Will you join the Restoration?

I have made two decisions . . .

1. I love the Churches of Christ family and plan to stay as long as the family doesn’t vote me off the island.

2. God loves people of all nations, and Christ still deeply desires the unity he prayed for, and I want to be part of that unity with all who follow Jesus.

These two decisions bring a healthy tension in my life. And if you take these two decisions seriously, you too will feel a deeper tension. This tension is similar to the way you feel when you love your family but also have compassion for the outcast. You take risks, you do not abandon your first loves, but you also do not abandon a suffering person to injustice or hopelessness.

Today and in this article the call is for Churches of Christ to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit to be set free from the idea that we can master the Bible and all truth. Rather, we must let the Bible and the Spirit of Truth master us.

The question is not, “When will people join us?” but a bigger question: “When will we join the 21st Century Restoration and Revival that’s happening worldwide?” God’s Spirit is moving and incredible and passionate and I want to be part of what’s God is doing among people of all nations, tribes, and denominations.

Read the story.

By Greg Taylor Posted in 1

What is justice?

What does the word justice bring to mind? What did justice mean to Jesus?

I think of the words "fairness" and "equity" and "dignity" among others.

Today we're hosting Paul Kent from Habitat for Humanity Tulsa at the Green Country Event Center. We'll get his input on how our land or resources can be used to bring justice to those without adequate or affordable housing in Tulsa.

We're also hosting Linda Williamson, Chairman of the Board of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce in Tulsa. She is bringing her team and we'll also get their input on how we can participate in justice for Hispanic people in Tulsa.

By Greg Taylor Posted in 1

Sunday, May 10

Sunday is Mother's Day and Baby Dedication @ Garnett Church of Christ

Lundy Morrison and Janet Collins have put together an excellent dedication and time to honor mothers. Kathy Erwin and children's chorus will be singing, and Amy Victory plans to give a testimony that goes along with Greg Taylor's sermon. There are a few pieces of good news and surprises you won't want to miss, but you'll have to come to find out!

IMPORTANT NOTE: After Bible classes this Sunday, May 10, all children and babies of all ages will be coming into worship for the entire worship time. Nursery will still be open if mothers need it but it will not be staffed for leaving babies, since all ages of children will be with us for whole worship.

JAMES AND NELDA LAWRENCE: Nelda Lawrence's dad, Byron Stewart, passed away suddenly Wednesday May 6 in Longview, TX. James and Nelda are traveling there for the funeral which will be Satruday at 2 p.m. Please pray for Nelda's family. Related to this, Greg Taylor will teach a combined class in James Lawrence's place, 9 am Sunday, May 10 in Building 6.

garnettinfo@gmail.com

By Greg Taylor Posted in 1

Dr. David Hall

My good friend David Hall has the best eye clinic in Tulsa are and Okmulgee. The staff are great and helpful, and Dr. Hall has helped our family a lot over the years, since the time we were in Uganda and needed our eyeballs checked while traveling in the states.

Now it’s a real pleasure to live close to Dave and Suzette Hall. Dave is a great family man and leader in Muskogee Church of Christ, where I’ll be visiting April 26th to speak to a leadership gathering.

Visit Dr. Hall if you need your eyes checked and if you need to be encouraged!

The Eye Center South Tulsa

Earth Day Wednesday, April 22

This message is from Michael, co director of Alternatives for Simple Living http://www.simpleliving.org

How will you be spending Earth day? We hope you will be able to spend time enjoying creation and support efforts to encourage the wise stewardship of the planet earth.

A common comment these days is "Now is the time we need to start living more simply." Usually this comment is made in the context of the current economic situation, where people are losing their jobs and investment income.

That is a good reason, but I think the reason we need to live more simply is more than adapting to an economic downturn; it is about the survival of human life on earth. "Live simply so others
can simply live" says it clearly. We in the, so called, developed world cannot continue to consume in the fashion or amount we have grown accustomed to and expect that life on Earth will thrive let alone survive.

David Korten, in his new book, Agenda for a New Economy; From Phantom Wealth to Real Wealth writes, "Unless we are voluntary simplicity initiates, we are inclined to increase our consumption in tandem with growth in our income, placing an even greater burden on our planet. We often say with pride, "I can afford it," without asking whether Earth can afford it."

Earth Day asks if the planet can afford humankind's careless use of resources, particularly the extravagance of the richest third of the Earth's inhabitants. Our faith traditions ask whether we are being faithful managers or stewards of God's creation, and reflect back to us, that as we care for creation we are showing love to God and neighbor.

Have a great Earth Day,

Michael

By Greg Taylor Posted in 1

Larry James coming to Garnett April 19

Larry James, CEO of Central Dallas Ministries

Larry James, CEO of Central Dallas Ministries

We’ve invited Larry James, CEO of Central Dallas Ministries, to return after three years and speak to our congregation April 19, 10 am.

Larry and his right hand attorney, John Greenan, gave us the spark and imagination three years ago to launch the Green Country Event Center, a “business as mission” effort to be good stewards of the Garnett Church facility and partner with God in pursuing our community.

Since then, we’ve been learning and enjoying rubbing shoulders with people from all walks of life, from five different churches that meet regularly, several schools including Union GED/ESL, dozens of businesses and people of peace who have come to use our place. We’re on an amazing journey, and Larry is coming to help spark vision again, this time for another phase that includes land around our church as another part of the mission to be good neighbors and make disciples of Christ in East Tulsa.

Your view of life, the poor, the economy, and the kingdom of God will be challenged by what Larry James has to say Sunday, April 19 at Garnett, 10 am. We’ll have a lunch after worship to talk more about our vision and show a video that Lance Newsom is working on that asks a couple dozen people around Garnett and event center, “What’s God up to in your life and this community?” Please join us for worship and lunch!

Blessing of the Sun – Overlap of Christian and Jewish Calendars

Jeff Krisman, co-director of Neighborhood Kitchens, our Wednesday night meal we share with 200 plus each week at Garnett Church of Christ, sat with several of us and gave us an explanation of the Jewish Blessing of the Sun, a once every 28-year occurrence in the Jewish calendar.

Also rare is the overlap of the Christian and Jewish calendars so the celebration of the events of Passover, Cross, Resurrection line up in the way they did originally, with the Last Supper shared in Passover.

And what a rare blessing to have our Jewish friend, Jeff Krisman, share more about his Jewish faith during our Wednesday meal. He was having one unofficial Midrashing (if that’s a word) “Seder” with us then went home for the official Seder meal.

Jeff and his wife, Lori, and friends Morgan (who washes dishes with Kramer Newsom) and Laura (who sits at the welcome table with Lori), also brought Easter Eggs. Jeff said, “It’s not often a Jewish couple brings Easter eggs to give out at a Christian Church.” Yes, that’s right. Jeff and Lori, May your Passover celebration be joyous and filled with hope . . . and may our Christian celebration of redemption at the cross and resurrection be joyous and filled with hope as well.

The Boss @ BOK TONIGHT!

Going to BOK tonight for Bruce Springsteen and I'm pumped as any concert I've ever been to. I don't go to many but said if Springsteen ever comes to T-town, I'm going. Friends Chris and Kristin King, brother Brent, nephew Brandon, and friends from Bartlesville Doug Sanders, Bob Knapp, Roy Kimrey going. We'll meet at Joe Mamma's downtown before. If you are going tonight to the Boss, then see you there and come on up for the Rising.

By Greg Taylor Posted in 1

Highland Church of Christ (Memphis) men leading the way

I’m very impressed with the men at Highland Church of Christ Memphis men’s retreat at Victory Ranch over the weekend. Thanks to Brian and Sarah Hoover, Trent and Kristen Williamson, their families, and all the guys at Highland who hosted my son, Jacob, and me. Thank you so much for a great time.

Enjoyed catching up with some old friends from Harding and it was great to see my favorite professor from Harding Graduate School of Religion in Memphis, Dr. Allen Black. He has been so kind to me that I wasn’t really nervous about presenting 3 sessions on the cross in front of one of my professors. I spoke on the seven sayings/prayers of Jesus at the cross. More than anything, I felt inadequate and humbled about speaking on the cross, period.

Victory Ranch is a remarkable place with climbing wall, 900 feet zip line (we didn’t get to ride that one but swung on a unique cable between trees that swings you 100 feet back and forth and pretty high up). The guys took photos, so I’ll post when I get those.

Jacob and I also enjoyed a visit to New Hope School where Trent Williamson is headmaster. What a great school and incredible work Trent is up to in Memphis.

Hello from Lubbock!

I'm staying with a high school friend and his family and enjoying reconnecting with them. I'm here for the ZOE Conference at the Monterey Church of Christ. I'm involved with ZOE because we help people break free from legalism and experience a new journey with Jesus Christ.

We help people with stepping stones like articles on Wineskins.org, conference experiences in worship, great speakers such as Mike Cope, Jeff Walling, Randy Harris, Scot McKnight, music in CD and printed sheet music for fresh approaches to worship, and a Growing Deeper Spirituality program. Check all this out at http://www.wineskins.org and http://www.zoegroup.org

Plans are to return to Tulsa Saturday night, and I'll be preaching Sunday on Matthew 5:38-42.

May our love with God grow deeper and passion for our world go wider.

–Greg

P.S. Here are the small group questions for this week:

Small Group Questions

Read Matthew 5:38-39

Tell about an experience you've had in your family, work, church where you've seen someone living out Jesus teaching.

Have there been times when your punishment or "justice" exceeded the wrong done? For example, for parents: can you tell about a time when the punishment you gave your children inappropriately exceeded their wrongdoing?

How can we live this teaching out in our homes, work, church, neighborhood?

Read Matthew 5:40-42

Tell about an experience you've had in your family, work, church where you've seen someone living out Jesus teaching.

How can your small group give to those who ask, share your "two coats" with someone in need, go the "extra mile"?

How can we pray for you?

By Greg Taylor Posted in 1

Hello from Lubbock!

I'm staying with a high school friend and his family and enjoying reconnecting with them. I'm here for the ZOE Conference at the Monterey Church of Christ. I'm involved with ZOE because we help people break free from legalism and experience a new journey with Jesus Christ.

We help people with stepping stones like articles on Wineskins.org, conference experiences in worship, great speakers such as Mike Cope, Jeff Walling, Randy Harris, Scot McKnight, music in CD and printed sheet music for fresh approaches to worship, and a Growing Deeper Spirituality program. Check all this out at http://www.wineskins.org and http://www.zoegroup.org

Plans are to return to Tulsa Saturday night, and I'll be preaching Sunday on Matthew 5:38-42.

May our love with God grow deeper and passion for our world go wider.

–Greg

P.S. Here are the small group questions for this week:

Small Group Questions

Read Matthew 5:38-39

Tell about an experience you've had in your family, work, church where you've seen someone living out Jesus teaching.

Have there been times when your punishment or "justice" exceeded the wrong done? For example, for parents: can you tell about a time when the punishment you gave your children inappropriately exceeded their wrongdoing?

How can we live this teaching out in our homes, work, church, neighborhood?

Read Matthew 5:40-42

Tell about an experience you've had in your family, work, church where you've seen someone living out Jesus teaching.

How can your small group give to those who ask, share your "two coats" with someone in need, go the "extra mile"?

How can we pray for you?

By Greg Taylor Posted in 1

Hello from Lubbock!

I'm staying with a high school friend and his family and enjoying reconnecting with them. I'm here for the ZOE Conference at the Monterey Church of Christ. I'm involved with ZOE because we help people break free from legalism and experience a new journey with Jesus Christ.

We help people with stepping stones like articles on Wineskins.org, conference experiences in worship, great speakers such as Mike Cope, Jeff Walling, Randy Harris, Scot McKnight, music in CD and printed sheet music for fresh approaches to worship, and a Growing Deeper Spirituality program. Check all this out at http://www.wineskins.org and http://www.zoegroup.org

Plans are to return to Tulsa Saturday night, and I'll be preaching Sunday on Matthew 5:38-42.

May our love with God grow deeper and passion for our world go wider.

–Greg

P.S. Here are the small group questions for this week:

Small Group Questions

Read Matthew 5:38-39

Tell about an experience you've had in your family, work, church where you've seen someone living out Jesus teaching.

Have there been times when your punishment or "justice" exceeded the wrong done? For example, for parents: can you tell about a time when the punishment you gave your children inappropriately exceeded their wrongdoing?

How can we live this teaching out in our homes, work, church, neighborhood?

Read Matthew 5:40-42

Tell about an experience you've had in your family, work, church where you've seen someone living out Jesus teaching.

How can your small group give to those who ask, share your "two coats" with someone in need, go the "extra mile"?

How can we pray for you?

By Greg Taylor Posted in 1

Hello from Lubbock!

I'm staying with a high school friend and his family and enjoying reconnecting with them. I'm here for the ZOE Conference at the Monterey Church of Christ. I'm involved with ZOE because we help people break free from legalism and experience a new journey with Jesus Christ.

We help people with stepping stones like articles on Wineskins.org, conference experiences in worship, great speakers such as Mike Cope, Jeff Walling, Randy Harris, Scot McKnight, music in CD and printed sheet music for fresh approaches to worship, and a Growing Deeper Spirituality program. Check all this out at http://www.wineskins.org and http://www.zoegroup.org

Plans are to return to Tulsa Saturday night, and I'll be preaching Sunday on Matthew 5:38-42.

May our love with God grow deeper and passion for our world go wider.

–Greg

P.S. Here are the small group questions for this week:

Small Group Questions

Read Matthew 5:38-39

Tell about an experience you've had in your family, work, church where you've seen someone living out Jesus teaching.

Have there been times when your punishment or "justice" exceeded the wrong done? For example, for parents: can you tell about a time when the punishment you gave your children inappropriately exceeded their wrongdoing?

How can we live this teaching out in our homes, work, church, neighborhood?

Read Matthew 5:40-42

Tell about an experience you've had in your family, work, church where you've seen someone living out Jesus teaching.

How can your small group give to those who ask, share your "two coats" with someone in need, go the "extra mile"?

How can we pray for you?

By Greg Taylor Posted in 1