May 19, 2023
Hello Grace Vineyard and Friends of Grace!
Another week has zipped by and it’s time for our Weekly Update Email once again. I’m preparing for another wonderfully full weekend, but I try to maintain of rhythm of regularly pausing in the spirit of the “Shepherd’s Psalm” – “The Lord is my Shepherd/I lack nothing/He makes me lie down in green pastures/He leads me beside still waters/He restores my soul” (Psalm 23). In that spirit, I keep in mind 2 realities that are simultaneously true about my life in the Kingdom of God. First, I am deeply, profoundly loved by my Father in Heaven, and that identity is the foundation from which I live and derive the resource of love I need for both loving God and loving my neighbor as myself. The second reality is that life in the Kingdom of God is a matter of spiritual warfare, where the powers of God’s Kingdom are at war with the kingdom of darkness, undoing the works of Satan as we partner with Jesus to bring wholeness to the brokenness of humanity all around us. There’s rest in the Lord, and there’s simultaneously warfare empowered by the Presence of the Holy Spirit. I guess that might just be another way of saying we live in “the ‘already’ and the ‘not yet'”. If you’ve been hanging around Grace Vineyard the last few months, I hope that all makes sense, cuz that’s the thrust of much of the teaching and equipping we’ve been up to this year.
I just got back from the beach where I experienced the blessing of baptizing a few new followers of Jesus at 5:30 tonight. Isn’t that exciting? After that, I stuck around for Jesus Party beginning at 6:22 and had some great spiritual interactions as always happens there. (In case you don’t know, Jesus Party is an event led by our great friends Dustin and Nina Nelson on the beach near lifeguard tower #2 every Friday night at 6:22pm. They have food, music, a fire, testimonies, scripture reading, prayer, and more–it’s like its name says, a party with Jesus at the center.) That’s how spiritual gifts generally work – get in the habit of praying for people, and while you’re praying for people and listening to the Holy Spirit he’ll often give you gifts. In this case I saw a vision of the guy doing a certain thing. I won’t go into the details, other than to say when I described to the guy what I saw, he said it totally made sense to him regarding something he was going through right then and it was super encouraging for him. It can seem so simple when the Spirit gives you a little gracelet for somebody, but it can be so profound and encouraging for them. And that makes a nice segue into what I want to tell you next…
This Sunday – Empowering, Episode 5
We’re almost to the finish line in our Empowered series. Next Sunday, May 28th, is Pentecost Sunday, and that will be the final episode in this series. This weekend I’m calling the message, “Inward & Outward – expecting and pursuing repeated infillings & outflowings of the Holy Spirit”. That’s kind of a mouthful, isn’t it?! We’re going to understand a little more of what we as Christians can both expect and pursue in our relationship with the Holy Spirit. There is an infilling of God’s Spirit at work internally in our lives as He continually completes the work of salvation, forming us into Christlikeness, and there is also the outflowing of God’s Spirit like a rushing river through our lives as He empowers us to extend the Kingdom of God (the rule and reign of God) in our world. Something some folks miss is that the story of the early followers of Jesus (in the Bible book of Acts) illustrates repeated infillings of the Spirit. We can expect and pursue this experience in our lives. I hope you’ll join me on Sunday at 9:30 for another adventure in the Word.
Last week we took a look at how God reflects His image in us, focusing especially on how God uses motherhood to reflect His very nature. If you missed it, I think you’ll find it helpful and encouraging for your life. As usual, we’ve posted it on our YouTube channel for your convenience. Here’s where you can find it:
As we get near the end of May, I want to remind you about the Marriage Getaway August 25th-27th as the early bird pricing ends on May 31st. Kim and I are registered, and we hope many of you will join us this year.
Go to this link – 2023 Marriage Getaway Couple Weekend Registration – for all the details and to register. Also, check out this short video describing the getaway:
Face to Face, May 26th
Ladies, it’s time for another Friday night Face to Face. This time you’ll be meeting at Sheri Winter’s beautiful home for some sweet fellowship and face-to-face time with each other and the Lord in worship, the Word, and prayer ministry. It’s so important for us to get to get together in person at gatherings like this to be encouraged in our lives. Kim Ohst will be bringing a message (and I guess I’m biased, but let me just say SHE’S AWESOME!) and Ammee Huzil will be leading worship. It’s 7pm on Friday, May 26th, at 4538 Coronado Dr. Oceanside. If you’d like more information, contact Kim at either 760-519-4558, or email@example.com.
Jesus Walk, May 27
We’ve been talking about for a while, but it’s now upon us — Next Saturday May 27th at 10am – we are having another Jesus Walk. We’ll meet at the Oceanside Parking Structure and walk along the coast, sing songs of worship, and facilitate encounters with people (aka “Holy Hello’s”) along the way. You heard stories from the last Jesus Walk a few weeks ago (you can watch those at this link: https://youtu.be/Ae7bHNdUBDg), and the excitement was high as we asked Mark Newell to lead us in another one. Thank you Mark for putting this together! If you need more info, please reach out to Mark at 760-715-1611.
New Online Prayer for Youth Zoom Meeting
Prayer for Grace Vineyard Youth and America’s Youth – Wednesday evenings 6 – 6:30pm by Zoom. We are seeing the Lord moving among the youth in Oceanside and in other areas of America like Asbury and we want to pray into what the Lord is doing. Irene Archer is leading the prayer. If you have any questions, please call her at 760.672.6460. Here’s the Zoom link: https://us04web.zoom.
And that’s it for this weekly update. Have a wonderful Saturday, and I’ll see you Sunday morning as we worship Jesus, receive comfort in the love of the Father, and stir ourselves up in the Spirit. It’s going to be great!
with blessings and love,
Tithes and Offerings Online
THANKS for taking ownership in the life and ministry of Grace Vineyard! And thanks to all of you who are stepping into a lifestyle of generosity with your tithes and offerings. It really does take all of us doing our part with the income God has entrusted to us for His church. If you’d like to give your tithe or offering online, click the donate button below.
Don’t forget we’re needing to build up our building fund for some important improvements around our Grace Vineyard home. If you’d like to give a special offering, just make sure to mention “building fund” in the “what’s this donation for” section of the online giving system. Thanks!