Happy New Year

As we enter a new season I’d like to remind you of a couple of important upcoming dates.

MoreBetter-FPSS

The More & Better Discipleship Workshop is Saturday, February 20, 2016 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

This workshop provides a practical plan for every leader who wants to help the people they serve to take the next step of spiritual growth. Discipleship will be demystified, offering a clear design for helping someone grow as a disciple. If you serve at Lighthouse – whether you’re an experienced leader or someone who has never discipled another believer – More and Better is for you. This two-and-a-half hour workshop is a practical resource, spurring one another on, to a life of love and service to God.

BONUS – the first 75 people who register and attend the workshop will receive a free copy of Multiply by Francis Chan and Mark Beuving. This book is one of the resources we will recommend at the workshop and is specially designed to use in discipleship relationships. Childcare is available for children through Kindergarten age with pre-registration. Register online here.

 

Groups Leaders Retreat is Saturday, April 9, 2016 from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Details coming soon, save the date!

 

I wish you all a safe and Happy New Year celebration!

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Spreading Joy & Christmas Cheer

Written by Keri & Gus Tarantino

Recently, a small group from The Haven participated in an afternoon visit with residents at the local Rainier Rehabilitation medical center. There were five families in our group, including 10 children ranging in age from 20 months to 5 years that joined in the festivities. We shared a time of Christmas caroling and connecting over holiday crafts.

Our time began with walking through the hallways to sing for residents throughout the facility. Some were unable to leave their room while others were able to join us in the hallway in song. As we were singing, many residents asked to be wheeled out, or waved to our children from their hospital beds. After walking through the halls, we joined the staff in doing a craft project with several residents in the dining hall. We enjoyed painting alongside folks there and had the opportunity to hear about many of their journeys.

Our time at Rainier Rehabilitation certainly seemed to provide holiday cheer and offered a time to visit with many folks who often have few people who come to be with them. However, it extended well beyond the physicality of being together. Some group members were able to join in prayer with residents, broadening our holiday visit to a spiritual one as well. Residents seemed eager to talk, to hear about Lighthouse and were grateful for the time to connect.

In reflecting back on the day, several of The Haven’s group members shared the sentiment of being struck by the simplicity of the time, and yet the profound way in which we were all impacted by the experience we had sharing in the holiday spirit.

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A Personal Retreat Testimony

Written by Dean McClary

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I choose to use part of a recent weekend, and access to an Ocean Shores cabin that belongs to a friend, to take a personal retreat. I wanted to apply some of the different practices and postures to touch the hem of the Lord, that I had learned in the recent “How to Relate to God & Others” Spiritual Essentials class with Pastor Tony. I also planned to use the time to address some issues rooted in my past that I have been increasingly aware of that affect my ability to function fully and freely in Christ.

I first felt compelled to have a “season of silence,” which I interpreted as being totally unplugged from all electronics as well as interactions with other people. Related to that, was a conscious attempt to not track time, but to feel free to be led as He directed each moment. Finally, with my strong “Naturalist” tendencies in how I meet God (Sacred Pathways by Gary Thomas), I spent a LOT of time walking or running the beaches over parts of three days.

While I did not hear the proverbial voice coming from a setting sun over the pink-colored waves of dusk at Ocean Shores, I know that the Lord met me in the time I had freed up for us in several ways. A personal Sunday morning “church time” with Christ, involving Bible study and scripture memory card review, suddenly went real deep, from my head to my heart. I found myself lingering over verses from Psalm 73: 23-26 in which David claims, “…I am always with you, you hold me by my right hand.” Suddenly the thought of the Lord rejoicing over me with singing (Zephaniah 3:17) became as spiritually real to me as I have ever experienced in a 30+ year journey with Christ. I found myself claiming those verses from the Psalms in a spirit of praise over the rest of the retreat. He also guided three different “free writes” to unlock some past memories in unexpected ways that went way beyond what I feel I could’ve learned about myself resulting from past events.

What I learned from the experience, besides the obvious fact it was way worth it, is it’s important to seek and have the prayer coverage of family and friends, bring what you have before Him with loose reins, and learn to linger with Him as the Holy Spirit directs.