Happy Wednesday, FCC! Please pause and pray for the Refuge and AWANA meeting this evening!
...If one has a complaint against another,
forgiving each other;
as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.
As we are learning from Paul's letter to the Romans, we have been forgiven richly because of Jesus' life, death and resurrection. Jesus has paid our debt with his life and death. Because the foundation of our relationship with the Living God is grace and forgiveness, one of the chief virtues that is to mark our lives with one another is forgiving one another.
Until we see Jesus face to face, we will still sin against one another. As followers of Jesus, we seek to love each other so well that we don't sin, but regrettably, we will still sin against one another. So we must learn how to forgive as we have been forgiven.
Ken Sande, says that when we forgive another from the heart, we are making four promises to the offender. Over the next few weeks, I will be talking about each of the promises that we make in forgiveness. The first promise we make is: "I will not dwell on this incident." Here is where we apply the gospel to our hearts and minds and intentionally choose to not dwell on the sin that was committed against us.
As an introvert, I spend a lot of time in my internal world, and it is very easy for me to drift into rehearsing offenses of either sinful words said or painful deeds done. Thankfully, often the Spirit convicts and reminds me that I have forgiven these sins against me. I confess my sin in rehearsing the offense, and pray for the person whose sin I was just dwelling on, and then, willfully chose to see the person in a positive light, and stop thinking about the sin that I forgave.
This is the internal work of forgiveness, and for some offenses, it is easy to do. But for others, it is difficult to do because the consequences of the offense are so big and lasting, or the offender is so close. But, this is also where God's work can be experienced. By learning to not dwell on another's sin, we are becoming like God, who does not remember our sins. God does not dwell on our sins against him.
We are bringing our series on Romans to a close with only a few more sections remaining. This Sunday we will be looking at The Gospel and Ambition (Romans 15.14-33). Jesus saves us from God's wrath, and he saves us to a relationship with God. And the God who saves us is a missionary God—he has a mission and calls us into it. We know that we have encountered the Living God, when our faith can no longer be private, but it must be shared. Please pray for fruit!
One way we come alongside parents in the discipleship of their children is to present two-year-olds and second graders with Bibles. We will be presenting the Bibles in both services this Sunday, Oct. 15. The two-year-olds receive an illustrated copy of “The Jesus Storybook Bible: Every Story Whispers His Name” (Sally Lloyd Jones/Zondervan). This is a favorite of our family because it gives a solid overview of the Bible and shows how Jesus is the hero of every story in the Bible.
The second graders receive a copy of the “Following Jesus” Bible (ESV/Crossway), which includes many study resources. On Oct. 22, the second graders and their parents will attend a hands-on Family Take It Home Event, where Brigitte Feia, Director of Children’s Discipleship, will show them how to navigate their Bibles together.
Please see this note from FCC’s
Early Childhood and Care Ministry Director:
We have an abundance of precious little ones coming to the first service in the toddler nursery. MORE HELP IS NEEDED. If you or your family member love children and can commit to one service a month, I NEED YOU! Please contact me via text or call at: 715-220-2507.
BRATS, POLKA & PRETZELS!
October 29 marks the 500th anniversary of Reformation Sunday. On Oct 31, 1517, Martin Luther began a reformation of the church by nailing 95 theses to the Wittenberg Door. This event sparked a recovery of the gospel of grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. As we bring our Romans series (a sermon series on Living and Breathing the Gospel) to conclusion on Oct 29, it seemed fitting to take an opportunity to gather together and have some fun together, while also reminding ourselves of the gospel of God’s grace.
On Sunday, Oct. 29, Faith Community is hosting Reformapalooza, a family Reformation celebration, following the 11 a.m. service. Come enjoy this fun, festive, fall picnic!
With the Romans series, we have a schedule for memorizing key verses—together as a church—which are crucial for helping us preach the gospel to ourselves and encourage one another as we seek to live out the gospel in all of life. The verses all come from Romans, and correspond to the preaching schedule. Pick up a memory verse card this Sunday to help you memorize the verses each week:
5 May the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus, 6 that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. (Romans 15:5-6)
8 For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s. (Romans 14:8)