Pastor Rene' Bogue
Ecclesiastes 3:1 and 4
For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven…
…a time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance…
It is difficult to describe the soul-touching beauty of the Columbia Gorge. Many of us feel it – particularly when trying to describe Multnomah Falls, the Bridge of the Gods, Oneonta Gorge, and the surrounding areas. As we watched the Eagle Creek fire (I can’t bring myself to capitalize “fire”) take hold and grow, threatening and marring this wonderland, so many in the area described their heartbreak. This is, for many, the heartland of the Northwest.
Some logisticians and scientists among us saw the opportunity for regrowth. One ironic comment reminded us that in just a few hundred years, it would all look like it did…four days ago. There is truth even in this irony. But. All I could think of was Ecclesiastes 3:4, “…a time to mourn…” There is beauty in the mourning, too. There is a cycle of life therein as well. Just as the fires make way for new growth, so the fires of our lives have a purpose, even in the pain. It’s ok to cry over Multnomah Falls. In weeping, or heart rending, we often find our deepest prayers.
The second lesson I take with me from this fire is one that other tragedies have underscored. Just as there is a time to mourn, there is a time to dance, and a time to laugh. So many have posted pictures of their recent trips to the area, all echoing the same sentiment: “I’m so glad I went.” History does not support the fear that all the places we love will burn. But history does support the fact that time will pass. Take the hike, seize the day, use the good china. God delights in our delight, and it pleases Him when we revel in the blessings He’s given us.
He is there in the fire, and He is there in the healing. My prayer for all of us is that we hear and see the blessings He has for us today, and embrace them to the fullest.
Pastor Ron Swor
Dear Church Family,
One of the most exciting aspects of this season is the opportunity to assist people in the act of Water Baptism. It is such an important part of our walk of faith in Jesus. Here’s why:
1. Water baptism is a public declaration of our faith in Jesus Christ as the Savior and Lord of our lives. It is one of the first steps of faith and obedience we should take in our Christian life. In Matthew 28:19-20 Jesus commanded us to . . .
“Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
2. Water baptism is also a dramatic demonstration of the Gospel. When we receive Christ as our personal Savior, the Bible teaches us that we are united with Him in His death, burial, and resurrection. This means that our old life has ended, and our new life as a child of God and disciple of Jesus Christ has begun. 2 Corinthians 5:17 says:
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!”
3. This is why we baptize by immersion. When I lower a Christian into the water, this represents their union with Christ in His death. When I raise them out of the water, this demonstrates their union with Christ in His resurrection to live a new life with Him. As Romans 6:3-4 says:
“All of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death. We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.”
I can’t overstate it. If you haven’t yet been baptized in water, I strongly encourage you to take that step right away. We will be baptizing in water at each of our Easter Services Click here to sign up, then one of our pastors will contact you. Thank you for having the courage and commitment to take that next step in obedience to Jesus Christ.
He is risen!
Pastor Ron Swor
What is God asking you to do? Here’s what the Apostle Paul tells us in Ephesians 4:14-16: Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.
Whatever your assignment might be Paul says, “Do it in love.” That’s our Christ-like character at work in us – and that “each part does its work,” that’s your call, God’s assignment for you.
Here is a report from one of our church plants:
I want to express my sincere appreciation and gratitude for Canby New Life’s prayers and support in 2015. Through the giving of your resources, we have seen Jesus work in an amazing way in our church plant over the past year. We spent seven months in our home building the foundation of our initial church plant community and core team. After we established a solid core, in June, we prayed and heard the Holy Spirit calling us to move into the village of East Aurora. Amazingly, God granted us the opportunity to rent a space located in the heart of East Aurora called the Roycroft campus. Known for being a spiritually dark place and welcoming to the occult, the Lord prevailed by giving us favor with the administration and brought Jesus’ light into a large upper hall on the campus were we meet. Although we share this building with mediums, ghost tours, and pagan ritual meetings, the Lord has given us a heart to love these people and reach the lost.
After the move, we went from a core team of twelve people to a consistent 25 and we are continuing to see growth and new families. As part of our first baptism ceremony, we baptized 12 people who dedicated their life to Christ in the month of August. We also dedicated 4 babies and have seen new believers experience breakthroughs in their faith. We are very excited about what 2016 will bring!!!
Again, thank for all your support to make this possible!!!
Pastor Oliver Newkirk, Chelsey Newkirk and the Guiding Light Foursquare Church Family.
Be bold and build and remember, your service to others may be the answer to someone else’s problem.