Story of the Soul

Over the past several month’s much work has been invested into Story of the Soul. This Sunday, when you arrive at New Life, things will be a bit different.

We will have the chairs in the auditorium set up in groups of 5-6. There will be pastries and even more coffee than usual. It will feel a bit like an oversized coffee shop.
SOTS Crowd Wide Shot
During our actual service time there will be two movie clips and one poem presented. A presenter will introduce some context for each piece and then afterward introduce a short discussion.

At the end of our service, Pastor Dave (who began this outreach overseas more than twenty years ago) will close out our time by turning to the Bible for answers.

Many people have worked very hard to provide an environment where non-churched people will feel comfortable and safe to explore Christianity.

We really hope and pray that you will be able to attend tomorrow at 10:45 am.

See you at 10:45 am,

Troy

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Story of the soul…soccer tryouts and hope…

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Our family has survived soccer tryouts. This is no small feat. Hundreds of athletes ascend on multiple soccer fields. It’s hot…stressful…uncertain… and tiring.

Why?

To pursue an opportunity to play with a competitive soccer team.

Every athlete registered for tryouts carries with them a sense of hope.

Hope that they will make the roster of a team…hope that they will play well and impress the coaches…hope that others will see their value. Throughout the course of the week some experienced hope fulfilled…while others were disappointed…nearly everyone at tryouts experiences hope deferred…waiting on pins and needles for a call from the coach.

Hope is a necessary ingredient to a happy life. The absence of hope is path towards discouragement, depression and even death.

So how can we find hope…especially when life seems brutal?

This Sunday, New Life CityChurch is hosting a different type of service at 10:45am. Pastor Dave Robinson and multiple others will be leading a coffee shop experience called, “Story of the Soul.”

Story of the soul is an interactive, coffeehouse experience. Using art, film, music, poetry and other media, we explore the stories the soul of mankind is and has always been telling. This Sunday, we will explore the soul’s longing for hope.

So whether it’s a soccer tryout…a major decision….a tragedy…or a mundane trial of life…if you need a healthy dose of hope, you should come…and bring a friend.

I hope to see you soon,

Troy

Light for disappointing times…

This weekend, Kansas City plays host to the Big 12 basketball tournament. There are people all over downtown sporting their favorite game day gear, full of anticipation that their team will play well and win basketball games.
NCAA Basketball: Missouri vs. Baylor

Coming into this weekend, ten teams of players, coaches and fans are full of hope…dreaming about the possibility of winning the 2016 Big Twelve Basketball Tournament. And with that win, they have an even bigger hope of advancing into the final stages of the NCAA Division I Basketball Tournament.

At the end of this weekend…only one team will still be cheering…nine will be struggling with disappointment.

Unfortunately, disappointment doesn’t just happen after losing basketball games…there are many different circumstances that make us feel the pain that results from missed expectations.

Fortunately, we have been given a Guide that is especially good at walking us through these times in life.

This Sunday, we continue our Easter Series with a sermon from John 8:12. Jesus is the light of the world. He is literally (in my best Chris Traeger voice :)) the most superior guide for life.

So whether its a disappointing loss, a disappointing day at the office or even at home…Jesus is the light of the world and longs to be your guide.

On stage…

Alexa, Sophia and I had a pretty cool experience this past Sunday evening. A good friend invited us to attend Winter Jam with him and when the girls found out that Matthew West was performing, they were pumped. When they found out that we might be able to meet him, they were beaming.

When we arrived at the Sprint Center there were people everywhere…thousands of them…

lines at winter jam

We made our way to the back side and found a flag that said Guests…and waited.

After several minutes, Pastor Joe West walked out the door and escorted us past all the people in line to a floor level seat.

After a while, he came by to bring us back stage to meet his son, Matthew. He was as kind and gracious as you could imagine.

After chatting for a bit, Pastor West asked Sophia if she would like to go on stage…oh yeah!

Then we waited…

Finally, during his song, “Child of the One True King”, Matthew West brought Sophia and another boy on stage along with Dayton Moore, General Manager for the Kansas City Royals in front of thousands of people to jump and sing.

Matthew West and Sophia

As I reflect on that experience, I am reminded that Sophia did nothing to deserve that opportunity. She showed no special skills….though she did jump pretty nice when she got up there :). She can sing nicely, but she wasn’t chosen because of that…nor was she chosen because she paid a lot of money for the opportunity (we actually got in free :)).

She was given access to the stage and the microphone to speak through a person and not a performance.

The same is true with God…we are promised grace to overcome opposition, justice to overcome condemnation and love to each beyond any separation…through the person of Jesus.

If you have experienced some trials or are in the midst of tough times, then our study from Romans 8:31-39 is going to be just was the Doctor ordered. I hope you can join us at 10:45am for a time of worship and study as well as some encouraging relationships.

I can’t promise you that Matthew West will show up….but I am confident you will experiences Someone even better. Have a great weekend,

Troy

United…

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This Sunday I am excited to continue a five week series from Romans chapter 6 entitled, “The effect of grace.” Grace seems to be a word that is used so often that maybe…just maybe we have lost a bit of its power. So last week we studied the first effect of grace and that is, “we are baptized with Christ.” This week it is the second effect of grace from Romans 6:5-11 and that is, “we are united with Christ.”

The idea of being united is pretty amazing. And to be united with Christ is even more amazing.

This past week I have experienced the concept of being united firsthand.

It was a privilege to be a part of @mycitymatters. In case you haven’t heard, three church youth groups met up downtown Kansas City for a missions trip to our city.

50 kids plus nearly 20 sponsors moved in to 1717 McGee, KCMO 64108 otherwise known as New Life CityChurch. The change in social behavior from Sunday night to Friday night has been remarkable. On Sunday, most of the kids were unsure of themselves and the unknowns of the week. By today, they have bonded by working together, playing together, eating together and pretty much living together all week.

Friendships have been forged.

Project have been completed.

Spiritual changes have been experienced.

They have met people off the street, in homeless camps, at baseball clinics and carnivals. They have sweat, cried, laughed, complained and been filled with gratitude.

The time they have spent together has increased their trust in each other and wiped out unnecessary barriers.

No matter how you slice it, they are united. And this means they have each other’s back…they also share in a passion to be a part of change in Kansas City…even more than that, they desire to see Jesus run this town.

This week has taught me a lot…one lesson in particular is that I have been able to witness what it means to be united. This Sunday, I look forward to digging deeper in to Romans 6:5-11 to find out more about what it means to be united with Christ.

For now, keep praying for the teens and leaders to finish strong and I look forward to seeing you on Sunday,

Troy

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My City Matters

This past week had been filled with preparation for the 4th annual @mycitymatters missions trip to KC.

It all started at lunch…“Wouldn’t it be awesome if 500 young adults came and spent time learning about and serving the city’s hopes, dreams and needs?”

And so My City Matters began. Launched as a partnership of two churches, one suburban; one downtown, My City Matters has grown into a movement that brings several churches together and serves local organizations that are already working to address core issues.

Simply put, it’s a missions trip to the city…from the city!

This summer is going to be AWESOME. Some of our partners include:

Over the course of one week, our teens and sponsors will visit homeless camps, hold baseball clinics for urban kids, perform work projects in shelters and churches, tour non-profits in the urban core, worship, laugh, eat and maybe sleep…if they’re lucky :).

There are still many ways to get involved so if you would like to participate or volunteer in the project, please go to: http://www.mycitymatters.org and click on the “Let’s Talk” tab.

On another note, this Sunday, we welcome Jordan Marcotte as a guest worship leader. The elders have been in conversation with him for several weeks and this Sunday is a final stage of the interview process.

In addition, Pastor Dave Robinson will bring a sermon from Romans 5:12-14, 17 entitled, “The reign of grace and life.”

Finally, we look forward to our New Life CityChurch quarterly communication immediately following the morning service. There will be a light lunch and childcare provided.

I hope you have a great weekend…not only does our city matter…YOU MATTER!!!

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Anticipation…

This past week we were able to make a visit to the KC Zoo with some very close friends. It just so happened that rain was in the forecast (hard to believe, huh :)?).

We have an annual pass with all the rides included (the kids got to me on a good day), so we made a bee line for the tram over to Africa. As soon as we arrived, it looked pretty dark so we immediately got in line for the Sky Safari and jumped on. By the time we got off, the sky continued to grow darker so we hurried to see as many animals as possible.

Since we anticipated rain, we moved along…as fast as you can with nine people including five kids. When we got back to the Sky Safari for our ride back we found out it was closed due to lightening.

We kept pace as we looked at animals and walked back towards the safety of the shelter…every step we anticipated a down pouring of rain. It seemed like we would look up at the sky, back at the kids and ahead to the next area of shelter.

We finally made it out of Africa with only a few drops of rain and hopped on the tram to take us back to the zoo entrance. It cleared a bit and we even were able to jump on the merry go round…adults and all. The ride operator was dramatic, entertaining and funny…I would give her the grade of awesome…watching and listening to her was even better than the ride itself. In fact her pre-ride speech was longer than the ride.

Anticipation!!!

That is the word for the day.

The anticipation gave us plenty to talk about before, during and after our zoo adventure.

Anticipation is healthiest when it is powered by hope and optimism with a dash of reality.

This Sunday, we will distribute an overview of the New Life CityChurch vision, mission and values that has been in the formation process for the past ten months. We will discuss it in depth at our member meeting on June 14th right after the morning service.

I would have to say that I have been anticipating this for a long time and am so excited to share.

Speaking of anticipation, Pastor Dave will bring a sermon from Romans 5:9-11…part two of Strange love-strong love. I was away during part one and from what I hear, it’s worth coming back for part two :).

Anticipating all that God has for our church this Sunday and in the future,
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