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Mercy

In a world that’s getting even and casting shade, mercy is a word that is not used very much any more, if at all. Did you know that the original word for “mercy” (Hesed – in Hebrew) actually referred to a character trait of God and not an action of man? The definition of mercy flows from an understanding that God is not just merciful, but his very nature is to show mercy to us.

Mercy:
Hesed is also defined as loving kindness 176 times in scripture, loving kindnesses 7 times, loyal deeds 1 time, loyalty 6 times, mercies 1 time, merciful 2 times, mercy 1 time, righteousness 1 time, unchanging love 2 times.

All of that revelation is crammed into one little word, “Mercy”: God’s unmerited favor

David spoke of God’s mercy:
Psalm 25:6  NIV
6 Remember, LORD, your great mercy and love, for they are from of old.

Psalm 40:11
11 Do not withhold your mercy from me, LORD; may your love and faithfulness always protect me.

Isaiah uses “hesed” or “mercy” as “loving kindness” in Isaiah 63:7
7 I will  mention the loving kindnesses of the  LORD, and the  praises of the LORD, according to all that the LORD hath  bestowed on us, and the great goodness toward the  house of  Israel, which he hath bestowed on them according to his mercies, and according to the multitude of his loving kindnesses.

The experience of God’s people is that God’s mercy, unlike human mercy, cannot be exhausted ( 2 Sam 24:14 ; Lam 3:22 ). Yet divine mercy is not blind or dumb; although God tolerated Israel’s rebellion with mercy for a very long time ( Nehemiah 9:17 Nehemiah 9:19 Nehemiah 9:31 ; Jer 3:12 ), ultimately ungodliness in Israel was met by a withdrawal of God’s mercy, leading to judgment (Lamentations 2:2 Lamentations 2:21 ; Zech 1:12). But even in judgment and discipline God’s mercy can be seen and hoped for ( 2 Sam 24:14 ; Psalm 57:1 ; Isa 55:7 ; 60:10 ; Jer 31:20 ; Hab 3:2 ; cf. Tobit 6:17), for it is part of the basic disposition of love toward his people, and it directs his actions ultimately in ways that benefit his people.
Mercy as the Foundation of God’s Covenant. Mercy and hesed [d,s,j], God’s covenant love, are integrally related. So close is the relationship that hesed [d,s,j] sometimes is to be viewed in terms of mercy. In this relationship, mercy then comes to be seen as the quality in God that directs him to forge a relationship with people who absolutely do not deserve to be in relationship with him. Mercy is manifested in God’s activity on behalf of his people to free them from slavery; it is neither theory nor principle. As the passages taken up with the establishment of the covenant with Israel show, God’s mercy is a driving force in leading him to create a relationship with Israel ( Exod 34:6 ; Deut 4:31 ; 13:17 ; Hosea 2:19 ); its meaning through hesed [d,s,j] extends to that of loyalty based on merciful love and since that covenant was extended to is (the gentiles) it is God’s Mercy that gives us a relationship with him.

Some of the best relationships you will develop throughout your life will be ones that started with mercy. So go show some lovingkindness  to the world today and watch as the best relationships you could ever ask for are develop from simply showing mercy!

~Pastor C

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Casting Cares

1 Peter 5:7 Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you. 

The crushing weight of “fitting in” has created a gap between how someone looks outwardly and how they are doing inwardly. The greatest thing Jesus did when He walked the earth is that He touched those that others avoided. He didn’t stay at a distance, but He came near to us. Being our substitution for sin was HIS greater mission, but he died on the cross carrying ALL of our burdens with HIM as well. He offers something beautiful for us in this verse. “Cast” is a verb in the original Greek that means “to throw upon” (literally and figuratively) “Cast upon” – place upon.. that means you don’t have to carry the weight of fear and anxiety because HE promised to carry it for you all of time. If you will just CAST IT ON HIM. What a beautiful revelation!!! The weight of HIS cross included the weight of everything I would cast on him because I was not designed to be weighted by that. We were made to be free. So since he carried it to that hill so long ago…take him up on the offer and cast your cares, fears and anxiety..not in the future for another day, not in the past where your mind can go back and pick it up again…but forever gone because it’s cast on HIM. Now start throwing it from you onto HIM and go live a lighter life!

~Pastor C

He is with you, and He is for you.

What You Should Remind Yourself of Each Day

“And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.” (Acts 2:2-4, ESV)

The events in Acts 2 signify a moment that would forever change the life of Jesus’ followers and their mission on this earth. The promised Holy Spirit had been given, and a supernatural filling had occurred. In a moment, the supernatural interrupted the natural, and they began speaking in other languages to the amazement of all who witnessed.

This filling was the presence of God making its home in man. But it wasn’t just God’s presence that made a home in them — it was also His power. And it’s this power that Jesus referred to as He prepared to ascend to Heaven and tasked them with spreading the Gospel to the ends of the earth (Acts 1:8).

This was no simple mission. In fact, it was impossible, naturally speaking. Facing intense persecution, God’s Word and God’s love were the only two weapons they were given. But in spite of all the odds, the Gospel spread, and followers of Christ were multiplied.

Thousands of years later, we’re still witnessing this multiplication. But we’re not invited to just witness it; we’re invited to participate in it. As a believer in Christ, we experience the gift of the Holy Spirit — not as an accessory or add-on, but as the operating system of our lives. It is the proof of the Presence of God in you and that the Power of God is with you.
As you begin each day, remind yourself of this fact: You’re not alone. God’s presence is with you, and so is His power.

~Pastor C.

 

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We are located in Waukesha County a Suburb of Milwaukee Wisconsin.

God Can Work With What You’ve Got!

“Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.” (1 Peter 5:6)

In the day to day struggle of life we can forget that he is working for our good and we do not have to feel like we have it all together every day of our lives. So, today if you feel you have less to give just remember to give it to the Lord first and rest in the undying truth that little is much in the hands of the Master.

 

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We would love for you to join us! Click HERE to find out what to expect!
We are located in Waukesha County a Suburb of Milwaukee Wisconsin.

Anxious for Nothing

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7, NKJV)

Paul wasn’t one to pull punches, but for him to say that we should be anxious for nothing is a pretty strong statement.

I don’t know about you, but when I read that scripture, I’m thinking, What about my responsibilities? What about the troubled times we live in? Shouldn’t I be concerned about some things?

Certainly Paul isn’t commanding us not to care about important things. But when we approach things the wrong way, we end up turning a genuine concern into a needless anxiety.

Let me give you a way to put your worries in perspective.

Verse 6 says to be anxious for “nothing.” If you break that word apart to say “no thing,” it can serve as a great reminder of what not to be worried about. Because if it’s a thing, there’s no need to worry — it’s just a thing. Be anxious for no thing.

Be concerned about the state of your soul and the souls of others. Be concerned about God’s work in the world. Those are genuine concerns. But when it comes to things, you have to learn to look at them and say (like we used to say in the ’90s), “It’s nothing but a thing.”

A financial need? A conflict in a relationship? A tactical decision to make in your career? By all means, pray about these things. And meanwhile, do your best to handle them in a wise way. But don’t give them more attention than they deserve. There’s no reason God’s peace can’t flood your heart even while you’re dealing with innumerable things.

Take control of what you can today and trust God with what you can’t.

 

Looking for a Church in Brookfield, WI?
We would love for you to join us! Click HERE to find out what to expect!
We are located in Waukesha County a Suburb of Milwaukee Wisconsin.

Appreciating The Pause to Your Progress

“In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps.” (Proverbs 16:9)

I’ve had the opportunity to travel a lot in the past few years. While I certainly appreciate the privilege, I’m a pretty uptight traveler… especially when layovers are involved.

It’s like airport purgatory. While these layovers have tested my patience and have been a cause of frustration in my life, they’ve also taught me a valuable lesson.

They’ve taught me that a temporary stop to a journey — while inconvenient — doesn’t mean I won’t reach my destination. In fact, in all of my layover experiences, I’ve never been permanently stuck somewhere.

The layover is part of the process — and sometimes necessary to get you where you need to go. If you’re experiencing a layover right now, you might as well get Starbucks and make the most of it!

We must learn to appreciate the pause – without thinking its an end to our progress. God has not changed His mind about your final destination.

Pastor C

 

Looking for a Church in Brookfield, WI?
We would love for you to join us! Click HERE to find out what to expect!
We are located in Waukesha County a Suburb of Milwaukee Wisconsin.

There’s More to Your Story

“Jesus called out with a loud voice, ‘Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.’ When he had said this, he breathed his last.” (Luke 23:46)

When Jesus uttered His final words and breathed His last on the cross, all seemed lost. The Savior of the world appeared to have been defeated by death, and His followers scattered into hiding. This scene didn’t make sense — at least, according to His disciples.

They had been following Jesus and witnessing miracle after miracle, only for it to end with Him taking His final breath on a brutal Roman cross.

Except it wasn’t the end. As we now know, there’s more to the story — much more.

What appeared to be final death was actually the extinction of it.
What looked like certain defeat was actually divine destiny.
What seemed like the end was actually just the beginning.

Three days later, Jesus rose from the grave and permanently disabled the sting of death. Not only that — His death served as the process by which God would make His life-giving, life-changing Spirit available to all who believe.

The scene you find yourself in right now may not appear to be favorable, but don’t judge your whole story by it — it’s just a scene. The same Spirit that raised Jesus from the grave is now alive and working for us.

Resurrection power makes all things possible.

 

Looking for a Church in Brookfield, WI?
We would love for you to join us! Click HERE to find out what to expect!
We are located in Waukesha County a Suburb of Milwaukee Wisconsin.

Who’s Writing Your Headlines?

“You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.” -Genesis 50:20

One thing I admire about Joseph: He never allowed any disappointment to define his life. The only thing that Joseph allowed to define his life was the presence/promise of God. Whether he was being sold into slavery by his brothers, serving as a dream interpreter for the king, or ruling over Egypt — Joseph knew who he was, and who was with him.

Joseph had every right to play the victim. But he chose to allow the hand of God — not his hardships — to write his headlines. He was able to look back at his life and say to the brothers who sold him into slavery, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good.”

You may not be able to see it at this moment, but God’s hand is at work in your life. And if you will choose to trust it, that same hand can write your headlines.

 

Looking for a Church in Brookfield, WI?
We would love for you to join us! Click HERE to find out what to expect!
We are located in Waukesha County a Suburb of Milwaukee Wisconsin.

God’s Bucket List:

The little women came to the well at noon, hoping to see no one because most women went in the morning or evening for water. She came in the punishing middle eastern heat (modern day Palestine) to ensure no one would be there. But that day there was a man at the well. He said he was there to drink but Jacob’s well was deep and even though she made many mistakes in life she was not ignorant. She pointed out, “Rabbi, how can you draw with no bucket?” He said if you knew who I was you would ask me for a drink and I would give you living water that will flow from inside you. (from your spirit – rivers of living water) This water will quench your thirst in ways that you will never need a drink again. Of course she said, “sir, give me of this water!” It would mean never having to make the lonely trip in the middle of the day. She was a scarlet women, having had 5 husbands, and now with one that was number 6 but they were not married. This Rabbi didn’t gloss it over, he touched her pain by saying go get your husband. She got religious – which is what most do when Jesus call us out on something. Then he said I am the messiah and I will fill you with my spirit and it will be like water in your soul that satisfies…you will be the vessel…the bucket. This is what she was searching for because she was so excited about the fact that she was invited and welcome….she had a place. Imagine the joy she felt that he didn’t just want from her like every other man she knew, but he wanted something for her. She was selected…across cultural and ethnic and religious barriers. Jesus said…”they may not, but I chose you” and that day she found out that she was on God’s bucket list…she was unaccepted by so many….but to Jesus…the well sitting on a well (preacher humor ????)…she was was a worthy vessel, called by God. (She became the first evangelist to
Sumaria, and forever a good deed done is labeled as being done by a good Sumaritan)
She took the message of Jesus to that city before Phillip the Apostle and there is buried John the Baptist- who the bible calls greatest man – a revivalist who baptized Jesus himself. Could it be that it all started with a little lady that said yes to God’s call and that day left her bucket at the well to become a bucket for living water. God has called you and God gifted you and those calling and gifts will always call to your heart and lead you in life. Look back and you will see evidence of them at work. You are a chosen vessel and no one or no “thing” can take those gifts and callings away.

Romans 11:29
For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance

The Greatest minds and talents of time recognize that these gifts and calling should lead us:
“The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away.” ~Pablo Picasso

When God calls and when he gave or embedded gifts in you. They are irrevocable. You may have filled your bucket with many things in life trying to find satisfaction. But he wants to fill you with his Spirit to activate and empower your gift and callings. God has a list of great things for you, that will flow out of what he put in you. Because, you are “God’s Bucket List.”
NOTHING can disqualify you for the gifts he gave you. Remember If God started it or gave it to you…its unstoppable!

“For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.” ~Romans 11:29

 

Looking for a Church in Brookfield, WI?
We would love for you to join us! Click HERE to find out what to expect!
We are located in Waukesha County a Suburb of Milwaukee Wisconsin.

Faith Footsteps

When Moving Forward Makes No Sense

“On the seventh day, they got up at daybreak and marched around the city seven times in the same manner, except that on that day they circled the city seven times. The seventh time around, when the priests sounded the trumpet blast, Joshua commanded the army, ‘Shout! For the LORD has given you the city!'” (Joshua 6:15-16)

As Joshua rounded the walls for the seventh time on the seventh day, it’s hard to imagine the nervousness he felt — and perhaps even the confusion. He had spent seven days walking around a city wall leading an entire nation of people. And if that wasn’t enough, the final instructions for obtaining victory was for his people to blow trumpets and give a loud shout.

Why did they have to walk around a city wall? Why seven laps? Why seven days? And how was shouting supposed to cause a structurally sound wall to collapse?

A lot of it didn’t make sense, but when it comes to faith — that isn’t that unusual. In fact, rarely are the instructions of faith perfectly logical and comfortable.

Faith will tell you to have patience when everything else is telling you to panic.
Faith will tell you to hold on when everything else is telling you to let go.
Faith will steady your footsteps and will tell you to push forward when everything else is telling you to pull back.
You may not be facing a monstrous wall like Joshua was, but you are facing something. And even if the way forward doesn’t make sense, the good news is it doesn’t have to. Having faith isn’t about making sense; it’s about moving forward, no matter what. Put faith in your footsteps knowing the one that guides you is a good God.

The LORD makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him;
Psalm 37:23

Be blessed!

 

Looking for a Church in Brookfield, WI?
We would love for you to join us! Click HERE to find out what to expect!
We are located in Waukesha County a Suburb of Milwaukee Wisconsin.