Dave Brisbin 3.22.20
On the first Sunday of COVI-19 lockdown, streaming to those in self-isolation, the surreal quality of living the reality of a pandemic outbreak is amplified. In just a week of lockdown, many of us are already strongly feeling the effects of disconnection from each other and the regular routines of life that once connected us. How can we best help each other in times like these—or any times? As always, Jesus gives us the principles: establish authentic connection first, see others and their needs as they really are, respond with action that because it is grounded in connection is always relevant, always feels like love. Connection always takes precedence over program—connection is the only program that matters.

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Those who are really making a difference during this crisis are those continuing to extend themselves to others, letting their actions flow from really knowing who they are flowing to. The uncertainty of a time like this raises a thousand questions, and maddeningly, the questions we’re asking out of our fear have no answers. But if we just continue to connect in any way we still can: finding the beauty in each moment, cheering a friend, hanging on to humor, helping those who need us, retaining our basic humanity, we find other answers that are much more powerful and make those other questions fade like the stars at sunrise. Living the fear kills connection. Living the connection keeps the fear at bay. Doesn’t kill it, but allows us to live fully in its presence.

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Everyone is recovering from something… Admitting this is the first step in spiritual life, because any unfinished business in our lives–trauma, unforgiveness, fear-based perceptions–fosters compulsive behavior and keeps us from connecting spiritually and emotionally.

Since we’re all recovering, we accept everyone right as they are—no expiration dates or deadlines. We don’t tell anyone what to believe or do. We present points of view that we hope will engage seekers in their own journey; help them unlearn limiting perceptions, beliefs, and compulsions; give opportunities to get involved in community, building the trust we all need to find real identity, meaning, and purpose. In other words, to engage the transforming Way of living life that Jesus called Kingdom…non-religiously understood from a first century Hebrew point of view.

 

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Embedded in the fun and laughter of each of our gatherings and events is the connection and accountability as well as the structure, discipline, and opportunity for service that authentic community is all about. We help create programs for physical support, emotional recovery, and spiritual formation that can meet any person’s needs. Such programs work at two levels: first to address a person’s physical and emotional stability—clinical, financial, relational,professional—anything that distracts from working on the second level: true spiritual formation centered around the contemplative way of life defined by an original Hebrew understanding of the message of Jesus.

Rather than telling people what to believe or think, we model and encourage engagement in a personal and communal spiritual journey that allows people to experience their own worthiness of connection and acceptance, to find the freedom from underlying fears that brings real meaning and purpose into focus.

 

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Seeing ourselves as a learning and recovery community that worships together, the focus isn’t on Sunday morning alone, but on every day of the week as we gather for worship, healing and support workshops, studies, 12 step meetings, counseling and mentoring sessions, referral services, and social events. We maintain a food pantry for those needing more support, a recovery worship gathering, and child care for those with little ones.

Our Sunday gathering starts at 10AM and our Recovery gathering on Tuesdays at 7PM. Both gatherings include worship with one of the best worship bands in the area. See our monthly calendar and our Facebook page to stay in touch with what is happening each week. You can also sign up on our elist for email enews updates.

 

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