I wanted to share this devotion I read today.  I pray that we all seek the Lord for a soft heart daily!   
(Alexander Smellie, “The Secret Place” 1907)

“Some fell on stony ground, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root!” Mark 4:5-6

Much is said about these stony-ground hearers of the Word, which is attractive and hopeful. I anticipate a true life, a brave witness, an abundant harvest. But suddenly comes the check, the change, the fall. And what was the problem? Ah! the heart was wrong, and therefore everything was wrong!

1. The heart was unbroken. The rock had never been penetrated at all, and the seed died soon on its hard and impervious surface.

I wonder whether the stubbornness and the stolidity of my heart have been shattered. Have I been melted . . .
into practical concern of soul,
into the sense of spiritual neediness,
into godly sorrow,
into contrite prayer?
There can be no new birth and no vital growth, until then!

After an eruption of Mount Vesuvius, the lava covered the fields with an apparently invincible crust; but the peasants bored holes in it, and pierced to the ground below, and planted their vines–and in due season gathered the grapes. Has the lava-crust of my heart been divinely pierced and overcome?

2. And the heart was shallow and superficial. It had no depth. Immediately beneath the thin layer of top-soil, was that rebellious and intractable adamant; the seed had not a sufficient resting-place and home.

This is the fatal fault of very many. They do not stop to think about unseen, eternal, heavenly things. They do not take time to consider their own miserable state of soul, and the grace of Jesus Christ. They nod, and glance, and bustle by. 

Again I ought to examine myself. I can be eager enough, and resolute enough, about earthly matters. But have I ever roused my very soul, have I ever set my face like a flint, to seek and find the Lord my Savior, my Righteousness, my Strength? There is no possibility of salvation for the superficial heart!

3. And the heart was dry. It had none of the moistening, subduing, fructifying influences of the Holy Spirit. If the showers descend upon the rocky soil, there is no loam to retain them and to derive a benefit from them.

Just so, does everything depend on the Spirit’s presence and work within me! Apart from His dews and gentle rains, I am helpless, hopeless, dead, damned. For until His almightiness renews me, until His waters slake and vivify my parched and thirsty being, until I receive the outpouring of the grace of God–I have no spiritual life.

Is it not a miserable heart, this heart of stone?

“I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh!” Ezekiel 36:26

White Flag Calvary“.

That’s our name.

You wouldn’t believe how hard it is to come up with a name for a new church.  You want something unique, so you don’t get lost in the crowd of church names out there.  Yet, I firmly believe that the Lord Jesus builds His own church, as He wills, regardless of the name.  So, my wife Dana and I asked Jesus to show us what the name should be.

I started writing down what is most important to me as a pastor.  I started with the word “GRACE”.  Well, thats a great word and an even better idea but just about every church in Denver has the word “GRACE” somewhere in the name.  So, to avoid confusion, I kept thinking.

A synonymous term for grace is the phrase “New Covenant”.  I thought of using that term or some creative way of breaking up those words but nothing was really catching my eye.    The journey continued.

I thought of how our church, and any church, needs to respond to the New Covenant of Grace and that is by surrendering in humility and faith.  James 4:6 tells us that God gives grace to the humble and we certainly want, and rely upon, Gods favor for our church.   So, I took a look at the word “Surrender“.  Thats a pretty neat word.  I had just about decided that would be the name of the church when I started drawing some pictures of what our logo could look like.  Thats when the idea of a white flag popped in my head.  My wife was sitting right next to me when I drew the flag and said “Thats it!”

The more I thought about it the more I loved the name.  It truly speaks of humility and faith.  Those two relational realities that are required in the life of a believer to receive grace.  I know for many years I tried to make God happy through my own efforts.  I tried to obtain victory over sin in my own way.  Yet, I found out what everybody else does, that I could not do Gods will in my own efforts.  From my own resources I drew upon, there was never a victory.  But God, in His great love, showed me the Word of God, that teaches us to surrender instead of strive.   To trust in Gods grace and resources instead of my own.

Thus, White Flag Calvary was named.

We are on break of the summer.  Stay connected with the men’s and women’s events while we are on break.

 

Don’t Drift!

 

Stay Anchored to Jesus!

 

 

I believe that the foundation of our church is Grace.  The New Covenant.  It’s all that God has freely provided for us through the person and work of Jesus Christ.   So, I have attempted to find the best way to teach God’s people about grace.  The Growing in Grace course is the best I have found.  That is how our discipleship starts.

 

We would live to facilitate your growth in Grace by meeting with you one on one to explore the depths of the New Covenant with you.  We believe that this is how we can make disciples that are equipped to follow and please the Lord. Just email Pastor Shawn at shawn@whiteflagcalvary.org and you will be put with someone who can walk through these with you.

 

Just go the the Living in Christ website HERE and begin listening to the studies.  They are life changing.  I would recommend that you print off the note sheets and take your own notes through the course.  It will help you remember all the details.

 

I want to give you a warning.  There will be a time in this study that it really “clicks” and your heart will be so blessed by the realities of God’s wonderful Grace.  KEEP GOING UNTIL THAT HAPPENS!  Don’t give up after one or two studies if you don’t feel like it’s beneficial.   Your life will never be the same when freedom comes in such a powerful way.

The Body of Christ has many needs.  And God has placed you specifically into His Body to meet those needs with love.  

If you would like to serve at White Flag Calvary, just fill out this application and we’ll get the process going.   You can email it to Pastor Shawn (shawn@whiteflagcalvary.org) or drop it off at church on Sunday.  Then be praying for the Lord’s direction and a heart to serve His people in love.

 

Here is a sermon from our current series about your role in the church.  SPEC OPS FOR JESUS

 

 

Ministry Application