the FaithBase app.
INTERESTED IN BECOMING A COVENANT MEMBER OF FCC? Check out the membership class that takes place on June 6 and 13. Get all the details and register at fcchudson.com or the FaithBase app.
FAITHWORKS is just a few weeks away, June 17-21. Want to get involved? Find more info, get registered to work, or help fund FaithWorks at fcchudson.com or the FaithBase app.
PASTOR TIM PORTER’S SABBATICAL
Pastor Tim Porter is currently on sabbatical until August 25 to rest, refresh, recharge and learn. Please pray for him and his family. Thank you!
LEARN ABOUT FCC events and registrations at fcchudson.com or the app. Search for “Faith Community Church Hudson” on the App Store or Google play to download the app.
PRAYER REQUESTS + CARE NEEDS are now posted on the Prayer + Care wall on the app. You can also sign up on the app under “Emails + Registrations,” if you would like to receive an email when new prayer requests and care needs are posted.
Wondering if something at FCC is canceled? Check fcchudson.com or the app.