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A Note from Pastor Bruce

Transformation!

“Hallelujah! Christ is risen! Christ is risen, indeed!” These were the joyful shouts we exclaimed as we celebrated the resurrection of our Lord and experienced the transformational Good News that Christ is risen!


In fact, this Easter, over 800 voices between both campuses and those who participated on-line, heard this wonderful news, and joined together to make such a joyful noise!


In the weeks following the celebration of the resurrection, we invite you to continue to experience the transformational power of the resurrection. Throughout May and June, we will continue our “Transformation!” sermon series. As we move through these weeks, it is our hope that you will experience the transforming power of Jesus Christ in the core areas of your life and grow to love like Christ. As we let God’s word transform us, we’ll base everything we experience on one very powerful verse in the book of Romans, where in 12:2 the Apostle Paul writes, Do not be conformed any longer to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”


I may be a bit biased, but I believe this transformation happens best in the context of worship. You have heard me say, “Worship is central to all we are and all we do at St. Stephen.” It is within the context of worship that we maintain a focus beyond ourselves, recognize our connection to God and to one another (oneness), and are immersed in the proclamation of God’s Word and participation in the sacraments, which enact God’s unfolding story for the world. It is important to note that praise of God is fundamentally “witness.” We do not praise God for God’s personal sake, but for the sake of God’s mission. In praise, we do two things. First, by praising God, we give ourselves to God fully — praise is a way of being in relationship with God. Second, by praising God to others, through praise we give God away to our neighbor. Praise is witness to who God is and what God has done. In praising God, we are transformed into the image of Christ.


Worship is not to be a “weekend task,” but the very foundation of who we are as children of God. In worship God calls us, restores us to wholeness, and sends us out to serve others and the world. Our worship structure follows this action by gathering us together, sharing the Word, feasting on the meal, sending us out in mission, and transforming us to be the church in the world.


Join us this May to experience a transformation in your life! And remember to, “Bring a Friend!”

Our May focus includes:

5/5 Philippians 4:6-7 Emotional Health

5/12 Genesis 3: 6-13 Relational Health

5/19 Acts 2: 1-21 Day of Pentecost

5/26 Luke 12:13-21 Financial Health

6/2 Colossians 3:23-24 Vocational Health

6/9 Philippians 3:12-17 Changed for Good! (Whole Person Well Being)



See You Sunday,

Pastor Bruce

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