Dear Woodside... Look To Christ

Dear Woodside… 

“Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.” (2 Corinthians 3:17–18, ESV)

Lets be honest with one another — we need to change. Both you and I have many things within our lives, our behaviors, our hearts, our minds, and our attitudes that need change. Today on Oct 1, 2015 we are not fully mature, fully perfect, fully Christ-like people. Each of us wrestles with doubt, discouragement, anxiety, grief, greed, lust, jealousy, pride and a thousand other various shortcomings and sins. We need to change. 

So how will we do it? Some may suggest that we grab hold of the doctrine of “sola-bootstrapa” and exercise a copious amount of discipline and willpower to overcome the sin that so easily entangles us. If we just try harder, figure out the right strategy, engage in the right discipline or have the right accountability partner that change will happen in our behavior and our hearts. Admittedly, to some degree we can change our behavior by picking up and developing new habits. But can we really change our hearts? 

Last night our Missional Communities asked this question, “How do we change?” and then looked at Paul’s clear answer in 2 Corinthians 3:17-18. The answer that the Bible gives is that change comes from the Holy Spirit as we put the eyes of our hearts onto Christ. Paul states that by “beholding the glory of the Lord” we are changed into Christ’s image. 

I want to encourage you to make this the regular means for spiritual growth and maturity in your life! Look to Christ. Try and get clear views of the goodness and magnificent beauty of Christ. As we saw in 1 Peter 2:9 this last Sunday we have a mission to “proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.” To be able to proclaim those excellencies, we must see Christ as excellent. We must see his glory.

I want to encourage you to put your eyes on Christ this week. Through the Scriptures, ask the Holy Spirit to show you the amazing grace of Jesus, his power, mercy, authority, joy, and glory. That is where we will find the deepest and greatest power to change and be transformed from one degree of glory to another. It’s by looking to Christ that we will find that we become like Christ!

This Sunday at Woodside

As we gather to worship this Sunday we will be signing some great songs about Christ’s glory and power. Here’s the song list that you can listen to on Spotify:

  • Found in You
  • Christ Is Enough
  • Presence
  • Your Glory
  • This I Believe 

Dr. Bruce Ware, professor of theology at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, will be preaching this Sunday out of the book of Isaiah. I know it will be a powerful and helpful word for us as a church. 

Reaching Plymouth

One other thing I’d like to encourage you to be apart of is the “Trunk or Treat” event coming up on Oct 24. We’re very excited about serving, blessing, and loving our community. This is going to be a great way to invite and bless the neighborhood with fun games, candy, costumes, food, and other festivities. We could really use your help. You can do this by signing up to have your car available as one of the “treat” sites, hosting a game, bringing candy, and so many other things. We want “all hands on deck” to engage and love one another and our neighbors. Click here to sign up and serve on Oct 24!

We will have a large container for packaged candy in the lobby on Sunday over the next few weeks as well so you can bring in candy all month leading up to the event. 

I hope to be able to write these little letters to you each week to encourage you and connect with you more at the church. I am excited for what God is doing in our midst and how he is moving among us to help people belong to Christ, grow in Christ, and reach the world for Christ. Please don’t hesitate to let me know how I can be praying for and encouraging you! See you Sunday!

In Christ,