- Thanks for joining Immanuel's online church community! You can find us at any time by logging in to faithlife.com and selecting our church group in the left-hand sidebar. We’ve created this group to encourage community interactions throughout the week. The activity feed holds daily devotions, posts, announcements, and more. You can post here, too, and join in on the discussion! Your Faithlife account gives you access to many tools (found in the left-side Community panel): Watch Faithlife TV: https://faithlifetv.com/ You can view Faithlife TV on your smart TV, computer, and mobile device. Download the church community app: iOS: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/faithlife/id848461256 Android: https://play.google.com/store/apps/developer?id=Faithlife Have Questions? We’re happy to help! Click on About on the left to contact any admin or send the church office an email.Android Apps by Faithlife on Google PlayEnjoy millions of the latest Android apps, games, music, movies, TV, books, magazines & more. Anytime, anywhere, across your devices.play.google.com
Staying Connected to Jesus 2
Philippians 1: 9-11
And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.
Thought for Today
Jesus tells us that if we abide in Him, as the branch abides in the vine, we will bear fruit. What does this fruit look like? Is it worth bearing? Paul tells us about the fruit of righteousness. First, he tells us our love will abound more and more when we are connected to Jesus. Who doesn’t want to be more loving? Jesus said that love would be the hallmark of His kingdom. “They will know you are my disciples if you love one another” (Jn. 13:35). When we are connected to, and empowered by Christ, we discover how much we are loved. God literally loves you to death! As our hearts open to the love of God it becomes our naturel response to share it with others. We think of ourselves less and see the needs of others more. We become more compassionate and caring. This sounds like a fruit worth bearing to me!
Lord Jesus, help me to become more like You, loving everyone around me in increasing measure. Amen.
A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. — Jesus Christ
Quote of the Day
He has achieved success who has worked well, laughed often, and loved much. — Elbert Hubbard
Staying Connected to Jesus 1
I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.
Thought for Today
Jesus compares the Christian life to that of a vine and branches. The vine feeds nutrients to the branches so that they can live and be productive. The vine itself does no other work. It is up to the branches to take the energy and nutrients and do something productive with them. This is a beautiful metaphor for the church. Jesus feeds us His love, grace, strength, and Spirit. What we do with all of this is up to each of us. We can produce wonderful fruit for His pleasure or clusters of leaves for ourselves. The vine does not determine this. It is also important to note that the size of the connection between the vine and the branch determines how much of the nutrients get into the branch. We will be exploring these realities this week, and in the weeks to come consider how we can increase our connection with Christ in order to bear all the fruit we can for His glory.
Lord Jesus, show me how to become all You want me to be and give me the strength to grow. Amen
“We must continually abide in the vine, so that we can keep bearing lasting fruits” ― Lailah Gifty Akita
Quote of the Day
Take away love and our earth is a tomb. — Robert Browning
- Daily Inspiration posted an announcement
5:30 Saturday Service Tonight CanceledTonight's (1/28) Service is canceled due to the impending snow storm. Please join us for our regular schedule Sunday morning.
Thy Kingdom Come, Thy Will Be Done: His Kingdom and Will Sampled
And he went throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction among the people. So his fame spread throughout all Syria, and they brought him all the sick, those afflicted with various diseases and pains, those oppressed by demons, those having seizures, and paralytics, and he healed them. And great crowds followed him from Galilee and the Decapolis, and from Jerusalem and Judea, and from beyond the Jordan.
Thought for Today
We live in a time of great comfort in terms of how we live and the access we have to a wonderful medical network. We take advantage of these as we are afforded busy productive lives. We shop for life's conveniences with fully stocked shelves at a myriad of stores(don't check the baby formula isle). But let's take a mind trip back to the first century, Jesus' time. None of these things existed: No medications other than crude home made concoctions and meals from the herd and the garden.
Jesus arrives on the scene and begins His ministry. He has come to redeem the world, those who will know Him as their Messiah, Redeemer King. He also has great compassion on the terrible human condition before Him. He has the capability to care for people by healing their chronic and deadly conditions. What would your reaction be to this marvelous news, that someone has the ability to heal and expel demons?
Jesus also taught about His Father, God. He began to teach the disciples and growing crowds about God's Kingdom and Will. He even told about His coming as the 'fulfillment of The Law'. Can you imaging the growing excitement? Wouldn't you want to be close to this marvelous Man of God? I would!
Jesus came for another, more important mission. To honor Father God by redeeming the sin sick people of the world.
The point of reciting these things is to raise the following: What would it look like if God's kingdom broke through more fully in our church and community? A big piece of the answer is God's Will would be done among us with the same joy, passion and drive with which the very angels in heaven respond to God's commands. How can we as God's Immanuel community of believers join Him in pursing our next chapter?
Dear Lord, We want to honor, glorify and serve You in the fulfillment of Your Kingdom, Your Will be done. Please help us become ideally united in understanding Your plan for our faith family and equip us to pursue it. Guide us as we individually and collectively want to share Your Gospel, Your Good News, with those who aren't in a relationship with You and to help each of us grow deeper in our relationship with You. Amen
“That is what worship is all about. It is the glad shout of praise that arises to God the creator and God the rescuer from the creation that recognizes its maker, the creation that acknowledges the triumph of Jesus the Lamb. That is the worship that is going on in heaven, in God's dimension, all the time. The question we ought to be asking is how best we might join in.”
― N.T. Wright
Quote of the Day
“No, I have not asked Jesus to join us. All I hope and long for now is that he will ask me to join him.”
― Elizabeth George Speare
Register Your Team for ILS Trivia NightOur school PTL will be hosting a trivia night for anyone who would like to attend. Everyone is invited! Get your team of 6-8 people together and start thinking of a theme for your table; be creative-best theme wins a prize. The cost to participate is $25 per person. There will be a cash bar, raffle baskets, games, and prizes! All funds raised will go to PTL and classroom needs. Team registration and pizza order forms are available by the church office or online at https://files.logoscdn.com/v1/files/66996890/assets/14470035/content.pdf?signature=A_Fy__TWt5NXpTezfDbhjt738tw. Registration form and payment are due back to the school office by Fri, Feb 24. Fri, Mar 3, 6:00-9:30 PM @VFW-Batavia 645 River St.
Lazarus House Chili Cook-offJoin the fun and help our neighbors at Lazarus House keep warm this February. Bring us your favorite chili recipe in a disposable container--hot and ready to serve--and we will deliver it to Lazarus House homeless shelter in St. Charles. Everyone who enjoys this feast will vote and the winner will receive a special trophy suitable for sharing on social media! Please indicate your intention to provide a batch of chili or, if you prefer, donate any of the other items listed at volunteersignup.org/LDLWC. Lori St.Vincent will be at Immanuel on Feb. 17 at 5:30 PM to accept these donations and will deliver the meal to Lazarus House. Ladies and gentlemen, start your Crock Pots! Fri, Feb 17, 5:30 PM
Moms Connect Lunch GroupMoms Connect is an opportunity to regularly hang out with other moms to discuss “momhood”, God, the adventure of raising kids, and more. Our next event is Sunday, Feb 19 at noon. Bring an item that reminds you of a favorite mom moment and share your story about it; it could be a story about you as a mom, your mom, or your grandma; whatever you’d like to share! We’ll also share parenting tips and talk abut the joys of motherhood:) We’re serving a light lunch and childcare will be available, so please register online so we can plan accordingly: flshare.net/d85wr6 Contact Kari Larsen with questions at firstname.lastname@example.org. P.S. Make sure to save the date for our April 23rd gathering! We’ll be featuring a special guest author and giving out copies of her latest book! Sun, Feb 19, Mar 19 & Apr 23, Noon-1:30 PM @Fellowship Hall
Thy Kingdom Come, Thy Will Be Done: Jesus Invites Others To Join His Journey
While walking by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon (who is called Peter) and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen. And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Immediately they left their nets and followed him. And going on from there he saw two other brothers, James the son of Zebedee and John his brother, in the boat with Zebedee their father, mending their nets, and he called them. Immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him.
Thought for Today
As Jesus begins His ministry in Galilee, He doesn't do it alone, He invites others to join Him. In today's text we see Jesus inviting fishermen; Simon Peter, Andrew, James and John. Miraculously all four respond to Jesus' invitation by immediately leaving their worldly means of livelihood, their boats and fishing gear. James and John additionally leave their father. How might you respond to a complete stranger 'inviting' you to join him in 'fishing for men' and leaving your means of livelihood and even family? The text says they left 'immediately', no time to reflect or think about this invitation. They simply obeyed and followed Jesus. Wow!
Jesus shared the invitation, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”. Jesus invited these humble men maybe because they didn't bring spiritual or religious baggage. We have His Word and are blessed with the gift of literacy and some level of knowledge of His Word. Might Jesus consider us to have some level of baggage? Would He invite me, you?
We live in a different time. We have the gift of the Holy Spirit, We have God's Word in 66 books, The Bible. It's imperative that we be open and ready to join in His ministry, His command to “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”. Hebrews 13:21 tells us that He will 'equip you with everything good that you may do his will, working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.'. So we are to lean upon Him, the Holy Spirit to guide and teach us by opening our heart and understanding as we pray, study, discern and grow in His Word. We are to be ready to share this great gift with others by sharing our story of salvation and transformation. Are you ready? Excited? Anxious? Remember, we are not alone. We have the Holy Spirit and our Immanuel brothers and sisters along side us and cheering us on. The more connected you are the stronger in Him you will be.
Jesus, I want to join in Your invitation to be a fisher of men and women. Help me to understand how I can best join You in this great invitation. Equip me, guide me and bless me with courage and the right words to tell my story of You in my life. Amen
Again Jesus stopped. "Those who love me come from every system that exists. They were Buddhists or Mormons, Baptists or Muslim, Democrats, Republicans, and many who don't vote or are not part of any Sunday morning religious institutions. I have followers who were murderers and many who were self-righteous. Some were bankers and bookies, Americans and Iraqis, Jews and Palestinians. I have no desire to make them Christian, but I do want to join them in their transformation into sons and daughters of my Papa, into my brothers and sisters, into my Beloved."
― William P. Young, The Shack
Quote of the Day
“Ask God to use you. Ask Him to show you how you can be a blessing everywhere you go. Keep honoring Him so that others can see Him through you.”
― Germany Kent
Thy Kingdom Come, Thy Will Be Done: His Kingdom Comes
Now when he heard that John had been arrested, he withdrew into Galilee. And leaving Nazareth he went and lived in Capernaum by the sea, in the territory of Zebulun and Naphtali, so that what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah might be fulfilled:
“The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles— the people dwelling in darkness have seen a great light, and for those dwelling in the region and shadow of death, on them a light has dawned.”
From that time Jesus began to preach, saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”
Thought for Today
Do you remember Isaiah's prophecy from Monday? He foretold of a great light that would come to Galilee, to the people experiencing great oppression. Jesus was that light. He went to this area following John the Baptist's arrest. It was heavily populated with great routes of commerce. His going there fulfilled Isaiah's prophecy and was a great location to begin His formal Ministry as The Light to the world!
His message to everyone was a call for repentance. He preached a message of turning away from sins. Sinning wasn't just NOT follow God's Law. In the Jewish culture, people took this to mean their many Jewish laws also. Jesus begins to unpack God's truth and desire. That being to have all peoples welcome Him into their hearts, to pursue His perfect ways (His Will) for each individual's life. His message was a heart matter vs fulfilling The Law. Jesus' goal was much more transformational than changing behaviors that were not in alignment with The Law. While the text doesn't include His red letter words, my guess is that He talked about Father God as our Creator and the many blessings He provides to all through His creation. That in response for these, His many gifts, we should thank and honor Him.
Do you thank Him for these regularly? We are enjoying the fruits of His Kingdom! Jesus came to reconcile us to Father God. He is the Light-To-The-World through His perfect sacrifice. Everything He did was to honor and glorify Father God. How can we, His Immanuel faith fellowship, grow in our service to Him, to share His light with others?
Dear Abba, Thank you for life and the bounty of Your creation, all the things You provide to sustain life. Thank You for sending Jesus to affirm Your Truth, Your Kingdom and Your Will in His person. Help us to understand how we can join You in sharing His light. We love You!
"But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust."
Quote of the Day
"Every man must do two things alone; he must do his own believing and his own dying."