Sunday, January 10, 2016

January 10

Then he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.” Luke 12:5

Most of the 1100+ people who attended this morning will have no idea how many people served so diligently in order for them to have an encounter with God this morning. Beyond our staff who work all week there are countless volunteers who serve faithfully each Sunday. 

Today I'd like to highlight the set-up and take down teams at our Hampstead Campus. These folks endured some tough conditions this morning from the weather that was lousy to a truck that wouldn't start to an audio glitch that was beyond their control. And through it all they persevered and served so that the folks attending in Hampstead could have a great experience. Thank you to ALL our great volunteers!

If you know some volunteers who we should all appreciate please share them and their stories below.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

January 3

Therefore if anyone is in Christ there is new creation; 
The old has gone, the new has come! 2 Cor 5:17

The new year is off to a great start! I was able to experience the worship and fellowship at both campuses this morning and it was a real blessing. New faces and spirit led encounters were part of the excitement in both locations. We had 2 full Discover Crossroads groups kick off this morning.

PLEASE share your stories below!

Here's the gist of an encouraging note I received before Christmas...
The note was from a couple in our congregation who have both had significant physical issues. They were expressing how thankful they were for the care they were given during and after hospital stays. The impact was not only the meeting of the practical needs but the encouragement of a faith that was displayed not only on Sundays but every day!

Sunday, December 27, 2015

December 27

Come, all you who are thirsty,
    come to the waters;
and you who have no money,
    come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk
    without money and without cost. Isaiah 55:1

With 11 services in the last 7 days we have witnessed  a lot of thirsty people coming to find life! What a privilege to be a part of God's great redemptive work. Thank you for being a part of it (and everyone receiving this email was a part of it).

Here are a few stories I have heard from the past week. PLEASE share yours below!

Our first Christmas Eve service in Hampstead was a great success. We had 231 people at 3 o'clock in the afternoon- and lots of new faces. It is fun to imagine having next years Christmas Eve services in our own building in Hampstead.

The Choir was a big hit at all 5 services. Nick Wheatley shared that a friend of his came back to church for the first time in 10 years and ended up singing in the choir.

I heard more than a few stories of people who came feeling underdressed and uncomfortable but who left feeling like "ALL PEOPLE" meant them.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

December 20

The people walking in darkness
    have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of deep darkness
    a light has dawned. Isaiah 9:2

5 Days until Christmas!
And 5 Christmas Eve Services!!

5PM & 7PM Westminster 12/23
3PM Hampstead 12/24
5PM & 7PM Westminster 12/24

After months of preparation and prayers the celebration of the birth of Christ is here. I hope God will give you an opportunity to be a light to someone walking in darkness this week. 

In case you missed it we made the front page! Here's the Carroll County Times story on the flashmob from Friday night.  CCTIMES VIDEO

Share your stories below!

Sunday, December 13, 2015

December 13

As a young man marries a young woman, so will your Builder marry you;
as a bridegroom rejoices over his bride, so will your God rejoice over you. Isaiah 62:5

Thank you to EVERYONE who made the Live Nativity such a huge success! I've heard some great stories already (I love the one about Kevin's Clydesdale sticking his head into the Lexus and then sneezing on the leather seats - and the driver!) i'm sure you have more spiritual stories to tell.  Please share your experiences with all of us in the comments section below. Then check back throughout the week to share in the testimony of God's Spirit at work.

Last week we ran a Facebook ad for the first time ever. The ad was announcing the opening of our Hampstead campus and was targeted to people who lived within a 3 mile radius of NCHS. It was really well received and as of tonight over 150 people have clicked on the ad to visit our website or our Facebook page. This week we are going to run another ad highlighting our Christmas Eve service in Hampstead. you can multiply the effectiveness of our ad by clicking here  and indicating you are going. 

With just over 2 weeks left in December we have the opportunity to lead by example for our congregation. I do not have any results from today but I at the end of last week we had 151 givers to the NEXT offering. Yay God! That number includes about half of our staff and leadership teams. For those of you who have given, THANK YOU! If you have not yet given would you consider participating this week? I'd love for us to lead by example - regardless of the amount - and have 100% of our staff and leadership participating. 

Sunday, December 6, 2015

December 6

And he shall stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the Lord,
    in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God.
And they shall dwell secure, for now he shall be great
    to the ends of the earth.
And he shall be their peace. Micah 5:4-5

So much happened before the shepherds stopped by...
And so much happens before every weekend service and every story of life change. I was reminded this morning of how many people serve in so many ways - even ways that most of us are unaware of - and how crucial every person is to the ministry of Crossroads. Thanks for playing your part!

Here are two stories of God moments...
After the Men of Standard presentation last month the Mayor of Union Bridge recognized the men from the recovery house walking through town and stopped them to share how encouraged he was at their story he heard at Crossroads.  He went on to ask them if they would sing at the Christmas tree lighting in Union Bridge! This is not the tree lighting but a shot of the men and Everett putting up their own tree in the house.

After receiving new members at the 11am service in Westminster we celebrated tonight with a dinner. It was so encouraging to hear their stories and enjoy fellowship with our new partners in ministry. 

PLEASE share your stories in the comments below.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

November 29

The land on which your feet have walked will be your inheritance and that of your children forever, because you have followed the Lord my God wholeheartedly. Joshua 14:9

Happy Thanksgiving!

What a great way to end the NEXT series! Lots of people shared how they were going to embrace what God had next for them. From going back to school to opening a memory care assisted living facility, people were challenged and encouraged to move from here to there. Let's keep praying for the NEXT offering as we move into December and the end of the year.

Here's a story from this morning...
I met Connor after the 11am service in Westminster.  But I didn't meet him in the Sanctuary or in the Foyer but in Chipotle! He came up and introduced himself and shared that he had attended off and on with his parents and was currently a Sophomore at Loyola University. He shared how he thought he was a Christ follower his whole life but recently "found his way back" to God and was so excited to embrace what God had next for him. I was so encouraged by his story and so thankful that God allowed me to run into him at Chipotle.

Share your stories below!

Sunday, November 22, 2015

November 22

Then the LORD said to Joshua, "See I have given Jericho into your hands..." Joshua 6:2

What a great encouraging morning worshiping at both campuses! I am so thankful for ALL our volunteers that make it happen. 

Here's a fun story that culminated this morning...
Michelle is a 20 something new Capernaum leader who is from a deaf family but who has cochlear implants that allow her to hear. She has been signing at our monthly club meetings and last week asked if it would be possible for her to interpret for her deaf sister who was open to coming to church for the first time this Sunday. Of course I said yes. 
Michelle shared this Tuesday night and asked others in our group to pray for her meanwhile, Janet (another member of our group) was working at the front desk on Wednesday afternoon and answered the phone and was asked by the caller if Crossroads had any deaf interpreted services! Well she explained we normally did not but it just so happened that we would this Sunday at 9:30 in Westminster. How cool is that?

Sunday, November 15, 2015

November 15

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go. Joshua 1:9

NEXT off to a great start! As we began to focus on what's next for Crossroads I want to highlight a few things for everyone on our team.  Over the next 2 weeks I will continue to challenge our congregation to embrace what's next for Crossroads by serving and giving. Our NEXT offering will begin on November 29 and continue through the ed of the year. Our goal that I will continue to communicate from the stage is 100% and $100,000. I would ask that you join me in praying specifically for those goals. Be strong and courageous!

This is one story from this morning from Michelle (A 20 something who serves with us in Capernaum) she wrote to Elizabeth...
...the coolest thing is right before service I saw Lori in the lobby and we were talking and somehow she was led to ask me if I'd be interested serving in children's ministry and funny thing was a few days ago God brought that to my heart but I kept putting it aside BC of fear.   Well I said yes and got an application and then I heard the sermon and it fit so well that being courageous is being afraid but doing it anyway... I always let fear get in the way but at the same time if I'm really still and listen to His whisper - look for opportunity then joy happens! I'm super excited to see what God is going to do at Crossroads! 

Please share your stories below!

Sunday, November 8, 2015

November 8

But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found. Luke 15:32

What a great celebration of life!  Thank you to everyone who participated in the baptism services this morning.  We had such a diverse mix of people of all ages and backgrounds. I know the Hampstead campus was with us in spirit and I can't wait until we have out first baptisms there. Maybe some folks who came for the first time today will be those people!

Please share your stories from this week in the comments below!