February 13, 2009
Dear Saddleback Family,
I've got a lot to share with you.
One of my goals for you in 2009 is to strengthen you with the good news to counteract all the bad news we're hearing. During our "Year of Getting Connected" I'll be intentionally building your spiritual foundation systematically, week after week. I want you to be UNSHAKABLE! That's why it is absolutely important for you to hear every message this year, even when you miss a service. You need every brick in this foundation to weather this economic storm.
So if you've missed any of my previous 4 messages, you need to take the time to click on each of the links below and watch these messages. It's for your good and growth.
DON'T MISS ANY OF THESE RECENT MESSAGES. WATCH THESE THEN FORWARD THEM TO YOUR FRIENDS:
What Will Heal America? Explains God's three guaranteed promises to turn your situation around IF you follow his four instructions.
A Prayer For Our Nation: shares the six steps to personal, financial, emotional, and national renewal. It also explains the biblical basis behind every sentence I prayed at the Inauguration.
The Prayer of Connection: (Part 1 of the Lord's Prayer series Connecting with God). Many of your hang-ups with God stem from your problems with your own father. But when you know the answer to, "What Kind of Father is God?" you'll love and trust Him. Transforming!
The Prayer of Surrender: Jesus' four strategies for eliminating the stress of uncontrollable circumstances, uncooperative people, and unexplainable pain. Here's the full Serenity Prayer.
THIS WEEKEND: I'm teaching The Prayer of Dependence. "Give us this day our daily bread" (It's God's antidote to your anxieties.) Last year we lost 3 million jobs in America and we'll lose at least that many more in 2009. In January alone, over 650,000 Americans lost their jobs. We're headed into a depression and the solution for you is neither in Washington, nor Wall Street, but the WORD, and trusting God for your needs.
Feb. 21-22: The Prayer of Cleansing: "Forgive us our trespasses..." (God's grace for your guilt)
Feb. 28- Mar. 1: The Prayer of Release: "As we forgive those who trespass against us" (God's healing for your hurts)
Mar. 7-8: The Prayer of Protection: "Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil" (God's protection for your problems)
Mar. 14-15: The Prayer of Blessing: "For thine is the kingdom... power.... glory..." (God's solution to your struggles)
WE HEARD YOU! I'm already making changing based on your feedback last weekend to my "Question of the Week.
Last weekend, we began a new way to hear from you, a new weekly "Question of the Week." Between now and Easter, at the start of each service, we'll ask you one question for feedback. I want to hear from you! I need you to give me your brief suggestion by writing on a response card.
Last week's question was, "What would you like to see in our worship services?" Your suggestions were wonderful and we are going to start a number of new services and times based on your feedback! You'll have over two dozen times and styles to worship at Saddleback.
Of course, with our current 20+ venues and service times, none of our pastors, including me, could possibly speak live at all the services. But your feedback has told us that you learn as much from video teaching as 'live" teaching. Since you enjoy the different times and styles, we now feel confident in adding even more service times and styles of music!
With video teaching we can 1) offer more times to worship, 2) offer more styles of worship music, 3) offer smaller services for those who prefer them, 4) add special features (like in the next paragraph), and 5) save millions of dollars by not having to build a giant building.
Two of the great suggestions you gave last week were 1) serve Communion every week, and 2) have a service where pastors can pray with individuals about personal needs. So, beginning this week, we're adding the Lord's Supper and prayer for any kind of healing to 4:30 pm and 6:30 pm Sunday evening services every week!
OUR SUNDAY 4:30 & 6:30 PM SERVICE BECOME HEALING SERVICES THIS WEEKEND!
With all the pain going on during this recession, you asked for this. So, If you've had a tough week and need encouragement.... if you'd like to take communion every week... if you'd like one of our pastors to pray for your hurts and healing - whether physical, financial, emotional, relational, or spiritual - these two Sunday evening services will now focus on that! You'll still receive my teaching on video, but in addition, I'm commissioning our pastors to pray personally for anyone who wants pray for their hurts. You may bring friends to pray and be prayed for at these two services. Sunday evenings will be high tech (video teaching) and high touch (pastors praying for you & communion.)
- One of the best commentaries on the Inaugural prayer was written by actor Chuck Norris! You can download a Commemorative Edition of the Inaugural prayer to save or share.
- The Purpose Driven Connection magazine is receiving great reviews. Wal-Mart sent us an update: 9,000 magazines sold in 3 days. Have you subscribed yet? Remember, through Saddleback you can subscribe for $19.99 instead of $29.99 and our profit as a church will go to the PEACE plan. I receive no income from this.
- This Saturday morning, I speak at the Los Angeles Mayor's Prayer Breakfast. Also the Chick-fil-A owners and managers are meeting in Long Beach, and Chick-fil-A is becoming a corporate partner in the PEACE plan!
- This weekend the National 40 Days of Love campaign launches across America. They will be using the DVD and curriculum from the PDC magazine. (While they are doing 40 Days, Saddleback is doing our "Connecting With God" series. Pray for all these churches as they begin the journey.
- The media is reporting that two things have risen in our down economy: attendance at churches and bars! Alcohol never solves problems; it only masks them and creates more problems. Your neighbors are dying for an invitation to church. The most loving thing you can do this Valentine's weekend is bring a friend or family with you to meet Jesus.
- By the way, can I brag about you? I am so proud of the spiritual maturity you're showing by continuing to faithfully tithe whatever you have in obedience to God in the midst of this economic uncertainty. It proves your maturity and how much you trust God. Online giving is a fantastic tool for building this spiritual habit. It's smart to tithe in a recession. God promises, "Bring your whole tithe to Me. Test me in this, and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it. I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and will protect your vines from losing their fruit in the time of drought." Malachi 3:10-11
- Every 2 months Saddleback Church works side-by-side with other churches and businesses in Compton to help restore the city. The next Workday in Compton is February 28th. We'll be painting homes, cleaning up parks, and transforming entire streets, while also restoring people on the inside through the formation of relationships with the wonderful people of Compton. Sign up and be a part of the transformation that's going on in Compton.
HAPPY VALENTINES DAY! As Paul wrote, "You know from watching me - my teaching, my way of life, my purpose, my faith in Christ, my endurance, and my love for you!" 2 Tim. 3:10
Purpose Driven Network