Why We are Here

God is on a mission. I know that sounds simplistic but it’s all over the Bible. From the call of Abraham way back in Genesis 12 we find a particular theme at work – God is moving forward in redeeming creation from the tragedy of sin and its effects. God does this because God is good and creates good and promotes good.

Psalm 145:9 (ESV) The LORD is good to all, and his mercy is over all that he has made.

Jesus preached a famous sermon we refer to as “The Sermon on the Mount.” It has a lot of hard things for people to grasp, such as a blessing for the broken and those who mourn. It also challenges our notions of sin by equating lust with physical adultery and anger with physical murder. The root of the problem is our heart, the actions only share what is already within us. But at the heart of that passage is this comment: Matthew 5:16 (ESV) let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.

Paul will echo this statement in Ephesians 2.
Ephesians 2:10 (ESV) For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

Now think back to God’s original commission for Abraham:
Genesis 12:1–3 (ESV) “Go from your country and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you. 2 And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. 3 I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”

God’s mission is to spread God’s goodness throughout nations and all creation. Christ was the ultimate fulfillment of that promise but only the beginning of it’s reality for all nations. In acts 2 the Church Jesus started is filled with the Spirit of God and people from all nations are there to hear and respond. From there and throughout the book of Acts the Gospel crosses cultural barriers and reaches the center of the world – Rome itself. Eventually, the Bible narrative ends with a grand picture of this promise fulfilled before the throne of God:

Revelation 7:9–10 (ESV) After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, 10 and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!”

God is up to something big and something good and we are a part of it. What an honor.

September is coming and it’s time to get back in the routine of our calendars. I want to take this opportunity to challenge you to see your life as a blessing to those around you. God’s mission of spreading His goodness is also the reason why our Church is here.  Last night we had several people feeding the poor in Providence. We have a small group that buys groceries for strangers, we have another that visits prisoners. Wonderful acts of goodness are spreading from Waters Church to our community. But there’s much more in our future!

God’s mission includes you. We want you to be a part of the goodness of God in our community. You can do good by serving in our Children’s program and making disciples of the next generation. You can do good by helping people feel greeted and at home. You can do good by connecting with others in a small group and serving in practical ways to people around you. You can do good by sitting in the front and parking way in the back so newcomers can slip in and out very comfortably for the first time visit.

You are made to do good. It’s in your DNA as a child of God. You’ve come to church – wonderful. Now be the Church - even better!

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Not Fit for Service

Do you ever feel like you’re not “fit” to do something significant for God?

Perfect. That’s the kind of people He tends to use most.

Consider the first person to preach the Gospel. It’s not Peter. It’s not Paul with all his Jewish heritage and great learning. It is not even a man. It is a woman. And it is not Mother Mary. It is Mary Magdalene. This notorious woman is the first person to hear the message of Jesus’ resurrection and then deliver the news to His heartbroken disciples (see John 20:1-18).

Consider the facts. She was a woman and in the first century. This was a time when a woman’s testimony was considered invalid in court. Women were not considered to be reliable witnesses. In most ancient cultures the practice of female infanticide was commonplace. Women were second class citizens. As bad as that sounds, Mary Magdalene was no ordinary woman. She had a horrible past. Luke describes her as, “Mary, called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out” Luke 8:2 (ESV). Seven demons used to be in this girl. Seven! Her condition was that of a mad woman, someone literally out of their mind.

So the first witness to the most important message the world has ever heard was a former insane woman who had literally no social rights or standing in a context in which even “normal” women were considered unworthy of such a responsibility.

And you thought you had excuses?

The point is this. The Gospel breaks the rules of social norm and order. The Gospel levels the playing field to “whosoever will” because the Gospel is not up to you. The Gospel is the power of God (see Romans 1:16). It is the message of a gloriously powerful Savior for a hopelessly wounded race. No one can present to God a reasonable resume, so stop trying. Have a horrible past? You’re not alone. What you don’t have is a good reason to stay quiet about what God has done in your life.

Share the story of Jesus in your life! The world needs to hear. One of the ways we want to help you do this is through baptism. Baptism testimonial videos are the most powerful part of our weekend experiences. We want to hear what God is up to in the individual lives that come to Christ here at Waters Church. Your story and they way you say it matters to someone else and could make a powerful difference in someone’s life. If you haven’t considered getting baptized yet, what’s stopping you? Check out our online forms and take the next step.

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It’s Good to Argue with God Every Now and Then

moses-imagePerhaps the most famous argument between God and a man is found in Exodus 3. Moses and the burning bush has been replayed several times in sermons and movies. It recounts this dramatic and kind of humorous give and take between Creator God and forgotten fugitive.

You know the text, God says “Go tell Pharaoh let my people go.” Moses says “Me?”, “How can I?”, “What if they don’t listen?”, “Who are you?”, “I can’t speak good.” This somewhat hilarious back and forth between the Almighty and Moses is intentionally recorded for our benefit.

Here’s what we learn.

God is okay with our questions. As Moses asks the questions, he gets to know more of God, His power, and His character. Read it for yourself. Every time Moses doubts and fears and turns them into questions TOWARD God, God reveals more of Who He Is to this struggling wanderer.

We aren’t supposed to lose faith in our questions. We’re supposed to deepen in our faith.

Perhaps you’ve got doubts. Is God there? Does God care? We all have these questions from time to time. The real issue is, where are you taking them? Are you taking them to Him? Are you exploring His Word and seeing what He has to say about Himself?

Did you know that Waters Church North Attleboro has created a class specifically for the Questioners among us? It’s called Starting Point. And you can find out more here.

God has no problem with questions. He wants the opportunity to answer. Will you listen? Will you quiet yourself before Him and search out the deep things He has to say?

If Moses had never asked self-doubting, difficult questions, he never would have grown to be the mighty man of God we remember today.

Argue with God every now and then.
You may like what you hear and what you become.

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Pastor – Waters Church – N. Attleboro