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Weekly Update: September 23

Take the challenge to read one chapter of John per day for 21 days.

Update from Pastor Sheldon MacGillivray

Dear Cornerstone Family,

Would you consider yourself to be spiritually healthy? I was evaluated on my physical health about a month ago when I was making a change to my life insurance policy. I received pages of information based on the findings from my blood analysis. Anything I wanted to know was revealed in the results. The status of my health was evaluated on a predetermined score that would tell me if I fit within the normal range of healthiness. Visually, I could run through the findings and quickly see if things were green for normal, yellow for trouble is brewing, and red for I am in trouble

What if you were to look at your spiritual condition the same way? Are you in a good place? Is trouble brewing? Are you in trouble? What if you were to look at a few spiritual disciplines and determine your spiritual health? 

Donald Whitney wrote a great book called Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life. In it, he taught about the disciplines that are helpful for our spiritual growth. We are to always see spiritual disciplines as a means to an end. They help us produce godliness, and godliness is the goal. Whitney reminds us that spiritual disciplines help us to have closeness with Christ. 

He begins his exploration with the discipline of Bible reading. God’s church is becoming more and more biblically illiterate because so many of us don’t spend enough time in God’s word. Few have ever read through the whole Bible, therefore we miss the grand themes of redemption that run throughout the Bible. Rarely are the books of the Old Testament read, so we miss seeing Christ in all of Scripture. If we want to know God, we need to read his word. 

One Chapter a Day

Jerry Bridges said reading gives us breath, but study give us depth. If you were to measure your spiritual health by how often you spend time in God’s word, what would your condition be? Good? Trouble brewing? In trouble? We now live in a time where there is an overabundance of information. There are multiple Bible translations and multiple study Bibles. You can get a book electronically through Kindle or Apple Books. You can now have books read to you through Audible, and many other outlets let you choose the way a book is delivered. We can no longer say we don’t like to read. The many choices that we have at our fingertips eliminates the excuses that we often use. 

Blessed is the person who delights in God’s word. Whitney said, “Joy does not come to you if you are spiritually passive; rather, joy is cultivated, but joy is cultivated by things you do.” More than ever, we need to be cultivating time in God’s word and exploring the depths of his love for us. We are people of the Book! 

In The Confessions of St. Augustine, Augustine shared that he heard children playing in the yard next door. They were chanting “Take up and read; Take up and read.” He took it to be God speaking through the children. He picked up the Bible that was beside him and read the first verse that his eyes came upon, Romans 13:13-14:

Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality, not in quarreling and jealousy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires. 

These verses changed his life because he believed these words were meant for him. He became a follower of Jesus through those verses and became one of the most influential theologians in church history. 

The word of God has the power to transform our lives. Just as my doctor will prescribe a way to become physically healthy, we need a daily dose of God’s word to be spiritually healthy. So let me give you a little prescription. It takes 21 days to form a habit. For the next 21 days, take the gospel of John and begin reading it. One chapter a day. I have included a guide for you that you can find here. It will help you formulate your thoughts. Remember: the goal is godliness, not just reading a book of the Bible. It also gives you a way to pray over the passage using an outline from the Lord’s Prayer. May you find great joy in God’s word.  

Trunk or Treat 2020

As we announced last week, we are planning to have a community Trunk or Treat on Friday, October 30, from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m.! This will be a wonderful opportunity to reach out to families when circumstances have been so challenging. 

You can help in two ways:

  • Click here and sign up to be a "trunker"! We are looking for 25 or more people to decorate their trunks and hand out candy on the night of the event. (We will be social distancing and requiring all volunteers to wear masks and gloves.)

  • Don't feel comfortable attending? No problem! You can help by donating candy and by praying for this event. A collection bin will be placed in the Cornerstone lobby for candy donations.

Our rain date is Saturday, October 31, from 3:00 to 4:30 p.m. Thank you for serving our community in this way!

Backyard Open House

It looks like this will be another beautiful weekend! I want to remind you that we are having another backyard open house at our home this Sunday from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Come and enjoy a beautiful fall evening with some of your Cornerstone family! (Address: 14204 Rosehill St., Overland Park, KS 66221)

Coming Soon: 4KC!

Each October we have been enjoying our 4KC series, exploring our mission, values, and vision for Cornerstone. This year we will look at our process of discipleship: Grow, Connect, Serve and Share. You don’t want to miss this opportunity because it describes the very heart of who we are at Cornerstone. Join us this October for 4KC! 

For His Kingdom,

Sheldon MacGillivray

Lead Pastor, Cornerstone