The Rock Church

Blog

  1. Sing for He is Worthy by

    Leave a Comment

    Sing for He is Worthy A Word by Pastor Steele Croswhite

    “Sing a new song to the Lord!
    Let the whole earth sing to the Lord!
    Sing to the Lord; praise his name.
    Each day proclaim the good news that he saves.
    Publish his glorious deeds among the nations.
    Tell everyone about the amazing things he does.
    Great is the Lord! He is most worthy of praise!” — Psalm 96:1-4

    Read more →

    Music can be a lot of things. Music can be used as a backdrop for memories. It can be used as a platform for communicating a message. It can be used to create emotion in both the heart of the musician and the heart of the listener. Music can mean everything (all at once), or very little (depending on the moment). But, no matter what it is, music will never leave you unaffected. Whether it’s good or bad, music will leave you with an impression, an emotion, or a message.

    At The Rock Church, our heart (as musicians) is that the music we share with you will leave you with all three of those things. Each week, we hope to offer you an impression of Jesus, an emotion for Jesus, and a message about Jesus. More specifically, we hope to offer you the message that Jesus Christ, our God, is WORTHY!!!

    Understanding God is worthy means knowing He possesses (and has shown) the qualities and abilities that merit our recognition in a specified way. He deserves…. our WORSHIP. God is deserving of our effort, our attention, our respect, and our voices.

    Our prayer is that as a Body, we would draw closer to Jesus in our worship of Him. Our prayer is that as you recognize His worthiness, you will sing out to Him in your loudest voice. Cry out to Him in your deepest soul. Lift your hands to Him in greatest admiration.

    As musicians, our heart is that you would not see us as bands who perform for you. Rather, as your brothers and sisters, who sing along side you — to our worthy God. Together, we would recognize that Psalm 145:3 is correct when it says, “Great is the LORD and most worthy of praise; 
his greatness no one can fathom.”

    We invite you to worship Jesus this weekend — for truly only He is worthy!!

    Singing —

    Steele

    Posted in A Word from the Pastor by

  2. Hardly Notice by

    Leave a Comment

    Hardly Notice

    I started reading my Bible regularly when I was high school (way back in 1991-1995). Man, does time fly! It has been a part of my daily routine ever since. Over the years, I have read a number of translations: NASB, NIV and ESV primarily. Well, this year, I decided to mix it up and read from The Message version.

    Read more →

    The Message version is not a translation of the Bible. It’s not really a thought for thought version either. It is one man’s paraphrase. My copy of The Message doesn’t even have verse references — which makes cross-referencing it to other translations difficult. But, I have enjoyed reading it this year. Peterson’s take on the Bible is thought provoking.

    As we are finishing our study of 2 Peter, I read this in chapter three — “Daily expect the Day of God, eager for its arrival. The galaxies will burn up and the elements melt down that day—but we’ll hardly notice. We’ll be looking the other way, ready for the promised new heavens and the promised new earth, all landscaped with righteousness.”

    I loved how that was phrased. We’ll hardly notice the galaxies burning up?! Can you imagine that? God will be burning up the galaxies, the total destruction of the universe, and we won’t notice. We’ll be looking the other way — at our new home, the new earth. Even thinking about it now makes my heart jump. Christian, when life has you down this week, remember that we have a glorious future with God in front of us! Fix your attention on that. Can you imagine something so amazing and so awesome, that you hardly notice that the universe is burning up behind you?! That is our future.

    Looking forward to that day —

    Josh

    (If you want a clue on what specific verses I’m talking about, Pastors Bill and Bryan taught on them this weekend!)

    Photo Credit

    NASA

    Posted in A Word from the Pastor by
    Tags: , ,

  3. No Counterfeits by

    Leave a Comment

    No Counterfeits

    “I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel — which is no gospel at all.” Galatians 1:6 (NIV84)

    My older sister has an innate ability to discern distress in my voice. Many years ago, our first-born son, Joseph, was admitted to the hospital for an unknown virus; he was only 10 weeks old! I called my sister to let her know. “What’s wrong?” came her instant and concerned response to my weak greeting. She had me. I burst into tears as the stress and torment of the last few hours overwhelmed me. My sister knew me too well — I couldn’t put up a front. Something was wrong and she discerned it immediately.

    Read more →

    In the same way, you and I can discern Truth from error almost instantly. I mentioned the key to this ability in a recent teaching. Do we need to study every erroneous religion in depth? No! Just get to know the Truth — and know it well. Jesus told us what Truth is. It’s found in God’s Word (John 17:17). The more you know the Truth, the more confident you will be in perceiving the lies.

    Years ago, I was asked by two members of another religion, how I could reject their beliefs when I hadn’t even read all of their key publications? I pulled out a fake $10 bill (I keep in my wallet) and asked them if they thought they could spend my bogus bucks at a local store. “Of course not,” they exclaimed. “It’s obviously not real.” I explained to them that in the same way, I could not accept their religion as “truth” because (measured against the Bible), what they offered me was a counterfeit. Though they claimed to believe the Bible, their fundamental beliefs were “obviously not real.”

    If someone approaches you, claiming to have truth, just compare it to the “original”. Then, gently but confidently, explain that you don’t accept any counterfeits. (By the way, our Joseph ended up getting all better)!

    Proclaiming the Truth,

    Bill

    Posted in A Word from the Pastor by
    Tags: , ,

  4. Most Valuable by

    Leave a Comment

    valuable

    When I was 12 years old, I traded two Michael Jordan basketball cards to my neighbor for six of his “Pistol Pete” Maravich basketball cards. For me, this was a no brainer. I give up two cards of a player I didn’t really like, for six cards of my all-time hero. At the card shop, however, it was a very different story. Those two Michael Jordan cards I traded were very valuable, worth $250… A PIECE!

    Read more →

    Everyone told me I was crazy for giving up such a treasure. To me, it didn’t matter. The trade was absolutely worth it because these were no ordinary basketball cards I got in the trade. They were “Pistol Pete” cards. I would have traded even more cards to get the ones I wanted the most.

    It has been 20 years since I made that trade; if you were to ask me where those treasures were today, I wouldn’t be able to tell you. They are nowhere to be found. Funny, how something so valuable to me back then means almost nothing to me now.

    Thinking back to those days reminds me of the parable in Matthew 13:44, “The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.” In this story, Jesus teaches us that being with our Savior forever in glory is so precious and valuable, that we would be willing to give up everything just to have it. This is much bigger than basketball cards! In fact, if you owned every basketball card, comic book, piece of fine jewelry, and fancy car in the world, it still wouldn’t be as valuable as being an heir to the Kingdom of Heaven.

    The problem we have (as Believers in this world) is that everyday, everyone and everything is competing to be our greatest treasure. People, places, and things are twisting our arms — trying to persuade us that there is something in this world more valuable than Jesus. The truth is that we have obtained a treasure that all the money in the world couldn’t buy. A treasure that God purchased through His Son and freely gave to us all. There is nothing more precious that this. Yet, we struggle every day to be satisfied with it.

    Brothers and sisters, we must not only be able to sing, “take the world but give me Jesus” and “I would run for a thousand years”, but we must actually believe it! These aren’t truths we should neglect and lose interest in over time — like old trading cards. Our hearts should continue to proclaim that nothing in this world can compare to the treasure of Heaven. Like King Jesus said in Matthew 6:21, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

    What is most valuable to you? Will you take a moment and thank Jesus for the treasure that He is? Ask God to help you to see His Son as more valuable than anything.

    Bryan

    Posted in A Word from the Pastor by
    Tags: , , ,

  5. Pure and Simple Daily Devotion by

    Leave a Comment

    Pure and Simple Devotion

    I just had a chance to work through our family schedule with my sweet wife. It’s one of those weeks where all of our evenings (and most of our days) are filled up Monday through Friday.

    I am thankful to have such a full life, but at times, it can feel a little bit (okay, a lot) overwhelming. This is especially true when you add kids into the mix.

    Read more →

    You know how it goes….you wake up on Monday already looking forward to the “rest” you’ll get on Saturday… when you can slow down at your kid’s soccer game! Weeks like this are begging for some “down” time. If you are anything like me, you can tend to look for what you can take off of your plate.

    With that being said, let me encourage you to try and keep one thing ON your plate — your devotion time with your children.

    I know this looks different for all families. It should. My encouragement is not to tell you what plan works best. Rather, I want to encourage you to make the time to be talking and learning about Jesus together. I am not sure what rhythm works in your home, but I want to ask you (in the most gracious manner), “Do your kiddos regularly learn from YOU about Jesus?” My question is not meant at all to condemn but to clarify.

    For some, this can mean reading a children’s Bible story before bed. Or working through what they learned in Sunday School. Or journaling together. Recently, my oldest son and I have had a chance to work through Proverbs together while also reading a short and interesting devotional.

    As parents, when we are in a regular habit of carving out time to talk about Jesus with our kids, it becomes a part of their day and ours. Each devotional time doesn’t need to have an “AHA” moment or huge lesson involved. Instead, there just needs to be a time to value and emphasize the things of God and Jesus.

    Our days are spent on so many activities. Good ones, even. We have soccer games, music lessons, dinner times, snack times, school, church, play dates, work, car repairs, house projects, and….the list never ends.

    I know it’s hard. It takes practice, work, and time. But, you need to give your kiddos the gift of learning how to come before Jesus. Show them how worthwhile it is to take time out of life to learn from the Author of life.

    My prayer is that when it counts, when the metal is tested, my children will lean into those devotional times for wisdom and truth. My prayer is that when their little lives are squeezed, the overflow of their response will be that of wisdom and truth. My prayer is that they will one day see how mom and dad looked past the eye roll of “not getting to watch a show” and see how important it was that they grew in the habit of seeking Christ.

    Pure and simple daily devotion to Christ starts with you.

    Parents, you are heroes. You are involved in the greatest work of your life. Your kids are so blessed to have you. How wonderful it is for them to wake up in your home each morning. One day they will know it. They will be different because of it.

    The timer just went off — on to the next thing.

    Keep at it, guys!

    Steele

    Posted in A Word from the Pastor, Parenting by
    Tags: , , , ,

  6. Asking For Wisdom by

    Leave a Comment

    Asking for Wisdom A Word by Pastor Tony D'Amico of The Rock Church in Utah

    “So we have not stopped praying for you since we first heard about you. We ask God to give you complete knowledge of his will and to give you spiritual wisdom and understanding. Then the way you live will always honor and please the Lord, and your lives will produce every kind of good fruit. All the while, you will grow as you learn to know God better and better.” — Colossians 1:9-10

    Read more →

    This is amazing to me. Paul, locked up in prison, is writing to a group of Christians he has never met. You can see the love he has for others because he was constantly praying for them (not himself). His prayer here also focused on spiritual blessing and guidance, rather than physical things. Of course, it is not wrong to pray for physical things, we totally should (Luke 11:5-13). But, our spiritual needs are of a far greater importance.

    There are two things that I noticed in his prayer. First, we need spiritual wisdom and understanding. Then we can live a life pleasing to God and produce good fruit. It’s easy to pray for the “fruit” first and forget to pray for wisdom and understanding. We will not be able to produce fruit if we are not walking with the Lord under His guidance. We can tend to pray things like, “Lord, please help me get out of debt.” instead of praying, “Lord, please give me Your wisdom and understanding on how to utilize the money you’ve given to me.” Wisdom and understanding will help us more in the long run rather than just getting us through the problem at hand.

    Christian, how often are you praying for spiritual wisdom and understanding for yourself or for those around you? How about those in your church, or even Christians around the world who you don’t even know? Prayer is very powerful and something we can do at any time or place. We just need to open our mouths and communicate with our gracious Father.

    Praying for you –

    Tony

    Posted in A Word from the Pastor by
    Tags: , ,

  7. Legacy by

    Leave a Comment

    Legacy A Word from Pastor Billy Johnson of The Rock Church in Utah

    “I think it right, as long as I am in this body, to stir you up by way of reminder, since I know that the putting off of my body will be soon, as our Lord Jesus Christ made clear to me. And I will make every effort so that after my departure you may be able at any time to recall these things.” — 1 Peter 1:13-15

    Read more →

    In John 21:18-19, Jesus tells Peter, “Truly, truly, I say to you, when you were young, you used to dress yourself and walk wherever you wanted, but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will dress you and carry you where you do not want to go.” (This he said to show by what kind of death he was to glorify God.) And after saying this he said to him, “Follow me.”

    When Peter is writing his letter to these churches, he knows his time on this earth is coming to an end. He knows that his life journey is almost over and he wants to make sure that he’s “stirring up” the believers by way of reminders.

    I’m sure there were many things Peter could have been investing his time and efforts towards as his life was drawing to a close. What did he choose? God’s people. He chose to put a great effort into his legacy.

    Christian, what are you putting your efforts into? None of us know when we’ll leave this world so we may not sense any urgency to answer this question. However, we all know that our time here is limited for sure. Why not make an effort to leave your legacy in something that will last?

    Does your wife know you love her? Does your husband know you love him? Do your kids know that you are there for them no matter what? Does your church family know you are devoted to them? Do your friends and family know that what you’re living for is bigger than the here and now?

    In two generations, the only memory of you will be what those who knew you personally will pass down. After that, people will only know you by what’s said about you. That’s incredibly sobering. What will you give them to remember you by?

    Making an effort,

    Billy

    Posted in A Word from the Pastor by
    Tags: , ,

  8. Dwelling Place by

    Leave a Comment

    Dwelling Place, A Word by Pastor Steele Croswhite of The Rock Church in Utah

    “Lord, you have been our dwelling place throughout all generations. Before the mountains were born or you brought forth the whole world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.” — Psalm 90:1-2

    Read more →

    Recently, I have been greatly encouraged by these verses. You see, Moses was a man who was familiar with change. Throughout his lifetime, he traveled and lived in many different locations. He saw and experienced many hardships as well as celebrated God’s many miracles. In other words, Moses was a man who was familiar with life’s “up and downs”.

    In light of this, God was Moses’ anchor. God was his “constant”. God was Moses’ “dwelling place”. To Moses, God was the only thing that did not change.

    This truth applies to us today. With all of life’s changes, God is our anchor. He is our home. He is our “dwelling place”. God is the one thing in our lives that DOES NOT CHANGE. He alone remains the same — day in and day out.

    As Christians, this truth should be an incredible comfort to us. God does not change with the season, the style, or the stock market. From everlasting to everlasting — He is God!

    Given this truth, no wonder the Bible defines God as our anchor, our rock, our fortress, our peace, our home, and our shelter.

    Are the tumultuous winds of change howling at your door? Take comfort and run to Him — He is your Rock!

    Resting in His shelter —

    Steele

    Posted in A Word from the Pastor by
    Tags: , , ,

  9. Pee Pond by

    Leave a Comment

    Pee Pond A Word by Pastor Josh Whitney from The Rock Churches in Utah

    “In regard to these [sins], they think it strange that you do not run with them in the same flood of dissipation, speaking evil of you.” — 1 Peter 4:4

    Dissipation is excessive indulgence in sensual pleasures. The world is surprised when you don’t jump into the same pool of sinful pleasures.

    Last year, my family and I visited some friends who live out in a rural area. While we were talking, I asked my friend (because they live so far away from town), “What do you do with your waste water? Do you have a leech field?”

    I know that is not a very normal question. It’s because of my engineering background. My friend said, “No, we have a pee pond.” He explained how the ‘solids’ and ‘liquids’ are separated. Then the liquids make their way into a waste water evaporation pond. I told him I had to see this. So, I hiked over to the pond. Yep, there was it was. The waste water evaporation pond.

    Gross! When I studied this verse, I thought of the pee pond. It is exactly what the world is doing. They are running and doing cannon balls into the pee pond of sin. We used to do it with them. Then we got saved. Jesus cleaned us up and gave us a new heart. He transformed us from the inside out. We didn’t clean ourselves up, He did it. He made us new. He clothed us in his righteousness!

    Now your friends say, “Come jump in the pee pond with us!” And you’re like, “No I’ll pass.” And they attack you. People think you are crazy now. Why wouldn’t you party, drink and have sex? What’s wrong with you? Why wouldn’t you sacrifice your family to make more money? Why wouldn’t you live for your hobbies? The changed life of a Believer condemns the unbeliever; no wonder they hate the change. Christian, I hope you understand that when people attack us, it is a chance for us to witness to them about Jesus!

    Trying to stay dry.

    Josh

    Posted in A Word from the Pastor by

  10. Out of the War Zone and Into Peace by

    Leave a Comment

    Out of the War Zone and Into Peace by Steele Croswhite of The Rock Church

    Hey, Parents –

    You guys are heroes. You are involved in the greatest work of your life and your kids are so blessed to have you as their mom and dad. I mean it!

    I’m not sure about you, but sometimes it seems like my children’s favorite words to each other are things like, “Stop it!”, “That’s mine!” or “NO!”

    How many times have we heard this?

    Read more →

    If you are anything like me, those words (at times) can almost become like background noise and are easy to ignore. We can tend to think to ourselves, “They’ll work it out.” or “At least they’re not crying.” or “They’re just kids.”

    All that to say (like me), I know you want your children to get along with one another and to one day grow into loving adults who care for one each other.

    We have a couple of sayings in my house that seem to help a little with this “all-too- familiar” conflict.

    1. “Your family is your best friend.”
    2. “If you can’t play with each other nicely, then you can’t play with other friends.”
    3. “Your closest neighbor is your brother and sister.”
    4. “Older brothers and sisters protect, NOT pester.”

    I know it seems silly, but over time, it starts to work into their little minds and hearts.

    The desire for my kids to love and care for one another as they grow is not something that “just comes” naturally or easily. It takes work, practice, time, and prayer.

    Against my tired flesh, it takes me being willing to stand up (again) and calling those little warriors out of that war zone and into peace.

    I’ll say, “God calls us to speak kindly to one another and to care for one another. Let’s try it again. How should we talk to each other?”

    When the oldest child says, “But he’s too small and doesn’t play what I want to play!” then I have to say again, “Then play what HE wants to play.”

    It takes me telling my daughter to play “bad guy” with him and likewise, telling my son to “play baby” with her.

    It takes us sitting down as a family to “practice” kind speech. Talking about what the “right” and “wrong” way to speak to one another looks like.

    Parents, don’t give into the “all-too-easy” desire to let “your kids work it out.” There is a time for that, no doubt. But, in the younger years especially, you need to jump in there. Be willing to stand as a reminder to them, that there is a circle of blessing God invites them to walk in.

    Remind them again and again that they were born (out of all the people in the whole world) into YOUR family. That is truly something to fight for and rejoice in.

    Next time you hear your little people scream at one another… take a breath, smile, and bring them into peace.

    In the war zone with you,

    Steele

    Posted in A Word from the Pastor, Parenting, Thought by
    Tags: , ,