Our deep gratitude to Josh Carney, who shared a number of stories from his family life and taught through the Parable of the Unforgiving Servant. In Christ, we are recipients of extravagant, cosmic forgiveness. Can we truly receive that love and mercy as a gift, and will it transform our own capacity to forgive others?
Pastor Sean Palmer asked us to consider what the psalms of lament and the film Bruce Almighty have to say about the nature of prayer and our relationship to a Creator who invites us into intimate friendship. Whether in rejoice or in anger, we are called to relate to God in honesty as a Divine Friend; a friend who knows our needs better than we do; a friend who longs for us to align our prayer and actions in joyful submission toward God's redemptive movement.
It's always a joy to have Scott Erickson back with us. He shared a beautiful and personal message about the dangers of comparison, the vitality of true contribution, and how loving God, loving others, and loving ourselves with genuine abandon can be infectious.
We were overjoyed to welcome Pastor Ed Seay (Chris' father) this weekend. Ed invited us to return to the familiar and vital parable of the Prodigal Son. Whether we have squandered the goodness of God's provision, or are holding on to rigid resentments, all of us are welcomed back into the Father's loving embrace, and a seat at the feast.
Pastor Chris Seay shares with us about the importance of embodying our six Rhythms of Ecclesia globally. As a church we believe in being a community in Houston that is real, kind, seeks God, seeks beauty, serves others, and is hospitable. Pastor Chris shares stories with us about the ways Puerto Rican brothers and sisters are living out the Rhythms in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria.
Our guest and dear brother, Dave Gibbons, joined us to share a word of profound encouragement about our identities as image bearers of God and those called to sacrificial service. From thoughts on freedom, fatherhood, healing, and the Holy Spirit, Dave invites us to embrace the power granted to those in Christ.
Pastor Chris Seay invites us to consider what the Sermon on the Mount and The Princess Bride teach us about the great challenge of loving our enemies. Jesus calls us to end the cycles of anger, violence, and retaliation in the world; laying down vengeance in favor of the kind of forgiveness and blessing that can transform our communities, relationships, and our own hearts.
Pastor Sean Palmer taught on the "Hero's Journey", and what Batman has to do with spiritual formation. God has given his people a call to action and to discipleship; modeled to us by a Savior who came to us incarnate in a most unassuming and unremarkable form.
This weekend, we had the honor of hearing from Jamie Tworkowski, founder of To Write Love on Her Arms. Jamie shines a spotlight on mental health and our call to freedom as children of God. We were created to be free and this freedom includes the freedom to be honest about where we are at in our journey.
Pastor Chris Seay calls upon all in our Ecclesia family to serve in some particular ways as we continue to grieve with all those touched by the shooting at Santa Fe High School. We are called to respond as those covered in the grace and mercy of our Savior, to transform shame, especially in the lives of young people in vulnerable circumstances.