Seeing Advent Every Day

Advent might be over, but there is much we can learn from the season and continue to reflect on throughout the year. An Advent sermon by Dominican Priest Oscar Uzin from Bolivia ended with this challenge: “The Lord is Coming, always coming. Be alert to his coming. When you have ears to hear and eyes

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Questioning, doubting & hoping

Do you ever doubt? I imagine (and hope) so! It is impossible for most of us to live in the 21st century without having times when we are filled with questions and doubts concerning God, and/or what God has done in Jesus.  We look at the condition of the church now and through the ages,

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Grace for others—What does it look like?

Grace is the third word in our BEG series, that challenges us to BUILD others up, ENCOURAGE others, and offer one another GRACE. With the exception of some Eastern Orthodox theologians and a few Pentecostal/Charismatic teachers, most Christian groups have failed to emphasize a fairly prevalent teaching in the New Testament: We are invited to

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We are blessed so we can be a blessing

The second word in our BEG series that challenges us to BUILD others up, ENCOURAGE others, and GRACE others is Encourage. It is interesting to me how many of our prized cultural stories and our movies are about the importance of encouragement.  Recent movie hits such as Antoine Fisher, I Walk the Line, Gifted Hands,

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What Ephesians says about Building Others Up

– By Ron Simkins We’ve been talking, thinking and praying about the Lord making us a “community of beggars” – people who daily accept as our assignment from God the call to: B =  Build others up E = Encourage others G = Grace others’ lives as a gift As we continue to work on

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A different way to respond to one another

– By Ron Simkins Recently, our teachings at New Covenant Fellowship have been focused around what it means to BEG—Build other up, Encourage others, and Grace others—and how counter-cultural it is to be oriented toward others in those ways. Since I began this series of teachings, I’ve become increasingly aware of the fact that my

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Encouragment: Much more than ‘being nice’

– By Ron Simkins I have been claiming for several weeks now that being a community that wants to be encouraging is one of the most counter-cultural, Jesus-like things we can emphasize in our polarized world and culture. It seems to me, though, there’s a danger that we will hear the challenge to ‘be encouraging”

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What does encouragement look like?

– By Jim Linder As a pastor and teacher I want to be a good communicator.  I know I sat through many class lectures in college as well as many sermons that were boring and easily forgotten.  Yet some examples, stories or illustrations have remained with me for decades. It is of particular interest to

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An Alternative Culture: Learning to BEG (Part II)

– By Ron Simkins In last week’s blog post, I was encouraging us to become a “community of beggars” and to be humble enough to “beg” as individuals—Build others up, Encourage others, and Grace others.  It seems clear to me that learning to do this is one of the most important ways we can be

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An Alternative Culture: Learning to BEG (part I)

– By Ron Simkins What is “Jesus’ Way of Living?” It seems clear in some respects, if we look at the counter-cultural way Jesus lived and what he taught. However, what his followers should emphasize in their own lives varies greatly from context to context. It might help to think of how today’s society acts

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