3 Reasons Why You Can't Miss LEGACY SUNDAY

A few years back, we created Legacy Sunday as a can't-miss event for anyone who has ever been part of Christ Community. Here are three reasons why you don't want to miss being part of this year's Legacy Sunday on September 11th:

First, because you are part of Christ Community. Dietrich Bonhoeffer once wrote, 'Christian community is not an ideal we have to realize, but rather a reality created by God in Christ in which we may participate.' If you have ever been part of our church, you are always part of our church. Legacy Sunday exists as a reminder of a reality in which we are privileged to participate; gathering together to worship as a rehearsal for the day when every tribe, tongue and people group from every generation will come together to worship Jesus.

Second, because you were made to leave a legacy. Most of the men and women who are part of Christ Community live in Athens for just a few years. My message at the Legacy Sunday gathering from Genesis 1:31 will lay out a plan for making a difference both now and for years to come that will make Jesus impossible to ignore here in Athens and beyond.

Third, because you're going to make memories. Whether you are new to the church, or you are coming back into town for the day, Legacy Sunday will be hard to forget. This will be the first Legacy Sunday in the 890 Boulevard building, and we have a great lunch planned afterward at Terrapin Brewery. You will not want to see pictures and video from the event and wish you had taken the time to be with us.

So let's make this simple. Decide right now that you are going to be part of Legacy Sunday on Sept. 11, and let us know that you are coming so we can have enough food for everyone. 

- Matt Adair, Lead Pastor Christ Community Church

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Life in the AD (After Degree)

Life in the AD (After Degree)

One of the things I have always loved about our church is that so many people come in for a season and are sent out to impact the world . For over half of the year, 35,000 young adults rub elbows on a campus a little larger than a square mile. Like an airport, its inhabitants are heading to their own destinations. Yet here we are, spending several years in our own terminal and now we are boarding our flight into the “real world”. We see people grow in their faith, share the Gospel with others, and love people well.

But what happens after college? Where will I live? What will my job be? With whom will I surround myself?

These are all questions I asked myself as my time at the University of Georgia was winding down. Sometimes it seems there isn’t much decision-making remaining for yourself. You fall into a job and…well, you just take it! I’m not here to make you second-guess the job you already took. If you took one, then congratulations on securing your first position after college! But, let’s figure out how to set you up for success when you get there.

First, do you know people where you are going who love Jesus and want other people to know His love?

If yes, then go ahead and reach out to them. They will be a great resource! Ask them if they know of a good Gospel-centered church in the area and a community group around your stage of life. You don’t need to church hop every weekend. Find your fit, set your stance, plant your feet, and dig your cleats in. It’s game time.

Don’t get me wrong. I don’t mean to stick around a place that isn’t preaching the Gospel, but doing some research will help in the process. Go ahead and reach out to the churches and tell them you’re moving there and looking to get connected with a gospel community. They want to help you follow Jesus and love people well so let them do that. You'll want help in the process.

Life after college is…an adventure. You may be worried about losing your Christian community, but instead of worrying, think of this next stage as an opportunity to dive and conquer and share The Gospel with even more people. Set yourself up with people who point you to Jesus, preach the Gospel to you, point out evidences of God’s grace in your life and around you, and ask you the tough questions. Press into things and have conversations with people beyond the limits of school and work. School and work will inevitably be a topic of conversation, but don’t stop there.

Get to know your new friends, for they will become your family. Spend time with them. Listen. Ask questions. Eat with them—you may want to venture outside your college staple Ramen, Pop-Tarts, and Yoo-hoo.

So, how do you set yourself up to grow in your faith as you take your next step in adulting? Put yourself out there to intentionally get to know fellow Christians. Commit to membership in a Gospel-centered, missional church. Participate in a regular worship gathering (with a consistent group of believers). Engage in regular spiritual conversations consulting the Bible as the ultimate truth, and look to share the Gospel with those who God has brought into your life.

Let’s look to create rhythms in our lives that set us up to reflect on God’s Holiness, our sinfulness, and God’s incredible love shown to us in the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Happy adulting.

“Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever, Amen.”

-- Ephesians 3:20-21

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I Am Free From "Enough"

“You’re not good enough.” 

This is what Satan has whispered to me throughout my life. Even though I became a Christian at an early age, I still believed that grace wasn’t enough for me. I can still go into what I call “failure" mode - if a few things go wrong, I start to feel like a failure. Each mistake paralyzes me and I begin to think that life is not worth living because I’m not worthy of it.

Then about three years ago, things changed. The Spirit spoke. I couldn’t fall asleep because my mind was stuck in failure mode. I was hearing in one ear, “You’re not good enough” and I sunk into despair. Suddenly, I heard a voice in my other ear saying, “You’re right.” This was not like the first voice. I felt instantly calm, soothed, at peace. This was the voice of the Spirit. He didn’t speak audibly, but directly to my soul. These were the only words He said, but what I heard in that moment was, “You’re right to think you’re not good enough. You don’t have to be. I AM.” 

That was absolute freedom for me. I was no longer focused on my self and my failures, but grateful for Jesus caring enough for me not only to take my sins to the cross but to speak to me in my moment of stress. I could finally fall rest and fall asleep because in that moment, I gave all the mess-ups of my day up to Him instead of worrying about how I could make up for them the next day.

The word “enough” denotes measurement. By being “good enough,” I try to live up to some kind of expectation, and when I reach it, then I’ll be “enough." But if Christ has set us free, we are free indeed (Galatians 5:1). We are free to live, not to be slaves to standards. At the end of my day, all I could remember was the dust on the ceiling fan above me begging to be cleaned, paperwork I forgot to fill out again at work, the jacket I left on a park bench somewhere, all the times I failed to pray before interactions with people, the many “I love you’s” left unsaid. I had my failures of commission and omission piled up in my mind and showing up as stress in my shoulders and insomnia in my brain. But when the Spirit spoke, I knew He was in control and I didn’t have to be. I could fall asleep and trust that God’s mercies would be new in the morning (Lamentations 3:22-23).

Fighting For Freedom Through Faith 

In this sermon series, we are talking about fighting for freedom through faith. For me, this fight looks like remembering what God says in the midst of personal failure. I cannot keep fighting for self-approval, others’  approval, or even God’s approval.

Let’s take work for an example. I get up to write at 5:15am, train a few clients, then come home and take care of a two-year-old. If I try and live up to my own standards, I will disappoint others because I have to say no to hanging out past 9pm. If I try and live up to God’s standards, I will disappoint Him because I get angry at myself or others for getting in the way of my pre-set times to work. I will sleep in by accident, my daughter will skip a nap, or somebody will need my help. There are too many competing factors for me to keep up with. And there is freedom in not having to keep up. If I fight for approval, I will lose. Instead, I’ll fight for faith. 

I still fall into the trap of performing and feeling good, then failing and despairing. But God says He will never leave me or forsake me (Hebrews 13:5), so that means He’s not with me based on what I can do. He’s with me based on what He has done. Even if I mess up a million times, He will still be there. 

I Know The Great "I AM"

Fighting for freedom though faith means relying on His power and responding to it in a life of praise, not a jail sentence to performance. If I am here - breathing and writing, I know that God sustains me. If He sustains me, then He must have a purpose for me. I have to remember that He created me because He is “The Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty” (Exodus 34:6-7a). God is love and just. I was guilty, I did have to pay a price, and I was sentenced to death for my sins. But Jesus stepped in and traded places with me. He died, so that I may live. He lives, so I may be free. Thanks be to God!

Today, fighting for freedom through faith for me means focusing on the Lord’s kind rule instead of the cold cruelty of conditional love and impossible standards. It means remembering that Jesus is worthy, that Jesus paid the price, that Jesus is reigning, that Jesus will come again.

Jesus refers to Himself as “I AM” (John 8:58). Living in freedom means knowing that when the enemy says to me, “You’re not good enough,” I can respond with, “I know I AM, and I am His.”

 

What has Christ set you free from?

How are you living in that freedom today? 

What are the ways you fight for freedom through faith?

Written by Kasey Shuler

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