General Conference

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Jesus prayed, “I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” John 17:20-21

We are part of something big! Forest Hills is part of a church denomination that links arms around the entire planet. We are a United Methodist congregation, and the United Methodist Church is one of the few truly global Christian churches. We have United Methodist Christian brothers and sisters in nearly every country on earth!

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Just Jesus and You

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Growing spiritually is not an individual journey.
 
I’ve been talking a lot about how our spiritual growth leads to behaviors that affect others. Our faith is intended to change our daily lives. Our faith is intended to change how we interact with our world, our environment, and others around us. Jesus says that others (“everyone”) will know we are Christians by how we love others (John 13:35). Our lives are on display. We are a light shining from a stand for others to see (Matthew 5:15). We are called to live in relationship with the rest of the world.

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Inside Out’s Missing Character

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Granted, the Pixar film Inside Out is a few years old now, but I would wager a great many homes are peopled with children who still love to watch this imaginative and colorful movie over and over again.  It made quite a few waves upon its release.  It was hailed for its creative storytelling and emotional depth, its good humor and top-notch production.  Watching a little girl’s feelings personified made for a wonderful movie experience. It is tough to argue with all the accolades but I simply what to make one point:  The Bible did it first.

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Walking Through (and Sometimes Into) Doors

4.20.16Doors
 
Maybe you have seen the above poster before. It’s simply a compilation of various doors that can be found in the Twin Cities. This particular poster only includes front doors, but they all look very different. Because it’s a poster and ostensibly a piece of art, the featured doors are rather ornate or made from expensive materials. They look cool.

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The Bliss of Denial

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Maybe you’ve been there…
 
Maybe you too have felt the hot gaze of passersby as you struggle in vain to silence your screaming child there in the freezer section.  You begin to sweat a little. Your face flushes with anger as well as embarrassment.  Your mind races:  Why are they doing this now?  Why do they find this to be a socially acceptable reaction to disappointment?  How is it that this creature writhing on the floor is a product of my genetic material?   

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Spoiler Alert

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We love a good twist in a story.  There is something special about a final scene that makes us gasp.  We enjoy the surprise of having the unexpected happen.  The same cannot be said for life in general, but we allow movies to throw us for a loop; that is part of their function.  We revel in a good reveal at the end.

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Healthy, Holy Habits

4.4.16
 
Besides the four Gospels, the New Testament continues to show that healthy, holy habits foster spiritual growth. The early Christians in Jerusalem continued in the practices of teaching, fellowship, breaking of bread and prayer (Acts 2:42).

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Sent Before You’re Ready

3.29.16
 
Have you ever noticed that Jesus sends out His disciples to go and do ministry in the world way before they are ready? 

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Houdini Easter

3.23.16

But it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. 

-2 Timothy 1:10

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The Work of Holy Week

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As we find ourselves in the midst of Holy Week, it is easy to go along for the ride.  Many of us have gone this way before.  We have walked with Christ and witnessed the betrayal and corruption that finally put him on the cross.  In the end, we understand that while the Jewish leaders and the Roman army played a role in the death of Christ, ultimately it was a mixture of our sin and God’s profound grace that prompted his death.
 


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