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Our Plans Vs. God’s Plans

We will be walking through John 11 & 12 and the story of Martha, Mary, and Lazarus and his resurrection. Looking at the various ways they said yes to Jesus and challenging us to make the coming year a time when we will live to say yes to whatever Jesus is saying.

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Searching for Love. (Ephesians 2:4-9) | FOLLOW THE STAR

All of us have a deep need to be loved. We’re also terrified that we’ll be rejected. For many of us our search for love and our fear of rejection are the driving forces behind the story of our lives. One of the most incredible truths we find in scripture is that there is a God who both loves us fully and knows us completely. The good news for those who are searching for love is that love came searching for all of us.

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Searching for Joy. (Isaiah 9:6, Rev. 21:1-5) | FOLLOW THE STAR

We often go searching for joy and settle for happiness instead. Happiness is a product of the present, it’s a result of my current circumstances. Joy however is rooted in both the past and the future. In order to find lasting joy and not just momentary happiness we have to root ourselves in the faithfulness of God in the past and the certainty of what he has promised to us in the future. We can find joy by reminding ourselves that just as God was faithful in fulfilling his promise to provide a rescuer and redeemer he will also be faithful in fulfilling his promise to one day come again to renew and restore all that sin has broken.

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Searching for Peace. (Luke 3:14, John 14:27; 16:33) | FOLLOW THE STAR

Just the word is like a balm to our restless and weary souls. In a world filled with conflict and constant busyness many of us are desperate to find a little peace. At the birth of Christ, the angels came proclaiming “peace on earth,” and yet the earth seems anything but peaceful. However, just before his death Jesus doubles down on this promise of peace. In John 14:27 and 16:33 he promises that despite the troubles and tribulations of this world there is a peace available to us that transcends our current circumstances, a peace that can calm our fears, answer our anxieties, and steady our souls. A peace that only he can bring.

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Searching for Peace. (Luke 3:14, John 14:27; 16:33) | FOLLOW THE STAR (K)

Just the word is like a balm to our restless and weary souls. In a world filled with conflict and constant busyness many of us are desperate to find a little peace. At the birth of Christ, the angels came proclaiming “peace on earth,” and yet the earth seems anything but peaceful. However, just before his death Jesus doubles down on this promise of peace. In John 14:27 and 16:33 he promises that despite the troubles and tribulations of this world there is a peace available to us that transcends our current circumstances, a peace that can calm our fears, answer our anxieties, and steady our souls. A peace that only he can bring.

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Searching for Hope. (Romans 15:1-13) | FOLLOW THE STAR (K)

Fyodor Dostoyevsky wrote: “To live without hope is to cease to live.” As human beings we need hope, and yet so often what we end up placing our hope in disappoints us and lets us down. In a world filled with politicians, products, and people that don’t live up to the promises they make to us. In a time where the hope of perpetual progress seems to have been dashed; where can we find the hope we need? In Romans 15:1-13 Paul shows us how the hope we’ve been searching for is ultimately found in Christ. In him we can find a hope that will never fail, never disappoint, a can transform our lives and overflow out of us to bring transformation to the world around us.