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Kingdom Principle: Provision

Blog banner with the image of a highway and the word: "Journey" for the study of the Book of Matthew.

Our series of Kingdom Principles continues this Sunday with a look at Matthew 19:16-30.  A young man, who is financially blessed, comes to Jesus and says, “Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?”  The young man, being happy with Jesus answer, satisfied that he’s done what’s needed, says, “Anything else?” (“What do I still lack?”)  So Jesus gives an additional challenge, “If you want to be perfect, sell everything you have and give it to the poor, and come follow me.”  And the young man goes away sad.

The disciples are a bit alarmed at Jesus answer to this eager rich young man.  Peter says, “Who then can be saved?”

Jesus answer says it all, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

I love this story.  We tend to get lost in the fact that the young man was rich and Jesus told him to sell everything and follow him.  I don’t think any of us have sold everything to follow Jesus.  We react very much like Peter does, “Who then can be saved?”  Exactly.

There is much more going on in this story than Jesus telling a young rich man to sell everything he has.  What do you think it is?  What is it that Jesus is after in this interaction and teaching?  This story fits well into our series on Kingdom Principles.  This Sunday’s principle is Provision.  We have touched on the principles of Humility, Forgiveness, and Grace.  We continue this Sunday with Provision and move on to Desire, Suffering, and Mercy.

See you Sunday,
Pastor Mark

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Kingdom Principles: Grace

Blog banner with the image of a highway and the word: "Journey" for the study of the Book of Matthew.
Kingdom Principles!  That’s what we are about in the next few weeks.  We kicked off the year with Humility.  Sunday past we focused on Forgiveness.  And this Sunday future we take a good look at Grace. We will also focus on Desire, Suffering, and Mercy in the coming weeks.

The Kingdom of Heaven is like…”  Jesus is a master story teller revealing the things of God.  This Sunday we welcome Pastor John Terpstra to Crestview, recently retired pastor from Immanuel Church in Fort Collins, CO, and former Pastor of Crestview Church.  He is bringing a message on Grace from the Parable of the Vineyard and the Workers in Matthew 20:1-16.  There will be some time for reflection on the message in the Gathering Room following the worship service in Download.  God’s grace and forgiveness is the ‘great reversal’ of the Gospel.

The better we understand God’s grace the better we will understand God’s will for our lives.  The more we experience God’s grace the freer we will be.  The more we live in and live out God’s grace the happier we will be.

In Him (that is Christ),

Pastor Mark

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Kingdom Principle of Forgiveness

Blog banner with the image of a highway and the word: "Journey" for the study of the Book of Matthew.

Time to kick off the holiday malaise and put on the running shoes (so to speak.)  It’s time to ‘shred’ it!  Whether its navigating a powdered slope, or working through a Jillian exercise video or cleaning out the closet – lets ‘shred it.’  We are into a new year and into a new Text of the Quarter (TQ!) and a new preaching series.

Our new TQ is from Philippians 4:4-9, “Rejoice in the Lord always!  And will say it, Rejoice!  Let your gentleness be evident to all.  The Lord is near.  Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.  Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.  Whatever you have learned or received from me – put it into practice.  And the God of peace will be with you.”

Our new series will focus on Kingdom of God Principles: Forgiveness, Grace, Provision, Desire, Suffering, and Mercy.  This week we will be bringing the shredder into the worship space.  Shredding will become a spiritual experience – come to find out more.  As we look at forgiveness through the Parable of the Unmerciful Servant, we will take a deep look at the Kingdom Principle of Forgiveness.  Read Matthew 18:21-34.  Jesus tells a powerful story about forgiveness in the Kingdom of God.  Forgiveness is a core cognitive and experiential truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. 

Here it is: The outcome of unforgiveness is unbearable.  Unforgiveness leads to death and pain.  The outcome of forgiveness is amazingly beautiful.  Forgiveness leads to joy and freedom.  Let’s unpack that together on Sunday.

Sunday is a comin’, come out for worship and join in the shredding.

Be free,

Pastor Mark

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The Key To Our Unity

Here we are, at the end of year 2017.  What are you thankful for?  How has God brought you and led you through another year of life?  And what are you looking forward too (hoping for) in 2018?

Sunday, we will have the chance to share these answers with one another in worship and reflect on the past, present, and future.  Everyday God gives us is a gift.  My prayer is for God’s continued leading of us, through Jesus and the power of the Holy Spirit, to be a light for Him in our communities.  Jesus, lead on!

We step away from the Gospel of Matthew for one week to focus on a message from Philippians 2:1-11, one of my favorite passages in all of Scripture.  Its one of those passages that has sunk deep into my heart and I often rehearse in my spirit.  One of my hopes for 2018 is that there would be continued and deepening unity in the body of Christ, his church.  I pray this specifically for Crestview, but also in a grand way for the church throughout America and the World.  Philippians 2:1-11 gives us The Key to our Unity.  As you read the text for Sunday’s coming message, how does Unity come into being?  What and how does it look like?

It has much to do with Jesus and our response to others in the name of Jesus. See you Sunday, get ready – 2018 is coming soon!

Pastor Mark 

 

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Lessons and Carols with Names of Jesus in Isaiah 9

Christmas for the Christian is all about the coming of ChristChrist means ‘Anointed one’ and referred to the promised Messiah in Hebrew Scripture.  I capitalized it because Jesus, referred to as the Christ in scripture deserves it.  As we have seen in our walk through Matthew, Jesus is the anointed one in many, many, many ways – as King, as Lord, as Prophet, as Priest.

With this term comes separation.  What do I mean by that?  Well, a couple of ways.  First, if you google the term Christ you get an interesting definition.  Two explanations of Christ are given: 1st, ‘a title, treated as a name given to Jesus of Nazareth.  2nd, ‘an oath used to express irritation, dismay, or surprise.’  Notice there is no affirmation of Jesus as the Christ and the opposite of Jesus as the Christ as defined by google is to use the term as a curse.  One definition labels Jesus Lord of heaven and earth and all that is in them while the other one is very much derogatory and treats Christ as a curse word, no more worthy than dirt.  This title for Jesus of Nazareth causes separation because it presents us with choice – will it be ‘the Anointed One’ (capital A), or simply a curse word.

Just to be fair, Jesus as the Christ, also unites.  For everyone who believes in his heart and professes with their lips and seeks to follow him with their life, unites us in reconciliation with our Creator Redeemer God and unites us to his created purposes for our life.  So its not all about separation.
  
On Sunday at 4:30pm, we will gather for our Christmas Eve service and worship our anointed Savior Jesus Christ.  And for the Christian, this makes all the difference in living.  We will celebrate with some readings from Scripture and sing many of the carols of Christmas.

Our Scripture focus for the worship service will be from Isaiah 9:6, “Unto us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders.  And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”  If these things describe who Jesus the Christ is, in what ways do you understand these to be true of him?  We can unpack that further together on Christmas Eve.

Come and Worship, Come and Worship, Worship Christ the newborn (anointed) King.”  Come and join the throngs from around the globe in worshipping Jesus, the Christ!

Announcements for the holiday weekend:

  • CHRISTMAS EVE WORSHIP, DEC 24th, 4:30pm!  Don’t miss it.
  • CHRISTMAS DAY EXHALE DEC 25th, at the Quist Home, 5:30-8:00pm.  Mark, Deone, Morgan and Anna invite you to the Quist home for a time of hangout and fellowship after the holiday craziness.  Come one, come all and bring any food you have hanging around the house you’d like to pass on to another.

Peace Out!

Pastor Mark

Pastor Mark Quist and family at Cub Lake in RMNP in winter.

 

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Advent Series: The Gift of Invitation and God’s Grace

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We have been in an Advent anticipation and expectation state of mind for several weeks.  We begin turning the corner Sunday in our worship to celebrating Jesus birth, the incarnation of God in the person of Jesus, God’s Son, our Savior and Lord.We have explored the gifts of Christmas by looking at the gift of Faith (various texts in Matthew), the gift of Transparency (Matthew 17 Jesus transfigured), and the gift of Childlikeness (various passages in Matthew).  This Sunday, we will explore the gift of Invitation and Grace (Matthew 22:1-14 The Parable of the Wedding Banquet).

Jesus tells a parable of sobering truth, ‘Many are invited but few are chosen.’  What does Jesus mean by this?  We will explore this in more depth on Sunday morning.  As you read the text for Sunday, Matthew 22:1-14, wonder about these questions: Who is the King in the parable?  Who is it that receives the invitation to come?  Who are or is the servant(s) sent to give out the invitation?  What do the garments of those at the wedding party represent?  Gonna dive deep into the text on Sunday!

Sunday we will worship with full choir and instruments!  You may even hear the sound of a harp?!  Don’t miss out on the invitation to the party, come Sunday ready to worship our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Unto us a Savior is Born, more than that, He lives!

Pastor Mark


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Advent Series: The Gift of Childlikeness

Blog banner with the image of a highway and the word: "Journey" for the study of the Book of Matthew.

Christmas is coming!  Ready or not?!  How is it going for you in making space in your life for the King?  Just as he came to earth through a miraculous conception through the incarnation, he is continually at the door of our hearts desiring to come in.  “God incarnate here (the human heart personally and our world cosmically) to dwell!”   

God is patient with us in this: He stands at the ready, waiting for our focus and attention to be on Him, His kingdom, and His plan for us.  The mystery of the incarnation of God in Jesus reveals the deep mystery of the holy/human weave.  Certainly the holy/human weave is revealed to us pointedly in Jesus.  But it goes beyond Jesus to us in the reality that Jesus comes to dwell in our hearts through the Holy Spirit.  The holy/human weave continues in God’s working and indwelling of our person.

Are we open to God’s presence and working in our life?  Or are we resisting it?  Again, God is incredibly patient with us and he honors our free will and autonomy in deciding for or against Him.  So what will it be?  Faith or non-faith? (Belief in someone or something greater than ourselves… or not?)  Transparency or non-transparency? (Open our lives to God’s will and plan or hide from it and follow our own?) 

So far in this Advent season we have witnessed the gift of God in faith and transparency.  This Sunday we look at the gift of childlikeness.  Jesus invites us over and over in Matthew to become ‘like a child.’   What does he mean by this?  Here are a few texts in prep for Sunday: Mt 18:1-9, 19:14, 21:14-16, and 9:25.  How does becoming like a child look like?

Can’t wait ’til Sunday!  I’m full of anticipation to worship the King with you!
By the way – come and Carol with us this Sunday on Pearl Street 4:00pm!  Meet us in front of the courthouse between 12th/11th street.  Come one, come all!  

Pastor Mark

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Advent Series: The Gift of Transparency

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Christmas is a time for giving gifts.  I’ve been thinking about some of the best gifts that be given: friendship, love, and presence.  That’s right – presence, not presents.
I’ve been trying to be more intentional with the gift of presence.  In the relational chaos that we are experiencing in our culture and world today, the gift of presence is needed.
The command of God to love one another requires being present.  I’m not talking about being present physically and spatially (that’s important of course), but more importantly seeing and hearing another.
One of the best gifts that God gives to us is his gift of presence, continual presence through the gift of the Holy Spirit.  Experiencing God’s presence with us can be difficult to experience as well because it requires us to be present with God in return.
What will it require for us to be present with God and with others this holiday season?  Slow down.  Be aware of the false narratives that swirl around you wanting to suck you into its vortex.  A popular one is finding your value in busyness and doing more and more things.  Be more intentional to create space and margin to simply be with others and be with God.  After all, we are called human beings not human doings.  So be human and be present with others and with God this holiday season.
Our Advent series continues Sunday with the gifts of Christmas: The Gift of Transparency from Matthew 17:1-13.  Have you ever thought about this, that God made himself transparent to us through the person of Jesus Christ?  Ponder that one for awhile.
Anticipating with you Jesus coming to make all things new,
Pastor Mark
We will be having a congregational meeting immediately following the worship service this Sunday to pass on information on safety education and increased safety measures we are taking as Crestview Leadership.  There will be a time of Q&A to follow.  After our safety meeting, Choir practice will commence!   
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Advent Series: The Gift of Faith

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As we celebrate Thanksgiving this week, we have so much to be thankful for!  Check out this fun you tube video.
God give us a gratitude attitude!  This past week Deone and I were given the gift of time with our girls. I was able to be on the receiving end of a sermon and a great worship experience.  The pastor spoke on gratitude.  As I sat there my head and heart collided with emotion.  Looking down the row, I was overwhelmed by the goodness of God to me in the gift of my wife Deone and our three girls, and blessed with a wonderful son in law.And this is only the beginning of what God has done for me.  His gifts are amazing and abundant from salvation to Dentist’s (needed some emergency attention last week) to friendship to bicycles.  How about you?  What are you thankful for and how is your heart’s gratitude attitude?The level of negativity and angst in our culture is high.  We are going to continue to focus our hearts and eyes on Jesus during this Advent season.  God has given us amazing gifts through Jesus Christ our Lord.  This Sunday, we will focus on the gift of faith (Nov 26).  In the coming weeks we will focus on the gift of transparency (Dec 3), childlikeness (Dec 10), invitation and grace (Dec 17).

Sunday we will focus on the gift of faith.  On our AB line RTD ride to DIA this past week our bus was packed with millennial’s.  College students were fleeing town for family Thanksgiving celebrations.  In the middle of one of our conversations I was asked “How do you define faith?”  I paused before answering… and out came this reply, “Faith is believing in something and someone bigger than yourself.”

On the plane trip to Michigan, a message for this Sunday was written, The Gift of Faith.  We will look at several stories in the Gospel of Matthew (8:5-13, 8:23-27, 9:18-26, 15:21-28, 16:5-12).  In all of these stories faith is directly addressed.  If someone were to ask you the question, “What is faith?”  How would you answer?

See you Sunday, come with an attitude of gratitude, anticipating and expecting to worship and meet with God.

See you Sunday,

Pastor Mark

 

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Guest Speaker: Pastor George Saylor

Blog banner with the image of a highway and the word: "Journey" for the study of the Book of Matthew.

This week we welcome Pastor George Saylor bringing us a message from Matthew 14:13-21 where Jesus feeds the 5,000 (probably more like 15,000).  Its a fascinating story and George will be here to help unpack it for us.  I’ve always found it interesting that when the disciples come to Jesus wondering how all these people are going to be fed, he says to them, “You feed them.”  Now that is a powerful calling he gives to the disciples!  Read the text in preparation for this coming Sunday and you will be ready to dive in.

George and I have recently become friends as we both pastor in the same region of churches from our Classis and we both share a passion for mountain biking.  George and I hit it off on our Men’s Retreat to Moab this past year and have hit some more trails together since then.  We also have some connections together through a ministry organization called the Coalition for Christian Outreach that places campus ministers on college/university campus’s in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and West Virginia.  This was a part of our shared past.

   
Glad to have George here at Crestview!  He currently is pastoring Apex church, a church plant in Littleton, CO.

Deone and I want to wish all of you a happy Thanksgiving.  May the Lord bless us with an attitude of gratitude for what he has done, is doing, and will continue to do in his world and in our lives together.  See you on the other side of Thanksgiving!

See you Sunday,

Pastor Mark