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Looking Ahead



Friends,

I hope this email finds you well. I have been reflecting this week on a few changes in life. It has been almost five months since I began this new call as Associate Pastor at First Pres. The call has brought with it an abundance of change, changes in setting, relationships, and responsibilities to name a few. It has been exciting, daunting, invigorating, and humbling, sometimes in the same breath. One of the many challenges has been time management: how to put first things first and how to prioritize and protect time for those tasks this church has called me to perform.

A practice I have found helpful is weekly and sometimes daily schedule planning. Early each Monday morning I grab a cup of coffee, sit down with the schedule for the week and spend about an hour making time for those things you all have called me to do. It would seem counterintuitive to spend more time to make time, but it works! In my own journey of spiritual formation I have found many things to be this way, counterintuitive.

Last week Patrick prompted us to consider the question: who is Jesus? This was done through two different lenses. (1) Who do other people say that Jesus is? (2) Who do you say that Jesus is? How have you answered those questions? What informs your understanding of who Jesus is? Is it informed by the world? The culture? Your neighbor? History Channel specials? Popular literature? Or Scripture?

The next three weeks we will examine three passages of scripture from the Gospel of Mark: Mark 9:30-37Mark 9:38-50 and Mark 10:2-16. In each passage, Jesus will challenge our conception of who the world says He is and who we believe Him to be. We will dive into these texts, God’s gift to us, with the understanding we are dealing with words written 2,000 years ago, in a place more than 6,000 miles away, in a culture very different from our own.

I’m excited to explore these words together, and I believe they paint a picture of a Jesus who leads, teaches, and loves counterintuitively.

See you there,

Nic