The Rock Weekly – September 6, 2023
- Tonight – Prayer & Worship – 7pm in the Chapel.
- Tonight – Growing in the Word – 6pm in the Prayer Room.
- Sept 8-10 – Ignite Colorado at Bridgeway – Activating Your God-Given Creativity.
No Turning Back
“…But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize of God’s heavenly calling in Christ Jesus.” (Phil 3:13-14)
In this season…the next 24 months, I believe the Lord is leading His Church to a crossroads where believers will need to make a decision whether they are going to be true followers. A decision where there will be no turning back. The question for us is, “Are we really ready to follow Jesus – no matter the cost?” Before we can answer this, we will need to realize that following in the footsteps of Jesus will absolutely cost us something. “For whoever claims to live or abide in Him, must walk as Jesus did.” (1 Jn 2:6) This may come as a surprise (as it is not a popular Sunday message), but we have been called to suffer for righteousness and this is commendable before God. 1 Peter 2:20-21 says “…If you suffer for doing good (righteousness) and you endure it, this is commendable before God. To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you leaving you an example, that you should follow in His footsteps.” I want to clarify that I am not talking about suffering for breaking the law or doing something unwise or senseless. I don’t believe those types of ‘sufferings’ are commendable before God. 😊 I am talking about suffering for righteousness…for following in the footsteps of Jesus as you obey His commands and walk in His ways. Remember that Jesus did suffer greatly for us on this earth. Isaiah 53 tells us, “It was the Lord’s will to crush Him (Jesus) and cause Him to suffer.” And Hebrews 2:10 and Hebrews 5:8-9 tells us that Jesus was made perfect as the author and source of our eternal salvation through suffering. So as we turn our full attention to Jesus and lock our eyes on Him as the author and perfecter of our faith, we will be hated and persecuted by the world. (Jn 15:18,20) This is tough to hear, but I would rather know this now, then find out when it comes.
Often we are taught that once we decide to follow Jesus, our life will be protected, we will be successful, everyone will love us, and we will comfortably live our lives out on this earth. Sadly, that is not what the Bible teaches…although there are verses we can pull out of Scripture that would help us derive this conclusion. The problem with this teaching is that when persecution does come, as promised by Jesus, believers will not know how to respond and this can lead to a falling away from Jesus. The Bible tells us to count it all joy when we face many different kinds of trials, because the testing of our faith develops a persevering faith that is necessary to make us mature and complete (also translated as perfect), without lacking anything. (James 1:2-4) This is part of the preparation of the pure and spotless bride our Lord Jesus is coming back for!
But I don’t want to leave us on that note, because Jesus also tells us that He will never leave us or forsake us! And He has given us His Holy Spirit – the same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead and was in and upon Jesus as He walked on the face of the earth. And so, although we are guaranteed persecution, we are also guaranteed His divine power to give us EVERYTHING we need for this life and to live godly and in righteousness! Our job is to be led by the Spirit – fully surrendered to Him – without turning back!
“I considered my ways and turned my feet to follow and obey Your testimonies.”
Psalm 119:59 AMP
Lord Jesus, We determine in our hearts to follow you – whatever the cost! We will NOT TURN BACK! Help us to set our eyes on you Jesus and walk with you daily. Lead us by your Spirit and may we never grow weary as we walk in Your ways. May we come to the end of our days with the same response as Paul, saying “I am being poured out like a drink offering…I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day!” (2 Tim 4:6-8)
If you have a few minutes, I would love for you to pause and worship the Lord with this song called, No Turning Back by Steffany Gretzinger. Click on the following link… https://music.youtube.com/watch?v=p2PJlKmwNOs&si=bZypEJ65AKjza3rW
I love you and am praying for you!
Pastor Mike and your Rock Staff
IMPORTANT SERVICE & WEEKLY INFORMATION:
YOUTH ~ BASE CAMP (6th – 12th Grade) – WEDNESDAY NIGHT – 7:00pm
Invite a friend and come have a great time. If you have any questions, email firstname.lastname@example.org
EMBER – Young Adults (Ages 18-29) – Friday Nights at 6:30pm
Meet in the Chapel for a time of worship, prayer, teaching, and connection.
FOOD BANK DISTRIBUTION – 1st & 3rd Saturday of the Month
Email Lindy@therock.org if you would like to volunteer or have questions.
SUNDAY MORNING PRE-SERVICE PRAYER 8:15-9:15am – *In-Person & On-line*
ZOOM Direct Video Link:
ZOOM Meeting ID: 853 4016 4797
ZOOM Phone Option +12532158782,,85340164797#
OPPORTUNITIES TO GIVE Here are some ways you can partner with The Rock as you practice generosity – our regular tithe/giving, compassion help, missions, and our food bank. Click on the following link or graphic. www.therock.org/give
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