John Markum

If you haven’t been to church in awhile, I hope you read this.

In ministry, we constantly see people come and go. On one hand, we have to focus on the people who will come, who will listen, who we can reach. But on the other hand, we love the people who haven’t been around. We long to see everyone growing in Christ, finding healing, and getting connected to others on the same spiritual journey. They are important to us, because we believe in the potential God has placed in them. And when we are being the church, God’s love is suppose to be flowing into us, overflowing, and pouring out on to others.

If you, or someone you know, has gotten out of the habit of being in church there are a variety of reasons you may have for not being there. Without a doubt most of them are good reasons and sound perfectly logical. So I’m not going to argue whether you have good reasons to miss or not. Instead let me give you a few reasons to come back. And not just show up again, but really get connected and belong. And if you do not have a church, or have been looking for a place to worship, I hope you’ll consider LifeCity Church, here in Santa Clara, CA…

  1. It feels right – You know you would have a clearer conscious. If you truly belong to Christ, then there is a Holy Conscience inside of you telling you that you need to come back and be connected.
  2. Worship – I missed church a week ago because I had family in town. The week I returned, I realized how much I missed our worship on Saturdays. Not just the songs. I could listen to most of them at home on my own. But I missed singing with my church and worshiping together with them. It’s something powerful!
  3. The Word – By the teaching and preaching of the Bible, God challenges us. Yes, you can/should read the Bible on your own. No, that is not enough.
  4. Relationships – You need people. People need you. You are a part of a whole. When you’re gone, the whole suffers. And so do you. We grow closer to God when we grow closer to each other. (John 17)
  5. Purpose – You get to use your time and talents to be a part of helping other people reach their full potential in Christ. Every ministry plays a significant part, and you get the opportunity to unite your potential with that of others.

Come to church… I know you probably have a legitimate reason for being gone. But you’re missing out! God is alive and doing powerful things in His church. I know here at LifeCity, this Fall season is going to be epic! And the rest of this summer is building up for it.

Instead of finding a reason not to be there, challenge yourself to make a way to come back. In fact, just get back in church this weekend. Be ready to have a front-row seat to see what God is going to do! You’ll be blessed for making it!

Pastor John

Proactive Prayer

In the Christian sub-culture, there is one phrase that seems to have become a stagnant cliche : “I’m praying about it.” What’s discouraging is that it is often a false statement also. “Ok, I didn’t really pray about it, I just thought about it, but God knows what I meant.” Yeah, God understands it: we’re lazy.

But what if there were something different about our prayers? What if we really believed that God was going to show up and respond to our situations because we asked Him to? What if we started living and acting with such certainty in God’s ability to come through for us that our choices after praying reflected an expectation for God to show up? What if we made bold – even risky – decisions for the kingdom of God because we genuinely believed God would be in it? Well that would be proactive prayer, which is not content to just pray about it, but to make plans to see God do it.

There was once a small country church in a rural, farm community where most of the folks’ livelihood came from their crops. The area was going through a drought, and crops were being lost as a result. The situation was looking pretty serious, so the pastor of the country church called for the whole church to pray and fast and ask God to send the rain and sustain them, calling on His promises to be a Provider to His people. They were to fast and pray until the following Sunday, when they would pray together as a church for the rain. But as people were showing up, the pastor was scolding them for their lack of faith in God to provide. They argued back, “But preacher! We do believe God will bring the rain. We’ve fasted and prayed all week expecting God to send the rain. Honest!” But the pastor snapped back, “Then where is your umbrella!?!”

Where do you get that kind of confidence that not only asks God to provide, but then takes action in expectation of Him to answer? How can you be that sure? You pray according to God’s will. How do you know God’s will? Simple: His word. God’s will is in God’s Word. Claim the promises of God’s Word in your life and walk in confidence that God is going to do what He promised He would. The difference between faith and hope is that hope says, “God I’m asking for this, and I want You to do it.” Faith says, “God, I’m asking for this, and You said You would do it.”

What are some things from the Word of God that You can claim as promises? I’ll share some of those thoughts later. In the meantime, look in His Word for yourself and discover what God has promised for His people.



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