On Tuesday, April 29th, our staff was nominated by Pastor Edgar Rodriguez of New Hope Church in Moville, IA to take “the plunge”. The challenge was for our team to jump into Prior Lake (38′ at best), participating in a polar plunge. While seemingly crazy…AND IT WAS, the purpose behind the plunge wasn’t crazy in the least.
Through our simple act of jumping into Prior Lake, looking like a bunch of goofs and screaming like some pre-teen girls on a roller coaster ride, we had pledged to raise awareness and money toward cancer research.
As a staff, we are able to both sit back and laugh at how crazy we were/are as well as really consider why we did what we did. It was an amazing experience and worth every bit of what we did if we are able to raise awareness toward the fight over cancer as well as raise financial support in helping research possible cures for this illness that is above any socio-economic barriers, color lines, age, race, country, creed or gender.
This polar plunge experience has inspired creativity in us as a team to come up with other ways in which we can contribute both individually as well as corporately toward doing something in the fight against cancer.
We ask that you join us in praying for and thinking about ways that you might get involved in changing a community affected by cancer one life at a time.
This last week we picked up in our “The Power of One” series and looked at The Power of One Step. Here are a few thoughts that I’d like to revisit from yesterday’s message:
- In order for us to experience the power of one step, our steps must be intentional. (Mt 14:22,23)
Jesus modeled a life and relationship with God that included times of solitude dedicated to prayer. This was never more pronounced than before any major event, happening or event in the life of Jesus or his ministry.Before we make decisions and take steps toward what we feel God might be calling us to, we absolutely MUST make time with God, seeking His face, a priority in order for us to really be intentional about each step we take.
- Fear is the number one reason that people don’t step up or step out in faith. (Mt 14:24-30)
Money, reasoning, opportunities, etc. These are just some of the barriers that stand in our way and keep us from pursuing the God-sized dreams in our life. The reality is that these all pale in comparison to fear. Fear is the biggest setback we often face when it comes to taking our first steps toward anything.
In order for us to be effective in stepping into what God is calling us to, we must both address and choose to overcome our fears.
- As long as our eyes are fixed on Jesus, the impossible becomes possible. (Mt 14:31,32)
Seriously?! Peter walked on water. That’s impossible according to the standards of this world. Yet we serve a God that isn’t confined by the finite thinking of humanity. No! We live for a God who is all about the possible in the impossible.
As long as our eyes are fixed on Jesus and not on the things of this work, anything becomes possible in and through Him!
So here are 3 questions that I think we ought to be wrestling with this week:
- What “mile” (opportunity) is waiting for you to take the first step?
- What storms of life have you allowed to hold you back from stepping out in faith?
- What step do you need to take right now, today, in this moment, to begin the journey that God has in store for you?
“The journey of every mile begins with one step.” There IS power in one step! So go on and step out in faith today!!
Here’s what I’m excited about from this past week…
- An amazing community! It never ceases to amaze me how incredibly welcoming and friendly the people here at Illumination Church are. Just blows my mind!
- IC volunteers are second to none. I am so incredibly blessed by the way the people of our church step up time and again to give of themselves; their time, their experiences, their gifts and more.
- The way the Spirit of God is moving in and through Illumination Church. It’s absolutely outstanding to be a part of what God is doing both in spirit and in breadth.
Here’s what I’m looking forward to this coming week…
- I’m looking forward to this weekend’s message; a message focused on the power of one meal. I can hardly wait to experience communion for the first time in our new Burnsville campus.
- I’m excited to spend time connecting with our volunteers and leaders as we dream of ways to continue to execute our mission and vision within our new community.
- I’m thrilled to spend time reading, processing and praying.
May the grace and the peace of God be evident in your life as you seek the face of God and desire to grow in knowledge, in understanding and in your relationship with Jesus this week!
Yesterday was AWESOME! Seriously, I can’t think of much better than celebrating an empty tomb and a resurrected Christ. What’s more is that I can hardly imagine experiencing this celebration any other place than with Illumination Church.
Here are some of my reflections from yesterday:
- The tomb is EMPTY!
- Jesus is ALIVE!!
- In Him we, too, are made ALIVE!!!
- 7 people responded to the gospel and gave their lives to Jesus!
- 9 people in all responded to commit or recommit their lives to Christ!\
- I’m totally excited about our new, now current series, “The Power of One”
- One choice can change everything! (from yesterday’s message)
- We moved to 2 services: 9 & 10:45
- The band was phenomenal in leading the church to a place of reflection and worship. Never hurts to kick things off with a little Journey, “Don’t Stop Believing”.
- IC has the most incredible volunteers and leaders!
- I’m reminded once again that one of the things that sets IC apart is the people; an amazing community that takes doing life and ministry together to a whole new level.
- Healing. For many, yesterday was a day of healing in many ways.
Here are a few of the things that I’m looking forward to as a church this week:
- The message this weekend, “The Power of One Step!”
- IGNITE kicks off on Sunday night (a practical and hands on look at the Bible) – Sunday night from 6 to 7:30 @ our IC Cafe
- Connecting with and getting to know some of the many new faces and families here at IC.
- Continuing to connect with the community around our new campus in Burnsville
I’m praying that the presence of the Holy Spirit and the power of God in our lives will be evident this week both in word and deed, that people might see Christ in and through us as individuals and as a church.
Until all hear,
In this brief video you’ll come to hear and understand WHYIC matters for you, for me and for our community.