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Showing posts from April, 2020

When the Alarm Sounds- a poem by Lori Luhrman

When the Alarm Sounds The sun came up again today, Its colors bled through the blinds And into my weary sleep-filled eyes. “What will it be today?” I groaned. Diapers. Bread-making. The same old thing. All day I toiled, in a race with the sun. Who will reach the finish line first? Exhaustion in my voice, a weight about my feet, I sputtered and slowed, ground to a halt. The sun sank too completing its work; But it fared far better than me, Exuding colors deep and rich— Almost as if it saved its best for last. A majestic thing happened today: a sunrise, The pink so innocent and promising, Manna for my soul, a light to my eyes. “What will it be today?” I asked with bated breath. Diapers. Bread-making. Miracles. All day I trusted in my companion, the sun, Savored the day’s adventure with him by my side. Exhaustion in my voice, a pleasant heaviness in my limbs, The sun and I coasted toward the finish line, Victory on our minds. A peace descended, enfolded me in i

Northside Church Kids take Philippians 4: 4-7

We pray that a lasting impact to Northside Church from Covid-19 is that our Church family will forever continue memorizing chunks of Scripture together, storing it up like treasure in our hearts. Here's the next adorably offered memory verse: Philippians 4: 4-7. If Paul, from prison, can rejoice in the LORD always, we pray the same Spirit that lived inside him will faithfully help us to do that as well.   

A Time For Every Matter Under Heaven- Charles Lewis

A Time For Every Matter Under Heaven For many of us, the exhaustion is starting to set in. We are tired. We are tired of the endless news cycle and trying to keep up with all of the latest developments as more information is being made available. We are tired of mourning lives and livelihoods lost on a personal, local, national and global level. We are tired in our bodies as we adjust to working from home and staying engaged with our families - feeling as if there are not enough hours in the day to be a good parent and a good employee. As informational, emotional and physical exhaustion become more prevalent, it’s natural to want to throw in the towel. To just say “I’m done with all of this.” Today, I want to offer us three things. An encouragement, an observation, and an invitation. First, what I want to encourage us that it is okay to be tired. We are human – both fallen and finite. There is no shame in being tired. Our good and gracious Father gave us a Sabbath for a

Going through the Valley - Shaqrah Aryee

We hope you're blessed as you listen to Shaqrah Aryee strengthen and encourage us, even when we're walking through the Valley, to keep our eyes fixed on things above. We're walking through it , not staying there. Hallelujah! Thanks so much Shaqrah!

A Personal Comfort - a reflection by Reinesha Jarman

“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.” – Psalms 23:4 “…for thou art with me.” Me. He is with me. David could have said, “for thou art with us.” However, he said “me.” This is personal. This isn’t to say that everyone else doesn’t matter. This isn’t to say that God neglected everyone. This isn’t to say that he is more important than any of the other sheep. This isn’t to say that he was the only one in the herd. This is the realization that in the midst of all this David needed to be comforted. In the midst of this prayer, David needed to be protected. These are personal fears. These are personal woes. God is a personal God. In this time, I know that the world needs Him. I need him. His comfort is longed for daily in a very personal way by each of us. We all may be enduring this virus at the same time, but we are not enduring the same struggles. We are teachers, students, nur

Rejoicing in the LORD with Ms. Patricia - an encouragement from Nikki Passmore

In this season, I am missing worshiping in the same physical space with you ALL, but in particular: with Ms. Patricia. Ms. Patricia’s presence during worship is SO deeply encouraging to my soul. Her way of roaming and dancing and engaging often quickens my heart and helps me engage more fully. I get stuck… in my own thoughts, my own sin (fear of man, seeking approval), my own way of doing things. Even in worship! Then… I hear her singing in the back, or I see her dancing and praising in the front – while beckoning others to join her in worship to our King, and… that’s all it takes. My inner spirit gets released from the bonds I didn’t even know were holding it down. Although I miss her physical presence fiercely during Sunday services, I have come to see that God is actually magnifying her encouragement to the body in this time. I have heard multiple folks share of having been blessed, encouraged, and spurred on by her bold prayers and Gospel reminders. One person commented

Union with Christ gives us hope - a reflection from Tyler Land

This past Lord’s day Charles preached a message of great comfort and joy to us. In this sermon he said something remarkable: “Part of what makes the gospel good news is that we don't have to choose between forgiveness of sins, freedom from bondage, eternal beauty, and eternal peace. All of these gifts are amazing and all of these gifts are ours because they flow out of us being united with Christ.” Every single aspect of our redemption is wrapped up in our indestructible union with Christ. Now THAT is great cause for comfort and joy and ought to move our hearts to worship! He has planned our union from eternity-past, he guarantees our union in eternity-future...Glory to God alone, we are united to Christ even in this life! United To Christ In This Life “In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.” Ephesians 2:22 All the great themes of our salvation can all be summed up in those two beautiful words: “In him”. We have been predestine

Home(ward) Bound - by Charles Lewis

Home. What comes up for you when you hear that word? For many of us, it’s a sense of warmth and comfort. It’s a place where we belong and a place that we long for. It’s a place where we are loved. Countless songs have been sung about it from J. Cole’s  “I’ll be home for the holidays, so when you see me better holla at me. I gotta leave, wish that I could stay. But I’ll be home for the holidays.” (Home for the Holidays) to John Denver’s “Country roads take me home to the place where I belong. West Virginia. Mountain Mama. Take me home. Country Roads.” (Take Me Home, Country Roads) You may be familiar with the famous Karate Kid meme And we are all well acquainted with the cliché “home is where the heart is.” Home is a desire that exists deep within the soul of every human being, because were made for it. And as we continue in a posture of celebration during this Eastertide, I am helped by being reminded that one of the most breathtaking truths of the resurrection is

He is with me - a reflection from Kelsi Drake

Recently, I was reading the story of when an angel of the Lord comes to Gideon and tells him that he is going to save the Israelites from the hands of Midian, whom they had been oppressed by after their own rebellion against God. The angel says to Gideon “The LORD is with you, O mighty man of valor. Gideon responds by answering “Please sir, if the LORD is with us, why has all this happened to us? And where are all his wonderful deeds that our fathers recounted to us, saying, ‘Did not the LORD bring us up from Egypt? But now the LORD has forsaken us and given us into the hand of Midian.” (Judges 6) I thought about that interaction for days. At first, I thought it was Gideon’s boldness to immediately point out his disappointment and doubt when he encountered an angel of the Lord. However, after I reflected on it more, I realized this section stood out to me because I so often ask God the same question. “If you’re the good God I have heard about, and who I believe I follow, why is this

He restores my soul - a reflection from Graham Howell

In thinking about verse 3 of Psalm 23, “… he restores my soul”,  I was led to think about another verse that I have meditated on over the last few years. “So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.” 2 Cor. 4:16-17 I definitely feel the outer “wasting away”. I will be 67 in July. I am not as steady on my feet as I once was, and it’s hard for me to get up off the floor when I play with my grandchildren. They can run faster, leap higher, play longer than me. That’s a reality and it is not likely to get better. I’m in the fall of my life and I want desperately to leave a legacy as a faithful follower of Christ to my children and grandchildren and all

A God who Grieves - a Saturday reflection from Jessica Miller

A God Who Grieves John 11:1-6, 30-35 Today is Saturday of Holy Week and tomorrow resurrection Sunday, but Jesus’s followers and friends didn’t know what Sunday would hold. Good Friday disrupted their lives. Jesus died. Their loss and grief was real, even if momentary.  I’ve been sitting in John 11 for a few days now. There is so much that could be said regarding this story, too much for a blog post. The raising of Lazarus is the last of Jesus’s miracles in the gospel of John. Most of us are probably familiar with this story and how it ends: Standing before Lazarus’s tomb, Jesus has the stone rolled away and calls to the dead man “come out.” I’ve read this passage many times, but today I’m particularly struck by some of the details leading up to the miraculous raising of Lazarus. Mary and Martha are confident of Jesus’s love and affection for their brother so they send word: “Lord, he whom you love is ill” (v 3). The sisters desire for Jesus to come and offer physical

Manna from a Man of Sorrows - a Meditation from Charles Lewis

“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” In Matthew 27, we are told that these are the last words that Jesus Christ uttered before he cried out with a loud voice and yielded up his spirit. Jesus’ last words before dying, according to Matthew’s gospel, were words of biblical lament. Matthew begins his gospel by calling Jesus the Son of David. It is fitting then, that as Jesus was uttering “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” on the cross, he was joining in with David who used those same exact words to begin Psalm 22. “ My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?      Why are you so far from saving me, from the words of my groaning? O my God, I cry by day, but you do not answer,      and by night, but I find no rest.” – Psalm 22:1-2 Laments make up forty percent of the Psalms (more than any other type). David, the man who scripture calls “a man after God’s own heart” was a man very familiar with lament. Biblical lament, in many ways, is the pathway to God’s he