First Thessalonians

Click here to listen to Audio for this discipleship series

Must-Haves in community

For today’s Q&A, Jamie Harms sat down with Pastor Brett Gilchrist. Below are the questions she asked him and a summary of his answers. Brett preached Sunday from Colossians 3:1-17. During the message, he highlighted eight characteristics from verses 12-17 that disciples must put on to function within the church community — compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, patience, bearing with one another, forgiveness, and love. If you haven’t listened yet, the link is included in this post. Just before the message, we had the privilege of hearing Romans 12:3-8 read in French by a dear brother, beautifully foreshadowing the diversity we will enjoy in the future as believers from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, worship the Lamb of God together (Revelation 7:9).

Discipleship: Community

Today’s post includes a new set of recordings and Scriptures from our First Thessalonians study, both a review of the practice of community and a look ahead at community in the life of a disciple.

My God is the prize

Today’s Q & A is with UFC’s associate pastor of community and formation Jerell Carper and his wife Lauren. Jerell brought us Sunday’s sermon on UFC’s second discipleship practice — Communion — with a sermon from John 15 about abiding in the love of God. Jerell asked us to reframe the language of salvation to see that the prize of salvation is Jesus. The prize is not the final destination, any good gifts that come from a life of faith, or a mystical idea of what Jesus can do for those who trust in Him. The reward is a beautiful union with Jesus, who calls us friends and longs for us to simply be with Him.

Discipleship: Communion

This coming week the women of UFC will be back in First Thessalonians to study the discipleship practice of communion — the patterns and habits that direct how we abide in the presence of God. Join us on Sunday as Jerell Carper, UFC’s associate pastor of community and formation, brings our message on communing with Christ from our new location at 1275 Polk Street in Eugene.

My God is All-knowing

Happy Monday, Friends. Today we have a special Q & A with UFC College Pastor Sean Duncan and his wife Chelsey. On Sunday, Sean introduced UFC’s first discipleship practice — Learning — with a sermon from Matthew 11:25-30. He challenged us to read the Bible, apply the Bible, rest in the Bible, and enjoy the Bible as we seek to be like Jesus. Sean began his sermon with background on the earlier verses of Matthew 11 as John the Baptist’s disciples asked Jesus, “Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another” (vs. 3). For those of you who listened to Jamie Harms’ teaching from Thursday, you’ll see the connection to the question, “Who do you say that I am?” (Luke 9:18-27).

Discipleship: Learning

Editor’s Note: We had a sweet start to our study of First Thessalonians on Thursday with a group in the morning (some women participating via Zoom) and another in the evening. It’s not too late to join us in person, on Zoom, or via the blog. To sign up for weekly emails and information on in-person and Zoom meetings, please click here. Today’s post includes everything you’ll need to get started, but as Jamie Harms reminded us, the key is being in God’s Word each day. Yes, the questions and activities in the study guide are good, but if all you have time for is a few minutes each day, read and reread First Thessalonians. This letter written around A.D. 50 has much to say to us in A.D. 2021 and connects beautifully to UFC’s discipleship series, which began last Sunday and will continue for the next seven weeks. Learn more here.

Beacons of Light and Hope

My heart feels heavy and sick. The hope that we had for this to be a normal school year, for our community and activities to be as they used to be, for peace between neighbors and brothers and sisters in Christ to reign, for our world to not be so topsy turvy has disappointed us. Hope has been deferred once again, and we are tired. As I chat with other women, I know I am not alone in this sentiment. So many of us are weary and overwhelmed as we settle into a fall routine, and we see that when we place our hope in things of this world, like everything going back to normal, we find it wanting. But we do not have to live as those without hope.

An Outdoor Evening Together

Special things are happening in the next two weeks as the women of UFC enjoy a special evening together and begin a new study of First Thessalonians. We hope you’ll join us. Today’s post includes the signup links for both events.