Open post

Peace House 6 – Take Action

How can a home bring peace to a neighborhood? There is a peace, a healthy state that we can find in Jesus. We can be safe and sound, able to rest and function at full capacity, complete, with our guilt removed, and free to enjoy life. Our God wants us to receive it and share it with others. We should understand this, pray for it, and work toward such a peace in ourselves, in our homes, in our neighborhoods, and in our city. In this way we will pursue peaceful relationships inside our homes through forgiveness. Jesus motivates us to love neighbors by listening to them in an attempt to understand them and build relationships. This listening works best when we host people with food and offer to help them in what they’re doing. From this context we may create new personal relationships and repair broken ones. We will work toward natural peace and we will bring the spiritual peace of our God. Our homes will be a gathering place for our church family to grow. We will pray for our neighbors and our neighborhood. Our homes will bring peace to the neighborhood.

“God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God.” – Jesus in Matthew 5:9

“Search for peace and work to maintain it.” Psalm 34:14

“the Kingdom of God…is a life of righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit.” Romans 14:17

“Work for the peace of the city…pray to the Lord for it, for its welfare will determine your welfare.” v 7 Jeremiah 29:5-14

Take Action – Follow God in His Redemptive Work

“Father to the fatherless, defender, God places the lonely in families,” Psalm 68:3-6

“You cannot live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you.” – Coach John Wooden They Call Me Coach by John Wooden & Jack Tobin

We must become willing to serve people, not for our own benefit, but for their benefit.

In writing about William Wilberforce who worked to end slavery in England Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr wrote, “One of the best ways to face this problem of self-centeredness is to discover some cause and some purpose, some loyalty outside of yourself and give yourself to that…you are then able to live because you have given your life to something that is meaningful…you rise above this self-absorption. We see that biography is a running commentary of this. We see Wilberforce. We see him somehow satisfying his desire, absorbing his life in the slave trade and those who are victims of the slave trade.” – Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr The Papers of Martin Luther King Jr: Symbol of the Movement

We must live for a purpose greater than our own desires.

After the assassination of Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr, Mr. Rogers helped families learn that “there is just so much a child can take without it being overwhelming to him”. He trained them to listen to children, watch them play, observe how they are doing, and include them in the family’s particular “ways of coping with the problems that present themselves anytime but particularly now in this very difficult time for our nation.” After being concerned about how the TV show The Hulk would teach children to process their own anger he guided the show’s stars in communicating with children that, “it’s okay to be angry, and it’s okay to let it out as long as we don’t hurt anybody and as long as we don’t hurt ourselves.” Mr. Rogers helped teach self-control. He said, “The good feeling of self-control is yet another facet of self-esteem. It feels really good when we can stop before doing something we shouldn’t do.”

In our neighborhoods there are families who need this sort of help.

Mr. Rogers wrote: “I sought out stories of other people who were ‘poor in spirit’, and I felt for them. I started to look behind the things that people did and said; and little by little, concluded that Saint Exupery was absolutely right; ‘What is essential is invisible to the eye.’ So, after a lot of sadness, I began a lifelong search for what is essential, what it is about my neighbor that doesn’t meet the eye.” Mr. Rogers Peaceful Neighbor by Michael Long

We must be listening, learning, and looking for a way to be helpful.

“The kind of peace shalom represents is active and engaged…Shalom is communal, holistic, and tangible. There is no private or partial shalom. The whole community must have shalom or no one has shalom…Shalom is not for the many, while a few suffer; nor is it for the few while many suffer.” – Randy Woodley Shalom and the Community of Creation

God’s peace is unique from your idea of peace.

“The church has the power to bring healing in a racially fragmented society. That power is not found in an emphasis on strength but in suffering and weakness. The difficult topic of racial reconciliation requires the intersection of celebration and suffering. The theology of celebration will always be more attractive than the theology of suffering. But if lament were offered to a suffering world, the hope that is woven into lament offers the possibility of genuine reconciliation.” – Soong-Chan Rah Prophetic Lament

God’s redemptive work will lead us away from self-centeredness and toward compassionate empathy in action.

“Love God with all you’ve got, and love your neighbor in the same way that you love yourself.” – Jesus in Matthew 22:37-40

In what way are they in need?

How does God want you to be a part of the solution?

“Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are His dear children. Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ.” Ephesians 5:1-2 “Carefully determine what pleases the Lord.” Ephesians 5:10 “Be careful how you live.” Ephesians 5:15

Careful consideration before taking action requires wisdom. “Wise people think before they act; fools don’t – and even brag about their foolishness.” Proverbs 13:16

What do I see that doesn’t look like a God kind of peace?

How can the situation be brought into good health?

Is God asking me to get involved?

Do I understand the distinction between my opinion and what good health looks like from God’s perspective and their perspective?

4 areas of action: 1. Share 2. Give 3. Defend 4. Party            

Share Compassion – come alongside, share the emotion, share the load (love by listening with an intent to understand)

Give what may help them come to a state of healthy wellbeing. “Anything I can do to help?”

Defend someone who is being mistreated    ….ask questions “How do you know this to be true?” and confront the lie. Question stereotype statements.

Party Throw a party and invite a wide variety of people! Be friendly to everyone. Show love and respect.

“God, what’s the one thing that you want me to do this week?”

“Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” Romans 12:21

When you follow God into His redemptive work, you are aligning yourself with the heart of God, you are participating with the plan of God, you can know that you are not alone, you can know that God is the source, it’s not all up to you, and there will be peace in Jesus.

Open post

Peace House Part 5

How can a home bring peace to a neighborhood? Part 5. Build & Repair Bridges – help conflict resolution

How can a home bring peace to a neighborhood? There is a peace, a healthy state that we can find in Jesus. We can be safe and sound, able to rest and function at full capacity, complete, with our guilt removed, and free to enjoy life. Our God wants us to receive it and share it with others. We should understand this, pray for it, and work toward such a peace in ourselves, in our homes, in our neighborhoods, and in our city. In this way we will pursue peaceful relationships inside our homes through forgiveness. Jesus motivates us to love neighbors by listening to them in an attempt to understand them and build relationships. This listening works best when we host people with food and offer to help them in what they’re doing. From this context we may create new personal relationships and repair broken ones. We will work toward natural peace and we will bring the spiritual peace of our God. Our homes will bring peace to the neighborhood.

  1. It’s a God idea.
  2. Peace inside the house.
  3. Build relationships, love by listening.
  4. Help & Hospitality
  5. Build Bridges & Repair Bridges

“God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God.” – Jesus in Matthew 5:9

“Peacemakers, plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of righteousness.” James 3:18

“Search for peace and work to maintain it.” Psalm 34:14

“Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.” Romans 12:18

“Live in harmony and peace. Then the God of love and peace will be with you.” 2 Corinthians 13:11

“The Kingdom of God…is a life of righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit.” Romans 14:17

“Work for the peace of the city…pray to the Lord for it, for its welfare will determine your welfare.” v 7 Jeremiah 29:5-14

“Joy fills hearts that are planning peace!” Proverbs 12:20

“Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.”

“Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts.”

“For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful.”

Colossians 3:12-15

Jesus talks about conflict resolution and peacemaking in Matthew 18:15-35.

Essential Ingredients:

Source – What is the disagreement or damage?

Active Listening

Describe the Situation – Healthy Communication Practices

Express your Feelings – Managing Emotions (appropriate/inappropriate)

Specify what you Want Done – Resolution is always the goal.

Empathy – Understanding Others

Open post

Peace House Part 4

How can a home bring peace to a neighborhood? To date, we have seen that this is a God idea for us to care about this, pray for it, and work toward it. We find peace in our homes, by forgiving each other. From there we may build relationships in the neighborhood, with love by listening. Now we look at the essential ingredients of help and hospitality.

“Always be eager to practice hospitality.” Romans 12:6-13

“Don’t forget to show hospitality to strangers, for some who have done this have entertained angels without realizing it!” Hebrews 13:2

Hospitality – bringing someone who was “far” to be “near”, hosting someone in your home so that you may cause one who had been a stranger to you, to become a friend. (the word includes “stranger – friend”).

“Cheerfully share your home with those who need a meal or a place to stay. God has given each of you a gift from His great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another.” 1 Peter 4:9-10

“Cheerfully” – our attitude is important.

We must receiving healing from past rejections. We must not rely on past achievements.

How?  1. Recipes 2. People List 3. Schedule It 4. Start Simple 5. Pray

Reminder: “love God with all, love your neighbor as yourself,” Good Neighbor – compassion, courage, creativity, commitment, cash & credit

1 Corinthians 12:28 “helps” means to take up a task with.

See a need, meet it, look for who is meeting it and partner with them.

This can be done by shoveling snow, garbage clean up, graffiti cleaning, working on a car, plumbing, childcare, taking meals to a neighbor.

Choose to live life with a priority on being ready to help others. Budget your time, energy, and money so that you can walk slow enough to see what’s going on and be available for conversations.

Open post

Peace House 3 – Building relationships

How can a home bring peace to a neighborhood?

Part 3. Building relationships in the neighborhood

“He made peace with everything in heaven and on earth by means of Christ’s blood on the cross. This includes you who were once far away from God. You were His enemies, separated from Him by your evil thoughts and actions. Yet now He has reconciled you to Himself through the death of Christ in His physical body. As a result, he has brought you into His presence, and you are holy and blameless as you stand before Him without a single fault.” Colossians 1:19-22

“For Christ Himself has brought peace to us. He united Jews and Gentiles into one people when, in His own body on the cross, He broke down the wall of hostility that separated us. He did this by ending the system of law with its commandments and regulations. He made peace between Jews and Gentiles by creating in Himself one new people from the two groups. Together as one body, Christ reconciled both groups to God by means of His death on the cross, and our hostility toward each other was put to death. He brought this Good News of peace to you Gentiles who were far away from Him, and peace to the Jews who were near.” Ephesians 2:14-17

There should be no barrier to great for us to break through so that we may bring peace. Not race, gender, age, etc.

We are all created equal, in God’s image, and our Creator wants us to love each other in this way. It is my mission. It is your mission. It is our mission as a church family.

In this room, we may feel safe with each other and this is good. It makes it easier for us to build relationships with each other. God’s heart is leading us to ask, “What happens when we go home?”

“I try to find common ground with everyone, doing everything I can to save some. I do everything to spread the Good News and share in its blessings.” 1 Corinthians 9:22-23

We must have a deep commitment to listening even when it’s hard. Listening with an intent to understand. What is the question underneath their question? What have they experienced? Where are they hurting?

Love by listening, learning, praying for, being available to, enjoying life with, speaking encouragement to, and bringing into next steps in following Jesus.

Open post

Peace House 2 – Peace Inside the House

Peace House – How can a home bring peace to a neighborhood?

Peace – a state of being in good health: able to function at full capacity, able to rest, and free from conflict or danger in every area of your life and in every relationship.

“Since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us.” Romans 5:1

“This righteousness will bring peace. Yes, it will bring quietness and confidence forever. My people will live in safety, quietly at home. They will be at rest.” Isaiah 32:17-18

Receiving forgiveness for yourself and giving forgiveness to others (those in your home).

Personal Salvation – receiving forgiveness and then “forgive us as we forgive,” Luke 11:4

“Since our friendship with God was restored by the death of His Son while we were still His enemies, we will certainly be saved by the life of His Son.” Romans 5:10

“Blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called sons of God.” Matthew 5:9

“If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.” Matthew 6:14-15

“If another believer sins against you, go privately and point out the offense. If the other person listens and confesses it, you have won the person back.” Matthew 18:15

Forgiveness – extending the grace & mercy of Father God, through Jesus, to those who have hurt us despite the fact that they don’t deserve it. Letting go of our right to punish that person.

God cares about what you have suffered. He will punish the guilty. He will forgive the repentant who rely on Jesus.

What promise are we making when we forgive?

“I will not:

– dwell on this incident.

– bring up this incident again and use it against you.

– talk to others about this incident.

– let this incident stand between us or hinder our personal relationship.”

“Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.” “Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.” “Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts.” “For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful.”  Colossians 3:12-15 

What do I do?

  1. Receive forgiveness by faith in Jesus
  2. Ask God for help
  3. Inventory
  4. Follow the directions
Open post

Peace House 1 – God’s Purpose

How can a home bring peace to a neighborhood?

The “Shalom” Peace of God is a significant theme of Scripture. In Judges chapter 6, Gideon comes away from an interaction with God saying “the Lord is peace”.

Jesus the “Messiah” sent for our salvation is about peace:

Messiah predicted as the “Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6

Zechariah’s prophecy that the Messiah would guide us into the “path of peace” in Luke 1:77-79

Angels announced Messiah’s birth with, “Glory to God. Peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.” Luke 2:14

God given purpose in a peaceful home:

“The Lord…blesses the home of the upright.” Proverbs 3:33

Mary and Martha’s home Luke 10:38-42

Jesus tells his followers to serve a town and minister from a home that has offered hospitality. Mark 6 Luke 9, 10

We see Jesus’ followers following His instructions “house to house,” in Acts 2.

God given purpose in peacemaking:

“the Kingdom of God…is a life of righteousness, peace, joy in the Holy Spirit.” Romans 14:17

“Search for peace and work to maintain it.” Psalm 34:14

“Work for the peace of the city…pray to the Lord for it, for its welfare will determine your welfare.” v 7 Jeremiah 29:5-14

Open post

Speak Life

It’s time for us to encourage people by talking about the hope in Jesus. God tells Ezekiel to speak life to people who are hopeless in Ezekiel 37:1-14 Jesus quotes Isaiah 61:1-2 when He reveals His identity as Messiah. In this, He speaks of freedom and comfort for the brokenhearted.  These words are directed at specific people. They help us see what God is like, what God cares about, how God thinks & acts.

Are you dead? Is there an area of your life that is dead? Is there a relationship in your life that is dead? Do you know someone who is dead? Someone who is hopeless?

It’s time for us to encourage people by talking about the hope in Jesus.

Please understand that we never recommend speaking to someone outside of the context of personal relationship where you are showing love by asking questions, listening, learning, and praying for this person on your own time.

It’s time to speak life. The promise of God within the context of a personal relationship with God, through Jesus Christ.

God loves you. I care about you.

There is nothing too hard for God.

Peace is possible.

Open post

The Way

Jesus is the way to a personal relationship with a loving God.

“There is forgiveness of sins for all who repent.” Luke 23:44-56, 24:1-47

The trial, crucifixion, death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus:

Matthew 27, 28  Mark 14, 15, 16  Luke 22, 23, 24  John 18, 19, 20, 21  Acts 1

“What makes God’s gift of grace so costly is that Jesus paid for it with His life. What makes it so powerful is that He came back from the dead, proving that He is the Son of God and that God accepted His sacrifice as payment for our sin.” – Steve Murrell

“God so loved,” John 3:16-17  “For everyone has sinned,” Romans 3:23-25

“So the promise is received by faith. It is given as a free gift.” Romans 4:16

“He was handed over to die because of our sins, and He was raised to life to make us right with God.” Romans 4:25

“…we will certainly be saved through the life of His Son.” Romans 5:6-11

Guilt Removed  Relationship Restored

Receive and Respond  Repent and Believe    Jesus is the way to a personal relationship with a loving God.

Live out your “Thank You!”  Live like Jesus share His love.

Open post

Jesus Our Passover Lamb

On this Palm Sunday, we remember why people were so happy to welcome Jesus into Jerusalem, in Mark 11. That is the way that Jesus changed our relationship with God. Jesus explained at this means, in Mark 14, at a Passover meal. Today we can receive His gift and respond by living out of our “Thank You”. In this way we can, “live like Jesus and share His love.”

Mark 11:1-10
Romans 6:23
Exodus 12:14
John 1:29
1 Peter 1:18-19
Hebrews 4:14-16
Hebrews 9:11-15

Open post

Good Neighbor 4

Jesus tells a story to explain how we should respond to God’s love, by showing love to others. This story gives a specific example of using cash and credit. You’ll never guess what this has to do with chocolate.

Luke 10:25-37
Matthew 25:14-30
Matthew 6:20-21
Ecclesiastes 5:10
Hebrews 13:5
1 Timothy 5:8
1 Timothy 6:10
Proverbs 3:9
Proverbs 13:11
Proverbs 21:20
Proverbs 22:1
Proverbs 27:23-27
1 Timothy 6:17-19
Hebrews 13:6-14

Posts navigation

1 2 3 4 29 30 31
Scroll to top