Tates Creek Christian Church

Updates and Insights from Tates Creek Christian Church

Archive for the month “February, 2015”

Sermon Outline, March 1, 2015, “Jesus is the Servant”

Jesus is the Servant

March 1, 2015

John 13:1-20

A Servant demonstrates Humility.

Humility thinks of others Before Self.

~ Philippians 2:2-4

Humility places others Above Self.

~ Romans 12:10

A Servant demonstrates Heart.

A Servant’s Heart serves Willingly.

~ Colossians 3:23; Ecclesiastes 9:10

A Servant’s Heart serves willingly to do Whatever.

~ Colossians 3:17

A Servant demonstrates Leadership.

Leadership takes the First Step.

~ Matthew 20:28

Leadership provides the Example, not the Exception.

~ Luke 12:48

Without Prayer?

As a self-test of sorts, I recently tried to go through an entire day without utilizing the privilege of prayer. Needless to say, it was harder than I thought it would be and by day’s end, found myself exhausted from trying to avoid praying, not to mention, painfully lonely. I discovered that prayer is as much second nature to me as breathing but unlike breathing, it is a gift that I never take for granted.

Growing up in a loving Christian minister’s home, I was virtually surrounded by positive examples of what it means to lead a productive and healthy prayer life and how vital it is to the Christian walk. As I left the protective cocoon of my younger days and began to face the realities of life, my prayer life also transitioned from the immature “I want” and “I need” to prayers of thankfulness and praise to the Lord who continually sustains through all trials. Entering the senior phase of my life, I’ve discovered that just as we never cease to grow in our faith, our view of prayer also matures. I’ve been quite humbled by this revelation that has blessed me with a contentment and peace I would not have thought possible.

What does prayer mean to me? It is my outlet for praising and adoration, my comfort in times of sorrow and discouragement, my stabilizer when all seems out of control and my “hot line” to the Savior who never fails or leaves me. How rich I am!

Mary Brown

Showing the Way through Service

In John 14, Philip asked Jesus the question, “How can we know the way?” Jesus replied, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but by Me” (NASB). Jesus provides the only way to God the Father. How do we help people discover Jesus? How do we show people Jesus?

One way to show people the way to God the Father, through Jesus Christ His Son, is through service. Jesus said, “I did not come to be served, but to serve” Mark 10:45. Jesus lived a life of service ~ always serving people and helping people. One of the great things that I love about Tates Creek Christian Church is the many ways our people serve others. Tates Creek has a very strong committed core of people. These people do not just serve the members of this congregation, but also serve out in the community.

For example, I just learned a few weeks ago that the Grass Roots Sunday School class stocks the snacks for the Fourth Floor Hospice Unit at St. Joseph hospital. There is a room on that wing for the families of people in Hospice to go to for a break. This Sunday School Class stocks the snacks for that room once a month. What a beautiful way to serve people! What a wonderful time to minister to people who are going through a very difficult time!

Here is a small list of the many areas where Sunday School Classes, Small Groups, and individuals are serving: (not exhaustive)

Psalm 82:3 Mission ~ supporting an orphanage in Liberia

Room In The Inn ~ two Thursdays a month, Tates Creek provides overnight
housing and meals for homeless people

God’s Pantry ~ this ministry provides food for people

Julius Marks Elementary ~ tutoring, flower garden, prayer time with Teachers

Single Parents Night Out

Alcoholic Anonymous Breakfast

Turkey Give Away ~ Center Parkway Neighborhood

Collecting Medicine Bottles for Haiti

Church Under The Bridge ~ providing a worship service and food for
homeless folks

These are just a few and I know there are many more. If you are not part of a Sunday School Class or a Small Group, please check the brochure rack located near the Information Center to learn where you can connect.

Tommy Simpson

Pit Crew

What God is doing in a partnership between a public school and a church is something ONLY He can plan and orchestrate. For the past four years the partnership between Julius Marks Elementary and TCCC has continued to grow. This year alone there are 8 tutors going to JME on a weekly basis from our church. At Christmas time gifts were given to 15 kids and 6 families received Christmas baskets. In August, 250 backpacks were given away, but this year we personally handed the backpacks to the kids and families at the school’s back to school night. The latest incredible event ended with a LEX 18 news story “Ornaments for Orphans” where 1st, 2nd, and 5th graders made ornaments to sell. All proceeds went to the orphanage in Liberia that a group of people from TCCC started. This financial and spiritual support ministry is called Psalm 82:3 Mission. The end result was over $800 given directly to the children! It’s what God is doing, but for the past couple years we wondered if there was something we could be a part of that would get kids from JME into our church for more personal relationships and sharing Jesus with them!

In September, we asked about this idea and soon the new guidance counselor, Dustin Robinson, replied with a great need for a BOYS ONLY mentor group for preteen boys. Through October, November, and December, I met and prayed with school and community partners, and together we watched God move to start a new group called “Pit Crew.” We asked teachers to identify boys from the school that could use a program like this and they gave us 13 names. Then, just before Christmas I met with the boys and told them they had a chance to be a part of something new as a team. Together, the counselor and I, challenged them to “step up” and accept the challenge. We encouraged them by telling them they were special. I wish I would have had a camera to record their reactions. Boys that may not have had much confidence, sat up straight in their chairs, and puffed out their chest. To be asked was an honor to them.

So– running every Tuesday from 3:30-5:30 pm is Pit Crew! It’s a ministry built on I Timothy 4:12 “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example in speech, in life, in love, in faith, and in purity.” We are still looking for men who will accept the challenge. We have 3 dedicated mentors and a couple Jr. Mentors (high schoolers) on the team, but are open to more. It’s not a ministry for the medium commitment. It’s a ministry for men who want to commit to making a real difference in 16 weeks for a young boy or group of boys trying to find their way. Oh yeah, we’re also building race cars!

Matt Lee

Jesus is the Servant – John 13:1-20

Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love. The evening meal was being served..” John 13:1-2

Christian Service – An Intimate Labor of Love

Picture the intimacy of the evening in the upper room. The hands of Jesus calloused from his years as a carpenter gently breaking the bread and pouring the wine. Jesus’ hands pushing back from the table and rising to remove his outer garment. Jesus wrapping a towel around his waist, moving to his disciples. Kneeling to wash their dirty feet. A job reserved for the lowliest of servants or left undone. Had any of the disciples thought to wash the feet of Jesus? The hands of Jesus pouring water from pitcher to basin, rinsing the soil and sand from each disciple’s feet and tenderly wiping them dry again. It was an intimate act of service. An example to his beloved just as it is an example to us, His beloved. Followed by the command, (v15) “I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. (v17) Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them”.

Do we? Does the world recognize us by our love and service? The Savior of all mankind made Himself a servant to show His love, we must do no less. Workers in Christ’s service are all around us here at TCCC, workers reflecting Christ’s love to the world and growing God’s kingdom. It is found in the sweet faces of the nursery workers, the efforts of men who host the homeless, the gifts that send missionaries to the field, the hands that prepare meals for the bereaved, the list goes on and on. The desire for intentional service in the name of Jesus requires us to yoke ourselves to Jesus and allow him to set the pace. Allow him to complete the work through us. A Labor of Love sharing the truth about Jesus.

Becky Child

Jesus is the Good Shepherd

John 10:1-18

The Good Shepherd provides Salvation.

The Good Shepherd provides Redemption.

~ Isaiah 53:6

Only the Good Shepherd provides Redemption.

~ Romans 8:34

Only the Good Shepherd provides Redemption for All People.

~ Colossians 3:11

The Good Shepherd provides Protection.

The Good Shepherd protects His sheep from the Enemy.

~ I Peter 5:8; Revelation 2:10

The Good Shepherd protects His sheep from Wandering.

~ Hebrews 2:1; Hebrews 2:3

The Good Shepherd provides the Abundant Life.

The Abundant Life in Christ consists of Blessings.

~ Ephesians 1:3

The Abundant Life is only available in Christ!

~ Psalm 23:1; John 17:3

Lost…and Found

Traveling in the right direction has sometimes been a challenge for me. Several times I have been driving and missed my turn. Other times I simply didn’t use the directions I had with me. Still other times I didn’t even take directions. Allow me to share my stories with you.

The first story about losing my way happened when I was in middle school. A friend and I wanted to stay after school to go for a run. My friend wanted to stay to actually exercise. I, of course, wanted to stay so I could run over to see a girl and call it running. We received the permission needed to stay after, went for a run, stayed a little too long at the girl’s house (her fault), and returned back to school to catch our ride. When we arrived, though, my older brothers weren’t around. I looked everywhere for them before calling home to ask for help. My mom answered (excited I was alive, but not so excited I was late) and informed me my brothers were already home. She followed with simple directions “start running home” and then hung up. HOME WAS 7 MILES AWAY! I knew I was in trouble and for a variety of reasons decided to take a route through the country. Being a trained Boy Scout I followed the North Star (to go East). It didn’t end well and 2.5 hours later my run ended being chased by a friend’s dog in the dark. I called home again and this time my mom said, “Stay there! Before we call for another police search, we will come get you!”

The second story isn’t nearly as funny, but don’t judge me. It was the day after Terah and I were united in marriage. Our honeymoon journey would take us to Myrtle Beach for an amazing week away! However, when we started our journey we quickly learned that I hadn’t packed a map or printed off any directions. I knew it was southeast of where we were so I convinced Terah to trust me. We drove straight to the beach and arrived at 1 am. Terah was asleep so she didn’t know how many times we drove the same road looking for the hotel. It was then I learned there is a difference between North Myrtle Beach, where we were supposed to be, and Myrtle Beach.

The truth in both stories– none of us can find our way! We are all lost without Jesus! We all might have different strategies, but there is only ONE WAY to where we all want to go. When Jesus was preparing to die for all of us, He sat down with his disciples to comfort them. He wanted them to know something really important and He needed them to listen. He said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”- John 14:6

Matt Lee

Not Ashamed

Many years ago, as I was doing graduate level studies, I went to a university in Kansas to take a graduate level course in order to complete my Master’s degree. The university administration told me that I needed to be “adopted” by a graduate department at the university in order to be allowed to take any courses at that level. Thinking the natural department to be adopted by would be the school of religion, I approached the department head with my request. Once I was in his office I quickly found I was in the wrong place. Covering his bookshelves were books on every major religion and what seemed to be an over-abundance on Taoism. What I found lacking were books on Christianity and particularly the Bible. Along with that, I was quickly informed that my prior education was not up to par with the expectations of his department. Now, as I was immediately adopted by another department at the same university, I had to conclude that my transcripts were not what was lacking in this man’s requirements. It was instead his assumption that my Christian education was insufficient. I remember the words of the Apostle Paul coming to mind as I left his office; “professing to be wise they have become fools.

Brothers and Sisters, we live in a culture that increasingly thinks we are ignorant because we believe in the Gospel, the simple truth that Jesus is the way, the only way, to the Father. Just as that professor attempted to malign my Christian education, there are those who would cast a disparaging eye toward us in this culture because we believe that simple truth. Well, I will tell you that I never lost an ounce of confidence then, and those disparaging looks still don’t shake me in the least. Again, like the Apostle Paul said, “I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes….” (Romans 1:16)

The words of a favorite song of mine tell my story.

Jesus died to take my sins away.
I can still remember when, He changed my life way back then,
and the cross is just as real to me today.
I still believe in the power of the blood Jesus shed on Mt. Calvary.
I still hold to the hope that He’s gone to prepare a dwelling place for me.
I still cling to the promise that there is still forgiveness for the lost.
I still hold, I still hope, I still cling to the old rugged cross.

Tell me, is that your story too?

Kim Beckwith

Jesus is the Good Shepherd – John 10:1-18

Shepherds have always played an important role in God’s plan of salvation. Many of the great men He has called and spoken through have been shepherds. We know that Abel kept his flocks while Cain worked the soil, and the Lord looked with favor upon his offering. Abraham and Lot had flocks and herds. We are told that Isaac became rich, and his wealth continued to grow until he had so many flocks and herds that the Philistines envied him! When Pharaoh asked Joseph’s brothers their occupation, they reported that they were shepherds as their fathers before them, and they came to Egypt with Jacob and their flocks. Later when Moses flees to Midian, he tends the flocks with Jethro when the Lord calls him from the burning bush.

Of course, there is King David. Samuel comes to the house of Jesse to anoint the Lord’s chosen. When none of the seven sons are chosen, Jesse reveals that there is one more, the youngest, tending the sheep. When the boy David arrives, the Lord has Samuel rise and anoint him and the Spirit of the Lord came upon him. He would be king!

There is the birth of Jesus, announced not to priests or kings, but to shepherds on a hillside by not one angel, but by a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God!

So, it is no surprise that Jesus would use these familiar word pictures to help us visualize the relationship he desires to have with us. As our good shepherd, Jesus would not leave the herd when the wolf attacked. Rather, he would lay down his life to save the life of the sheep. Lay it down of his own accord, only to take it back up again.

Ah, but the wolf never gives up. The wolf is still after the sheep today. Circling the herd. Looking for the weak lamb. The good shepherd calls the sheep by name, but we have to listen! Spend time with the shepherd, so that you will know his voice, and take care of your fellow lambs. God Bless.

Charlie Byers

Sermon outline, February 15, 2015, “Jesus is the Lord”

Jesus is the Lord

John 9

Honor His Wisdom.

Not all Suffering is the Result of Sin.

~ Romans 8:28

Spiritual Suffering is far worse than Physical Suffering.

~ Revelation 21:8

Honor His Authority.

Obey His Authority Unquestionably.

~ Romans 6:16; John 15:10-11

Obey His Authority Instantly.

~ Luke 6:46

Honor His Work.

Be Transparent with the Gospel.

~ Galatians 2:20; Galatians 5:24

Be Bold with the Gospel.

~ Romans 1:16; I Corinthians 9:16

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