Child dedication is a chance for parents to express their desire and dedication to raise their child in such a way that he or she would grow up in a relationship with God. It is an opportunity for the family to commit to teaching and showing the child the love of God, and it’s a chance for our church to commit to supporting the family throughout the journey of raising their child.
We will dedicate children at each of the four services on Mother's Day, Sunday May 8th.
SUNDAY, MAY 1 @ 12:45 PM
MARINA PARK, VENTURA
At Mission, we want to help people find and follow Christ. Baptism is a celebration of that journey!
Mission hosts a baptism event every few months, where we get to watch person after person publicly declare that they've found their hope in Jesus and decided to follow Him. At our last event on February 28, 12 people decided to go public with their faith through baptism! (check out the photos) Don't miss the next one!
We are a group of imperfect people pursuing a perfect God. We exist to help each other find and follow Christ. These are some things we want to be true of our group:
- We create a safe and honest environment, staying transparent and authentic.
- We keep it inside the circle. Confidentiality is necessary for a healthy group.
- We look together to the Bible for help and guidance, and keep out our own politics, sales, or agendas.
- We do not try to fix each other, preach sermons, or give unsolicited advice. We instead encourage, listen to, and celebrate each other.
- We handle conflict between us quickly and honestly by going to the person, owning our part, and practicing forgiveness.
- We respect each others’ time by starting and ending when we say we will.
- We trust that it is God’s role to change people, not ours.
- We believe that in Jesus Christ, there is hope for everyone.
During the month of April, we've been taking a look at four very real struggles that we all deal with in our everyday lives and learn together how to begin winning. Because when it comes to pride, worry, anger and guilt... the struggle is real.
Mike Breaux finished our series by talking about the long list of ways that guilt haunts us. Whether it's a past that we can't forget or a present that we can't accept, it gets to each one of us. But he encouraged us to move from seeing guilt as the secret, hidden, tormenter, and letting it become a "check engine" light that drives us back to a loving God, full of grace.
- Spend some time getting to know any new people in the group and catching up after the break!
- How'd you find Mission? What keeps you coming back?
- What's one thing that you would want everyone in the group to know about you or your life right now?
- What was one important or memorable thing that you did during the break?
- What's one reasons you are you glad to be in a group/back in session?
- Throughout #TheStruggleIsReal, we talked about pride, worry, anger, and guilt; which week impacted you the most? Did anything help you see God in a new or fresh way?
Psalm 51 was written by King David about 300 years ago. He wrote it after his friend Nathan confronted him about having an affair with is friend's wife, then sneakily sending his friend to his death in battle to cover it up. This is David's desperate prayer of repentance.
Read Psalm 51:3-6 (New Living Translation) together.
3 For I recognize my rebellion; it haunts me day and night.
4 Against you, and you alone, have I sinned; I have done what is evil in your sight. You will be proved right in what you say, and your judgment against me is just.
5 For I was born a sinner—yes, from the moment my mother conceived me.
6 But you desire honesty from the womb, teaching me wisdom even there.
7 Purify me from my sins, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
8 Oh, give me back my joy again; you have broken me—now let me rejoice.
9 Don’t keep looking at my sins. Remove the stain of my guilt.
- David made a huge mistake, but had a long track record of faith and goodness in his life as well. What stands out to you about how David approaches God here?
- From what we see in David's prayer, what can we expect from God in the midst of our sin and brokenness?
- Have you ever approached God in a similar way? Was it like? How did you feel afterward?
- Breaux said that taking a "fearless moral inventory" should be like regular car maintenance in our lives. Do you often take an inventory of what's going on inside your heart? What does that look like for you?
- Breaux talked about the difference between guilt and shame, and how unresolved guilt BECOMES shame. How have you seen that happen in your life? How can you stop that shift from happening?
- Speaking through the prophet Isaiah in the Old Testament, God says "I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more." But shame tells us that God can never forget what we've done. For you, what stands in the way of believing that God loves us enough to forget our sins?
- Breaux talked about finding tangible ways to bring our guilt and sin to God, and we see it in David's writing as well. What are some ways that you can tangibly bring your real self to God this week, and experience the grace waiting for you there? Figure out what works for you, and spend some time doing that this week!
GUILT from God's Perspective
guilt from Satan's perspective
Psalm 51:3-6 (MSG)
I know how bad I've been; my sins are staring me down. You're the One I've violated, and you've seen it all, seen the full extent of my evil. You have all the facts before you; whatever you decide about me is fair. I've been out of step with you for a long time, in the wrong since before I was born. What you're after is truth from the inside out. Enter me, then; conceive a new, true life.
Secret sin cannot coexist with inner peace.
Psalm 32:1-5 (NLT)
Oh, what joy for those whose disobedience is forgiven, whose sin is put out of sight! Yes, what joy for those whose record the Lord has cleared of guilt, whose lives are lived in complete honesty! When I refused to confess my sin, my body wasted away, and I groaned all day long. Day and night your hand of discipline was heavy on me. My strength evaporated like water in the summer heat.
Finally, I confessed all my sins to you and stopped trying to hide my guilt. I said to myself, “I will confess my rebellion to the Lord.” And you forgave me! All my guilt is gone.
Guilt: Where Religion and Psychology Meet, by Dr. David Belgum
“…their physical symptoms and breakdowns are for many their involuntary confessions of guilt.”
“A pervasive sense of shame is the ongoing premise that one is fundamentally bad, inadequate, defective, unworthy, or not fully valid as a human being.”
“The difference between guilt and shame is very clear in theory. We feel guilty for what we do. We feel shame for what we are. A person feels guilt because he DID something wrong. A person feels shame because he IS something wrong.”
“Because God loves us unconditionally—along with our dark sides—we don’t need to dodge ourselves. In the light of this love the pain of self-knowledge can be at the same time the beginning of our healing.”
Isaiah 57:17-19 (NLT)
I have seen what they do, but I will heal them anyway! I will lead them. I will comfort those who mourn, bringing words of praise to their lips. May they have abundant peace, both near and far,” says the Lord, who heals them.
1 John 1:9 (NLT)
But if we confess our sins to Him, He is faithful and just to forgive us and cleanse us from every wrong.
Isaiah 43:25 (NIV)
"I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more."
Isaiah 44:22 (NLT)
“I have swept away your sins like the morning mists. I have scattered your offenses like the clouds. Oh, return to me, for I have paid the price to set you free."
Psalm 103:12 (NIV)
…as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
Hebrews 10:17 (NLT)
“…I'll forever wipe the slate clean of their sins.”
Romans 8:1 (NLT)
So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.
Micah 7:19 (NLT)
Once again you will have compassion on us. You will trample our sins under your feet and throw them into the depths of the ocean!
2 Corinthians 5:17 (NIV)
If anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come. The old is gone, the new is here.
Shame VS Grace
SHAME tells me I'm defective,
GRACE tells me that I'm valuable.
SHAME’S greatest weapon is the fear of judgment.
GRACE’S even greater weapon is the relief of unfailing love.
SHAME says that because I'm flawed, I'm unacceptable.
GRACE says that even though I am flawed, I am priceless.
SHAME believes the opinion of other people is what matters.
GRACE believes that the opinion of God is the only thing that matters.
SHAME makes us hide.
GRACE sets us free.
SHAME is the language of the thief.
GRACE is the language of Jesus.