Saturday, December 31, 2005

Read the Bible in 2006

I could say, "Read the Bible in 2006." Or, I could say, "Get God's wisdom for your life." Or, I could say, "Find comfort for your soul." Or, I could say, "Expand your view of who God is and what He can do in your life." No matter how I said it, I'd be saying the same thing. So, let me say it specifically:

Let's as a church read one chapter of Proverbs and one Psalm every day in 2006.

The Proverbs plan is a simple, no-guilt plan. On the first day of the month read the first chapter of Proverbs. On the second day, read the second chapter. On the third day, read the third chapter. . . etc.. There are 31 chapters in Proverbs. So you'll read it 12 times. There is more wisdom in that book than can be gained in 12 readings.

The Psalms reading plan is equally simple there are 150 chapters. Accounting for more than two months of missing (ouch!) you can read the book of Psalms twice in the year. You will find your heart enriched by God's inspired song book.

If you already have a personal Bible reading program, consider adding this as a family reading program. It should only take less than 10 minutes a day to read aloud.

Wouldn't it be great to be talking with people from church and be able to reference something you know they are reading?!

2005 Top Ten

As we look back on 2005 it is good to remember the Lord’s faithfulness to our church in the big and little things. To that end I’ve come up with a top-ten list. If you’ve got others add please them in the comments below.

Drum roll please. . .

10. The blog started. :o)
9. Tim Watt joined the New Life Church staff in the nick of time. Just weeks before launch he became the worship leader for New Life Robinwood.
8. Received two mission teams from Salado, Texas, demonstrating what we’ve known all along – we live in the mission field.
7. Paid off over $400,000 on the Robinwood building mortgage and built a parking lot there through many generous gifts and by selling two of our rental houses!
6. Anniversaries: We celebrated 10 years of service for Coffee Cart (on what was their 11th year) and 10 years for our Christmas Dessert Theater.
5. Baptisms: We baptized 22 people this year – the most in the past 20 years. On August 28th at the Haugens 13 people followed Christ in baptism, 11 of whom were middle schoolers. We had baptisms on both Easter and on Christmas this year.
4. Started two new things for kids! We added Sports Camp to Music Camp during the summer and started Treasure Island midweek ministry in the Fall.
3. Sent 16 New Life members on short term mission trips all around the world. Lori & Carol went to Ukraine. Nate & Aaron went to Malaysia. Five renewed our friendship with the church in Ostia, Italy. And a seven-member team went to Pass Christian, Mississippi. Among other things that happened on that trip, they had the biggest mission potluck ever for their report.
2. Changed the name of the church. On Easter Sunday morning West Linn Baptist church became known as New Life Church, with the anticipation of being in as many as four locations within West Linn before long.
1. Started a new church in West Linn! The Robinwood congregation began regular services on September 25, 2005!

Friday, December 30, 2005

New Life Church New Years Day

All of New Life Church, from both locations, will be gathering at Marylhurst University for our a combined serive at 10:00 a.m. on Sunday Morning, January 1, 2006. There will not be Sunday School or Childcare. The New Year's Message will be from Psalm 1:

Psalm 1:1-6 Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. 2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night. 3 He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers. 4 Not so the wicked! They are like chaff that the wind blows away. 5 Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous. 6 For the LORD watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.
I hope to see you there.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

A Prayer for Year's End

O Love beyond compare,
Thou art good when thou givest,
when thou takest away,
when the sun shines upon me,
when the night gathers over me.

Thou hast loved me before the foundation of the world,
and in love didst redeem my soul;
Thou dost love me still,
in spite of my hard heart, ingratitude, distrust.

Thy goodness has been with me during another year,
leading me through a twisting wilderness,
in retreat helping me to advance,
when beaten back making sure headway.

Thy goodness will be with me in the year ahead;
I hoist sail and draw up anchor,
With thee as the blessed pilot of my future as of my past.
I bless thee that thou hast veiled my eyes to the waters ahead.
If thou hast appointed storms of tribulation,
thou wilt be with me in them;
If I have to pass through tempests of persecution and temptation,
I shall not be drown;
If I am to die,
I shall see thy face the sooner;
If a painful end is to be my lot,
grant me grace that my faith fail not;
If I am to be cast aside from the service I love,
I can make no stipulation;
Only glorify thyself in me whether in comfort or trial,
as a chosen vessel meet always for they use.

Valley of Vision, p. 111.

Well Said, Wilbur!

Christian! It is not the ship in the water,
but the water in the ship, which sinks it.
So it is not the Christian in the world,
but the world in the Christian,
which constitutes the danger.

Anything which dims my vision of Christ,
or takes away my taste for Bible study, or
cramps my prayer life, or makes Christian
work difficult, is wrong for me, and I must,
as a Christian, turn away from it!

--J. Wilbur Chapman

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Winter Youth Celebration Update

Pastor Jason wrote the following in an email from Winter Youth this afternoon:

So far we are having the time of our lives out here at Jantzen Beach. The theme this year is “We Shall Behold Him: Life as Worship.” The speakers have been incredible, inspiring, and unbelievably encouraging!

Yesterday we were split up between Freshman & Sophmores and Juniors & Seniors. However, the basic message to the two groups was basically the same: Life your life as a mission to show the rest of the world who God is. The following discussion in our group was very insightful! The observations and questions raised by teens amazed even me!

The keynote speaker has been encouraging us to (1) recognized our lives as designed for the specific purpose of worshipping God (“The most loving thing God will ever do is allowing us the opportunity to worship Him.”), and (2) realize that a proper understanding of the Gospel opens the door wide open to making our lives an act of worship (“If you get the Gospel, you can worship God in any and every setting and situation at any time.”).
Please continue to pray for our students.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Joanne Snyder -- 1921-2005

Last night we attended a blessed memorial service for Joanne Snyder. Her son, Tim, and her daughter-in-law Karen, still attend New Life. Joanne had a wonderful life of following Christ. One thing we all learned is that her husband, Earl, was Nancy Ross's Sunday school teacher many years ago in Lakewood, WA. Turns out he had a profound influence on her. No one made the connection until last night.

Here is her memorial folder if you'd like to read more about her life. The hope of the gospel is a wonderful thing at a memorial service. Her is the scripture text that formed the basis of the message at the service:

Titus 3:4-7 But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, 5 he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, 6 whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

I'm not infected, but I'm getting sick.

I don't have the flu (like my wife). I don't have a cough and runny nose (like my daughter). I don't have a temperature (like my other daughter). But, I'm sick.

I haven't even caught a computer virus. But, I am receiving email generated by somebody's computer virus at the rate of over 500 per 8 days! I haven't caught the virus myself, but I'm worn down, nearly sick, of getting so much unwanted email. The subject lines read:

hi, ive a new mail address
Paris Hilton & Nicole Richie
Your Password
Your IP was logged
Registration Confirmation
. . . or some close variation on them. McAfee says it is the W32/Sober@MM!M681 virus. It's OK to click the link, it is McAfee's explanation about the virus.

One of my new year's resolutions is to not get infected with a virus. So, if I can ask this politely, would you please cover your computer's mouth when it coughs, and don't put it in the nursery with a runny nose, and make it wash its hands after its been in public (i.e., run a virus scanning software to see if you might have it). Here's to the good health of people and machines in the New Year!

NL Robinwood Christmas

Merry Christmas from NL Robinwood!

Isaiah 9:6 For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Emmanuel! God came!

An Unforgettable Christmas

This Christmas morning Santa was upstaged by Derrick Elkins declaring himself a Christ-follower by being baptized. Christmas only falls on Sunday every six years but Derrick made the most of it. He shared how he had trusted Christ, but hadn't done much to pursue his relationship with Christ -- until he was part of our Katrina relief team. One Bible study in particular spoke to him. It was from 1 Corinthians 9:24-27 --

Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.
He realized the prize of knowing Christ was worth a whole-hearted pursuit. Derrick, Merry Christmas! Follow hard after Christ!

Look at his smile!Derrick Elkins, raised to newness of life

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Merry Christmas from the Reavely Family

Have a blessed Christmas. May all the joy of heaven be yours because of Jesus!
The Reavelys

Friday, December 23, 2005

St. Augustine on Christmas

The Word of the Father, by whom all time was created, was made flesh and was born in time for us. He, without whose divine permission no day completes its course, wished to have one day for His human birth. In the bosom of His Father He existed before all the cycles of ages; born of an earthly mother, He entered upon the course of the years on this day.

The Maker of man became man . . .
that He, Ruler of the stars, might be nourished at the breast;
that He, the Bread, might be hungry;
that He, the Fountain, might thirst;
that He, the Light, might sleep;
that He, the Way, might be wearied by the journey;
that He, the Truth, might be accused by false witnesses;
that He, the Judge of the living and the dead, might be brought to trial by a mortal judge;
that He, Justice, might be condemned by the unjust;
that He, Discipline, might be scourged with whips;
that He, the Foundation, might be suspended upon a cross;
that Courage might be weakened;
that Security might be wounded;
that Life might die.

To endure these and similar indignities for us, to free us, unworthy creatures, He who existed as the Son of God before all ages, without a beginning, deigned to become the Son of Man in these recent years. He did this although He who submitted to such great evils for our sake had done no evil and although we, who were the recipients of so much good at His hands, had done nothing to merit these benefits.
St. Augustine, Sermons on the Liturgical Seasons

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

A Christmas Present?!?

The works of Matthew Hole found its way mysteriously into my office and was sitting on my desk this morning. It is a 1732 edition! Wow! I have been trying to find out who put the book there and who Matthew Hole is. I found a little about him. He is a non-conformist, Puritan, pastor in England in the early 1700's. He was a favorite of Charles Spurgeon. And, above all he was a God-Treasurer. Read the quote below and see for yourself:

This praising God rests not in the mere speculation or idle contemplation of the Divine excellence, floating only in the brain, or gliding upon the tongue, but in such quick and lively apprehensions of them as to sink down into the heart, and there beget affections suitable to them; for it will make us love him for his goodness, respect him for his greatness, fear him for his justice, dread him for his power, adore him for his wisdom, and for all his attributes make us live in constant awe and obedience to him. This is to praise God, without which all other courting and complimenting of him is but mere flattery and hypocrisy...God Almighty endowed us with higher and nobler faculties than other creatures, for this end, that we should set forth his praise; for though other things were made to administer the matter and occasion, yet man alone was designed and qualified to exercise the act of glorifying God...In short, God Almighty hath so closely twisted his own glory and our happiness together, that at the same time we advance the one we promote the other. —Matthew Hole, 1730.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Missions Fest Northwest

Last Sunday we had the highest participation we've ever had at one of our missions potlucks. The Katrina Relief Team showed slide of what Hurricane Katrina did to Pass Christian. They also showed slides of the work they did. The most moving part of the presentation was their testimony of what God did IN them through this experience.

You may be interested to learn more about what God is doing throughout the world. The best opportunity I can think of is on the horizon. Missions Fest Northwest, January 20-21, will feature dynamic speakers, presentations of mission organizations and hundreds of people to talk to about God's work throughout the world. If you missed the potluck last Sunday, don't despair. :o) This will another chance to hear of God's work around the world.

On a separate missions note, Nate and Aaron arrived home safely last night. They will probably be writing more about their experience on their blog Aaronate. So check it again soon.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Pastor Brian Janssen resigns.

The serious side of Pastor BrianThe not-so-serious side of Pastor BrianIt has been a hard week for many as they have learned of Pastor Brian's resignation. He will be moving to Bethel Baptist Church in McMinnville to serve as the Pastor of Music and Worship beginning the first of February.

Brian's ministry has been much loved and appreciated over the past eleven years. Here is a link to his letter of resignation to the church. Here is Pastor Scott's letter that was sent in the same envelope.

We will have a reception for the Janssens to celebrate with them and to say thank-you on January 8th at 5:00p.m. at New Life Church Riverfalls. If you would like to begin leaving messages of appreciation as comments below, please do.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

All Praise To Thee, Eternal Lord

2 Corinthians 8:9  For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.

All praise to thee, eternal Lord,
Clothed in a garb of flesh and blood;
Choosing a manger for thy throne,
While worlds on worlds are thine alone.

Once did the skies before thee bow;
A virgin’s arms contain thee now;
Angels who did in thee rejoice
Now listen for thine infant voice.

A little child, thou art our guest,
That weary ones in thee may rest;
Forlorn and lowly is thy birth,
That we may rise to heav’n from earth.

Thou comest in the darksome night
To make us children of the light,
To make us, in the realms divine,
Like thine own angels round thee shine.

All this for us thy love hath done;
By this to thee our love is won;
For this we tune our cheerful lays,
And shout our thanks in ceaseless praise.

-- Martin Luther, 1524.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

The December Voice

The New Life Church Voice for December is here. Click on the graphic to read it.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Katrina Team Potluck

This Sunday at 12:15 p.m. at New Life Church Riverfalls we willl have a potluck to hear an official report from our Katrina Team that recently returned from Pass Christian, MS. We'll have lunch and then see pictures of the devastation and the work.

For the potluck, if your last name begins with A-K bring a main dish and a salad, L-Z bring a main dish and a dessert. See you there.

Everything is a mess!With love to Bible Fellowship ChurchNew Life Servant, Merle Ross, at work in Mississippi

Christmas Dessert Theater 2005!

We completed our 10th Christmas Dessert Theater! What a great weekend. Thirty-nine people asked for prayer because God is working in their lives. Eight different people are interested in knowing more about the church. Here are some pictures to help you remember.

The Chipmunks visit West Linn
New Life Church West Linn Choir
Children of New Life Church
12 Days of Oregon Christmas
A Child like me!
Thank you to all of you who worked so hard and sacrificed so much to make it a wonderful weekend.

House #2 SOLD!

Praise the Lord! We have sold our second house, 5494 Broadway Street. The Lord provided buyers the same day He provided a place to move for the family that lived in the house. It could not have worked better for the church or for the family.

The church netted $230,000 from the sale of this house. We purchased it in 1999 for $145,000.

Thank the Lord. Because of the substantial overrun on the parking lot at Robinwood, however, we still have approximately a $7,000 balance on our mortgage. If anyone would like to give to completely retire the mortgage, this would be a great year end project.

A little late but worth mentioning!

Thanksgiving 2005 - New Life Servants!

15 people from New Life Robinwood prepared food and served a Thanksgiving meal to the residents of Cascade Summit Apartments on November 19th. Close to 100 people ate an awesome meal with 5 turkeys, mashed potatoes, stuffing and numerous deserts. The clubhouse was transformed into a dining room with round tables making a very relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere for the dinner. One resident commented after Thanksgiving, "Our family dinner was ok, but the Cascade Summit dinner was amazing!"
And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Col 3:17

Monday, December 12, 2005


A Christmas Caroling Outreach Party

When: Thursday December 15th
6:30 PM

Where: New Life Robinwood
19915 Old River Drive

What to Bring: Home Made Cookies to Give Away

What will we do: We will be caroling to our neighbors here in West
Linn and giving them invitations to our Christmas
worship services. Then, we will all return to New
Life Robinwood for finger foods and hot chocolate.

Questions: Contact Pastor Nathan or Sara (503)699-2027

Saturday, December 10, 2005

The Joy of New Life!

When we made the decision to become a multi-site church, our primary motivation was to see more people come to know Christ. We had no idea who God would draw to himself, but we trusted that this was the direction He was leading us. It has been such a joy to see the faithfulness of God in bringing people into the new life! This has been one of our largest baptism years in recent history. It is so exciting to see people coming to Christ and being baptized at both New Life Church locations.

The most recent baptism was last weekend at New Life Robinwood. Mark Done (see picture below) came to Christ after coming to New Life Church by the invitation of his neighbors Andy and Aaron Doyle. They steadily loved him and shared the good news with him. He shared in his testimony that he was at the end of his rope when Christ came to save him. Praise God for a loving and faithful savior.

Please pray that God would continue to draw more and more people to himself through the ministry of New Life Church!

Thursday, December 08, 2005


Is anyone going to the new Disney Narnia Movie?

I'd love to get a report from some advance spies. Please comment below with your thoughts on the new movie.

New Life Church Is Open For Christmas!

Here is an interesting article about churches not holding services on Christmas Sunday entitled The Empty Churches of Christmas. It was written in response to news articles like this one from Fox News.

A few churches in our area are between a rock and a hard place because they meet in schools and can't lease the school buildings on a contract holiday. But, several others in our area are cancelling church on Christmas Sunday.

Wise men, shepherds, old men and women, aunts and uncles, and angels all had one response to the birth of Jesus -- Worship. The cancellation of church services is every bit as interesting a phenomenon as the outcry against Target, Walmart, and others calling their trees, "Holiday Trees."

Here is a recent Oregonian opinion piece about that phenomenon. As you might expect some people reacted strongly to that piece. Maybe we should just put the "X" back in Xmas.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Church on Christmas Weekend

Our schedule for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day at New Life Church will be as follows. We will have five services:

Christmas Eve:
4:30 & 6:00 at New Life Church Riverfalls.
6:00 at New Life Church Robinwood.

Christmas Sunday morning:
10:00 a.m. at New Life Church Riverfalls.
10:30 a.m. at New Life Church Robinwood.

The Christmas Eve services will be the same as the Christmas Day services. If you go to one location both times you will experience the same service.

This may be a good opportunity to visit the location you don't normally attend. Go to one location on Christmas Eve and the other on Christmas Day.

I trust your worship of the Savior will be sweet this Christmas.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

What Guys Are Saying About Men's Ministry!

New Life Men making disciplesHere is what a few of the men are saying about the Men’s Leadership Teams:

I’ve been participating in the Men’s Leadership Ministry studies for almost a year and my life has been changed. These studies with the specific purpose of developing men into godly leaders have altered my relationships at home, community, and church. I am a better husband, father, and neighbor, and an outgoing Christian. Much more active in seeking His Word, in obedience and in being the Godly leader He expects me to be. I am grateful that the days of passively going to church and occasionally reading the Bible have been replaced with a yearning to understand His way and the faith to “get off the couch’ and be passionate for God.


It was past one o’clock in the morning. I had finished my study, in a few hours I would be getting up to head for our Men’s Group. My wife suggested, “Why don’t you just skip it this time? You never miss.” I thought about it for a few seconds and replied, “I don’t want to not go.” I realized that sometimes I don’t “feel like” praying, or reading my Bible, or even going to church. Sometimes I just don’t do it. But I never have to make myself go to the Men’s Leadership Group. It is hard to put my finger on why. There is acceptance and encouragement that I have not seen in other groups. The material is awesome. The men in our group make it so much more than a Bible study. Anonymous

Just as iron sharpens iron, the men of my group help keep me accountable and continue to assist me in becoming the man God intended me to be. Their prayers, encouragement and wisdom have been critical during my transformation.

M. P.

I’ve come to realize that the Christian walk for most is difficult to go alone without stumbling and without the help of others who desire to know God’s will. Men’s Leadership Ministries has developed true discipline in my life through weekly Bible Study, prayer, and

meeting with other men who are accountable to each other in knowing God’s will. This has caused a deepening of my relationship with my Heavenly Father and a strong desire to know Him better. T. S.

If you'd like this kind of thing to happen in your life you will want to contact Pastor Bill Kramer: 503-650-6899,

Sunday, December 04, 2005

ST missions

New Life Church co-missioningYesterday the team from Pass Christian was back in the service and we look forward to hearing about their trip. By all accounts it was a great trip. They got back at midnight on Saturday night.

This Sunday we comissioned Nathan Hanson and Aaron Anderson to work with young people in Malaysia for the next couple weeks.

Scott Haugen reminded us that a comissioning is just that a "co-mission". We are on mission together with the people we send out, with each other. Nate & Aaron left yesterday, but all of us are co-missionaries with them today.

If you want to follow their activities on their trip you can read their blog. There is a link to their blog on the New Life Church's website, too.

The Lord's Supper

In a warning to professing Christians, Jonathan Edwards encourages them to examine themselves. Particularly, he suggests, when it comes to the Lord's Supper. Here is how he describes it:

. . .the Lord's Supper, that holy ordinance, instituted for the special commemoration of the greatest and most wonderful of all divine acts towards mankind; for the special and visible representation of the most glorious and wonderful things of our religion; for the most solemn profession and renewal of your engagement to God, and for special communion with Jesus Christ (Devotions from the pen of Jonathan Edwards, p. 75).
He identifies four purposes of communion:
  1. Special commemoration of the most wonderful of all God's acts toward mankind.
  2. Visible representation of the most glorious things of our religion.
  3. Solemn profession and renewal of your engagement to God.
  4. Special communion with Jesus Christ.
May your heart always be warm toward God when you remember the Lord's death until he comes again.

Friday, December 02, 2005

You Might Be Emerging If...

Have you ever wondered what the Emerging Church is? It has been difficult to define. Here is a tongue-in-cheek pictorial description of what has become know as the Emergent church.
You Might Be Emerging If...

Thursday, December 01, 2005


There is a big difference between sanctification and sanctimonious!
-- John Ortberg

Study On Ephesians Is Ending Sunday!

Sunday Pastor Scott will complete his series on the book of Ephesians with a look at the blessing of God in the benediction:

Ephesians 6:21-24 Tychicus, the dear brother and faithful servant in the Lord, will tell you everything, so that you also may know how I am and what I am doing. I am sending him to you for this very purpose, that you may know how we are, and that he may encourage you. Peace to the brothers, and love with faith from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Grace to all who love our Lord Jesus Christ with an undying love.
My goal in this series was to shine a spotlight on the grace of God that creates a healthy church that in turn starts other churches. Ephesians is foundational to church life and mission. During the almost year and three months we've been studying the foundation for a healthy church, New Life Church has changed its name, sent out 20 short term missionaries, started another congregation and had over 50 people sign up to read the Bible everyday. By God's grace we are experiencing more of the church life that Ephesians describes.

The comment section might be a place for you to encourage others with something from Ephesians that has been especially encouraging to you.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Who Really Needs Church?

Here's an interesting article that I hope will encourage your participation in the church. It is an interesting question. My advisor has strongly suggested that my Doctoral work talk about the church, so this caught my eye.
Who Really Needs Church?

Sunday, November 27, 2005

New Life Servant

After my first New Life Servant post, someone said, "You need to say something about Mark Rainey." I thought that was a good idea then. Yesterday, however, it became necessary.

As you can see in the picture we cut down a couple trees at Robinwood. Mark was there to work on the furnace. I was there to cut down the trees. Almost as soon as we began my chainsaw quit.

No fear, Mark just happened to have one in his car! So he took up where I left off. His chain was so dull that it couldn't cut the tree, mine wouldn't run. So I went home to fix mine. He went out and bought a new chain. Well, I couldn't fix mine. So, we cut down two trees with his saw. Mind you, he only signed up to check out the furnace. Chuck Gatewood actually cut the big tree down and Paul Reyes took his turns with his chain saw. But Mark worked all day on the trees.

All of this, in my book, was above and beyond the call of duty, especially for a guy who has chronic back pain. But this morning he was the first to stand up and give testimony of God's faithfulness. He stood up and thanked God for the opportunity to serve! All I could say was wow (as I rubbed my aching muscles)! Thank you, Mark.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Katrina Team Update

Just wanted to let you know that the team arrived in Pass Christian, MS safe and sound. Lee said the flight was a bit bumpy but ok. It is raining buckets down there and not cold at all. The team is great and raring to go! They will attend worship services in the morning and start in to work in the afternoon.

I know they are grateful for all your prayers and support.

Welcome to Our World!

Our family went to the singing Christmas tree Friday. In addition to seeing several people from church, I was struck again with the miracle of the incarnation. God actually became man. Think of it.

The older I get and the more I know of human pain, the more unbelievable the incarnation seems. Why would God enter a world where husbands are unfaithful to their wives, where doctors say, "You have cancer," where parents grieve over their children and children watch their parents slowly pass away? Why would He do that?

It is a lot easier not to be involved. The incarnation says, "God is involved." God chose to involve himself with his creatures. It would have been so much simpler and less messy to sit in heaven and pull some hidden strings to fix the problems. Why did he step into the mess?

That's what love does. It accepts and carries pain. It steps into the mess. Welcome to our world!
<>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <><

Tears are falling, hearts are breaking
How we need to hear from god
You’ve been promised, we’ve been waiting
Welcome holy child
Welcome holy child

Hope that you don’t mind our manger
How I wish we would have known
But long awaited holy stranger
Make yourself at home
Please make yourself at home

Bring your peace into our violence
Bid our hungry souls be filled
World now breaking heaven’s silence
Welcome to our world
Welcome to our world

Fragile finger sent to heal us
Tender brow prepared for thorn
Tiny heart whose blood will save us
Unto us is born
Unto us is born

So wrap our injured flesh around you
Breathe our air and walk our sod
Rob our sin and make us holy
Perfect son of god
Perfect son of god
Welcome to our world.
-- Chris Rice

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Happy Thanksgiving!

Isaiah 12:4 In that day you will say: "Give thanks to the LORD, call on his name; make known among the nations what he has done, and proclaim that his name is exalted.

When you give thanks tomorrow notice the ways thankfulness is expressed in this verse:

  1. By calling on his name: Be in prayer.
  2. By making known what God has done to people who don't follow Him.
  3. By talking about how far above us (exalted) He is.
So don't just say thanks. Take the opportunity to do those three things to display your gratitude!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 21, 2005

New Life Serves Katrina Victims

Mission Chairman Jeff Carlson introduces Katrina TeamYesterday in the service we prayed for our team that is going to Pass Christian, LA to serve next week. They leave Saturday morning and return the following Saturday.

Team members (from left to right) are Larry Richardson, Derrick Elkins, Donna Silva, Shannon Ross, Mark Hannifan, and Merle Ross. Lee Bennett is not pictured.

Please keep them in your prayers. Pray for their safety. Pray that they would be an encouragement to the church there. Pray that they would have opportunity and boldness to share the gospel with people outside the church.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

What the New Testament Church Prayed For

In keeping with the prayer ideas of the past few days I invite you to pray for What the New Testament Church Prayed For.

Friday, November 18, 2005

One of the tougher Q & A's

Q: If God writes sin into His plan, how can we say that He doesn’t cause someone to sin?

A: Good question!

First of all, you are right to start with the crucifixion. It is much more common to start anywhere else and it doesn't work. If you can solve it at the crucifixion, you can solve it anywhere, since that event is the height of evil.

You can't solve it without specific texts. And then you can't go any farther than they take you.
In general, God's plan works out exactly like He wants.

Job 42:2 I know that you can do all things; no plan of yours can be thwarted.

Isaiah 46:10 I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say: My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please.

In specific, His plan regarding Christ worked out just as He planned. God's plans cannot be frustrated, so the evil done at the cross didn't frustrate, but rather accomplished God's purpose.

Acts 2:23 This man was handed over to you by God's set purpose and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross.

Acts 4:27-28 Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed. 28 They did what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen.

Two things are clear. God decreed or ordained the evil and the people were held accountable for it. At this point you have to remind yourself that God can't stand evil.

Habakkuk 1:13 Your eyes are too pure to look on evil; you cannot tolerate wrong.

So we know God doesn't do evil by decreeing evil.

He is, by definition as the one who plans it, the ultimate cause of everything that happens. And, thus, is the ultimate cause of evil. Yet without himself doing or being evil or approving of evil. In other words, He decrees things he hates and disapproves of.

The resolution, though I don't pretend to understand it, has to do with levels of causality. The events of Christ's crucifixion (and I think all evil) had at least three causes, though. God was the ultimate (distant) cause and was not guilty of sin. Satan entered Judas and was the intermediate cause and will suffer eternally for his involvement. And, the people were the proximal cause and they are under God's judgment, too.

We see this clearly in Job 1 & 2. God allowed (ordained, decreed, planned) for Satan to afflict Job. The Sabeans stole the camels (sin, evil). Satan caused them to do that (evil). God permitted it (good). And Job, says "The Lord gives and THE LORD takes away." And the text says he didn't sin by attributing those evil acts to God as the ultimate cause.

That's the best I can do. I think you have to say what the texts say. People are so quick to "protect" God that they are hesitant to make evil part of the decree. I think you have to say what the text says whether you understand how it could work that way or not.

I hope this helps. I'd be happy to talk about it more.

Thursday, November 17, 2005


John Bunyan wrote this definition of prayer from his Bedford prison cell in 1662:

Prayer is a sincere, sensible, affectionate pouring out of the heart or soul to God, through Christ, in the strength and assistance of the Holy Spirit, for such things as God has promised, or according to the word of God, for the good of the church, with submission in faith to the will of God.

This Sunday at New Life Church Riverfalls we'll be talking about that kind of prayer from Ephesians 6:18-20:
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints. Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Read This!

Andree Seu, writer for WORLD Magazine has written an article she calls Andree's aphorisms. If you never follow links from the blog, please follow this one. It is wise, witty and helpful.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

What to pray for?

I found this gem while down in the mine of my Devotions from the pen of Jonathan Edwards book. It glimmered as I hurried past and I found it buried in a parenthesis:

"Undoubtedly that which God abundantly makes the subject of His promises, God's people should abundantly make the subject of their prayers." -- p.65

Monday, November 14, 2005

Christmas Dessert Theater Tickets -- Get Yours Today!

Good Tidings of Great Joy!Get your tickets today!Christmas Dessert Theater tickets went on a "preferred" sale Sunday for those who are bringing friends who don't attend church. This coming Sunday will also be "preferred" ticket sales and the following week, if there are any left, tickets sales will be open for everyone.

The CDT is designed for you to bring a friend to hear a message filled with hope in an atmosphere that is loving and warm. If you have a friend that would benefit from hearing "good tidings of great joy" then get your ticket this Sunday.

The 2005 Christmas Dessert Theater performances will be December 8, 9, 10 at 7:00 p.m. and December 11 at 6:00 p.m..

Tickets will be on sale between services at New Life Church Riverfalls and after the service at New Life Church Robinwood. The cost is $5 per ticket.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Food for the Hungry

In addition to Operation Christmas Child, and our annual Thanksgiving Baskets, we received a challenge today that "one person can make a difference" from Food for the Hungry. Dr. Brad Titus, a New Life Church member, has been involved with FFH for several years; he's sponsored a child whom he later visited on a short-term mission trip. He is now the area representative for FFH.

We have child sponsorship packets at the church or you can sponsor a child online at the link above. You can make a difference, for one person at a time.

They're There

Carol emailed this morning:

We arrived in Keiv around 6am your time Sunday morning-Its ten hour ahead here. All is good. We met rich and Cheri as planned in New York and had a sandwich at the airport before we left for Munich. No food on the plane coming across country just a snack. Since then it seems we ate every two hours. I was able to sleep for a few hours but we are really tired. My feet are so swollen. We are staying at a missionaries home that are back in the states for some time. It's 20 floors up, one of Many like apartment houses. Mcdonalds is straight down out the window in the parking lot. Please let everyone know all is fine. You can e-mail back at this address ( Love to all. Carol

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Lori & Carol are off to Kiev

Taking New Life to UkraineLori and Carol left this morning for Kiev to teach at a Pastor's Wives Conference. Please pray for their safety. Please pray for their families back home. Pray that they would be effective in encouraging those women and helping them make a difference on the other side of the world.

Sunday's Message at New Life Church Riverfalls

Sunday morning we'll be getting dressed for church in our Sunday best. You know, the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, the shoes of the preparation of the gospel, the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation and finally the sword of the Spirit. If for some reason you thought you had to wear a tie, forget about it.

The text, of course, will be Ephesians 6:14-17:

Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
Make sure that these aren't just your Sunday-go-to-meetin' clothes, but your every day battle gear. See you Sunday.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Youth For Christ

Youth for Christ and New Life ChurchThursday Night I joined several other New Life families at the Annual Youth For Christ banquet. We heard the national director as well as the Portland area director talk. A couple boys from Amanda's club were interviewed about how they learned about Christ through YFC. Rescue, an accapella group from Portland sang.

The highlight for me was hearing from a 40 year old man who was led to Christ when he was a freshman in high school by the local area director. He is still walking with the Lord and the influence of reaching that freshman twenty-five years ago has extended to another generation. His children are now walking with the Lord.

Amanda Orendorff, pictured here between me and her husband Aaron, is a Youth For Christ staff member. She works with middle school students at Sunrise Middle School near Clackamas High. The Orendorffs have been part of New Life Church since the outdoor service and picnic this summer. Aaron was deployed to Louisiana as part of the Oregon National Guard.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

New 2 New Life Class

At the Robinwood building on Saturday, November 19th, 10:00a.m. - 12:00 noon we will have our first "New 2 New Life" class since we've started the Robinwood location. This is an opportunity to learn more about our church, our beliefs, our structure, and our vision. It will also be a first step in becoming a member of New Life Church.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

No Cross, No Crown

"No Cross, no crown; no loss, no gain;
They, too, must suffer who would reign.
He best can part with life without a sigh,
Whose daily living is to daily die.
Youth pleads for age, age pleads for rest,
Who pleads for heaven will plead the best."
-- Unknown

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Portland Again!

Portland Again! from my perspectiveThis afternoon the New Life Church pastoral staff went to an all-city prayer and worship meeting called Portland Again! The purpose of the gathering was to pray for revival and to celebrate God's work in our city 100 years ago in the dramatic revival of 1905.

It was a blessing to see thousands of Christians from throughout the metro area call on God's blessing for the Portland area. Maybe you'll read something about it in the paper tomorrow.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Better than a Resurrection!

Suppose you wanted to convince one of your family members of the truth of your faith. If the sky was the limit what would you do? Would you show them a miracle-a-day? Would you have them read More than a Carpenter or How Good is Good Enough? Would you bring them to Billy Graham and let him convince them? Maybe the Bible Answer Man (they are skeptical after all)?

Like I said, the sky is the limit. Why not try something really outside the box? How about if they interviewed someone who'd been to heaven? Or, maybe someone who'd actually gone to hell, maybe that would be more compelling. After all, what could possibly be better than a resurrection?

Actually, Jesus tells us what will be the best convincing tool in all the world. If you pull out all the stops, what will persuade people about the reality of faith?

"He answered, 'Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my father's house, for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.' "Abraham replied, 'They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.' "'No, father Abraham,' he said, 'but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.' "He said to him, 'If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.'" (Luke 16:27-31)
When you get the chance to talk to someone about faith, point them to the source of faith -- the Bible. Don't get an inferiority complex because you don't have a miracle or a book or a famous evangelist. Take people where Jesus took them, to the Bible.

The Voice for November is Here

November VoiceThe November issue of the Voice is online. If you are not online, you're probably not reading this right now and will receive your copy in the mail.

If you do receive one in the mail and don't need to, please contact our office at 503.656.8600 and tell them. It would help us cut costs to not mail the Voice to anyone who reads it online. Thank you.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

A Prayer for Today

O Thou That Hearest Prayer,

Teach me to pray.

I confess that in religious exercises the language of my lips and the feelings of my heart have not always agreed, that I have frequently taken carelessly upon my tongue a name never pronounced above without reverence and humility, that I have often desire things which would have injured me, that I have depreciated some of my chief mercies, that I have erred both on the side of my hopes and also of my fears, that I am unfit to choose for myself, for it is not in me to direct my steps.

Let thy Spirit help my infirmities, for I know now what to pray for as I ought. Let him produce in me wise desires by which I may ask right things, then I shall know thou hearest me.

  • May I never be importunate for temporal blessings, but always refer them to thy fatherly goodness, for thou knowest what I need before I ask;
  • May I never think I prosper unless my soul prospers, or that I am rich unless rich toward thee, or that I am wise unless wise unto salvation.
  • May I seek first thy kingdom and its righteousness.
  • May I value things in relation to eternity.
  • May my spiritual welfare be my chief solicitude.
  • May I be poor, afflicted, despised and have thy blessing, rather than be successful in enterprise, or have more than my heart can wish or be admired by my fellow-men, if thereby these things make me forget thee.
  • May I regard the world as dreams, lies, vanities, vexation of spirit, and desire to depart from it.
  • And may I seek my happiness in thy favor, image, presence, service.

    -- Valley of Vision, p. 106

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Christ at Work

The message on Sunday will be about how knowing Christ changes your experience at work from Monday through Friday. The text will be Ephesians 6:5-9:

Slaves, obey your earthly masters with respect and fear, and with sincerity of heart, just as you would obey Christ. Obey them not only to win their favor when their eye is on you, but like slaves of Christ, doing the will of God from your heart. Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not men, because you know that the Lord will reward everyone for whatever good he does, whether he is slave or free. And masters, treat your slaves in the same way. Do not threaten them, since you know that he who is both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no favoritism with him.
God has great expectations for you at work!

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Leadership Summit Sunday

The game is the same -- playing it has changed.

Come be part of the team Sunday night at our Leadership Summit. We're having dinner at 6:00 at Robinwood in the upper room, and the Team Meeting begins at 6:45 in the auditorium.

We will be conversing with leaders about how the game has changed and the different roles we play and how our team might be even more successful.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Baptisms at New Life Church Riverfalls

I stand before you a committed follower of Christ!Last Sunday was a glorious Sunday at our Riverfalls location. We not only had wonderful music but we had the privilege of hearing, for the first time publically, the testimony of faith of three new believers: Margaret Vargas (pictured here), Michael Haugh, and Heidi Musser. God was honored in a big way as they each described the changes in their lives!

Pastor Jason did his first baptism. He was there when Michael trusted Christ and he baptized him Sunday.

Katrina Team from New Life Church

A team from New Life Church will go to Pass Christian, LA on November 26-December 3, to clean, demolish, rebuild, and encourage Bible Fellowship Church. Donna Silva, Lee Bennett, Derrick Elkins, Mark Hannifan, George Nelson, Larry Richardson, Merle Ross and Shannon Ross make up the team.

Please pray for them. They had a day of training on October 29th. They have to raise a good deal of money quickly. They have to get time off and be ready to work hard physically and encourage people spiritually.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005


Our pet rabbit, Oreo, died yesterday. We had her funeral in the rain under the fir trees in our yard on Halloween.

She hopped into our family about four years ago when she hopped first into our garden. We learned later that one of the neighbors had let her run loose. We let her stay in the garden for a while until a stranger man (turns out it was that neighbor) came uninvited and without permission into our yard and began chasing her. We decided we better do something to protect her.

We borrowed a live-animal trap from the Bruecherts. Oreo calmly stretched out beside the trap and fell asleep. She rested in the rows of beans and under the deck. One day she was sunning herself and I crept up to her and petted her. Soon she was eating out of my hands and I just picked her up. She has been part of the family ever since.

We named her ‘Oreo’ because she was black with a white stripe in the middle. After a couple months we got her a companion who was also a dutch rabbit, with similar black and white markings. She had a little more white so she became ‘Double-Stuff’.

Here are some of the ways me and my family benefited from having Oreo in our lives:

  1. We recognized God’s grace in bringing her into our family. You know I would never go seeking a pet, so one came seeking me. Finding her in our garden is one of my favorite gardening experiences.

  2. We learned daily discipline is essential to survival. She would have died long ago if “feed rabbits” was not on the chore list.

  3. We saw anew that life is not forever. God has not intended even the good things in this world to last forever.

  4. We can sympathize better with people who lose things they love.

  5. We resolve again to love eternal things more and things that pass away less.

  6. We learned to enjoy temporary things while there is still time. If you put off playing together, or going for walks too long, someday it will be too late.

  7. I learned sometimes it is worth it to change your mind. I am generally anti-pet. In this case, changing was a good idea.

  8. I learned that rabbits can be house-broken. (I read it on the internet, but we never tried).

Sometimes God's grace and His lessons hop into our lives in the most unexpected ways.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Operation Christmas Child

It's time to start filling shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child! If you would like to participate in this vital ministry of Samaritan's Purse please fill and label a shoebox and bring it to the church lobby at either church location no later than Wednesday, November 16th. (Don't forget to include $5 for shipping if you can ). If you would like to take part in this ministry but don't want to fill a shoebox you can make a donation to help pay shipping costs.

For more information call Judy Cochran, 656-8659. Brochures and empty shoeboxes are available in the foyer.

New Life Thanksgiving Baskets

Please bring non-perishable food items to church for the next three weeks (Oct. 30-Nov. 13) to stock Thanksgiving Baskets to give away. We will collect food at both locations to give away to people in the church and in the community.

This is another great way to show God's love in a practical way. If you have any questions, please contact Diane Froode or Barbara Gustafson.

Matthew 25:40 And the King will answer them, 'Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.'

Friday, October 28, 2005

Modern church news, from an old church perspective

Here is an interesting blog with a love for old things. The title of his blog is good enough for a link.

Look especially at the comparison between Joel Osteen and Anthony Robbins.

The writer is critical of where he has come from (the seeker-sensitive church movement), as most of us are. So take his remarks with some discernment, but I think they are helpful enough to point you to him once. Modern church news, from an old church perspective

Ten Reasons to Listen to Questions Before You Answer

Here are Ten Reasons to Listen to Questions Before You Answer written by John Piper as a meditation on Proverbs 18:13.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

I voted for it before I voted against it.

Sunday's message at New Life Church Riverfalls will be on Winning Every Christian's Battle, or What's So Real About Halloween? The text will be Ephesians 6:10-12:

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.
I originally thought, what a great message before Halloween. Then I flipped and thought, just do Ephesians in order and take this topic after Halloween. Then I flopped back. So for the next couple weeks Ephesians will be out of order and we'll highlight the keys to winning our spiritual battles this weekend.

About Daylight Saving Time

Don't forget about Daylight Saving Time this Saturday night. I would hate for anyone to miss the extra hour sleep you get from setting your clocks back one hour.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

What do people notice about our church?

What do people notice first in a church? What do they notice first in our church? You may not know that we ask them. We do, and here is a sampling:

"Friendliness & greetings."

"The friendliness of the members."

"People were very warm and friendly."

"People were just NOT friendly."

"The people there were very willing to go out of their way and welcome us in."

"Friendly greeters."

"The positive atmosphere and friendly faces; the worship."

Maybe you notice a theme. Now, granted, when we sent my mom a postcard said she liked the sermon! But most people notice people of the church long before they notice the pastor. In fact, they're often convinced about what the church is like before the announcements even start.

I want to encourage you that you make a difference in how people respond to Jesus when they come to church. Let it be a matter of prayer and then action for you to make a difference every Sunday.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Creation and Jesus

Immediately after my conversion God’s excellency began to appear to me in everything: in the sun, in the moon, in the stars, in the waters, and in all nature. The Son of God created the world for this very end, to communicate to us through it a certain image of His own excellency, so that when we are delighted with flowery meadows and gentle breezes we may see in all that only the sweet benevolence of Jesus Christ.

When we behold the fragrant rose and the snow-white lily we are to see His love and His purity. The green trees and the song of the birds, what are they but the emanation of His infinite joy and benignity? The crystal rivers and the murmuring streams, what are they but the footsteps of His favor and grace and beauty? When we behold the brightness of the sun, the golden edges of the evening cloud, and the beauteous rainbow spanning the whole heaven, be but behold some adumbration of His goodness and His glory.

And, without any doubt, this is the reason that Christ is called the Sun of Righteousness, the Morning Star, the Rose of Sharon, The Lily of the Valley, The Apple Tree among the trees of the wood, a bundle of myrrh, a doe, and a young hart. But we see the most proper image of Jesus Christ when we behold the intellectual and spiritual beauty of the mind and heart of a truly holy man.

-- Jonathan Edwards
Taken from “The Excellency of Christ.”

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Cleo Scheidel Coe

December 30, 1929 - October 18, 2005

TUALATIN - Graveside services will be at 10:30 a.m., Mon., Oct. 24, at Restlawn Memory Gardens. Arrangements are by Restlawn Funeral Home. (Statesman Journal)

Last Tuesday Cleo passed away in her home of an apparent heart attack. She loved the Lord and will be missed. Please pray for her family. Her sister Marjorie Farrell also attends New Life church and has served short-term with Paul & Diana Mayhugh.

Her granddaughter Katie Parkinson has gone to many of our children's events. Katie and her mom Diane would appreciate your prayers. Katie's dad passed away two months ago from a long fight with cancer. They have had a lot of loss in a short time.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

God's Advice to Parents

The Unexasperated Reavely ChildrenParents don't have to blow their tops like a volcano.

Pastor Scott's message tomorrow at New Life Church Riverfalls can help. This text is one of the most helpful pieces of advice a parent could ever receive.

Ephesians 6:4 Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.

(Kids, you may want to bribe your parents to come and take notes).

Friday, October 21, 2005

All-Church Potluck

This Sunday, October 23rd, at 12:30 p.m. at New Life Church Riverfalls the Missions team will host an All-Church Potluck to spend time together and to hear from Paul and Diana Mayhugh. Paul and Diana are missionaries to Macau who were sent out from our church in 1981. Missions is one of the many things we will do together as an entire church.

If your last name begins with A-M please bring a main dish and a salad, N-Z please bring a main dish and dessert. Come celebrate their ministry, learn and enjoy good company. You will be glad you did.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

New Life Servant

Ben serving the Lord at New Life ChurchWhen he’s not directing a choir or leading music at a youth event, Ben Ross is a mild-mannered servant of the Lord who uses his unique talents to make a difference for New Life Church.

I overheard people talking about what a good job Ben did leading the choir last Sunday, coat flapping as his arms signaled a crescendo of praise. He’s been a faithful servant musically with his saxophone and voice in the music department for a couple years now. In the past few weeks he has begun leading worship for the high school and middle school students on Wednesday nights.

His greatest impact, though, may not be where you see him, but where you don’t. Ben designed the church logo. He’s published a style guide and web guide to help us use the logo as it was designed to be used. In addition, he has designed the logo and web page for the Remnant, New Life Church’s high school ministry. The Coffee Cart banner is his creation, too. The visual impact of all those is remarkable.

Even as I am writing this, he is redesigning New Life Church’s website from top to bottom. Ben, thanks for doing what only you can do to serve the Lord and his church.


I recently had occasion to dig through the history archives of the church formerly known as West Linn Baptist Church.

Guess which of the following is not in one of those boxes:

  1. Mark and Molly Hanson's wedding program.
  2. A picture of a mortgage burning.
  3. Cindy Sollers' high school graduation picture.
  4. Pictures of the donkey given away during the nation-wide Sunday School competition.
  5. Hannah Cochran as a baby.
  6. Paul Mayhugh's commissioning service bulletin.
  7. A picture of Pastor Scott doing disco in front of a peer pressure poster.
  8. Every bulletin ever produced in the first 50 years of the church.
  9. An announcement for "Spiritual Crusade" at our church featuring John Piper's father.

You are right. #7 is no longer in one of those boxes!

Actually, here is the point. It would be great if someone would volunteer to scan many of the church pictures to create a digital archive of the history of the church. If someone would be willing to work on this project we could loan a you a scanner. Thank you. Please let me know if you would like to do this.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

West Linn High Bible Club

West Linn High School Bible ClubNew Life Students lead Bible Club at WLHS

The Bible Club at West Linn High School started off their year yesterday with a kick off lunch. They served a five foot long Subway sandwich, chips and soda. Approximately 25 kids participated. The Bible Club, which is now an official club at West Linn High School, was started almost two and a half years ago by a group of students from New Life Church. The club meets during lunch every Tuesday in the classroom of the English Department Co-Chair, Mr. Freyer. Although students from many churches attend, the club continues to be lead by students from New Life Church. The goal of the Bible Club is to reach students with the Gospel and to encourage Christian students in their faith.

Heaven (Pt. 2)

Psalm 73:25 There is none on earth I desire beside you.
It is the spirit of a godly man to prefer God before all other things on the earth. There is the enjoyment of God, for which he hopes hereafter, which is better than anything in this world. They not only prefer those glorious degrees of the enjoyment of God which are promised hereafter before anything in this world, but even such degrees as may be attained to her in this present state, though they are immensely short of what is to be enjoyed in heaven. There is a great difference in the spiritual attainments of the saints in the world. Some attain to much greater acquaintance and communion with God, and conformity to Him, than others. But the highest attainments are very small in comparison with what is future.
The saint prefers what he has already of God before anything in this world. That which is infused into his heart at his conversion is more precious to him than anything which the world can afford. The knowledge and acquaintance which he has with God, though it is but little, he would not part with for anything that the world can afford. The views which are sometimes given him of the beauty and excellency of God are more precious to him than all the treasures of the wicked. The image of God stamped on his soul he values more than any earthly ornaments.
-- Quoted in Devotions from the pen of Jonathan Edwards, p. 37.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

The Remnant Needs You!

The Remnant is looking for someone to join their staff who has a desire to help high schoolers have fun! As part of our mission on Wednesday nights to provide quality worship, fellowship, and teaching, we set aside a part of the evening to games and/or mixers. If you're looking for a place to plug in, we would love to have you join us as our "official Game Coordinator". Please let Jason know either through email ( and phone (503-656-8600). The sooner we can fill this position, the sooner we can begin to reach local students more effectively with the Gospel!

Ministry in Malaysia

Aaron & Nate head for Malaysia Aaron Anderson & Nathan Hanson are going to serve the Lord in Malaysia. They will be working in a youth camp, leading worship, speaking and working with young people.

Below are the introductions they wrote to explain themselves to the missionaries who will be putting them to work:

My name is Aaron Anderson, I’m from Portland, OR., and I have been very interested in missions my whole life. Even at a very young age I thought I might want to be a missionary because of my taste for exotic food, love of different cultures, and heart for the lost. As I grew older I began to love leading worship and teaching as well. God has blessed me with the opportunity to use my gifts on missions trips twice before this: once on a trip to lead an English camp for junior high school students in the Czech Republic and once to reach out to the homesick American military in Japan with Cadence International.
This last year I grew quite significantly in my teaching ability by teaching the high school Sunday school class at my church. Every week was a 20-30 minute lesson with 20-30 minutes of worship before for about 30 students a week. God has also blessed me with relational skills used in mentoring new Christians and for building relationships that allow me to speak into others lives and to have friends that I am accountable to as well. I want to honor God with everything I do and want to be a part of His work in the middle of the 10x40 window. I am so blessed to be able to see God in this part of the world and hope and pray that he would use me to my fullest extent here and that this ministry would have an eternal effect for the people at the camp and for the Kingdom of God.

My name is Nate Hanson and I live in Portland, OR. I am 18 years old and I’ve been extremely interested in missions for many years. My desire has grown and I am now considering the possibility of being a full-time missionary one day. For the past three years I have led worship weekly for thirty minutes for up to 50 students. This job included planning and practicing as well as often speaking throughout the worship sessions. I have also been able to lead for our main Sunday services multiple times. To further enhance my skills in leading and speaking I joined a local speech club as well as a national speech league. Through many rounds of competition I was awarded the opportunity to take my two speeches to the annual national tournament. At that tournament I was bless with third place in the nation with one of my speeches.
I have been on a mission trip before—it was about three years ago when I ventured to Lomas, Mexico. During this trip we built relationships with the students there by playing soccer and basketball with them. While building relationships we were also able to share our testimonies and saw two young people accept Christ. At the weekly services there I was able to lead worship multiple times. I feel confident in my worship-leading skills and believe that I can lead most groups on any kind of notice. I’m extremely excited to have the opportunity to travel all the way across the globe to use skills that I have been practicing for so many years. This opportunity is a blessing from the Lord and I can’t wait to see how he will work in the lives of those I’m going to touch and in my own life.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Katrina Team Meeting

The time to act is here. We will have a meeting Wednesday, October 19 at 7:00 at New Life Church Robinwood for all those even interested in serving Katrina victims. We will answer questions and come away with a plan of action that includes firm dates, facts about the church we'll partner with and a time of team training (October 29 at Sandy Baptist). Brian Stark the Northwest Representative for Delta Ministries will be there to answer questions. This is a great opportunity. Please come if you are interested.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Children Obey Your Parents

Tomorrow's text is Ephesians 6:1-3, Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. "Honor your father and mother"-- which is the first commandment with a promise-- "that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth."

It is one of the first verses Christian children learn, the Reavely children at least.

Plan to Hear David Bryant

I heard David Bryant speak Friday night at a small gathering for pastors. His message is hope-filled and encouraged us all to make Christ supreme in our lives. He used his new book,
Christ Is All -- A Joyful Manifesto!

Sunday, October 16, from 6:00-8:00, he will be speaking at Beaverton Christian Church. Do your heart a favor and make plans to hear him.

I recommend dropping everything Sunday night and attending. You will be stirred with passion for Jesus. Take a short road trip with your small group -- you can have a normal small group meeting any day.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Check Out God's Work in the Remnant (aka High School Group)!

This is a response to the topic Jason talked about on Wednesday night, Providence Anyone?. It was posted on the ultra-cool youth blog, The Buzz.

MikeE has been a great encouragement to the high schoolers and those that know him, but I thought you all would be encouraged to know, in his own words, what God has done in his life.


No horse ever gets anywhere until he is harnessed. No steam or gas ever drives anything until it is confined. No Niagara is ever turned into light and power until it is tunneled. No life ever grows great until it is focused, dedicated, disciplined.
— Harry Emerson Fosdick

I've never known a man worth his salt who in the long run, deep down in his heart, didn't appreciate the grind, the discipline. … I firmly believe that any man's finest hour—this greatest fulfillment to all he holds dear—is that moment when he has worked his heart out in a good cause and lies exhausted on the field of battle victorious.
— Vince Lombardi

Life is tons of discipline.
— Robert Frost

(Quoted in John Maxwell's Leadership Wired Newsletter)

Thursday, October 13, 2005


Our first few weeks have been pretty exciting at New Life Robinwood. The thing that has brought us the most joy is that we have already seen two people follow Christ in baptism (see pictures of Steve Ticen and Jeff Jones below).
Make disciples baptizing them . . Repent and be baptized, every one of you. . .
Please pray that the Lord will use us to see many more people put their trust in Christ, be baptized, and follow whole-heartedly after Christ!

Ukraine Pastor's Wives Conference

New Life Church serving in Ukraine One month from yesterday, Lori Elliot and Carol Carlson are leaving for Kiev, Ukraine. They will be speaking at a pastor's wives conference in partnership with our missionaries Rich & Cheri Strahm of Equippers Network International.

Please pray for them. Lori will be the 'keynote' speaker, talking to them about family life. And, Carol will be teaching them how to create women's ministry events that are feminine and special. Please pray for safety on the trip. Pray that they will make their connections for their flights.

There will be a women's missions night October 18 at 7:00 at NLC Riverfalls so that all the women of New Life Church can share in this ministry to Ukrainian women.

Treasure God Above Everything Else!

Treasure GodTreasure God
Yesterday was our second Treasure Island, where our mission is "To Treasure God Above Everything Else". Our project was to choose team names and created team flags. The K-2nd grade team chose Treasure Hunters.

The 3rd-5th graders chose Treasure Pros (meaning Treasure Protectors).
Our memory verse this week is: Your Word is a lamp for my feet and a light for my path. Psalms 119:105
Thanks for praying for us, we had 3 new kids attend this week. Our next Island Gathering is Wednesday, October 19th at 3:30 PM. Invite a friend to experience Treasure Island.