Just Passing Through

One of the things I love about the calendar year is that it definitely has a rhythm to it. Especially if you have kids in school. But even if not, summer definitely has a different dynamic about it. It's a little less structured, a little more free. 

At Restoration, one of my goals is that we get these natural rhythms and work with them...because our faith grows within the natural rhythms of life, not in spite of them. So summer for us is a chance to do something a little differently, even on Sunday mornings. 

We tend to organize our teaching around topics that are relevant and important, and then mine the Scriptures to see what God has to say about those topics. In the past year, we've discussed God's perspective on growing more emotionally healthy (the "What's Your Emoji?" Series), how to be a blessing and leave a mark on our world (the "Rhythms" Series), and how Jesus and what Jesus invites us into is greater than what we often settle for (the "Greater Than" series), among others. But during the Summer, we want to organize ourselves the other way around: starting with a specific section of Scripture, and just see what God is saying about whatever topic comes up. 

Now, I can already hear the chorus of people, either complaining or championing one approach over the other. Christians tend to have more opinions about these two approaches to what gets taught on Sunday than they do the color of the carpet in the church hallway...#churchconflict. But our goal is to always seek God as He is revealed in the Scriptures and submit our lives to His wisdom, regardless of whether the origin of that is exegetically or topically. That's the point, and we want to approach it from both directions. 

So for this summer, we're going to dive into one of my favorite books in the New Testament: 1 Peter. 

We're calling this series #justpassingthrough because much of Peter's focus for his letter is helping us understand Jesus and how to trust and follow Him in a world that doesn't. One of his main points is that we're really living here as foreigners, just passing through because we belong to a wholly different world. That perspective will shape and inform every facet of our lives, if we'll let it. And when we do, like Peter says, we may just end up "...pulled into a way of life shaped by God's life, a life energetic and blazing with holiness." 

So starting June 11, we're also inviting you into a new rhythm with us. We want you to grow deep and KNOW this section of the Bible with us. Each week, in addition to the sermon, we'll also be putting out a reading guide and some reflection questions. These will be posted on our Facebook page, twitter (@restchurchsalem), and our website (restorationsalem.org). We know people are often all over the place during the summer...our hope is that we will stay connected, growing together as we interact with what God is saying to us. 

So take a listen to the sermon (you can subscribe to the podcast here). Read the passage over a few times each week. Reflect on the questions. If you want to find a deeper connection with God...this is your invitation. I hope you'll join us!

Josh