Dear Resurrection Family,
This week I’ve been pondering that part of the Lord’s Prayer in which we pray, “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.” “Forgiveness,” Paul Tillich once wrote, “is the divine answer to the question implied in our existence.” I’ve shared that quote many times as it points to our deep, existential need for this thing we ask for in the Lord’s Prayer.
We both ask for forgiveness, and we call ourselves to forgiveness when we pray the prayer Jesus taught us. We both need forgiveness, and we must extend forgiveness. If we don’t ask for and accept forgiveness, we will forever be alienated from God and others. And if we don’t extend forgiveness we will be a bitter and unhappy person.
This weekend’s message will focus on this line in the Lord’s Prayer; we’ll learn why some say trespasses, some debts, some sins. We’ll focus on the deeper significance of this line, and on how we receive forgiveness and how and why we must grant it. We all need this. Everyone you know needs this message.
Join us in worship as we devote this weekend to learn what Jesus teaches us about forgiveness.
I want to thank all of you who sponsored children through Compassion International last weekend! We quickly ran out of sponsorship packets and ultimately had over 200 children who were sponsored last weekend, adding to the 1,500 you already sponsor as a congregation. I’m so very proud of you, and grateful for the many ways you serve others.
These are 1,700 children (and many more through World Vision and our sponsorship of kids in Honduras) whose lives are affected by these programs.
This week we’ve held a series of three meetings with congregation members as a part of our 2030 Vision process. Thank you to the 500+ people who attended these fun and meaningful meetings.
We had over 700 (I think as many as 900) ideas that were submitted in our moonshot survey a few weeks ago – big ideas for how God might use our congregation to change lives, strengthen churches and transform the world. Dan Entwistle and Debi Nixon culled through these, categorizing them, then capturing those that came up most frequently. These 500+ people had an opportunity to discuss these ideas around tables, and to vote on six of the 25 ideas that were submitted as ones they were most passionate about.
Between now and next January, we’ll work to narrow this to three to five major initiatives that will be a part of our Vision 2030 plan. It is fun and energizing to dream together about God’s plans for our congregation. More to come.
One of the most rewarding experiences in life is to mentor someone else. If you are looking for a meaningful way of serving and making a difference I’d like you to consider being a confirmation mentor. Confirmation is kicking off soon and we are in need of adult mentors to walk alongside students on their faith journey.
Mentors don’t have to have all the answers, just a willing heart and a spirit to share with teenagers. All curriculum, materials, and training are provided, and you won’t be alone in a group… we’ll pair you up with other mentors too! You and your co-mentors will share a group of 10-15 guys or gals weekly for fantastic worship including music, speakers and small group time.
Currently, at Resurrection Leawood, to make the small groups actual small groups we are looking for 12 more adult male mentors and 6 female mentors. The sessions run on Sunday mornings in the student center from 10:40 am-12:15 pm. The Confirmation season starts with kickoff on September 30 and culminates with a special ceremony on March 3.
This is a remarkable opportunity for you to impact the future of our church. Click here to register, see dates and details and watch a cool video about what being a mentor is all about. Questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you've yet to get connected in a small group, class or study, I'd like to invite you to check out the line-up of classes and other opportunities to connect on Tuesday nights from 6:30 to 8:30 pm at the Resurrection Leawood Foundry.
See the full Grow Night lineup here. Childcare is offered.
Grow night includes a host of Disciple Bible Study classes (my favorite Bible study offering depth and substance - something like a seminary-level introductory class on the Bible and a chance to develop great friendships too). We have short term classes taught by master teachers like Jeff Kirby. We have classes on social justice and race. We have our introductory courses on the Christian life including the seven-week Meet Your Bible class and the three-week Embark course.
Our young adults in their 20’s and 30’s meet on Tuesday nights, and we have Women’s LIVE Bible Studies and even a women’s book club, as well as short-term classes for our Crossroads Ministry (for those 50 and up). Once a month we also offer Tuesday night serve opportunities.
By the way, on Tuesday nights the café will be open for you to grab a bite to eat before heading to class. I’ve had Chef Tony’s apple bacon fig flatbreads, the chicken pesto panini and several of the salads – they are awesome! We’ve had a huge increase in the number of people grabbing lunch at the café this fall. Tony’s doing a great job preparing delicious meals that are a bargain.
I’m excited about our upcoming Sacred Steps 5K Walk/Run on Saturday, September 22, at 8 am at Resurrection Leawood. Last year you provided clean drinking water to over 5,000 people in Malawi through the Sacred Steps 5K. Proceeds this year will also be used for water projects in Africa.
This event is a blast – great food, prizes, and great fellowship. Join LaVon and I and our family, along with hundreds of others. Thank you to our amazing sponsors who make this event possible. You can see all the sponsors, the course, last year’s times and sign up by clicking here. I’ve been training... not to run, but to power walk – I'm hoping to finish in under 36 minutes (the winner last year was a 36-year-old named Nate who finished in 16:32!).
Later this month Resurrection will host our 20th annual Leadership Institute: September 26-28. We’ll have over 2,000 pastors, staff and laity here from across the country, joining us to be inspired, encouraged and equipped with new ideas for ministry in their local churches.
I’d like to invite you, our Resurrection members, to join us. It is going to be AWESOME! We have amazing guest speakers, terrific workshops (including two workshops geared just for Resurrection members) and I’ll teach on Leadership Lessons from Simon Peter. I’m also sharing our best leadership lessons and ideas from Resurrection and interviewing Julian Zugazagoitia, the Director of the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art on leadership and the great work he has done at the Nelson. Julian is a friend of mine and a Kansas City treasure.
I sent an email this week to Resurrection members with special instructions for you to register – check your email inbox for this note, which includes a Resurrection member discount.
The Leadership Institute would not be possible without our amazing Resurrection volunteers. We still need more volunteers. This is a short-term volunteer opportunity that is really fun and exciting! No experience is necessary - it's great for new members, founding members and anywhere in between! All you need to bring is a smile! Click here to be a part of the Leadership Institute hospitality team.
Over the last several weeks, worship leaders and volunteers from each of our Resurrection locations gathered together at Resurrection Downtown to put together six original pieces of worship music. Check out the first of six music videos in this new collaborative project. These Living Room Sessions were born out of a desire to worship in community, write original music and it started in an actual living room. I hope you enjoy them!
I’d end with a reminder of the Lord’s Prayer 40-day challenge. I’ve invited you to pray the Lord’s Prayer every day for six weeks. If you haven’t yet prayed the Lord’s Prayer today, why not right now? If you don’t remember the words, they can be found below.
Resurrection, I love you and am so proud of the people you seek to be and the way you give of yourselves to serve Christ.
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name.
Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day, our daily bread.
Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us, not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For Thine is the Kingdom and the power and the glory, forever. Amen.
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