Heros vs. Villians -by Missy

Picture1I was driving in the car by myself just yesterday and in that quiet time I thought to myself that the core to all sin comes down to selfishness.  Deciding we want to do something to gratify or make ourselves happy in the moment.  Sometimes it can be a harmless decision and sometimes in our selfishness we don’t see or don’t want to see that it is hurting those closest to us.

Then I thought that’s what makes the difference between a hero and a villain.  The hero is someone who has dedicated themselves to help others; in the end they are the least selfish person, willing to give up their own wants and desires to help others achieve theirs.  The villain on the other hand is living for themselves usually seeking money or power; ultimately living for themselves and willing to sacrifice the relationship with those around them to get those things.

We are all born with the desire to fulfill our needs and desires.  To strive after those dreams in our hearts and usually they are good things.  Yet it’s always good to seek out God and to double check our motives that what we are wanting is ultimately in His plans.  We all have to continually fight the desire to put down our flesh and its desires and look outside ourselves to help and make other lives better as well.  If there’s any verse that shows the difference between a villain and a hero, it’s Philippians 2:3 (MSG.)

“If you’ve gotten anything at all out of following Christ, if his love has made any difference in your life, if being in a community of the Spirit means anything to you, if you have a heart, if you care— then do me a favor: Agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends. Don’t push your way to the front; don’t sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don’t be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand.”

Missy

Walk This Way -by Danny

WTW_LogoIt’s that time again. CAMP TIME! Next month, we have our Journey Youth camp and Journey Kids camp. First of all, if you are of age and our not registered for these experiences you are truly missing out. I am lucky enough to get to be a part of both. Today though I will focus on the latter, Journey Kids Camp.

We will be using the next two months of Sundays to set up what I think will be a fantastic experience for our children and volunteers. Last year was my very first kids camp and it was a great personal experience. This year we will be using the same format, so anyone who volunteered last year will have a great heads up on how this year will be ran.

This year, starting this month, we are focusing on faith and this theme will extend into July all the way to our camp July 25-29. Walk This Way will explore the life of the Apostle Paul; when he encountered Christ and his ministry. We have some awesome crafts and games to help illustrate the truths of what kind of impact faith in God can have on someone’s life. Not to mention our live drama team, video teachings, and worship.

I encourage you to get your children to this camp. I also encourage you to volunteer. I know kids ministry and especially kids and youth camps have a bad rep, but I will reiterate what I said before: if you are missing these two ministries in your life you are truly missing out. You can register for Walk This Way at journeychurchmo.com.  If you have any question about kids camp don’t hesitate to hit me up on Facebook or email or whatever. If you cannot be a part of our camps please join us in prayer that lives our impacted, futures are changed, and dreams are born.

Danny

Friend Danny on Facebook or follow him on twitter and instagram @00brooksy
Follow Journey Church on Twitter @Journey_MO

What A Catch -by Tim

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You probably thought I was talking about the fish. Nope, that’s my wife and she is the best catch I’ve ever reeled in.

I just wanted to take a moment and tell you all how much my life has changed in the last year; and let me tell you it has changed! Around this time last year, I made a drive that would change my life. I headed down to Nashville, Tennessee where I met my amazing wife who is in the picture holding another kind of great catch.

You know, I prayed for her to come into my life for years. The things she does amaze me. Why you ask? Well let me tell you. It is not too often you find a gal that wants to go fishing as much as you do; even when she is five and a half months pregnant.

God has really blessed me with an amazing wife and a baby on the way all within a years’ time. I guess, really, that this is a reflection blog of just how awesome God is and what He has done in my life.

I want to encourage you to never stop talking with God about what your heart desires because He hears you and will deliver in due time.

God Bless

Tim

Friend Tim on Facebook or follow him on twitter @timoverstreet1
Follow Journey Church on Twitter @Journey_MO

Real Talk -by Angel

040416_ls_lipreading_freeHave you ever said something to someone in passing and then find out later you offended that person? Have you had someone say something to you, that was not intended to be hurtful, however you walk away with your feelings hurt? How many times have you had a conversation with someone and when they bring it up later, you do not even remember the words you spoke?

I have spent some time reflecting on these points. I have taken the critique of those I trust on my communication skills to heart. I have looked up verses on what God commands of my speaking; there are tons of bible verses on how we should speak.

Speaking comes in many forms: verbal, email, text, and social media.  Many of us have heard how texting is great way to misinterpret what the other person is trying to say. Another great quote I have read is ‘We listen to reply, not to understand.’

What does all this have to do with anything? Simply that I want to encourage you to take a moment to reflect on your speech (in all forms). Are you representing God in your daily speech? Are you being kind with your words?  I promise you that words hurt and last longer than any bruise that can be seen.

Today, as I continue to reflect on how I speak to and with others I am reminded of what I strive for: I want my speech to always be gracious and seasoned with salt, so that I know how to answer each person the way that best reflects how God would answer. I only want to speak positively and honestly with a gentleness that lets others know my heart.

I hope your day is amazing and your words are kind, helpful and true!

Angel

Friend Angel on Facebook or follow her on twitter @AngelLayher
Follow Journey Church on Twitter @Journey_MO

Growing Like Weeds by-Morio

image1Growing like weeds. I can’t tell you how many times I heard that phrase growing up. It seemed like the popular thing to say among the people who hadn’t seen you in a while. They were usually referring to the three feet and facial hair you had grown over the 10 years since they’d last seen you. Recently, I found myself using the same terminology when I talked to others about their kids and now even say it about my own.

I can humbly admit that I never fully grasped the meaning of the phrase until we planted our garden this year. We usually do raised gardens, which minimizes the weeding process. But, we figured we would take it to “A Whole Nutha Level” this year, and go big. It’s only been three weeks and I can already tell I’m in way over my head. Now don’t get me wrong, we are seeing some amazing growth in the seeds and seedlings that we planted, but the weeds seem to be growing at an accelerated rate.

As I was thinking about this, I couldn’t help but notice how much this relates to my life as well. God has planted some amazing things in my life. These things will produce good fruit with the right amount of water and Son. On the other hand, I have this flesh. Which, being born into sin, has a natural tendency to produce the weeds that are native to its soil. If left unattended, the weeds can get out of hand and become unmanageable very quickly. Before you know it, the weeds have overtaken and become the focus of the garden instead of the plants the garden was intended for. So just like that garden, we have to take action quickly against the weeds that pop up in our lives so that we can focus on our intended purpose.

Remember when in the beginning I was talking about those kids of mine growing like weeds? Well, they actually taught me another lesson in all of this! It’s a whole lot easier weeding a garden when you have help! So don’t neglect the resources God has placed in your life to help you along the way.

Morio

Friend Morio on Facebook or follow him on twitter @thaConsciousOne
Follow Journey Church on Twitter @Journey_MO

Thoughts In My Head by-Missy

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I woke up this morning and walked into the living room as Jesse and our sons’, Micah and Javan, were getting ready to walk out the door to head for breakfast at McDonalds to celebrate the last day of school.  Micah’s face looked grave as he gave me a good morning wave; he had thoughts of four finals to tackle before he could enjoy his summer.  Javan on the other hand is not yet in High School so he was in full on celebration mode.  He had packed a large Ziploc bag full of sandwiches and another grocery bag full of fruit snacks that he planned to share with friends at school.  Saying with a big smile on his face “I’m gonna eat like a king.”

Then once they were out the door the house was again peaceful. I began to reflect on this past Sunday’s service where God took us in a different direction than was planned.  My thoughts rang with the words Jesse used to challenge us.  The main theme was to give God our willingness.  That challenge stirred in me the desire to continue to push forward, to again lay down anything that would keep me from going after God, and to show me that there are great things ahead for us to do as the church.

Even with all these great things going on I had to check myself as I thought back to yesterday. I had found myself having a really bad attitude.  I was being short tempered with my husband, who didn’t deserve it.  I was getting mad over silly things, walking around doing chores and cooking with a chip on my shoulder.  I realized last night before I went to bed that I didn’t even really have a reason to be upset and I was dampening everyone’s positive atmosphere with my grumpiness.  I saw just how easily and fast I can turn good things into something ugly if I am not keeping my mind on God and enjoying the great times with my family.

In my quiet time today I read in Proverbs chapter 2 that “Good sense will scout ahead for danger, insight will keep you from making wrong turns, or following the bad directions.”  I am so thankful that as I keep close to God, He will make sure to show me when I make a bad decision or a wrong turn. I thought that if I didn’t have that soft heart because of my connection or that time to spend with Him, how would He be able to show me this?

Those are my thoughts!

Missy