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Connect - Love

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Today's sermon from Pastor Ed Allen continued our series on Connection, looking again at the Love Chapter, I Corinthians 13.

"The gospel in a word is love."  Love sums up the gospel.  God is calling us to a connection with each other and with Him.

Our goal is to do our best to create a network of loving connections.

The life to which we've been called transcends everything.  So how do we get there?

We learn to love well and we practice what we've learned.

Love is an action.

Conceiving of love as driven by emotion can cause damage:

--It makes my relationships about me.

--It's not true.

I John 3:16 - Jesus laid down His life for us.  Love is action.

Love is deferential.

At its core, love says, "After you!"  "How can I help?"

--"Love is patient."

If you struggle with patience, you struggle with love.

--"Love is kind."

Kindness is a force of nature.  It changes the atmosphere.  This is active stuff!  It's intentional.  We have to offer kindness to one another - or fight to get to the place where we can.

--"Love is not self-seeking."

Also translated, "Love does not insist on its own way."

This whole concept is difficult for us as Americans.  It's not saying, "Love is a doormat."  But it's still not putting yourself as the top priority.

"We are meant to die in one another's arms, surrounded by prayer and song, knowing we are loved."

We're fallible, but we're trying to build a community of people who are patient, kind, and looking out for each other.

We finished the service with a celebration of community in the Lord's Supper.

Posted by Sondy Eklund with

Connect - Through the Church

On Sunday, October 29, 2017, we began the service with a report from Ina York, our missionary in Cercadillo, in the Dominican Republic.  Gateway will be bringing two teams to help her ministry this summer.  

Ina talked about how God called her to Cercadillo, and how God is working in lives there.

Then Pastor Ed Allen continued his sermon series, "Connect."  This week he looked at how the church helps us connect.

For a light bulb to really be what it's meant to be, it must shed light.  In order to shed light, it must be connected to a power source and connected to a mechanism to turn it on.

For us, that mechanism to turn us on is a relationship network bigger than your family.  You need a church.

What is a church?

To answer this question, we looked at Jesus' words in Matthew 16:13-20.

Jesus is after lovers, not "likes."

Jesus asked what people think of him.  But then he said, "I will build my church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it."  He's making a big claim.

A church is a gathering of those who have been called by God.

The word means "called-out ones."  The church is not a building, not an institution, not an organization.

Jesus builds the church.

Jesus gave Peter the name "Rocky."  He's saying this is what it's all about.  It's not about Peter - Jesus builds the church.  

If you're connecting to this church, you're here because Jesus is drawing you here.

The church will be built.

Despite circumstances.  Churches in China and Africa right now are seeing explosive growth.  Persecution doesn't stop the church.

Fellow light bulbs, what do you need to do to strengthen your connection to the network?

Be forewarned, at Gateway we'll make it as hard as possible for you to sit and do nothing.  We want you to shine!