Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself.
At Blueprint Church we are always looking to Jesus. We want to know His example and His instruction to us. We want our lives to look like His, to reflect the respect we have for Him as Lord of all things, Creator of wisdom, the ultimate example of love.
Above are Jesus’ words to us, found in Matthew 22:37-39. He tells us to love each other so that is what we are trying to do! We seek to love one another in Blueprint Church. We seek to love the people we interact with daily. We, as a church, are also looking for opportunities to love our community.
This month alone we have participated in a number of service projects. We’ve found there are plenty of opportunities to provide clothing to those in need, and food to those without. It is gripping to put yourself in a place where you are staring straight at the obvious, basic needs of others and realizing you can help meet those needs, at least in that moment. We are able to provide because the Lord has first provided for us.
God has given us our daily and, even much more pressing: eternal needs. We want to be in a place, mentally and physically, where we can show those around us that their needs have also been claimed: God provided Jesus on the cross to die in place of our sins and clothe in righteousness any person willing to trust in God’s good help and power to conquer any and all darkness.
God does not discriminate! This provision is for any person that will accept it: Race does not matter. Gender does not matter. Socioeconomic status is irrelevant. Abilities or lack thereof? God doesn’t care! He loves us all. We are all in the same boat in God’s eyes: Sinful humans in need of a righteous Savior. His provision is glorious, without fault. Praise Him.
• Jesus Changes Lives •
For as long as I can remember, my family was at church every time the doors were open. I knew all the right answers, did my best to follow all the rules and made it my responsibility to enforce them. Even when I was failing, I tried to help others strive for perfection. This made me unfairly judgmental and critical of others. I relied on the rules to prove I was close to God in a logical and measurable way. However, I felt distant and unsatisfied. Despite doing all the right things, I still felt like I wasn’t good enough. I started to question what I knew and thought if I couldn’t make it on my own, why even bother?
Then, while I was in college, my parents got divorced. This reconfirmed my suspicions that “being a good person” wasn’t enough. If religion couldn’t save my family, then either it was worthless or my view of it was fundamentally flawed. During this time, someone shared Psalm 46 with me. It states that, “God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble. So we will not fear…” I decided that this was what I needed. I desperately needed someone to rescue me and provide peace and assurance that I couldn’t find anywhere else.
I realized that everything I tried to do to be a better person only backfired. The rules I clung to showed me how often I failed, the church events I attended left me feeling empty, and the good things I tried to redeem myself with left me over-committed and worn out. My focus was on my actions, instead of Jesus. All of the good deeds I did didn’t replace all of the bad things I did. They just made me a scorekeeper. Romans 5:8 says, “God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” God didn’t need me to prove myself. He saw that I couldn’t save myself no matter how hard I tried and provided a solution: Jesus.
I still tend to rely on the rules to prove my worth to both God and others. But I am constantly reminded that this pursuit gains me nothing. I broke the law, and the penalty was death. But God sent his own Son to die in my place because He loved me so much. This kind of sacrifice deserves love in return, not militant rule-following. Because of this generous and undeserved gift, Jesus either deserves all of me or none of me. There is no in-between.
Committing to Jesus, all in, does not guarantee life will be easy or simple. However, because of this decision, I no longer have to fear that I’m not good enough. I am loved, mistakes and all, and this motivates me to love others instead of being critical of them. How I treat others, where I find my value, and how I handle stress have all been radically changed because of Jesus.
A Word From The Pastors
As pastors, we really enjoy sending out these updates. It an easy opportunity for us to update you on our lives here. To know that monthly family and friends are connected to our work here via these updates and the Coffee Cup Initiative is super encouraging. We continue to pray for the things that we’ve mentioned before, found in the list below. We also have a specific update: one of our church plant members has a job interview this Tuesday. Pray for this now and on Tuesday with 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.
Building Lives Centered on the Gospel,
Cody & Alex