Lent 2017: Resurrection Prayer Guide

Acts 4:23-31 describes an early church that prayed in unity, was filled with the Holy Spirit, and spoke the Word of God with boldness! That is our prayer for Grace Bible Church. Follow this guide to pray unified prayers for our community and our world. There are 40 days marked in blue for unified prayer and fasting as the church “scattered”. Sundays are marked in red for celebrating and worshipping as the church “gathered”.

download-pdf-button

If you would like to extend your prayer time, an additional prayer guide can be downloaded as an app for $1 called “Seek God 2017”. This guide follows a different format.

This year we will celebrate Jesus’ Resurrection on Sunday, April 16th, 2017. In reality, Christians depend on the resurrection everyday of our life, but this is the anniversary day that is widely recognized around the world. We usually welcome more visitors on Easter than on any other Sunday throughout the year. Since it’s a big day, we offer an extra service at sunrise and we offer a video overflow room during the other morning services. We always love to share Jesus with people who don’t know Him, and Easter is our largest opportunity to do that. I’d like our church to be unified in seeking to love our community well. Let’s try these three ways to prepare for Easter at Grace Bible Church.

1) Pray & Fast for 40 Days

Not counting the Sundays, there are 40 days from March 1st to Easter Sunday on April 16th. This 40 day period is sometimes called “Lent” (for the “lengthening” of days in the spring). Let’s spend these 40 days praying for others to see and follow Jesus. We have included Scriptures and suggested prayers in this guide to get you started. Fasting is a great way to focus our prayers. Use the Sundays as days to temporarily break your fast as you feast and gather with God’s people. Many Christians experience an increased sensitivity to God’s goodness through fasting. Fasting is not a form of self-punishment. Fasting is giving something up temporarily to recognize that Jesus is our ultimate joy. If you have never fasted before, we recommend that you start small. Do not give up all food for 40 days. Perhaps you could give up sugar, coffee, or soda. If you are more experienced you might skip one meal per day. The idea is to turn your heart to Jesus in prayer every time you miss whatever it is you are giving up. Many fast from food, but you might give up TV, or Facebook. The point is not to make yourself miserable, the point is to run to Jesus in prayer. Spend 40 days praying for our friends and neighbors to follow Jesus.

2) Cultivate Deeper Relationships

If we love others well, we will care about what they think and how they see the world. If Christ brings us hope, we will want to share that with others. The best way to share with others is to genuinely understand them. It is always encouraging when we value someone’s perspective. Seek to understand the motivations and heart beliefs of others. Ask the Spirit to tell you when to speak and when to listen. Ask good questions and listen well.

3) Invite Others to Church

Invite someone who is not following Jesus to visit church and hear about Him. Offer to meet them and sit with them. Our worship services are designed to remind us that Jesus is better than anything else. The Holy Spirit uses the proclamation of Jesus to change people. In Romans 1:16, Paul says, “…the gospel…is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes.” The Gospel has the power to push competing loves out of our hearts. Our gatherings are designed to remind disciples of the greatness of Jesus, but also to help people consider Jesus for the first time. Invite someone to church this spring.

In 1 Corinthians 15:7, Paul says,

If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins.” The resurrection of Christ is our guarantee of hope in a world of grief and pain. Our faith is not just a weekend hobby, but it is our reason for getting up every day. Grace changes everything! Let’s spend the next 40 days praying that Jesus will be more evident in our lives as well as in the lives of those around us.

download-pdf-button

Advertisements

Building Plan Update, May 2016

[From Jim Wilson, Assistant Pastor for Operations]

The Building Blues

We’ve been at this for a while now, actually more than a year. We consulted, planned, evaluated plans, and waited. While we waited for the permits for the addition to our main building we prepared for construction and reconfigured the breezeway between the buildings to accommodate more pedestrian traffic and offer better protection from the elements. We installed the new glass doors on the east side of the sanctuary to allow better access in and out of the building. We reconfigured the stage to increase our seating capacity (many thanks to Richard Fitzgerald for giving days of his time to staining and finishing the new wood on the stage). All of that went quite well. We patiently waited for permits and estimates.

Finally, permits were promised within days and we got the final estimates for the cost of the project. We were stunned. Suddenly our plans felt out of reach. Back to consulting, planning, evaluating plans, and waiting. We had to step back and consider other options. We are back to waiting for cost estimates. We are confused and perplexed.

This bend in the road causes me a great deal of uncertainty. Did I miss something? Are we being unrealistic in our expectations? Does God want us to work through a hard decision? Does God want us to give up and do something else? I’m sure I’m not the only one who is working through these and other questions about a plan that doesn’t go according to our desires.

We need wisdom on how to proceed. Would you please pray for us as we try to find our way through this maze of uncertainty? And, if you are also dealing with uncertainties in life, and are confused by your circumstances, take heart in these words that God used to get my attention:

Psalm 62: 1
“For God alone my soul waits in silence;
From him comes my salvation.
He alone is my rock and my salvation,
My fortress; I shall not be greatly shaken.”

 

For more information on the Building Plan, visit begrace.org/building.
For more information about Grace Bible Church, visit begrace.org.

Celebrate The Resurrection: Easter and Lent

Easter is the time of year that we remember Christ’s resurrection from the dead. This year we will celebrate the Resurrection on Sunday, March 27th, 2016. We usually welcome more visitors on Easter than on any other Sunday throughout the year. Since it’s a special day, we offer an extra service at sunrise and we offer a video overflow room during the other morning services.

We always love to share Jesus with people who don’t know Him, and Easter is our largest opportunity to do that. I’d like our church to be unified in seeking to love our community well. Let’s try these three ways to prepare for Easter at Grace Bible Church.

1) Pray & Fast for 40 Days

Starting today, there are 40 days until Resurrection Sunday. This 40 day period is sometimes called “Lent” (for the “lengthening” of days in the spring). Let’s spend these 40 days praying for others to see and follow Jesus. Fasting is a great way to focus our prayers. Fasting is not a form of self-punishment. Fasting is giving something up temporarily to recognize that Jesus is our ultimate joy. Many Christians experience an increased sensitivity to God’s goodness through fasting. If you have never fasted before, I recommend that you start small. Do not give up all food for 40 days. Perhaps you could give up sugar, coffee, or soda. If you are more experienced you might skip one meal per day. The idea is to turn your heart to Jesus in prayer every time you miss whatever it is you are giving up. Many fast from food, but you might give up TV, or Facebook. The point is not to make yourself miserable, the point is to run to Jesus in prayer. Spend the next 40 days praying for our friends and neighbors to follow Jesus.

2) Ask Good Questions

If Christ brings us hope, we will want to share that with others. The best way to share with others is to genuinely understand them. It is always encouraging when people value our perspective. Seek to understand the motivations and heart beliefs of others. Ask the Spirit to tell you when to speak and when to listen. If we love others well, we will care about what they think and how they see the world. Ask good questions and listen well.

3) Invite Others to Church

Invite someone who is not following Jesus to visit church and hear about Him. Our worship services are designed to remind us that Jesus is better than anything else. The Holy Spirit uses the proclamation of Jesus to change people. In Romans 1:16, Paul says, “…the gospel…is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes.”

The Gospel has the power to push competing loves out of our hearts. Our gatherings are designed to remind disciples of the greatness of Jesus, but also to help people consider Jesus for the first time. Invite someone to church this spring.

In 1 Corinthians 15:7, Paul says, “If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins.”

The resurrection of Christ is our guarantee of hope in a world of grief and pain. Our faith is not just a weekend hobby, but it is our reason for getting up every day. Grace changes everything! Let’s spend the next 40 days praying that Jesus will be more evident in our lives as well as in the lives of those around us.

Building Plan Update, February 2016

[From Jim Wilson, Assistant Pastor for Operations]

ruler

We’ve been doing a lot of measuring around here in the past few weeks! Every few days a person with a tape measure shows up and examines a different piece of our building while taking careful measurements.  Plumbers, electricians, steel workers, and civil engineers are just a few of the measurers. The architect completed all of the plans and passed them to the builder, who tells us that we are waiting for the city of Killeen to issue permits.

Suddenly, Tuesday, February 9, materials and machinery appeared! Woohoo—there really is going to be construction!

steel

Step 1: Awnings constructed over the north and south doorways in the breezeway will give us protection from the elements during and after construction.

Step 2: The A/C condensers in the breezeway between the buildings will be moved to the roof of the main building to enhance the breezeway and decrease noise.

Step 3: A double glass door will be installed at the rear of the sanctuary on the east side of the main building.

Steps 4-???:  Construction of the new addition begins on the front of the building.

One Sunday you will arrive for worship and the normal entrances to the building will be blocked. That may be stressful since you will have to use doors on the back side of the building. Please pray with us that our plans to direct the flow of people into the buildings will provide safety and adequate care for our members and visitors. This is an opportunity for us to love outsiders and members as we assist each other in coping with the disruptions of construction.

For more information on the Building Plan, visit begrace.org/building.
For more information about Grace Bible Church, visit begrace.org.

Building Plan Update, December 2015

[From Jim Wilson, Assistant Pastor for Operations]

parking-lot

Progress is hard to see sometimes.  This is not a sinkhole. It is not the first hole on our new putt-putt course. This is progress! In a very small way, we “broke ground” for the new addition to the building when several “core samples” were drilled to verify that we have stable soil for a foundation.

We plan and we meet over and over, but sometimes we just can’t see substantial results.  We recently showed you the plans for our building addition and the artist’s rendering of the addition. We all have hope that construction will start soon and our planning will result in action. We are waiting for the architect, civil engineers, and engineers who make the actual construction drawings to complete their work so the builder can get bids from various contractors and apply for permits to begin construction. Please pray with us that these pre-construction tasks will be completed quickly and that the process will produce visible results soon.

And yes, you can play putt-putt in the parking lot if you wish.

For more information on the Building Plan, visit begrace.org/building.
For more information about Grace Bible Church, visit begrace.org.

Biblical Inerrancy Resources

As we have been walking through the “Truth Shaped” sermon series the last few weeks, Dave has mentioned many different resources for further study on Biblical inerrancy. It can be difficult to remember all the resources he mentions on a Sunday morning, so here they are for you in one place. Enjoy and happy studying!

For more information about Grace Bible Church, visit begrace.org.

3 Ways to Prepare for Easter

Easter is the anniversary of Christ’s resurrection from the dead. This year we will celebrate the Resurrection on Sunday, April 5th, 2015. We usually welcome more visitors on Easter than on any other Sunday throughout the year. Since it’s a special day, we offer an extra service at sunrise and we offer a video overflow room during the other morning services.

We always love to share Jesus with people who don’t know Him, and Easter is our largest opportunity to do that. I’d like our church to be unified in seeking to love our community well. Let’s try these three ways to prepare for Easter at Grace Bible Church.

1) Fast & Pray for 40 Days

Starting today, there are 40 days until Resurrection Sunday. This 40 day period is sometimes called “Lent” (for the “lengthening” of days in the spring). Let’s spend these 40 days praying for others to see and follow Jesus. Fasting is a great way to focus our prayers. Fasting is not to punish ourselves. Fasting is giving something up temporarily to recognize that Jesus is our ultimate joy. If you have never fasted before, I recommend that you start small. You probably shouldn’t give up all food for 40 days. perhaps you could skip one meal per day, or give up a certain type of food. The idea is to turn your heart to Jesus in prayer every time you miss whatever it is you are giving up. Many fast from food, but you might give up TV, coffee, or Facebook. Again, the point is not how uncomfortable you can make yourself, the point is to run to Jesus in prayer. Will you spend the next 40 days fasting and praying for our friends and neighbors to follow Jesus?

2) Invite Your Friends to Church

Invite someone who is not following Jesus to visit church and hear about Him. Our worship services are designed to remind us that Jesus is better than anything else. The Holy Spirit uses the proclamation of Jesus to change people. In Romans 1:16, Paul says,

“…the gospel…is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes.”

The Gospel has the power to push competing loves our of our hearts. Our gatherings are designed to remind disciples of the greatness of Jesus, but also to help people consider Jesus for the first time. Have you invited anyone to church lately? Will you invite someone this spring?

3) Talk About Your Faith in Christ

Pray for an opportunity to talk about Jesus with others. Can you summarize our faith? Jesus offered himself as a substitute for sinners like us. Romans 3:23 and Romans 6:23 show that we are sinners, but God is gracious. He gives us the righteousness of Christ by faith in His work on the cross. Have you ever shared why you have hope? A great way to start is by being a good listener. If we love others well, we will care about what the think and how they see the world. Listen well and share the Gospel.

The resurrection of Christ is our guarantee of hope in a world of grief and pain. Easter reminds us that our faith is not just a weekend hobby, but it is our reason for getting up in the morning. In 1 Corinthians 15:7, Paul says,

“If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins.”

It’s a big deal! Let’s spend the next 40 days praying that Jesus will be more evident in our lives as well as in the lives of those around us.