Posted in Christianity, Church, Concerts, Personal Growth, Worship, tagged Church, concert, EFC, Emmanuel Fellowship, Growth, Stretch, Sweetwater, The City Harmonic, Worship on April 11, 2011|
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In the midst of all of the loud music, bright lights, and excitement of yesterday’s worship service and evening concert with The City Harmonic, one testimony brought the entire day’s activities into perspective.
A young man caught me after the concert and said, “Pastor Eric, this was a breakthrough day for me.” He then went on to describe the freedom he experienced to lift his hands and celebrate as a worshipper.
“This was a breakthrough day for me.” Amen. Amen. Amen!
Those are the words a minister lives to hear. All of the planning, all of the prayer, all of the work is focused toward this one beautiful goal — spiritual breakthrough and growth in the lives of the ones we love.
I believe this young man’s personal observations were an accurate assessment of what we experienced as a church body yesterday. It was a day of breakthrough as we were stretched in many areas. From attendance, to sound quality, to lighting effects (I didn’t know our lights could do the things they did!), to the teamwork it took to make it all come together, we were stretched to reach out to new levels of breakthrough.
As pastor of Emmanuel Fellowship Church, I am blessed and overjoyed by where God has brought us as a congregation, and days like yesterday invite me to dream of where God is taking us as we continue to follow Him in this grand adventure.
As I laid my happy/sleepy head down on my pillow last night, I found myself in agreement with the words of my friend, “This was a breakthrough day for me.”
I pray it was for you as well.
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Posted in Christianity, Jesus, Sermons, Worship, tagged City Harmonic, concert, Consider, Emmanuel Fellowship, Faith, Hebrews, Jesus, Sermons on April 4, 2011|
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“So, my dear Christian friends, companions in following this call to the heights, take a good hard look at Jesus. He’s the centerpiece of everything we believe, faithful in everything God gave him to do.” Hebrews 3:1-2 (The Message)
As you take a good hard look at Jesus this week, I invite you to review these blog posts to renew the wow factor in your heart of the amazing love of our amazing King!
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Posted in Bible, Children, Christianity, Personal Growth, Sermons, tagged Children, Church, concert, events, labels, parenting, parents, princess, Sweetwater, Youth on September 20, 2010|
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The von Atzigen house is full of some pretty interesting and often times hilarious conversations. I vividly remember a mother/daughter chat in our home which left me both saddened and encouraged.
- Brenna: “Mommy, guess what?”
- Mindy: [Obligatorily] “What?”
- Brenna: “A girl at school told me I couldn’t be a princess anymore.”
- Mindy: Stunned silence.
- Brenna: “But, that’s not true. I am a princess. I’m glorious.”
- Mindy: [Sigh of relief] “Yes, Baby, you are a glorious princess.”
As the story was later related to me, I began to ponder, is that possible? Can you really take someone’s princess status away? And, though we dodged the tiara blasting bullet this time, the sad reality is that it is very possible for someone to take your princess title away. In fact, it happens all the time.
On playgrounds and report cards, in the locker room and at parties, the identity of our children is always being challenged. Psychologist Carl Jung put it this way, “The world will ask you who you are, and if you do not know, the world will tell you.”
Parents, one of our greatest responsibilities is to teach our children who God says they are before they believe the lies that others have to offer. At age five it means we fight to hold on to their inner princess, but the stakes only get higher as they mature.
Are you taking an active role in positively identifying your children? Have you planted the truth so deep in their hearts that the lies of others can’t root it out? This is the power of the kitchen table and tuck-in time at night, this is the value of long walks and projects together.
I once heard Dr. Dobson share that the primary source of a young woman’s self-esteem is what she thinks her daddy thinks of her. If this is true, then I have determined not to leave my daughter guessing — by God’s grace, may she have no doubt how much her daddy loves and respects her.
By God’s grace, may your children never doubt as well.
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