Importance

I walked inside my apartment the other day and I noticed how many plants I have, and I thought to myself “when did I become a plant mom?” I am obsessed with cactus or anything in the succulent family, oh and anything green.

Three years ago I wasn’t the person I am now I was in such a dark place just moving and not living. Now I have a love for working out a love of being healthy, it excites me to see the progress I have achieved, it has taken a lot of dedication, a lot of work and it has been worth it. Now I can go inside a boutique and buy something because it fits me. I never imagined that in my future, I ever imagined a whole new person but here I am a new person (who loves plants apparently). I should probably mention that I don’t have a green thumb which is probably why I have many plants just to fool myself into thinking I can keep them alive.

I’m not the perfect plant mom.  I’m not taking good care of my plants, just today I had to throw one out because it was dead. I will be honest I don’t check on them.  I forget to water them and I forget they exist.  I’m working so much that I can’t keep up, I have a full time job and then I make sure I go to the gym. My new lifestyle keeps me moving and neglecting what is around me.

This gets me thinking of what we are neglecting in our spiritual life. How are we keeping our plants from dying? What are we doing to achieve the green thumb? Are we neglecting what’s actually important? Are we putting ourselves before Jesus? Yes my job is important, working out is important, caring for my health is important but JESUS is above it all. He is the reason I work, He is why I have been able to get out of that dark place. He will always be my reason “why”.

Jacqueline Melgares



Forgiveness

Forgiveness.  What was the first thought that came to your mind when you read that word?  No really, take a minute and think about it?  What comes to mind when you see the word forgiveness?

There are few words that elicit a more emotional response than “forgiveness.”  Memories remind us of the pain caused to us and by us.  Those memories sometimes even hold us at the place of offense keeping us from truly moving forward in our lives.

Yet Jesus taught his disciples in Mark 11:25 saying, “And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”  This implies that without giving forgiveness to others we will not be forgiven of our sins by God.  How are we supposed to respond?  What if we don’t know how to forgive?  What if we don’t want to forgive?  What if they don’t deserve to be forgiven?  Is God trying to make us feel like a victim again?

Throughout the month of June we are going to explore what forgiveness looks like for those who follow Jesus.  We will also shed light on the answers the Bible provides to the questions we have about forgiveness.  We can’t let unforgiveness control our lives anymore.  Together we can all take new steps of faith toward forgiveness, healing and wholeness.  Others will need to hear this too.  Who will you invite to join our family journey?

In Him,

Pastor Tim.



Keep on Asking

For a while now, I have been mentoring a high school student and one of my responsibilities is to keep him accountable for his grades.  When we first met, he had low grades on a few of his classes because he had missed some assignments. We meet every Tuesday for at least 30 minutes to check on his progress, now as the school year is about to end he is passing all his classes with good grades. He is not a bad student; he just needed someone to keep him accountable, to remind him that he is not alone and show him that he is important.

His success is not having me as his mentor but rather his success was realizing that he needed help. I wonder sometimes if we are afraid to reach out for help, if the idea of vulnerability is overwhelming to some or simply we are afraid of being judged for our pass. Jesus said in Matthew 7:7 “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for (NLT)” did you notice how it says KEEP ON ASKING. In our discipleship book we have something important called my part.

You might be asking yourself what is my part? And what does all of this have to do with the story I just told you. The student I am mentoring did his part by asking for help; your part could be joining a community group, our discipleship training classes, meeting with someone that can invest in you by disciplining you. God is saying just keep asking and you will receive, don’t give up, you are not alone; you have a church family that cares for you.

If you need help getting connected with someone or you just want to take that first step, you can go to hfcog.org/connect or send me an email at pastordavid@hfcog.org. Let us know how we can serve you; we want to see you succeed; we are cheering for you because you are important.

 

Pastor David

Remember to never accept limitations. 



What Do You Control?

Bosses.  Schedules.  Expectations.  Spouses.  Kids.  Culture.  These things and so many more seem to dictate to us many times what we are going to do, when we are going to do it, and who we will become as a result of it.  It might make you wonder, what do we really control? 

Paul says in Romans 7:15, “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.”  Then in Galatians 5:17 he says, “For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.” 

Do you see the fight for control?  Our flesh is in conflict with the Spirit of God.  We are oftentimes are in conflict with ourselves.  We have aspirations of growing in our faith in Jesus but many times “life” seems to get in the way.  What can we do?

“So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh” (Galatians 5:16).  Truth is, we are going to submit our control to someone or something.  “Self-Control” is only the personal decision to submit yourself in a certain way, but you do not have to be controlled by this world or sin or negative culture or unrealistic expectations.  You can control your submission to God’s Holy Spirit and his Holy Spirit can control your steps, decisions and attitudes.

Invite others to join us this month in worship and Community Groups as we continue to explore things that are stealing our control and how we can submit all of that to Holy Spirit.

In Him,
Pastor Tim.


I just L.O.V.E. Wednesday Nights

I just L.O.V.E. Wednesday nights! I love meeting up at HFC for The Gathering and I really love meeting on the first Wednesday of the month for our prayer meeting.
 
The word fellowship means friendly association, especially with people who share one’s interests. In Greek (“koinōnia”) means “an association, community,” or “communion” which means “with union.”
 
I have received so many blessing from attending The Gathering on Wednesdays. It is where we get together to talk about real life and then have spiritual conversations about real life and what the Bible says about it. The goal is that as we have spiritual conversations together we will learn how to have spiritual conversations with others too.
 
If you have yet to make it out on a Wednesday night, come see what it is all about, I’m sure you will be blessed! We meet at 5:30pm & 7pm in the hospitality room.
 
As we have one purpose to glorify God and further His kingdoms work I look forward to doing it with you!
 
Your Sister In Christ!


Celebrate. Challenge. Control.

Celebrate.  Challenge.  Control.

What do you have to celebrate?    How is God challenging you?    Who is in control of your life?

Sunday was amazing as Adult and Teen Challenge of Texas ministered to us in a powerful way.  They showed us what it looks like to celebrate new life in Christ, how to accept the challenge of saying “Yes” to Jesus, and how to submit control to God.  How should we respond today in light of how God was speaking?

  1. While Adult and Teen Challenge of Texas is not part of our Faith Promise you can still contribute toward them. As they described in the service, they have a sponsorship program in which you can help provide the financial need of one or more of the ladies in the program.
  2. You can celebrate what God has done and is doing in your life by sharing your testimony with others around you. It doesn’t have to be perfect and polished.  Just tell people how God has been good in your life.
  3. Invite someone to join the Control Issues sermon series that starts this Sunday. Just like the ladies from Adult and Teen Challenge of Texas have had to surrender control of their lives so do we.  This series will help us see where we are stealing control from God and how to give it back.
Love you church!
Pastor Tim


Waiting on God

As most of you have heard by now, my house flooded in the February freeze. Throughout the mitigation and renovation process there have been SO many delays! First, so many people in Houston and the surrounding area needed plumbing and mitigation work done, it was really hard to make appointments. Then, once I had a mitigation company come out, we learned they didn’t do a good job and now there was more damage! I finally booked a plumber, and then they lost my appointment and I was delayed again. My insurance desk adjuster was suddenly no longer with the company and my case was waiting for a new adjuster to begin the process all over again. Then a few weeks later, the second desk adjuster was also no longer with the company and we had to start all over AGAIN! It was frustrating, and there were many, “Why God” conversations that went on during these 6 weeks of missed appointments and no return calls. I was so tired of waiting! I was annoyed. I was impatient. I wanted my house back!
 
But do you know what all was happening during that waiting? God was working out SO many blessings for me behind the scenes! The second mitigation company was fantastic! Polite, hard working crew, who came in and cleaned out all the damage and mold and were an absolute delight to work with! They saved my countertops in the demo and took such care in all they did. They actually left my house cleaner than they found it. Then we find out they also do the reno! AND they also have their own in-house cabinet makers who do beautiful custom work. Due to the delay in mitigation from the first company, they ended up having to take ALL the kitchen cabinets and the backsplash in the demo due to mold! What a huge blessing to get to redo the entire kitchen instead of just one cabinet! That is a project I was saving up for and would take a few years, but now – insurance is paying for it! When the plumber made it out, all the demo was done! He didn’t have to cut out any sheetrock because it was already gone! The ceiling too! He was able to walk in and get right to work on the repairs. Because of that, his time/cost was dramatically reduced and I saved a lot of money! There are SO many other ways that God has worked things to my benefit in these situations – I have to praise His name! Thank you Lord!
 
Waiting is hard sometimes. It’s hard to wait and not know why. It’s hard to keep being delayed and have no explanation. It’s frustrating to feel like nothing is working out in our favor. But waiting on God is easy. He is our Faithful Father. He is working behind the scenes even when we can’t see it, or feel it. He is working. We can rest easy knowing that He is still in control and He knows exactly what the outcome will be. Trust in Him, and patiently wait.
 
Many Blessings,


So there I was…

So there I was… sitting in front of my computer wondering what I was going to do next.

I had just attempted to save a document that I had been working on for about an hour.  After hitting “Save” the pop up screen went down and then popped up again.  Again it was asking me if I wanted to save the document.  Looking in the folder I could see the document name that I had just saved and I had made no changes to it so I clicked, “Don’t Save.”  I immediately went to attach it to an email and there was nothing there.

I just sat staring for a bit and in that time so many things went through my head.

                “How could you let that happen?”

                “That was stupid.”

                “Can the document be recovered?”

                “Who can I call for help?”

                “I wonder what I can find online.”

                “That was stupid.”

It can be so easy to get so negative with myself.  However, it hit me pretty quickly that I can’t talk down about myself and celebrate how good God is at the same time.  Truth is, I mess stuff up.  Not just computer documents but life in general.  We all have.  However, life doesn’t get better when I proclaim to myself how bad I am—when I beat myself up.  Nope, life only gets better when I celebrate how good God is in spite of what I lack.

Good News: God is worth celebrating even on bad days and it is that celebration that will get us through those bad days.  Oh, and I was able to recover most of the document.  Look at that, another reason to celebrate!

In Him,

Pastor Tim



Celebrate! Life Changes

As I live in the hope of the resurrected Savior, Jesus Christ, I celebrate the power to live a holy life. As I die each day of self-interests, desires & agendas, I choose striving to live in the power of Holy Spirit. This equips me to be a consummate ambassador for my King. Yes, there are times I succumb to temptations of the flesh, but my eyes are fixed on the Lord with redemptive restoration. Therefore, I MUST depend on a fresh infilling of the divine Holy Spirit each day in my progressive sanctification walk with God. Thank you, dear Jesus, for providing a doable lifestyle of holiness.
 
My life verse from John 3:30 (ESV) sums up my sentiments, “He must increase, but I must decrease.”
 
Boyce Erwin
Tech Team Producer
 
Take a moment…
 
Reflect on the following scripture. 
 
He must increase, but I must decrease. John 3:30 (ESV)
 
How do we decrease so that we are allow Christ to increase in our lives? Is there something in our lives that we will need to change? Do we need to re-evaluate our priorities?
 
Write a prayer asking God to reveal what needs to decrease in your life so that He can increase. Celebrate as you are praying!


Celebrating Easter

We have so much to celebrate now as we look back at this past weekend.   First and foremost, it was just great to be together to remember and celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ!  In our coming together we were able to see so many who have been away from the building throughout the pandemic.  And check out these numbers too… 

  • We had about 25 guests with us for worship
  • There was a total of 165 in the building worshiping together.
  • About 30-50 people have watched the service online so far on Facebook and YouTube.
  • Facebook invite videos were shared 25 times and reached over 500 people!

Now let me be clear, it’s not about the numbers, but those numbers are people—real lives that need Jesus in their lives.  As you prayed for and invited and served and welcomed and loved on each of those lives listed above you helped Connect them to God and the church!  You helped them Commit themselves to God in worship!  You helped them Learn how to take the first step toward being disciples that make disciples! You Influenced the world with the kingdom of God!  You gave us all reason another reason to celebrate!

 

In Him,


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