“What did you learn today?”
I became very familiar with this question, my mom made an effort to ask it almost every day of my childhood. Maybe your mom had a similar habit. That simple question taught me that no matter how my day went or what happened, there was always something to be learned.
Life is full of learning. There’s formal learning: school, on the job training, internships. We can also learn in less formal environments such as sitting with a friend over coffee, hearing a fresh perspective on life.
The longer I go through life, the more I seek these opportunities to learn something new each day. We should approach our spiritual walk with the same eagerness.
Consider this verse:
Remember your leaders, who spoke the Word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith.Hebrews 13:7
With lifelong learning and the above verse in mind, Blueprint Church has embarked on the Planted Series. Over the next several months we have invited individuals and couples to come to share their experiences in church planting. Men and women have been planting churches since Jesus gave the Great Commission. We are blessed to know a lot of courageous men and women who have stepped out in faith and moved to new places for the purpose of planting churches. What could compel such a decision? The desire for more people to hear the Good News: Christ Jesus has come to the world to save!
So far, we have hosted Mike and Annie from Lincoln, NE and Rick and Neva from Stillwater, OK. What rich encouragement and fellowship these couples have provided for us! Thank you both!
Through the Planted Series we are excited to learn from those who have gone before us and to imitate the faith they’ve shown, here in Northwest Arkansas.
• Jesus Changes Lives •
For as long as I can remember, my self-worth was tied to my achievements. I wanted people to take note of me and of my accomplishments. I wanted them to praise me and affirm that I was doing well. Who I was rested in what other people thought about me, and what they said about my performance.
In high school, this meant sports, music, academics—essentially anything in which my performance could be measured. If I did poorly, my spirit was crushed. My identity was marked as “failure.” Even when I found success I was not satisfied. I may have been temporarily happy, but then I would tear myself down, always questioning what I could have done better. Either way, I was left feeling very dissatisfied. Would I ever be good enough? It didn’t seem like it.
I carried this same attitude into church with me on Sunday mornings. I thought that maybe I could impress God with my performance if I did enough things right, or at the very least that I would be good enough to stay out of hell.
Then I went off to college. I dove right into my major, English literature, and who I became those little comments left by Ph.D. holders in the margins of my latest paper. I stopped going to church. It seemed like God had a pretty high standard, one
that maybe I was incapable of meeting well, and I never did anything that I wasn’t good at. I put my Bible in the bottom drawer. If God was even real, He needed more manageable expectations. I told myself that I would rather be considered
intelligent in the academic community than stick to this notion of Jesus.
But, even though I was finding success in my studies, I was left with that same dissatisfaction. It nagged at me. I tried to ignore it, but I couldn’t shake it. It seemed like no matter how well I did, there was always going to be something more to achieve, that what I did could be better. With this pit in my stomach, I went for a cup of coffee. The barista who served me was really happy. I wanted to be that happy. Then, she opened her mouth and said something about Jesus. That was not the answer I was looking for, and I chose to keep searching for another remedy to my restlessness.
I ended up getting to know this barista, Diana, and she opened up a Bible to tell me about Jesus. She told me that all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God –Romans 3:23. No wonder I always felt like I was falling short. God had a standard and
I was falling short of it. There was no possible way for me to measure up, no amount of good I could achieve to earn my way to heaven or atone for the bad I had done.
Yet, God made a way for me. The wages of my sin is death, but the free gift of God
is eternal life through Christ Jesus -Romans 6:23. Jesus was the only person in the history of the world to be perfect. He took the punishment that I deserved and paid for my sin.
I had found an answer to that nagging question– Am I good enough yet? The answer was no; I am not, but Jesus is.
Jesus set me free from the endless chase for something better, from constant striving and achieving. My worth does not have to depend on my most recent success or failure. It is not dictated by others’ opinions of me. He has given me a hope that I never experienced in anyone or anything else; it is a hope that doesn’t fail.
A Word From The Pastors
We continue to pray faithfully for the following things and ask you to join us!
Pray faithfully with us:
- That God would provide jobs in Northwest Arkansas for church plant members.
- That God would give us a space to meet in on Sunday mornings.
- That God would help us to continue to live on a mission: connecting with and serving the people of Fayetteville through Christ’s love.
- That many would hear the Gospel, receive salvation, and be baptized.
To know that you also are trusting God and asking for His provision on our behalf is such an encouragement. Thank you for supporting us!
Building Lives Centered on the Gospel,
Alex & Cody