Grocery Giveaway at Oasis Church… on February 5!

Here’s a little video describing our plan to give away groceries next Sunday, February 5 at Oasis Church… and we need your help to pull it off!! For more details, go to FreeFoodJax.com

Posted in Oasis Church North Florida, Refresh The World

Reasons to join an Oasis Group… part 2

Yesterday, I wrote a post for Oasis Church (and really, any church) about the need for people to be involved in small groups. This Sunday, January 22, we begin our sign-ups for Oasis Groups. These are times where we meet on a weeknight, in either a home or a Starbucks type location, for the purpose of reading God’s Word and praying for each other. This is one of the main ways that we are able to fellowship and show love for each other… the way we get to connect and be the body of Christ!

I shared the first of 6 reasons I believe that groups are important to the church as followers of Christ in the previous post… here are three more compelling reasons (thanks again to Rick Warren for sharing these points!).

4. A small group is the best way to share my God-given mission in the world. When Jesus walked the earth, even He had a small group! Today the church is Christ’s Body on earth. We’re not just to love each other; we’re to take that love together to the rest of the world. We’re his hands, his feet, his eyes, and his heart. He works through us in the world “He creates each of us to join Him in the work He does, the good work He has gotten ready for us to do, work we had better be doing” (Eph 2:10 Msg).

5. A small group will help keep me from spiritually backsliding. None of us are immune to temptation. Given the right situation, you and I are capable of any sin. God knows this, so He has assigned us as individuals the responsibility of keeping each other on track. The Bible says, “Encourage one another daily … so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness” (Heb 3:13).

“Mind your own business” is NOT a Christian idea when it comes to helping each other! We’re commanded to be involved in each other’s lives. If you know someone who is wavering spiritually right now, it’s your responsibility to go after them and bring them back into the fellowship. “If you know people who have wandered off from God’s truth, don’t write them off. Go after them. Get them back” (James 5:19 Msg).

Related to this is the benefit that being connected to a small group provides the spiritual protection of godly leaders. God gives shepherd leaders such as me, the responsibility to guard, protect, defend, and care for the spiritual welfare of his flock. “Their work is to watch over your souls, and they know they are accountable to God” (Heb 13:17 NLT).

  • Again, this is why we say that NO ONE STANDS ALONE! You need me… I need you… we are following Jesus TOGETHER!


6. The Body of Christ needs me
! You have a background and experiences that other people can learn from and draw strength from! God has a unique role for you to play in his family. This is called your “ministry,” and God has gifted you for this assignment. “A spiritual gift is given to each of us as a means of helping the entire church” (1 Cor. 12:7). Your small group is the place God designed for you to discover, develop, and use your spiritual gifts and talents.

Join in and be part of Oasis Church… get in a group, grow in Christ, and help someone else grow in Christ this winter! Sign-ups are this Sunday after church or you can shoot me an email!

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Posted in Love People, Oasis Church North Florida

Reasons to join an Oasis Group this winter…

This Sunday, January 22, we begin our sign-ups for Oasis Groups. These are times where we meet on a weeknight, in either a home or a Starbucks type location, for the purpose of reading God’s Word and praying for each other. This is one of the main ways that we are able to fellowship and show love for each other… the way we get to connect and be the body of Christ!

A couple of weeks ago, I came across some reasons to join a group from an email that I believe was from Rick Warren… let me share a few reasons why you should join a group this winter…
1. A small group moves me out of self-centered isolation… or as we say it at Oasis, No One Stands Alone. It’s the classroom for learning how to get along in God’s family. It’s a lab for practicing unselfish, sympathetic love. You learn to care about others and share the experiences of others and only in regular contact with ordinary, imperfect believers can we learn real fellowship and experience the connection God intends for us to have — Ephesians 4:16 He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.

  • REAL fellowship is being as committed to each other as we are to Jesus Christ: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers” (1 John 3:16). This is the kind of sacrificial love God expects you to show other believers—loving them in the same way Jesus loves you.

2. A small group helps me develop spiritual muscle. You’ll never grow to maturity just by attending worship services and being a passive spectator. One of the main tools of spiritual growth is participation in a small group, where your spiritual muscles get a regular workout.

Over fifty times in the New Testament either the phrase “one another” or “each other” is used. We‘re commanded to love each other, pray for each other, encourage each other, admonish each other, greet each other, serve each other, teach each other, accept each other, honor each other, bear each other’s burdens, forgive each other, submit to each other, be devoted to each other, and many other mutual tasks! These are your “family responsibilities” if you claim to be a part of God’s family. Who are you doing these with?

  • We need more than the Bible in order to grow; we need other believers.
  • When others share what God is teaching them, I learn and grow too!

3. A small group confirms my identity as a genuine believer. I can’t claim to be following Christ if I’m not committed to any specific group of disciples. Jesus said, “Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples” (John 13:35 NLT). When we come together in love as a small group from different backgrounds, ethnicities, and social status, it’s a witness to the world. You’re not the Body of Christ on your own. You need others to express that. Together, not separated, we are his Body.

Check back tomorrow for more reasons to join an Oasis Group… and then follow through, and get connected to a group this Sunday!

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Posted in Love People, Oasis Church North Florida

#21Days of Prayer and Fasting to begin 2012

 

 

Oasis Church is beginning a season of focused prayer and fasting… January 15 – February 5, 2012. We are asking everyone to join us in praying each day and pray specifically for the same things as a church family…

 
Sundays – Our Hearts
Make worship and prayer the priority of your life. Declare your complete dependence on God. Ask for a renewed passion for His
presence and fresh revelation of His Word.

Mondays – Our Purpose
Our purpose is the Great Commission. Pray for people to be saved, connected in a local church, discipled, and operating in their ministry destiny.

Tuesdays – Our City, State, and Nation
Pray for America and the leaders of our country. Pray for Florida and the entire Jacksonville metro area (Governor, the state legislature, courts, mayor and other city officials, schools, police departments, and churches). Pray for revival in our generation.

Wednesday – Refresh the World
Pray for our local serving outreaches, national church planting (ARC), and our international missions efforts (Haiti and Burkina Faso).

Thursday – Our Family
Pray for God’s blessing on your family (spouse, children, grandchildren, grandparents, parents, brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles, cousins, etc.).

Friday – Our Needs
Believe God for answered prayer to your specific needs (finances, health, family members to be saved and other personal needs.)

Saturday – Our Church
Pray for Oasis Church and the ministry that will take place in 2012. Pray for Pastor Jeremy and his family, along with the other team members, small group leaders, and all those who faithfully serve each week.

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Posted in #21DaysofPrayer, Oasis Church North Florida

The Map for 2012 at Oasis Church – Part 3

The third checkpoint to reach our goal of helping people go from where they are to where God wants them to be is to…

Refresh The World – 2012 Goal– Connect Everything To A Soul

  • In heaven, we will see tons of amazing things… and the most exciting is that we will see Jesus face to face!
  • However… We will NOT see a single lost person…we only see lost people here on earth!
  • 2 kinds of people in world… those who are saved (2.5 billion) & those who are lost (4.5 billion)
  • Here on earth, we have the opportunity to help lost people come home…
  • this is the heart of God!
  • Luke 15 – Lost sheep, lost coin, lost son!
  • Sinners welcome here!

John 4:35 – 38 You know the saying, ‘Four months between planting and harvest.’ But I say, wake up and look around. The fields are already ripe for harvest. 36 The harvesters are paid good wages, and the fruit they harvest is people brought to eternal life. What joy awaits both the planter and the harvester alike! 37 You know the saying, ‘One plants and another harvests.’ And it’s true. 38 I sent you to harvest where you didn’t plant; others had already done the work, and now you will get to gather the harvest.”

  • We want to put a GREAT EMPHASIS on winning souls for Christ.
  • We want to be a “harvest church”… to see 10′s, 20′s, hundreds, thousands of people turn from despair and darkness to light and life because of the saving work of Jesus on the cross!
  • We want Oasis to be known for helping all people find their way to the Savior
  • Giving, serving, praying, inviting… whatever it takes! Everyone needs to play…
  • God invites us to love, serve and obey Him and part of the adventure of following Him is to join God in helping people who are lost be found by Jesus!
  • Everything we do is connected to this mission… no one helps someone find Jesus by themselves… team effort!

Oasis Kidz// Teens // Setting Up Coffee and theaters // Greeting // Sound, band, teaching

Small group leading // Praying // Giving

2 Corinthians 5:13 – 15 If it seems we are crazy, it is to bring glory to God. And if we are in our right minds, it is for your benefit. 14 Either way, Christ’s love controls us. Since we believe that Christ died for all, we also believe that we have all died to our old life. 15 He died for everyone so that those who receive his new life will no longer live for themselves. Instead, they will live for Christ, who died and was raised for them.

  • this concept is freeing and empowering… it’s about Jesus!
  • When we love someone deeply, we serve and give gladly… with passion that does not run out…
  • Let’s as a church and a people pray for the love of Christ to empower us and then let Christ’s love compel us to love and lead all people we interact with to Jesus…
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Posted in Oasis Church North Florida, Teaching

The Map for 2012… part 2

Yesterday, I began to share a little bit about where Oasis is going this year… our goal, purpose, end destination is as follows:

Oasis Church exists to love and lead all people from where they are to where God wants them to be…refreshing life in Him!

Here is the second checkpoint on our journey to reach this goal…

Love People  and our 2012 Goal – Foster Healthy Relationships

  • we want to be people who are excited to see each other… those who have been here a while and those who are new… wouldn’t that be great for a church??
  • to be a place, a family, where we get along with each other… there is a unity, a bond of love because of Jesus
  • take time, effort, patience to grow together.. in spite of differences that will arise… to pray for each other… Churches are families, living body…
  • a place where we realize the goals are bigger than us…
  • Jesus has come and we are part of His redemption plan… we are in this together!
  • Healthy relationships set the stage for lifelong friendship…
  • spiritually speaking, the Holy Spirit can be experienced and His power is present when the church is loving each other, according to the Bible!

Ecclesiastes 4: 9 – 12 Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. 10 If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. 11 Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone? 12 A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.

Oasis Church is a place where…No one stands alone”. North Florida needs to see a church that actually loves each other and loves the surrounding community!

Simply, we need each other…we live life better as a team of friends, a family with shared goals than a bunch of individuals…

Oasis Winter Groups begin the week of the 15th… kids, youth, adults will study the Bible together and pray for each other this year! Make sure you get involved, get connected in a group, and make fostering healthy relationships a goal in 2012.

Check back for part 3…

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Posted in Oasis Church North Florida

The Map – Where We Are and Where We Are Going in 2012 – Part 1

I love Google maps…it’s so easy! I love that I can plug-in the address you want to arrive at on my phone (usually, I am looking for the closest Dunkin Donuts!) and it gives me easy to follow, turn-by-turn directions.

After holidays, usually in connection with the New Year… that’s what people do… called “resolutions”. We resolve to end up somewhere different from we are right now in 365 days. We plug-in a desired destination but sometimes fail to figure out the turn by turn directions to have us actually reach where we want to go.

  • We as a church have to continually do the same thing…with that in mind, here is where we want to go as a church, both in 2012 and beyond!

Oasis Church exists to love and lead all people from where they are to where God wants them to be…refreshing life in Him!

  • Some things we say a lot… “No perfect people are allowed…” Everyone is welcome is here… especially sinners!
  • It’s ok to not be ok…it’s not ok to stay that way…” Our teaching will include both grace and growth, love and healing, acceptance and renewal…

To accomplish this overall goal, we need some checkpoints, some road signs that need to be accomplished along the way… here is the first of our 3 checkpoints for 2012.

  • Follow Jesus – He is the Hero… it’s all about Him! 2012 Goal – Hunger for the presence of God

James 4:8 Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world.

John 4:34 Then Jesus explained: “My nourishment comes from doing the will of God, who sent me, and from finishing his work.

Are you hungry for the presence of God in your life?

Do we desperately desire God to work in us, to change us, to grow us as His people this year?

Are we as a church family wanting to be in a ever-growing relationship with our heavenly Father in 2012?

Do we expect to meet with Him each week as we gather… and is it what we want most to happen in our lives?

  • We are challenging each other… let’s be people who are faithfully reading the word of God each day and week of this year…we challenged each person to do this personally, as individuals and families, and corporately as the church body.
  • To help us with this goal… we will be taking 31 weeks this year to teach and read through The Story… this will happen in our teen/adult church services and in Oasis Kidz… our whole church will go through this together… this begins this Sunday, January 15!
  • We also challenge us… to be people who are regularly praying and fasting… personally and corporately
  • 21 Days of Prayer and Fasting – January 15 – February 5

By developing and growing our habits of prayer, fasting, and reading God’s Word, we will grow in our relationship with Him and our desire and hunger for Him will increase… we need more of Jesus in our lives this year! It starts with you and me being willing to invite Him in and making the time and effort to seek God… as we get close to Him, He gets close to us!

Will we see these goals be met in our lives this year? Let’s start today!!

Check back in for part 2 tomorrow…

Posted in Oasis Church North Florida

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