The Church is Your Family

The church – your local group of believers – will encourage and guide you as you grow spiritually.

Written by GodLife
Series: Look to Jesus
Tags: Church And Community, Family
When you became a follower of Jesus, you were “born again” (John 3:3). Can you imagine being a newborn baby just coming home, and your parents left you alone on the floor, giving you no food, milk, clean diapers, or love? That would be terrible!

The Church — Not a Building, But People
As a physical family makes sure you get fed and loved, the church – your local group of believers – will encourage and guide you as you grow spiritually.

One of the most important things your church does is remind you often of the main points of the gospel:

Jesus Christ died to pay the penalty for your sins and rose again to show His power over death,
Everyone who has by faith received God’s free gift is forgiven of their sins and becomes God’s child,
Jesus lives in each believer today through His Holy Spirit, giving them power to live a God-pleasing life.
The Church is a Team
Not only do YOU need the church, but the church needs YOU! Imagine a soccer team where everyone wanted to be the goalkeeper. How ridiculous to have 11 goalies! God has designed the church with different roles — meaning, the team is not complete without you, and you are lacking without the team.

"But our bodies have many parts, and God has put each part just where he wants it. How strange a body would be if it had only one part! Yes, there are many parts, but only one body" (1 Corinthians 12:18-20).

Don’t Let the Wolves Get You
When a pack of wolves goes hunting, they try to separate young or weak animals from the herd, where they are easily captured and eaten. Satan looks for people to devour, just like wolves do (1 Peter 5:8). By spending time with other believers, you’ll grow strong in your faith. Then, you can resist the devil, and he’ll run away from you (James 4:7).

Look to Jesus
Do you meet with other believers regularly? If not, ask God to help you find a group of strong believers to meet with. He knows how desperately you need to be connected to other followers of Jesus, have a spiritual family and share this message with someone who needs to hear it. If you do not have a church family, ask God to lead you to one or to a Christian in your area.

Visit the Kairos webiste

Is someone talking behind your back?

Karina and Monika were best friends for over 20 years. Since Kindergarten, they stuck together and created and shared wonderful memories. 

Is someone talking behind your back?

The friendship lasted through marriage and divorce and not even when Karina left for Europe for two years did the friendship suffer the tiniest bit. They are best friends and part of a circle of empowering women that meet on a regular basis.

Now the bond is broken. 

Karina heard from one of the new additions to the circle that Monika was talking behind her back. She was so hurt by this betrayal that she could not forgive Monika. 

Cause and Effect of Gossip
The first thing we need to understand is how people connect. We often do not talk about what is really on our minds. Instead of saying: "My marriage is in trouble, and I am afraid my boss hates me," we might say something like: "The terrible weather gave me a migraine again." 

That allows us to communicate that something is on our mind. It also makes it possible to receive the compassion we are longing for. We can connect with someone without alienating ourselves or giving the other one an awkward feeling. The other person has probably problems of his own and can share how bad "the weather" hit them. 

The experiment
When I was about 13, my bestie, Eileen, took me to her home in Ireland for a vacation. We loved to play games. We played two little games:

We went to a park, pointed on our watches and said "You stupid idiot" (in German) to our Irish targets. The people told us the time. After all, we were smiling and pointing to our watches. It was fun until someone who apparently understood German hit Eileen on the head with his newspaper. 

We decided to play it safe for a few days. We replied "terrible, how are you" in the tone of "good, how are you" when someone asked us how we are. Maybe 1 out of 10 reacted and asked: "Why terrible?". The rest did not listen. 

In most everyday situations people do not want to know what is on our mind. Even the least shallow people need to simplify their approach to life sometimes. Can you imagine how much time it would take to shop for groceries if everyone would give a heartfelt reply to the simple question "how are you?".

Talking about the weather is a safe measure of communication that allows the person in need of compassion to receive what they want without scaring others off or giving them an awkward feeling. 

Creating bonds
I am not saying it´s the perfect way to establishing a connection, and I encourage to look for other ways (you will find many on the Aurorasa Coaching blog). But one of the ways people connect is over a shared "enemy" or belief. 

You automatically belong to a group when you put on your ManU shirt before you go to the soccer stadium. Maybe you will form a bond with a stranger when you discuss the incompetent referee. 

Having a common like or dislike are both natural conversation starters. It´s up to us which ones we choose. 

Most of the time when people talk about others the primary intention is to connect with someone. Not to harm the person they speak about. Or it´s just careless and not meant to hurt the topic of the conversation. They do not as much as dislike the person they gossip about.

Still, being the object of gossip is one of the biggest fear of individuals. 

A disser gets snitched out
The "friend" that told Karina that Monika talked about her might not have such an altruistic motive after all. It might create trust if share who is badmouthing you. 

It makes me the "loyal" one. It can help me to find my place in a new circle of people. 

Here´s the thing: A real loyal friend would have stepped up to Monika and told her that they do not appreciate how Monika dishes out.

The snitch girl was new in the circle and still had to proof herself. This is not about evaluating how good or bad a reaction was but understanding its cause. 

Snitch girl enhanced her connection to Karina by "warning" her about her best friend. They could connect via a shared "enemy." Snitch girl has probably no hard feelings against Monika. 

Most of the time when people talk bad about us it is without any evil intent. Hearing about it from a third party can make it seem like a bigger deal than it is. 

Nobody in this example had bad intentions. Karina and Monika have talked things out and what they have learned is that they are grateful that someone showed them that they need to trust each other more. Sadly for the new girl, her attempt to bonding backfired. She fell victim to the fact that friendship is stronger than gossip and that people love treason – but not traitors. 

Karina and Monika re-connected via a "shared enemy". 

Being talked about is a huge fear of people. Hopefully, the questions below can help us to be more relaxed or selective about what we take to heart:

Do I sometimes say something negative about another person? What is my intention when I do so? Does it mean I dislike them? 
Was what someone said about me meant personal? Do I say something similar about others without evil intention?
What is the intention of the person telling me about it? Are they in need of compassion?
What other ways are there to form bonds and create connections?
Could it be that someone is just compensation his own insecurity or dissatisfaction? Or should you maybe invite them to not be scared of you and share their concerns directly with you?
Most of the time gossip is harmless. Only in a tiny number of cases does the person who talks bad about you have the intention of harming you. 

I´d say: Save your energy for the rare occasions that might happen and smile about the rest. 

Most of the times you can learn that someone is in need of empathy, friendship or compassion. I believe we should spread as much positivity as we can. Help those in need of compassion, invite to use empowering forms of bonding and be empathic.

Visit the Kairos webiste

The meaning of Jesus’ name, (“Yeshua” in Hebrew,) is to deliver or rescue. Jesus is our Savior.

Jesus Delivers Us
The meaning of Jesus’ name, (“Yeshua” in Hebrew,) is to deliver or rescue. Jesus is our Savior.

Written by Lois on 06/09/2016
Series: Weekly Devotional
Tags: Rescue, Jesus, Refugee
My eyes are always on the Lord, he rescues me from the traps of my enemies.

Psalm 25:15
Recently, a Bible teacher asked…

“do you want Jesus to deliver you out of the place that brings you suffering?” Sometimes a broken heart, financial trouble or addiction keeps us away from God. Only the grace of Jesus can make us whole in every situation and carries us through it.

When King David cried out to God in Psalm 25:16-18, he said, “Turn to me and have mercy, for I am alone and in deep distress. My problems go from bad to worse. Oh, save me from them all! Feel my pain and see my trouble. Forgive all my sins.”

With King David’s prayer in mind, let’s explore how God has the power to set us free from from our troubles and how to look to Jesus to deliver us:

First, How Can You Be Delivered?
Listen to the words of Jesus, “I tell you the truth; those who listen to my message and believe in God who sent me have eternal life. They will never be condemned for their sins, but they have already passed from death into life.” (John 5:24)

In this world, suffering is unavoidable. But the next world will be free from it. Getting to know the Son of God personally and accepting His gift of eternal life is the way to gain Heaven: His deliverance from all worldly suffering.

Know that Faith is what brings Deliverance.
Have faith that the Son of God, Yeshua, can set you free. Hebrews 11:6 tells us, “… it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to Him must believe that God exists and that He rewards those who sincerely seek Him.” Believe in Him in your heart.

Know Jesus’ Desire for You to be Delivered and Whole.
True faith asks, believing Jesus is willing, but understanding He may have better plans.

The leper in Matthew 8:1-3 believed in Christ's ability but humbly asked for healing: “Large crowds followed Jesus as he came down the mountainside. Suddenly, a man with leprosy approached him and knelt before him. “Lord,” the man said, “if you are willing, you can heal me and make me clean.” Jesus reached out and touched him. “I am willing,” he said. “Be healed!” And instantly the leprosy disappeared.”

The Apostle Paul also asked for healing, but discovered that it was more important for him to trust in Christ's sufficiency than to experience physical healing. (2 Corinthians 12:7-10)

Ask yourself … how great is your burden?
Do you feel like you’ve done too much or have gone through too much in your life to be delivered? You’re not alone.

With Christ, there is peace that supasses all of our temporary troubles here on earth. This peace comes from knowing that we can only find victory in Jesus. So, “Today when you hear his voice, don’t harden your hearts.” (Hebrews 3:7) Because he has overcome the world, bringing us everlasting hope, no struggle can keep us from it. “For God says, “At just the right time, I hear you. On the day of Salvation, I helped you.”( 2 Corinthians 6:2).

It doesn’t matter how great the burden you carry.

Jesus is greater.

Pray this week:

Father, “turn to me and have mercy, for I am alone and in deep distress. My problems go from bad to worse.” Help me. In Jesus’ Name, amen.

Visit the Kairos webiste