Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Greetings in the Lord!
It was great to have pastor Chuck back in the pulpit after his time away on sabbatical and vacation! So far in our sermon series on the five solas, we have looked at Scripture alone and Christ alone. Last Sunday Chuck preached sola gratia, grace alone.
Looking at Ephesians 2:1-10 we considered the sobering truth that, left to themselves, all human beings are dead in their sins and enslaved by their destructive desires. We are hopeless and helpless apart from the gloriously good news of verse 4: But God. But God, being rich in mercy has made us alive in Christ. This life in Christ cannot be achieved by any of our own efforts. Rather, “By grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God…” (v. 8). This grace is God’s undeserved favor that has supernaturally united us to the person of Christ. We have died with him and now live and reign with him, and we continue to do so each day by grace. Church, do our lives reflect this costly grace? Are there areas in our hearts that are harboring a cheap and counterfeit grace? May we repent and walk in the new life that Christ has given us!
During the sermon last Sunday, Pastor Chuck shared about his recent diagnosis of lupus. Chuck has expressed his peace in God, and has every intention of continuing to serve this body for decades by God’s all-sufficient grace. Please be in prayer for Chuck and his family as they process this new reality. Don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions you may have or help you may provide.
One week from this Sunday brings us to our long anticipated 2 Gatherings launch (Aug 6th)! The two gatherings will begin at 9:30 and 11:15 am, with connection classes offered during both times (see below for more info). Consider bringing a friend, and be on the look out for new visitors. We have a message of life that desperately needs to be heard, and we are a people with the most reason to rejoice and to love—let these realities impact even the way you greet a stranger!
In connection with this, our Director of College Ministry, Maddie Pinto, has this to say:
“College students from all over the world will be flooding Tempe next month when ASU kicks off its fall semester. August is a time when students are more open than ever to the gospel, and it is normal for students – especially freshman and international students – to visit us during this time. Our church is uniquely located next to a major university, giving us a strategic opportunity to invest in the next generation. Keep your eyes open for young people this next month, and consider in what ways you can welcome, encourage, and serve these guests, being models of the gospel in their lives.”
New Connection Classes
Our August 6th launch date for 2 Gatherings will also mark the start of two new connection classes. Here’s what you need to know:
1. How to Grow will be offered during the second service (starting at 11:15 am). Join Kent Hardy as he takes us through some of the spiritual disciplines so vital in spiritual growth.
2. Knowing God will be offered during the first service (starting at 9:30 am). Join Randy Hagler in taking a look at what the Bible says God is like, that we may better marvel at His glory.
If you were planning to attend first gathering but are worried about missing the connection class offered during that time (or vice-versa), fear not! The connection classes are scheduled on a rotating system so that, if you consistently attend the same service, you will be able to participate in every connection class that is offered.
All Christians are disciples who make disciples. Want to learn how? Join us August 9th from 6:30 – 8 pm for Disciplemaker’s Fall Kick-off Night! Come ask questions and learn about what we will be studying this semester. Click here for more info.