Archives For Family

A Birthday Gift

LifePoint Church —  February 13, 2013 — Leave a comment

LifePoint Preschool

In Preschool Ministry, our main focus is building the foundation of biblical truths by applying three bottom lines to everything we do:

  • God loves me,
  • God made me
  • Jesus wants to be my forever friend

In order to apply those three bottom lines in our 3 Year-old thru PreK classrooms, we have implemented small groups. Not only are the kids getting more focused and intentional discussion time, but they are also building relationships with their small group leaders. A small group leader in LP Preschool is someone who, in addition to their parents, is able to show the love of Christ to these kiddos.

Recently, a parent told me how their child’s small group leader is making a difference in not only their child’s life, but her as well. The mom began by sharing with me that her son had a birthday in January. The small group leader gave the child a Veggies Tales movie for a birthday gift on the Sunday following his birthday. The parent pursued me to share how impressed they were by the show of love from their son’s small group leader. Parents do not expect their child to receive a gift from a Sunday morning volunteer. This parent was so overwhelmed with joy for her son. He was able to come to church and enjoy learning about Christ. The mom is being impacted because this is something that she never felt when attending her church growing up. A sweet gesture from a small group leader is making such an impact on the parent. This sweet story reminded me of why we do small groups with our kids. We want every child and parent to feel the love of Christ when they attend church. Small group leaders are fulfilling this every week in LP Preschool.

LifePoint Preschool is an exciting and fulfilling ministry area where you can serve and making an impact in the lives of precious little ones and their parents. To take a next step in serving, fill out our Serve Form.

Post by Amber Morton, LifePoint Preschool Director. Amber is a great picture of the vision of our Next Gen ministries, pointing children and students to a Christ-centered life to make an impact on the world. Amber has been a part of the LifePoint faith family from her childhood. Once a part of our Next Gen ministries, she now leads a great team of leaders and volunteers to help others grow in their faith. Amber is married to Justin, and they have their own sweet little preschool just arrived this past year. You can connect with Amber on Twitter and Facebook.

Elevate was different this year, but in a good way, said LifePoint Kids Director Brigid Waring.

“We had unbelieveable numbers, way bigger than last year, but what I really loved was that we had so many fifth graders! We really hit a home run!”

She emphasized how important it is to get these third- through fifth-graders ready for the upcoming challenges of middle school, and the way it will affect them spiritually.

Elevate 2013

Brigid said one of the best things about Elevate was the way the kids really learned to worship. Michael Reed led the student ministry band and was “just phenomenal in the way he related to the kids.” He helped them realize what worship is: not just singing and praising on Sundays and Wednesdays, but how we live our lives day to day, minute to minute, Brigid said. “It made them see worship in a different way.”

Middle School Pastor Matt Stout also was able to talk with the kids, especially the 64 fifth graders, about their upcoming transition. “That’s huge,” Brigid said. “It was the best of both worlds. A partnering of both ministries” for the kids.

The topic of the weekend was friendship, and the kids learned that Jesus is not only our role model, he is our best friend. Brigid hopes the kids came away with the understanding that it ultimately doesn’t matter what their parents or their small group leader believe, it really matters what THEY believe in their hearts about their relationship with Jesus.

LifePoint Marriages focuses on several, what we call, “Essentials of a Healthy Marriage”. Each marriage event is centered around one of these essentials.

  • Treasure Trust
  • Pursue Passion
  • Celebrate Sex
  • Balance Finances
  • Cultivate Communication

This year at Romance and Roses, our annual marriage event in February for Middle Tennessee campuses, we are looking at Cultivate Communication. Communication is the lifeblood of a marriage. It is universal in a marital relationship because it affects every part of your life together. Communication impacts your sex life, how you handle conflict, how or whether or not you dream together, your finances, and so on. If you are in the Middle Tennessee area, keep reading. There is something for you to do, too.

Romance and Roses 2013

Much has been written on this subject to the point where it would be easy to over-complicate it and see it as not reachable. This is not the case at all. Here are some simple thoughts on keeping communication simple, therefore attainable.

Be aware
… of the need to communicate. You must let your mate know what’s going on in your mind. Husbands, being a man is no excuse. Sometimes we just have to push on through to inform our wives of where we are on certain things. The opposite of not communicating is silence.

And silence can be so easily misunderstood.

Be clear
… in giving and receiving of information. Many, many couples I counsel here at LifePoint come in with problems that are based on misunderstanding, a lack of clarity. A little effort upfront can alleviate a ton of needless conflict, needless confusion and sometimes needless pain down the road.

A wise man once said, “Seek first to understand, then to be understood.” Not bad advice.

Be open
… and honest with each other. This one takes some time to build trust to get to the honesty point, especially when the honesty disagrees with your mate. However, being open even when conflict results can build trust in the long run.

Just be sure in your being open that you are not brutally honest. There are a thousand ways to tell your spouse that you disagree. Pick out one that doesn’t destroy their self-esteem in the process.

My wife Selma and I will be covering more on Cultivating Communication at Romance and Roses this year. If you are in the Middle Tennessee area, we hope you will join us February 15 at the Embassy Suites in Murfreesboro, but you have to have a ticket. They are $40.00 per couple for dinner, music, entertainment by Stephen Bargatze, an amazing comedian/magician, and some beneficial thoughts on communicating with your spouse. Buy your ticket in the concourse at either Smyrna area campus on Sunday morning, February 10.

If you are not in Middle Tennessee, you can still benefit from a night of building a healthier marriage during the month of February. I encourage you to plan now for a great evening with your spouse. Make time to go out for a great meal. During that meal, share one or two memories where you felt that your marriage was really alive or healthy. One more thing, both you and your spouse read this article before dinner and then take time to learn how you can Cultivate better Communication as a couple. Share which one of the three “Be”s from above you believe will lead to a better communication and one way you want take action to cultivate that in the next month. Here’s to your healthier marriage!

Post from Rodney Wilson, LifePoint Marriages Pastor. Rodney has a passion for encouraging, counseling, and teaching men and women how to have great marriages that make Jesus famous. Rodney, and his wife Selma, have authored Extraordinary Marriage and The Parent Adventure. Rodney and Selma have two adult daughters, two son-in-laws, and in Rodney’s opinion the greatest grandson in the universe. You can connect with Rodney on Twitter and Facebook.

Get Messy

LifePoint Church —  February 1, 2013 — 2 Comments

Get Messy - PeaceWhen sin entered the world so long ago in that magnificent garden, a deep chasm was created between us and our loving Father. Despite the separation he felt, God still loved us and longed for that relationship to be restored. God showed that he cared about peace in our relationship with Him when he sent His Son as a sacrifice for our sins.

That was the ultimate sacrifice, the ultimate act of peace and it was messy. In this crazy, broken world, we are often on a search for peace. Some days we want to crawl in a quiet corner of the room and take a deep breath, escaping from the hectic lifestyles we lead. God wants us to have peace in our life and in our relationships.

God’s Word says in Romans 14:19, “So let us do all we can to live in peace. And let us work hard to build each other up.”

I have a sister who is four years younger than me. Our personalities are so completely different we often wonder how we ended with the same parents. I never realized that two people from the same family could be so completely different, until I had kids of my own. Needless to say, the differences between my sister and I caused terrible fights and strained our relationship. On an occasion or two, I can even remember some hair pulling. Those fights are the most unpleasant memories of my childhood. However, my sister and I have both found the peace of knowing Christ and have become great friends. We still disagree but not on the same level as when we were kids. We have learned to prove we care more about each other than winning an argument. God wants us to have peace in our relationships. He wants us to walk away from an argument whether it’s with our boss, spouse or kids.

He wants each of us to let go of “what’s fair” and teach our kids this principal. He wants our families to prove we care about others by becoming part of the solution in our schools, workplaces, churches, sports teams and any other place we can make an impact. It is through these actions that people will recognize we are different; giving us a chance to share the love of Christ with them. Taking time and effort to uphold peace in our relationships is messy. It’s hard. Like Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross, it will cost us something. But, it’s ultimately what God wants us to do. So get to it and “get messy.”

Each month in LifePoint Kids, leaders point K-5th graders to a Christ-centered life through a virtue found throughout the Bible. These principles help each child grow in wisdom and stature just like Jesus. February’s focus in LifePoint Kids is Peace, you can find more here. You can also find Family Devotionals to carry home the virtue through the week under the ‘Connect’ section in LifePoint’s iOS and Android apps.

Post by Heidi Binder, LifePoint Kids Director at our Stewarts Creek Campus. Heidi brings a contagious energy to pointing kids to Jesus. You can connect Heidi through Facebook.

Don’t you love how every January we get a mulligan? You know a chance to start over with a new year. It’s sort of exciting—a fresh clean slate. So many of us make New Year’s resolutions that we are determined to keep but somehow by the end of the month most have been forgotten as we settle into another long year. Life somehow gets in the way of our grand plans.

Deciding it is worth it to finish what you started.Jesus says, “In this world you will have trouble.” That’s not very comforting is it? Jesus promises us that life is going to be difficult. We will face sickness, temptations, and failures. Things happen that we sure didn’t plan and we just don’t understand. I think we often forget that even Jesus had troubles. He was tempted, beaten and crucified. He could have stopped it all and taken the easy way out but He was determined to finish what He started. In Philippians, Paul says that Jesus showed determination by being obedient to death. See Philippians 2:8.

I know that there are many times in life that we just want to give up. I watch my eldest daughter struggle with school because of her learning disabilities. Many times I have helped her study for 2-3 weeks for a test. She would work so diligently trying her best. Only to watch her come home with an F on the test, looking so defeated. She could easily give up and say, “I just can’t do this!” As a parent, I want to hold her tight and shield her from the harshness of our world but I can’t. I have to help her honor God by doing her best and finishing what she starts. Instead of giving up, we have partnered with her teachers to figure out ways to help her learn. We have our ups and downs, she still has to put in long hours of studying but she has been able to maintain good grades. She is one determined little girl and I could not more proud!

God promises to be with us through all that we go through in life. God gives us the strength to keep doing what we should do even when others give up. We honor God when we have the determination to finish what we have started. When we put our faith in God, He’ll give us the strength we need to keep doing what we should do—even when it’s hard. Determination isn’t about doing something on your own. It is the very nature of God to finish what He started. Our kids need to understand that God never gives up on them. He also gives them the power to have hope and faith and to never give up. Hebrews 12:1 says, “Let us keep on running the race marked out for us.” As parents, we need to have the determination necessary to not miss out on what God wants to do in our life and in the lives of our kids.

Each month in LifePoint Kids, leaders point K-5th graders to a Christ-centered life through a virtue found throughout the Bible. These principles help each child grow in wisdom and stature just like Jesus. January’s focus in LifePoint Kids is Determination, you can find more here. You can also find Family Devotionals to carry home the virtue through the week under the ‘Connect’ section in LifePoint’s iOS and Android apps.

Post by Brigid Waring, LifePoint Kids Director. Brigid leads Kids ministries for our Smyrna Campus while coaching all LifePoint Kids Directors. She has a passion for equipping parents and small group leaders to walk faithfully and intentionally in the lives of children. You can connect with Brigid on twitter and Facebook.