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Love Must Be Demonstrated

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Love Must Be Demonstrated

Love must be authentic, it must be communicated, and love must be demonstrated. We are continuing our blog series, Christmas through the Eyes of John. This is the third of the three things John says about love that will make all the difference.

John didn’t focus on the events and happenings of the Christmas story. He focused on the reason why. Why did Jesus come?

The simple answer is, God loved … God sent. God loved the world and God communicated that love and ultimately demonstrated it.

You can almost hear John 3:16 from this passage: “God has shown us his love by sending his only Son into the world so that we could have life through him,” (1 John 4:9 GW).

What was the action that God took to communicate His love?

He sent His ONLY Son “This is love: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the payment for our sins. Dear friends, if this is the way God loved us, we must also love each other,” (1 John 4:10-11 GW).

God loved … God sent. God demonstrated His love.

Through our Christmas offerings we have opportunity to demonstrate our love for 58 families. That’s helping more families than we have ever done before.

Once again John captures the Spirit of Christmas. The greatest demonstration of love the world has ever seen is in 1 John 3:16. “We understand what love is when we realize that Christ gave his life for us. That means we must give our lives for other believers,” (GW).

Sometimes we lay down our lives simply by opening up our wallets and laying down our money.

“We understand what love is when we realize that Christ gave his life for us. That means we must give our lives for other believers. Now, suppose a person has enough to live on and notices another believer in need. How can God’s love be in that person if he doesn’t bother to help the other believer? Dear children, we must show love through actions that are sincere, not through empty words,” (1 John 3:16-19 GW).

We’ve asked all who call Lakeview home to give a special offering for Christmas. This offering is over and above our tithes. Tithes belong to the storehouse to ensure this work continues strong day in and day out. We are asking you to do two things: 1) Pray about your part, and 2) Give your Christmas offering as the Lord leads.

If you’d like to make a Christmas gift offering, you can make a donation online here. 

You can watch the complete message on video or listen to the audio here. 

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“Be Careful What You Ask For”

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“Be Careful What You Ask For”

On my day off, I went fishing with Anthony Patterson. Four years ago, he came to Indianapolis. As he told me about all the prayers God answered during the past four years in his life, Anthony got more and more excited.

  • He found God his very first day in Indianapolis at one of our Life Groups.
  • He also found his wife Katrina.
  • God gave them a beautiful baby daughter.
  • He graduated from Pike High School with his GED at age 30 and was the featured graduation speaker. (I was there. It was awesome!)
  • He went on to graduate from Ivy Tech.
  • And now he has been given a full ride scholarship college and wants to go into public education so he can help inner city kids believe that with God all things are possible!

Anthony said, “You know Pastor, everything I have prayed for during these last four years, God has given me. It actually got to the place where my wife said, be careful what you ask for. God really answers your prayers!”

God is a giving God!

King David also wrote in Psalm 37:

  • Verse 4, “Take delight in the LORD, and He will give you your heart’s desires.”
  • Verse 5, “Commit everything you do to the LORD. Trust Him, and He will help you.”
  • Verse 17, “The LORD takes care of the godly.”
  • Verse 25, “Once I was young, and now I am old. Yet I have never seen the godly abandoned or their children begging for bread.”
  • Verse 34, “Put your hope in the LORD. Travel steadily along His path. He will honor you by giving you the land.”

God wants to give to you and provide for you. What are you asking him for today?

Listen to the entire message on Lakeview’s podcast. http://www.lakeviewchurch.org/2016/10/09/living-the-jesus-perspective-provision/

 

Tithing—a Powerful, Spiritual Force in Our World

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Tithing—a Powerful, Spiritual Force in Our World

Tithing isn’t something we do to just support a local church, and we kind of hobble along year after year trying to keep the doors open. When we get a tired view of tithing, God brings us back to the big picture. “You have said, ‘It’s pointless to serve God. What do we gain if we meet his standards or if we walk around feeling sorry for what we’ve done?”[1]

What will keep us motivated in our tithing is to keep our focus on the big picture.

My tithe will help spread the gospel.[2] Every day, all over the world, billions of people bow down to false gods—god’s who cannot hear, gods who cannot see, who cannot deliver them. You and I serve the true and living God—a God who has revealed Himself through His Son, Jesus. We have the hope of the world.

When we tithe, we are directly involved in spreading the gospel, the good news. And that is why God cares about our tithes, and His eyes are focused on our offerings!

God always keeps the big picture in mind. He sees the salvation of the nations as directly connected to our tithes and offerings. When you tithe, never separate it from the mission. See your tithe for what it is, a spiritual force in our world.

What would happen if every Christian in the world began to tithe? It would be amazing!

 

[1] Malachi 1:14 GW

[2] Malachi 1:11

What’s Your Motivation?

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What’s Your Motivation?

Most of the time it’s our gifts and passions that move us into action. But other times it’s the season of life that energizes and drives us to help others.

In October of 2014, Suzie’s husband, Steve died. It was a very difficult season or her. As she walked through the grieving process, Suzie read a book by Max Lucado entitled, “You’ll Get Through This.”

It occurred to her that this book would help others too. So she went to our website and signed up to lead a Life Group Class, and had more than 20 people join her, so they could connect and grow together.

After the first two weeks she wrote: “I had many hurting people come. One woman lost her fiancé on Thanksgiving Day, and another man lost his wife on Christmas Day. One woman’s husband suffers from PTSD; another had just lost her mother. God is in this! I’m also inviting people outside of the church. I love Lakeview Church and am grateful for the opportunity to connect and serve. Thanks for encouraging me to step out of the boat.”

There are many different ways to express your gifts here at Lakeview:

  • Lead a Life Group.
  • Volunteer in the nursery.
  • Join the children’s ministry team.
  • Serve as a deacon or an elder.
  • Help clean the church weekly – it’s our house; family helps!
  • Join the mowing crew and snow removal team.
  • Commit to vacuuming the carpet.
  • Find a family in need and adopt them.
  • Join the worship team.
  • Be a greeter.
  • Serve as an usher.

 

Stories of Impact—Freedom from Chemical Dependency

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Stories of Impact—Freedom from Chemical Dependency

“e careful, then, how you listen; because those who have something will be given more, but whoever has nothing will have taken away from them even the little they think they have.”

Luke 8:18 GW

—a Lakeview Family Member shares her story:

I’ve been attending Lakeview for 10 years. When I started attending I was well on my way to the world of addiction in alcohol. Never in a million years would I have ever thought alcohol would control my life. When someone said they were an alcoholic and couldn’t quit, I didn’t understand it. It sounded simple to me. Just STOP! But the enemy has power over our minds and he uses many things that seem to be pleasurable and innocent in the beginning before he buries us in our own self destruction.  

Over a 15-year period of time my drinking continued to escalate, and I knew I was in trouble. One morning I sat in my bed in deep despair and said out loud, “I can’t quit. I CAN’T QUIT. LORD YOU HAVE TO DO THIS FOR ME.”

On January 20, 2016, I celebrated two years of sobriety thanks to God and some very faithful, loving, loyal, praying Christian friends. And here’s the funny thing. Even people who hugged and smiled at me on Sundays when I was so desperate, made a big difference for me. I’m sure they were completely unaware of their impact, but it touched my heart and changed my life!

~Kathy

 

Kathy is now team teaching a class: Addictions B4 and Beyond

Our greatest source of impact is outside the walls of the church. May God light a fire in your soul. May you find your place of impact.

The Gift of Giving Produces Growth

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The Gift of Giving Produces Growth

So those of us who have a strong faith must be patient with the weaknesses of those whose faith is not so strong. We must not think only of ourselves. We should all be concerned about our neighbor and the good things that will build his faith (Romans 15:1-2 GW).

One of the young men new to Lakeview just moved to the United States. He’s a new believer, growing in Christ. He needed transportation and contacted me for advice as to where to go and what to do about purchasing a car for his family. I asked him to give me a few days.

I went to Facebook and shared his need for a car on my page. A few days later, a couple contacted me. They said they had been praying for three weeks, asking the Lord what He wanted them to do with a car they no longer needed. They told the Lord, “We want to give this car to someone who has a need. When I shared this young man’s need for a car, they recognized answered prayer and that the Lord wanted them to give him their car.

It was a really nice vehicle. This young man was so overwhelmed by the love of God and the generosity of his fellow believers, he could hardly could speak.

This gift encouraged this young man in his faith, as well as the couple who gave the gift.

The young man told me, “When I get established, I want to help someone else like these people have helped me.

You are a part of the family of God. Everyone does their part to see one another succeed. We are growing together and giving God the glory.

 

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