Middle School Recap - Last night our youth room was filled once again! We had 19 middle school students - 4 from IOM, 13 from KOG and 2 friends. We also had two of our seniors come and lead the opening as well as spend time with our middle school students!
This week, we kicked off our new series called Flipped. The hope of this series is to take a view many people have of God and Flip our understanding through the way that Jesus interacted with people in the Gospels! Last night, we started with the story of Zacchaeus.
Often times, we don't feel like we measure up to what we need to be. To go along with this, a common thought we have is that we need to be good in order to be accepted by God. The problem with thinking this way, is that our relationship with God completely relies upon us and our actions when we hold this view point. This can lead to a fearful, frustrating and exhausting life. However, as we see Jesus' interaction with Zacchaeus we see that God wants to meet us where we are - He wants to love us and He wants to have a relationship with us.
Even while Zacchaeus was a crooked tax collector who had stolen from the people around him to become rich, Jesus' first interaction with him was not one of judgement or correction. Instead, Jesus called him out of the tree and asked to hang out with Zacchaeus. The peoples response showed how strange this was. They mumbled and questioned Jesus. However, Zacchaeus' response is one that had been changed. He came down and declared his repentance. Giving half of what he had to the poor and promising to give back fourfold what he had taken. This is a man who is completely changed by the love of Jesus.
As we continue to grow and learn of God's love for us, we hope that our lives too would be changed. That instead of working to be good in order to be accepted, we can know that we are accepted. Our actions do not earn God's love, rather, they reflect the love that God has for us!!
High School Recap -
We continued in our 1 Peter study, focusing on chapter 2:1-12. Our main theme this week was forming an appetite for doing good. Again, this is not to gain acceptance from God, but rather an outflow of who God is in our lives! With this theme, we discussed three points or ways that we can be intentional about growing in our desire to obey God. First, we need to be constantly diving into scripture - God's Word! Through the scripture we begin to see the hope, joy, love and wisdom that God has for us! We see the way God loves us and it results in a change and desire to have an outflow of that same love for others.
Secondly, we talked about declaring God's praise in two ways! The first is by telling God. No, He does not need us to remind Him that He is perfect, holy and just; but it does influence and shape our relationship with God! The second way is to declare God's praise to others! Not trying to sell God or tell people they need God in their lives; but declaring the work that He has done in our own lives!!
Finally we talked about associating with God's people. Finding that core group of friends or mentors who will be there to walk with you in this journey of faith. Through relationship with other Christians, our principles and obedience becomes easier as we work together and not alone!
If you have any questions or if you would like more information about our student ministries here at King of Glory, please feel free to contact me with information below.