There is a lot of talk and focus on mental health issues these days, with advertisements and company sponsorships encouraging people to speak up and seek the help they need. We are hearing more stories of deep struggles as people are coming forward to share their experiences. This is backed up by statistics saying that one in five Canadians will suffer with mental health issues in their lifetime. Being a person of faith does not exempt us from the conversation. And it does not exempt us from facing deep challenges in our own lives. What it can do is drive us to the bible to see what God says about things – things like our inner self, our thoughts and emotions. This month we will look to God’s word for comfort and solutions to some of life’s most challenging questions.
Have you ever heard a person in business, in sports, or even in everyday life, describe a situation as a ‘game changer’? It’s something that happens, often unexpectedly, that totally changes the outcome of a situation and causes you to see it in a new light. You could be working on a project and encountering obstacles that seem insurmountable, when someone from outside the team comes up with an idea that gives new hope for a successful resolution. Or it’s a nail biting playoff series and it looks like your favourite team is about to lose, when a player makes a move that gives your team the edge. You may be reading a story and the author introduces a new character that takes the plot in an exciting new direction. The idea of “grace” in the Bible can be like that. Understanding what God means by His free and unmerited favour towards us can have implications that are so profound, that when embraced, it’s a game changer in your life.
Grace Changes Everything is a 12 part teaching series through the book of Galatians. Over the summer, we’ll be walking through this incredible book full of explanations and evidence for God’s grace. We hope that this series will help each of us see and live our lives in a fresh new way.
Over the past few weeks, we’ve been diving into the topic of relationships, looking at what makes them work, and often what causes hardships and heart breaks. We’ve been asking you to submit your questions so that we can try to answer as many as we can in the closing session of our series. So join us for a time of conversation that we hope will be informative, enlightening and maybe even entertaining.
Ask people what they value most in the world and many will put their health near the top of the list. New Year’s resolutions usually include renewed commitments to eat better, exercise more or stop any number of bad habits. At the same time, all we have to do is take a quick look around us, in our families, the workplace and our communities, and we might see any number of people who are struggling with things like anxiety, depression and addictions that affect their quality of life. How do we approach the topic of our mind and body? That’s what we will look at as we conclude our series on Stewardship.
It could be the woman at the daycare centre who helps your child feel comfortable in a new environment. Or a teacher who takes time after class to help you through a difficult chapter of a lesson. Or it’s the friend who offers to babysit your cat while you’re away the weekend on an unexpected business trip. What about the caring relative who brings you chicken soup because she hears you are feeling under the weather? These are people who, in their own way, save the day and make your life better. They give you help in a time of need when you’re at your wits end. You can’t thank them enough and aren’t sure how you can ever pay them back for their kindness. In the book of Ruth, a man by the name of Boaz becomes a rescuer – someone who defends, protects and helps our heroine who could not rescue herself. We’ll look at the eternal significance of having a rescuer who gives his all to make your life better. Join us for part 3 of our 4-part Christmas series.
At one time or another, we’ve all asked a friend or family member for advice. We may have been expecting help in resolving a problem or making a difficult choice. If the conversation was a good one, we walked away feeling confident that the advice was sound and we would be doing the right thing. But what if the advice was completely out of left field – the opposite of anything we would have expected to hear? When Jesus spoke, you almost had to expect the unexpected. “Blessed are the meek.” “Blessed are they who hunger.” Without hearing him out, his declarations just did not make sense. Join us as we look deeper into The Beatitudes – declarations by Jesus that seem so counter-intuitive, yet they describe the world as we long it to be.