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  1. Use Your Words by

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    Use Your Words a Word from Pastor Bryan Edwards of The Rock Church in Utah

    There is power in the name of Jesus. There is power in the Gospel when we proclaim it with our mouths. We, as Christians, have been given a supernatural power and it is on the tip of all of our tongues. In the message of the Cross is the power of God to change people’s hearts. This is a profound truth about the influence and value that we (as Christians) have in this world. It’s for this very reason God has us in this world. He wants to pour out His love to others and bring more people to His Son. In order to do this, we need to use our words.

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    I want to remind you, brothers and sisters, not to waste this incredible gift. You have it so that you can give it to others. Take a minute today to meditate on these truths revealed to us in Scripture. Let them motivate and encourage you about the influence you can have in this world.

    I (your name here) should share the Gospel with others because:

    • Jesus has command me to. (Matthew 28:19)
    • People will perish without the Gospel. (2 Thessalonians 1:8-9)
    • The Gospel has the power to save. (Romans ‪1:16‬)
    • I will be rewarded by Jesus. (2 Timothy 4:8)
    • It’s the most loving thing I can do. (1 Thessalonians 2:8)
    • It’s a privilege to share my faith. (1 Thessalonians 2:4)
    • It’s essential to my identity as a disciple of Christ. (Matthew ‪4:19‬)
    • I won’t be able share the Gospel in heaven. (Hebrews 9:27)
    • It will strengthen my faith. (1 Peter ‪3:15‬)
    • It will mature me spiritually. (Philemon 1:6)
    • It will grow me to be more like Jesus. (Philippians 1:6)

    When you consider this list, it’s a no brainer as to WHY you should share your faith. But, I ask you friend, WILL you share you faith? There is a great need for you to go out into the world and proclaim the saving news of Jesus Christ. In order to do that, you need to use your words.

    Will you pray for God to give all of us more courage, more boldness, more faith, and more power to use our words to tell others about our perfect Savior? There will be nothing sweeter than on that day when we are called home and we hear King Jesus say, “Well done, good and faithful servant… Enter into the joy of your master.” — Matthew 25:21

    The thought of that makes me very excited to go home. Until then, we have much work to do!

    See you out there,

    Bryan

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  2. United by

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    United a word from Pastor Tony D'Amico

    “Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God. Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love. Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace.” – Ephesians 4:1-4

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    One of the hardest things we need to do in the church is to learn to live in unity. We need to forgive each other’s faults. When we are part of a church, we are part of a family. And we all know how hard that can be at times. Remember when Uncle Frank came over and the Pepsi got spilled? Things can get really heated. We can have disagreements with each other. It’s going to happen. But, as a Christian, Paul reminds us that BECAUSE of the love that has been given to us through Jesus Christ, we are to MAKE ALLOWANCES for each other’s faults.

    I love my brother, my sisters, and my parents. We are very close to each other. There are times, however, that disagreements come up. But, it’s because I love them so much, that in all humility and gentleness, we work through our issues. I don’t leave them and go try to find another family that I think will work better for me. I have never given up on them and I never will. I love them. I feel the same way about my church family. God has placed us within our church family and wants us to “do life” with them. Within this family, we get the chance to apply these verses!

    It’s so much easier to bail when things get hard. God wants us to stay and work things out. You know, at some point in my life, I will no doubt offend you. And at some point, you’re going to offend me. It will happen. My prayer is that as a church, we can learn to ALWAYS be humble and gentle. To be patient with each other and make allowance for each other’s faults because of LOVE. We need to make every effort to bind ourselves together with peace. If we let dissention and division get into our hearts and into our church, satan will start to divide us. When we are divided, we cannot stand together.

    Let’s be a church that is known for loving Jesus and loving each other.

    United –

    Tony

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  3. United In Christ by

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    United In Christ A Word by Pastor Steve McInroy of the Rock Church Utah

    When closing an email or letter to a brother or sister in the Lord, I will oftentimes use the statement, “United in Christ, Mac”. Sometimes, when I am in a hurry, I will simply put, “United, Mac”. This statement has a significant and deep meaning to me that reaches far beyond any other closing I can think of.

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    Even best regards, sincerely, your friend, or lovingly, just won’t cut it when I am talking about the relationship I have with other Believers through the blood of Christ. Think about it. The relationship we have with other heaven-bound Believers is more than life long — it’s endless. It’s for all eternity! Whoa!

    To send these words (and this thought) to others is beyond what my mind can even begin to understand. The truth is that we will be (no, wait a minute), we are, together IN CHRIST! Brothers and sisters, we are so much more than friends or family. We, as Believers, are collectively the Body of Christ right now! I’m passionately using all of these exclamation points, not because I’m yelling. Rather, because I am in awe of the grace which God extends to us so that we can have the privilege of being United in Christ!

    These verses really encourage me. “Now may the God of endurance and comfort give you unity with one another in accordance with Christ Jesus, so that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Receive one another, then, just as Christ also received you, to God’s glory.” — Romans 15:5-7

    God created us to be a people of absolutely incredible individuality. Much like snowflakes, our fingerprints are uniquely ours alone. Let’s be honest, however. This individuality can make it difficult to live in unity (on the same planet, same continent, same county, same state, same city, same neighborhood, and yes even in the same home) at times. We can be misunderstood. I’ve been known to even argue with myself at times.

    Many people in our world feel misunderstood and I think it largely stems from being apart from Christ. When we are in Christ, I believe God manifests Himself in us and through us and we become His body. Brothers and sisters, sometimes I think that is all we really need to understand. I think that is what the world needs to know. Tell everyone you know!

    United in Christ,

    Mac

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  4. Press On by

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    Press On a Word by Pastor Steele Croswhite of the Rock Church Utah

    “Oh, that we might know the Lord! 
Let us press on to know him. He will respond to us as surely as the arrival of dawn 
or the coming of rains in early spring.” — Hosea 6:3

    There are so many things we can devote our time to — so many things we can give our lives for. Many people around us have decided to give their full allegiance to work, or money, or family, or success. Many more have bought into the foolish idea — “You only live once so, live it up!”

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    As you reflect upon this past year, ask yourself, “What have I given my time to this year? What have I have given my life for this year? How would those around me answer that question about me?”

    This verse reminds us that we are to “press on”, to be devoted to, and to fight for, our relationship with Jesus! Sure, it is good to be devoted to our families, to be hard workers, and to be successful in our efforts. But, how much more should we “press on” to know the Lord?!

    I have often prayed that God would make me a man who knows Him more than any other man on earth. I know it may seem selfish to ask that of the Lord, but it’s my genuine, spirit-filled desire. I want to KNOW God.

    To be honest, the reason I pray this way is because of the second half of this verse in Hosea — “He will respond to us as surely as the arrival of dawn, or the coming of rains in early spring.” When you think of refreshment, when you think of renewal, when you think of new beginnings, it is nearly impossible not to think of the breaking morning light and the life giving waters of spring rain!

    For the Christian, God asks us to press on to know Him. In return, His promises to refresh, to renew, and to bring life.

    This year, press on to know the Lord, because spring is coming!

    Steele

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  5. Crowdfunding by

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    Crowdfunding a Word from Pastor Josh Whitney of the Rock Church Utah

    Have you heard of crowdfunding or crowdsourcing? Companies like GoFundMe or KickStarter are raising hundreds of millions of dollars annually for personal needs and creative projects. A wide variety of needs are met with tools like these. Costs associated with mission trips, medical bills, or family emergencies have been met repeatedly through generous donations from people.

    Our Christian duty is to care for the poor and needy. The Old and New Testament is full of instruction. For example, Jesus told us, “Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with moneybags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moth destroys.” — Luke 12:33

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    But Jesus also warns us of a potential danger with giving: “Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven. Thus, when you give to the needy, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” — Matthew 6:1-4

    Jesus strongly believed in taking care of legitimate needs. But, in this verse in Matthew, Jesus instructs us to be anonymous in our giving. That is also a unique dimension of crowdfunding websites like GoFundMe. Donors can list their name or be “anonymous”. Jesus would challenge us on two fronts when it comes to giving to the needy and poor. First, sell something valuable to meet the need. Second, don’t tell a soul.

    Praying that Jesus helps us be more sacrificial and anonymous in our care for the needy,

    Josh

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  6. One Accord by

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    One Accord worship leading event and night of worship with the SLC Mass Choir

    What an amazing opportunity this will be — a chance for worship leaders throughout the SLC Valley to come together to learn and grow (January 28 at Capital Church 1010E 700S). That day will be followed by a Night of Worship on January 29 at 6:00 p.m. at the Point Church (5133S Heath Ave., Kearns, 84113). This event will be hosted by Tim Disdrom from the SLC Mass Choir and is free and open to the public. Our own Steele Croswhite will be performing and you won’t want to miss this time.

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  7. Outreach Class by

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    Outreach Class by the Rock Church Utah

    Have you ever wanted to share your faith in Jesus with others but didn’t know how? Do you need answers for basic spiritual questions you get asked by friends and family? If you’d like to know how to systematically and effectively share your faith in Christ, the upcoming Outreach Class is for you! Starting Sunday, January 29 from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m., at the Draper Church, the Outreach Class will run for 15 weeks. You will gain the necessary tools through teachings, verses memorization and practice, to confidently share the Gospel. Sign up on-line at the link below. The cost is $15 to cover all materials. Contact Jim McFall with any questions.

    Register Now

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  8. Get Connected by

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    Get Connected a Word by Pastor Bill Young of the Rock Church Utah

    “All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.” — Acts 2:44-47

    I’m amazed at the effect the Apostle Paul’s young protégé (Timothy) has had on the world. What’s even more interesting is that we know almost nothing about him. We do know that Timothy was saved as a direct result of Paul’s ministry during his first missionary journey. On Paul’s second journey, he decided to take Timothy with him. And the world has never been the same!

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    Timothy’s impact on the First Century Church (and on us) is incalculable. His name is mentioned 17 times in ten New Testament books. Two of the letters Paul wrote to him are included in the New Testament. In Acts 16 and 2 Timothy, we learn that his mother (Eunice) was a believer and his grandmother was Lois. We also know that his dad was a non-believing Greek.

    Other than that, we know relatively little about him. In fact, pastor Robert F. Horton wrote this concerning Timothy: “We have no words from his lips, no letters from his pen. Paul loved him; that is all. Timothy comes to us as a teenager and then vanishes, never to be forgotten, never to be known, loved not for his own sake, but because Paul loved him.” (Pastoral Epistles)

    Wow! Think of it. God connected Paul and Timothy in relationship and God used them to change the world. Not doctrine. Not creeds. Not rules and regulations. Just relationship.

    As I mentioned in my message this past weekend, it is critically important for you and me to be connected in relationships within the church. You have that opportunity in Small Groups. I want to encourage you (as the spring semester of Small Groups kicks off), to commit yourself to being connected in relationships with others.

    Make a life changing decision to lead a group or join a group. Who knows, maybe it will be you who changes the world?!

    Connecting,

    Bill

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  9. Resolutions by

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    Resolutions A Word by Pastor Bryan Edwards of The Rock Church in Utah

    Well, whether you are ready for it or not, 2017 is here! I’m sure that you (like me and many others) may have already made some New Year’s resolutions?! I’d like to ask you a few things about your resolutions.

    What is it that you are planning on accomplishing this year? Are any of your resolutions focused on Jesus?

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    I asked myself those same questions a few years back. The thought of “What am I resolved to do for Jesus this year?” really made me stop and think. With a new year in front of me, my “Resolution to God” is simply this — I will make every opportunity in my life into an opportunity to be useful for Jesus!

    My son has a quote hanging in his bedroom (from one of my heroes in the faith — John Wesley). It reads, “God grant that I may never live to be useless.” That is a truly powerful prayer. It is one that I am claiming as my very own this year. I am asking God to allow me to be more USEFUL for His Kingdom (Matthew 6:33), to be more USEFUL in the lives of the lost (1 Peter 3:15), and in my prayers (Colossians 4:2), and to be more USEFUL in the lives of those hurting (2 Corinthians 1:3-4).

    Truthfully, I realize in committing myself to these kind of goals, failure is certain. So, that’s why my resolution isn’t really about me, it’s about what I am asking God to do IN me.

    In John 15:5 Jesus said, “I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.” This is the promise I am going to rest in. I’m going to hold more tightly than ever to Jesus this year. I am going to cling more closely to Jesus this year. I am going to abide more deeply in Jesus this year. I am convinced that the closer I am to my Savior, the more useful I will be in this world.

    That is my goal this year — to make every day and every opportunity into one that is USEFUL for Him.

    What about you, Christian? Would you consider joining me?

    Resolved,

    Bryan

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  10. Reflect and Plan by

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    Reflect and Plan

    With 2016 coming to a close and 2017 just around the corner, this is the perfect time to reflect on all that God has done in your life this past year. It is also a great time to plan some goals for the upcoming year. Some of those goals might be to read through your Bible or have better quiet times (or a better prayer life)?! It’s always good to know what you’re going to do. I’d love to share some really amazing resources that can help give you that plan for this next year.

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    THROUGH-THE-BIBLE READING PLANS

    If you want to get through the entire Bible in one year, here are a few plans that will only take about 15 minutes a day.

    One-Year Reading Plan:
    This plan consists of reading a section from the Old Testament, New Testament, Psalms, and Proverbs. It provides variety in your daily reading. Download it, print it off and use the reading plan as a bookmark or a checklist.

    The One-Year Chronological Bible:
    This plan is arranged in the order the events actually occurred. This also has reading every day broken up by selected passages. It is a very interesting way to see how all the events correlate throughout the Bible. Download it, print it off and use the reading plan as a bookmark or a checklist.

    The Discipleship Journal Reading Plan:
    This plan is very similar to the One-Year Reading Plan in that you read a little bit from the Old Testament, New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs. The difference is that this plan is for five days a week. This gives you some flexibility in your reading throughout the week. Download it, print it off and use the reading plan as a bookmark or a checklist.

    SECTIONS OF THE BIBLE

    If trying to read the entire Bible seems like too much for you, here is an option that focuses on specific sections of the Bible.

    ESV Outreach Bible Plan:
    This is only a six-month plan that takes you through the New Testament. Download it, print it off and use the reading plan as a bookmark or a checklist.

    Some additional thoughts are to grab a notebook and journal throughout the year. Write down your prayers, verses that are speaking to you from your readings, and how God is teaching you. Then, next year, you can review it. It’s a great way to see how God works in your life!

    We have most of these resources listed out on our website on our Resources Page!

    Let Your Life Be Renewed –

    Tony

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  11. God Loves You by

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    God Loves You a word from pastor Billy Johnson of the Rock Church Utah

    God loves you! Jesus’ coming into this world and going through everything He did (including His death) was God’s gift to you. This is the heartbeat of the Bible and the wonderful message of Christmas. He loves you.

    Isaiah 9:6 says, “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

    Look again at what that verse says. “For to us….”. Are you catching it? It says, “for to us a son is given…” Jesus is a gift from God to us!

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    I’ve received a lot of really amazing gifts from people who love me. But, I’ve never received a gift like that. A gift that is all-powerful and all-knowing. A gift that will never break or wear out. A royal gift who rules with peace. There is only one gift that meets all of that criteria and that is Jesus Christ. He alone is the key to peace and relationship with God.

    This is why we look forward to Christmas all year. This is why we generously give gifts and graciously accept them from others. It’s because God was generous and gracious to us first.

    I pray we will honor and glorify Jesus as we celebrate Christmas this year. We need to remember that God loves us!

    Merry Christmas,

    Billy

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  12. He Has Done Great Things For Us by

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    He Has Done Great Things For Us A Word by Pastor Steve McInroy of The Rock Church Utah

    “When the LORD brought back the captive ones of Zion, we were like those who dream. Then our mouth was filled with laughter and our tongue with joyful shouting; then they said among the nations, “The LORD has done great things for them.” The LORD has done great things for us; we are glad.” — Psalm 126:1-3

    I recently read these verses and couldn’t help but reflect on some of the great things God has done in and through the people of The Rock Church (over the last 17 years).

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    One of the original banners we used to hang up at the Alta Canyon Recreation Center (where we met for church) said, The Salt City Rock — We’re Glad You’re Here. We have been so blessed to see so many lives changed as people come to Jesus. I am so glad WE are here to participate in what God is doing in Utah.

    The Amplified Bible expounds on verse one (above) as follows: we were like those who dreamed (it seemed unreal). When the Spirit of God is moving, it really can seem unreal and sometimes like a dream. The people of The Rock Church are really just a rag-tag group of everyday people. We have all kinds of strengths and weaknesses. Every single one of us has a unique story and each one of us brings something of God into this family. God uses it all. He has given us an incredibly unique opportunity to reach people for Jesus in Utah. I believe He is not even close to being done yet. The harvest is extremely ripe and the workers are few.

    Please prepare your hearts and minds for what God has us involved in right now (during this holiday season). Our church is bursting at the seams with visitors. We expect our Christmas programs to bring more visitors than we’ve ever had. Christmas weekend will provide one of the best opportunities you can imagine to celebrate the birth of Jesus with our friends, neighbors, and co-workers.

    Be ready and alert to share the love of Jesus — He IS doing great things!

    Glad we’re here!

    Mac

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  13. Delight in the Lord by

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    Delight in the Lord A Word By Pastor Steele Croswhite

    “Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires.” — Psalm 37:4

    This past week, God reminded me how true this verse really is. As many of you already know, but I was privileged to release a full-length worship album with The Rock Music on a global level. I was also so thankful to be able to perform at our CD release party last Friday night. Thanks to all of you who have helped make this successful so far!

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    The reason this verse is personal to me today is simply because I have been praying (on a regular basis for 13 years), for the Lord to work in mighty ways through The Rock Music. This past week He answered that prayer.

    The Rock Music has partnered with a record label to promote and market our newest album Awakened By Hope, and by God’s grace, we even reached Number 20 on iTunes new releases.

    I know God is not done working yet and I am convinced that the best is yet to come. But, I am humbled to see how with pure and simple daily devotion to Him (delighting in the Lord), He answers the heart’s desires.

    Let this verse be a reminder to all of us that God sees you and longs to bless you as His child. As we take delight in Him, He moves in our hearts and works our prayers for His great glory and our joy!

    Delighted,

    Steele

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  14. Calmed My Soul by

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    Calmed My Soul A Word By Pastor Josh Whitney

    “O Lord, my heart is not lifted up; my eyes are not raised too high; I do not occupy myself with things too great and too marvelous for me. But I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child is my soul within me. O Israel, hope in the Lord from this time forth and forevermore.” — Psalm 131:1

    Is your life stressing you out right now? Is it the political situation? Maybe it’s the anxiety of paying your bills while preparing for the holidays? Maybe you worry about your work or the economy? Life has a way of causing us stress all of the time. Sickness, finances, holidays, family, and work can all add to our anxiety. When I read this Psalm the other day, however, I was encouraged.

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    You see, there are many things outside of our control. There are things we don’t understand and questions we don’t have good answers for. Sometimes it feels like we are carrying the weight of the world on our shoulders.

    Verse one commands us to not occupy ourselves with these things. The second verse commands us to calm and quiet our soul. Calm and quiet like a child with its mother. Imagine a mom (or dad) holding their sleeping infant. The child is relaxed and sleeping soundly knowing that their parent will take care of them. That is exactly how we are to put our hope in God.

    We need to be trained to trust in God to supply our needs and not worry about the future. Church, don’t stress out about all of the things that are too great for you. Calm your soul. Put your hope forever in God!

    Calmed,

    Josh

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  15. Bright Friday by

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    Bright Friday a Word from Pastor Bill Young

    “For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus: that if One died for all, then all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.” — 2 Corinthians 5:14-15 (NIV)

    Black Friday will be here in just a few days. I’m sure many of you are eagerly anticipating the thrill of the hunt … for the perfect cheap gift! But, as this special day approaches, I’m reminded of another Black Friday back on November 28, 2008. In a New York City Wal-Mart store, a 34-year-old Wal-Mart employee was crushed to death. A crowd waiting to get into the store got out of control. Hundreds of people bull-rushed through the doors. Wal-Mart employees had to scramble on top of vending machines to get out of the way. Employees were on the intercom pleading with people to leave the store. They begged people to clear the area saying, “Please, our friend is dying.” And you know what people said back to them? “We’ve waited all night. We’re not leaving.”

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    Half a dozen people went to the hospital that day, and one man died. He was killed by a crowd rushing to save twenty bucks on a flat screen TV and few bucks on a pair of Wrangler jeans. A man was dying and people kept shopping.

    Christians, people are dying all around us. Are you still sleeping? Are you watching TV? People are dying all around me. Do I even care? I have trampled people who are dying. This convicts me because I know I have walked right past unbelievers every day without caring. That’s not what Jesus did.

    How do we love like Jesus and not trample people? As we understand the love of God, it will compel us and cause us to love like Jesus did.

    John 13:34 says, “A new commandment I give you. Love one another”. As we understand God’s love, we’ll be able to love the world. Let’s get excited about helping lost souls – and make this year be a “Bright Friday” instead.

    Shopping for Jesus,

    Bill

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  16. Creation by

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    Creation A Word by Pastor Tony D'Amico

    Do you ever feel like it’s hard to talk to people about God because you can’t think of a simple way to start the conversation? There’s actually a great “lead-in” (and one that is easily overlooked). We admire it on a daily basis, or at least we should. We live in a world where the Creation itself speaks to the divinity of God.

    Paul wrote to the Romans, “For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.” — Romans 1:19-20 (ESV)

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    Two characteristics of God (His power and His divinity) are invisible to the eye but clearly revealed in nature. They can be seen in what He has created. Everything that is designed, everything that is created, needs a creator. You don’t see a beautiful piece of art or even an attractive soda can that can appear by itself. Someone created it. Paul wanted the Romans to understand, “Look around you, look at the ocean, the stars, the sun, the animals, the mountain, the flowers, and all of the other things in we see in nature. They all point back to a Creator!”

    God reveals Himself through His Creation! The entire natural world bears witness to God through its amazing beauty, depth, design, and usefulness. This truth puts everyone in a position to be without excuse. No one can say that God has neglected to give evidence of His existence and character. The fault is with those who reject the evidence.

    You can rest in knowing that God reveals Himself to all people through His Creation. Use Gospel opportunities like these when discussing “How are you enjoying the weather?” to then talk about the wonderfully amazing God we serve! It’s a ready made “lead in” to sharing the Gospel.

    Standing in awe of our Creator –

    Tony

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  17. The Dash by

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    The Dash A Word from Pastor Tony D'Amico

    Death is interesting. It is the only thing we are guaranteed after we are born. We are not guaranteed a good life, a lot of money, success, or happiness. The only thing we know is that at some point in our lives, we’ll die. It’s good to talk about death and take some time to process it.

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    Death can come at unexpected times. It’s never something that we plan the date or time for. It’s not something that we put on our to-do list when we wake up in the morning. The date, the time, the way, is all unexpected. It comes like a thief in the night.

    We can do many things to try and delay it — eating healthy, wearing seat belts, avoiding certain activities. No matter what, however, it will still happen to each one of us. We know that. So, what do we do with the time that we have on this earth?

    When we write out a date, we typically have a starting date and an ending date. There is a separation between those two dates — it’s typically written down as a dash of some sort. That dash is where our life is lived. It is where our story is written. It is where the depth of our lives happens.

    During the time of that little dash, we learn how to walk, to talk, to ride a bike, experience love, experience heartache, joy, fear, regret, and so much more. We experience all of the life that shapes us as a person. That dash represents so much more than a divider of dates.

    A dash is short. Even when we are speaking about a race, we use the word dash as something quick. That is like our lives — fast and fleeting! Death can come at any moment.

    How would you like to be remembered when you are gone? As one who was kind? As one who took care of others? As one who loved Jesus? The Psalmist wrote, “Man is like a breath; his days are like a passing shadow.” — Psalm 144:4. How we live our lives will impact those around us (for both good bad) for all eternity. Our lives go by so quickly. We need to use them in a way that will affect eternity.

    Today, as you are going through your day, take a second to ponder what your life looks like. Take a minute and tell people that you love them. Tell people who don’t know about Jesus that He loves them and longs for a relationship with them! Make your dash count.

    Learning to live life —

    Tony

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  18. A Christmas Tea by

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    A Christmas Tea Ladies Event Saturday December 10 at 1:00p.m.

    We’d be delighted to have you join us at our women’s Christmas Tea, as we celebrate the gift of Jesus and spend some very special time together. This is a wonderful opportunity for you to get dressed up a bit, enjoy a delicious selection of foods (and tea, of course), a little Christmas music, and hear the Good News of the Gospel.

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    Plan on inviting a friend, family member, or co-worker and enjoy this meaningful tea time together. The cost is only $12.00 per person ($17.00 AFTER November 20). Sign-up deadline is December 4 (or until we reach seating capacity of 175). A gluten-free menu selection is available ONLY if you request it when you register. We can’t wait to have A Christmas Tea with you!

    Register Now

    Questions? Contact Jeanne McInroy at (801) 703-8742 or jeanne@trc.life

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  19. Suffering by

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    Suffering A Word from Pastor Billy Johnson

    “Now is my soul troubled. And what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? But for this purpose I have come to this hour.” — John 12:27

    These were Jesus’ words before He was betrayed and crucified. If anyone knows about suffering, it’s Jesus. His suffering was foretold all the way back to the book of Genesis. Isaiah 53 calls Him the “Man of Sorrows”.

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    What did Jesus do when He knew He was about to be betrayed, falsely accused, beaten to a bloody mess, mocked and hung to die on public display? He entrusted His life to the will of His Father. He was completely aware of the torture He was going to go through. He didn’t complain. He did something amazing. He prayed, “Father, glorify your name.” Then a voice came from heaven, “I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again.” — John 12: 28

    Jesus understands that there is no suffering we go through that is meaningless. Even if we don’t understand it in this lifetime, it’s not meaningless. I think about the struggles and sorrows some of you are working through right now. At times, I look around and I’m overwhelmed with sorrows and burdens that aren’t even my own. For those of you who are suffering, please know that you are not alone. God loves you so much. I pray that the “peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds” in these times of trouble. I pray that you wouldn’t waste your suffering. I pray you would choose to use it for God’s glory, to be able to look back and say, “God helped me suffer well.”

    Paul tells us in 2 Corinthians 4:17, “this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.” Christian, you need to understand that suffering and glory go hand in hand. God uses those who have suffered to help those who are suffering.

    Please know that none of your sorrow is in vain. If you are hurting, please reach out to someone. You’re not alone — you are surrounded by brothers and sisters who love you and a God who listens when you pray to Him!

    Let’s learn from Jesus’ example. Jesus prayed because He knew God listened. When we pray, God listens to us.

    Praying and believing,

    Billy

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  20. Set Free: Men’s Purity Seminar by

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    The idea of living a life of purity is rapidly fading (and will most likely will be gone in our lifetime) if God’s men don’t take a stand. Just like David’s “men of valor” helped him fight off the raiders of his time, we are calling men to a higher standard and challenging them to join us. We must act now!

    This seminar is designed to help equip men in today’s battle against the enemy of our time. Each of us has a porn shop in our pocket and we need God’s help to lead us to victory. We need to live a life steeped in self-control and set free from a stained conscience. We need men to join with us like the army of God. Men who want to lead. Men who are willing to sacrifice for their families and our dying world. Men like you?

    Please set aside this day for the Lord and bring someone with you. This is a free seminar and we’d love to have you join us: Saturday, November 19, 9:00 a.m. — 3:00 p.m., at The Rock Church in Draper (11630 S. 700 E.).

    Register Now

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  21. Awakened By Hope: The Rock Music Album Release Party by

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    The Rock Music Awakened By Hope Album Release Party

    We are beyond excited to announce the next Rock Music release entitled, Awakened By Hope! This new 15 song album is all original music from Steele Croswhite.

    On December 2 at 7:00 p.m., in celebration of the release, we will having a party at our Draper location (11630 S 700 E). You can hear all of these amazing songs live and grab a meal from a food truck. You’ll also be able to buy the new CD for yourself and for others. You’re not going to want to miss it!

    To learn more about The Rock Music visit www.therockmusic.org.

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  22. Strengthen by

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    Strengthening A Word by Pastor Steve McInroy of the Roch Church Utah

    “Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us eternal comfort and good hope by grace, comfort and strengthen your hearts in every good work and word.” — 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17

    I recently went on a retreat with some of the Draper pastors and deacons. It was a much-needed opportunity for us to get strengthened in the Lord. We were able to get away from the noise and busyness of day-to-day life. I’ve found that when we make time to simply focus on the One who gave us life, He always comes through with comfort and strength.

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    This year has been a season of change for all of us at The Rock Church. I am convinced the Lord has us in a season of strengthening. I appreciate what one of my brothers shared during our time away. He said he felt like he had been taking daily sips of water for nourishment during a very full season of ministry. But, he realized that he was simply “maintaining” spiritually rather than drinking on a deeper level.

    His words reminded me of something I was encouraged to do as a young believer. I was inspired to have consistent D.A.W.G. (Day Alone With God) days. This was an uninterrupted time for just the Lord and me. I would engage with Jesus on whatever life was throwing me at that time. I honestly feel as though I maintain a pretty good walk with the Lord. I also realize there is so much more I could pursue in my relationship with Him. I tend to leave way too much spiritual water in the glass by not drinking deeply on a consistent basis.

    I’ve decided to reinstitute this important practice of getting at least a four-hour D.A.W.G day, on a quarterly basis. When I drink deeply, then my cup overflows into all other aspects of my life. It also overflows into all the people I’m with. The Lord always strengthens me for the task at hand for when I am weak He shows Himself strong!

    I invite any of you to carve out some time in your schedule for a D.A.W.G. day. Fight for your relationship with Jesus. Drink deeply of the living water only He can provide (and do it on a consistent basis).

    Thirsty for more,

    Mac

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  23. Encourage by

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    Encourage a word by Pastor Steele Croswhite of The Rock Church in Utah

    “So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.” — 1 Thessalonians 5:11

    In the spirit of encouragement, I wanted to pass along an email that was recently sent to a few of our pastors in Draper. It so encouraged us that we wanted to pass it along to you.

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    Dear TRC,

    I came to Utah for work and found myself staying through the weekend. As Sunday approached, I started to do some research on where I could go and worship God. My last query resulted in The Rock. I attended two services that weekend and in lieu of Pastor Appreciation month, I wanted to share my experience and give thanks to the Pastors who rightfully deserve it.

    When I arrived at church, I was immediately greeted and welcomed. After learning this was my first time, he introduced me to the connections desk where I learned a little bit about the church…I went into the sanctuary and before I knew it, Pastor Steele was running over to me welcoming me. The music was incredible, uplifting and enjoyable. I felt connected with Pastor Bill throughout the service and thought the message from the Lord was clear. I loved it so much I wanted to hear it again. So that’s exactly what I did, I came back the next day and got another great experience and dived deeper into the message. However this time, Pastor Steve (Mac) was the very first one to greet me in the church. At the end of the service on my way out, Pastor Bill stopped me and thanked me for coming. There was no better feeling I could have experienced in that very moment.

    God brought me to The Rock, there’s no doubt about it. Even though I am a young adult with no children, the message about parenting really touched me. I was not brought up in a Christian household, I came from a broken family… I was reassured that there is no greater father than our savior, Jesus Christ. The experience I had at The Rock was unforgettable and one that really spoke to me. I am very honored and happy to be able to call The Rock Church my Utah church home.

    Thank you to Pastor Bill, Steele, and Steve as well as the rest of the congregation for welcoming me and giving me the opportunity to experience The Rock! Please know that you will forever be appreciated by me!

    God is on the move!

    Steele

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  24. October is Pastor Appreciation Month by

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    Pastor Appreciation Month at The Rock Church in Utah

    Did you know that October is Pastor Appreciation Month? It is! We love our Rock Pastors all year long, but during the month of October, we’d like to let them know it. Take a minute right now and think about how you could encourage one or all of the pastors at The Rock Church — it would mean so much to them! Being a pastor is hard work and it often goes unappreciated. These men work tirelessly to bless the lives of so many…teaching, counseling, planning, praying, shepherding….the list goes on and on. A note of encouragement would really make their day! You can find their email addresses on the Pastor-Staff page of our church web site so you can write them an email. Or, you can contact Brent Kendall for their home addresses to send them an actual letter! If you’d like to drop your note off in the Tithe Box or Connections Booth at your church location, we’ll be sure to get it to your pastor. Please don’t let this opportunity go by without saying, “Thank you” to the amazing pastors of our church!

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  25. Tested by

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    Tested A Word from Pastor Josh Whintney of The Rock Church in Utah

    “His feet were hurt with fetters; his neck was put in a collar of iron; until what he had said came to pass, the word of the Lord tested him.” — Psalm 105:18-19

    In Genesis 37, the seventeen-year-old Joseph had a dream in which the sun, moon, and eleven stars all bowed down to him. His eleven brothers correctly interpreted that dream to mean that they would one day bow down to Joseph. That only increased their jealousy of him. Their hatred was rooted in their father’s favoritism. It prevented them from speaking nicely to Joseph.

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    The brothers contemplated murdering Joseph but eventually sold him as a slave. This verse in Psalm 105:18 provides an additional insight to Genesis. It tells us that Joseph’s feet and neck were hurt by his slave chains!

    The story gets worse. Joseph was bought by an Egyptian, Potiphar, and found temporary success working for him. That is until Potiphar’s wife falsely accused Joseph of rape! Joseph then rotted in jail for a couple of years. We all know the “happily ever after” to his story. Eventually, he got released and exalted to the second highest position in Egypt.

    I was struck by this verse. Joseph was sold as a slave and sat in prison with his feet and neck chained for years. Yet, God had promised Joseph in a dream that people would bow down to him. Until that came to pass, God tested him.

    Do you feel tested by life? I don’t know about you, but challenges with work, health, money, family, and friends can really feel like a very hard and heavy test. This verse strengthened me because Joseph was a young man who was tested by God. That wasn’t just random suffering. God loved Joseph and had a plan to test him and ultimately use him!

    Josh

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  26. Playground Lesson by

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    Playground Lessons A Word by Pastor Bryan Edwards of The Rock Church in Salt Lake City Utah

    “Cast all your anxieties on Him, for He cares about you.” — 1 Peter 5:7

    Over the years, I have found myself coming back to this tremendous truth almost daily. I am a very anxious person. Sometimes, it can overtake my brain in a paralyzing way. The promise in this verse has always helped remind me that I am not alone. It helps me see that God cares about my problems. He isn’t surprised that I could be burdened.

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    God knows all of our needs (big or small), and promises to take care of every one of them. Maybe you are like me, you know this verse to be true, yet you still struggle to believe it? It’s moments like these that I believe we need to emulate the meek heart of a child.

    Consider with me for a moment a lesson we can learn from the playground. Your child is playing and then falls down and gets hurt. The fall wasn’t that bad. But, then they look down and see the blood running down their leg. At that moment, the sight of blood completely consumes them. (Much like anxiety, am I right?) What’s the first word that comes out of your child’s mouth? “MOMMYYY!!!! DADDDYYYY!!” They respond the only way they know how. They cry out for the provision and comfort of their mom or dad.

    Christian, when fear and anxiety start to swell up in your brain, Jesus tells us to respond the same way a child does when he gets hurt. You are to run to your Good Father.

    In Matthew, Jesus says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Combine that with 1 Peter 5:7. We don’t just come to Him with our burdens and anxieties, but we are to actually hand them over to Him. Throw them upon Jesus (because He CARES for you). Just as a child trusts in the provision of his earthly parents, so we as Christians should so much more trust that our Father in Heaven will do the same.

    Are you battling anxiety today, friend? Consider the child on the playground — cry out to your Good Father in heaven. Run to Him, and He will comfort you.

    “Cast all your anxieties on Him, for He cares about you.”

    Bryan

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  27. Family by

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    Family, A Word from Pastor Tony D'Amico

    Over the past few weeks, I’ve been looking through many of the photos that my wife has taken since we started coming to The Rock Church back in 2004. We were putting a slide show together for the final service in Salt Lake City and since Shannon loves to document everything with her camera, it was huge blessing to look at it all.

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    We had the chance to “see” all of the amazing things that God has done through the people (our family, really) at The Rock. From baptisms to conferences, from all-church campouts to after-church hangouts, from mission trips to Small Group meetings, from salvations to completely changed lives and saved marriages, Jesus has done a tremendous work in it all!

    Processing all of that has been a very emotional experience. I’ve thought about how all those people are like a family. They truly have loved one another.

    Paul wrote in Romans 12:10-13, “Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality”.

    The body of believer we have at The Rock Church never ceases to amaze me. Recently, one of our deacons from the Salt Lake location, was involved in a pretty bad accident. I was amazed to see the love everyone showed their family. People came together to “outdo” one another by giving meals, donating money, praying together, and giving of their time to help out. That verse came to life. It wasn’t just words on paper.

    When you think about the people that you commune with at church, my prayer is that you take to heart what Paul wrote to the Romans. Truly love one another. When we do that, the love will over flow into all aspects of our lives.

    Love you all,

    Tony

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  28. Uncertain by

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    Uncertain A Word by Pastor Austin Fredrickson

    There will be times in life when you know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, what you are supposed to be doing with your life. There will also be times when you have no idea where God might be leading you. Even though you pray, read your Bible, and get counsel, you don’t feel certain about your next step. Here is the key to understanding the uncertain situations in your life: Sometimes God will ask us for faith when we are demanding clarity. We tend to look at situations in our lives and say, “God, show me what to do.” or “Just give me a sign.” At these moments, when we don’t hear from God, I believe He might be telling us to exercise our faith.

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    I am struck by God’s call on Abraham. When Abraham was 75 years old God told him simply that he was to leave his land and his family. God said He would bless him and make him into a great nation. It seems like a pretty simple request (with little clarity) as to what exactly the future would hold. What we don’t see in Scripture is Abraham questioning God or asking for more information. He simply obeyed in faith. We see the same thing later on in Abraham’s life. Many years after God had given him the child of His promise, He asked Abraham to sacrifice his beloved son. Abraham did not question God. He obeyed until God stopped him and spared his son.
     
    When I think about that call on Abraham’s life I think about my own son. Almost every time I ask him to do something he says, “Why?”. Part of that is because he is three years old. But, it’s also because he has his own plans and his own idea of what he wants to be doing. He doesn’t like me to disrupt his little plans. When I see my son constantly do this, over and over, it starts to frustrate me! I think “Why won’t you just trust me and know I have good intentions for you?” Maybe this is how God sees us when He asks us to make a move in faith and we question His every move?
     
    Lately, life has been uncertain for my wife and me. We have had lots of questions about what is next for us. We have been resisting the urge to demand that God should give us clarity in the midst of this season. Instead, we have been asking for greater faith to keep walking (even though the road is not totally clear). In these times, God’s sovereignty gives me great hope.
     
    “If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?” — Romans 8:31-32
     
    For the last two and a half years, I have not only served as a pastor of The Rock Church, but I have also been working full-time for a great company about 45 minutes from home. To be totally honest, for the last six months or so, I have prayed everyday that God would give me the strength to continue with the load that He had given me. I could not carry it on my own. Well, God in His grace, has been answering my family’s prayers. With the closing of our Salt Lake City location, we are feeling the opportunity for healthy change in our lives. We still don’t totally know what that looks like, but our hearts have been deeply encouraged by God’s provision in the midst of uncertainty.
     
    So, for now, with the direction of the Holy Spirit (and the blessing of the other Rock pastors), I am stepping down as a pastor at The Rock Church. When we start the new Saturday Night Service in Draper, my wife and I are all in. We have been so encouraged by our family at The Rock. We feel we have been spoiled with so many great people in our lives. We are resolved to continue to run along side you in Draper until God says, “Go”. Where He will ultimately lead us is uncertain. But, we know when we arrive, it will be in faith.
     
    In His Wonderful Name,

    Austin

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  29. New Draper Service on Saturday Nights by

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    New Service at The Rock Church in Draper on Saturday Nights

    We are VERY excited to announce the third service at our Draper location!

    Saturday Nights at 6:00 p.m.

    Our Kickoff Service will be October 1, 2016! We’ll be ready to welcome you with all of our church ministries and, of course, our excellent (and fun) Creator’s Kids classes.

    This Saturday Night Service is a great opportunity for you to take advantage of. Invite your friends, neighbors, and co-workers (who might not want to come to church on a Sunday morning)!

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  30. Witness by

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    Witness

    “You are my witnesses,” declares the Lord, “and my servants whom I have chosen, so that you may know and believe Me and understand that I am He. Before me no god was formed, nor will there be one after me.” – Isaiah 43:10

    This verse has been a reminder to me about how close God wants us to be to Him. We live in Christian culture that knows all ABOUT God. There are books upon books dedicated to teaching folks about His character, His Spirit, His Sovereignty, His Power. I have even seen books dedicated to His humor. Though all of these things are good, this verse tell us that God has set us apart to KNOW Him and UNDERSTAND Him, to be His WITNESS.

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    For us to truly know God, for us to really understand Him, we need to spend time with Him. We need talk with Him, pour out our hearts to Him, and listen for Him. For us to be accurate “witnesses” of God, we need to have seen Him work in our own lives. A witness is defined as “a person who has knowledge of an event or change from PERSONAL observation”.

    I often encourage people to read books about God. However, I’ve rarely met a person who is more changed than when they have spent quality time with their Creator (in prayer, worship and reflection of His Word).

    God wants us to know Him beyond the encounters of our friends and neighbors. God desires us to know Him past our studies of other people’s experiences. He wants you to know Him yourself, intimately, one on one.

    God’s heart for you is not just to amaze you by seeing and hearing the stories of others. He wants to give you a story all your own. He has set you apart to know Him. This week, dig into your Bible and ask your God to reveal Himself to YOU.

    Have great week,

    Steele

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  31. “You Asked For It” series by

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    You Asked for It series

    We all have questions.

    What does God say about sexuality and gender issues? If God is good, why is there so much suffering in the world? Who would God vote for as President? Sometimes, it’s hard to find the answers we need. In our upcoming 15-week series, You Asked For It, you’ll have a chance to discover answers to the questions you’ve been asking.

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    Join us (starting September 4-6) as we tackle the topics that are really on your mind and in your life.

    Here is a list of topics that will be covered.

    • ATHEISM: What is it and how can I speak to the subject?
    • BIBLE CONTRADICTIONS: How can I speak on this subject?
    • GOD’S WILL: How do I find God’s will for me?
    • HEAR GOD: How do I know when God is speaking?
    • POLITICS: What should we do about politics?
    • FORGIVING OTHERS: How do I forgive others?
    • MARRIAGE: How do I make my marriage better?
    • PARENTING: How can I be a better parent?
    • TOLERANCE: What it really is and how can I be tolerant in a Biblical way?
    • DEPRESSION: How does God want me to deal with depression?
    • HEAVEN: What happens when I die (Heaven)?
    • RELIGIOUS EXTREMISM: Terrorism, our response, & threat to US peace.
    • SEXUAL IDENTITY: Marriage, Trans-gender, LGBT, etc…
    • STRESS & ANXIETY: How do I handle stress and anxiety?
    • ISRAEL: Role in the world, Christian responsibility.
    • CHURCH IN POLITICS: Separation of church and state, legal boundaries.

    Don’t forget to invite a friend!

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  32. Dry Bones by

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    Dry Bones

    “O Sovereign Lord,” I replied, “you alone know the answer to that.” — Ezekiel 37:3b

    This is the prophet’s response to a question God had just asked him. The Lord had led the prophet Ezekiel to a valley filled with dry bones. After looking at the bones, God asked Ezekiel, “Can these bones become living people again?”

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    I love Ezekiel’s response. This verse was very encouraging to me in a recent quiet time. Sometimes, in my own life, or with friends and family, or situations in the church, it is easy to get discouraged. What will happen with this or that person or circumstance? But, I was really encouraged by Ezekiel’s heart. It is almost like he was saying, “That is a tough question, God. What do you say?”

    After Ezekiel’s question, God told Ezekiel to speak, to prophecy to the dead, dry bones. God did an amazing miracle after Ezekiel spoke in faith. The bones were covered with flesh, muscle, and skin. Then breath was given to the bodies and they came back to life. Imagine that scene. It is crazy to think about a valley of dead bones being transformed into an army of people. (No doubt this will be a popular movie in the Heaven seven-plex one day).

    God then explained the meaning of that miracle. That mighty army was a demonstration of how God was going to bring the spiritually dead nation of Israel back to life. The application for us from this story is clear. When we see a situation that is discouraging or overwhelming, we need to fix our eyes on God. What do you say, God? God then commands us to speak His truth into the situation! Keep your eyes fixed on God, speak His word and see what He does.

    Speak it to yourself, your family, your friends, and the Church. See what God does. “You alone know the answer to that, God!”

    Fixing my eyes,

    Josh

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  33. Salt Lake Location Transition by

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    Salt Lake Location

    You may have heard the difficult (yet exciting) news that after 13 years at our Salt Lake location, we are closing this chapter of our Rock Church Ministry. Saturday, September 10 (7:00 p.m.) will be our last church service in the Red Warehouse (please join us for a celebration, by the way!). The good news is, we are excited to have most of these wonderful people join us at our Draper location and start a brand new Third Service on Saturday nights starting October 1!

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    Needless to say, there has been much prayer, counsel and tears… which has ultimately led to much excitement about this huge move. Change is never easy, but we honestly believe that God is leading us into a new, much better position of strength as a church. Through all of this, we have learned some things about church planting and specifically about putting people in a position job-wise that fits their strengths. We will be able to do this better now. Please keep all those involved in this transition in prayer and believe with us that God is going to get the ultimate victory.

    We would also encourage you to listen to Steele Croswhite’s message in which he explains in more detail the story of how and why we came to this decision.

    Grace, Peace, Faith, Love message

    Excited in faith,

    The Pastors of The Rock Church

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  34. Forgiveness by

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    Forgiveness

    “Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: ‘It is mine to avenge; I will repay,’ says the Lord.”— Romans 12:19 (NIV)

    Forgiveness is an act of the will. I recently talked to a person at church who told me, “I don’t feel like forgiving my friend.” She was obviously emotional and hurting and her pain was very real. After listening to her story and empathizing with her situation, I reminded her that forgiveness was not an option. In fact, we are commanded to forgive: “Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” — Colossians 3:13 (NIV).

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    Corrie Ten Boom was a Dutch woman who was sent to a concentration camp in 1944 (for helping Jews escape from Holland). In exercising forgiveness toward a German who had been a former prison guard over her, Corrie shared these profound words: “But forgiveness is not an emotion—I knew that too. Forgiveness is an act of the will, and it can function regardless of the temperature of the heart.”

    A key to embracing our forgiveness is to understand and accept God’s payment against us and against others for sin. He has paid for our sins with the precious blood of his Son. Which means He alone is Judge…and He has not granted us the power of attorney! “Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody.” Paul taught the Romans (12:17). Vengeance is to inflict injury in return for an insult. How many vigilante movies (like Rambo) show just that? But, vengeance is the Lord’s, not yours. We are not the instruments of God’s vengeance. We don’t have the right to retaliate.

    Finally, we need to keep in mind that God will act to right all wrongs. He doesn’t say, “Just let it go.” All of Creation will rejoice when He comes to judge the earth. “He will judge the world in righteousness and the peoples with equity.” — Psalm 98:9 (NIV). He is big enough to do it. He will repay.

    Let’s commit ourselves to forgive those who have sinned against us. You will be so glad you did.

    Resting in forgiveness,

    Bill

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  35. Heavenly Minded by

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    Heavenly Minded

    The wickedness of this world has been totally devastating me lately. I have been sorrowful and I have even cried. If you allow yourself to empathize with the families who have lost loved ones because of senseless acts of violence, you will indeed feel a burden that is too great to bear. Young children whose dads will not return home from duty, mothers whose children will never walk through the door again, friends and co-workers killed by bloodthirsty, pathetic men. It is an outrage and it should stop!

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    But, maybe it won’t. Maybe it will. What if it doesn’t? There is no true hope based on some future optimistic outcome whether from political policy, safety regulations or even winning a war. The world grasps at straws in their grief. One of the beautiful things about Christ is that He has given us something more than straw to hold onto.

    The only true hope that I have found for my devastated heart is this: Jesus is the author of justice and He is coming back to make things right. “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” — Revelation 21:4

    Not only was this a blanket statement that He will wipe away tears, it is a statement of the extent of His forthcoming comfort. He will wipe away EVERY tear. He sees ALL the pain, ALL the hurt, and ALL the injustice. And He will make ALL things right.

    I have heard it said that people can be too heavenly minded to do any earthly good. I would like to suggest that in times like these, I would have no hope apart from anticipating a heavenly ending. In your grief and wondering what to make of all of the pride, hate, and malice in the world, know this — King Jesus will make it right!

    Until then, He will be using you and me to bring hope where there was none, light where there was only darkness and joy in the midst of distress.

    United in Him,

    Austin

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  36. Loneliness by

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    Loneliness

    “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” — Matthew 11:28

    Loneliness is a very difficult thing.

    Whether we are single, married, young or old, loneliness is something we all experience or have experienced (to some degree). I believe loneliness is much more than just a mental or emotional issue. I believe the Bible tells us it’s a spiritual issue, also.

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    Back in the Garden, Adam wasn’t lonely. He was in communion with God. Then, God went above and beyond to make sure Adam wouldn’t be lonely and created for him a helper — Eve. But, on that day when Adam first sinned, his life changed. He experienced loneliness for the first time, in a spiritual sense; he was cut off from God. For the first time, Adam experienced the dark cloud in his heart of being spiritually alone and feeling far from God.

    Christian, have you ever felt lonely, isolated, or forgotten by God? Maybe from the effects of sin or from an unfortunate situation? Maybe things aren’t even that bad, yet you still just feel sort of…. empty? Lately, I’ve been wrestling with feelings of loneliness more than ever before. (Yes, even as a pastor, there are days that I feel quite alone!)

    There are some days when a few good friends and some fresh air don’t really cut it. There are times where I’m left feeling like I still need something more. Loneliness is a true reminder of how deeply we need a Savior.

    Like Adam, we are fallen, fearful, and forgotten. But, in the Second Adam (Jesus), we get reconciliation, relationship and relief. We have been redeemed and we can cry out for relief to the One who can perfectly sympathize with us in our weakness and loneliness. By belonging to Jesus, we have been promised something that’s far better than anything this broken world can offer us. We have the unshakable joy of being with God forever. He has promised to return for us. Jesus has promised to bring heaven with Him and He will wipe away every tear from our eyes. There will be no more sorrow, pain, or loneliness anymore.

    So, when our loneliness screams “HELP” and isolates us to feeling like we’ve been “forgotten”, where can we go? We need to run to Jesus because He says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Christian, you have not been forgotten.

    Not alone,

    Bryan

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  37. Words VS. Heart by

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    Words VS Heart

    “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.” — Psalm 19:14 (ESV)

    Lately, I have been thinking about the relationship between our words and/or our actions in relation to the condition of our heart. It is somewhat easy to mask the true condition of our heart with our words. Things are easier said, than truly believed. But, we can only pay lip service for so long before the true condition of our heart is exposed. I really like what the Psalmist is saying here because he is not just talking about his heart, but his words, too.

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    “The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” – Luke 6:45 (ESV)

    So, the question is, do our mouths line up with our hearts?

    These verses are ones that we should have on our lips and in our hearts daily. The words we speak and the meditations of our hearts should be pleasing to God. They need to be one in the same. The words we speak are external and people can judge us by them, but the heart is internal. Only God can judge that. We need to give our hearts to God and be willing to let Him mold us into the person He wants us to be. Then, our words will line up with what is coming out of our hearts.

    Tony

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  38. Good Works by

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    Good Works

    I was cleaning out the basement a few weeks ago and found an old journal of mine. After reading a few pages, it would seem that all I ever did back in 2007 was think about Jesus, talk about Jesus, read about Jesus and write about Jesus. A lot was going on in my life back then for sure: I had just married Ashley, I was a first year apprentice electrician, I was cranking through the Bible and deciding where I stood on heavy theological positions. I was also writing down prayers, leading people to Christ, and playing in one of the worship bands at The Rock.

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    One thing that really stuck out to me in that old journal was a prayer that I had written down for a co-worker named Joe. I prayed that God would save his marriage and reveal Himself to Joe and that he would become a Christian. I didn’t know Joe that well and I don’t even remember praying for him. It took me by surprise to see how full of faith I was back then! I hate to say it, but I don’t pray for all of my co-workers like that anymore. That journal kind of knocked me back on my heels. It made me feel ashamed that I’m not doing as many things for the Lord as I used to.

    My mind started spinning with sobering thoughts. “Do I even remember the last time I led someone to Christ?” or “When was the last time one of the guys I’ve led to Christ stuck around?” I felt poured out and used up by God. I felt like He must be through with me and that the days of Him using me to do good things for Him were long gone.

    Have you ever been in that place? Have you ever felt like God was done using you? Like your “Christian glory days” were over? Christian, I just want to encourage with what God’s Word really says about our labor for Him and His church (not what you might be believing).

    Ephesians 2:10 says, “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” Do you believe this? Do you walk like you’re the pencil line on a big page of “dot to dot”, looking for the next good thing that God has prepared for you to do for Him, His kingdom or His church? You should.

    I can sure grow in this — we all can. We shouldn’t do it thinking we’ll earn favor with God so that He’ll accept us (that’s not what that verse says). Jesus already took care of that. We should do it because we are His workmanship and we were created in Christ for the good works He has prepared for us to do.

    Looking for the next good thing,

    Billy

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  39. Revealed by

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    revealed

    “For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open.” — Luke 8:16 -17

    I’d like to tell you a story. Although it took place a few years ago, it really encouraged my family’s faith and I believe that glorifies the Lord.

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    We had just bought a new camera (I had broken our old one after excitedly jumping up in the air as our 16 year old Stephen had gotten an interception during a high school football game). That football play cost me $200! About a month later, unexplainably (except that I had four boys in my home), our new camera suddenly disappeared. That was pretty discouraging (not just because we had lost the camera), but Christmas season was upon us and we had no good way to record the special moments that would come (camera phones were not what they are today)!

    We scoured our home from top to bottom looking for the misplaced memory maker. A lot of mornings I woke up thinking about where the camera could be. Weeks went by and we’d almost given up hope when God reminded me, “You know, you can trust me by asking me to help you.”

    I gathered our family together after dinner one night. We circled up and I shared some verses I’d been reading that week in Daniel which said, “Daniel replied, ‘No wise man, enchanter, magician or diviner can explain to the king the mystery he has asked about, but there is a God in heaven who reveals mysteries.’” — Daniel 2:27-28

    We prayed and I asked God to help us specifically find the camera “within the next 15 minutes”.

    To make a long story short, we all spread out to designated areas, and EXACTLY 15 minutes later, (as I pulled one of many boxes out of our cold storage and lifted out some papers) — there it was! My son Jonathan yelled “We found it!” We all gathered again and thanked God for His kindness. He is indeed the revealer of mysteries. Thank you, Lord.

    Lesson learned? Prayer works. Try it.

    Bill

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  40. May Cause Death by

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    warning

    Last week, a number of our pastors traveled to the great state of Iowa for our annual Pastor’s Conference. One of the conference speakers spoke on the unbelievable danger that pornography presents to our society. It impacts everyone: men, women, spouses, parents, and children.

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    Obviously, pornography is a threat to having a pure thought life. I think of Jesus’ words, “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” — Matthew 5:27-28

    The conference speaker also said that viewing pornography could lead to the greater temptation to have an actual physical or emotional affair with another person. That reminded me of those sobering verses, “But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.” — James 1:14-15

    Sin will ultimately (and always) lead to death. Church, we can never forget that truth when we are tempted to sin with pornography (or other sins). A couple days before hearing that teaching, I read “So you will be delivered from the forbidden woman, from the adulteress with her smooth words, who forsakes the companion of her youth and forgets the covenant of her God; for her house sinks down to death, and her paths to the departed; none who go to her come back, nor do they regain the paths of life.” — Proverbs 2:16-19

    Church, sin is always a life and death choice. May God give us the grace to honor Him with our choices related to pornography (and other sins) and may He protect us from choices that may cause death!

    Josh

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  41. Turning Back by

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    Turning Back

    “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.” Acts 3:19 (NIV)

    I was recently reminded of one of my favorite fishing trips of all times. I went with a good friend of mine to a lake in Canada called Lake of the Woods. Scott and I had spent months planning and preparing. During our trip we caught so many Walleye and Northern Pike that we were literally laughing out loud. I also remember fishing at about 2:00 a.m. next to a huge rock that jutted straight up out of the water about forty feet. As we fished on that clear starlit night, we witnessed the overwhelming beauty of Aurora Borealis – the Northern Lights. I’m not sure how long we stared, silently spellbound. It was a majestic sight – and a fishing trip of a lifetime!

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    What was equally memorable was our road trip getting to our camping spot to begin with. We left late at night, hoping to fish at first light. I was driving and Scott fell asleep. At one point near International Falls, Minnesota, I was supposed to turn west, but I accidentally turned east. I drove for over two hours in the wrong direction! I was classically deceived. It wasn’t until the rising sun (note to self — the sun rises in the EAST!) started blinding me that I realized my mistake. I literally thanked God for the sun, told Scott I was sorry, and turned around (eventually making it to our glorious fishing destination).

    I learned a good lesson in all this: It is easy to be deceived — to think I am right (but really I am wrong).

    In life, we will all take wrong turns at times. So, what do we do when the Son (not sun) shines into our heart and exposes our folly? There is only one right choice – humble ourselves, acknowledge our mistakes and thank Jesus (the Son), for illuminating sin in our lives. Ultimately, we simply need to turn around, or repent, and let Jesus take over control of our life.

    Once you turn back to God, you will be on your way to some magnificent fishing (heaven) and a chance to behold the glory of God (Aurora Borealis)!

    Praying the light of Jesus shines brightly into your heart today,

    Bill

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  42. O Death, Where is Your Sting? by

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    O Death, Where is Your Sting?

    One of the things that really gripes me about death is that it seems so final. We allow our minds to grasp the concept of that finality — “I will never see this person again.” or “No more holiday gatherings, no more meals, no more family reunions, no more jokes.” Death sucks. It separates us from the ones who we love and enjoy.

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    This, however, is where the beauty of the Gospel breaks through that dark thinking. For those of us who are in Christ, death is not final. Death is a bridge to the dwelling place of our Lord. Death seems final and unless your name is Lazarus, there is no coming back. But, we are a people with hope! Jesus Christ literally defeated death in His death and resurrection.

    “Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” – 1 Corinthians 15:54b-55

    What does this mean for us? A right understanding of death should compel us. It should compel us to live our lives with an end goal. It should compel us to live for the long-term, to share the Gospel, to look past the temporary hardships of this life and to see our tangible hope in Jesus’ work on the cross.

    Do you have a right understanding of death? When you look at death, do you see victory? You should.

    In Christ,

    Austin

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  43. Change by

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    Change, A Word by Pastor Bryan Edwards

    “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.” Psalm 51:10

    I’m not a big fan of change. Big or small, it always seems to bring out some sort of fuss from me. I have a hard time with simple transitions that most people wouldn’t even consider being problematic. From buying a car to renewing a magazine subscription, my mind starts racing just thinking about it. That’s just the way I am wired. But, change is coming (whether I am ready for it or not).

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    I say that because the Christian’s life is full of change!

    Ten years ago, God made the biggest change in my life — the day that He saved me. At that moment I was changed for eternity. That same change happened in you, Christian. We were changed from children of wrath to children of God. We went from spiritual death to spiritual life. We were changed from fruitless to fruitful, abandoned to adopted, forsaken to forgiven.

    That’s not quite the change I’m talking about, however. The Bible also talks about the sanctification of the Believer, which is the ongoing work of God in our lives. He is continually changing us to be less like our old self, and more like Christ. You see, God didn’t just save us and then leave us hanging until He comes back. No, sanctification means that the more we grow in our faith from day to day, it’s actually God who’s at work in us.

    This means that as we walk out into the city and meet the needs of other people, God is changing our hearts. As we turn from temptation and flee from sin, God is changing our desires. As we pray for the widows, orphans, and the lost, God is changing our affections.

    Our God is a God who will never change, yet He is always changing us! Whether we wrestle with that change, or we embrace it with open arms, in every way it is for our good. Like I mentioned earlier, I’m not a big fan of change. But, when it comes to God changing me, I’ve never been more grateful! Be encouraged — He is never finished with us.

    My friend, take a moment today to thank God for all the good He has done in your life. Pray for a heart like the Psalmist David — one who’s anticipating God to continue to change you!

    Forever changed,

    Bryan

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  44. Kindness by

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    Kindness

    “Your kindness will reward you, but your cruelty will destroy you.” Proverbs 11:17

    What a simple but impactful verse to obey. Being kind will reward you; being cruel will destroy you. This can apply to your thoughts, your actions, and your words.

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    In your thoughts, are you thinking the best about people or are you creating elaborate ideas about how bad that person is? If so, that will starts to eat at you, destroying you on the inside. How about in your actions? Are you kind in how you interact with people? Do you do things that bring joy to those around you? What about with your words? Do you say things that build people up or do you tear people down?

    When we start to filter what we do throughout the day (using a verse like this as the filter), it’s easy to see how being kind can bring life, but cruelty will destroy.

    This week, I challenge you to seek out ways to be kind to people! Send an encouraging email, text message or pick up the phone and actually give someone an encouraging call. Buy the drink for the person behind you in line at Starbucks. Even doing simple things like being nice to the person taking your lunch order is an act of kindness. Smile at someone serving you, ask how they are doing, and thank them for helping you!

    There are so many ways you can extend kindness this week.

    Tony

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  45. Pray by

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    Pray

    Most of us would say we have room to grow in the area of prayer. Ask any Christian (who has a great relationship with God) if they pray much. I guarantee you they’ll tell you that they do. That’s because there’s no other way for us to communicate with God except through prayer. Yet, for some reason, so many of us fall terribly short in our prayer lives.

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    As Christians, we know we need to pray. Romans 12:12 tells us to be constant in prayer. First Thessalonians 5:17 tells us to pray without ceasing. Basically, praying to our God should be something we do without necessarily thinking about all of the time. A thought pops into our heads (someone in need, something worrying us, something we’re encouraged by), we should be acknowledging that thought before the Lord. “Thanks that I didn’t trip over that hose, God!” or “Someone I know is hurting right now, Lord. I pray you would give him or her grace and a boost of encouragement right now.” It doesn’t have to be big and lengthy — just little prayers to God mixed into our own thoughts.

    We should also pray intentional prayers of thanksgiving, intercession, and supplication. In the New Testament, we read about how Jesus prayed those prayers both in public and in private. He prayed them a lot. We read about how God did amazing things with people when they were prayed for. Peter being freed from prison is a perfect example. We also read about how Paul asked for prayer from the saints (he even said that blessings were being granted to him because other believers were praying for him).

    What is it that keeps us from praying as much as we know we should? Is it a lack of belief? Is it the idea that we’ve prayed for things before but haven’t received the answer we wanted so we don’t expect much to come of it? Is it that we have the mindset that “God is going to work out His will anyway, so what is my prayer really doing?” I know I’ve felt that way more that I should.

    We need to remember that God wants us to pray to him — He loves it! There is a mystery to prayer that we’ll never understand in this life. But, we would do well to remember that “the prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.” We are the righteous ones.

    We can’t be everywhere for everyone at all times. But, our all-powerful God can and the most powerful thing we can do for others (and ourselves) is to ask God to be a part of whatever is going on in our lives.

    Looking forward to our next prayer meeting,

    Billy

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  46. Wrought With God by

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    Wrought With God

    I’m getting more and more excited (and honestly a little anxious) as I think about our upcoming short-term mission trip to Stockholm, Sweden (May 26 – June 5). Our team of seven people is certainly comprised of some very capable people and I’m convinced the Lord has been leading us from the start. Yet, the enormity of just seven of us flying half way across the world to share Jesus in a foreign land is somewhat terrifying. I think I’m beginning to realize the only sensible position for us is to be wrought with God.

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    The Stockholm region has over 2.2 million people and routinely offers permanent residency to Syrian refugees (there are over 30,000 refugees there now). Almost eight out of ten Swedes are either “not religious” or “convinced atheists”; they also tend to be introverted and keep to themselves. This poses a very interesting conundrum when thousands of people are looking for help in their city.

    We believe this also poses a tremendous Gospel opportunity as we partner with a young woman and her church (they’re associated with Great Commission Churches). They love Jesus and want to make Him known. They are very excited to have us come and be used by God to influence their city for Christ.

    I was recently yearning (somewhat desperately) for some encouragement from God’s Word to share with those going on this short-term mission trip. I wanted to build our confidence! It was then that I came across the phrase “wrought with God”. In the Amplified translation, John 3:21 says, “But he who practices truth [who does what is right] comes out into the Light; so that his works may be plainly shown to be what they are–wrought with God [divinely prompted, done with God’s help, in dependence upon Him].”

    After doing more study on this verse, I really began to appreciate the description provided for what “wrought with God” means. It’s this simple — God will help us and the only sensible thing we can do is walk in faith and be completely dependent upon Him.

    Wrought with God,

    Mac

    Un Mensaje de los pastores de The Rock Church en Español

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  47. Know by

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    Parents — your children are SO BLESSED TO HAVE YOU! They are so blessed!

    I went on a walk to stretch my legs and breathe some fresh air. It just so happened that it was also the time when many kids were getting off the bus after school. The tree-lined street was filled with children running to their respective homes.

    This made me think of my kids. I thought about how quickly the time really has flown since they were born. The day is fast approaching when they will walk by themselves (without me or my wife next to them). That thought was both sad and encouraging to me. It was sad because they grow too fast but it was also encouraging because I know they are being equipped and loved every day as they grow.

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    I thought of how many of the children I saw were possibly going home to less than ideal home situations. Perhaps some of their homes were filled with neglect or lots of yelling or worse. To be fair, it is equally true that many of those kids may have had stable home environments.

    But, here’s what I know for certain — I know my home.

    In His grace, God has seen fit to entrust Kim and me with three precious lives. What an incredible responsibility to be a parent. What an incredible privilege. Each day I feel like I am reminded anew how hard, amazing, and wonderful it is to hear the word “Dad.” Because of this, I do not take my joy or responsibility of parenting lightly.

    So, I KNOW my home.

    • I know what my kiddos are hearing from my wife and me.
    • I know what my kiddos are hearing from each other.
    • I know what they are watching and playing and whom they are playing with.
    • I know they hear ALL THE TIME the words: “I love you, I love you, I love you!”
    • I know they hear ALL THE TIME the word: “NO”.
    • I know they are learning how to laugh and play and work.
    • I know they are learning how to love by our love for them.
    • I know they are learning how to trust and rest.
    • I know they are learning about Jesus and His Word, His love, and His salvation.
    • I know they are learning about family.
    • I know they are learning about responsibility.
    • I know they are learning about the world around them and are learning truth about this world.
    • I know they are learning about what’s important and what’s not so important.
    • I know they are learning how to pray and sing and what faith is.
    • I know they are learning how to love their neighbor.

    What a blessing to KNOW your own home.

    Each day, we have precious hours to make our homes havens for these little people. Our houses become forts and playgrounds — they also become our “churches” and “schools” and “hospitals” for them. What an amazing privilege to know your home.

    Every time you say “yes” to wrestling or “no” to a movie…. you are giving them so much. Every time you squeeze your little baby or wake up in the middle of the night for “the late night feeding” you are teaching them trust. Every time you have “coffee at my house so the kids can nap” with your friends, you are showing them you care. Every time you sit down for dinner as a family, every time you celebrate a birthday, every time you sign them up for soccer, every time you take them to church, every time you organize a “play date”…. you are blessing your kiddos beyond measure.

    For the better part of 18 years (at least), you are providing not just a house, but also a home for your children. What an awesome time to fill your home with good things… to fill your kids with good things. It is true that I don’t know what is happening in the lives of “all the other kids” around me or what is in their homes. But I DO know what is happening with my kids and I know what is happening in my home.

    Today, I want you to tell your kids (no matter how old or young they are)…. “YOU ARE SO BLESSED TO HAVE ME AS YOUR DAD/MOM.” Almost every day I tell my kids, “God must have really loved me to give you to me, and He must really love you to give me to you!”

    Your kids are so blessed to have you! They are SO BLESSED! You guys are heroes!

    I am praying for you all the time, parents. You are involved with the greatest work of your life.

    With you,

    Steele

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  48. Blessed by

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    blessed

    “Blessed be the name of The Lord now and forever.” Psalm 113:12

    I recently read this verse in my quiet time and one word stuck out to me more than the others; the word was “now”.

    It is easy to “Bless the name of the Lord” when things are going well. But, the word “now” implies the moment we’re in. Whatever this moment holds in your life, whatever situation “now” finds you in, you need to bless the name of the Lord. Read more →

    If you find yourself in a season of prosperity, Bless Him! Uncertainty? Bless Him! Hardship? Bless Him! Change? Bless Him! God is worthy of our worship in all seasons of our lives — He is to be blessed “now and forever”.

    I also love how Psalm 113 ends. It gives a picture of the heart of God. In verses 7 and 8 it says, “He lifts the poor from the dust and the needy from the garbage dump. He sets them among princes, even the princes of His own people.”

    Whatever season you are in, Bless the Lord! No matter what your circumstances are, good or bad, God is worthy and His heart for you and His plans for you are good!

    Today, let us remember to “Bless the name of the Lord”.

    Feeling blessed,

    Steele

    Un Mensaje de los pastores de The Rock Church en Español

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  49. National Day of Prayer by

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    National Day of Prayer

    I would like to invite you and your family to join us for a National Day of Prayer (NDP) Evening of Prayer and Worship at The Rock Church Draper location (11650 S 700 E, Draper, UT 84020), THIS Thursday, May 5 (7:00 to 8:00 p.m.).

    We’ll have a powerful time praying and worshiping Jesus (led by one of our own Rock Church Worship Teams — Andy Browning’s band). What a blessing to everyone who attends!

    Please plan on coming — I love you and am praying for you all!

    See you Thursday night!

    United,

    Bill

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  50. May Prayer List by

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    May Prayer List

    “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” –Romans 12:12

    We are rejoicing in hope. May we also be patient in tribulation, and constant in prayer. God wants to hear from His people! Pray with us this May for the future of The Rock, and for us to realize our goal of winning to Christ one life at a time, and one world in our lifetime.

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  51. A Raspberry Parable by

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    Raspberry Parable

    “Then the disciples came and said to him, ‘Why do you speak to them in parables?’” Matthew 13:10

    John and Steve had been roommates in college. After graduation they moved to different parts of the country. They stayed in touch mainly through Facebook, but they hadn’t seen each other in years. Finally, Steve had a chance to visit John on a business trip. They enjoyed catching up over dinner and after the meal, John showed Steve around his new home, including his yard. John had worked hard during his first few years in his new house and he had planted a number of trees and plants.

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    When they walked past a small raspberry patch, John started to explain to Steve how the raspberries had struggled after being transplanted from out-of-state but now they were starting to thrive in their new location. While John was talking, Steve absentmindedly bent down and started to pull some of the young raspberry canes out of the ground (the ones that were sprouting up between the fully-grown, mature canes).

    When John noticed what Steve was doing, he cried out, “What are you doing, Steve?! Please stop that, my friend!”

    Steve looked up with surprise. “Why are you so upset, John? It is just a blob of plant matter, not a real raspberry yet.”

    “What are you talking about, Steve? That is a young raspberry plant you just pulled out of the ground!”

    “Don’t be ridiculous, John. Look how tiny these leaves are. This blob of plant matter isn’t even an inch tall yet.”

    “Please stop, my friend.”

    “Rescue those who are being taken away to death; hold back those who are stumbling to the slaughter. If you say, “Behold, we did not know this,” does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who keeps watch over your soul know it, and will he not repay man according to his work?” Proverbs 24:11-12

    Josh

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  52. The Rock Church Spanish Service by

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    If you have a desire to reach the Spanish speaking community here in Utah, or know someone who might be interested in attending or serving at our brand new Rock Church Spanish Service starting May 1 (2:00 p.m.) Read more →

    , contact Felipe Sauvelle right away at: 801 205 4438 – or at our Facebook page: The Rock Church Ministerio en Español. We would love some help! On May 1, our service will consist of great uplifting music and simple, relevant, Bible inspired, life-changing message; completely ’en Español’. Childcare will be provided.

    Si usted tiene el deseo de alcanzar a la comunidad de habla hispana aquí en Utah, o conoce a alguien que este interesado/a y quiera ser parte de nuestro nuevo servicio en Español de The Rock Church comenzando este 1er de Mayo, contáctenos lo mas pronto posible a:801 205 4438 — o en nuestra pagina en Facebook: The Rock Church Ministerio en Español. En Mayo, el servicio tendrá música que inspira el corazón y un mensaje que sera simple, relevante, basado en la Biblia que transformara vidas, completamente en Español.

    Posted in Draper, News, Spanish by

  53. War Room Movie Night by

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    War Room

    Looking for a family friendly, hard-hitting, enjoyable and powerful movie to invite your friends to … at The Rock Church? Here is your chance! On Friday, April 29 (7:00 p.m.) we will be hosting a showing of the hit movie WAR ROOM.

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    From the award-winning creators of Fireproof and Courageous comes WAR ROOM (a compelling drama with humor and heart that explores the power that prayer can have on marriages, parenting, careers, friendships, and every other area of our lives). Tickets (Suggested donation, $5 for two tickets or $10 for a family of any size) are available online and at the Draper location Storefront. There will be free popcorn and soda for the movie! We’d love to have you join us.

    GET TICKETS

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  54. Resurrection by

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    Resurrection

    This past weekend we celebrated Easter — the celebration of the death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. It’s a time to remember what Jesus did for us when He conquered death on the cross. You might still wonder, what is the significance of the Resurrection and what did it accomplish for us?

    First, we can know that the Resurrection of Jesus Christ justifies us before God. In Romans 4:25 Paul writes… “Who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.” Justification means, “the action of declaring or making righteous in the sight of God.” We can take great comfort in this truth. Because of our sinful nature we are separated from God and are not at all capable of a relationship with him (see more in Romans 6:28 and Isaiah 59:2). But, Jesus stepped in and took our punishment. He was the payment for our sins, something that we couldn’t do on our own!

    Read more →

    Second, it gave Jesus victory over death. In Romans 6:9 it says, “We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him.” The Resurrection showed that Jesus conquered death. Death is the punishment that we deserve, but Jesus took it upon Himself. Every one of us will die; nothing will let us escape it. But, Jesus rose from death — it had no control over Him. When we die, we will either let the punishment that was given to Jesus cover us or we will have to pay for it on our own. Death is no longer an enemy of ours because Jesus has defeated it. We do not need to fear death!

    Lastly, the Resurrection unites us with Christ. In 2 Corinthians 4:14 we read, “Knowing that he who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and bring us with you into his presence.” When we transfer our faith from ourselves and give it to Jesus, we are united with Him. This union means that we are clothed in the righteousness of Jesus and bound together by the Holy Spirit.

    Let us daily remember what the Resurrection means to us as Christians!

    Remembering,

    Tony

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  55. Faithful by

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    Faithful

    “Moses was faithful in all God’s house as a servant, to testify to the things that were to be spoken later, but Christ is faithful over God’s house as a son.” Hebrews 3:5-6

    In Exodus, we read that it took some time for Moses to accept the fact that God had huge plans for his life. You might wonder why that was?

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    I think the reason Moses was so reluctant was because he was the kind of guy that once he started something, he finished it completely. And the task the Lord was putting in front of him was something that was going to take a lot of time. It was going to make his life uncomfortable. Moses was 80 years old; he wasn’t naïve. He knew what kind of undertaking God was asking of him and he was reluctant. Once he accepted the call, however, he was all in. Moses was a faithful servant to God.

    Christian, what has God called you to be faithful in? Is it something (that like Moses) you’re hesitant to fully accept? How has God called you to serve your church? How does He want you to spend your time and your resources?

    If you’ve been given a spouse, you are called by God to be faithful to him or her. If you’ve been given children, you are called by God to be faithful parents to your children. If you’ve been given a job you are called by God to be faithful with the time you spend at your job and the quality of work you do. This also applies to the little things. If we say we’re going to do something, we need to do it quickly, completely and joyfully.

    Even if His calling on your life takes a lot of time or causes you discomfort, be like Moses and make the commitment to be “all in”! Be found faithful with all He wants you to do!

    Faithfully,

    Billy

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  56. Easter Week by

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    Easter at The Rock Church, Celebrating the Resurrection of Jesus Christ

    It’s Easter Week. The week we celebrate our Savior. The week we remember His sacrifice on the cross for our sins. The week we remember His mighty triumph over sin and death. With Easter upon us, I’ve been contemplating the Resurrection.

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    The Resurrection is central to Christianity. It sets us apart from other religions. Most every religion has a central figure, but only in Christianity do we find the power to conquer death, the power to live again.

    And that is where we, as Christians, find hope.

    We have hope for eternal life with our Savior. We have hope that we will one day be reunited with our loved ones who have passed from this temporal life into eternity. We have hope that one day every tear will be wiped away, there will be no more sadness or sorrow. We have hope that one day we will be in the presence of the One who loved us enough to die for us.

    Life is full of losses and pain. We are told in John 16:33 that we will have trouble in this world. But, Christ follows that up with the promise that we can have hope because He has overcome the world!

    I don’t know what you are facing this beautiful upcoming Easter weekend. I don’t know if you are dealing with your sin or the sin of someone else. I don’t know if you are facing betrayal or hurt or pain. I don’t know if you feel like you are dead. But, I do know that the One who died on a cross many years ago for your sins, has the power to resurrect you to a full and abundant life right here on this earth.

    Don’t give up! Life is available to all who seek Jesus!

    Happy Resurrection Week!

    Please join us at one of our five services happening at our three locations!

    • Friday, March 25 at 7:00 p.m. at our West location
    • Saturday, March 26 at 7:00 p.m. at our Salt Lake City location
    • Sunday, March 27 at 7:30 a.m. (Sunrise Service on the North Lawn), 9:30 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. at our Draper location

    Hope to see you there!

    Bill Young

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  57. Heart Sisters Conference by

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    Heart Sisters Conference

    We all long to have deep, meaningful, and God-honoring relationships with other women, don’t we? Having good relationships is so important for every aspect of our lives. Sometimes, it’s not as easy as we’d like. Sometimes, we could use a little help! GREAT NEWS!

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    We have a women’s conference designed just for you!

    Please join us for fellowship, worship and very practical teachings about how you can be the friend you’ve always wanted to have. Topics include: how your “life story” can affect the relationships in your life, how to successfully engage in conflict resolution, and how friendships change during the different seasons of your life. It doesn’t get more practical than that!

    Our guest speaker will be Natalie Chambers Snapp, author of the book “Heart Sisters – Be the Friend You Want To Have”. (These books are available at all Rock location Storefronts for $10) Natalie is passionate about helping women build strong relationships with other women.

    Also, we have created a Spotify playlist of the songs we’ll be singing at the conference. Feel free to download it and enjoy them ahead of time.

    This is a conference you’re not going to want to miss!

    REGISTER TODAY!

    DATE:

    • Friday, April 22: 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. (registration starts at 6:00 p.m.)
    • Saturday, April 23: 9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. (light breakfast at 8:00 a.m.)

    COST:

    • $29.00 (box lunch included), $22.00 (bring your own)

    LOCATION:

    • 11630 S 700 E, Draper, UT 84020

    REGISTRATION:

    QUESTIONS? please contact:

    Hope to see you there!

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  58. God Goes Before You by

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    God Goes Before You

    I decided to keep my thoughts short and sweet. I simply wanted to share with you the truth that God has been encouraging me with these past few months. You can find it in one of my favorite Bible passages — Psalm 139. Much of the Psalm is dedicated to the fact that we cannot escape from God’s presence. In fact, verse seven says just that: “I can NEVER escape from Your Spirit! I can NEVER get away from your presence!”

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    The verse that has been really exciting for me, however, is found just a few lines before in Psalm 139:5. It says this, “You (God) go before me and follow me. You place Your hand of blessing on my head.” What a wonderful truth. Do you have something coming up in the future that is making you anxious? God says, “Don’t worry about that because I have gone before you.” Do you have something in the past that troubles you or causes you to question? God says “I knew that would happen, but don’t worry, I will work it out for your good.”

    The end of verse five says that “God places His hand of blessing on our head.” As Christians, we must never forget that God has GOOD PLANS for us despite our circumstances. He has seen our future, and He is Lord of our past. “Rockers”, take comfort this week in the presence of God. He is close. He is in control. He is good. I love you.

    Walking with you,

    Steele

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  59. Hospitality by

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    Hospitality

    “Let brotherly love continue. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.” Hebrews 13:1

    The New Testament is full of commands to “practice hospitality” so Krista and I have been striving to meet and show hospitality to our neighbors. God has given us opportunities to have four of our eight surrounding neighbors over for a meal in the past year. At Christmas time, one of our neighbors (who we had over for dinner a year ago), gave us a gift and card. In the card they wrote, “Merry Christmas to our best neighbors ever!” I was simultaneously encouraged and saddened by that. I was encouraged that they appreciated our hospitality so much. But, then I thought, “We just had you over for dinner once!”. We’ve talked to our neighbors when we have seen them outside, but “best neighbor ever”?! The hospitality bar is indeed low, but God can use us, Church.

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    It is so easy to make excuses for why we don’t practice hospitality. I found this quote by author Alex Strauch. It is very convicting because I have thought every one of these things myself. Alex wrote this:

    “At our heart, we are all selfish and selfishness is the single greatest enemy of hospitality. We do not want to be inconvenienced. We don’t want to share our privacy or time with others. We are consumed with our personal comforts. We want to be free to go about our business without interference or concern for other people’s needs. We don’t want the responsibility and work that hospitality entails. We are greedy and don’t want to share our food, home or money. We are afraid that we will be used or that our property will sustain damage.”

    Let’s forget the excuses and practice hospitality!

    With you,

    Josh

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  60. March Prayer List by

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    March Prayer List

    “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” –Romans 12:12

    We are rejoicing in hope. May we also be patient in tribulation, and constant in prayer. God wants to hear from His people! Pray with us this February for the future of The Rock, and for us to realize our goal of winning to Christ one life at a time, and one world in our lifetime.

    Read more →

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  61. Where Is Your Hope? by

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    Where Is Your Hope?

    “For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.” Romans 15:4

    This past week I had two dear friends die. It was a rough week for many of us who loved them. I felt a bit shaken and found myself waking up at night trying to get my head around the fact that these dear ones with whom I had enjoyed fellowship, laugher, and labor for Jesus with were now… gone. I prayed for their families and talked to God about how I was feeling.

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    The reality of pain, suffering, and death forced me to ask once again, “Where is my hope?” One month before he died, Jean-Paul Sartre (a well-known atheist) was agonizing over the thought of death. He was heard to say again and again, “I know I shall die in hope…but hope needs a foundation!” I am so thankful to God for giving us a solid foundation on which we can have hope — even as we walk through the valley of death. These verses have ministered to me during times of grief and sorrow. I hope they will minister to you.

    “Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. According to the Lord’s own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage each other with these words.” 1Thessalonians 4:13-18 (NIV)

    Amen! As Christians, we have a hope beyond the grave! So, let me ask you today, “Where is your hope?” Is it in your health? Is it in your finances? In your success? There are no guarantees in life. Or are there? The real question is, “What is your hope founded on?”

    As you face difficulties this week, let your hope be founded on the Scriptures. Let God’s Word fill you with hope as you read it and apply it to your life everyday!

    Encouraged by hope,

    Bill

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  62. Teach What Is Good by

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    Teach What Is Good

    This past Friday (February 12), we had a Cookie Exchange for our newfound Ladies Night for our Salt Lake City location (Every second Friday of the month!) It was encouraging to see women meeting new women, breaking down walls, and building community. It was a success to say the least, especially if you measure success in number of cookies exchanged.

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    It was a shining moment for our grassroots Women’s Ministry. I’ve recently been learning that a Women’s Ministry doesn’t have to be this fancy, formal, organized program. But, it does have to occur. It’s the day-in, day-out, lived and breathed moments women share with women. And guess what? This is a Biblical idea.

    God commands women to learn from other women through Paul in Titus 2.

    “Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.”

    Paul used the Greek word Kalodidaskalous, which has since been translated as “Teach what is good.” Kalodidaskalous is a way of teaching through combining example and behavior, character and lifestyle. Paul is essentially saying, “Teach by your character, but show by your lifestyle.” It’s one thing to teach what is good through instruction; it’s another thing to teach what is good through lived example.

    It’s important to understand this isn’t about age. This is about spiritual maturity. A mentor, or someone who is spiritually mature, is one who “has a more complete puzzle of life assembled, guiding me in the placement of my missing pieces.”

    Practically, this means we need to be in relationships with others. We can’t learn what is good through an isolated incident. Ask God for humility to start this kind of honest, “teach-what-is-good” relationship in your own life. Ask God for humility to be transparent with another woman so she can learn from you. Ask God for a humble heart to be taught.

    “Humble yourselves before the Lord and He will lift you up.” (James 4:10)

    Whether it’s over a new cookie recipe, meeting weekly over coffee, or during your child’s naptime, be a Titus 2 woman – one who is not too proud to ask for help, and is never too proud to learn.

    Learning and Teaching,
    Natalee Kasmiskie

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  63. Called by Name by

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    Called by Name

    We don’t know a lot about Bezalel. He isn’t one of the main Bible characters that we think about and he isn’t often taught about in church. I imagine he was a seemingly average guy to most people and that is what intrigues me about God’s incredible call on his life.

    After Israel was set free from Egypt and the Lord was instructing Moses (we are told about this in Exodus 35:30b-33), we read — “See, the Lord has called by name Bezalel… and he has filled him with the Spirit of God, with skill, with intelligence, with knowledge, and with all craftsmanship, to devise artistic designs, to work in gold and silver and bronze, in cutting stones for setting, and in carving wood, for work in every skilled craft.” The Lord called Bezalel by name to build the Altar, the Ark of the Covenant, and all other sorts of beautiful artifacts that were crucially important to the Jews.

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    Christian, how has the Lord called you? What skill has He given you? What talent has He filled you with? Where has He placed you? God has called you by name and given you a job to do. Maybe it’s being a mother or father, maybe a manager, or a forklift operator, or a doctor, or even a designer or architect? The point is, God has given you the skill and the ability to do something amazing, big or small, heroic or even mundane.

    Like Bezalel, you are called by name to be a follower of Christ and to impact His Kingdom. Today, this week, and in all you do, work with skill, work with diligence, work with integrity, work with pride. In that way, the Spirit of God will shine through you to an unbelieving and dying world.

    You may never know the full extent of the impact you have on others. But, the Lord has called you to your post and He sees it all.

    Called by Name,

    Austin

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  64. ReVive Leadership by

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    ReVive Leadership

    Are you a leader at The Rock Church? Are you interested in hearing some amazing (and very relevant) teachings about spiritual gifts? If you answered “yes” to those questions, have we got a morning planned for you! Plan on joining us on Saturday, February 20 (Draper location) at 9:00 a.m. We will spend time worshiping, praying and listening to some very practical messages from John Meyer (our Mountains West Regional Leader) about spiritual gifts in the church and in our lives as well. All are welcome — leaders are expected.

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    We will be going over a paper a GCLI paper focused on the five gifts identified in Ephesians 4:11. Other GCC papers have addressed some of the gifts described in this verse. For example, the GCLI paper on “The Local Church and National Ministries” by John Hopler discussed the apostolic gift; the evangelist gifting was addressed in a GCLI paper “New Testament Evangelism in Action Today” by Tom Short; and the elder-pastor gift was the focus of the book “New Testament Leadership in Action Today” by Brent Knox and John Hopler. However, we in GCC have never devoted an entire paper to Ephesians 4:11 that focused on all five of the gifts described in this verse. Our desire is that God will raise up more Ephesians 4:11 leaders in GCC churches so that we may be more effective in fulfilling the Great Commission of Jesus Christ.

    These are the two papers we will be going over, please download and fill out the spiritual survey before Saturday morning!

    PDF   A GCC DISCUSSION OF EPHESIANS 4:11-13

    PDF   LIFEWAY SPIRITUAL GIFT SURVEY

    Here is the tentative schedule For Saturday, 2/20/2016:

    • 9:00 A.M — Arrive, mingle
    • 9:10 — Begin, Welcome (Bill)
    • 9:10-9:40 — Worship (Caleb)
    • 9:40-10:10 — Concert of Prayer (Bill)
    • 10:10-10:15 — Break
    • 10:15-11:10 — Teaching on Spiritual Gifts (John M)
    • 11:10-11:30 — Spiritual Gifts follow up thoughts (Josh)
    • 11:30-noon — Break down into discussion groups – talk about Spiritual Gifts Survey
    • Noon — End

    Questions? Please contact Bill Young at bill@experiencetherock.com.

    Hope to see you then!

    The Rock Church

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  65. Love On Display by

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    Love on Display

    Jesus was quite serious about the love and sacrifice we should have towards one another as Christians. In John 13:34-35 He says, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.”

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    The Apostle John reaffirms this truth and puts a little more meat on the bones in 1 John 3:18; “Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.” What the Apostle John is trying to get across is that we shouldn’t just merely talk about love, but that it needs to be seen in our actions. Others should be able to see it!

    For example, if you were going to bake a cake, and only talked about adding sugar to it, (never actually adding the sugar), the end result will be a pretty bitter cake. If this kept happening, eventually, people wouldn’t want to eat your cake. In a similar way, a Christian talking about love, yet never actually showing it, would make for a pretty bitter Christian!

    God’s will is that our lives would be filled with love that displays itself through compassion, hospitality, mercy, and love towards each other. Jesus demonstrated love with His life. Christ loved His people so much that He gave His life for them. That’s tremendous and sacrificial love!

    Does your love for the people of God look at all like Jesus’? Sacrificial in any way? A love for God will always be accompanied by a love for His people.

    Christian, how are you doing in showing Christ-like love towards other believers? Maybe you feel like you are doing a great job? Is there room to grow? Maybe life is just too busy and you feel like there is no time to pursue others? Wherever you are in your life, take a moment this week to pray and ask God who it is you could serve, encourage, build up, take a meal to, or go out to coffee with? Even if it seems small or insignificant, remember these three truths: you’ll be obeying God, you’ll be showing love like Jesus, and you’ll be a blessing to those on the receiving end of your affections.

    Grace to you!

    Bryan

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  66. Jesus Is Better series by

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    Jesus Is Better series

    The stories of the Old Testament can sometimes be unfamiliar to us as Christians. It says in Romans 15:4, “For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.” But, like this verse in Romans states, they were written to instruct us.

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    Join us as we spend 12 weeks (02.05.16 – 04.24.16) at all of our locations studying through a variety of Old Testament characters. Studying their lives in greater detail will both instruct and challenge us. But, it doesn’t stop there. These Old Testament characters don’t simply instruct and encourage us. They also point (like a big, old laser beam) to Jesus. Jesus is the ultimate example of what it means to live a life of faith. All of these heroes of the Old Testament are ultimately a version of or a picture of Jesus.

    We pray this series will bless you!

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  67. Unbelief by

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    Unbelief, A Word from Pastor Tony D'Amico

    “And Jesus said to him, “‘If you can’! All things are possible for one who believes.” Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, “I believe; help my unbelief!” Mark 9:23-24

    This verse is about Jesus healing the boy with the unclean spirit. The father of the boy knew that Jesus and His disciples were doing some pretty incredible things, so he decided to take his son to the disciples for help. They were not able to cast out the evil spirit. Jesus, in His love, then came and asked the man what he was looking for? The man asked for compassion and help for his son.

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    What struck me about this story was the vulnerability of that man — his unbelief was so visible. He didn’t act as if he knew everything or had all of the answers. He wasn’t proud about what he thought he knew. Instead, his response was “I believe, help my unbelief!” He confessed that he had some faith but also recognized his spiritual weakness. He appealed to Jesus to create in him a heart that truly believed.

    As we go through our daily walks with Christ, we need to remember this man’s example. We need to pray as he did. James 4:2 says, “You do not have because you do not ask God”. How often do we express our unbelief to our Father? It’s natural to have doubts, but those are the times that we need to cry out to Jesus! Our pride can get in the way, however. We want others to think that “we have it all together” or that we don’t ever have unbelief in our lives. The truth is, when we come to Jesus with an honest, open heart (expressing exactly how we are feeling), He will guide us along the right path.

    We can learn a good deal from the man in the verses above (about his vulnerability to express his unbelief to Jesus). When we come to the times of unbelief in our lives, we need to call out to our Father in prayer. He can and will help us get through those times. Take some time today and ask God to help you increase your faith.

    Crying out to the Father –

    Tony

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  68. February Prayer List by

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    February Prayer List

    “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” –Romans 12:12

    We are rejoicing in hope. May we also be patient in tribulation, and constant in prayer. God wants to hear from His people! Pray with us this February for the future of The Rock, and for us to realize our goal of winning to Christ one life at a time, and one world in our lifetime.

    Read more →

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  69. 10 Percent by

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    10 Percent, A Word by Bill Johnson

    “Honor the Lord with your wealth, with the first fruits of all your crops; then your barns will be filled to overflowing, and your vats will brim over with new wine.” Proverbs 3:9-10

    God doesn’t need our money. Not only does He have complete control of all the money in the world, but it isn’t like He is saving up to buy something He really wants.

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    He is the Creator of all things (again, He doesn’t need our money), but He will test our hearts with money. Matthew 6:21 tells us that, “Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

    God loves a cheerful giver (2 Corinthians 9:7). He wants us to have no other gods but Him (Exodus 20:3), including the god of money.

    He asks us to give a tenth, or a tithe, of what we earn to honor Him. You have to understand, it’s not a one-way transaction. We don’t give to God and He forgets about it. No, these verses say He blesses us when we give to Him. Think about all of the ways God has blessed you over the last year. There is plenty more where that came from!

    I have no problem giving ten percent of my money to God. It reminds me that money is just money. It’s not my friend; it’s just a tool that God gives me to steward.

    God is so much more than anything money can buy. He is: my Good Shepherd, my Master, my King, my Friend, my Companion, my Protector, my Provider, my Father, my Hope for everlasting life and my Joy when my life is hard.

    He is my Savior. When I reflect on that and then look at all of the income He has given me and all of the ways He has provided for me, I will gladly give Him the ten percent He asks for.

    Church, let’s spend this year seeking God’s Kingdom and His Righteousness instead of worrying about money and the things of this world.

    Happy to give,

    Billy

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  70. Trusting by

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    Trusting, A Word by Pastor Steve McInroy

    I’ve recently been walking through some major changes in my life and the “unknowns” can be very challenging, to say the least. I can tend to lean on many of my past experiences to help negotiate the way and that is somewhat helpful. But, most of the time, I really don’t know what’s going to happen. I do know that it ultimately all comes down to me trusting God in everything.

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    When facing the “unknowns” in my own strength, things tend to spiral out of control. It’s similar to flying a kite when conditions are not friendly. When I’m impatient and run ahead of God, it’s like a kite trying to fly when the wind is too strong. The kite gets beaten and broken, and falls apart. When I stall and get frozen in fear, it’s as if there is no wind at all and no matter how hard I try (or not try), it’s as if there no wind for flight to help me get things done.

    Trusting God should be simple. And it is — beautifully, excruciatingly simple. But, I can forget that and then almost always end up questioning why I didn’t start out trusting in an omnipotent, omniscient, all-knowing, and all-powerful God, rather than trying to do things in my own strength?

    Here’s an example from my own life. I have been in the throngs of selling and moving out of my home in Provo and buying and remodeling a house in Draper. I felt my vast construction prowess and experience would carry me through the fast paced schedule I had planned. Not so. I totaled our car on Christmas Eve (thankfully, no one was hurt). On New Year’s Day, some pipes froze and flooded the basement of our newly purchased home. My schedule was in chaos and I was a bit frazzled. Finally, I came to a place where I had to laugh to keep from crying. I simply praised God and asked for help.

    Some of my favorite verses came to mind, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” (Proverbs 3:5-6). No matter what unknown you face today, go to God and trust Him completely and whole-heartedly.

    Do not rely on your own experience or know-how. Be like a helpless infant and look to God and He will ALWAYS come through to lift you up and show you the way.

    Walking down straight paths,

    Mac

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  71. Amazed by

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    Amazed, A Word From The Pastor

    Those who are wise will take all this to heart;
 they will see in our history the faithful love of the Lord.” Psalm 107:43

    Recently, I had the privilege of speaking to our SLC location about the amazing things God has done through The Rock Church in 2015. When we look at our history of just one year, we truly see the faithful love of the Lord.

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    Here are a few highlights to celebrate God’s faithful love:

    In 2015, The Rock Church saw 103 Salvations, celebrated 58 Baptisms, and had an average weekly attendance of 941 people. That’s a lot of changed lives!

    In the SLC location alone we also:

    • Remodeled the entire building top to bottom (including a brand new sound system and lighting rig)
    • Reorganized our leadership structure to emphasize the role of deacon and relational value of Small Group leaders
    • Re-emphasized the vision for each ministry along with Mission Statements and instructions
    • Initiated Hangout Nights with local food trucks
    • Partnered with Local First to have a presence in the city
    • Initiated “Summer in the City” where we have been a part of reaching our community through: art festivals, concerts, farmers markets, art displays
    • Partnered with the City of South Salt Lake to initiate relationships and friendship with our local government
    • Had an Easter outreach where we purchased dinner for all the people who came to church
    • Had a Christmas Party
    • Released four albums
    • Had a Volunteer Appreciation lunch at Publik Coffee Shop
    • Added a weekly SG meeting and introduced our monthly CORE gatherings
    • Had a CORE Retreat at Big Canyon Ranch with all of our small groups (for two nights)
    • Had a neighborhood outreach with Rocktoberfest

    These are just SOME of the things God did in 2015! His faithful love is so easy to see!

    All of these plans rev me up for 2016. We’ve been praying that God has even more in store for us in this coming year.

    C.T. Studd said, “Some wish to live within the sound of church or chapel bell; I want to run a rescue shop within a yard of hell.”

    Amen! Won’t you please join us in what God is doing?!

    Running a rescue shop with you,

    Steele

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  72. Resolution by

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    Resolution, A Word by Pastor Josh Whitney

    Church, we have just started a new year — 2016. Many people make resolutions at the start of a new year — to eat healthier or exercise more. A resolution is defined as “a firm decision to do something”. Church, could I challenge all of you to make the resolution that 2016 is the year you read God’s Word every day? The Scripture promises us many benefits from studying God’s Word.
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    Do you want to be pure in our evil world?
    “How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to your word.” — Psalm 119:9

    Do you want to have an answer for people who criticize you?
    “Then shall I have an answer for him who taunts me, for I trust in your word.” — Psalm 119:42

    Do you want to increase in knowledge and good judgment?
    “Teach me good judgment and knowledge, for I believe in your commandments.” — Psalm 119:66

    Do you have to have strength in the midst of trials?
    “If your law had not been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction.” — Psalm 119:92

    Do you want to study something perfect?
    “I have seen a limit to all perfection, but your commandment is exceedingly broad.” — Psalm 119:96

    Do you want to be wiser than your elders?
    “I have more understanding than all my teachers, for your testimonies are my meditation.” — Psalm 119:99

    Do you want to be able to see where you are going in life?
    “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” — Psalm 119:105

    Psalm 119 continues to list the endless benefits of reading God’s Word. Many godly believers have read through the Bible over the course of a year. You can, too! On our Resource page (on our website), we offer a few different reading plans that can very helpful. Check them out.

    Resolved,

    Josh

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  73. The Giver by

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    by Bill Young

    “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.” Isaiah 41:10 NIV

    I trust you all had a Christ-filled Christmas! We have so much to be thankful for — God has been kind and faithful to us in 2015. Even though our church had its share of struggles and financial challenges, we made some amazing eternal investments this year that resulted in faith expanding, lives changing and eternity being different!

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    Personally, I know I’ve been trying to apply faith this year. But, to be honest, it has been difficult at times. As a pastor and leader of this church, I bear the burden of church finances. To be honest, there are times I need to remind myself of the truth found in Isaiah 41:10 and make a choice not to fear. I am comforted by the fact that God can be trusted to answer our prayers and meet our needs.

    Two weeks ago, after announcing our End-of-Year giving opportunity, we received several major gifts (along with many smaller gifts) — ALL were received with joy! God is so kind. I think He just gave us another “wink, wink” from heaven. This response of generosity should really encourage us as a church, especially because so many of us have been praying for a financial miracle. God is faithful. And even though we still have a way to go, I am believing that by God’s grace we will be able to end 2015 in the black. Amazing! By the way, you can still make an end of year gift by clicking on this link.

    Finally, let us never forget that each gift given this year-small or large-was a miracle, a kindness of God. Every one of you who trusted God and gave to The Rock Church helped make 2015 a year that we will never forget. Over 100 people turned to Christ in faith and thousands heard the Gospel. Utah is different because of you! Thank-you to everyone who sacrificed and joyfully honored Jesus by giving to Him. He will not forget your generosity — and neither will we.

    Church, I hope this is encourages your heart. Please know that the same God who gave us the amazing gift of His Son, Jesus, is looking after you as well. I believe that. Do you?

    May we never forget the faithfulness of our God.

    Humbled by the Giver,

    Bill

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  74. Peace by

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    Peace, A Word by Caleb Yetton

    “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6

    Christmas is upon us! What a wonderful time of year. I love getting to spend extra time with my family — laughing, eating and enjoying all the festivities. But, most of all, the Christmas season is a wonderful opportunity to think of Jesus’ purpose in coming to earth as a baby.

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    We have all heard the verse above. Whether it has been quoted in Christmas pageants or movies, the familiarity of these words can sometimes lose their potency. I love to read this verse each Christmas and be reminded of who Jesus is. Every year I am struck again by the title Jesus is given, “Prince of Peace”. In a world where we see the polar opposite of peace, are we looking to the Prince of Peace?

    I think, at times, we misunderstand the ultimate reason our Lord and Savior is given this name. Jesus’ message wasn’t immediate world peace — the end of war and suffering. Jesus was born a baby, lived a perfect life, died a brutal death and conquered the grave that we might have spiritual and eternal peace with a Holy God! The truth of the matter is that there is NO peace apart from Jesus Christ. He came so that we can walk in peace despite all the evil and chaos around us. In John 16:33 Jesus says, “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”

    Do you have peace this Christmas? Do you have the peace that comes from knowing your sins are pardoned before a perfectly just God? Do you have peace knowing that God is your defender and that He loves you unfathomably? Is there peace in your marriage, in your parenting, in your singleness or in your career? Do have peace knowing that God will lead you in what is right, wise, and good for your life? Turn to Jesus. Turn the Prince of Peace.

    Praise God for the peace that surpasses all understanding and that only comes from Him!

    Merry Christmas!

    Caleb

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  75. Three Top Reason To Send In Your End Of Year Gift by

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    Gift Info 2015

    Three Top Reason To Send IN Your End Of Year Gift

    1. The Lost were won: In 2015 hundreds of people came to know Jesus as Lord!
    2. Believers were built: Solid messages from God’s Word strengthened the church!
    3. The Gospel was preached: The Good News was proclaimed at home and abroad!

    Your generous gifts changed lives in 2015!
    We are thrilled about all of the opportunities that lie ahead for us in 2016. Your investment will make an eternal difference, strengthen souls and help proclaim the Good News of Jesus. Thanks for being on mission with us!

    DONATE NOW

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  76. The Big Plan by

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    Big Plan, by Austin Fredrickson

    There have been times in my Christian walk where, if I am being honest, I have been tempted to think: “Why won’t God just answer my prayers?” I can tend to look at a situation and think I know what would be best and assume that I know what God should do. Really, how foolish is that?

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    Recently, while reading through the Gospels, I was struck with this thought — there are times God isn’t ultimately concerned with what I want Him to do.

    Let’s look at Peter, one of the most crucial leaders of the early church. First, he tells Jesus He shouldn’t go to Jerusalem to be delivered over to the Jews. Jesus rebukes him and essentially calls him the devil. Later, when Jesus is being betrayed, Peter pulls out his sword and cuts off a dude’s ear! What does Jesus do? He stays calm and allows those men to take Him in.

    Now, let’s look at the Crucifixion. Jesus was hanging on the cross while people mocked Him, reviled Him, and said they would believe in Him if he saved Himself. Jesus’ own mother (who was near to the cross) watched her first born son, her little baby boy (who was promised to rule the nations and save Israel), be tortured and mocked. How terrible do you think those moments were for Mary? How desperately do you think she prayed for Him to be saved?

    But, Jesus was not done. Three days later, He arose from the dead and fulfilled a plan that had been laid out from the beginning of time! He conquered death and took away the sins of the whole world, bringing us into a right relationship with God.

    Be encouraged Christian — God has big plans. When we don’t get what we want it’s for good reason. Thank God He doesn’t always answer our prayers the way we want! I’m so grateful to worship a God who has big plans and sees a better future than I could ever imagine.

    In Him,

    Austin

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  77. Impulse by

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    Impulse by Bryan D. Edwards

    “Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving.” Colossians 4:2

    Martyn Lloyd-Jones once said, “Always respond to every impulse to pray.” His words have stuck with me. I have impulses all the time. And I don’t know about you, but my first impulse isn’t always to pray. I have the impulse to sleep in another ten minutes, eat three more cinnamon rolls, sleep in another ten minutes, buy that pair of socks I don’t really need, or sleep in another ten minutes. Honestly, the impulse or desire to pray doesn’t always make the top of my list.

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    Not all impulses are bad, however. Some can be beneficial, others a bit unwise, and then there are those that can be quite dangerous. We all know (very well) about our own temptations and impulses to sin.
    But, the one impulse I desire to have more and more, is the impulse to simply pray. The Apostle Paul encourages this very thing in Colossians when he writes, “Continue steadfastly in prayer.” What he means is for the Christian not to let go of prayer but to be courageously persistent in it. Let your intimacy with God only grow stronger as you continue to approach Him in prayer. Never give up on it!

    Why? Because that impulse, that desire to pray, will always be for our good.
    Christian, are you acting on every impulse to pray? In the good times and the bad? When the car breaks down, will you pray? When grandma gets sick, do you pray? When you get that raise at work, will you pray? When your child comes to a saving faith in Jesus Christ, do you pray? When you are tempted to sin, do you pray? When you don’t desire God, will you pray?

    Friends, my hope and prayer is that in both the good times and bad, we would be a church that always acts on the impulse to pray!

    Praying,

    Bryan

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  78. Introducing PCO Give by

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    Introducing PCO Give

    We’ve been using Planning Center Online for three years for our service plans and serving schedule, which has been tremendously successful. Over the last 18 months, PCO has released numerous applications that are fully integrated in order to give us a central location for church management. This is incredibly helpful in coordinating and uniting so much information into one database. We started using PCO Registrations for all event registrations PCO Resources for building usage needs this year.

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    Just recently, they have added PCO Give and it’s time to change the way you give on-line!

    What are we talking about, you ask? Here are some important changes coming your way.

    Until now, most of you have used either PayPal or SecureGive as a way to contribute on-line. No more! Starting January 1, 2016, we will be switching to PCO Give as our primary method of online or electronic giving (no giving transactions will be processed at our Storefront locations anymore, either).

    What do you need to do to make the switch? Nothing. It has all been done for you. Simply visit www.experiencetherock.com/give and you can start giving today!

    Questions? Please contact Brent Kendall

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  79. Rejoice by

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    by Tony D'Amico

    Recently, I have been living inside of the Psalms, reading them over and over again. I just love how David wrote down his thoughts so poetically.

    One of the Psalms that really spoke to me, was Psalm 40. David expressed what I believe is a scenario we all tend to experience when we first get saved.

    First, in verses 40:1-3, God pulls us out of our old life and gives us a new song, new life, gives us salvation. Then, in verses 40:4-10, there is that exciting feeling we have knowing all of the great things that God has done for us — we proclaim it to the world. Next, in verses 40:11-15, we see the critics, the skeptics, the haters of God. The ones who start to attack our new found life with Him! They try to destroy, humiliate and shame us for loving God.

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    That is a crossroads we all face as both new and seasoned Christians. What do we do at that point? Do we succumb to our enemies and proclaim what they are saying is true? OF COURSE NOT! We keep the steady pace and follow what God has for us — He has sent the Holy Sprit to help us in times like that and always.

    Finally, in verse 40:16, we see how David responds (and a great lesson, too) in how we should as well… “But may all who seek You rejoice and be glad in You; may those who love Your salvation say continually, “Great is the Lord!”

    God loves us. He wants a relationship with us. He wants to protect us from the enemy. When you are in those situations, rejoice and be glad and continually say, “Great is the Lord”. He will take care of the rest.

    Rejoicing –

    Tony

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  80. Thanksgiving by

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    by Billy Johnson

    “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7

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    Well, it’s that time of year again. Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and will kick off the holiday season! Most of us will start by celebrating the day with family or friends and enjoying a meal together. Then, before we know it, Christmas will be here and a week later 2015 will be over!

    There are a lot of things you could be anxious about over the next five weeks — cooking meals, entertaining and spending time with big groups, staying within your budget (while buying Christmas gifts), and a smaller paycheck for some (because of the shortened work weeks). The list could go on and on and on…

    But, don’t despair, the Bible isn’t silent on this topic of anxiety! In Philippians 4, the Apostle Paul tells us not to be anxious about anything! That’s very hard to do. Thankfully, Paul gives us some practical ways to curb our anxieties. He continues, “but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”

    When I’m anxious, it’s easy for me to remember that I need to go to God in prayer. But, I feel like most of the time I forget the “with thanksgiving” part of this verse. We should all be thankful for what God has given us — even in the things that cause us anxiety. Why? Because God promises that when we pray to Him, with thankfulness, He will guard our hearts and our minds in Christ Jesus.

    I am looking forward to thanking God tomorrow for all He has done for my family, for our church, and for me. I am trusting God will come through on this promise to guard my heart and mind this holiday season as I come to Him with a thankful heart in prayer. Will you join me?

    So thankful,

    Billy

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  81. A Special Message From The Rock Church by

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    Special Message

    With hearts of faith and a clear sense of leading from the Lord, I want to share some difficult yet exciting news with you.

    This past weekend, we announced at all of our locations, that after eight years of incredible ministry in Utah County, we will be closing down The Provo Rock location on December 27. There have been many factors in making this decision and as leaders, we have sought the Lord diligently and trust that He is leading.

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    From the start, our Provo location has been a bit of a “mission outpost”, ministering to all sorts of people and the incredible diversity we’ve had has been a glory to God. We will not know the full extent of what God has done there until we see Jesus face to face but, at the very least, we stepped out in faith (anything done in faith is never in vain). I Corinthians 15:58 reminds us, “Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.”

    A couple of the major components leading to this decision were the need to re-allocate our resources and our leaders.

    The Provo location has been dependent on the other locations for financial support and has not been able to become self-sufficient enough to cover operation and staff costs. With budget challenges for The Rock Churches across the board, we as leaders have had to make some difficult decisions regarding buildings and staff.

    We yearn to be good stewards of all that God has given us. Our other locations have been experiencing explosive growth, especially at our new building in Draper — they could use our help! We have always wanted to be a church on mission (Win the Lost, Build the Believer, Send the Sanctified). This sometimes requires a change of strategy and joining God when and where He is moving. Many of the core people from Provo will be plugging into the Draper location.

    God is definitely moving in Utah and we are still pursuing our Rock Vision — to see “One life at a time one world in our lifetime”. We are stepping forward in faith and will diligently try to communicate this sensitive information in a God-honoring way during this transition.

    The Rock leaders will make a special effort to answer any questions you may have, so please feel free to talk to any of them. Feel to contact us via email or phone. We are planning a Prayer & Praise Service in Provo on December 6, our Christmas Service December 20 and a final prayer service in Provo on December 27.

    Please pray for us during this important and challenging transition. Hebrews 13:8 encourages us, “Pray for us, for we are sure that we have a clear conscience, desiring to act honorably in all things.”

    Sincerely,

    Steve McInroy (Mac) and all of the pastors of The Rock Church

    P.S. If you have questions and you’d like to contact any of the pastors, you can find a list of their email addresses and phone numbers, by visiting our staff page.

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  82. Unshakable by

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    by Steve McInroy

    “Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.” Hebrews 12:28-29

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    These verses magnify how the kingdom of God always triumphs because Jesus Christ is always in charge! Let that sink in for a moment. I intentionally highlighted the phrase “cannot be shaken” because that is an amazing truth that is only realized when we place our hope in Jesus.

    I want to be honest and share with you that I tend to get shaken up over the most ridiculous kinds of things. The old “I-me-my” selfish desires of my heart. The “I-don’t-like-the-taste-of-that”, the “my- home-is-my-sanctuary”, the “why-is-this-person-tailgating-me?” or “this-is-my-time-and-my-space so-leave-me-alone” After all, I deserve what I want, don’t I?

    I’m sickened by my selfishness when I consider what many of my brothers and sisters (across the world) are forced to endure for the cause of Christ. Our world is headed to an end and one simply needs to gaze out the window of life to see it. Yet, in the quiet recesses of my mind, I know God is a consuming fire and He alone will not be shaken.
    The dichotomy of my meager flesh and God as our consuming fire sometimes seems way over my head. That is when I find that I need to desperately dig deeper into His Truth to have a better understanding. Psalm 62:6 says, “He only is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken.”

    Unshakably thankful,

    Mac

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  83. Not Alone by

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    by Steele Croswhite

    “But from then on, only half my men worked while the other half stood guard with spears, shields, bows, and coats of mail. The leaders stationed themselves behind the people of Judah who were building the wall. The laborers carried on their work with one hand supporting their load and one hand holding a weapon. All the builders had a sword belted to their side. The trumpeter stayed with me to sound the alarm.” Nehemiah 4:16-18

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    Recently, I was very blessed to be in community with some of my fellow pastors in our region of churches. The time was largely spent talking about what God was doing in our local body of believers, as well as time discussing ideas of how we might all spread the Gospel more effectively.

    During that time, a particular teaching didn’t necessarily impact me, nor was I overwhelmed by our times of singing and worship. But, as a group of us gathered in the van to head home from Colorado, I felt that the greatest take away for me was that “we’re not alone”. Like these verses in Nehemiah express (as pastors and churches) we are involved in a great work, with a great enemy. But, greater still is our God who binds us together in His good work.

    I was encouraged by the FACT that there are more people involved in the great cause of the Gospel than I tend to remember. There is a deep urgency and joy in other men and women across the entire world who have dedicated their lives to living for Jesus and others.

    This week, in the midst of your work and your commitment to the Gospel, look around and be encouraged that you are not alone. Look to your church, look to your Small Group, look to the cause for Christianity across the globe. Remember that while you may have a “weapon in one hand while carrying your load in the other” you are not alone!

    With you,

    Steele

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  84. Art City Music Festival by

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    Art City Music Festival

    The Rock Church in Provo and The Rock Music are excited to host this year’s Art City Music Festival. This will be the seventh annual ACMF. This unique festival brings song writers and musicians together for a full day of creativity and spontaneity.

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    Participants are introduced to each other in the morning (9:00 a.m.) and then paired together as newly formed bands. Those groups write songs and jam throughout the day, which then culminates into an evening concert for friends, family, and the general public. Anyone can participate and then you won’t want to miss the free concert beginning at 7:00 p.m. Bring a friend and join us on Saturday, November 14.

    Check out the website for more details!

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  85. Gravity by

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    by Josh Whitney

    I recently read a book that talked about the miracle — that the very existence of life on Earth —really is. A few decades ago, scientists estimated that were a mere two factors necessary for a planet to support life. Now that list is up to 150 necessary factors!

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    This may be a little scientific, but hang with me. The mass of Earth is so precisely fine-tuned for life that it is almost beyond comprehension. The mass of Earth directly impacts the gravitational forces. The larger the planet, the stronger the gravity. Inversely, the smaller the planet, the weaker the gravity.

    Now consider this. The molecular weight of methane is 16 g/mol. The molecular weight of ammonia is 17 g/mol. The molecular weight of water is 18 g/mol. Methane and ammonia in higher concentrations are deadly. Obviously, water is necessary for life. Now, Earth’s gravity is so finely tuned that methane and ammonia dissipate into the atmosphere but water remains close to the surface!

    In order for life to exist on Earth, among the 150 factors identified so far by scientists, we need a planet just large enough to keep the water, but small enough to dissipate the methane and ammonia.

    That’s amazing! It says in Romans 1:20, “For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.”

    Next time you take a drink of water or take a breath of air, remember God precisely sized Earth to support life. What an amazing Creator we worship!

    Amazed,

    Josh

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  86. Table Turning God by

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    by Bill Young

    “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28 (NIV)

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    Steele and I had a great opportunity to travel to Iowa last week to teach at a conference for a large evangelical church. It was wonderful! God reminded me of the times in my life that I have looked back on and have seen His amazing kindness and overwhelming power in the midst of difficulties. He has taken some of my darkest circumstances and turned them around in astonishing ways. Even though it’s easy to look back now and be amazed, it’s not always easy to apply faith in the MIDST of the trials.

    This was true of David and his men in the Book of Samuel. They faced overwhelming odds as they came upon the dreaded Amalekite army (who had just destroyed David’s city of Ziklag and taken all their wives and children captive). We pick up the story in 1 Samuel 30:16-20:

    “And there they were, scattered over the countryside, eating, drinking and reveling because of the great amount of plunder they had taken from the land of the Philistines and from Judah. David fought them from dusk until the evening of the next day, and none of them got away, except four hundred young men who rode off on camels and fled. David recovered everything the Amalekites had taken, including his two wives. Nothing was missing: young or old, boy or girl, plunder or anything else they had taken. David brought everything back. He took all the flocks and herds, and his men drove them ahead of the other livestock, saying, “This is David’s plunder.”

    Wow, what a turnaround! The recovery was complete. Everything that had been stolen was recovered. No one was missing. PLUS, they acquired massive amounts of plunder! God is truly a “table-turning” God!

    Do you find yourself in some challenging circumstances? Does it seem like it would take a miracle to change things? If so, do you trust in your all-powerful God? You should! He can completely and radically flip your “bad” situation into an amazing victory in less than twenty-four hours. He did it for David — He can do it for you!

    Don’t give up when things are difficult — the best is yet to come!

    Watching to see,

    Bill

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  87. Imperishable by

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    by Caleb Yetton

    “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” 1 Peter 1: 3-5

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    When I recently read these verses, three words really stuck out to me — Imperishable. Undefiled. Unfading. The idea of these three amazing words can seem so unbelievable in our world of decay and chaos.

    Sadly, everything we can see or touch is fallen. Cars lose their value as soon as they leave the sales lot. Houses fall apart at an unimaginable rate. Health can quickly go downhill. Everything in the world eventually gets covered in dust and rust. I can’t even wear white shirts anymore. Countless times, I have put on a brand new, spotless shirt and no less than five hours later a food stain has found its way onto it. The shirt is forever ruined, soiled by my clumsiness. It seems as if everything is in an all out sprint towards disorder.

    To be honest, I can’t quite wrap my mind around the beautiful truth from the verses above. It is absolutely mind boggling, beyond my simple comprehension and wildest dreams. Christian, this is our hope. All we have seen is the sad state of this busted world, but the Bible (in multiple passages), encourages us to fix our minds and our eyes on the unseen things from above that are truly lovely and pure.

    What God has in store for those He has called, is out of reach of this quickly perishing world. Living with Christ for all eternity will be without death or spoil, unblemished by sin, and it will always stay that way! It won’t even begin to crack or fade. Quite possibly, the most amazing part of it all, is found in verse five. Peter tells us that God Himself is personally protecting and preserving us for that life. Hallelujah!

    Thanking God!

    Caleb

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  88. Resting by

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    by Austin Fredrickson

    We all struggle with something. Life is just not always what we want it to be or need it to be. We tend to want quick answers to our problems. As we struggle, we can find ourselves asking God, “What do you want me to do?”

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    If I’m not careful, I can get pretty frustrated with this question in my own life. I find myself thinking that everything would be a whole lot easier if God would just speak up and tell me exactly what He wanted me to do. Then I wouldn’t have to wonder and all my “issues” would become a lot easier, right?

    Lately, I’ve had a lot of questions regarding my family: Should we sell our house? Should we get a new car for when our next baby is born? Should we move a little further north to be closer to my full-time job? What should we do for our kid’s education? The list goes on and on.

    In all of this questioning and planning, Proverbs 16 has brought me a tremendous amount of comfort. Specifically, Proverbs 16:9 says, “The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps.” When I read this I thought “Praise God!”. Whatever I plan, whatever decisions I make (both good and bad), I can rest in knowing that God is the one establishing my steps and leading me in the right direction.

    This is an amazing gift from our Father and a tremendous comfort for our anxiety. God will establish our steps even as we plan our way. We can rest a little easier, knowing God has good plans for us and He is the one that lays out the path before us.

    Resting Easy,

    Austin

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  89. Bad Shepherds, Bad Disciplers by

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    by Josh Whitney

    We all know what Jesus’ final marching orders to His disciples were before He ascended; “Go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them, and teaching them to observe all that I commanded you.” (Matthew 28:19,20) If we claim to be a follower of Jesus, those are our marching orders, too. Basically, do you love Jesus? Then go, make disciples!

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    The question of who our disciple is varies from person to person. For some, it is clear. Make disciples of your children or your Small Group. But, for others, it might be making disciples of your co-workers, neighbors, or friends at church. Regardless, as Christians, we are all called to make disciples.

    Recently, I read a fascinating verse in Zechariah. I thought it gave additional insight into making disciples. Zechariah was prophesying that (because Israel had rejected the good shepherd), they were going to get a bad shepherd. It was fascinating to see the marks of a bad shepherd. “For behold, I am going to raise up a shepherd in the land who will not care for the perishing, seek the scattered, heal the broken, or sustain the one standing, but will devour the flesh of the fat sheep and tear off their hoofs.” (Zechariah 11:16)

    What is the connection between making disciples and being a good shepherd? Both have a large aspect of providing spiritual care for someone.

    Read verse 16 again. A good shepherd cares for and seeks the lost. They help the hurting. But, they also strengthen the healthy. What a helpful filter that is for us as potential disciple makers! Are we seeking after the lost around us? Are we helping the hurting people in our world? Do we spend time strengthening the strong? Each one of us tends to view one of these areas as the most important. God calls us to all three!

    Shepherding,

    Josh

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  90. Ladies Saturday Morning Service Project (Draper) by

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    OCC

    On Saturday, November 7, at 9:00 a.m., we’re going to be assembling Operation Christmas Child Boxes at the Draper location and could use your help! Please come and help us reach our goal of assembling 200 boxes to send to children across the world to be able to give them gifts and tell them about Jesus.

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    Boxes will be provided but we need YOU to help fill them up! Just go to trc.life/draperocc and you’ll see an incredible selection of fun and practical gift ideas for these needy children. You can “register”; for what you’d like to donate and then you can drop off your donations any Sunday up until November 1, at the Draper Church location. You can also bring them on the morning of the service project. We’re asking for a $10 donation to cover the cost of shipping the boxes and helping to fill them with any items not donated. If you have questions, please feel free to contact Marty Weed.

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  91. Waiting by

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    by Tony D'Amico

    “Be strong, and let your heart take courage, all you who wait for the Lord!” Psalm 31:24 (ESV)

    We all experience times in our lives when we have to wait for something. There are times that are simply mundane, like waiting in line at the grocery store or at the bank. It could be waiting for something exciting, like going on a trip to Disneyland or a long awaited vacation to Europe. Or, it could be waiting for things that are not so exciting, like hearing back about a job interview or waiting to hear about medical test results.

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    All of these types of situations can lend themselves to a variety of emotions — everything from anxiety, to joy, to stress, to peace, to frustration. The list goes on and on. In our “instant-social-media-information-driven-world”, it is very hard to have patience when it comes to waiting for anything. We want everything instantly and if it takes time, it is hard for us!

    But, what does God have to say about that? Over and over you read the word “wait” in the Bible. Wait for the Lord. Those two Psalms you just read above are a great example of how we should be waiting on the Lord for answers! When we pray, answers can take time. Or, the answers might not be the ones we want. Both of these options go against our flesh; we want our answers fast and made to order.

    God tells us that we need to be strong and let our hearts take courage. The Lord gives us the things we need at the right time and in the right way. This type of waiting means we need to actively look to Him with complete trust and dependency. This type of trust will give us the ability to be strong and courageous!

    Taking Heart

    Tony

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  92. Rocktoberfest at The Rock Church! by

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    Rocktober Fest

    What’s all this you’re hearing about Rocktoberfest at The Rock Church? Maybe you received a flyer, maybe a friend told you? maybe a banner in front of the church? No matter how you heard about it, we’re glad you did.

    Who wants to spend Halloween “just trick-or-treating” (you only get candy that way) when you can have WAY more fun joining us at one of our Rocktoberfest Celebrations! We’ll have games, activities, delicious food (candy and the “real food”) and people just waiting to tell you they’re glad you came. No matter which Rocktoberfest location you attend, you’re going to have a fantastic time — guaranteed!

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    Whether you’re going to be in Draper, Salt Lake City or Provo, there is a Rocktoberfest Celebration waiting for you! Grab the kids and come check us out — we’re looking forward to meeting you.

    We’d like to tell you a little more about what we have planned for each location:

    Draper
    At our Draper location (11630 S 700 E) on October 31 from 1:00 – 5:00 p.m., we’re planning on lots of fun games/prizes, balloons, face painting, karaoke, a bouncy house, live music and more! Hungry? We’ve got you covered…we’ll not only have cotton candy and popcorn, we’ll have food trucks for you to pick from — Waffle Love (1-2:00 pm only), Fry Gourmet and others. You’re not going to want to miss this action-packed afternoon! Join us for this fun-filled fall activity and plan on bringing the whole family! We’d love to have you come.

    Salt Lake City
    At our Salt Lake City location (195 W 2100 S) on October 31 from 6:30 – 9:00 p.m., there will be lots of fun with games/prizes, balloons, candy stations, a bouncy house, and more! Hungry? We’ve got you covered … we’ll not only have lots of candy, we’ll also have food trucks for your bigger appetites. Dress up your little Princesses and Superheroes (adults are welcome to dress up, too)!

    Provo
    At our Provo location (241 W Center Street) on October 31 from 2:00 – 5:00 p.m., we will have lots of kid-friendly, creative games with prizes galore! There will be a special photo booth so all your social media friends can enjoy your costumes.

    If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact our church office!

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  93. Galatians Series by

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    Galatians Series

    The Book of Galatians is one of the Apostle Paul’s most impassioned and eloquent letters. It warns Christians about the dangers of both legalism and lawlessness, calling Believers to live in the freedom of a gospel-shaped life.

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    Throughout this book we will encounter the promises, warnings, and gospel declarations that will help us find true liberty in our identity as God’s adopted children. Join us at The Rock Church for a ten-part series at all of our locations. We’ll discover the freedom found in the statement, “salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, because of Christ alone”. Series starts at all locations on the weekend of October 2-4.

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  94. God Breathed by

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    by Billy Johnson

    “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17

    We just finished our study through the Book of Jonah; I think the story of Jonah has become one of the most challenging stories in the Bible to believe. Even back in 1794, Thomas Paine, author of “The Age of Reason” says that the book of Jonah is “…A fit story for ridicule if it was written to be believed — or of laughter if it was intended to try what credulity could swallow, for if it could swallow Jonah and the whale it could swallow anything.”

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    Stories like these (the unbelievable ones): Noah’s Ark, David and Goliath, Jonah and the Great Fish — these stories are so easily thought of as kid’s stories (and then they become hard to believe). Satan has done such a good job of making some of God’s most incredible miracles seem like fairy tales.

    The story of Noah’s Ark is actually an incredibly sad story. Every person Noah and his family ever knew died. Luke 17: 26 says, “Just as it was in the days of Noah, so will it be in the days of the Son of Man. They were eating and drinking and marrying and being given in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all.” That’s really sad!

    Then, there is the story of David and Goliath. It’s not very often that you hear about how David took Goliath’s sword and cut Goliath’s head off with it (after he toppled him with the stone).

    We need to remember that these stories aren’t just in our Bibles so that the kids have something to color while we learn about the “real meat” in the grown up room. They are in our Bibles to display the goodness and majesty of God, to show that only He has supernatural authority over the universe. They’re in our Bibles to teach, reprove, correct, and train us in righteousness, so that we may be complete and equipped for every good work. We need to believe the Bible and look at it as a historically accurate book, a library of events that really happened. Because they did.

    Believing,

    Billy

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  95. Made Complete by

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    by Steve McInroy

    By God’s grace and because of Jesus’ death and resurrection, I am being made complete. I love that truth.

    All of my children are now 21 years old (and older), living their adult lives and following the Lord for themselves. My role as a father looks very different now from the days of changing diapers, coaching flag football, giving white knuckle driving lessons, and doing my best to instill godly principles. Those are sweet memories that I will always cherish.

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    But, I also realize I am not done being a father. Indeed, God has even more for me now as the father of adult children and as a granddad. He is still teaching and helping me day in and day out, as I pray for the precious lives of my children and continue to speak into their lives. I am still very much a father.

    This reminds me of how God the Father promises to complete what He started in us. Philippians 1:6 says, “Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”

    God will continually pour His redemptive and regenerative work into our lives right up until the moment we leave this life and join Him in the next. He completes us. He never gives up on us. The Apostle Paul said it so well in his final words to the church in Corinth. “Finally brethren, rejoice, be made complete, be comforted, be like-minded, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.” 2 Corinthians 13:11

    On the road to completion!

    Mac

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  96. Growing Faith, Increasing Love by

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    by Steele Croswhite

    “We ought always to thank God for you, brothers and sisters, and rightly so, because your faith is growing more and more, and the love all of you have for one another is increasing.” 2 Thessalonians 1:3

    Recently, I had the absolute privilege of going on our “Core Retreat” with our SLC location. That time together was tremendous. For two nights and three days nearly 100 people gathered in the mountains for a time of: connecting with each other, worshipping together, learning together, hiking together, playing paint ball together, and even watching the kiddos brave a huge “slip-n-side” down the mountain side.

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    It’s hard to measure the value of that retreat. In some ways, only God knows how precious those times are together. In our culture today, we tend to measure success with immediate results and attainable goals. Though there is a place for those types of measurements, it’s hard to apply worldly measures to the Kingdom of God.

    I appreciate how this verse speaks to our “growing faith” and “increasing love for one another” because these qualities are never fully “achieved”. As a Church, our faith and love is never complete. It’s always changing with the maturity of our own hearts.

    Our “success” is not found in “numbers” or “quotas”, but rather, in a word aptly spoken, or a prayer offered, or through a light-hearted conversation. In the case of our “Core retreat” our “success” was found through paintball games, climbing walls, and s’mores roasted over a fire.

    Our goal is growing faith and increasing love. I am thankful for our Church family, and I am thankful that my “success” is not achieved in simply a day, or in a single event, but in a lifetime.

    Growing,

    Steele

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  97. Garage Sales for Jesus by

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    by Josh Whitney

    “Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity.” Colossians 4:5

    A couple months ago, Krista and I decided we should have a garage sale. The kids had outgrown some of their old clothes and toys and, after moving last year, we decided there were a number of things around the house we didn’t need any more.

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    We spent a portion of the week leading up to the garage sale cleaning, organizing and “de-junking” our house. Friday night after church, we moved a bunch of stuff to the garage. On Saturday morning, we put up our signs and waited. Coincidentally, two of our nearby neighbors also had garage sales that day. My prayer that morning was that God would give us some gospel opportunities. Krista mentioned that one of our kids prayed that at breakfast, too.

    God answered our prayers. We were encouraged. One, we were able to meet multiple neighbors we hadn’t met yet. A number of them stopped by and we had long conversations with them in our garage. Krista even had a chance to invite one of them to church. Two, I had a chance to share the gospel. A friendly realtor and I had a long conversation about Jesus. I gave him a tract and invited him to church, too. I even sold him some old movies. Three, we had a number of lengthy conversations with neighbors we had already met, mainly just getting to know each other better — that was great. Four, we met a different neighbor during the garage sale who ended up hiring our older kids to weed her flowerbed. And five, we made some money!

    Life can be full of gospel opportunities if we are praying and prepared!

    Josh

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  98. Musings on Madison by

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    Married, Musings on Madison

    You may have read of the recent news stories concerning the Ashley Madison website. Sadly, it is a dating website that targets married people who are looking to have an affair. Recently, hackers broke into the website’s servers and stole their information. Now, millions of people (who were either openly or secret looking to have an affair) have been exposed.

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    I recently read news stories about the website’s data. People have analyzed the “profiles” and determined that many of them were falsified. Apparently, “profiles” were created by some workers at the company to get more traffic.

    Imagine if you could go back in time and a married friend told you they wanted to use that website’s evil services to have an affair. You stopped them and said, “Wait, no, don’t! Every person who uses that website will someday be exposed. Religious and political leaders will be embarrassed when those lists go public. Your sin would be published on websites across the internet.” That would stop most people from using Ashley Madison.

    But, let’s say that didn’t stop your stubborn, married friend; they still wanted to use the website. So, you said, “Ok, listen to me. Not only will your sins be publicly exposed someday, but many of the profiles on that website were fake. They weren’t even real!” If the first warning didn’t stop them, you would hope the second warning would.

    Do you realize that this is the lesson for every sin our heart craves? Ultimately, all of our sins (secret and public) will be exposed. Sin is fake and it never satisfies long-term.

    Jesus said in Luke 12:2, “Nothing is covered up that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. Therefore whatever you have said in the dark shall be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in private rooms shall be proclaimed on the housetops.”

    All sin will be exposed!

    Jesus also said in John 10:10,”The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”

    Again, you have to remember that sin is fake. It will never satisfy long-term. The only real satisfaction is found in God. Whatever your poison of choice, remember, it will all be exposed someday. Sin never satisfies.

    Josh

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  99. Fully Engaged by

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    by Bill Young[/caption]

    “Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.” (1 Corinthians 15:58 NIV)

    Can you believe it — summer is over and the fall is already upon us?! This time of year always brings with it new and exciting opportunities to labor hard for Jesus (as well as Broncos football games)!

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    As you know, we are on world mission at our church! We want to win the world — one life at a time, one world in our lifetime. In 2015 alone, we have already recorded the names of 81 people who have gotten saved and turned their lives over to Jesus Christ and 40 people who have been baptized through the ministry of The Rock. God is at work!

    Not only that, but the Draper location has grown by 26 percent since opening the doors to our new building last November — amazing! We trusted God together, and many have given sacrificially to our ROOTS 2.0 Capital Campaign. We believed that a new building would give us stability, legitimacy and opportunity like never before — and it has.

    In fact, just recently, I had the opportunity to lead two different people to Christ right in my living room. Both of these people had been attending the Draper location and both wanted to meet with me. They basically told me the same thing: “Something is missing in my life, and I think it has to do with Jesus.” I gladly shared with them about the amazing truth of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. In tears, they repented and turned their lives over to Jesus.

    What a blessing to be in Utah and have the opportunities we have! I’m more excited than ever about the future of The Rock and our mission to Win the Lost, Build the Believer and Send the Sanctified. Without question, your generous, sacrificial gifts and service have made this possible — I can’t thank you enough. Lives are different because you have been fully engaged. People are visiting church, hearing the gospel, getting saved and baptized because so many of you have given so much, so faithfully. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart.

    Have a wonderful week serving the Lord!

    Fully engaged,

    Bill

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  100. Parenting Workshop by

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    It’s difficult to raise children who will be equipped to face the world that’s waiting for them when they’re grown. How do we prepare them? How do we get them from infancy to adulthood and give them what they need to succeed in the life before them?

    This world thinks it has the answers, but it doesn’t. What we need are parents filled with faith, standing ready to love and train their children, and having Biblical standards to live by. What does that practically look like? You probably have a lot of questions that you’d like to ask. We’d like to help give you some answers. Please join us on September 25 & 26, as we hear from Steve Nelson (pastor and father of eight children, and author of the book Premeditated Parenting) and his wife, Kathleen. They will share Biblical principals and practicals to successfully love and raise children to be warriors for Christ..

    Friday 7- 9:00 p.m., Saturday: 9- 3:00 p.m. (a light breakfast will be served, lunch will be on your own) at our Draper location (11630 S 700 E). Childcare will be provided. The cost is only $10.00 per couple and $5.00 per single. Questions? Contact, Brent Kendall.

    Register Today!

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  101. Forsaken Hope by

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    by Austin Fredrickson

    Many of us have heard it said (or have said it ourselves): “My relationship with the Lord feels kind of dry.” Or maybe something like this: “I just feel stagnant in my faith.” Or “I’m not getting much out of my quiet times lately.” This can happen to any of us. We feel like we are just going through the motions. Something that at one point felt so exciting and fun now just seems like an act or something you do because you feel like you have to.

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    Recently, this verse in Jonah, Chapter 2 stuck out to me: “Those who pay regard to vain idols forsake their hope of steadfast love.” Jonah was in a pretty bad place. Probably the lowest point of his life and he called out to the Lord and remembered His steadfast love.

    Maybe you’re going through a hard time right now? Maybe you’re going through a “dry” season and it feels like your hope is waning? Whatever it is, do not forsake your hope in His steadfast love! When God seems far away, do not lose hope. When you don’t feel like God cares, don’t believe it! Jonah thought he could outrun God; but God was near to him the whole time. When Jonah was in the most awful circumstances of his life, God was near!

    The reason we keep reading our Bibles when we don’t feel motivated, the reason we pray without ceasing when God doesn’t seem to answer, and the reason we keep going to church when we’d rather be doing something else is because we have hope in God’s steadfast love! Don’t forsake that hope, Christian. God is near, He hears your prayers and He will never leave you nor forsake you.

    In His Hope,

    Austin

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  102. Europe Mission Trip Application by

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    United 2016

    How would you like to go to Europe? How would you like to help change the world for Jesus? If your answer is “yes” to either question, you’re not alone! A short-term mission trip is being planned for Spring 2016 (tentative dates are May 25 – June 6). We’d love to have you prayerfully consider joining us for this life changing opportunity! We’re trusting God to lead four teams of people to four different cities in Europe (cities yet to be determined) partnering with our European sister ministries. There will be more details coming as people commit to going. Each person is responsible to raise his or her own support estimated at $2500 – $3000 per person. Applications are now available online at trc.life/1NahRNK. There is a $50 application fee due when applying and a $300 deposit due Oct 31 (this is non-refundable and goes toward the overall cost of the trip). Questions? Contact Steve McInroy.

    U16 Application

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  103. Unheard of Love by

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    by Bryan Edwards

    Before I became a Christian, I had plenty of non-Christian friends who loved me. But, it was nothing like the love, support and compassion I received from my friends who were Believers. Over time, those Christian men and women had a tremendous impact on me. Their friendships changed my life. Jesus was the real game changer (of course), but those Christians who loved me, poured their lives into me, and were so patient with me, truly impacted me. That kind of love was unheard of to me. I’ll never be the same because of it.

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    Every time I read John 13:35 in my Bible, I’m reminded about how grateful I am for those people who loved a messy dude like me. “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, by your love for one another.” I experienced what that verse looked like in action. I witnessed first hand what a real disciple of Jesus looked like. Their love towards me was unlike anything I’d ever seen.

    The same is true for you, friend. The love you show towards others truly demonstrates the impact that Jesus’ love has had on you. I understand that sometimes it’s very difficult to love people. Trust me, if there was ever a reason not to love somebody, I’ve met the requirement. But, isn’t that what makes the Gospel such Good News? Christ came to save messy, unlovable, sinners — that’s you and me! We all have reasons why Christ shouldn’t love us. Yet, He demonstrated love, mercy and grace towards us instead.

    Have you been on the receiving end of an amazing display of love and compassion? Thank God for those people! Do you love others in ways that show the world you are His? I can assure you, it will have an amazing impact on them.
    I know I’m grateful for the love that others have poured onto me.

    Eternally grateful!

    Bryan

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  104. Seek in Faith by

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    by Tony D'Amico

    “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all of his ways.” James 1:5-8 ESV

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    How often we run up against opposition or trials in our lives and try to handle them on our own. It’s easy to do because we love to fix our own problems and help others fix theirs. But, we need to remember that we should not rely on our own wisdom in doing this; we need the wisdom of God. When we’re faced with troubles in our lives, He will help us generously, without hesitation.

    These verses remind us that when we ask God for wisdom, when we are looking for spiritual insight, we need to be in faith (Hebrews 11:1). We must believe that He loves us, that He cares for us, and that nothing is impossible for Him! He understands what we are going through and wants to help us in our pain, our questions, our problems, our lack of wisdom. God loves when we come to Him with a teachable attitude. Relying on God, in faith, is what gives us stability in difficult times.

    James also reminds us not to doubt God. If we doubt His goodness and His promises, then our foundation becomes very unstable. One minute our life is like a calm sea and we rest in His promises; then, when the storm comes, we feel like God has completely left and forgotten us. We cannot swing back and forth between trusting in God and then trusting in our own abilities. We become double-minded and that makes us like the wave James was speaking of. God does not give insight to such people.

    So, how do we obtain wisdom? We obtain it when we are in the Word and in prayer. God’s wisdom is available to all and is given very generously to those who ask! There is only one condition — we ask in FAITH and not in DOUBT. Christian, next time you are seeking wisdom in a trial, go to our King in faith and He will reward you with the wisdom you are seeking.

    Trusting in His goodness,

    Tony

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  105. Worship 2015 by

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    Worship 2015

    Mark your calendars now for a night of sweet worship and fellowship at Standing Together’s WORSHIP 2015! Join us on the south lawn of the Utah State Capital Grounds on Sunday, August 9 (5:00 – 8:00 p.m.). Bring lawn chairs, blankets and a picnic dinner and enjoy the worship music of: The Porter Family Band, Aaron Gillespie and Extol. The evening is FREE and we’d love to have you join us. Questions? Contact Standing Together or call 801.474.1363.

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  106. Europe Mission Trip 2016 Info Meeting by

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    The Rock Church is in the beginning stages of planning another short-term mission trip in the spring of 2016 (to partner with and serve our sister churches in Europe). Mission trips change the lives of all those involved and we’d love you to be a part of this one. We will have an information meeting Thursday, August 6, 7:00 p.m. at our Draper location to help share our plans and hopefully answer many of your questions. Won’t you prayerfully consider participating in what God is doing through our Great Commission Europe ministries by supporting this trip either financially and/or by actually joining us on this exciting opportunity? Questions? Contact Steve McInroy.

    For more information on our previous mission trips to Europe, please visit www.experiencetherock.com/europe.

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  107. Heavenly Upgrade by

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    by Bill Young

    Colossians 3:1-2 “…set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” (NIV)

    Thinking about and teaching on the reality of Heaven last month, was an amazing blessing to me. It reminded me of a flight I had out of Dulles Airport in Washington, D.C. a few years ago. The flight was full and the gate agent asked if anyone was willing to take a “bump” because they were overbooked. My friend and I had nothing better to do, so we volunteered. We got hotel and meal vouchers, were booked for the next day’s flight and were on our way.

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    The next day, as we boarded the new Boeing 777, we were pleasantly surprised to find that we had been upgraded to First Class! We were offered champagne as we were escorted to our new, leather (reclining) seats with private television sets. We ate salmon on real china with real silverware. We were treated like royalty. I almost felt bad for the “coach” passengers eating their peanuts and drinking their one cup of soda. Almost.

    Heaven is going to be like an unbelievable “upgrade” to First Class from Coach! The idea of leaving this earth to go to a place called Paradise, has given me a new perspective on what I have to look forward to. I’m excited about Heaven, not just because of what it will contain, but because of what will be missing: tears, pain, loss, death, sickness! I say, “Come, Lord Jesus!”

    How about you? Are you looking forward to Heaven? Are you excited about the New Heaven and New Earth, about spending time with Jesus and loved ones who are now waiting for you? Have you caught yourself daydreaming about snowboarding, climbing, sailing, feasting or exploring our eternal home? I know I have.

    Do we have a glorious future, no matter how “sick” things get on earth? Absolutely!

    Looking up with you,

    Bill

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  108. GCC Newsletter by

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    The Rock Churches in Utah are blessed to be a associated relationally with of a larger family of churches around the country and world. As believers in Jesus Christ we have been forgiven and transformed by the grace of God.

    The heart of the Great Commission church movement is to tell the message of Jesus Christ to every nation and to build churches that follow the New Testament. Check out the quarterly GCC Newsletter sent from our national office as well as clicking on this link to see the list of churches associated with us through the fellowship of churches in the Great Commission movement. In this addition, there is a column about our West Church plant, give it a read!

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  109. Courage by

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    by Steve McInroy

    Acts 27:25 “Therefore, keep up your courage, men, for I believe God that it will turn out exactly as I have been told.”

    This verse has brought me tremendous comfort.

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    Situations and circumstances can sometimes seem utterly hopeless. I’m not proud to admit that my wife and I have had all too many arguments over the years, especially in those “tumultuous ten” first years of marriage (as I have lovingly named them). We did not have a saving faith in Christ in those days and our hope was dependent upon ourselves and on who we thought was right. This often led to to hurt feelings, unforgiving hearts, and pointless arguments that lasted for days or even weeks on end. I can remember feeling hopeless, even desperate — ready to give up.

    In some ways, I think my hopelessness was similar to the scene from the above verse in Acts. The Apostle Paul was in a storm at sea with 275 others; they were at death’s door. They were a hodgepodge group of prisoners and sailors without hope or a clue of what to do. Paul took the point because he had clearly heard from God. He just flat out said he believed in God and that it would turn out exactly as he had been told. I love that!

    Christian, you and I can respond with the same confidence in our world today. We must. Lately, I have been pursuing God, asking Him to examine my heart concerning some of the tough issues I encounter with people. At times, I can feel like a passenger on this ship of life, headed for impending doom. Occasionally, I can simply want to abandon ship, and retreat into my own little cocoon. Whether I am disagreeing with my wife or friends, or engaged in conversations with people with completely different views, faiths, or opinions as mine, I can always cling to the promises of God in times of trouble.

    If you know God, then you have heard from God; like the Apostle Paul, we can take up our courage and believe Him that it will turn out exactly as we have been told. Because all the promises of God are “yes” in Christ Jesus, we can always count on God to do what He says He’s going to do! He never goes back on His promises. Be sure to tell everyone you know that our hope rests in Christ!

    Riding out the storm,

    Mac

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  110. Shield by

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    by Steele Croswhite

    “The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my savior; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection. He is my shield, the power that saves me, and my place of safety.” Psalm 18:2

    Just a few days ago, these verses came alive to me in a whole new way. As I write this, I am enjoying some time away with my family near Seattle, Washington. The house where my wife grew up has become somewhat of a second home to us; a place where we can watch movies, go boating on the lake and go on extended runs in the surrounding wilderness.

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    It was during one of these runs where these verses came alive. As I was running in the thick of the forest (across the street from my in—law’s home), I came face—to—face with a wild black bear! I cannot remember a time when I was so suddenly overwhelmed with paralyzing fear. Growing up in Utah, I have seen my fair share of wild life; but I have NEVER run INTO a bear.

    The bear was less than 20 feet away from me and I knew it saw me. In my mind, I prayed that the Lord would be a shield around me and protect my life as I started to quietly back away. The bear watched me move until I was no longer in sight and than I ran as fast as I could in the opposite direction, towards the house.

    Once back home, I shared my whole story to a very captive audience. I joked with them that it would be just like me to be mauled by a bear on vacation. But, it also gave me the opportunity to share the truth of these verses: God did indeed protect me and was, in fact, a shield around me.

    This week, it is unlikely that any of you will come upon a bear face to face — but, it is highly likely that you will need the Lord. Whatever the circumstances may be, cry out to Him! He is our protection and our shield against the world, the flesh, the devil… and even bears!

    Protected,

    Steele

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  111. Faithful and Faithless by

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    by Josh Whitney

    The Book of Acts (Chapter 12), shows us how faithful and faithless people respond to the storms and trials of life. If you remember in Acts, the early church in Jerusalem was growing like a weed. About that same time, King Herod decided to persecute the church. First, he murdered James and then he arrested Peter. He most likely planned to kill Peter, too. I love Acts 12:5, “So Peter was kept in prison, but earnest prayer for him was made to God by the church.”

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    Imagine the first century church in Jerusalem. One of their pastors had just been killed and another pastor had been arrested. It said the church made earnest prayer for Peter. That was the response of a faithful person. A major, discouraging trial hit the church and they started earnestly praying. When life hits you with a big, discouraging trial, do you pray? What is your first reaction?

    Well, you know what happened. Peter was sleeping between two guards, bound in chains with other guards at the locked door. Doesn’t matter! God answered their prayers and sent an angel in to rescue Peter. He miraculously led Peter to freedom!

    The next morning, when the guards woke up, it says there was no small disturbance. That’s an understatement. Multiple guards with public enemy number one chained between them — and he escapes?! Ludicrous! When King Herod heard about that, he questioned the guards himself and had them executed. That was the response of a faithless person. “There is no way Peter escaped miraculously! These guards released him and they are lying to me, so they must die.”

    People of faith pray when life hits them with storms and trials. Faithless people refuse to see God’s hand in life and so they react differently.

    Praying,

    Josh

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  112. Dwelling EP Release and Art Show by

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    We’d love to have you join us on July 17 (6:30 p.m.), at our Provo location (244 W 100 S), for a night of music, art and food! The Rock Music is releasing a new EP entitled Dwelling. Music is by Heartless Breakers and Nicholas D’Amico (TRM band). Art will not only be on display by Briton Groesbeck and Tony D’Amico, but it will also be available to purchase! This is a fabulous opportunity to invite your friends and family to – they can hear great music, see amazing art and eat delicious food. Admission is FREE. What a great way to spend a Friday night!

    Questions? Please contact Caleb Yetton (caleb@experiencetherock.com).

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  113. The Rock Church response to the SCOTUS decision to legalize gay marriage by

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    Statement on Marriage

    Dear Rock Church Member,

    As you probably know, the Supreme Court Of The United Sates (SCOTUS), in a landmark decision today, ruled in favor of legalizing gay marriage. As your pastors, we felt it would be appropriate to let you know our response to this ruling. FYI, much of this reply reflects the response that the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) sent out today.

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    The fact is, that nothing in the Supreme Court’s Obergefell v. Hodges opinion, changes the truth about marriage. What has changed is the legal definition of marriage. It is now at variance with orthodox, Biblical faith, as it has been affirmed across the centuries and as it is embraced today by nearly two billion Christians in every nation on earth.

    At The Rock Church, we believe and affirm that God designed marriage for humanity. As first described in Genesis and later affirmed by Jesus, marriage is a God-ordained, covenant relationship between one man and one woman. This lifelong, sexually exclusive relationship, brings children into the world and thus sustains the stewardship of the earth. Biblical marriage — marked by faithfulness, sacrificial love and joy — beautifully displays the relationship between God and His people.

    While commentators, politicians and judges may revise their understanding of marriage in response to shifting societal trends, followers of Jesus should embrace His clear vision of marriage found in Matthew 19:4-6:

    “Haven’t you read,” Jesus replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

    In its role as a moral teacher, the law now misleads Americans about the true nature of marriage. We, as Evangelicals and other followers of the Bible, have a heightened opportunity to demonstrate the attractiveness of loving Christian marriages and families. We should renew our commitment to the sacrificial love and covenantal faithfulness to which Jesus calls all husbands and wives.

    As witnesses to the truth, evangelical Christians should be loving, kind, gracious, and compassionate to those who do not share their views on marriage. Like Jesus, we love sinners, but not the sin. We should continue to preach a salvation purchased for ALL sinners (every human being) through faith in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Sadly, we are convinced that those who continue to embrace historic Biblical teaching on marriage, will increasingly need to appeal to the First Amendment protection not just for abstract belief, but for the practice of our faith. May God grant us courage and grace to face the challenges that lay ahead of us.

    Sincerely,
    The Pastors of The Rock Church

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  114. Undercover Jesus by

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    by Bill Young

    “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.” (Hebrews 4:13 NIV)

    Have you ever watched the show “Undercover Boss”? I’ve seen it a few times and it always makes me fear God. Let me tell you why.

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    The basic premise of the show is typically a big shot CEO of some major corporation gets a bad make up job and leaves his fancy, glorious, corporate office to work alongside the regular blue collar working man or woman within his company. Of course, the hourly employee has no idea he is now working with the most powerful person in his organization — someone who has the power to bless or fire them… today!
    It makes me cringe when I hear or see one of the workers criticize the boss, or exhibit clear signs of ineptitude or laziness. It also makes me happy to see an employee who works hard, praises his company and does so with a great attitude. I have these reactions because I know that each person the boss interacts with will be responded to accordingly. I know at the end of the show people will either be reprimanded and corrected or praised and rewarded.

    This reminds me that we should also have a healthy fear of the Lord. Why? Because the Bible tells us over and over that God is with us and He will respond to what we do while we live in His world. It says in 2 Corinthians 5:10, “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.”

    What if we truly believed God was right next to us every minute of every day and someday we’ll give an account to Him? Would our lives be different? I think mine would.

    Let’s live today in the reality that we serve a God who is present with us and will respond to us. We serve an Undercover Jesus!

    Fearing our Heavenly Boss with you,

    Bill

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  115. Did God Really Say? by

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    The first lie recorded in human history was one of doubting God’s goodness. The devil twisted what God said, and then used it to attack Mankind. Unfortunately, we bought into the lie and the rest is history. Fast forward to today. Our culture still believes the lie. The attack on Truth, the Bible, has never been more malicious. Ideas such as, “How can you believe the Bible when it blatantly promotes slavery and degrades women?” or “Look at how much murder, death and evil Christianity is responsible for.” or “The Bible is a homophobic book that threatens to send everyone to hell who doesn’t agree with it.” With people saying and believing things like this, it seems like Christianity has its back up against the wall. Or does it? Are these statements actually true? Or have people been deceived in this 140 character Social Media generation?

    Join us at The Rock Church starting June 26, as we take a brutally honest look into these ideas and misconceptions. We’ll go back to the Source to see for ourselves… “Did God Really Say?”

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  116. Our Father by

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    by Caleb Yetton

    “But now, O Lord, you are our Father; we are the clay, and you are our potter; we are all the work of your hand.” Isaiah 64:8

    As we approach Father’s Day, I was reminded of how much I love being a Dad. It has also made me think of what an amazing Father we have in our God.

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    I adore my kids. Sometimes the love I have for my sons is unfathomable to me. I love to be with them. I love to wrestle with them and tickle them. I love to hear my oldest son tell his silly stories, and I just smile watching my youngest son stumble around like a drunken sailor as he learns to walk. They bring me tremendous joy! And then to think that the love that God has for me is even greater than the love I have for my boys, is just too much to handle. Zechariah 2:8 says that we are the apple of God’s eye — His most precious possession. What an incredible thing!

    What parent doesn’t love seeing the delight a favorite food or activity brings to a toddler? James 1:17 says, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father.” and Matthew 7:11 says, “So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask him.”

    Unfortunately, not everyone we know has had a good example of an earthly father in their lives. But, we do have the perfect Father in God. Our Father leads us (Psalm 23), teaches us (Isaiah 28:26), trains us (Proverbs 3:12), and He holds us (Isaiah 41:13).

    I am SO thankful for my good Father in heaven,

    Caleb

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  117. Grow by

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    by Bryan Edwards

    When you want to become a better basketball player, what do you do? You buy the best shoes, you start drinking Gatorade, and you work on your jump shot in your backyard every day. You put in the work and time needed to improve and grow!

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    The Bible tell us to never stop being a learner — that “an intelligent heart acquires knowledge” and 2 Peter 3:18 says we are to “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” I’d like to say that most of the time, I feel like I’m growing. I love to read and study, I absolutely love to be absorbed in the Word of God. Give me my Bible, a stack of books, a gallon of coffee, and I’m set!

    But there are also days when I feel like my quiet time was no more exciting than folding the laundry or brushing my teeth. Those days are good reminders for me to check and see if there is anything in my life that is trying to take over the joy I have in my Savior. Maybe it’s work, stress, relationships, or The Family Feud t.v. marathon that I haven’t been able to turn off? Or maybe I’m just not as dedicated and faithful as I was the day before?

    Christian, don’t stop being a learner; keep growing! Make a plan to faithfully pursue and grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ. Invest the time in fellowship, prayer, and the Word. I assure you, God will continue to grow you more and more into the image of His Son!

    Growing,

    Bryan

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  118. Make it Right by

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    by Billy Johnson

    “However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.” Ephesians 5:33

    Sometimes it’s human nature to build up a tolerance to discomfort. We have a physical ache or pain and we ignore it or stop worrying about it until we simply forget about it. We don’t actually fix the problem — we just learn how to deal with it. In some cases, ignoring these problems can have life changing effects.

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    It can be easy to treat problems in our marriages the same way. We can be tempted to say, “We’re ok. We’re not yelling at each other tonight, so we’re good enough.” We can see the signs of disunity and ignore them, with hopes that it’ll “just go away”. In reality, we’re not addressing and fixing the problems; we’re just temporarily dealing with them to keep the peace. Men and women, that is NOT the kind of relationship God wants for you and your spouse.

    Men, did you know that God tells you to love your wife like Jesus Christ loves His church? Women, God tells you to respect your husband and let him lead you like the church respects Jesus and follows Him.

    Besides dwelling on the fact that he is made in the image and likeness of God himself, nothing gives your husband more of a sense of value and security than knowing the woman he loves has unconditional respect for him. This should be a wake up call for all of us. We should take this very seriously. God wants you and your spouse to be united.

    Thomas Adams said, “As God by creation made two of one, so again by marriage He made one of two.” If you’ve ever stuck two pieces of duct tape together and tried to get them back apart, you know that once those two pieces become one, they stay one. You will destroy the tape before you get it apart. This is what God wants for our marriages. He wants us to be so committed to one another that no matter what happens, we are impossible to separate. That’s His plan for your marriage.

    If you are going through problems in your marriage, don’t just put a band aide on it and hope the problem goes away. Instead, decide to fix it and trust that God is powerful enough to give you the strength and grace to work it out. If you need help, talk to one of your pastors, deacons, or small group leaders. We want to see you win in your marriage. Men, let’s love our wives like Christ loves the church. Ladies, respect your husbands.

    Working with you,

    Billy

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  119. Little Flocks by

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    by Austin Fredrickson

    As the Apostle Paul was getting on in his years, and was on his last great missionary journey (that would ultimately lead to his death), he called a meeting with the Elders of the Ephesian Church as he was passing through. His main command to them is found in Acts 20:28: “Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God, which he obtained with his own blood.”

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    Though Paul was specifically talking to the leaders of the church, I was struck by the fact that God has given, or will give us all, a Little Flock to shepherd; also, He has equipped us with the tools necessary to do our jobs well.

    Whether you are a pastor or deacon, a mom or dad, a business owner or a manager, leading a Bible study or a team of volunteers… God has given you a flock to oversee and He wants you to do it well! We should not overlook this charge. It was one of Paul’s last directives to his beloved leaders in Ephesus and it was important.

    Christian, what flock has God given you? Are you shepherding it well?

    As always, when God gives us a task, He gives us the means to do it. You may think that in order to shepherd your little flock really well, you need to have a certain skill set or specific abilities or resources. What is really incredible about what Paul is telling these pastors is that they will be built up and ready for this task by the word of God’s grace. Verse 32 says: “And now I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up.”

    Brothers and Sisters, as fellow followers of Christ and partners in the work of God, I encourage you, shepherd your little flock well! Take courage, for God’s grace will build you up for this task. He will empower you to lead well and give you the heart of Christ, who is able to give us everything we need and more! Live in His grace, be rooted in His grace and be built up in His grace.

    Ephesians 1:7- 8 says that the riches of God’s grace have been lavished upon us. That is such a great picture. I think that if we truly understand the depth of that grace and lived in it, we would be able to make a huge impact in the lives of those who are dear to us.

    In His Immeasurable Grace,

    Austin

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  120. Peace & Joy by

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    by Tony D'Amico

    Recently, I was reading through the book of Philippians, and there were some simple verses that really spoke to me.

    “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others as significant as yourself.” (2:3)

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    “Do all things without grumbling or disputing.” (2:14)

    Ugh. It was a good heart check to apply those verses to my life! It would be good for you to apply them to your life. I believe Paul was being specifically intentional in his writing. He wanted the reader (that’s you and me) to evaluate our thoughts and motives. He doesn’t want us to just read the words. He then goes on to say:

    “Rejoice in the Lord always, again I will say, rejoice.” (4:4)

    “And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your mind in Christ Jesus.” (4:7)

    Again, God spoke to me in those verses. The only way to accomplish the second set of verses is by living out the first set of verses. Do you see that?

    It was a painful task to ask myself, “Do I do things that are selfish?” Am I constantly saying, “I, Me or My” when talking to others? Am I being truly humble? Do I grumble at everything? Do I dispute decisions that are out of my control? I realized that I could definitely use some help!

    Paul told us rejoice in the Lord — he actually said it to us twice (must be important). Then the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard our HEARTS and MINDS.

    It’s something we can all work on in our lives.

    Amen.

    Tony

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  121. Entertain Evil Thoughts by

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    by Josh Whitney

    “Jesus stepped into a boat, crossed over and came to his own town. Some men brought to him a paralyzed man, lying on a mat. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the man, “Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven.” At this, some of the teachers of the law said to themselves, “This fellow is blaspheming!” Knowing their thoughts, Jesus said, “Why do you entertain evil thoughts in your hearts?” Matthew 9:1-4

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    The crowd thought it was blasphemy for a mere man to forgive sins. But Jesus, the God-Man, knew their thoughts and He had the power to forgive sins. He also had the power to back up those words with a miraculous healing. Now, imagine Jesus responding to something you just thought! Freaky!

    I was convicted by verse four. “Why do you entertain evil thoughts in your hearts?” The evil thought these people entertained was unbelief. Jesus said something and they didn’t believe him. How convicting!
    Now, a lustful thought is obviously evil. A proud thought is clearly evil. A bitter thought is evil. But Jesus raises the bar here. He states not taking Him at His word (ie: unbelief) is evil thinking!

    I wonder if unbelief is our “root sin” for many of the more “obvious” sins we struggle with? Jesus was deadly serious about sin. John 5:14 says, “Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you.” Jesus said this to a man who had been paralyzed for 38 years! Do we believe Jesus related to the seriousness of sin? Or do we entertain evil thoughts?

    Jesus said in Matthew 18:15 “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone.” Do we believe Jesus related to correcting each other? Or do we entertain evil thoughts?

    Thinking,

    Josh

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  122. Heaven series (Draper Location Only) by

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    Heaven series (Draper)

    Someone once said, “You can be so heavenly minded, you’re no earthly good.” If that is true, why talk about heaven at all? Who cares anyway? The truth is, nothing could be more relevant than our diligent study of heaven.

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    Why do I say that? Because the Bible contains close to 500 references to heaven! It’s important. Our study will answers questions like: What is heaven like? Why does it matter? What happens the second after I die? What about the Judgment and Resurrection? What about “The New Earth”? No matter where you find yourself in your spiritual journey, a clear Biblical understanding of the truths about heaven can benefit you and help prepare you for an eternity with God in Paradise. Join us at our Draper Location for four weeks of HEAVEN!

    May 24, Part One – Who Cares About Heaven?

    May 31, Part Two – What Happens When I Die?

    June 7, Part Three – What is the Resurrection?

    June 14, Part Four – What is the New Earth?

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  123. Family: United series (West Location Only) by

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    Family United

    Most people start their marriages with the high hopes of “happily ever after”. But, then life gets in the way, and they find that they are not united (or happy) with the person they started out being so close to. Add children to the mix, and suddenly, a home of love and unity seems impossible!

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    Join us for a four week series at our Taylorsville Location, where we’ll look at what the Bible says about marriage and parenting — so our homes can be “Family: United.”

    May 22, (Part One — Marriage)
    Having a great marriage is not second-nature to anyone, yet a failing marriage often takes one or both people by surprise. This message shares four practical steps that can guarantee unity and give hope for a solid future.

    May 29, (Part Two — Marriage)
    Having disunity with your spouse is often compounded by the onslaught of difficult circumstances and bad decisions. When the storms of life hit your marriage, it’s time to move to higher ground — the place of forgiveness.

    June 5, (Part Three — Marriage)
    Do you feel like your marriage is on the brink of destruction, is vulnerable and exposed? If so, it’s time to take cover. This message looks at five preventive steps on how to protect your marriage from the destructive forces assailing it.

    June 12, (Part Four — Parenting)
    Marriage is hard enough, but throw in some children and most people feel completely lost and bewildered. How do you survive and thrive as a parent? The Bible gives clear instructions to guide you through the jungle of parenting.

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  124. Doubts and Disciples by

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    by Steele Croswhite

    “A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.” Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!” Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” John 20:26-29

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    Notice two things about these verses. First,Thomas was still with the disciples in the midst of His doubt and two, the disciples let him doubt.

    Up until this point,Thomas had experienced Jesus in many ways. But, here, he comes to a crisis of faith. His best friends had encountered the living Lord in a new and profound way, and He hadn’t. How many of you are like Thomas? You look at those around you and think, “Why is their experience’ with Jesus so much more real than mine?” Or, “I used to be passionate about following the Lord, but too much has happened, too much has changed. Why are others still on fire and I just want to give up?”

    Now notice in verse 26, “A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them.” The big idea here, is that even in the midst of His real doubt, Thomas was still with the disciples. It was there that Jesus came to end His doubt. He didn’t leave the disciples; he didn’t walk out on the church! He didn’t say, “I’m out of here” and go hang out with the other “doubters” of Jesus and find refuge there. No, he stayed with the disciples. And while he doubted, in their midst, Jesus came. If that is you today, stay here and doubt. Just like He did with Thomas, Jesus WILL COME!

    Notice also, that the disciples allowed Thomas to doubt. Imagine how easy it could have been for them to freeze Tommy out of the club! But, instead, we see the exact opposite. Thomas was WITH the disciples in his doubt. Which means that they loved Him. They embraced him. They no doubt prayed for him. They involved him and they surrounded him, while he wrestled with his “absent” Jesus. The disciples were not thwarted by Thomas’ doubt, because they knew what they had seen. They knew they had met Jesus. They were strong in their faith.

    Here is what this means for us. Christian, when you come upon someone who is wrestling with their faith, I implore you to love the doubters around you. Bring them in. Invite them to witness your life, your love, your God. Do not be thwarted by their doubt. You know the One in whom you have placed your faith. Pray for them, surround them, and allow for them to wait. Whether you are a doubter or a disciple who is completely on fire, Jesus will meet you there.

    Loving the doubters,

    Steele

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  125. Monthly Prayer Request List by

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    Did you know that The Rock Church has a Monthly Prayer Request list? It changes each month and you can easily find the link to access it in the weekly ERock Newsletter (it is also on our web site). You can keep up-to-date with all of the needs/requests of The Rock Church and pray for them either by yourself or with someone else! If you’d rather have a paper copy, pick one up at the Storefront or at the Connections Booth today!

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  126. Are You Ready to Die? by

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    by Steve McInroy

    What would you do if you found out you only had 24 hours to live? Most of us would probably pray like crazy and desperately scramble to tell people that we love them, especially close friends and family.
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    Most likely, we would murmur something like, “I’m not ready to die.” Perhaps, you would want to hug and kiss your spouse or tell your children, and grandchildren, how eternally important it is for them to follow Jesus?! Our priority lists would only have room for the REALLY important things. Activities like balancing our bank accounts, mowing the lawn, getting a new car, planning a dream vacation, playing with the latest technology, eating right and exercising, would become non-issues. They would not begin to fit into our new equation for life.

    Hopefully, God and people would quickly rise to the top of our list. These thoughts may seem unwelcome or even random. But in all reality, the clock is ticking and the Bible clearly states our time here is short. Death is real and headed our way. Psalm 144:4 (NASB) says, “Man is like a mere breath; His days are like a passing shadow.”

    Recently, God has gently reminded me how fragile life is. He has spoken into my heart with this verse — Luke 12:35, “Be dressed in readiness, and keep your lamps lit.” My day-to-day life needs to look more ready than it does, perhaps like what my 24-hour life span might look like?

    May God give us grace to live life to the fullest, so that our lives today will begin to reflect the eternal life we are destined for. Take a moment to think about it; are YOU ready?

    Getting ready,

    Mac

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  127. National Day of Prayer by

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    Please join us as we partner with Standing Together Ministries to call the Church of Utah together on the National Day of Prayer.

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    We wanted to let all of our churches know about a “prayer gathering and a time of worship ” on the night of May 7, from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. The theme for the National Day of Prayer this year is “Lord, Hear Our Cry.” Let us cry out together on behalf of our communities, our state , and our nation!

    When: Thursday, May 7, 7: 00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
    Where: The Rock Church, 11630 S 700 E Draper, Utah 84020

    Hope to see you there!

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  128. Grace by the Brook by

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    by Bill Young

    This past weekend, I taught at a local conference of Christian leaders. I spoke about some amazing lessons God taught me about grace a few years back. The message still warms my heart.

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    This is a Bible story that you’ve probably read, but rarely heard taught at church — I never had. It’s the story of David, of his Mighty men, of agonizing defeat, and ultimately of God’s amazing and surprising grace. The story takes place by a little stream in the desert of Israel called …the “Brook Besor”.

    Don’t feel bad if you’ve never heard of it. Few have.

    But, as author Max Lacado says, “This story deserves shelf space in the library of the ‘well worn’. It’s a story that speaks tender words to tired hearts.” This narrative needs to be told again and again.

    David was returning to the Brook Besor after defeating a group of bandits who had raided and looted his home town and his own family. 1 Samuel 30:21 tells us, “Then David came to the two hundred men who had been too exhausted to follow him and who were left behind at the Besor Ravine. They came out to meet David and the people with him. As David and his men approached, he greeted them.”

    David didn’t berate his tired men. He didn’t belittle them or charge them with being quitters, as some thought he should. No, David extended grace to those tired souls. He “greeted” them, affirmed them and encouraged them. What a wonderful picture of God’s heart of mercy.

    Did you know that God treats you with the same unmerited favor? Some define “grace” as getting what you don’t deserve. The good news today is that sometimes it’s OK to rest. God loves you and is for you. He understands. If you feel weak — take time to rest. If you feel strong, remember, there will be a day when you will need to dip your sore feet in the cool waters of the Brook Besor. And that’s OK.

    By the way, did you know that “Besor” means “Good News”?

    I’ll see you at the Brook!

    Bill

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  129. Community by

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    by Caleb Yetton

    “Behold, how good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity. It is like the precious oil on the head, running on the beard of Aaron, running down on the collar of his robes. It is like the dew of Hermon, which falls on the mountains of Zion! For there the Lord has commanded the blessing, life forevermore.” Psalm 133:1-3

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    For the past ten weeks, our Life Groups in Provo have gone through a study on Christian Community. Through that group study, and other recent events in my life, God has really reminded me just how marvelous it is to be with other believers.

    At times, we can take the Body of Christ for granted. In the “busyness” of life, it can be far too easy to miss opportunities to be together. We can be so preoccupied with life that we miss the true beauty and benefit of Community that happens when we are in the same room together. But, as we can see in the verses above, God’s full blessing for our lives comes when we lovingly, and humbly “do life” with one another.

    The truth of the matter is, being with other believers is God’s intention for our Christian walk; it provides so much good for us. Being connected with God’s people offers protection and accountability in our struggles (James 5:16), and gives us support when we are discouraged or are in need (Galatians 6:2). Community provides endless opportunities to “die to ourselves” by loving and serving our brothers and sisters (John 13:15); this is in fact, our greatest testimony to a lost world — that we are followers of Jesus and are being changed by His truth (John 13:35). Also, being connected to other Christians allows us to be who God made us to be. God has specifically given me my gifts, talents and passions to be just the right “fit” into the rest of the Body around me (1 Corinthians 12).

    Thanking God for you — the Church,

    Caleb

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  130. GCC Newsletter by

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    GCC newsletter

    The Rock Churches in Utah are blessed to be a associated relationally with of a larger family of churches around the country and world. As believers in Jesus Christ we have been forgiven and transformed by the grace of God.

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    The heart of the Great Commission church movement is to tell the message of Jesus Christ to every nation and to build churches that follow the New Testament. Check out the quarterly GCC Newsletter sent from our national office as well as clicking on this link to see the list of churches associated with us through the fellowship of churches in the Great Commission movement.

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  131. Draper Art & Music Show by

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    Are you looking for a fantastic way to spend a Friday night? We’d love to have you join us at 7:00 p.m. on April 17 (11630 S. 700 E.), for the first ever Art & Music Show at the Draper location! Enjoy some awesome music by Terence Hansen, The Isaac Farr Trio and The Rock Music’s Sand, Sea, Sails (Caleb and Kelsea Yetton). There will be art exhibits by several local artists and of course, there will be the Waffle Love food truck, serving up all that is delicious! We’d love to have you be a part of this very special night! Questions? Please contact Sydney Porter.

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  132. Desired by

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    by Bryan Edwards

    Everybody has a desire to feel wanted. It’s one of our greatest motivators. Whether it’s a text message, phone call, email, or someone stopping by the house. It’s always encouraging to be on the receiving end of feeling wanted.

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    Of course there are times where we don’t feel loved, encouraged, or even the feeling of being wanted at all. We can suppress and ignore these feelings. We can let them become something that drives us into fear and depression. Or they can even become something we idolize. Whatever we do with the feeling of being wanted, we can’t ignore them.

    Feeling unwanted is one of the worst feelings. I know, because I’ve been there many, many times. Yet, according to the Bible, it’s a feeling that we don’t have to experience ever again.

    This truth stopped me in my tracks the other day when I came across this verse in the Gospel of John. “Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am.” (John 17:24)

    Did you catch it? Whenever you may feel unloved and unwanted, the truth is that Jesus is praying for you and desires to be with you, Christian. Think about this; the most Important, Valuable, All-Satisfying Person to have ever existed LOVES you. He knows you. He has purchased and redeemed you. His desire is for you to be with Him. That should bring so much joy to our hearts that we jump up out of our chairs!

    The President of the United States doesn’t want to hang out with me. The Queen of England doesn’t pray for me. Michael Jordan and Tom Hanks have no desire for my affection. But the God of the Universe, Jesus Christ, does. His desire right now is for us to be at home with Him, for eternity, in Heaven.

    And that, is the best feeling in the world.

    Feeling desired,

    Bryan

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  133. Redeemed by

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    by Billy Johnson

    The servant girl at the door said to Peter, “You also are not one of this man’s disciples, are you?” He said, “I am not.” John 18:17

    Imagine how disappointed Peter must have been with himself the second those words left his lips.

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    This was Peter’s first denial. He had been hanging out with Jesus for three years, eating and camping, watching Him heal people and cast out demons. He saw Jesus’ Glory on top of that mountain. He was in Jesus’ inner circle. I’m sure Peter would have considered Jesus his best friend. And yet right there, Peter denied Jesus and tried to disassociate himself from Him for the first time since they’d met, three years earlier.

    It’s easy, at least in my mind, to read this from a theological standpoint and think, “Peter, you just denied God.” But all theology aside, imagine your best friend, in that scenario. Maybe it’s your husband or your wife; the person you care about more than anyone else in this world. I want you to put yourself in that situation with them. Imagine refusing to be associated with your wife or completely disowning your husband or your best friend. Think for a second about the turmoil that would have gone on inside of your soul if that had happened to you. Peter denied Jesus like that three times.

    But, Jesus beautifully redeemed Peter and gave him a chance to take it all back. He fed Peter breakfast around a fire (which, I’m sure, was very reminiscent of the night of his denials). Jesus then asked Peter three times, “Peter, do you love me?” and Peter was able to answer His God three times, “You know I love you, Jesus.”

    The beautiful thing about God is that when we sin against Him, if we have a contrite and repentant heart, He forgives us and redeems us! Once He does that, nothing can separate us from His love.

    “A broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.” Psalm 51:17

    Redeemed,

    Billy

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  134. Kingdom Seeking by

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    by Austin Fredrickson

    How many of you can testify that this life can be totally crazy? For a lot of us, there is a ton going on! Between work, school, marriage, kids, grandkids, church, ministry opportunities, friends, family, health issues, home improvements, etc… our time and attention can be spread really thin.

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    When the chaos of life creeps in, I am often tempted to put my relationship with the Lord off to the side for the sake of getting “stuff” done. I can get so caught up in the “doings” of everyday life, that I neglect the one thing that is most important — seeking the Lord and His Kingdom! The words of Jesus have always convicted and encouraged me: “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you.” Matthew 6:33

    I feel like I need this verse tattooed on the inside of my eyelids. This is not merely a suggestion; it is a prescription for our broken hearts. Jesus knows that we are totally lost without Him and what we ultimately need is Him. He owns the world and everything in it — the cattle on a thousand hills. He created the heavens and the earth and has breathed life into our very bones. Whatever we need, He is capable of giving it to us!

    Martin Luther once said, “I have so much business, I cannot get on without spending three hours daily in prayer.” He spent what is equivalent to a third of a typical workday in prayer. It changed the course of Christian history forever, affecting millions of lives.

    When there is no time, when there is too much to do, when we are overwhelmed with life, let us seek the Lord and His kingdom first! I guarantee you, it’s worth it.

    United,

    Austin

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  135. Set Apart by

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    by Tony D'Amico

    Last weekend, I had the opportunity to teach on John, Chapter 17; it is known as the High Priestly Prayer. I was able to take a closer look at not only who Jesus prayed to, but who and what He prayed for, and why He prayed. This chapter is full of rich truths and you can learn a good deal from them.

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    In John 17:17, as Jesus is praying for His disciples, He says, “Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.” Jesus is praying to His Father, God, and is asking that the disciples would not be taken out of the world, but that they would be sanctified while in it.

    The word sanctify means “to set apart”. This is what the effect the Word has on the believer. When we become a Christian, we read the Word, accept the Word and they obey the Word. If we are going to grow in our faith, we have to know the Truth! The Word will expose sin in our lives. Sin will dress up nicely for us, lead us astray and destroy us. God’s Word will shed light into our lives and He will sanctify us by it.
    The process of sanctification is life long and it involves two parts. The first part is having new life in the relationships you have. There needs to be a separation from you being involved in or being influenced by bad character in those around you. You need good, solid relationships in your life. The second part involves us truly learning a new understanding of what is right and wrong (sin), both in our actions, thoughts and words. A new way of thinking.

    Sanctification happens “in the truth”, as we as Christians start to believe, think, and act according to the Word in relation to God, the world and ourselves. This Truth comes from the entire Bible. God’s Word doesn’t conform to some external standard, but it is Truth itself. His Truth is the standard by which everything else should be tested! It is our standard for what is true and right. Jesus didn’t just say, the Word contains truth, He said it IS Truth.

    Are you spending time in the Word daily? Are you letting His truth sink into your soul?

    In Christ —

    Tony

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  136. Join Us Easter Weekend by

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    Join us Easter Weekend at The Rock Church

    EASTER WEEKEND

    What if Easter is more than colored eggs, chocolate candy and bunny rabbits? What if it is much, much more? What if it’s a true story about the life and death of a man named Jesus, who really did rise from the dead?

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    What if Jesus is, indeed, alive right now?

    Join us, at The Rock Church, as we present persuasive proof that Jesus really did rise from the dead! The truth you’ll discover just might change your life!


    EVENTS:

    Community Easter Egg Hunt
    Our first annual Easter Egg Hunt is going to be a blast! Over 7,000 eggs have been stuffed and are ready for Easter Egg Hunt 2015. Rain, or snow, or sunshine — we will be there! How about you? Be there on April 4, on the north lawn of The Rock Church in Draper. The hunt starts promptly at 10:00 a.m., and will be all done within seconds! Everyone is welcome!

    Easter Sunrise Service
    Join us on the north lawn of The Rock Church in Draper at 7:30 – 8:15 a.m., Easter Sunday (April 5) for our second annual Easter Sunrise Service! This will be a very informal time of worship, praise and a short message. We will celebrate the resurrection together as the sun peaks over the Wasatch Mountains. Bring a lawn chair or blanket (no childcare provided). Later that morning, plan on bringing a friend and attending our regular Easter Services at either 9:30 a.m. or 11:15 a.m.


    SERVICES:

    Draper location:

    • Sunday, April 5, Sunrise Service at 7:30 a.m.
    • Sunday, April 5, Services at 9:30 a.m. and 11:15 a.m.

    Provo location

    • Sunday, April 5, Service at 10:00 a.m.

    Salt Lake City location

    • Saturday, April 4, service at 7:00 p.m.

    Taylorsville location:

    • Friday, April 3, service at 7:00 p.m.

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  137. Time Span by

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    By Josh Whitney

    “In the four hundred and eightieth year after the people of Israel came out of the land of Egypt, in the fourth year of Solomon’s reign over Israel, in the month of Ziv, which is the second month, he began to build the house of the Lord.” 1 Kings 6:1

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    What a time span! Let that sink in. 480 years after the Israelites left Egypt, Solomon built the temple. Solomon became the King of Israel around 970 B.C., so the fourth year of his reign would be around 966 B.C. And 480 years before that would be around 1446 B.C.!

    King David had wanted to build a temple for God, but God said no. However, God allowed David’s son Solomon to build it. The temple would go on to become the national and religious center of Israel. This is clearly seen in the prominence of the temple in Jesus’ life. His parents dedicated him there as an infant. As a man, he traveled there for a number of religious feasts. Jesus cleared the temple of the money changers and taught there many times.

    But, for 480 years, the nation of Israel had no temple! Today, it is 2015; so, 480 years ago would be 1535. That is a long time ago. We declared our independence from Great Britain only 239 years ago. Imagine, if in the year 2256, we built our nation’s capital building in Washington, D.C.!

    God’s timetable is totally different than ours. We pray for something for a month or a year and it doesn’t get answered. So, we stop praying. But, when I read this verse, I was encouraged. I should never stop praying, even if it takes God decades to answer my prayers. That is true faith — to keep praying for something, even if God tarries in His answers!

    Waiting,

    Josh

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  138. Next Right Thing by

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    By Steele Croswhite

    “Don’t worry about the wicked or envy those who do wrong. For like grass, they soon fade away. Like spring flowers, they soon wither. Trust in the Lord and do good. Then you will live safely in the land and prosper. Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires.” Psalm 37:1-4

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    Recently, I have been encouraged by the reality of these verses. As a pastor, and even as a Christian, part of my faith is simply knowing that it can be tough at times. There will be times of persecution, times of struggle, pain and doubt. There will even be times when evil seems to win.

    BUT, the Lord instructs us to, “Trust in Him and do good…”. I appreciate the Lord’s “marching orders” for us when things seem grey — trust Him, then do more good.

    As I have pondered this Truth for the past several weeks, I have realized that part of trusting in the Lord is simply acting in faith to do more good. In other words, my prayers have been: “Though it is hard, Lord, I will trust you by reaching out even MORE to our city to do good. Though it is hard, Lord, I will trust you by doing more good in your church. Though it is hard, Lord, I will trust you by doing more good in my family. Though it is hard, Lord, I will trust you by doing more good for my neighbors.”

    The promise here is sweet. As you trust in Him and act in accordance with Him in faith for good, He gives a sweet promise of security: “Then you will live safely in the land and prosper.” The Lord knows that trouble is hard. He knows that at times it’s a fight for faith. But, He gives us our instructions and His promise with them.

    This week, if you doubt, or are struggling or fretting, act in faith. Trust Him in action — do something good for His names’ sake and rest in His promise of security.

    Doing good,

    Steele

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  139. Provo Music & Art Show by

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    Come and join us on Friday, March 6, as we host some fantastic local bands, featuring: Oh, Be Clever and Blackwave. There will also be some great art for sale from more local artists. This show will be a perfect opportunity to reach out to our community with the love of Jesus. Doors open at 7:00 p.m. (244 W. 100 S.). Come show your support — we’d love to have you stop by the music & art show!

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  140. Pray by

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    by Steve McInroy

    I’m thankful to be a part of a group of Utah County pastors and leaders who meet monthly, in an effort to build unity and pray together for the cause of Christ. We met last week and spent some time sharing about the different ways each of our ministries were reaching out to our communities. I was very encouraged by all the stories of people trusting God and the creative ideas being implemented. There were so many ministries being led just within the small group of leaders that had attended our prayer time this month.

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    One of my friends mentioned something that day that I have heard many times before and have no doubt said myself. This time, however, it rocked me to the core. He said, “We have been praying people into heaven.” This truth seems so elementary, that I think I can easily forget how incredibly important our prayers can be. It brings to mind Jude 1:20, “But you, dear friends, build yourselves up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit.”
    We all have access to God and we can ask Him anything at anytime. He loves it when we do. Hopefully, you will take this to heart and simply pray. Perhaps, at this very moment, you can actively participate in praying someone into heaven. I’m sure they’ll be glad that you did.

    Approaching His throne,

    Mac

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  141. Forgiven by

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    by Bill Young

    I’ve been recently teaching on one of my favorite subjects: forgiveness. I truly believe that many Christians do not really understand their forgiveness. This lack of understanding causes them to live like slaves to their sin! In John 8:32 Jesus says He came to set men free (“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”). Here’s some good news, Christian: ALL your sins are forgiven — you are FREE! We are free from sin. But, do we live like it? In order to live a life of freedom and joy, you need to understand that ALL YOUR SINS have been forgiven.

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    I love this little phrase: “All means all, and that’s all all means!” When it comes to forgiveness of sins, most Christians will tell you that ALL their sins are forgiven. Yet, there is a lack of joy, depression, guilt, and a propensity to perform penance that is found in the lives of many believers. Why? Take a look at the following verses and see if you can guess how many of your sins are totally forgiven:

      • 1 Peter 3:18 “For Christ died for sins once for ALL, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive by the Spirit…”
      • Romans 6:10 “The death he died, he died to sin once for ALL; but the life he lives, he lives to God.”
      • Hebrews 7:27 “Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for ALL when he offered himself.”
      • 1 John 1:7 “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from ALL sin.”

    The fact is, if you are a Christian, ALL your sins have been paid for and forgiven. Even if you don’t FEEL like it! If Christ didn’t pay for ALL of your sins, you’d never make it to heaven. If you were a sinner, you’d mess up heaven! Praise God you are a Saint, washed clean by the blood of Christ. Instead of being depressed, lamenting and feeling guilty about your sins, why not take time to thank God for dying to free you from the bondage of ALL your sins? Remember: All means all…

    Forgiven,

    Bill

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  142. Trust Jesus by

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    by Pastor Celeb Yetton

    John 14:1 “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me.”

    In John Chapter 13, Jesus gave His disciples shocking news. Jesus informed them that He was going to be betrayed by one of their closest friends, and soon He would leave them and go where they could not follow. To top that off, they heard Jesus tell Simon Peter that He knew Peter was going to deny even knowing Him three times. Talk about a lot of upsetting information. After all of that, Jesus said in the verse above, “But, don’t be troubled. Trust me.” Wow! The disciples probably thought they had every reason to be unsettled.

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    The fact of the matter is that we need to memorize John 14:1; we need to walk with it in our hearts and minds every single day! This world is full of extremely troubling and difficult things and it can throw us for a major loop if we do not place all of our trust in Jesus. Jesus understood that His disciples would question everything they had heard and seen during their three years with Him when they saw Him brutally murdered and laid in the tomb. Where were they to put their hope and trust in the midst of that distress? In Jesus!

    I can struggle with anxiety quite a bit. Stressing over this and over that, I allow my heart to be troubled by the cares and worries of this world. Without even realizing it, there have been many times I have been at my job, all tensed up and irritable. I’ve even felt physically sick on occasion. But then I am brought back to the realization that I am trying to carry the burden of a situation all on my own shoulders rather than giving my stresses to Jesus and trusting in Him. In those moments, I need to remind myself of the truth that even in the middle of my troubling and confusing circumstances, Jesus is in control and I can fully trust Him. I need to remember the truth that Jesus is my stronghold (Psalm 9:9-10), He has dealt bountifully with me in His steadfast love (Psalm 13:5-6), and I am treasured by Him (Matt. 10:29-31).

    Trusting Jesus,

    Caleb

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  143. He is Able by

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    by Bryan Edwards

    “Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen” Ephesians 3:20-21
    In 1999, The Rock Church’s first service humbly started in Pastor Bill Young’s living room in Sandy, Utah. In 2003, we launched our first church plant in Salt Lake City. In 2007, God sent us off again as we planted a new church in Provo, Utah. The day has now come where God is on the move yet again.

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    Over the past 12 months, 60 faithful saints and their children have been praying and preparing for the next “big thing” God is doing in our lives. This Friday, Feb 6, there will be another awesome milestone for The Rock Church and for the Kingdom of God! Our newest location will have its Grand Opening on the west side of Salt Lake Valley.

    As I sit back and ponder these amazing events, I am in complete awe of what God has done through His local church, and in the lives of His people. It’s almost unbelievable to imagine that what God would start with a couch full of people in a living room, would expand into hundreds and hundreds of people serving along side one another stretching from four locations from Salt Lake City to Provo!

    As I meditate on this verse in Ephesians, I am reminded that God has promised to do more with our lives than we could ever ask. He is also able to do more with us than we could ever think or imagine. He is the God of wonders who works through His people throughout all generations!

    God is doing amazing things here in Utah! Christian, you are a part of it? As His children, we can expect Him to continue to do amazing things with our lives! Be encouraged and be excited, as He has many more amazing plans in the works.
    God is able to do far more amazing things than we could ever imagine!

    “To Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.”

    Amazed,

    Bryan

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  144. Local First Leader Circle by

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    Local First & The Rock Church

    Because we love people and we love our community, The Rock Church has partnered with Local First, an organization who helps support local businesses and artists in our neighborhoods and city. Local First recently featured a blog about our partnership with them and we are so excited to share it with you now!

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  145. The Rock Church West – Grand Opening by

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    Our big day has finally arrived! Last summer, we sent 60 faithful saints to venture off and start a new church service on the west side of the valley. On Friday, February 6, The Rock Church West will have our GRAND OPENING!

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    We are so excited to see what God will do with our faithfulness to honor and serve Him. We are asking that you join us in prayer for God to do the miraculous and draw hundreds and hundreds of new people into His Church and save their souls! Feel free to invite a friend and join us February 6, or we’d love to have you any Friday night this spring!

    Friday Nights – 7:00 p.m. at 5445 S 2700 W

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  146. Powerful by

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    by Billy Johnson

    “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him.” (Ephesians 1: 3-4)

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    The other day I was riding with my son in our truck. I asked him what came to his mind when he thought of something powerful. He told me he thought of lightning and a really strong guy, like Samson. Then he told me that he knew someone way stronger than anyone in the world. I asked him who that was, and he said, “God!” I said, “Good answer, son!” My five-year-old son was absolutely right; God is more powerful than anyone, or anything on this earth.

    It’s so easy to lose sight of how incredibly and truly powerful our God is. If every Christian woke up and spent a few minutes in deep thought about this, and remembered how God chose to have relationship with us, we would cherish the gift of salvation and our relationship with Him so much more than we do.

    Think about it, Christian. God has been waiting for and looking forward to a relationship with you since before the foundations of the earth. God’s desire for this relationship with you is older than the stone that David used to kill Goliath. It’s older than the mountain that Noah’s Ark came to rest upon. It’s older than any dinosaur bone. Christian, God’s desire for relationship with you is older than the dust that Adam was created out of! We have access to this incredible God through His Holy Spirit, who lives in us.

    He loves us and He desires to have relationship with us. He died for us so that we could be holy and blameless before Him and approach the throne of grace with confidence. Let’s spend some time rejoicing that we have an all-powerful God who loves us and answers our prayers.

    Dwelling on His power,

    Billy

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  147. GCC Newsletter by

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    GCC newsletter

    The Rock Churches in Utah are blessed to be a associated relationally with of a larger family of churches around the country and world. As believers in Jesus Christ we have been forgiven and transformed by the grace of God.

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    The heart of the Great Commission church movement is to tell the message of Jesus Christ to every nation and to build churches that follow the New Testament. Check out the monthly GCC Newsletter sent from our national office as well as clicking on this link to see the list of churches associated with us through the fellowship of churches in the Great Commission movement.

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  148. Draper Small Groups by

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    Small groups in Draper

    If you come to the Draper Church for very long, you’ll hear us talk about how important we think Small Groups are. I believe that they are one of God’s biggest and best ideas (and I think you’re really going to love them!). The word “church” shows up in the Bible no less than 79 times. In some cases, we read of large group meetings at the temple and at other times we hear of smaller groups gathering in homes.

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    Which is it? Large or small? The answer is… it’s both! We believe that God has a plan for Small Groups and wants to use them to be an essential part of every believer’s life! In our Draper Church, we have many different groups meeting throughout the week and I strongly encourage everyone to join one. You become part of a smaller “family” and “do life” together. When you’re having a difficult time, there are others right there to support you. When life is going great, there will be others ready to rejoice with you! We all need to love and serve with others and Small Groups are the way to see that happen. If you miss out on Small Groups, you’re missing out on the true heartbeat of our church. Please contact me if you have questions or I can help you in any way. Don’t put off joining one — there are some of your new best friends waiting to meet you!

    Spring 2015 Small Group Directory

    Bill

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  149. Stewards of Grace by

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    by Austin Fredrickson

    God gives us all grace. He gives us grace in forgiving our sins when they do not deserve to be forgiven and He gives us grace in blessing us with many good things that we do not deserve. Personally, I feel like He has given me so much and I have a ton to be thankful for: my wife, my son, my house, my job, our church, a good education, food to eat everyday, etc, etc… You and I have been given so many good things, all by God’s grace.

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    In the same way, as God has given us gifts in His grace, we are to give graciously. The Bible says that we are literally stewards of God’s grace. God has been so incredibly kind to us in all that He has given to us and in return He asks us to be good stewards of that varied grace. 1 Peter 4:10 says, “As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace.”

    I have been convicted by this verse lately. I look at it this way: I should be aiming to give as much grace as I have received from God in Christ. When I have a conversation with someone I should remember the Grace that God has given to me. When I am writing my tithe check, I should remember all that God has graciously given to me. When I need to train or correct my son, I should be as gracious to him as God has been to me. When someone in my small group is in need of my help or my time, I should give to them freely, in the same way that God has freely given to me. You get the idea!

    As stewards of God’s grace, let’s give it freely!

    In His Abundant Grace,
    Austin

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  150. Calling Draper Musicians! by

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    Calling Draper Musicians

    We are currently looking for gifted musicians and vocalists interested in participating in and leading worship music at The Rock Church in Draper. We are looking for adults as well as youth who will be at least 12 years old (in 7th grade) by the fall of 2015. A few things we ask of you include:

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    • Be a believer in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
    • Consider The Rock Church your church home – attend regularly, participate in serving in some capacity. (Typically, there is a waiting period for new musicians for ten months before having them lead worship. But please feel free to audition and talk with Jeff Porter about your interest no matter how long you’ve been serving.)
    • Have a gift as a musician or vocalist.
    • Make a video audition no more than 5 minutes long that demonstrates two or three different styles of music.
    • Post the video to your YOUTUBE account and send a link to that video to Jeff Porter at drjnporter@msn.com.
    • Please submit the video by February 15th.  We will have a follow up “live” audition at a later date.

    If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Jeff Porter at drjnporter@msn.com. Also, for more information about The Rock Music (the music ministry of The Rock Church), please visit, www.therockmusic.org

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  151. Give Thanks by

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    Give Thanks, by Tony D'Amico

    “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18

    “Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Ephesians 5:20

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    “I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart; I will recount all of Your wonderful deeds.” Psalm 9:1

    There is a running theme in these three verses. It is something I am challenged with and should be always doing…giving thanks.

    We are officially a couple of weeks into 2015, and I hope there has been time for you to reflect on the past year and look forward to what is ahead for you.

    For me, there has been a time of reflection as I focused my thoughts on being thankful for everything that has happened in the last year of my life. I started by thinking about all of the good things: my health, my wife and two boys, my job, my talents, that I have a house and food. The list could go on and on and on…

    But then the verse from Thessalonians came to mind… “Give thanks in ALL CIRCUMSTANCES”. It was a good reminder to me — that I should be thankful for everything in ALL (not some), but ALL CIRCUMSTANCES. I started to think about the bad things that happened in the last year, prayers that didn’t get answered, other circumstances that were tough. It was rough, but I thanked God for those times as well.

    The Psalmist says in 107:1, “Oh Give thanks to the Lord, for HE IS GOOD, for his steadfast love endures forever!”

    God is so good to us in all things. In all circumstances, both the good and the bad!

    “I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart; I will recount all of Your wonderful deeds.” Psalm 9:1

    With the New Year here, many of us made resolutions and looked for ways to “improve” our lives and take a step closer to a goal. These resolutions can be good — to examine our lives and see how we can improve in different areas, like reading the Bible daily, praying more, eating better, exercising more, giving more of our time serving, tightening up our budget and the list goes on. But let’s not forget the resolution God challenges us with in these verses — give thanks in all circumstances this year!

    Giving Thanks –

    Tony

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  152. The Future by

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    by Josh Whitney

    Early one morning, I was in my office reading, and my young son got out of bed and walked in. He informed me he needed to use the bathroom. I told him do it! I sat there reading for a few more minutes, and then I realized I never heard the toilet flush. So, I went upstairs to check on him, and he was quietly sitting on the toilet, waiting for me to help him “finish up” his business. I told him, “Son, you need to tell me these things, so I can help you.” He looked at me, deadly serious, and said, “Dad, no one knows the future but God.” I laughed and said, “You’re right.”

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    As I think back on the year that was 2014, I can think of many plans we had as a church: Draper Building, new church plant, new pastors, deacons and leaders, outreaches, and many more. As individuals, families, and a larger church family, parts of 2014 went exactly as we thought they would and many parts had nothing to do with our plans. To name a few as a church family: winning the Lasko Grant, leadership changes, delays in the church plant, partnering with a church on the West side, opening the Draper Church, health issues, moving, marital challenges, unexpected babies, and many, many more.

    One year ago, if you had told me of all of the encouraging things AND all of the difficult things that would happen in 2014, I don’t know if I would have even believed you. But as we start 2015, I find this verse encouraging. Ephesians 1:11, “In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will,”… My son was right, no one knows the future but God. And He is good!

    Anticipating,

    Josh

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  153. Go Low by

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    Go Low, A Word by Steele Croswhite

    Recently, I spent some time working through and teaching on the amazing verses found in John 13:1-20.

    10 Jesus replied, “A person who has bathed all over does not need to wash, except for the feet, to be entirely clean. And you disciples are clean, but not all of you.” 14 And since I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you ought to wash each other’s feet. 15 I have given you an example to follow. Do as I have done to you. 16 I tell you the truth, slaves are not greater than their master. Nor is the messenger more important than the one who sends the message. 17 Now that you know these things, God will bless you for doing them. 20 I tell you the truth, anyone who welcomes my messenger is welcoming me, and anyone who welcomes me is welcoming the Father who sent me.”

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    There are many themes running through these verses, but here is the big picture: messengers of Jesus (that’s you and me), both then and today, should “go low” in humility and service. This is not only because Jesus did it, and not only because verse 17 says it is the most deeply joyful way of life, but also because you are clean.

    Messengers of Jesus know their true, unshakable standing with God as “completely clean” (verse 10) and they don’t claim that they have no sin. But they know how to deal with their ongoing sin.

    Messengers depend on God on a daily basis and receive daily renewal. When Jesus offers to “wash their feet” they say, “Yes. I know I am clean — I am born again, I am saved. I am justified. I have eternal life. I am a child of God. But I have sinned and I receive the “daily foot-washing”, the renewed cleansing of Jesus.”

    Because Jesus went low, and because going low is the path of joy, and because you are completely clean, don’t exalt yourself. Instead, go low in humble service.

    This is a charge to all of us as Christians. Pastors, go low. Heads of households, go low. Small Group leaders, go low. Presidents of companies, owners, supervisors, managers, go low. Mom and Dad, go low. Big brothers and sisters, go low. ‘A’ students, go low. Good athletes, go low. Great musicians, go low. Pretty teenage girls, go low. Cool hipster dudes, go low.

    Christian, go low. You represent your Savior! To know His joy, and because you are completely clean, humble yourself this week and follow the example of Christ.

    Going low,

    Steele

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  154. More This Christmas by

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    More this Christmas, A Word by Pastor Bill Young

    “However, as it is written: ‘No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him“ — but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit.’” (1 Corinthians 2:9-10 NIV)

    Christmas is so close, and I can assure you, there are a few excited boys at the Young home (yes, I am one of them)! Christmas is indeed a magical time. Read more →

    My wife works very hard to wrap presents and fill the stockings that are hung over our fireplace. Many years ago, after one of her gift wrapping marathons, our youngest boy, Timothy, hugged her and said, “Thanks for wrapping more presents, Mom!” He also thanked her for not putting all the presents under the tree so he would be surprised with the appearance of new presents on Christmas morning! I think we can all relate to this innate desire to be “surprised” with more. In fact, I think this is how God created us — with longings on earth that will never be satisfied until we get to heaven.

    I truly believe that even if we received all the presents in the world this Christmas, we would never truly be satisfied. Only God can satisfy our longings. I’m convinced that we long for “more” because were created for more — we were created to be with God forever in heaven. That is why we sometimes feel bummed out — even when (especially when) we get everything we “want”, and yet remain unsatisfied.

    In his classic book, Mere Christianity, CS Lewis wrote: “If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.”

    Amen! We were made for a new world! This Christmas, why not remind yourself that this life can only offer temporary happiness and limited satisfaction. God has so much more for us in the future. Heaven awaits us. Only then will we be satisfied!

    How about you? Are you looking forward to Heaven? Are you excited about spending time with Jesus and loved ones who are now waiting for you? Do you desire “more”? I know I do. Remember, someday we will be there, and only then will we be fulfilled.

    Merry Christmas!

    Bill

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  155. Knowing Jesus: These are Written Release by

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    Knowing Jesus: These are Written

    It has FINALLY arrived and YOU have an opportunity to get it FIRST along with other awesome exclusive items.

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    On November 22, The Rock Music is releasing Knowing Jesus: These Are Written; a musical interpretation of the first 12 Chapters of the Gospel of John. Musically, each song stands on its own, defining both the mood and intensity of content. At times, heart pounding. At others, heart breaking. Always authentic. This album is the first of a two-volume set, featuring the combined talents of The Rock Music in Salt Lake City, Utah. Its message is timeless; its music is personal.

    Right now there are limited, exclusive pre-sale packages available until November 22 or until they sell out.

    These packages range in price from $10-$75, and their value exceeds their low prices.

    Our best pre-sale package for only $75 is a $136 value and includes:

    • The newest release: “Knowing Jesus: These Are Written” CD ($10 retail)
    • Live Acoustic Chapter songs (digital)
    • 6 pack of TRM picks ($3)
    • 1 Knowing Jesus Laminate ($5)
    • 1 Dog tag (image displays two to show front and back) ($3)
    • Knowing Jesus Sticker ($1)
    • In You The Truth Abides Shirt ($15 Retail)
    • Digital Download cards for Sow, Rise, Gather, and Rejoice (they also double as a sticker!) ($19 Retail)
    • 4 John Screen Printed Prints (9”x9”). ($20 Retail)
    • One of each TRM release on Disc! (6 records: Anything, Captured by Grace, Rev. I, Rev. II, Promises and ALIVE. ($60 Retail)

    Order Now!

    Also, please join us for a festival celebration on November 22, at 6 p.m. at our Salt lake City location. We will have live music, multimedia art projection, two Food Trucks, tons of new swag and of course, the new release. The doors open at 6 p.m. and the event is TOTALLY FREE. Invite your friends and come party! The concert will be held in place of service, no childcare available that night.

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  156. Women’s Christmas Tea by

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    A Christmas Tea

    When: Sunday, December 7 at 3:00 p.m.
    Where: Draper location
    Cost: $12

    We’d be delighted to have you join us at our women’s Christmas Tea, as we celebrate the gift of Jesus and spend some very special time together.

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    This is a wonderful opportunity for you to get dressed up a bit, enjoy a delicious selection of foods (and tea, of course), a little Christmas music and hear the Good News of the Gospel. Plan on inviting a friend, family member or co-worker and enjoy this meaningful tea time together.

    The cost is only $12.00 per person and a gluten free menu selection is available ONLY if you request it when you register ahead of time. Sign up by Wednesday, December 3 – you’re going to be so glad that you did!

    We can’t wait to have A Christmas Tea with you!

    Questions? Please contact Mary Young at 801-703-8743 or mary@experiencetherock.com.

    Register Today!

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  157. What’s So Great About Grace? (series in Draper) by

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    What's So Great About Grace?

    There is a word which conveys wonderful hope and comfort to the Christian, but is often misunderstood by the world. That word is grace. The Apostle Paul used this magnificent word in every epistle that he wrote. He often began and ended his letters with the mention of this word.

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    But, what does it actually mean? Why is grace so often misunderstood, specifically in our Utah culture? More importantly, how can understanding grace make a practical difference in YOUR life?

    Our Draper location will take a break from our Knowing Jesus series to present this brand new, four-week sermon series, we will focus our attention on this wonderful word, and discover how great grace really is.

    Please join us!

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  158. Frontline Conference by

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    Frontline Conference

    To live as a disciple of Jesus Christ means to love Jesus, and to love people like He does.

    But what does Jesus’ love look like in a Facebook culture that lists 40+ different choices for gender?

    How do we share about the love of the Father in a generation in which 50+% of American children grow up in broken homes, 40% are born out of wedlock, and it’s estimated that more than 685,000 experience abuse each year?

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    What does it mean to offer the abundant life Jesus promised in a world where recreational sex is normal, drug and alcohol abuse are routine, and pornography generates as much revenue as the NFL?

    And, as the social fabric in America loses its Christian framework, what challenges and choices will the committed disciple face in the workplace? In education? With our government?
    The world has changed.

    What does that mean for a heart set to follow Jesus?

    In America we are now living in a culture more like the first century than the 20th century – in its values and worldview. The first century church was born into the same cultural and spiritual tension that Christianity increasingly faces today. Yet those first believers found their place at the frontline of this tension and never backed away. They followed Jesus in a very broken world, and they changed an empire. Frontline 2014 is going to take a raw, head-on look at what it means to live for Jesus in a generation that knows almost as little about Him as the generation into which He was born.

    Frontline Messages:
    Though anyone and everyone is invited to Frontline 2014, topics related specifically to family or marriage will not be addressed this year. Subjects addressed will be focused on understanding and responding to cultural and spiritual issues encountered daily by Christians in the world of education, media and the workplace, as well as our own culture-influenced lives. There will be no seminars this year; all messages will be main sessions.

    Frontline Venue:
    Frontline 2014 will be simple in focus and in form. The goal is to strip everything down to the challenges of following Jesus in a world that rejects the narrow road He called us to. The location will be a high school; breakfast and lunch will be provided, and dinner will be on your own. Accommodations will be in a nearby hotel, or for those looking for the most basic, economical option, housing like the very first Great Commission conferences has been arranged – sleeping in the high school.

    Frontline Days:
    Frontline 2014 is simply about knowing what it means to stand with Jesus in a world increasingly intolerant of Him. There will be a focus on prayer, time to be with God and time to be with one another. There will also be opportunities to explore Moab and the amazing, God-made scenery surrounding it. Frontline is about renewing you and preparing you to grow and bear fruit in this coming year. It’s also about fellowship, building friendships, and getting to know believers from churches all over the Mountains West Region. It will end with a New Year’s Celebration on December 31st.

    Frontline is designed to be more than another good conference. It is aimed at touching and changing the lives of every person that comes – spiritually, relationally, and in life-direction. Frontline is about seeking and seeing the heart of Jesus. He is our Captain at the frontline we live in. And He promises He will never leave those who choose to stand with Him.

    For more information please visit the Frontline Conference website.

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  159. Draper Grand Opening! by

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    Draper Grand Opening

    WE ARE EXCITED to finally be a part of the Draper Community and want to cordially invite you to join us for our Open House and Grand Opening Celebration weekend! On Saturday, our Open House will include: a Ribbon Cutting Ceremony with the Draper Chamber of Commerce, a greeting from Draper Mayor Troy Walker, refreshments, tours of our new facility, fun gifts, balloons, and a bouncy castle for kids!

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    On Sunday, join us for our official Draper Grand Opening Celebration Service and a free, catered lunch. The following week, we will begin a brand new, four-week teaching series called, “What’s So Great About Grace?”. You won’t want to miss it! We look forward to meeting you and your entire family. At The Rock Church, it’s all about relationship! See you November 1 & 2, 2014! Don’t forget to set your clocks back one hour on Saturday night!

    OPEN HOUSE
    Saturday • November 1 • from 1-3 p.m. Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at 2 p.m.

    GRAND OPENING
    Sunday • November 2 • Services at 9:30 & 11:15 a.m.

    NEW 4-PART TEACHING SERIES
    Starts Sunday • November 9 • 9:30 & 11:15 a.m.
    (Kid’s Programs provided)

    Our new Draper facility is located on 11630 S 700 E, Draper, UT 84020

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  160. Plunging by

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    Plunging, a Word from Pastor Caleb Yetton

    “Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10 NASB

    What a beautiful promise from our Father!

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    My family recently returned from a boating trip to Lake Havasu. While riding on the boat, we stopped in small coves a couple of times; I took my two-year old son, Abel, out to swim with me. He has always been pretty hesitant when it comes to water. After putting on my life jacket and grabbing a floating swim noodle, I picked up my cautious son (in his own life jacket), and we gently got into the lake. Abel was safely floating in my arms with his head high above the water.

    Immediately after entering the water, Abel began requesting that we return to the safety of the boat. As we floated farther away I looked into my son’s anxious eyes and assured him that there was nothing to be afraid of. I told him, “Son, everything is going to be okay. You are safe. Your daddy is holding you and he will not let anything bad happen to you.”

    Abel soon calmed down and began to actually enjoy the experience of being in the refreshing lake with his daddy. We laughed together, splashed in the water and Abel even started to yell back at the boat for his mommy and friends to watch him as he swam. What a joy it was to see my son trust me for his safety and for his enjoyment.

    As this all unfolded, I was reminded how this can be like my relationship with my Father. I can squirm in fear when God asks me to trust Him and take the plunge of faith into the unknown waters of life. All the while, He has buckled me into a life jacket of salvation and holds me firmly in His loving embrace.

    May we all learn to trust our “Daddy” even more and never forget the promise that He will never leave us nor forsake us (Deut. 31:6).

    Taking the plunge,

    Caleb

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  161. Help Us Finish Our Draper Building! by

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    Help Us Finish Our Draper Building!

    As you know, we are a little more than half way through our three-year ROOTS 2.0 Capital Campaign and our new facility in Draper is nearing completion! This is a very exciting time for all of us and we are so thankful for each one of you, who have so generously given to get us this far. The brick, steel, and mortar are in place — but we still need to purchase all of the inside furnishings that will truly make this church house a church home.

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    In order to do this, we would like to introduce a fun, new opportunity for you to continue to be a part of helping us as we purchase all of the necessary furniture, gear, kid’s ministry tools, chairs, lighting, etc. that will be needed to complete this awesome project. We’re calling it an online ROOTS Store. We only need one of some items, but others (like chairs), we need to purchase hundreds! Our ROOTS Storefront is a great way for everyone (including your kids) to get involved in making our dream a complete reality.

    Visit the ROOTS 2.0 Storefront to see what needs we have and donate for specific furnishings. God bless you and thanks in advance for your part in changing lives in Utah and beyond.

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  162. Overflowing by

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    Overflowing, A word from Pastor Bryan Edwards

    John 7:38 “Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’”

    My son, Wesley, has recently fallen in love with the movie Toy Story. We got him the replica Woody doll that now goes with him (and us) wherever we go. Woody has a place at the dinner table, in the car, and even has his own blanket and pillow! Wesley introduces Woody to everyone who crosses his path. As a family, we just got home from Disneyland, and Wesley got the chance to meet Woody in person! Just a few nights ago (it was the sweetest thing to see) as he was fast asleep, Wesley cracked the biggest smile as he was remembering the day they met. Wesley’s love for Woody overflows into every aspect of his life.

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    Just like a child’s adoration for his favorite toy, the Lord used that relationship to remind me that a Christian’s affections for Christ should overflow in the same way.

    Jesus says in John, Chapter 7, that when we come and believe in Him, our hearts will begin to overflow! When God places His Spirit in us, He does a complete overhaul of all the “stuff” that used to fill us up. That means when our affections and desires become more and more satisfied and fixated on Jesus, our hearts will overflow with love and compassion to others, just like Jesus.

    Christianity is marked by sharing our lives with one another, encouraging and discipling each other, loving, serving, and praying for one another. As I meditated on this verse this week, I kept asking myself, “Where am I overflowing in my life?” I ask you the same question, Christian — “Where are you overflowing?”

    Ask God, by the power of His Holy Spirit, to fill you up and spill you out with the love and compassion of Jesus today!

    An overflowing work in progress,

    Bryan

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  163. Changes by

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    Changes, a word from Pastor Billy Johnson

    “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.” James 1:17

    A few weeks ago my youngest daughter’s life changed forever and my family experienced something very exciting! On September 4, at 12:52 p.m., she was warm, safe and comfortable in the womb, completely content with the only way of life she had ever known. At 12:53 p.m., she was cold, uncomfortable and feeling very unsafe. It was bright and loud and all of her senses were peaked. Every single thing she was experiencing was brand new. She didn’t welcome this change; in fact, she was so upset about it that all of the nurses and doctors were commenting on how loud her screaming was!

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    While I was watching her experience all of this change, I was reminded of how much Jesus changes the lives of those who are born again. In 2 Corinthians, Chapter 5, Paul tells us “…if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” That means God changes our lives forever. That means that some of the things we experience or feel are going to be brand new to us, and not always welcome. Change isn’t a bad thing, however. Just as my daughter needed to be born so she could grow and know what it means to truly live life, God gives us change to grow us and teach us what it means to truly live a life for Him.

    There is a lot of newness in the Johnson home right now: new baby, new job, new church plant, our oldest is starting kindergarten, and our four kids are changing daily!

    We are praising God for the good and perfect gift He has given us in our baby girl. We’re watching Him work in our lives and are trusting Him in these changes, because we hold fast to the promise that He knows the plans that He has for us. They’re plans for welfare and not for evil, to give us a future and a hope. We know He loves us and is using all of this newness to grow us closer to Him, closer to each other, and closer to His people.

    Changing for Him,

    Billy

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  164. In Raging Waves by

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    In Raging Waves, a word from Pastor Austin Fredrickson

    The summer between my freshman and sophomore year in college, I bought a small, 16 foot sailboat that only held about four people. My favorite place to sail was on Lake Michigan; the lake was so huge you couldn’t see any side other than the one you left from. It felt like you were alone at sea with unlimited routes to take.

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    One Saturday in late summer, we took the boat out, even though the conditions were very rough. We had fun for a while, challenging the waves and being tossed around; it felt like a real adventure! Unfortunately, the fun turned to panic when the waves started coming into the boat. We were tossed to and fro and began to lose hope. We were inexperienced and the sea was too rough. After a long battle, the crew (me and two friends), had to abandon the sailboat and let it be taken by the sea. We grabbed our life jackets and jumped into the violent water. Fortunately, there were no casualties that day. After I crawled up onto the sandy shore and looked back at the boat being pummeled by the waves, I cried out to the Lord for him to take us out of that situation!

    I was reminded of this tragedy when I was studying John, Chapter 6. The disciples were caught at sea in a very rough storm. Jesus was not surprised by the storm nor was he shaken. He came to his disciples and rescued them in the midst of their trial. He commanded the wind and the waves and met them in their time of need. The disciple’s hearts were so encouraged that Peter jumped out of the boat and walked on the water to Jesus!

    How often do we neglect to cry out to the Lord in the midst of our trials? Do we ask God to take us out of our situation or for him to meet us in it? Jesus not only saved his friends, but he met them and was present with them. I would take Jesus being close to me in a trial over having an easy life any day!

    Maybe you are in a trial right now? The sea is raging and the waves look overwhelming. Let us not forget that Jesus meets us where we are! He is near to the brokenhearted and has not abandoned you in your trials. Even though times may be hard, Jesus is with you; there is hope!

    “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” Romans 12:12

    Christian, let us rejoice in our hope, for Jesus is nearer than you think!

    Rejoicing with you,

    Austin

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  165. Eternal Fulfillment by

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    Etneral Fulfillment, a word from Pastor Tony D'Amico

    “Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you. For on him God the Father has set his seal.” – John 6:27

    This was Jesus’ reply to the Jews the day after He fed the multitudes. He gave them a beautiful analogy of food to help them understand what He was saying.

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    When you think about food, you also think about hunger. There are two kinds of hunger we will experience in our lives. First, there is a physical hunger, which only physical food can satisfy. The second hunger is spiritual — spiritual hunger cannot be satisfied by anything this world offers.

    Jesus is saying here is that we need to not let anything come before the feeding of our soul. Man consists not only of body, but of spirit and soul as well. We should not devote all of our strength, talents and time to the feeding of our bodies, which in a few, short years will rot away and be eaten by worms. Rather, we need to focus on feeding our souls, by being in the Word and prayer.

    Jesus is making a point here; He isn’t just talking about food. It there anything that is getting in the way of you feeding your soul? Are you laboring for a better job at the sacrifice of being in community? Are you laboring for more clothes, better toys, electronic devices? Are you laboring at work so you can have more free time to play video games and to hang out with your friends? The point Jesus is making, is that we need to look at our lives, take inventory of the things we are laboring for, and prioritize them. If all of these things are taking us away from our prayer time, our quiet times, our church time, our community time, then we need to re-evaluate what we are working for.

    WHAT ARE YOU LABORING FOR?

    Christian, we need to make sure we understand this challenge — do not labor for things that perish. Rather, we should make sure our souls are fed day by day with the Word of God… “Man shall not live on bread alone but by every word of that proceeds out of the mouth of God.” (Luke4:4). We need to work tirelessly for a better knowledge of the Word of God. Soak it in! Let it sink down into the depths of your hearts and soul.

    Let us be known as a church that labors for eternal things, not temporal things.

    Tony

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  166. Kid’s Rock Meeting by

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    To all of our awesome parents who have children in our SLC Kid’s Rock program, and to all of our awesome teachers who serve: please join us THIS Saturday, August 16 at 6 p.m. at the Salt Lake building. We will introduce our new coordinators and talk about the important truths your kids will be learning this year — and how you can help them grow in the Gospel. Please contact Chris Erickson with any questions!

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  167. Thankful by

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    “I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers.” (Ephesians 1:16-17 NIV)

    I was recently on vacation with my family in Iowa (see picture of butter cow above), and was reminded about how thankful I am for your faithfulness and generosity in your giving to The Rock Church! God is using your gifts and sacrifices to make a real difference in the lives of many people and in the ministry of our church.

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    Just last week, I received an encouraging email illustrating the importance of our gospel work and how our giving is making an eternal impact. The email said in part:

    “When my husband and I were dating, we were invited to a small group at The Rock… My husband had left the LDS Church years prior but hadn’t quite embraced any sort of faith system. Anyway, through that small group my husband came to accept Christ. Not only was this beautiful for my husband personally, but hugely encouraging to me as it opened the door for the marriage that we are so blessed to enjoy now.”

    Wow — that is what it is all about! God uses everything we offer him. He blesses our faith. He honors our sacrificial giving, which eventually translates into changed lives, salvations and transformed marriages!

    It says in 2 Corinthians 8:11-12, “For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what he does not have.”

    This sums up the ministry of The Rock Church — and also reflects our Mission Statement — WIN the lost, BUILD the believer, SEND the sanctified. One of the most encouraging ways we’re all working together right now is in our combined efforts to complete our new facility in Draper. We should move in sometime during October thanks to you! Yee hah!

    Your gifts, as offerings, are tangible expressions of faith. They are making a real difference in people’s lives and also making the ministry of our church possible. Thank you for being a part of all that God is doing — may He bless your faithfulness.

    Thankful for you,

    Bill

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  168. Freedom by

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    Freedom, a word from the Pastor at The Rock Church

    John 3:17-18a “For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned…”

    Thank the Lord for this truth — I need to remind myself of it daily!

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    Growing up in a Christian home, I felt like I understood the truth of the Gospel pretty well. I constantly heard that God loved me and that Jesus died for me, yet I still spent much of my life feeling like Jesus was mad at me. I felt like I was so sinful that God couldn’t stand to be around me. In the shame and loneliness of sin, I would distance myself from Him, thinking I needed to show Him that I was really sorry for my sin.

    To be honest, these same thoughts can still creep into my mind from time to time, even now. I can feel myself easily going back into that bad habit of guilt. Our enemy, the devil, wants me to believe that God is mad at me; that He is disappointed in me. Even to believe that He has given up on me. But, the truth of the matter is found in Romans 8:1, “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.“ It continues in verse two, “For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.”

    If you have placed your trust and faith in Jesus for your salvation, the truth is, Jesus has set you free from condemnation. He wants you to be free from guilt and shame. God does not disapprove of you. He is completely for you. God has placed your sin as far as the east is from the west (Psalm 103:12). Your position before the Lord isn’t dependent on your own merit but on God’s faithfulness (Jeremiah 32:37-41), (Hebrews 10:17). When God looks at you, He sees the righteousness of Christ (2 Corinthians 5:21) and He rejoices over you (Zephaniah 3:17).

    Standing in His freedom,

    Caleb

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  169. Closer by

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    Closer, a word from the pastor

    Psalm 145:18 “The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.”

    As a dad, I am continually amazed by how much my little boy keeps growing and learning. He can bust out all of Michael Jackson’s dance moves, he can tell me about every slide at the park, and he ALWAYS remembers what I promised him we would do from the day before. Read more →

    I love to spend all the time I can with my little dude. He listens to me, he obeys me, and he wants to learn from me. From the moment I get home from work until bedtime, he wants to do everything together. Whether we watch a thunderstorm outside, crack open a new can of Play Doh, or hand a cashier the debit card, he’s excited. He wants me to be in his life.

    There is a neat correlation here; as it melts my heart to have him want me around for the little and big things in his life, so our Father takes great joy when we include Him in all the aspects of our lives. I could never get bored while hanging out with my son; how much more does God take delight in being with us!

    I’m aware that as Wesley grows older and becomes a man, we will have less and less time with each other. But I will still want to be in his life, because I love him and I cherish him.

    In James, Chapter 4, it says to, “Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you.” God is our Father who delights in us and cherishes our time with Him. But like many of us know, finding that quality time to be with God can get more and more difficult! What is it that is keeping you from a more intimate relationship with Him today? Let’s fight for the time it takes to be closer to our God.

    The quote by J. Oswald Sanders has always struck my heart; “We are now, and we will be in the future, only as intimate with God as we really choose to be.” Family, let’s make an effort to be as excited about our Heavenly Father as a child is for his daddy to chase him through the sprinklers.

    Choosing to be closer,

    Bryan

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  170. Provo Church Campout by

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    Provo Campout

    If you are part of the The Provo Church, we are going camping and would love to have you join us! We’ll be camping on August 2-3 at Diamond Campground and THERE WILL BE NO CHURCH SERVICE ON SUNDAY IN PROVO (August 3) because we’ll be at the campground enjoying great food, fun activities and some baptisms! Read more →

    The cost is $5 for individuals and $10 for families and dogs are allowed. Sign up on-line or Robbie Rathburn with any questions.

    Here are directions and more details…

    Directions: Take Hwy 6 up Spanish Fork Canyon and look for brown info signs for Diamond Campground take a left off Hwy 6 and follow signs to group sites 2 and 3.

    Sites: The church reserved two group sites, will provide charcoal and starter fluid, and we will be sharing the two pavilions which are equipped with campfire pits and grills.

    Details: Everyone needs to bring all of your own supplies. Tents, campers, sleeping bags, water, food, sun screen, umbrella’s, bug spray, etc…

    Tentative Schedule:

    • Arrive: anytime Saturday after 2 p.m. and before 9 p.m.
    • Supper: Coals will be hot n’ ready at approx 7 p.m. Saturday if you would like to use the pavilion grills for grill your own. Share what you can and we will have some extra hotdogs and water available
    • Campfire: We will sing some songs and share testimonies after supper Saturday night at the larger pavilion at site 3.
    • Activities: Hiking and a cool stream flows right near our sites for tubing and rafts. Also a large parking lot for scooters, bikes, skateboards, remote toys, etc.
    • Church & Baptisms: Sunday at 9 a.m. we will sing some songs at site 3 and share some quiet time thoughts (bring a verse and/or thought to share) and baptize a few people immediately following (talk to Mac if you want to be baptized)
    • Depart: Clean up and be gone by 1 p.m. Sunday

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  171. August Prayer List by

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    August Prayer List

    “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” –Romans 12:12

    We are rejoicing in hope. May we also be patient in tribulation, and constant in prayer. God wants to hear from His people! Pray with us this August for the future of The Rock, and for us to realize our goal of winning to Christ one life at a time, and one world in our lifetime. Read more →

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  172. Waking Up by

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    Typically, the best day of the week for me is Sunday. Not only do I have the day off from my day job, but I get to spend eight hours with my one year old son, while my wife is at work. The best part of the day is when my son wakes up from his morning nap. I open his bedroom door and he is standing there with a huge smile on his face waiting for me to rush over and pick him up, give him a kiss and play with him. Read more →

    We are always both so happy to see each other!

    Last week, he slept an hour longer than he normally does. Instead of me walking in to see a smiling and happy baby, I was confronted with a snoring and limp child who had no intention of waking up anytime soon! The fact that he was sleeping so late made me a little anxious because all I wanted to do was wake him up so I could see his smile, give him a hug and play with him.

    As I sat in his room waiting for him to wake up, I was able to spend some time in prayer with the Lord. I had been feeling that my relationship with God had been a little dry lately; that I wasn’t growing or feeling changed when reading my Bible. God used that time to speak to me! As I sat there and watched my son sleeping, I felt like God gave me some insight into His heart for us as His children. God is ALWAYS available to us, waiting for us to wake up and to have us get excited when we see Him approaching. God spoke to my heart and told me to wake up! He reminded me of this verse in Ephesians, “Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.” Ephesians 5:14b (ESV)

    That was amazing to me! Wake up, open your eyes, God will meet you, and Christ will shine upon you! In my quiet times before the Lord I realized that I need to wake up and open my eyes. I need to look for Christ, expect Him to be there, and believe the promise of God — that He will shine upon me. Arise, and Christ will shine upon you, too!

    Watching the door for Christ to come through,

    Austin

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  173. Sandy move to Noah’s by

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    It was a bittersweet moment as we packed up our Sandy church building and moved into a temporary meeting location at Noah’s Event Venue (322 W 11000 S). God is doing amazing things at The Rock Church and we know that it is about the people and not the building! Read more →

    Starting on July 27, we will continue our services at 9:30 and 11:15 a.m. with the same programs. We will be meeting at Noah’s until we complete our new building, which is just up the street from Noah’s, in Draper. We have an estimated date of completion for our new building for the beginning of October!

    Stayed tuned for more details about our new building and if you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me!

    Pastor Bill Young

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  174. LAST CHURCH SERVICE IN SANDY! by

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    It’s hard to believe, but it’s finally time for our last service in Sandy!

    Come join us this Sunday, July 13, for a special one hour service starting at 10:00 AM (there is only ONE service this Sunday).

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    Please come ready to share stories of thanksgiving and praise for what God has done over the past 12 years in our Sandy location. Right after the service we will move everything out of our building into storage trucks. It’s a work day!

    Pizza will be served around 12:15 (or so).

    Remember – there will be NO regular services on Sunday July 20 – only ministry leaders need to come to Noah’s (322 W 11000 S, South Jordan, UT 84095) at 10:00 AM for a “dry run” (9:30 AM for Set Up Roadies).

    See you there!

    Pastor Bill Young

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  175. Changed Life by

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    In May, I had the opportunity to go to Europe on a mission trip. That was the fourth trip I had been on and God was very kind to teach me something. During my quiet time on the plane, I read in Mark Chapter 5, where Jesus cast out the legion of demons in the country of Gerasenes. Read more →

    The story itself was awesome, but it was what Jesus said to the man that really struck me. Right after he cast out the demons, the man asked to follow Jesus.

    19 And he did not permit him but said to him, “Go home to your friends and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.” 20 And he went away and began to proclaim in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him, and everyone marveled.”

    What struck me in those verses was the simplicity of the Gospel. Jesus told the man to go home and tell his friends and family what the Lord had done! That’s all he asked him to do – open his mouth and share. It is so easy for me to get caught up in the details and insecurities of sharing my faith: “How do I share without offending someone?” or “What if they don’t accept what I say?” Jesus doesn’t’ want me to worry so much about that. Jesus didn’t tell that man, “Go and study what the prophets said about me.” or “Make sure you learn the best way to share the Gospel from this specific book.” He said to go home and tell others what the Lord had done.

    It’s the same for you — you already know your story — it’s what Jesus has done in your life. Go tell someone. Once Jesus saves you, you’re like that man; you need to tell others about Him. Go home and tell your friends what the Lord has done for you! It’s that simple. Just open your mouth.

    One practical way to share your story is to write it out. Take some time and write out what God has done for you, print some copies and share them. Hand them out. Post them on your social media pages. Let others know what the Lord has done for you! How can you share your story?

    Changed by Jesus –

    Tony

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  176. Unlikeliest by

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    unlikeliest by Steve McInroy

    I was recently struck by how God sometimes seems to choose the most unlikeliest of people to save. Even some of my dearest friends in the faith are people I never would have, in my wildest dreams, thought would become Christians. Read more →

    God changes lives and it is simply miraculous. His unconditional love is available to anyone and everyone on the planet. Even if I follow Job’s example and complain about certain people, it doesn’t affect the outcome of their eternity. Only God can do that.

    In Acts, Chapter 8, we read about a man named Simon who practiced magic and apparently had a bit of a following. He misled people, and even though it may have seemed harmless (we don’t know what kind of magic it was), his mistake could have been not the magic he practiced, but when he took credit and claimed to be something like a god and deceived people into seeing him as something more than he was. Even so, God in his great mercy, decided to change Simon. Acts 8:13 “Even Simon himself believed, and after being baptized he continued with Philip. And seeing signs and great miracles performed, he was amazed.”

    Honestly, I consider myself to be one of the most unlikeliest of candidates to deserve God’s grace, yet I’m so thankful to be covered by it. Let’s be men and women who see people the way God does and never gives up on His ability to change people. Even that one guy or gal, and you know who I’m talking about, or let’s just say God knows who you’re thinking about. Pray them into heaven.

    Unlikeliest and loving it,

    Mac

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  177. NO REGULAR SERVICES IN SANDY THIS WEEKEND! by

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    Just a reminder to those who attend the Sandy campus – we’ve gone camping this weekend! We won’t have any regular services Sunday, June 15. We will instead meet at our Campground at 9:30 AM for a short sweet service – feel free to join us at the Anderson Cove Campground! Read more →

    We’ll be back in Sandy on June 22 for our regular services.

    God bless!

    Bill

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  178. Doctrine Error by

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    Doctrine Error

    The other day, I was struck by Acts 18:26. Let’s read the verse in its context.

    Acts 18:24 “Now a Jew named Apollos, a native of Alexandria, came to Ephesus. He was an eloquent man, competent in the Scriptures. 25 He had been instructed in the way of the Lord. And being fervent in spirit, he spoke and taught accurately the things concerning Jesus, though he knew only the baptism of John. 26 He began to speak boldly in the synagogue, Read more →

    but when Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately. 27 And when he wished to cross to Achaia, the brothers encouraged him and wrote to the disciples to welcome him. When he arrived, he greatly helped those who through grace had believed, 28 for he powerfully refuted the Jews in public, showing by the Scriptures that the Christ was Jesus.”

    Apollos was publicly teaching incorrect doctrine regarding baptism! “What?! It’s time to start a blistering, online rebuke of him. Apollos might have known the Old Testament, but he didn’t understand a fundamental aspect of Christian doctrine… baptism! For crying out loud!” That gifted, passionate man was publicly teaching incorrect doctrine! We tend to ‘go to war’ against others for a lot less than false doctrine!

    Now Apollos demonstrated humility to learn from that tentmaker and his wife, but I was struck by Priscilla and Aquila’s methods, also. First, that couple actually listened to him speak; then they took him aside (i.e., privately!), and then they instructed him further. We may think, “But Apollos has a public ministry, so he should be corrected in the public arena!” Apparently Priscilla and Aquila didn’t agree with our modern sentiment. That godly couple didn’t slander him to others; they didn’t protest him as a false teacher! They simply spoke to him in private. Instructing young Christians privately is a very good deed!

    Josh

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  179. Are you ready for DTC14 (Formerly HSLT)? by

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    Dear Youth and Parents!

    Here are the details for this year’s HSLT (which will be called DTC14 – Discipleship Training Camp 2014 rather than HSLT this year).

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    The New Name
    HSLT has become Discipleship Training Camp! This time together will be much the same as past HSLTs, but will be unique in that we will be at a camp in the wilderness… this will provide more time/space for seeking time alone with the Lord and participating in intimate fellowship. Also, we will not be spending time on some activities we’ve planned in the past (evangelism, canvassing, outreach BBQs, etc).

    This year’s theme will be Discovering the Me that Jesus Sees training camp. Training camps are places where dedicated athletes – soldiers – revolutionaries – learn, work, and train to be the very best at what they have given their whole lives to. Jesus calls His followers “disciples”, which is also a word for someone who is dedicated first of all to one thing, One Person.

    DTC14 is a Discipleship Training Camp – a time to focus on knowing God and knowing who He has made us to be. It’s a time to learn, to seek, and to practice what it means to walk with God.

    DTC14 is happening in the Snowy Range mountains, Wyoming, at Table in the Wilderness Camp. The facilities will be more rustic and the schedule will be somewhat different than HSLTs in the past. There will be a focus on a personal relationship with God and on understanding the identity God has given all of us.

    DTC14 is open to incoming high school freshmen through graduating seniors. The Camp will start with dinner on Thursday evening, July 10, and will end after breakfast on Sunday, July 13.

    Summary of some important details for you:

    • Cost: $99 for each Student and Adult
    • Dates: July 10-13
    • Retreat Location and Environment – Table in the Wilderness – 38 Old State Highway 130 Centennial, WY 82055. As noted in the name of this retreat (CAMP), this event will have a more rustic, roughing-it atmosphere than past HSLTs – rooming arrangements will range from bunk houses to outdoor wall tents with cots. You/your family have the option of bringing your own camping equipment or even an RV or camper if you’d like.
    • REGISTER TODAY (Deadline June 30)! Don’t wait – register at www.mwrgc.org/dtc14.

    Looking forward to seeing you in the “wilderness!”

    Mr. Young

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  180. Simply Sow during Easter! by

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    Easter 2014 at The Rock Church

    Our Simply Sow series has been challenging and a great reminder to just simply sow seeds of the Gospel and let God take care of the rest! With Easter coming up this weekend, we wanted to give you at The Rock Church a few easy ways to simply sow to your friends, family or co-workers by having Easter invite cards at our services. Read more →

    These are an easy way to get the church info into their hands. If you grabbed a few stacks, make sure to get rid of them because after this weekend they will not be useful. Here are a few ways to get rid of them.

    1. Take them and invite your neighbors.
    2. Pass them out to people you encounter as you go about your day.
    3. Post them on the announcement boards at your work, gym or local coffee shops.

    If you happen to not be there and missed out grabbing some cards, we have created some great digital pieces that you can use on your social media!

    Facebook:
    Use this image (click on it actual size and save to your device or computer) as your Cover and then you can also directly give an invite by sharing one of the Events.

    Easter 2014 at The Rock Church

    Friday in Provo
    Saturday in Salt Lake City
    Sunday in Sandy and Provo
    Sunrise service at the Draper property

    Instagram/Twitter:
    Use this image (click on it actual size and save to your device or computer) for your instagram feed and use the comment section to invite people to church.

    Easter 2014 at The Rock Church

    Pray that God blesses all the invites! Have other creative ideas? Share them in the comments section and see you this weekend!

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  181. Lasko Grant by

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    Lasko Grant - The Rock Church

    We have amazing news for you – are you sitting down? Read more →

    God has seen fit to bless us with a grant (gift) for up to $486,000 for the construction of our new worship space that we are currently building in Draper! We are NOT kidding! We just got an email from the senior vice president of the John C. Lasko grant (the grant we’ve been praying for) letting us know the good news. God is so kind to us! Why not thank Him right now for His amazing, extravagant blessings. Here is a great verse that reminds us of God’s provision: “See, I am sending an angel ahead of you to guard you along the way and to bring you to the place I have prepared.” (Exodus 23:20) Amen! God is providing and leading us!

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  182. Building Update – March 31, 2014 by

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    building update

    We are excited that the steel has been delivered to the land and it will go up this week! This will add great visual to the project, most of the work that has been done has been on the ground. Now you will see the building start to take shape. Read more →

    The steel construction crew will be on the land all this week and our Appreciation Team will be there to serve them. Because the graffiti party was cancelled, you are welcome to go sign the steel girders when the construction workers are on-site, and the steel to be signed is set aside, by the work trailer.

    Please take some time and pray for these things for the construction:

    • Safety for the workers
    • Finances for the church
    • Good weather for construction
    • That the steel workers can come to know Christ

    We also have a special need on Saturday April 12. We need twelve men that can spread gravel. Underneath the concrete slab of the church, we need to spread gravel 4″ thick. We need the volunteers to be there all day to do this! Please sign up on the volunteer list at church if you would like to help, or contact Tony Rehmer.

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  183. Building Update – March 21, 2014 by

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    Building Update — March 21, 2014

    Well, work is progressing rapidly! We are still pouring footings – should finish this week. All of our steel will be delivered next week and put up the week after that! Don’t miss out on the many opportunities to help with the building. Read more →

    We have 3 specific teams/areas where we need help. We have a Prayer Team to pray for safety, the workers come to know Christ, good weather, our finances, etc. We have an Appreciation Team to show God’s love through food, coffee, water, signs, messages, notes, and cards. We have a Volunteer Team to help lighten the load of work on site. They will be cleaning, sweeping and when they can, helping with construction. This team probably won’t be doing any of the actual building, but maybe unboxing lights, carrying drywall, or laying carpet squares, etc.

    Please note that there are Bibles at each campus that we want everyone in our congregations to sign, put notes in, write a message, or underline their favorite verse. These Bibles will be buried in the concrete at each corner of the building. We will also be having a “Holy Graffiti” party Sunday, March 30 from 1:00 – 2:00p.m. on site. We can sign the steel girders, write verses, notes to God, or notes to the construction workers. It will be a fun party that you won’t want to miss. Contact Tony Rehmer if you are interested in serving.

    Bill

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  184. 2013 Financial Report by

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    God never ceases to amaze us when it comes to providing financially for the church and 2013 was no exception. The Rock Church stepped out in faith in many ways last year to make strides to win Utah and the world for Jesus. We started our Roots 2.0 capital campaign to raise funds to construct a building on our land in Draper, Read more →

    where we had 213 pledges in the amount of $1,690,000. In just 8 months of that campaign you generously donated $593,000. In 2013 we spent $212,000 on missions; international and local. Part of our mission statement at The Rock Church is to send believers to the ends of the earth to spread the good news of Jesus Christ. In 2013 we sent teams to Honduras and Romania to do just that. As the year came to an end we did have to use $38,000 of our savings for general operations. When I first did the calculations and arrived at this number my first reaction was slight dismay but I was quickly reminded of all the amazing things God had provided for in 2013; 3 new staff members, 4 TRM albums given away for free, and $130,000 given away to organizations and churches outside of our own. Although we had to take money out of savings, we spent it on events and things that furthered the gospel.

    As we kick off 2014 we have made a few changes and are researching different ways that we can effectively use the financial blessings that the Lord has provided. The first update for 2014 is a change in address for mailing your financial gifts and tithe. The new address is:

    353 S 800 W
    Provo, UT 84601

    This is an important change to take note of if you use Bill Pay through your bank. If that is you, please contact your bank and update the mailing address for those checks. Second, we are looking into ways to minimize our PayPal fees. PayPal offers a great service but they do take 3% of the donations to the church. There is a way to use PayPal without any fees that requires linking your bank account information as opposed to your debit or credit card. If you are interested in using PayPal in this fashion please contact me, brent@experiencetherock.com, and I will help walk you through how to set this up. There are also some other options we are researching to replace PayPal. Lastly, the Annual Financial Report for 2013 is now available. You can pick up a printed copy of the report at any of the Storefront locations or you may download an electronic copy.

    “As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy.” -1 Timothy 6:17

    Brent

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  185. Building Permit! by

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    Draper Building Permit

    Well, the exciting day has finally come! After literally months of hard work, we received our official “Building Permit” on Wednesday and we can press ahead full steam with our building project in Draper (see pictures image of the progress here)! Thank you again for all your prayers, support, and sacrifice to make this happen. Lives will be different because you gave!

    Also, just a reminder to please attend our Ground Breaking ceremony this Sunday, March 2 from 2-3:00 p.m. on the property (11630 S 700 E). See you Sunday!

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  186. Prepared by

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    Prepared, a word from pastor Bill Young

    “See, I am sending an angel ahead of you to guard you along the way and to bring you to the place I have prepared.” — Exodus 23:20 (NIV)

    I read this verse last week in my quiet time. What an exciting visual — God’s angels leading the way to a place Jesus has prepared for our church. I have been claiming this verse for a “home of our own” — our own Sandy/Draper facility — since 2006. Read more →

    It was encouraging to read my notes from years past regarding this special promise that God gave me. Here are a few things I wrote in the margins of my Bible next to this verse:

    • “God will prepare, protect, and provide us with a building at the proper time” (not dated)
    • “Promise for Sandy building” (February 6, 2008)
    • “Ditto” (February 6, 2013)
    • “Got Land Disturbance permit February 5, 2014!”

    Wow! Getting our own building has indeed been a dream for a long time. We know it will bring legitimacy, stability, and opportunity like never before. This influence will translate into more salvations, baptisms, and changed lives!

    It’s hard to believe that the dream is quickly becoming a reality. Since last week, the excavators have been on our property changing the landscape, leveling earth, burying power line conduit and rapidly preparing us to begin building a home of our own! God is so good!

    I just want to take this time to thank God, and all of you who have prayed, given sacrificially, and worked so hard to make this facility a reality. God will honor your labors of love and your faith. Many lives will be changed, challenged, and forever influenced because of you.

    Finally, I want to encourage you to attend our official Groundbreaking Ceremony scheduled for Sunday, March 2 from 2:00-3:00p.m. at the Draper property. It’s our opportunity to officially kick off what will prove to be one of the most exciting chapters in the history of The Rock Church. God’s angels are going before us to prepare this place — won’t you join us as well?

    Excited,

    Bill

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  187. West Valley Church by

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    West Valley Church

    Please pray, church! This is a very exciting season. Pray for our new pastors! Pray for the Draper building construction process. Pray we can stay in Sandy as long as possible. Pray for the West Valley church plant!

    We had over 75 people join us at our West Valley church plant info meeting Saturday night! Read more →

    As a church, we have a goal of 20 services by the year 2020, and a church plant is a key part of this. West Valley is the second largest city in the state and there are too few churches there! The need is huge in West Valley and everywhere in our state, for more churches that preach the gospel. At the info meeting, we talked about possible locations and the timeline, answered some questions and spent some time praying. It was very encouraging to be in a room full of people contemplating stepping out in faith to be part of this church plant.

    The church plant will need people that are servants, prayer warriors, evangelists, but mainly we need workers.

    “And Jesus went throughout all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction. 36 When He saw the crowds, He had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. 37 Then He said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; 38 therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.” — Matthew 9:35-38

    Church, please pray God builds a team of men and women who are willing and able to be laborers for the gospel! If you are interested in being part of this team or would like to learn more, please email me.

    Josh

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  188. February Prayer List by

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    “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” –Romans 12:12

    We are on the edge of a lot of really exciting things happening this year at The Rock. We are recognizing three new deacons, and five new pastors who have already been investing their lives into the church for quite some time. This is a big deal for us, and it is just the start of a very busy 2014. We are sending out missionaries to Honduras, Romania, Italy, and Poland. We are building a church home in Draper, planting a church, and continuing to be missionaries in our own community. We are remaining faithful in God to provide us with the funds to accomplish this vision. Read more →

    We are rejoicing in hope. May we also be patient in tribulation, and constant in prayer. God wants to hear from His people! Pray with us this February for the future of The Rock, and for us to realize our goal of winning to Christ one life at a time, and one world in our lifetime.

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  189. Leadership Announcement by

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    Leadership Announcement

    Hello Rock Church!

    We have some very exciting news! After much prayer and counsel, we feel that the Holy Spirit is leading us to recognize and appoint five new pastors (same as “Elder”) and three new deacons. From the Salt Lake campus, we are planning on recognizing Austin Fredrickson, Billy Johnson, Bryan Edwards and Tony D’Amico as pastors (initially bi-vocational). Read more →

    From the Sandy campus, we are planning on recognizing Andrew Hale and Troy Morrison as deacons. And from the Provo campus, we are planning on recognizing Caleb Yetton (initially bi-vocational) as a pastor and Ramsey DeGeare as a deacon. These men are leading and significantly serving Jesus at The Rock in a variety of ways including: music, small groups, life groups, house churches, connections and other ministries. We plan on recognizing all eight of these men during our regular church service on Saturday, February 1, 2014. Please plan on joining us at this church wide celebration!

    We are presenting this information for the purpose of getting input from the church. If you have concerns or praise regarding the character or ability of any of these men to adequately fulfill these leadership roles, please contact one of the current pastors before February 1st. And please be praying, this is a very exciting chapter in the history of The Rock!

    Taking ground with you –

    Bill, Mac, Steele and Josh

    Here are a list of the men…

    This is Caleb Yetton.

    Caleb Yetton (Provo Pastor)

    Caleb was born in Rhode Island and became a Christian as a young boy. He got serious about the Lord after graduating from high school. He has been attending The Rock for almost seven years. He has been married to Kelsea for about five years. They have two boys, Abel and Henry. Caleb works at the State DMV and loves playing music and the Red Sox. Caleb currently serves as a deacon at our Provo campus.

    This is Austin Fredrickson.

    Austin Fredrickson (SLC Pastor)

    Austin was born in Michigan and became a Christian as a young boy. He has been attending The Rock for five and a half years. He has been married to Lydia for almost three years. They have a son named Hezekiah. Austin works as an architect and enjoys sailing, hiking, music and wood working.

    This is Billy Johnson.

    Billy Johnson (SLC Pastor)

    Billy was born in Utah. He first started attending The Rock and became a Christian a little over eight years ago. He has been married to Ashley for six years. They have three kids, Will, Eden and Ruth. Billy works as an electrician and loves writing riffs, arm wrestling and fixing things. Billy currently serves as a deacon at our Salt Lake campus.

    This is Bryan Edwards.

    Bryan Edwards (SLC Pastor)

    Bryan was born in Utah. He came to The Rock around seven years ago and became a Christian shortly thereafter. He has been married to Celisse for four years. They have a son named Wesley. Bryan works as a beer salesman and loves reading, eating, sleeping and hopes to grow facial hair someday. Bryan currently serves as a deacon at our Salt Lake campus.

    This is Tony D'Amico.

    Tony D’Amico (SLC Pastor)

    Tony was born in New Jersey. He was raised in a Christian home, but God really started getting a hold of his heart eleven years ago. He has been attending The Rock for almost ten years. Tony has been married to Shannon for over ten years. They have two boys, Leo and Gianni. Tony works as the Creative Director of The Rock and enjoys running and food. Tony currently serves as a deacon at our Salt Lake campus.

    This is Ramsey DeGeare.

    Ramsey DeGeare (Provo Deacon)

    Ramsey was born in Ohio. His family moved to California, where he did most of his living, until he moved to Utah in 2003. He has been attending The Rock since 2007. Ramsey became a Christian in 2008. He has been married to Janice for two years. He works as a plumber and loves anything outside, from the beach to the mountains.

    This is Andrew Hale.

    Andrew Hale (Sandy Deacon)

    Andrew was born in Utah. He accepted Christ in the eighth grade, and has been going to The Rock for nine years. Andrew and his wife, Erica, have been married nearly 18 years and enjoy spending time with their three kids; Isaiah, Sarah and Rachel. Andrew works as a licensed financial service representative, but has been known to moonlight as a photographer and barista. He loves playing the bass, hiking, and spending time with family and friends.

    This is Troy Morrison.

    Troy Morrison (Sandy Deacon)

    Troy was born in California. He came to know Jesus as a teenager, but re-dedicated his life to Jesus fifteen years ago, just before marrying his wife, Jamison. The family moved to Utah in 2007, and Troy has been serving The Rock since then. Their family has grown to five children: Samuel, Dane, Marley, Phoebe, and Titus. Troy works as a general contractor, laborer, and caterer. He enjoys camping, fishing, cooking, and building.

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  190. Looking Back! by

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    Looking Back at 2013 and Taking Ground in 2014

    It says in Psalms 77:11-12 “I will remember the deeds of the LORD; yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago. I will meditate on all your works and consider all your mighty deeds.”

    Looking back on all that God has done at the Rock in 2013 gives us hope for the all he has for us in the future! Looking back also makes us thankful and expectant for the amazing things we will Read more →

    see him do for our church in 2014. Here are just few of the amazing works that God accomplished through our church last year. Be encouraged!

    Here is a list of stats and if you missed the message, give it a listen!

    EVENTS

    • Roots 2.0
    • Childcare remodel downtown
    • Pastors Conference with Leaf Anderson
    • Marriage Retreat with Charlie & Rox Meyer
    • Many weddings and babies born!
    • 3 different Christmas Programs
    • Faithwalkers

    OUTREACH

    • Nick Vujicic events & video showing at our locations, resulting in 25 decisions for Christ that weekend!
    • Mission to the City
    • Romania Trip
    • Honduras Trip
    • Provo Just Do It!
    • My Hope event with Billy Graham (downtown alone had 20 events, 70 unsaved, 2 salvations and 20 salvations between Provo and Sandy!)
    • 230 shoe boxes given away through Operation Christmas Child
    • Mission to the City outreach throughout the month of June 6-7: About 60 people participated in outreach events at Salt Lake Bees games, Temple Square, and Gateway Mall. Over 5,000 invite cards were distributed resulting in good spiritual conversations and new visitors to The Rock.
    • June 10-15: Almost 90 volunteers took part in several service projects including a construction project with Habitat for Humanity and a deep cleaning of the downtown church building. Many were sore and fatigued but displayed cheerful hearts, saying “it was a privilege to serve.”
    • June 22-24: Around 60 people sowed more seeds of the Gospel with additional trips to Temple Square, Gateway Mall, and the Bees games. They also conducted a $1 car wash, but instead of taking a dollar from customers they GAVE them a dollar — along with snacks, invite cards, and information about Jesus.
    • June 25-28: Volunteers visited Rescue Mission of Salt Lake, taking part in their worship service as well as serving dinner to more than 450 homeless people. They also sorted baby items for Pregnancy Resource Center in addition to conducting a toiletries drive for Utah Aids Foundation, providing shampoo, conditioner, lotion, tissues, and toilet paper. May God use all these activities to bring honor and glory to His great name!

    SALVATIONS & BAPTISMS

    • 20 salvations from Nick Vujicic weekend
    • 32 salvations Easter weekend.
    • Honduras salvations (~10-20 total)
    • 50 salvations throughout our regular church services.
    • An estimated 24 baptisms!
    • 20 salvations over My Hope weekend

    MINISTRY

    • 120 people participated in Memory Madness with over 2,000 bible verses memorized through the program!
    • The Rock helped with finding camp counselors for the Royal Family Kids Camp
    • 1,443 combined HC/SG/Life group meetings small group meetings for the sake of growing in Jesus
    • 72 leader meetings training leaders for the Glory of Jesus.
    • The biggest attended year we have had in House Churches and Small Groups
    • New staff hires
    • Revive overnighter
    • College outreach started
    • 175 kids participated in High School Leadership Training Conference (HSLTC). They learned how to live, defend, and share their faith.
    • 25 additional people within our church sponsored 120 Compassion International children who will be given the Gospel, shelter, food and education
    • 255 worship services, teaching and proclaiming the name of Jesus
    • 716 Sunday School lessons teaching children about Jesus
    • 7,000 communion participants
    • 52 separate E-Rock Church newsletters were written and sent; read a combined 20,000 times!
    • ~400 servants served in TRC in 2012

    TEACHINGS

    • 7 Deadly Lies series downtown
    • LOST series in Sandy
    • Why Church series in Provo
    • The Simply Sow campaign Gospel presentations throughout the whole year
    • An expositional teaching through the book of Acts entitled Simply Sow

    NEW BUILDING/ROOTS 2

    • We were donated geotech/civil supplies for new building.
    • 200 people at Draper land event
    • UDOT approval on 700 east
    • Paul Jackson part time staff at University of Utah
    • Run for The Rock
    • Draper building loan approval
    • An unanimous Building approval from the Draper planning commission

    THE ROCK MUSIC

    • Increased music downloads and give-aways (four EPs with 21 songs in total)
    • The Rock Music hosted a listening room, inviting the community to come and preview music before it is released
    • The Rock Music hosted two Art Shows and a Youth Outreach concert
    • Three albums given away from come and live to over 90 countries and one album Featured album of the week on Come&Live!
    • Over 521 TRM albums sold at our storefront, Hundreds more songs sold on iTunes and downloaded from our website
    • One album mentioned by Mark Driscoll’s (Mars Hill Church) Facebook and Twitter platforms and listed on the Resurgence blog
    • 1,530 songs sung praising the name of Jesus at all Rock Church locations

    FINANCES

    • Change the World in the spring raised $1,579 for the Pregnancy Resource Center.
    • Change the World raised $7,391 for Romania and Draper, which we doubled with church money.
    • Change the World evening raising ($8,458.)
    • $599,461 2013 Roots donations securing a permanent home of our own in Sandy
    • $98,355 to our regional missions group to help start other local churches, support some missionaries and pastors, as well as contribute to new mission initiatives in the states and abroad worldwide
    • $26,125 toward outside mission efforts, local Christian ministries and national Christian ministries
    • $6,313 to our own local benevolence account where the money is used to help needy families, church members, and homeless folks in the community with food, shelter, rent, mortgage, medical bills, or other areas of need
    • $130,793 total giving from The Rock Church to groups outside of ourselves.

    WEB/MEDIA

    • New Website
    • TRC App (iOS, Android and Windows Mobile): 751 installs
    • 145,871 messages downloaded
    • 20 Songs where given away for free over four EPs
    • 54,109 The Rock Church and the Rock Music unique website visitors
    • 850,000 website page views
    • 16,489 video plays
    • Rise EP promo views featuring Favor and Union: 922
    • At Your Feet – by Paul Porter promo video views: 839

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  191. Faithwalkers by

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    This last December, all the saints from the GCC Mountains West Region were invited to Grand Junction, Colorado from December 27-30 to the Faithwalkers Conference. This conference is such a great way to end the year with a concentrated time of messages, worship and fellowship. This year 650 saints showed up and it was a tremendous blessing to be together as the larger body of Christ! Read more →

    All that attended were given the opportunity, to connect with God without the distractions of everyday life, to attend 9 main sessions (the theme for this year was Jesus: His Life, His Mission), coupled with dynamic worship from Hayden, Steele, and Travis (from the Fort Collins church), and numerous seminars centered on a variety of topics from creation to parenting. And of course the time to catch up with old friends, make new ones

    At least one person from Utah encountered Jesus in a profound way by receiving Jesus’ free gift of salvation!

    The messages have been uploaded and are ready for you to listen to.

    Thank you Lord and were looking forward to next time!

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  192. January Prayer List by

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    “The Christian life is not a constant high. I have my moments of deep discouragement. I have to go to God in prayer with tears in my eyes, and say, ‘O God, forgive me,’ or ‘Help me.’” –Billy Graham

    We are a couple days into 2014 now. You might have even taken down your Christmas tree and quit making cookies, and you are willing to try eating vegetables for the first time since the green bean casserole at Thanksgiving. You’ve got your one year Read more →

    Bible plan out and you are ready to take on this year! But it only takes about two minutes on Facebook, or a text or email from a good friend to know that we are all facing the same battles that we were a couple weeks ago. Our relationship with the Lord is vital to equipping us for the fight. Our invaluable time spent reading the Word, and our moments praying to the merciful Creator of the universe, are two of the greatest ways we can find comfort in our trials and protect ourselves from the arrows of the enemy. Maybe it starts with just five minutes a day, and it grows. We grow.

    We just spent an entire month celebrating the birth of our King, and the dawn of His redeeming grace. He wants to talk to us. He wants to hear our status updates more than anyone! He bought us at a tremendous price and wants to have a relationship with us. With no barriers in between us, we can simply pray to Him.

    James 5:16 says that the “prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” (NIV) Please be praying for your brothers and sisters; for your family!

    One simple way to start today would be to download, print, or view The Rock Church’s Prayer List. We put it out monthly, and want you to be joining us in asking God to bless and grow us as a body of believers. Start a habit of praying with us each day by putting it up on your fridge, throwing a copy of it into your Bible, or reading our status updates on Facebook.

    Let’s get equipped together to fight our battles in 2014 by going to God first.

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  193. Happy New Year! by

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    A new year often motivates people to start something new and can also give us a sense of relief when we get a chance to start over. Out goes Old Man 2013 and in comes the Young Hope of 2014. Lose weight, pray more, stop smoking, start budgeting, help others, share your faith, clean your car, read your Bible, spend more time with your kids, and on and on. These are all fine things to strive for and if a New Year’s resolution helps you get there, then I say go for it. Like a fresh coat of snow covers up the dead browns of fall, we see things anew and the possibilities in the future seem endless.
    Read more →

    I don’t want to be a party pooper but I want to cautiously say I have experienced a letdown or two over the years. The beautiful snow melts to reveal the ugliness of neglect, and yes at least in my yard, the dog poop is still there because I didn’t clean it up. God is helping me learn to accept things as they are or even to hold onto things a little more loosely than I have in the past. I’m trying to see every day as a new beginning.

    “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.” — Lamentations 3:22-23

    I am so thankful God’s love never ceases, and every day in Christ has unending possibilities. I am a born-again Christian and those of us who understand the depth of that statement, see things new. We are really “good to go” because in all reality we have already stepped into eternity with Jesus. Our destiny is eternity! This changes everything and maybe the more appropriate salutation I could give you is “HAPPY ETERNITY and enjoy the ride!”

    2 Peter 3:18 says, “But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity.” Amen.

    One day at a time,

    Mac

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  194. One-Year Reading Plans by

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    The Rock Church, One Year Reading Plan

    But he answered, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” Matthew 4:4

    With the new year approaching, we all are thinking about resolutions we want to make. One of those might be reading through our Bibles or having better quiet times, but reading through the entire Bible can seem like a nearly impossible task. To assist you, there are some really cool resources out there that I want to share that can help give you a plan with your quiet times over this next year. There are a ton reading plans out there, so I thought I would start you out with a few to choose from if you have never gone through one before. Read more →

    THROUGH-THE-BIBLE READING PLANS

    If you want to get through the Bible in one year here are three plans that can work for you. They only take about 15 minutes a day of reading and are a great way to complete the task.

    • ONE YEAR READING PLAN: This plan consists in reading a little bit from the Old Testament, New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs. This gives every day variety in your reading. Download, print off and use the reading plan as a bookmark or a checklist.
    • THE ONE YEAR CHRONOLOGICAL BIBLE: This plan is arranged in the order the events actually occurred. This is also based reading every day broken up by selected readings. It is a very interesting way to see how all the events correlate throughout the Bible. Download, print off and use the reading plan as a bookmark or a checklist.
    • THE DISCIPLESHIP JOURNAL BIBLE READING PLAN: This plan is very similar to the One Year Reading Plan in that you read a little bit from the Old Testament, New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs, except this is a five-day-a-week reading plan. This gives you some flexibility in your reading throughout the week. Download, print off and use the reading plan as a bookmark or a checklist.

    SECTIONS OF THE BIBLE

    If taking on the entire Bible seems too much, here are some options that focus on specific sections of the Bible.

    RESOURCES

    This is a list of various reading plans.

    And remember to always pray before your quiet times, ask God to speak to you directly from the Scriptures that you are reading. Let God continually redefine your attitude and behavior as you read through the Living Word.

    Let Your Life Be Renewed –

    Tony

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  195. Rejoice Merchandise by

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    Hey Rock Church!

    This year our focus has been to Simply Sow the Gospel and with Christmas around the corner, we have a great opportunity to share the Grace of Jesus Christ. To help, we have made some great items that will point people to Jesus and a local church.
    Read more →

    First, we created a pack of Christmas cards. One card has a simple Christmas message and another with a gospel presentation. They come in packs of five or a mixed pack for $5 a pack.

    In the sprit of giving, The Rock Music is releasing a free Christmas E.P. on November 29 and we have download cards that you can put inside your Christmas cards or give to friends, family or co-workers.

    In addition to all of this, we have location specific invite cards that you can also use to invite people to a service during the weekend before Christmas.

    Another great gift and simply sow idea is to give the gift of music. We will have six of our TRM CDs, for only $30. You will get Anything, Captured by Grace, Rev. I, Rev. II, Promises, and Alive. That is only $5 a CD!

    Lastly, we all need great art in our homes. We have these letterpress printed images that come free when you purchase the 6 CD pack or for $15 each.

    You can pick up these items at the Storefronts at all locations.

    How can you Simply Sow this Season and we hope you have a Merry Christmas.

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  196. Pre-Construction Stewardship Linkage Survey by

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    For those that are interested in filling out the Pre-Construction Stewardship Linkage Survey, take a few moments to read this letter from Joe Morello (BGW Contractor).
    Read more →

    Dear Rock Church family members,

    The success of the Building God’s Way process is further enhanced through our collective ability to identify and embrace those within The Rock family and your surrounding local communities who have the Lord’s blessings and gifts to provide construction services and the ability to supply materials and/or equipment in support of the construction phase. You are all an extremely important part of this process and we seek your help.

    Here is a list of the tasks and information we seek. Your thoughts with regards to helping us identify an individual or business that could possibly support the church with these needs is greatly appreciated. PLEASE DO NOT CONTACT THEM DIRECTLY. BGW|CS will review your submittals and then move forward with these suggestions by way of “Vision Casting” / “Pre-Construction Stewardship” meetings.

    We would, of course, prefer individuals or businesses that already have a heart for the church and its ministry, but it is not required as you support this request. Likewise, it is not required that they subscribe to our faith-based beliefs. At our VC/PCS outreach meetings, The Rock’s vision will be presented, and through prayer for all who attend, we will trust our Lord to move within each of them.

    We are all extremely thankful for your consideration of supporting this next step. Once again, please remember that you are being asked not to contact any of those individuals or businesses directly. God’s blessings to you all.

    Your Brother in Christ,

    Joe Morello, Managing Partner
    BGW Construction Services, LLC

    FILL OUT SURVEY

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  197. Time by

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    This week God’s word will be shared with possibly more living people than at any other time in history. In cooperation with the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, the people of churches across the United States and Canada will be given the tools and opportunity to view and listen to a gospel presentation by Billy Graham himself.
    Read more →

    We can expect Billy Graham to share from the Bible and we can expect God’s word to accomplish its purpose. A couple fantastic verses that affirm this truth are:

    “So shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.” — Isaiah 55:11

    “For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” — Hebrews 4:12

    What a great opportunity this is for Christians everywhere to rally around this historic sharing of truth. Billy Graham has been a faithful servant of God for many years and will celebrate his 95th birthday on Thursday. Major networks and headlines will be not be able to squelch this major event. It reminds me of the time in the Book of Esther when Mordecai encourages Esther to speak up for the Jews.

    “For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” — Esther 4:14

    Perhaps along with Billy Graham and his associates this week, you and I have also been positioned for such a time as this. Share Christ with as many people as God gives you opportunity, and pray for God to move mightily in our midst. Maybe more than ever, right now, we need Jesus!

    Praying with you and for you,

    Mac

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  198. Persecution by

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    Recently, I read an informative and sad article about the persecution of Christians around the world. Here are some excerpts:

    According to the International Society for Human Rights, a secular [group], 80 percent of all acts of religious discrimination in the world today are directed at Christians. Statistically speaking, that makes Christians by far the most persecuted religious body on the planet.
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    According to the Pew Forum, between 2006 and 2010 Christians faced some form of discrimination… in a staggering total of 139 nations, which is almost three-quarters of all the countries on earth.

    According to the Center for the Study of Global Christianity… an average of 100,000 Christians have been killed in what the center calls a situation of witness’ each year for the past decade. That works out to 11 Christians killed somewhere in the world every hour… for reasons related to their faith.

    In our country, where we enjoy so much religious freedom, it is hard to personally connect with these statistics. But a year or two ago, God personally challenged me to be regularly praying for persecuted Christians. So Rock Church, I challenge you: do you regularly pray for our persecuted brothers and sisters around the world? This would be a good prayer: 1 Peter 1:6-7 “In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.”

    Studying the book of Acts has shown us that God uses persecution like this, without fail, to build His kingdom. So pray for God ’s grace in their lives and that His gospel goes forward strongly!

    Josh

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  199. Miracles by

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    “God did extraordinary miracles through Paul, so that even handkerchiefs and aprons that had touched him were taken to the sick, and their illnesses were cured and the evil spirits left them.” (Acts 19:11-12)

    Just before Jesus returns to heaven to take his place at the right hand of God, He gives the disciples these words that echo throughout the entire book of Acts: He said in Acts 1:8 “You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria and to the end of the earth.”
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    Again and again, the power that comes with the witness and makes it life changing is something extraordinary: tongues of fire, sounds of wind (Acts 2:2-3), shaking buildings (Acts 4:31), miraculous healings and relief for the demon possessed.

    Some have asked whether or not we can see miracles like this in our day and age. Personally, I absolutely believe that the Lord can work miracles like this, even today. If you look at what God’s spirit is doing on a global level, we would be amazed at how God is working on behalf of His children for the glory of His name.

    So often we hear others say, or we say ourselves:

    “If God would just perform the same kinds of miracles today, then I would believe in Him.”

    “What happened to the blind seeing and the deaf hearing? What happened to the burning bush, and the parting of the red sea?”

    And because God does not answer how you think He should answer, you don’t believe.

    Here are some things to consider: God always performs the miracles that are just right for the culture and for the person to spark faith, belief, and glory. These miracles always bring recognition not to the receiver, but to God Himself.

    We also know that we have the full revelation of God’s very word in the Bible. Have you opened it? Have you read and scrutinized it?

    If there has been no “amazing” miracle in your life to prove God, it’s simply because God says: “You don’t need it!”

    If you need a miracle to believe in him for salvation, ask Jesus Christ to reveal himself to you.

    Ask Jesus Christ to reveal Himself to you in a miraculous way for you that He sees fit. The Lord is faithful and He will hear your prayer of faith. Our God is a true miracle worker.

    Steele

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  200. Lord of All by

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    “If you love me you will obey me.” 1 John 14:14 (NIV)

    Years ago I remember meeting with a young man in my church and telling him, “I’m sorry, but I can no longer meet with you.” I took a long sip of my coffee and watched as the words I had spoken sunk deeply into the heart of my dear friend across the table. “But why?” came his incredulous reply. “Because you’re not doing what I’ve asked you to do.”
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    Now, don’t get the wrong idea. I am not some overbearing, dictatorial drill sergeant. I can – believe it or not – actually be pretty patient and understanding with people. In this particular case, my friend had asked me to help him grow into a more spiritual Christian. I agreed and we started meeting for greasy egg & sausage sandwiches every week. After finding out more about his desires to grow, I suggested that he start reading the Bible and praying every day. He agreed and asked me to keep him accountable.

    Week after week my young disciple reported that he “hadn’t been able” to read or pray during the preceding days. “Too busy,” was the reason. No matter how much I gently urged him, he just didn’t get it done. I decided that until my friend could prove to me he was serious, I needed to spend my time more wisely.

    God tells us that if we love him we will obey Him. In my experience we always do what we really want to do. We make time for that which seems most important to us. Spending time in God’s Word and prayer are priorities that cannot be compromised. If you feel you’re “too busy” then, well, you’re too busy.

    In the New Testament the Greek word for “Lord”, “kurios”, is used 617 times. It comes from the root word “kuros” which means “Supreme in authority.” Does Jesus have supreme authority in your life? Is he the CEO of all you do? Does he have a say in your schedule? Pencil in an appointment for the “Lord of All” today. He’s dying to meet with you.

    Loving Jesus,

    Bill Young

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  201. My Hope America with Billy Graham by

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    If you missed our special message this week about the My Hope America, give this article a read from Greg Johnson, the Standing Together President and My Hope America State Coordinator.

    On November 7, 8, and 9th here in Utah and across America, Christians have an incredible opportunity to lift up the name of Jesus Christ as the real solution to what ills our nation. At present, America is a dry and thirsty land, a nation who has lost her moral compass, where civility towards one another, respect for truths long held, and foundational Judeo/Christian values have been largely abandoned. America’s present enlightenment has not produced a better quality of individual, greater happiness for the masses, or greater prosperity for a larger number of people. Rather, America’s inner cities are filled with broken homes abandoned by fathers who have left behind families that are hurting financially and without guidance to the children they have deserted. The result of this is increased youth gang activities, violence in schools, drug and alcohol abuse, sexual misconduct, abortion, poverty, depression, and low self-esteem among millions of America’s uncared for children. Elite America, comprised of our celebrities, our business leaders, media moguls, sports figures, university educators, and the well off seem adrift to the core values and spiritual foundations that made this nation a great and blessed country, the envy of the whole world. Middle class America is struggling too, many are unemployed trying to pay their bills, looking for temporary pleasures to dull their pains, deal with their emptiness, and to fill their need for constant entertainment and diversion from reality. Jesus told us in the Bible that he did not come to help the healthy but to help the sick and hurting. If we are agreed that America is now a hurting nation who has walked away from the truths of a loving God, then may I suggest that what America needs most is a spiritual renewal and a revival? Every Christian in this nation can open their home, invite unsaved friends over for a meal, a dessert, or a snack to share a video of hope simply called “The Cross,” featuring America’s Pastor, Billy Graham, calling our nation back to the God of grace, mercy, forgiveness, and love with the message of the Christian Gospel. If we believe that the people of this nation, 60% of who do not regularly attend church, are in need of revival than can we not invite them over to our homes to share Dr. Graham’s message of hope? My prayer is that Christians will not miss this moment, but seize it, for the nation we love, the hurting people of our country, and the glory of the name of our God. My Hope America with Billy Graham is an opportunity to offer living water to quench the thirst of our spiritually dry land, let us then lift the cool waters of hope to everyone we can in early November.

    Greg Johnson
    Standing Together, President
    My Hope America, State Coordinator

    Please take time to watch this informational video to get a feel for the event.

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  202. Resolved by

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    “When Paul and his companions had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a Jewish synagogue. As was his custom, Paul went into the synagogue, and on three Sabbath days he reasoned with them from the Scriptures, explaining and proving that the Messiah had to suffer and rise from the dead. “This Jesus I am proclaiming to you is the Messiah,” he said. Some of the Jews were persuaded and joined Paul and Silas, as did a large number of God-fearing Greeks and quite a few prominent women.” (Acts 17:1-4)
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    As we have studied through the book of Acts, I have been struck by the resolve of the apostle Paul.

    Time and time again we see in this tremendous letter (and in many of the New Testament Epistles) that Paul was threatened, beaten, hunted, tortured, imprisoned, and lied about-all because of his belief in Christ.

    What empowers a man to endure this type of abuse over and over and over and over and over again?

    As I have studied and thought about this very question, I think I came up with a reason that sums it up. His life was marked by this one resolute conviction:

    “Jesus is the only way, and the whole world must know!”

    Christian, in one sense you and I cannot stop that the world will stand against us. The world opposed Jesus, and because of this, the world will oppose us as Christians.

    In many ways we cannot prevent the worldwide opposition to Christianity.

    That being said, just like the apostle Paul was known for His resolve, you will also be known for something in this life. In this life, when you die, people will say something to sum up your life.

    What will that be?

    “What will be the one resolute conviction of your life?”

    What will you be known for? What will be the one overarching theme that marks your life?

    I can only pray that, for me, God would make me resolute like Paul!

    That when the time comes for me to go home, of me they will say:

    “Steele Croswhite loved Jesus, Jesus loved Him, and the whole world must know!”

    As we continue on through our study of Acts, ask yourself: “What will be the one resolute conviction of my life?”

    Resolved,

    Steele

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  203. Financial Peace by

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    This incredibly popular nine week class developed by Dave Ramsey will help you learn Biblical principles so that you can manage your money. This material has been very helpful for tens of thousands of people who have implemented principles that have changed their financial future.

    This class starts on Sunday, September 29 at Sandy building during at 11:15 a.m. in the Annex and has a material cost of $87. Contact Jeff & Jen Binford if you have any questions!

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  204. Secure by

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    One of the most comforting truths for me is the joy of my salvation. “Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and sustain me with a willing spirit.” (Psalm 51:12)

    In the midst of life’s storms when I’m beat down and confused or when Satan unrelentingly assaults me with lies, I fall back on what I know: God saved me and he will always take care of me. I am in the grip of his grace and along the way God will hold my hand. “When he falls, he will not be hurled headlong, because the Lord is the One who holds his hand.” (Psalm 37:24)
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    Like the soothing silk on an infants blanket and the (unfailing) shoulder straps of a carnival ride are the thoughts of my life in Christ. Jesus is the perfect Father and my security is not in question. As his son I’m always within his hearing and within his sight. I remember when my children were unpredictable toddlers and I would train them to stay where I could hear and see them. When they got older I taught them if you hear dad whistle you better come running – no questions asked. It was a safety plan to keep them protected for their own good.

    I am so thankful that as believers God gave us his Spirit and his Word to keep us protected along the way. He didn’t just leave us to figure it out in a sink-or-swim scenario. God has carefully planned our way. “‘For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.’” (Jeremiah 29:11)

    Safe and secure,

    Mac

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  205. Connected by

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    “All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.” (Acts 2:44-47)

    I was struck as I prepared my message covering Acts 16:1-15 at the impact a young boy named Timothy has had on the world – yet we know almost nothing about him. We know that Timothy was saved as a direct result of Paul’s ministry during his first missionary journey, and that on Paul’s second journey, he decided to take this young protégé along with him – and the world has never been the same!
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    Timothy’s impact on the first century church – and on us – is incalculable, as evidenced by the fact that his name is mentioned 17 times in 10 New Testament books, and that two letters that Paul wrote to him are included in the New Testament. In Acts 16 and in 2 Timothy 1 we learn that Timothy’s mother was a believer whose name is Eunice and that his grandmother’s name was Lois. We also know that his dad was a non-believing Greek.

    Other than that, we know relatively little about him. In fact, Pastor Robert F. Horton wrote this concerning Timothy:

    “We have no words from his lips, no letters from his pen. Paul loved him; that is all. Timothy comes to us as a teenager and then vanishes, never to be forgotten, never to be known, loved not for his own sake, but because Paul loved him.” (Pastoral Epistles)

    Wow! Think of it. God connected Paul and Timothy in relationship and God used their relationship to change the world! Not doctrine. Not creeds. Not rules and regulations – but a relationship!

    It is critically important for you and I to be connected in relationships within the church. Through Small Groups and House Churches, you have an opportunity to connect with other believers. I want to encourage you as the upcoming fall kicks off to commit yourself to being connected in relationship with others. And who knows – maybe you will change the world.

    Connecting,

    Bill

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  206. Free by

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    Christian, we are free! Romans 8:1-2 states “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.” We have tremendous freedom as believers. We must never let go of that truth!

    Yet there is another truth that we must never let go of either! In 1 Corinthians 8:12 Paul writes “… when you sin against other believers by encouraging them to do something they believe is wrong, you are sinning against Christ.” These two parallel themes run throughout Scripture. We have tremendous freedom in Christ and a mature believer limits their freedom for the sake of others.
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    The first century church debated food sacrificed to idols. Today, we debate different topics: personal finance, brands/types of food, how to spend your time, recreation and entertainment choices, clothing, alcohol, educational options, politics, where you should shop, war versus pacifism, spiritual gifts, different doctrinal creeds, styles of evangelism, methods of compassion, and on and on.

    And we live in a day and age where we can air our opinions online with absolute rigidity. Private, personal convictions become public dogmatism. As a general pattern, I believe we speak too freely. We will find an article that supports our position and immediately repost it, effectively saying, “Look at this article I found. I’m right!” We lack an awareness of our readers. We don’t know their struggles or sins. Living out 1 Corinthians 8:12 means that we start thinking of other’s rights above our own.

    Do you keep personal convictions private because you don’t want to violate someone else’s conscience? Christian, do you consistently limit your freedom in Christ because you are looking out for your brother or sister in church?

    Josh

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  207. Thirsty by

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    Recently I read a prayer in an old Puritan book that encouraged and challenged me. The Puritan prayer was this: “As the sun is full of light, the ocean full of water, heaven full of glory, so may my heart be full of Thee.”

    The Bible is filled with verses that speak of the deep desire for more of God’s presence in our lives.

    Here is how the Psalmist phrased it in Psalm 42:1: “As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God.”

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    Jesus said it this way in Matthew 5:6: “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.”

    The Apostle Paul expressed it like this in Philippians 3:10: “I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death…”

    Christian, do you hunger and thirst for more of Christ in your life? Do you desire for the presence of God to fill your everyday life? Do you hunger and thirst for His righteousness?

    This desire — this hunger and thirst — comes from knowing Him, examining Him, and going to Him so that he can thrill us with His presence. If you do not long for Him as the Psalmist did or desire Him in the same way that the Puritan does in his prayer, ask Him to create in you a thirst that can only be quenched by Him. Go to Him with the expectation to be filled and He will fill you up indeed.

    Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” — John 6:35

    Thirsty,

    Steele

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  208. Generous by

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    “Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!” (2 Corinthians 9:15, NIV)

    I recently had the opportunity to travel to Romania and to see firsthand how your generous contributions are making a difference in people’s lives around the world — a very real difference.

    After a prayer meeting on the night before I left Romania, Bob, the director of the ministry center where we stayed, took my hands and pulled me close. He looked into my eyes and with much compassion said, “Pastor Bill, when you get back to Utah could you please make sure to thank The Rock Church for their wonderful generosity and for making a real difference with the gypsies in Romania?”

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    Rock church — thank you! Lives are different because you gave. Your contributions have helped to clear land in a remote village in Romania. In addition to this, you gave even more money to pay for a new church/ministry center to be built on that land. Today, this building is almost complete thanks to the sacrifice of almost 30 Rock Church members who traveled and worked for two weeks this past July. I want to testify – as someone who sweat and bled on the very concrete and block that you paid for — that you are making a very real difference in Romania…and elsewhere.

    Additionally, we recently welcomed back our missionaries from Honduras and have heard great reports about dozens of salvations. Much good has happened due to your generous donations. God bless you Rock church.

    We are on world mission — and even if you don’t travel outside of Utah, you are still a part of it. I am proud to be laboring with such generous, sacrificial, and heavenly-minded saints like you.

    Your faith reminds me of what Paul said in 2 Corinthians 9:11-15:

    “You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God. This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of God’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God. Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, men will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else. And in their prayers for you their hearts will go out to you, because of the surpassing grace God has given you. Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!”

    May God continue to give us a heart to be generous on every occasion.

    Thanking God for you,

    Bill

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  209. August Prayer List by

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    Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

    Please join us praying daily for The Rock Church for the month of August, click here for the full list!

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  210. Prey by

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    “Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8).

    Have you ever watched a lion hunt? He silently stalks, keeping his eyes on his prey, pacing and waiting until the perfect moment to POUNCE! His prey are typically unsuspecting, distracted and unaware that they are about to be killed. And this is the exact picture the Bible paints of the devil.

    We’re in the middle of a battle, facing three distinct enemies: the world, the flesh, and the devil. The world is our enemy because it constantly communicates that personal glory and fulfillment can be attained apart from the eternal Christ, in temporal things such as fame, sexual immorality, money, and power.

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    The flesh is our enemy because it naturally gravitates toward these very same things, trying to fulfill its sinful desires. In other words, the world offers, and the flesh wants, tempting us to please ourselves instead of Christ.

    The devil is our enemy because he has been given power in the world. He heightens the preoccupation of self in order to distract, distort, and oppose the message of Christ. This life is not a game or a joke. It’s a battle against the devil and his agents who wish to destroy us.

    In the midst of this battle, the enemy knows he can’t touch God and is powerless against Him. But I think one of the worst things the enemy tries to do in an attempt to hurt God is to attack His kids. I know that in my own life I can handle just about anything said or done against me, but nobody better touch my kids! Likewise, the enemy does all he can to distract and deceive all God’s children.

    And where is the safest place in the world for a kid? Right next to his dad! And it’s the very same for all Christians. The safest place in the middle of the battle field is as close as we can possibly get to God! He’s our defender, protector, and strong tower.

    Are you hearing me? Are you prepared? Are you close to the Lord, regularly communicating with Him, armed with the power that comes only from Him?

    When you’re tempted, distracted, complacent, or tired, your refuge and strength is the living God. RUN to Him! He’s a good Father, with unbeatable, unbreakable, unstoppable power!

    Steele

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  211. Worship 2013! by

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    Standing Together is Honored to Once Again Host Utah’s Premier Annual Worship Gathering…

    Worship 2013

    Join us this year at the State Capitol Front South/East Lawn on Sunday August 11th from 5 to 8 p.m.

    This year’s worship will be led by…

    One Community
    Abundant Life Assembly of God
    City Church

    Hope to see you all there!

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  212. Surrounded by

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    Surrounded by Bill Young

    “For surely, O Lord, You bless the righteous; You surround them with Your favor as with a shield” (Psalm 5:12).

    It’s been a couple months since we completed our Roots 2.0 capital campaign, and things related to our building are moving right along. God’s favor has been with us like a strong shield. His blessing is evident.

    It appears that we’ll be in our current Sandy location at least until September. Our landlord has told us we can stay until their new building on the corner is completed. What new building? Exactly. They haven’t even broken ground yet, so it could be even longer before we have to move out. Thank you, Lord!

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    Regarding our new building in Draper, we’re chugging along full steam ahead with pre-construction details. We signed a contract with our architect (Building God’s Way in Ogden) and all construction documents should be finalized by the end of September. Once that’s complete, we can get bids from subcontractors and begin building. We’re also checking into fast-tracking all the excavation work as a separate project with the city of Draper which would allow us to put down footings and pour the foundation while the construction documents are being finished, hopefully by Labor Day. This would be such a huge head-start, so please pray for this. If all goes well, we’ll be in our new building by spring!

    We’ve also been working through all the remaining details to secure financing for the project, which should be finalized within 60-90 days.

    One big prayer request is still hanging over our heads (literally), and that’s the cost of burying the power lines on the property. Rocky Mountain Power is estimating between $120,000 to $150,000 to do this, so please pray that we’re able to find a solution for WAY cheaper!

    Overall, we really feel like God is going before us, and we’re so excited to grow our roots down deep by having a home of our own. God’s favor is a wonderful thing, and because of amazing, generous, excited, loyal people like you we can look forward to many years of fruitful labor in Utah! Thanks again for your pledges and your faithful giving toward your commitment. Lives will be changed because you gave. Eternity already is.

    Surrounded by the favor of God,

    Bill

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  213. Cling by

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    “Barnabas went to Tarsus to look for Saul, and when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. For a whole year they met with the church and taught a great many people. And in Antioch the disciples were first called Christians” (Acts 11:25-26).

    Antioch was the site of the first Gentile (non-Jewish) church. When reports of this church made it back to Jerusalem, the leaders sent Barnabas to investigate. Barnabas was definitely the right man for the job, “for he was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and of faith. And a great many people were added to the Lord” (Acts 11:24).

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    When Barnabas completed his 300-mile journey and arrived in Antioch, “he saw the grace of God and was glad” (Acts 11:23a). Barnabas observed firsthand how the unmerited favor of God’s Holy Spirit was saving these pagans and changing their lives. God was also using the harsh persecution against His church to spread the Gospel to more and more people.

    Barnabas preached encouragement to the church and “exhorted them all to remain faithful to the Lord with steadfast purpose” (Acts 11:23b). He understood the difficulties they were facing and knew that to remain true to Jesus they must cling to Him, for the greatest weapon against the enemy’s onslaught is to embrace the cross (Matthew 16:24).

    That message is the same yesterday, today, and forever! Just as Barnabas taught the new Christians in Antioch so many years ago, we need to cling to Jesus despite what life throws at us. When you’re tempted to sin, a loved one dies, you’re financially ruined, someone offends you deeply, life doesn’t go the way you thought it should, you want to give up all hope — whatever we’re facing, the cross of Christ is our refuge. Some of you may have even felt like you’ve done something so sinful that Jesus could never forgive you. Well, reject those lies and let the truth set you free. Regardless of the situation, remain faithful to Jesus. Cling to Him, for His grace is sufficient!

    Josh

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  214. Bask by

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    Bask by Steele Croswhite

    “Even before He made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in His eyes. God decided in advance to adopt us into His own family by bringing us to Himself through Jesus Christ. This is what He wanted to do, and it gave Him great pleasure. So we praise God for the glorious grace He has poured out on us who belong to His dear Son. He is so rich in kindness and grace that He purchased our freedom with the blood of His Son and forgave our sins. He has showered His kindness on us, along with all wisdom and understanding” (Ephesians 1:4-8).

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    The Apostle Paul wrote these words to the Ephesians after he had been changed by the love and grace of Jesus Christ. If you’re a Christian, do you feel the same way? Are you overwhelmed by the incomparable saving grace of God? Do you bask in His goodness?

    God’s grace is like an ocean. When we come to Christ for salvation, we walk into a tsunami of cleansing and forgivingness that impacts every area of our lives. This is why water baptism is such an appropriate illustration of grace. We don’t just sprinkle a little water on the head. A person is completely submerged as a relevant representation of total submission to the grace of God. You’re covered in it. You’re soaking in it. It’s dripping off of you. Like jumping into a pool on a hot day, every square inch of you is rejuvenated by the refreshing waters of God’s grace.

    And this grace is not just for salvation. Grace does not end at the moment we believe — it’s just the beginning! Once we become Christians, God’s grace abounds toward us and continues forever. We’re not to just dip our toe and test the waters. God wants us to dive right in, fully comprehending that His grace is unending and everlasting! It is strength for our weakness, mercy for our sins, and wisdom for our foolishness. It’s His supernatural resource to fuel the engines of our lives.

    Is it any wonder that Amazing Grace is one of the greatest hymns of all time? The grace of Jesus Christ is indeed amazing! Run to it. Be empowered and refreshed by it. Bask in it!

    Steele

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  215. Goads by

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    “And when we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew language, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads’” (Acts 26:14).

    How many times have you read this verse and thought: what in the world is a goad? Well, a goad is a sharp spiked stick typically used to prod animals along. So kicking a goad, especially in sandals, is probably rather painful.

    Some biblical commentators speculate that Paul’s conscience had been convicted by the testimony of Stephen. While he was being stoned, Stephen claimed to see Jesus, and in his final moments screamed, “Lord, forgive them!” And since Paul was the one leading the stoning of Stephen, I have to believe this had a profound impact on him.

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    But Paul still kept kicking against the goads — kicking against Jesus — and it was time to stop!

    How about you? Are you kicking against the goads? Are you fighting Jesus? Maybe you’re not even a Christian yet? Perhaps you’ve seen the lives of your friends and loved ones transformed by Jesus Christ, and you just hate it because you think Jesus is a crutch for weak people. If so, you’re kicking against the goads. And it hurts. Like Paul, you need to stop hating and start loving Jesus Christ. You need to become a Christian right now!

    Maybe you’re already a Christian but you’re just not listening to Jesus? Perhaps you won’t give up a particular sin, or you refuse to live the way you know you should? Maybe you’re constantly making excuses such as “everyone else is doing it” or “I’m covered by grace.” Are you kicking against the goads of disobedience?

    Whatever your scenario, if you’re resisting Jesus, it only hurts YOU! If you refuse to believe in Him, that will ultimately land you in hell. If you refuse to obey Him, that will only bring strife and misery.

    Stop kicking. Start embracing!

    Steele

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  216. Unrestrained by

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    Unrestrained by Steve McInroy

    “Then Jonathan said to the young man who was carrying his armor, ‘Come and let us cross over to the garrison of these uncircumcised; perhaps the Lord will work for us, for the Lord is not restrained to save by many or few’” (1 Samuel 14:6).

    This verse really challenges me. I love how Jonathan seems to say so nonchalantly, “Come let us cross over…” Jonathan was such a stud, ready to walk right into the enemy’s camp without hesitation! Me? I usually feel like the robot in that old Lost in Space TV show: “Danger, Will Robinson, danger!” If I’m honest with myself, I have to admit that I allow circumstances in life to restrain me. Finances, poor health, lack of time, and even lack of faith can sometimes coagulate my courage, preventing me from stepping out for the Lord.

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    What is curious is that I haven’t always been like this. I remember the days of my reckless youth, feeling very invincible in life. Sure, I was a bit naive and often paid the price for my shortsightedness. But nonetheless, it was a freeing and exhilarating time of life!

    I think that’s exactly how God wants all His children to feel! I believe He loves to take us to a place of unabashed courage and faith, because He knows that’s where we will thrive. I’m not talking about self-confidence, ability, or strength in numbers. I’m talking about utter dependence upon a loving God.

    In the Bible there are numerous examples of God restraining men and women so that He may reveal Himself UNrestrained. May God continue to give us His vision and godly restraint so we can live wholehearted and courageous lives — because the time is short. “[Our] days are like an evening shadow; [we] wither away like grass”(Psalm 102:11).

    As our lives on earth rapidly approach their end, let’s courageously press on toward the abundant life that Christ has promised.

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  217. Strength by

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    Strength by Bill Young

    “The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe” (Proverbs 18:10).

    Difficult circumstances often bring out the worst in people. I know that happens with me. I can be having a great day, but if something goes wrong with my car or my computer I’m suddenly snapping at my kids.

    1 Samuel tells how King David and his men faced an extreme trial. They had marched for 36 hours straight, only to discover that their wives and children had been kidnapped or murdered and all their earthly possessions were stolen. NOT a good day!

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    How would you have responded? How did they respond? These difficult circumstances brought out their worst. “David was greatly distressed because the men were talking of stoning him; each one was bitter in spirit because of his sons and daughters” (1 Samuel 30:6a).

    The men blamed David for their loss, which often happens to leaders. When things go well, it’s a great team victory. But when things take a turn for the worse, the leader takes the hit. It happens in secular corporations, and sometimes it even happens in the church. People are fickle, and that’s why leaders need to respond like David did.

    The best part about David’s story is that the very same difficult circumstances which brought out the worst in his men brought out the best in David. As author Eugene Peterson says, “In the chaos of lamentation, anger, and bitterness, with storm clouds of murder rolling in across the horizon … David found strength in the Lord his God” (1 Samuel 30:6b).

    When things got rough, David did not turn to books, or doctors, or psychologists, or food, or drugs. He turned to God! And this should be our regular habit as well. We need to seek God every day, and not just when disaster falls. A steady stream of seeking the Lord will turn us TO God and not AWAY from Him when the storm strikes.

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