Connecting Point – May 31, 2023

Last Saturday a Group from Celebration and I returned from an extended trip to Israel, the "Land of the Bible." During our trip to Israel, we had the opportunity to visit places where Jesus and other Bible heroes walked, served, and won big battles for God's Kingdom. Those places included: 1) Jericho (where God's people conquered a fortified city), 2) The Valley of Elah (where David defeated Goliath), 3) Mount Carmel (where Elijah defeated the false prophets of Baal), 4) Bethlehem and Nazareth (where Jesus was born and then lived for most of His life), 5) the Mountain of Temptation (where Jesus defeated the Devil's temptations), 6) the Cities around the Sea of Galilee (where Jesus performed many miracles), 7) the Garden of Gethsemane (where Jesus surrendered to the prospect of suffering and death), 8) the Via Dolorosa in Jerusalem (where Jesus carried the cross), 9) Skull Hill (where Jesus was crucified to pay the penalty for humankind's sins), 10) the Garden Tomb (where Jesus conquered death and the devil), 11) the Mount of Olives (where Jesus ascended into Heaven, and where He will return one day) and 12) the Valley of Megiddo (where the Battle of Armageddon will be fought).

God's will is not always easy but it's always the best

During those visits to those sacred places, our Group was reminded that: 1) the Lord throughout history has worked mightily in and through the lives of His people, 2) Jesus is indeed God's Son and Humankind's Savior, 3) God's will is not always easy but it's always the best way for people's lives, 4) Jesus was and still is in the miracle-working, life-changing business, 5) Jesus always won His battles with the Devil and devilish people, 6) Jesus is coming back to defeat the Devil, rescue His people, and bring godliness and order to the Universe, and 7) the Lord is still working mightily in and through the lives of His people. Those are wonderful and encouraging revelations to receive that are heightened while visiting the holy places in the Holy Land.

But on Sunday, when I attended a service at Celebration Church, I was reminded of a number of the revelations that I had received while in Israel. As I experienced the welcome of God's people, participated in the uplifting praise and worship, sensed the presence of God's Spirit, heard God's Word preached with authority, and saw people whose lives have been transformed by the Lord's power, I was reminded that:

  • The Lord throughout our Church's history has worked mightily in and through the lives of His people

  • Jesus is indeed God's Son and Humankind's Savior

  • God's will is not always easy but it's always the best way for people's lives

  • Jesus was and still is in the miracle-working, life-changing business

  • Jesus always wins the battles with the Devil and devilish people

  • Jesus is coming back to defeat the Devil, rescue His people, and bring godliness and order to the Universe

  • The Lord is still working mightily in and through the lives of His people.

And the good news is that you, me, and the people that we bring with us to our Church services and ministry can experience all that I experienced in Israel without traveling to the "Land of the Bible." We can experience His truths and His life-changing power by just consistently being a part of what the Lord is doing at Celebration Church.

So my counsel to you is - go to Israel if you ever get a chance to do so because visiting the "Land of the Bible" will have a profound impact on your life. But if you can't go to Israel, enjoy what we have at Celebration - the powerful presence of the Lord and the love of God's people.

By the way, if you're interested in joining me or some of our Pastors on a future trip to Israel, contact me at Dennisw@celebrationchurch.org. We will continue to send Groups to the "Land of the Bible" from time to time so they can walk where Jesus walked and see what He saw.

June 4 is our Level Up Promotion Sunday, when graduating Kindergarten students, graduating 5th graders, and graduating 7th graders move up to the next levels in our Church's Ministry. Promotion Sunday is an important Sunday for the students in your life and in our Church as they "move up" together. They will also experience special activities and blessings by being with us. So be sure to bring your students with you on June 4.

June 11 is ALL IN Baptism Sunday for the Celebration Congregation. From the beginning of Christianity, people have demonstrated they're a follower of Jesus Christ by being baptized (Acts 2:37-41). "Baptize" is a transliteration of the Greek word "baptizo" which means to "immerse under the water." "Baptism by immersion" is the Biblical mode of baptism. So, our Pastors and I are encouraging everyone who hasn't been "baptized by immersion" since they've committed their life to Christ to take that step of discipleship on June 11.

 When a person takes this step they're declaring that they are committed to living for Jesus Christ. Making that strong statement helps us to rise to a new level of faith and strength in our lives. To learn more about "baptism by immersion," check off the appropriate box on your Communication Card, or contact your Life Group Leader or a Campus Staff Member, or go to our Digital Worship Guide at webcc.info and click on the My Decision tab.

By the way, there may be some who have been baptized by immersion in times past who want to take that step again, to demonstrate they have rededicated their lives to loving the Lord and living for Him. You can also sign up to participate in our ALL-IN Baptism Sunday.

This Sunday we will be learning about Navigating The Challenges Of Communication as we continue our current sermon series. Communication is a great challenge for people who are dating, people who are married, people who have Children, people who are members of families, and for people who attend school or are engaged in a vocation. In other words, communication is a challenge for all who are engaged in relationships with other people. So plan to join us this Sunday at Celebration as we continue our NAVIGATING THE CHALLENGES series, and invite some friends and family members to come with you (because you know they need help with Communication as well).

Remember, Jesus Changes Everything.

Gratefully Yours,
  
Pastor Dennis Watson
Lead Pastor, Celebration Church
dennisw@celebrationchurch.org
  dennis.watson.96
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