The Mind of Christ

There are a lot of troubling things going on in the news today:  a boat of women and children capsizes while fleeing from Myanmar, tensions between the United States and North Korea are escalating, Mexico City is in ruins after an earthquake, a Guatemalan mudslide kills several people, the commonwealth of Puerto Rico is without Read the full article →

Magnitude and Direction

Recently, among my usual grab bag of sermon illustrations, I mentioned Despicable Me, a movie adored by my boys (OK, fine, and me). The film’s villain is named Vector, because—as he explains with enthusiasm—he commits crimes with both direction and magnitude. Jesus asked his disciples a crucial question: who do you say that I am? Read the full article →

How We Remember

I’m sure there are a few important dates that remain on your calendar year after year. There are happy days like birthdays, wedding anniversaries, and reminders of major life changes. And there may be a few sad days as well, like the anniversary of the death of a loved one that likely is not marked Read the full article →

Sermon Bonus – Encountering Jesus:  Living Water in the Wilderness

    This week, we looked at Jesus’ encounter with the Samaritan woman at the well in John 4. It’s interesting that this woman has acquired a reputation for immorality and promiscuity. It’s even more interesting how easy that narrative is to believe once you decide that’s her story. She’s been married five times, she’s Read the full article →

Sermon Bonus 3.5.17 – Encountering Jesus: Into the Wilderness

In Matthew 4, Jesus faces three temptations to rely on his own strength to elude suffering and to seize power for his own. It’s a temptation that we face every day. We make choices every day to ensure that we won’t have to feel weak or inferior; we’ve figured out ways to keep ourselves satisfied Read the full article →

We Welcome Refugees

Restoration is deeply committed to welcoming refugees. We say this because we believe that God has always called his people to welcome refugees. All of scripture puts the radical hospitality of God on display, from his command to the Israelites that “the foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself” Read the full article →

Advent is for Love

During each week of Advent, Restoration Church has been focusing on a specific theme. In the sermons preached and the Tom Wright devotional, Advent for Everyone, we have both heard and read about waiting, repentance and healing. This week we are looking at the theme concerning love. Love is a word that is loosely thrown around Read the full article →

Repent:  The Big Turn

During Advent, we are reading Tom Wright’s devotional, Advent For Everyone.  This week the readings emphasize not only the nature of repentance, but its significance in this time especially. If you’ve heard a sermon or two on repentance, then you’ve likely heard that the word means “to turn around.”  This of course easily applies to Read the full article →

Watch: It is always Advent

This week our sermon text and readings from the Advent for Everyone devotional have all been Jesus’ teachings about his second coming. These scripture passages may seem far from the familiar nativity narrative about angels and shepherds but they are a call for the Church to watch for the return of Jesus. This article about Read the full article →

Sermon Bonus 11.20.16 – “An Important Failure”

  In the sermon Sunday, I mentioned the poem by W.H. Auden called “Musee des Beaux Arts.”  In the poem, Auden talks about Pieter Bruegel’s painting, The Fall of Icarus.  In the painting, everyone is turning away from Icarus as he plunges into the sea.  To them, it simply wasn’t an “important failure.” When we Read the full article →

Restoration Recommends: Assimilate or Go Home

Assimilate or God Home: Notes from a Failed Missionary on Rediscovering Faith by D.L. Mayfield. I have spent much of my life loving the idea of doing good, for the sake of the kingdom of God, of course, but also as a part of a deeply ingrained plan for self-improvement. I’ve admired adventurous missionaries, self-sacrificing urban Read the full article →

Thursday Share: What Does the Ascension of Jesus Mean?

Today is Ascension Day! On this day in the Easter season we celebrate the occasion when Jesus was with his disciples, offering final instructions about what to expect when he went to be with the Father, and then was taken up in to the clouds and was gone. Celebrating the absence of Jesus seems odd but Read the full article →

Praying the Daily Office – Nobie

Note:  During Lent, we will feature guest blog posts from members of Restoration who are exploring the Daily Office in the Book of Common Prayer. Hopefully, these reflections will be an encouragement to you in your own prayer life during this season. Thanks to Nobie Hendricks for this contribution. Much of our Christian life is one of inwardness Read the full article →

Baptized with Christ

The season of Epiphany is often commemorated by observing the first three occasions on which Jesus’ divinity was revealed: 1) when the wise men found infant Jesus in Bethlehem, 2) when John the Baptist baptized Jesus in the Jordan, and 3) when Jesus’ performed the miracle at the marriage at Cana. Last week we read Read the full article →

Christmas is 12 Days

We are happy to say that it is still Christmas at Restoration! Merry Christmas! On the Church Calendar Christmas lasts from December 25 through January 5—or the twelve days of Christmas. But this isn’t just a quaint bit of history that we remember as we pack away the tree and ornaments. It is an invitation Read the full article →

Lessons & Carols

One of the traditions at Restoration is celebrating Lessons and Carols on the first Sunday after Christmas. This past Sunday, December 27th was that day and it was a wonderful service. Lessons and Carols is the story of God’s plan for the salvation of humanity as revealed in Scripture and Christmas Carols. That story begins Read the full article →

The Last Purple Candle

Last year, we bought our first ever advent wreath, complete with candles.  At dinner, we light the candles, say a prayer and spend a minute talking about Jesus’ birthday. My little boys aren’t quite ready for the subtle mix of excitement and longing that’s offered in this season.  I’ve been reading our daily office lectionary Read the full article →

It is Always Advent

Sometimes I feel as though we start playing make-believe in the Advent season. We ask ourselves to imagine what it would be like to live before the birth of Jesus as people waiting for a Messiah. We read the prophet Isaiah (9:6), “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given” Read the full article →

Jesus Is…Human

In our new Advent sermon series, “Jesus is…” we want to redirect our focus from an overly simplified or sentimental explanation of Jesus back to the mystery of the the Incarnation. We found our inspiration for “Jesus Is…” in some of the commonly-held misunderstandings about the identity and nature of Jesus that popped up in Read the full article →