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Defining Moments

February 9th, 2012 | Posted by bvosler in Jimmy - (Comments Off on Defining Moments)

There are moments in every believer’s life when we must step towards the
unknown or unfamiliar in order to carry out obedience to God. During these times
its customary and even biblical for us to lean upon the Lord with much prayer and
supplication (Isaiah 26:3-4, Phil.4:6-7). However for many of us, once the end is in
sight and our deliverance is apparent, we often fail to take the time to personally
reflect and learn from those defining moments.

Personally, for my wife (Amber) and I, it was just about eight months ago, we
encountered one of our own defining moments. Our move to Metro Detroit and
decision to answer the ministerial call at HPBC continues to serve as a personal
vehicle for spiritual growth. Everyday we understand our relocation was less about
the time we changed the physical place we call home, and more and more about the
opportunity God gave us to experience His faithfulness on a new level.

Many young adults are facing similar decisions in their own lives. For some it may
be where to attend college or what to study. For others it may be pulling the trigger
on a career move or even whether deciding it’s time to tie the knot or start a family.
Whatever it may be, defining moments are waiting at our doorstep. The key is to
understand how God will use those for our spiritual growth.

As many of you know, the Old Testament is loaded with individuals who faced their
own defining moments with God. Studying these accounts teaches us how He used
people just like you and me to play important roles in His rescue mission to save
all people through His Son Jesus Christ. Therefore, the Young Adult Ministry has
recently embarked on a yearlong journey at the beginning of 2012 to study through
the entire Old Testament and exploring these accounts together.

If you’re a college student, young professional or young married couple, I personally
invite you to join us as we learn more about these Divine encounters in the Old
Testament and how to apply them to our own defining moments with God. We meet
every Sunday morning at 10:15 in the Student Center.

-Jimmy Smith, Young Adults Ministry

Tradition

February 6th, 2012 | Posted by bvosler in Dave K - (16,520 Comments)

My times with the Lord recently have led me to contemplate the traditions we have. Some of us loathe tradition and are constantly looking to break-out and experience God in new & fresh ways. Others of us are drawn to reflect upon the character of God more intimately through the same traditions that some despise. Are traditions right or wrong? When should we hold on to them and when should we let them go? As I was reading one morning, I found D.A. Carson’s thoughts to be helpful in this area.  Dr. Carson points out that the word tradition or traditions can be used in either a positive or negative way:

“The word tradition simply refers to what is handed on. If what is handed on is apostolic teaching, then traditions are a very good thing (e.g., 1 Cor. 11:2); if what is handed on conflicts with what God says, then traditions are unhelpful and dangerous (See Mark 7: 1-13).

{In today’s world we often}make distinctions on the basis of the social effect of traditions, not on the basis of whether or not they are true. But in the New Testament, traditions are praised or criticized not on the basis of their social function but in the light of their conformity to or departure from the Word of God.  In Mark 7:1-13, the traditions that Jesus condemns are those that allow people to sidestep what the Scripture clearly says.

Dr. Carson further points out that we:

“sometimes embrace traditions that effectively domesticate the Word of God. These may be traditional interpretations of Scripture, or traditional ecclesiastical practices, or traditional forms of conduct that are “allowed” in our circles but that are a long way from holy Scripture. In every case, fidelity to Christ mandates reformation by the Word of God.

My prayer for the family of HPBC is that we will be in the Word daily and that we will allow ourselves to be reformed by the truth of Scripture.  Let’s hand on to the next generation those traditions & practices that are solely based upon God’s Word.

David Kuntzman – Business Administrator

On Purpose & With Passion

February 2nd, 2012 | Posted by admin in Dave - (21,828 Comments)

It was recently recommended that I read a pamphlet written by Jim Collins, the author of Good to Great, applicable principles directed toward those who lead in the “social sector”.   I was struck in particular by one of the key people-resource values.  Focus on getting the right people . . . who are productively neurotic, those who are self motivated and self disciplined, who wake up everyday compulsively driven to the best they can because it is simply a part of their DNA.  Lack of resources is not an excuse for lack of rigor. I guess we all wish we had things a little bit better.

This principle from his laboratory of the business world prompted me to acknowledge once again that the choicest servants of God that I know of are those who do life with passion and purpose from the inside out – motivated and disciplined because it is a part of who they are as servants of the King.

What is particularly notable is that I have the privilege of observing and experiencing this with others who live with this kind of compulsion every day.  Rarely does a day go by that I am not in awe of the men and women, young people to senior citizens, who show up as volunteers or paid staff, on both Sundays and/or weekdays, and do with energy and passion what it is that God has called and gifted them to do in His kingdom ministry.  And they do it, fully resourced or not.  It is obvious to me that the motivation and discipline they have comes from a passion to work for, and to put on display, the glory of God.  I can’t help but believe that same passion to do their best for Christ sake, is the same heartbeat they have in the workplace and in the home.

So I’m thinking –  what would happen among those that we are called to impact for Christ, if each day out of the intensity of our love for Christ, we acknowledged His passion for people, and get engaged with a compulsive  and energetic desire to glorify Him in whatever we do – in word or deed  (cf.  II Corinthians 5:17; Ephesians 6:7; I Corinthians 10:31 Romans 12:1, 2).

It seems that as a new creation in Christ with a transformed DNA, having this kind of purpose and passion would be normative for Believers.

-Dave Borror, Ministry Administration

Winter Camp

January 25th, 2012 | Posted by admin in Brian | Student Ministries - (Comments Off on Winter Camp)

The Herd (middle school) and Crash (high school) ministries had an amazing time at our annual winter retreat January 14-16 and I wanted to share four things with you that jumped out to me from that weekend.

First, we were extremely blessed by our volunteers (not our normal staff, I’ll get to them in a minute). We have a group comprised of adults in the church, some parents some not, that go up all weekend to serve the students. They make all the food, serve all the food, wash all the dishes, clean up etc… Some are parents who would otherwise have a kid free weekend at home. Some are just people who love the youth ministries and want to help out. We are so blessed by them every year and are amazed that many of them do this every year for us. It is also a great picture of the different ages and generations of HPBC coming together and serving for a united purpose and it is powerful to see.

Second, we were able to take CBC of Brighton’s middle school group and Bell Creek’s youth groups with us on the retreat. Andrew Williams is the youth pastor at CBC and Dan Baughman is the youth pastor at Bell Creek. Both are men who have grown up at our church and in our youth group and have also worked at HPBC at different times. It is so encouraging to see not only what God is doing in our youth group but in other groups through men that we know and have had the opportunity to work with.

Third, our volunteer staff people are amazing. This group of staff are the people that work regularly with the Herd and Crash. They actually paid to go on the retreat and sleep with smelly middle schoolers and stay up until crazy hours talking with students. We could not do what we do without them and they do it all with a smile on their face and such energy and positivity that it is amazing. We were also able to take 3 SAM (Special Abilities Ministry) students with us for the first time which was a huge blessing.

Lastly, we have a unique relationship with the Romulus basketball team. Many of you know Josh Baker who is a member at our church. Up until this year he was a coach for the team. Through this connection, and an unbelievably gracious sponsor, we have been able to have the team come to some of our summer camps in the past. This was the first year we have had them up to winter camp and it was amazing. Through this same sponsor we were also able to take a number of basketball players from SCS who had never been to any of our retreats. Seeing those guys with tears in their eyes singing Great I Am will not be something that any of us will soon forget. A couple of the guys even accepted Christ!

There were many other highlights and powerful times of worshipping God and learning from His word, but those are the 4 that really jumped out to me.

Thanks to all of you who played a part, we couldn’t do it without you. And please keep the students, especially those who made important decisions, in your prayers as they are back into normal life and having to deal with all the things pulling them away from Jesus.

We are remembering what God has done for us and because of that we have faith that God will accomplish the hopes that He gave us that weekend.

-Brian

Welcome

January 25th, 2012 | Posted by admin in Uncategorized - (Comments Off on Welcome)

Welcome to our blog!

We hope to give you an inside look at some of the ministries of Highland Park Baptist Church and more importantly some insights into the hearts and minds of some of the full time ministry staff.

We are going to update the blog a couple times a week so make sure you check back with us regularly or even better add us to your RSS reader. Also, if you read something you like help spread the word on Facebook or Twitter, we would appreciate it!

We would also love to hear back from you on our posts so please leave us a comment. We hope it blesses you.