Dave Brisbin | 2.3.19
Situated on the liturgical calendar between Christmas and Easter, between Jesus’ birth and death, is a perfect time to look at Jesus’ life—to look at balancing what he lived and how he loved with the more theologically significant events of his birth, death, and resurrection. It’s a perfect time to consider how living as he lived would give theological significance to our own birth and death. But our western church roots go deep, and making that balancing shift can be difficult unless as Jesus says: we grow new ears to hear. Using parables to break through what we think we already know and how we already hear, Jesus gives us the story of the Sower, which is really more about the Four Soils. But as he speaks of seed falling on the beaten path, rocks, and thorns as well as on good soil, church ears have heard him speaking of four different types of people who break down to two basic groups: believers and non-believers, those who accept Jesus theologically and those who don’t, us and them. 

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Digging deep into the Aramaic underpinnings of Jesus’ saying, we find layers of meaning that put us in the center of the story: that ultimately each one of us is all four soils all at once. That we all have the blind spots, the hard baked stubborn spots, and the unhealed hurting spots that keep us from fully embracing a new truth, even as our good soil embraces others. If we willing to give little ground, Jesus is showing us how to prepare our soil and grow new ears that will grow good crops.

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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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