The greatest surprises in this season are not the ones under the tree. They are the ones intertwined throughout the Christmas story itself in such a way that you only think you know the story! For Advent this year we are exploring the unexpected dimensions of Jesus’ birth that you will never learn on the Hallmark Channel. Join us for a fresh look at Christmas and bring unexpected meaning into your holiday.
“Prayer is not the privilege of a few. It is a reality, easily accessible, for tiny children as for old men. It finds expression in innumerable ways.” (Bro. Roger of Taize) Most people feel daunted by prayer, but in fact the Christian life IS prayer, and prayer really IS possible. Our fall series will look at prayer in fresh ways to inspire and encourage you and to help take your prayer life to a new level. The Sunday messages will be unpacked in Core Groups. They will discuss and apply what is taught on Sunday. We encourage you to be part of a Core Group for the duration of the series. Check out HVC’s website for more information. Your soul will thank you!
Few books are as exciting – or as puzzling – as the Old Testament book of Daniel. Many know the thrilling stories of the first half of the book, but the last chapters are obscure and much less well-known. Filled with outlandish visions of the future that are sometimes disturbing, they are ultimately encouraging for people facing a culture that is antagonistic to their faith. The power of its predictions is matched only by the contentiousness of its critics, and not all of the predictions have yet come to pass. Seeing God’s faithfulness in the fulfillment of the predictions can help us be more faithful and courageous as we face an increasingly toxic culture and as we look forward to what is yet to come.
There is a lot of talk in the air about “changing the world,” which most people think of as powerful actions with huge, visible, and immediate results. What if the Kingdom of God works differently than that? What if the way we are thinking about it is exactly the opposite of the way God usually works? That realization could be disappointing, or … it could be a relief. This three-week series looks at how God works through ordinary people and situations to bring about unexpected results. Think of it as … “the gospel for the rest of us”!
WHO WAS JESUS? He has been variously pictured as philosopher and prophet, sage and social activist, charismatic healer and mushroom-ingesting cult leader. Indeed, Jesus often suspiciously resembles the person answering the question. In this series, we are looking at how Jesus described himself. There are 7 “I am” statements in the gospel of John and we are going to look at them this summer. Together, they will help us know, love and follow him- the actual him- even more.
When things go bad in their lives people always ask why God would allow such things to happen in their lives. Not many people had it worse than the Old Testament figure, Joseph. His story is one of the truly epic ones in the Bible. For the next several weeks we are going to explore his life story and plumb the depths of God’s ways and wisdom. You will come away with your vision stretched and your hopes renewed.
The most frequent command in the Bible is to not be afraid, but how do you do that?! Fear and faith seem like perennial enemies who are always competing for dominance in our lives. It is hard sometimes to even tell who is winning, and nothing makes it more challenging than a crisis in our lives. Join us as we learn how to rely on faith and overcome fear in deeper ways than ever before.
During this tumultuous time in which everything is changing, we are going to walk together through the one story that does not change, the story that provides our hope and strength for the days ahead.
It begins with us looking at Jesus’ active submission in DOING all that was necessary to voluntarily present himself as a sacrifice on Palm Sunday (April 5).
Good Friday (April 10) looks at those final moments as the completion of his task in which all that is required is DONE through his suffering and death.
Easter (April 12) reveals how death is unDONE and defeated by the resurrection of Jesus, and the following Sunday (April 19) looks at how the ripples of that event reverse the damage in the unDOING of death and darkness as the gospel spreads throughout history and throughout time.
This series summarizes the unchanging message that changes everything.
The very word is an invitation to stretch to something new and a call to reach beyond ourselves. We are going to explore several ways our congregation can stretch to REACH others. One way we will stretch is by going on a spiritual journey to seek God’s wisdom, strength and resources for our upcoming building project. This is a rare opportunity to experience together a powerful movement of God in our lives. There will be 'spiritual ripples' flowing out for years to come as we experience this journey together. Don’t miss it!
We are visiting various threshold moments in the lives of individuals and in the life of the nation of Israel. It is important to be aware of “liminal moments” when one season of life gives way to another, especially when that moment of decision helps determine what season comes next. How can we know when we are at one of those thresholds? How should we navigate them wisely? Most importantly, what should we do – or not do – when we stand at a threshold?