Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Whiteboard: Heaven Knows

For the next two Sundays we'll be receiving our Special Reconciliation Offering at the church.

The Special Offering is used to fund our Church’s mission priority to become an pro-reconciling/ anti-racist church through experiential education, inclusive worship and intentional dialogue across racial/ethnic difference. Funds from this offering are providing for leadership development in our camps, our communities and our congregations as well as providing resources to promote small group study and community-action. Your giving is changing lives and building hope for realm of God for our children and for Christ's Church!

I've adapted this year's Special Reconciliation Offering Logo for the Whiteboard this week.

I'll be drawing on Luke 16:19-31 (the Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus) to talk about how the work of reconciliation is something that we can embody right here, right now. I'll see you on Sunday!

For more information about the church's Special Reconciliation Offering, click here


Luke 16:19-31 The Rich Man and Lazarus
‘There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. And at his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, who longed to satisfy his hunger with what fell from the rich man’s table; even the dogs would come and lick his sores. The poor man died and was carried away by the angels to be with Abraham. The rich man also died and was buried. In Hades, where he was being tormented, he looked up and saw Abraham far away with Lazarus by his side. He called out, “Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am in agony in these flames.” But Abraham said, “Child, remember that during your lifetime you received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner evil things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in agony. Besides all this, between you and us a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who might want to pass from here to you cannot do so, and no one can cross from there to us.” He said, “Then, father, I beg you to send him to my father’s house— for I have five brothers—that he may warn them, so that they will not also come into this place of torment.” Abraham replied, “They have Moses and the prophets; they should listen to them.” He said, “No, father Abraham; but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.” He said to him, “If they do not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.” ’

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Whiteboard: Commissioned for Ministry

So what advice does 1 Timothy 2:1-7 have to say to us on a Sunday when we'll be commissioning our very own Al Beasley as the Minister of Visitation at First Christian Church Scottsdale? 

Well, by way of instructions you could certainly do worse than the first line of this Sunday's scripture passage "First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings should be made for everyone."

I condensed that opening verse into three simple words that fill the Whiteboard this week...

"Pray for everyone." What a wonderful charge, particularly on a Sunday when we will be blessing the ministry of the Rev. Al Beasley and his work as our Minister of Visitation. Not only are we praying for him this Sunday, we'll be sending him forth to share the good news of Jesus Christ through sharing visits, communion, and yes prayers with others.

It will be a wonderful worship this Sunday. An opportunity to affirm one of our very own and bless his ministry. I'll see you Sunday.


1 Timothy 2:1-7 Instructions concerning Prayer

First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings should be made for everyone, 2for kings and all who are in high positions, so that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and dignity.  

3This is right and is acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour, 4who desires everyone to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. 5For there is one God; there is also one mediator between God and humankind, Christ Jesus, himself human, 6 who gave himself a ransom for all — this was attested at the right time.  

7For this I was appointed a herald and an apostle (I am telling the truth, I am not lying), a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.

Three Things from Administrative Council

Administrative Council had their regularly scheduled meeting this past Sunday September 15, 2013 immediately following worship. As is our practice, at the end of the meeting we identified three items that were the most important things from our meeting that we wanted to make sure and share with the congregation. We like to call them the "Three Things You Should Know"and here they are for September 15th's meeting.

  1. Members of our Hope Partnership Team met with the Administrative Council to share their reflections on the Hope Partnership experience so far. We heard words like "innovation and energy", "being the hands and feet of Jesus", "renewed enthusiasm", and "embrace the future." The Hope Team also shared their three page Whitepaper Report that includes important demographic studies of our congregation, our neighborhood community, and the mission opportunities that exist for us.
  2. Pictorial Directories are coming! Our Membership Team reported that things are coming together for our new Pictorial Directory. For right now we just need you to mark your calendars (Lifetouch will be on the church campus November 14-16 taking pictures), know that the team is in place (Bob and Shirley Bruns are leading our efforts), and that we'll be sharing more information with you in all sorts of ways.
  3. We'll be Commissioning Al Beasley as our Minister of Visitation on Sunday September 22 as part of our Sunday morning worship service. You won't want to miss this special worship as we affirm and bless Al's ministry here at FCC Scottsdale. 

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Whiteboard: Lost and Found

Have you ever lost your car keys?

Or your wallet?

Or your sunglasses?

Well, this Sunday we're talking about mercy because Jesus used illustrations about "lost" things (sheep and coins) to demonstrate the abundance of God's grace, mercy, and love for us.

It is a surprising story, really, and one that you won't want to miss.

So do me a favor, put those car keys in a familiar place this weekend so that on Sunday morning you can find them without a problem and then join us for worship as we celebrate the God who shows us grace, mercy, and love.

Sneak Peek

We have a new website coming!

We had hoped it would launch by Kickoff Sunday, but we are waiting on the very last technical pieces to come together.

So here are some Sneak Peak images of the forthcoming website. Once it has "gone live" we'll make sure and share that word too. But for now, enjoy these little teaser glimpses of the totally redesigned, fully interactive, visitor friendly, FCC Scottsdale Website!

The new homepage has all sorts of features. A sliding image bar up at the top that
will change and update. Live tiles at the bottom that include active links (and images)
from the most recent sermon, and a constantly update "Upcoming Events" section that
list all, well, upcoming events from our calendar!

 Speaking of the Calendar, the new website will have native integration of our
church's Google Calendar, which will allow folks to see all of our events
one month at a time, and click on individual programs to learn more information.

We'll also have an interactive map for visitors so that they can plug in their
own address and get turn by turn directions to our church!

The new website also has a built in media player that will integrate
our Recorded Sermons in a much more user-friendly way.
Plus, for the first time folks will be able to listen to recorded sermons
directly from their smart phones and tablets!

The website will be launching soon! Keep a look out for more details!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Whiteboard: KickOff Sunday

At long last the Summer is over and it is time for...

Yep, that's right. It is KICKOFF SUNDAY here at the church. We'll celebrate the beginning of our Fall Program Year (which marks the return of our Sunday School Classes, our DWM Circle Groups, the Chancel Choir, the Youth Group, the Workday Crew, etc...) with a festive worship service and a special time of blessing for everything that is getting started again this fall!

See you this Sunday!