Friday, October 31, 2008

Prayer is Answering Speech

As the 40 Days of ExtraOrdinary Prayer concludes this coming week, here's a brief meditation on prayer from a book I've just begun reading.

Eugene Peterson, Working the Angles

We want life on our conditions, not on God’s conditions. Praying puts us at risk of getting involved in God’s conditions. Be slow to pray. Praying most often doesn’t get us what we want but what God wants, something quite at variance with what we conceive to be in our best interests. And when we realize what is going on, it is often too late to go back. Be slow to pray (44).

. . . prayer is never the first word; it is always the second word. God has the primary word. Prayer is answering speech; it is not primarily “address” but “response.” . . . Prayer is answering speech. The first word is God’s word. Prayer is a human word and is never the first word, never the primary word, never the initiating and shaping word simply because we are never first, never primary (45-47).

Time Change Sunday- Nov. 2nd

Hello New Life Church,

Don't forget to set your clocks back one hour before you go to bed on Saturday night. It wouldn't be the end of the world to show up to church an hour early, but hey, why miss out on that extra hour of sleep... or private prayer. : )

See ya Sunday,

Pastor Nathan

Monday, October 27, 2008

Week 5 - “Missions & Evangelism”

Individual & Small Group Instructions

This week we’ll be focusing on Parts 4 & 5 of the Prayer Resource Book, “Missions” & “Evangelism” (pg. 35-39). Begin each prayer by approaching God through one of the five prayers in Part 1, “Opening.” In addition to your regular requests, pray each day for the assigned missionary/missionaries as outlined below. For a more detailed list of prayer requests from each missionary check out the New Life Blog. Close your prayer by reading through both the Missions (pg. 36) and Evangelism (pg. 39) sample prayers. You may also like to pray for lost individuals you know by using the prayer from Part 9, “The Unconverted” (pg. 46).
New Life Missionaries
Day 1 (26th) — Paul and Diana Mayhugh (South Asia), Brian and Lavonne Buhler (South Asia)
Day 2 (27th) — Dave and Sherrie Henderson (Portland and Central Asia)
Day 3 (28th) — Skip and Ruth Sorenson (Uganda), Audrey Sorenson (Rwanda)Day 4 (29th) — Rich and Cheri Staham (Ukraine)
Day 5 (30th) — Dan and Alice Simmons (Italy), Bruce Tissell (Brazil)
Day 6 (31st) — Carmen Bryant (Portland State University), Paul and Beryle Metko (Scappoose, OR)
Day 7 (1st) — Rick and Mary Beth Holladay (Germany)
Small Group Participation
As a group, adopt a missionary from the list above to pray for every week for the rest of 2008. For more information on how to pray week to week for the missionary you choose, contact Pastor Nathan, 503.699.1779. You can also get regular updates from the field via e-mail or personally reach out to a missionary and their family through letters, gifts and support.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Thank You, Julia!

Thursday, October 23, is the last work day for Julia McBride in the church office. She has been a gift from the Lord. Julia’s smile, energy and enthusiasm will be greatly missed.

She is leaving work for a better job! She's expecting a baby boy in the middle of November and will be home with him and Lilly. You can always catch up with her and Tod and the kids at church.

If you are in the area of the church Thursday morning, please drop by to share a scone and a box of juice with Julia and wish her well.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Week 4 - “The Church (Part 2)”

Using the Prayer Resource Book
This week we’re again focusing on Part 3 of the Prayer Resource Book, “The Church” (pg. 18-34). Last week we went for breadth—praying for all the areas of our church’s need. This week we’ll be aiming at depth. Pick three categories from the Prayer Resource Book to focus on in your prayer time. Each day, work through the following steps:

  1. Read all the Scriptural texts that to correspond the area you’ve chosen.
  2. Pick 1-2 verses and look them up in at least two other translations.
  3. Ask yourself:
    What is the theme (or the “big idea”) of this verse?
    How does this verse apply to my prayer life (i.e., how should it change how I pray or what I pray for)?
    How does this verse apply to how I relate to the church personally (i.e., is it asking me to forgive, to serve, to confess, to give, etc.)?
  4. Choose one verse from among the verses you’ve studied and write out how you can pray that verse in a simple and concise way.
  5. Pray that prayer at least 5 times throughout the day. For example: morning, lunch, afternoon break, before dinner and right before bed. To help remember, set an alarm or write yourself a note.
New Resources Available
There are a number of new resources available in the Riverfalls campus foyer to help you, your family and especially your children during these 40 Days.

Small Group Participation
Bring the prayers you’ve written so far this week to group and share how praying throughout the day has been different from praying all at once. Has it been easier or harder? Has breaking throughout the day to pray helped you focus on God? Which way suits you better

Women's Missionary Fellowship

Hello Women of New Life!

Tonight (Monday) at 7:00 PM you have the opportunity to meet and hear from an extraordinary woman of faith who has been used of God in many ways throughout the world. Carmen Bryant currently serves as a missionary in the Portland area working with international students, and in the past she and her husband Don served overseas in Indonesia and the Philippines. Come hear about her exciting journey of faith in the past and get updated on the work she is doing now.

You will also have an opportunity to serve the mission field in a practical way. Carol Carlson has coordinated with Brad Titus to help do some hands-on projects to help the Guatemala Short Term Mission team that is going out from New Life Church in February.

Don't miss it!

Pastor Nathan for the New Life Church Global Outreach Team

Friday, October 17, 2008

24 Hours of ExtraOrdinary Prayer

Tomorrow at 9:00 am the 24 Hours of ExtraOrdinary Prayer begins. As a reminder, the event has been moved off-site, which means that the time you signed up for still stands but instead of coming to the church, pray at home or with your small group.

Follow this link for a .pdf of the instructions for both individuals and small groups.

If you have any questions, e-mail me at

Ephesians 3:16-21

I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge--that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Baby Shower This Saturday for Julia McBride

Our Church Secretary, Julia McBride will be having a baby boy in mid-November! Ladies, please come celebrate with us this Saturday, October 18th, 2:00 pm at our Riverfalls building. This will be such a fun time to fellowship together and prepare to welcome Baby Boy McBride! If you have any questions please call Lori Elliott at 503-650-5070.

Global Outreach Sunday- October 26th

Global Outreach Sunday is coming soon! Skip and Ruth Sorenson, Paul and Diana Mayhugh, and Dave Henderson (not pictured for security purposes) will be joining us at New Life Church for a day focused on Global Outreach. The schedule is as follows:

9:00 AM Mayhugh Testimony at Riverfalls
9:30 AM Sorenson Testimony at Robinwood
10:45 AM Dave Henderson Testimony at Riverfalls

12:30 PM Meet a Missionary Lunches *

6:00 PM Global Outreach Service at Robinwood **

* You can still sign up for a meet a missionary lunch. Simply post a comment on this blog or call Pastor Nathan.

** The Global Outreach Service will include time for each of the missionaries to share, Q and A, prayer, and musical worship.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Current Events Discussion Group - October

“How do you pick a presidential candidate?”
October 23rd @ 7:00pm, Riverfalls Campus

Mission Statement:
The Current Events Discussion Group (CEDG) exists to explore and evaluate contemporary social, political and cultural issues so that each member may discern and apply their personal faith convictions within their daily lives.

The opinions and views expressed at the CEDG reflect those of the of the person who gave them and not New Life Church.

The CEDG will be meeting the fourth Thursday of every month.
Discussion Questions:
  1. What social and political issues are relevant to choosing a candidate?
  2. Does one issue carry more weight than others? Why?
  3. What can we learn from Jesus and Paul’s interactions with political power?
  4. How should a candidate’s moral and religious commitments effect your vote?
Contact Information:
For more information on CEDG procedures and for a required Information Packet addressing this month’s topic contact Tiffani Howard: 503.223.6357 or
Required Preparation
  1. Scripture Reading: Romans 13:1-7, 1 Timothy 2:1-4 & Deuteronomy 17:14-20
  2. Read the following articles:
    How to Pick a President by Daniel Taylor & Mark McCloskey
    In the Booth, Not of the Booth by Adam Smith
  3. Pick and answer one of the Discussion Questions from the list above. Be prepared to give a 4-5 minute defense/presentation of your answer (i.e., less than one page written).
  4. Consult at least two additional media sources dealing with the question you've chosen. These sources must reflect two varying/opposing answers to the question and they must be from reputable, evangelical sources.
  5. If you do not complete the required preparation before the CEDG meeting then you may only participate in the discussion/questioning portion of the meeting.
Upcoming Monthly Topics:
Church and State • Creation Meets Evolution • Is American a “Christian Nation”? • Evangelical Environmentalism • Christianity and the Israeli State • Old Testament Wars vs. Modern Wars

Monday, October 13, 2008

Week 3 - “The Church” (Part 1)

Using the Prayer Resource Book:
This week and next we will be focusing on Part 3 of the Prayer Resource Book, “The Church” (pg. 18-34). Despite it’s emphasis in the NT (as the prayers this week display), the church often receives no more than a passing, “God, please bless . . .” in our regular prayer lives. Each day we will concentrate on a different area of prayer for the church using the following schedule:

Day 1 (12th) — “The Spiritual Life of the Body” (pg. 18-21)
Day 2 (13th) — “The Pastor(s)” & “The Elders” (pg. 22-25)
Day 3 (14th) — “The Ministry of the Word” (pg. 26-28)
Day 4 (15th) — “Worship” (pg. 29-30)
Day 5 (16th) — “Financial Need and Stewardship” (pg. 31-32)
Day 6 (17th) — “Small Group Community” (pg. 33-34)
Day 7 (18th) — “Worship” & “The Ministry of the Word”

Prayer Appointment Cards
If you haven’t yet engaged in the 40 Days or it you’re having trouble sustaining your goals, then the Prayer Appointment Card is for you. The cards were included in last week's worship folder, but you can also pick them up at either location. Simply record the “Where, When and What” of your prayer life on the card and treat it just like you would a regular appointment: block off the time in your calendar, put the card somewhere memorable and show-up.

24-Hours of ExtraOrdinary Corporate Prayer
From 9:00am Saturday the 18th to 9:00am Sunday the 19th we will be joining together (4-5 people per hour) for a full 24 hours of prayer. Stop by the table in the foyer or contact Aaron Orendorff, 503.957.4335/

Small Group Participation
Using the Collected Scriptures from the “Small Group Community” pages (33-34), write out two or three prayers that you can use for both your personal group and for the small group ministry across New Life.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Remodel is Underway!

The remodel at New Life Riverfalls that we have been talking about for a couple months is officially underway. The church voted overwhelmingly in favor of changing the library and upper fireside rooms into a coffee bar and living room for the church. We also approved an exterior project to update the entrance. Once the interior project, which is the project we began talking about, is underway and fully funded the exterior project can begin once the money for it comes in.

This remodel will have a big impact on our Coffee Cart ministry and will be used every school day as well as Sundays. It will also make the first impression of the church much more attractive.

The work will commence around October 20 and we hope to have it ready of Christmas. Please continue to pray for the project. You may donate by simply marking your giving envelope, "Building Fund." Thank you.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Week 2 - “What Is Prayer”

Using the Prayer Resource Book:
This week begin each prayer by reading one or more of “The Prayers of Paul” from Part 2 of the Prayer Resource Book (pg. 12-13). The aim of this exercise is to “learn what to pray for, what arguments to use, what priorities we should adopt, what beliefs should shape our prayers and much more.” Read through each prayer 5 or 6 times. Read slowly, concentrating on each word and phrase and paying attention to how they connect and build. Try comparing different versions of each prayer by reading from various translations.

After you’re familiar with the prayer, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. What is Paul praying for (spiritual vitality, practical needs, deliverance, etc.)?
  2. What is the pattern of this prayer (thanksgiving, petition, exhortation, etc.)?
  3. What is Paul’s chief concern? What does he pray for most?
  4. How is Paul structuring or building this prayer (i.e., look for words like “so,” “therefore” or “in order to”)?
  5. How is Paul’s faith (that is, his theology) shaping his prayer? What do his prayers tell us about God?
Use one or more of Paul’s prayers as your own. Change the wording to reflect your needs and situation, but try to let Paul’s prayer shape your prayer. On the reverse side of this page is a sample of what this might look like.

Small Group Participation:
Bring a modified version of one Paul’s prayers to your small group and explain how you answered the reflection questions for at least one text. Also, if you haven’t shared your assessment and goals yet, do it this week.