Upcoming Events

Hello Friends,

I am having the opportunity to speak next weekend at both Reston Bible Church’s Marriage Booster being held October 13th, as well as the Band of Brothers Men’s Breakfast being held at Christian Fellowship Church in Ashburn, VA the following morning.  Links for the registration to each are listed below.  Would love to see you there. Should be a good time of fellowship and conversation.

October 13th Marriage Booster – https://www.restonbible.org/event/marriagebooster/  (Registration is FREE)

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Band of Brother’s Breakfast – https://www.restonbible.org/event/mensbreakfast/

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Blessed to be a blessing – Psalm 40. Sermon given @ Reston Bible Church

Confidence in Conflict – Psalm 27. Sermon given @ Reston Bible Church

Join us in Israel!

Join Patricia and me in the Holy Land this fall with a team from Reston Bible Church!   http://www.restonbible.org/event/israel

Israel 2017 – Meyers OAW Promo 720 from Open Arms Worldwide on Vimeo.

Family Quest: The Rock – Peak 5 (Lesson 1)

SOUL SHERPA, LESSON 1: THE HOLY SPIRIT IS OUR GUIDE

family-quest-the-rockThe work of the Holy Spirit – To manifest (make known, show) the active presence of God in the world and especially in the church.

Isn’t GPS a great thing? It amazes me that a satellite high above the earth can see me, and when combined with digital mapping software, can tell me how to get from point A to B in the quickest way possible. It amazes me even more to consider that this system can see if there is heavy traffic or an accident along my route and re-direct me around it. If I take a wrong turn, it quickly notifies me. “Rerouting.” But as amazing as this system is, it is only as good as its underlying data. How many times have you followed your GPS directions only to find out that its map data is incorrect and you are at a dead end or the address data is incomplete and you end up in a business park when you wanted to be at a friend’s house? Even when the data is good, it isn’t fool proof. An overcast day or poor cell coverage can knock your GPS out completely.

But there is a guidance system that is 100% trustworthy, 100% of the time. Its data is perfectly reliable. It works no matter how dark it gets because to it, “darkness is as light.” It is an integrated system that lights your path, turns your darkness to light, guides you on the best path possible, reroutes you when you make a wrong turn, and even provides roadside assistance when you break down along the highways of life.

That is our triune God. God’s living Word, breathed out by the Father through the Son is its database. It is empowered by his Holy Spirit whose job it is to make known the active presence of God in the world and especially in his children by guiding us into all truth. Our students need to learn early that they can depend, with ALL their hearts, on their failsafe guidance system. “I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them.” (Isaiah 42:16)

 

BIG IDEA: We can trust God to guide us.

 

MEDITATING ON THE WORD:
Proverbs 3:5-6
Isaiah 42:16
John 8:12
Psalm 119:105
Psalm 23:1-3

SECTION VERSE:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart. Do not depend on your own understanding. In all your ways remember Him. Then He will make your paths smooth and straight. Proverbs 3:5-6

LESSON VERSE:
Guide me in your truth. Teach me. You are God my Savior. I put my hope in you all day long. – Psalm 25:5

PRAYER:
Thank God that Jesus laid down his glory, his power, and his life so that He could become one of us and show us what God is like. Ask Him to help you make Jesus the center of your life every day.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

  • What did you learn today?
  • From our memory verse, what 3 things should we do? What will God do in response?
  • Who is a leader you admire? What makes God the best leader?

LIVE IT OUT!

– – –

ABOUT FAMILY QUEST: At Reston Bible Church, we firmly believe that parents are a child’s first and most important spiritual leader.  In order to support you that mission, we have created a parent devotional and some discussion starters to go along with each lesson your grade school age children are learning at Quest on Sundays. Our hope and prayer is that this material will help you to engage with your children around the topics they are learning on Sunday mornings, answer their questions, go deeper with them, and find real, day-to-day applications. We are honored to be able to partner with you in the critical task of sharing Christ with the next generation.

Family Quest: The Rock – Peak 4 (Lesson 4)

SPOTTER, LESSON 4: GOD IS FAITHFUL TO FORGIVE

family-quest-the-rock“Be imitators of GOD, therefore, as dearly loved children” (Ephesians 5:1)

The Bible makes plain that, when we are reborn in Christ, we are called to be “imitators of GOD,” that is, imitators of his communicable character attributes, those attributes GOD “shares” with his adopted children. We can know the character of our GOD because it is clearly revealed in scripture. Among his many qualities we find that God is loving, patient, kind, good, joyful, faithful, righteous, generous, courageous, creative, and, not least of all, forgiving. These are traits we should strive to imitate. “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” (Ephesians 4:32)

Forgiveness is sweet and grace is a great virtue when we are on the receiving end. It is something to rejoice over. But how things change when we are the “offended” party. Suddenly justice takes center stage and we begin to entertain thoughts about whether the offender “deserves” our forgiveness. We focus on our wounds and wallow in our injuries. We think that the kind of forgiveness Jesus offered his enemies on the cross, “Forgive them for they know not what they do,” is impossible for us to imitate. After all He is God. But this excuse falls apart when we look a few pages further on into the book of Acts and we see Stephen imitating his Lord in the face of a brutal death by stoning. “Lord, do not hold this sin against them!” Can we hope to attain to this level of forgiveness? I’ll let Jesus answer that one. “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” With God’s indwelling Holy Spirit all things are possible.

As we close out this section on forgiveness, we should seek to help the children understand that, on this side of heaven, we are striving to imitate Christ, knowing we will stumble and fall, trusting in his forgiveness when we do, and letting Him pick us up and urge us on to continue the climb He has called us to.

“Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:12-14)

 

BIG IDEA: Forgive others as God forgives you.

 

MEDITATING ON THE WORD:
Ephesians 4:32
Ephesians 5:1
Matthew 6:8-14
Matthew 18: 21-35
Philippians 3-12-14

SECTION VERSE:
But God is faithful and fair. If we admit that we have sinned, He will forgive us our sins. He will forgive every wrong thing we have done. He will make us pure. 1 John 1:9

LESSON VERSE:
Be kind and tender to one another. Forgive each other, just as God forgave you because of what Christ has done. – Ephesians 4:32

PRAYER:
Thank God that He is faithful to forgive us when we choose sin instead of Him. Ask Him to forgive you today for where you have fallen short of His standard. Thank Him for his abounding love for you.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

  • During our study has God shown you any sin in your life? What should you do?
  • Share a time when someone was unkind or unfair to you. Your response?
  • Read and discuss Matthew 18:21-35.
  • What does it mean to imitate someone? How can we imitate Jesus?

LIVE IT OUT!

  • Practice your memory verse (1 John 1:9).
  • Check with your family members to see if you need to forgive or be forgiven by anyone.

– – –

ABOUT FAMILY QUEST: At Reston Bible Church, we firmly believe that parents are a child’s first and most important spiritual leader.  In order to support you that mission, we have created a parent devotional and some discussion starters to go along with each lesson your grade school age children are learning at Quest on Sundays. Our hope and prayer is that this material will help you to engage with your children around the topics they are learning on Sunday mornings, answer their questions, go deeper with them, and find real, day-to-day applications. We are honored to be able to partner with you in the critical task of sharing Christ with the next generation.

Family Quest: The Rock – Peak 4 (Lesson 3)

SPOTTER, LESSON 3: GOD IS FAITHFUL TO FORGIVE

family-quest-the-rockPropitiation (Greek – hilasmos, meaning an offering to appease an offended party.)

How can a God who hates sin so much just let it go unpunished? When He looks at his creation and sees how scarred and polluted sin has made it, He is greatly offended. How can He not pour out his anger on the guilty? How can God let wrongdoers go free? It doesn’t seem fair. Unless, of course, I am the wrongdoer and then my math changes dramatically and forgiveness seems a rather wonderful thing. But the questions are still valid. How is it just to leave sin unpunished?

The short answer is, it wouldn’t be just, if that is what God actually did. But sin has been punished. The sins of God’s people going all the way back to Adam accumulated and accumulated. All the while God in his great mercy withheld punishment, looking forward to a day when One would pay for it all and wipe out the debt once and for all for those who believed in his coming. “God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith. He did this to demonstrate his righteousness, because in his forbearance He had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished.” (Romans 3:25)

The best news is that, not only did Jesus receive the just wages of the sins of all who went before Him, He also made available that credit of righteousness to all who would believe and receive Him in faith in the future. He became our Passover Lamb. The Lamb was slain, that work is done. It is a historical fact that happened completely outside of us and was purely an act of God. The only question that matters now is have you, by faith, applied the blood of the Lamb to the doorposts of your life? Have your students?

Jesus paid it all
All to Him I owe
Sin had left a crimson stain
He washed it white as snow
(Elvina Hall)

 

BIG IDEA: Jesus’ death paid for all our sins and He can make us clean.

 

MEDITATING ON THE WORD:
Romans 3
Psalm 86:5
Ephesians 1:7
Hebrews 10:12,17

SECTION VERSE:
But God is faithful and fair. If we admit that we have sinned, He will forgive us our sins. He will forgive every wrong thing we have done. He will make us pure. 1 John 1:9

LESSON VERSE:
Lord, you are good. You are forgiving. You are full of love for all who call out to you. – Psalm 86:5

PRAYER:
Thank God that He is faithful to forgive us when we choose sin instead of Him. Ask Him to forgive you today for where you have fallen short of His standard. Thank Him for his abounding love for you.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

  • Read Psalm 86:5. How has God like this for you?
  • Why did Jesus have to die for our sins?
  • What does it mean to, “hate the sin and not the sinner?”
  • When God forgives your sin, what does He do with it?

LIVE IT OUT!

  • Practice your memory verse (1 John 1:9).
  • Check with your family members to see if you need to forgive or be forgiven by anyone.

– – –

ABOUT FAMILY QUEST: At Reston Bible Church, we firmly believe that parents are a child’s first and most important spiritual leader.  In order to support you that mission, we have created a parent devotional and some discussion starters to go along with each lesson your grade school age children are learning at Quest on Sundays. Our hope and prayer is that this material will help you to engage with your children around the topics they are learning on Sunday mornings, answer their questions, go deeper with them, and find real, day-to-day applications. We are honored to be able to partner with you in the critical task of sharing Christ with the next generation.

Family Quest: The Rock – Peak 4 (Lesson 2)

SPOTTER, LESSON 2: GOD IS FAITHFUL TO FORGIVE

family-quest-the-rockBen Franklin is quoted as saying, “Guests, like fish, begin to smell after three days.” I think the same thing could be said about sin. If we attempt to hide sin, to cover it up, to “regard” it in our hearts, it is only a matter of time before it will begin to stink up the place. Numbers 32:23 tells us that we can be sure that our, “sin will be discovered. It will be brought out into the open.” In Hebrews 4:13 we are reminded that, “Nothing God created is hidden from Him. His eyes see everything. He will hold us accountable for everything we do.”

So how does sin begin to stink? King David, the subject of our case study, gives us detailed insight into the very real physical effects of un-confessed sin in the life of a believer.

When I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy on me; my strength was sapped as in the heat of summer. (Psalm 32:3-4)

Only when David, after being confronted by Nathan, recognizes his sin for what it is and despises it as God does, does he find forgiveness.

Then I admitted my sin to you. I didn’t cover up the wrong I had done. I said, “I will admit my lawless acts to the Lord.” And you forgave the guilt of my sin. (Psalm 32:5)

Belonging to Christ involves a change of mind, the adoption of a new worldview in which sin is seen through the eyes of God for what it is. Confession begins with seeing and hating our sin. Don’t let sin be a guest in your house.

 

BIG IDEA: Confession begins with seeing and hating your sins.

 

MEDITATING ON THE WORD:
Psalm 32:3-5
Psalm 38:18
Psalm 139:23-24
Numbers 32:23
Proverbs 28:13

SECTION VERSE:
But God is faithful and fair. If we admit that we have sinned, He will forgive us our sins. He will forgive every wrong thing we have done. He will make us pure. 1 John 1:9

LESSON VERSE:
I admit that I have done wrong. I am troubled by my sin. – Psalm 38:18

PRAYER:
Thank God that He is faithful to forgive us when we choose sin instead of Him. Ask Him to forgive you today for where you have fallen short of His standard. Ask Him to help you see sin as He does.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

  • What is your attitude toward sin?
  • How do you feel when you sin?
  • God says He will forgive you now matter what. How does that make you feel?
  • How do you feel when confronted with sin?

LIVE IT OUT!

– – –

ABOUT FAMILY QUEST: At Reston Bible Church, we firmly believe that parents are a child’s first and most important spiritual leader.  In order to support you that mission, we have created a parent devotional and some discussion starters to go along with each lesson your grade school age children are learning at Quest on Sundays. Our hope and prayer is that this material will help you to engage with your children around the topics they are learning on Sunday mornings, answer their questions, go deeper with them, and find real, day-to-day applications. We are honored to be able to partner with you in the critical task of sharing Christ with the next generation.

Family Quest: The Rock – Peak 4 (Lesson 1)

SPOTTER, LESSON 1: GOD IS FAITHFUL TO FORGIVE

family-quest-the-rockConfess – “to say the same thing about.” (Greek – homologéō) and “to make known, declare, tell.” (Hebrew – Yada)

To confess a sin is to uncover it and call it exactly what God calls it. Effective confession must be accompanied by the willingness and desire to turn away from it. Having a “change of mind” about the sin (repentance).

Case Study In Confession

The pattern we see with King David in his sin against God with Bathsheba, the murder of Uriah, the attempt at hiding those sins, the physical results of that attempt, and his subsequent confession in Psalm 51, serves as a case study for God’s promise of forgiveness.

Over the next several weeks we will walk with our students through the hard truth that even David, a “man after God’s own heart,” failed the test and sinned against heaven. Were it not for God’s promise of forgiveness, this reality could cause us to lose all hope of ever being useful in the hands of our Lord. But the truth is that our God is faithful to forgive for the sake of his own Name and, because He is, we can say to God, just as David did, “Let me hear you say, “Your sins are forgiven.” (Psalm 51:8)

 

BIG IDEA: God will forgive us when we confess our sins.

 

MEDITATING ON THE WORD:
1 John 1:5-10
Romans 7:7-25
Psalm 51

SECTION VERSE:
But God is faithful and fair. If we admit that we have sinned, He will forgive us our sins. He will forgive every wrong thing we have done. He will make us pure. 1 John 1:9

LESSON VERSE:
Suppose we claim we are without sin. Then we are fooling ourselves. The truth is not in us. – 1 John 1:8

PRAYER:
Thank God that He is faithful to forgive us when we choose sin instead of Him. Ask Him to forgive you today for where you have fallen short of His standard.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

  • Do real Christians still sin?
  • Why do you think this is true if we are a “new creation”? (Clue: position in Christ at salvation vs. sanctification process)
  • What solution does God provide?
  • What else is promised along with forgiveness?

LIVE IT OUT!

  • Practice your memory verse (1 John 1:9).
  • Think of someone who has done something to you that you didn’t like. Forgive them in your heart and, if it is OK with mom and dad, let them know.

– – –

ABOUT FAMILY QUEST: At Reston Bible Church, we firmly believe that parents are a child’s first and most important spiritual leader.  In order to support you that mission, we have created a parent devotional and some discussion starters to go along with each lesson your grade school age children are learning at Quest on Sundays. Our hope and prayer is that this material will help you to engage with your children around the topics they are learning on Sunday mornings, answer their questions, go deeper with them, and find real, day-to-day applications. We are honored to be able to partner with you in the critical task of sharing Christ with the next generation.

Israel Holy Land Tour

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Friends,

Patricia and I are thrilled to be going with our Pastor, Mike Minter and his wife Kay, to Israel this year and we’d like to invite you to consider joining us.  You’ll hear teaching from Pastor Minter, author Joel Rosenberg, yours truly, and a team of Pastor-Teachers from Reston Bible Church, plus music and teaching from Kelly Minter as we tour the land where Jesus walked.  We are keeping the trip small so it is more intimate and we are 2/3’s full already. If you are interested please go to www.restonbible.org/event/israel to learn more and get registered. We’d love to spend some time with you in Israel!

Blessings,

Mike & Patricia

family photo 2015