Every Graduate’s Guide

 

File May 18, 4 43 59 PM

When I put the cap and gown on again last weekend I sparked something I had not experienced in quite a while.  From all directions I got the question, “So, what do you plan to do next?” My answer is pretty simple.  “I am going to continue doing what I was doing before I graduated.”  I hope my simple response becomes an encouragement to all my fellow graduates and to all the hopeful parents that are asking the what is next question.  Let me explain…

My answer is not a 40 something’s resistance to change or that I am perfectly settled in life; my answer is rooted in a conviction that there are a few simple maxims that bring clarity to almost any situation.  One simple truth helps determine what to do in life, “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you.”  Matthew 6:33   A second simple guide tells me how to do it.  “Whatever you do, do it enthusiastically, as something done for the Lord and not for men.” Colossians 3:23  When I became a Christ follower, I told God I was willing to go wherever He would take me; this launched me on an exciting journey.

As a young crazy 20 year old trying to make it through LSU I became enthusiastic about mirroring my character and actions after what I found in the Bible.  Honestly, through all of life that has changed, for the most part it stays the same.  Whether chemical engineer, dad, husband, friend or pastor I try to live with passion for a single purpose.  Through life I find myself at crossroads which force major decisions, but 99.9% of them are simple choices to do what I know to do “for the Lord and not for men.”

Take heart my fellow graduates and worrying parents alike.  If the pursuit of God’s purposes with an enthusiasm to do everything for Him was the plan; just keep doing what you have always done with confidence in the future.  If your purpose and passion was for anything else, it is still very simple — It’s time for a change.

Love Without Limits?

Line Sand

It is the wide love of God for us that leads us down the narrow road of love.

That’s the bold assertion that we made last Sunday as we launched into the last segment of Jesus’ Sermon On The Mount through our new series, The Right Way.  We zeroed in on the radical breadth of who God loves, how God loves, and why God loves- and what that should mean in the lives of those of us who have received that love through Jesus.  We learned that God’s life changing love is available to all– which means that ours should be too, including (but not limited to)…

  • Those of other racial, ethnic backgrounds
  • Those of other religious faiths (or no faith at all)
  • Those of other political opinions
  • Those of other economic statuses
  • Those of other moral convictions and lifestyles
  • Even those who have wounded us deeply

This list is undoubtedly uncomfortable to consider- and even more so to put into practice.  But as we said on Sunday, while it may be improbable, if the Gospel is true it is not impossible!  After all, if a holy God can love rebels like us (and the Cross of Christ proves that He has), then surely His love can flow through us into the lives of anyone in this world.

But this raises a tension for us, doesn’t it?  How are we supposed to love those with whom we deeply, profoundly disagree?  I’m not talking about petty disagreements, but the “heavy” stuff of life- matters like the sanctity of all human life; the nature of marriage, family, and sexuality; the appropriate response to social and economic injustice; the authority of the Bible; and the truthfulness of the Gospel.  How can we reconcile God’s command to love like He does without compromising core level convictions in the process?  Is this even possible?

I believe God’s answer to that question is a resounding yesbut to get to that yes, we’ve got some ‘splainin’ to do.

I firmly believe that when it comes to the issue of “love”- and what “counts” as “love”- we’ve been sold a lie.  This is a lie that I believe originated in secular thinking, but has deeply infiltrated the thinking of many in God’s church.  What is it?  That love equals agreement, acceptance, and affirmation.  In other words, “If you love me, you’ll agree with me, accept me without hesitation, and affirm my choices without question.”  We see this kind of thinking play out most explicitly when it comes to questions of sexuality, but I believe it informs the way we think now about just about everything.

The lie itself probably shouldn’t surprise us.  But what is truly tragic is to the degree to which supposedly Bible believing, orthodoxy affirming followers of Jesus have bought it without question, and have abandoned centuries of consistent Christian teaching and veered into questionable- and I believe destructive- territory, all because they’ve adopted an insufficient definition of love.  What we must come to see is that a “love” that merely agrees, accepts, and affirms without question or evaluation is actually profoundly unloving– and ultimately ungodly.

The way I see it, we’ve missed the boat on this thing in two directions- both of which arise from this same poisonous root.  Some in the church have blurred the lines between right and wrong, between truth and error, between sin and righteousness.  Others, to the opposite extreme, have taken those lines- as revealed in God’s Word- and used them as weapons to insult, exclude, and elevate themselves over others in self-righteous judgment.  But in both cases, the same lie is in play- in the former case, if I love you then I must agree with you, and in the latter, if I disagree with you I don’t have to love you.  So what, then, is the alternative to these two “ditches”?  Again, as it always is, the Gospel is our guide.  Consider…

  • God makes the truth clear- and so should we. God doesn’t play “hide and seek” with us on issues of right and wrong.  While His Word may not address every potential nuance we face in life, it is decidedly not lacking in clarity on the big questions we face on a day in, day out basis.  It is critical as the people of God that we understand this revealed truth well and express it clearly as we have opportunity.  Now we must be humble here, recognizing that while God is infallible, we are not- which means that we need to keep pressing in for rich understanding and right application.
  • God demonstrates active love toward those who reject His truth- and so should we. At one time, all of us rejected God’s truth- apart from His gracious intervention, “there is no one righteous- no, not one!”  And yet God was gracious, kind, and compassionate toward us- so much so that He sent Jesus from heaven to earth to pay the price for our sin and provide us an opportunity to repent of that sin, and to trust and follow Him.  As 2 Peter 3:9 declares, “God is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.”  This heart ought to be reflected in the way we approach and engage with those who reject God- just as we once did.
  • God was willing to endure suffering to see others rescued- and so should we. This is the most stunning aspect of the Gospel- that the holy God of heaven would willfully submit Himself to unjust suffering so that His enemies could know His saving love.  Crazy as that sounds, that’s the standard that He sets for us too- not that we would literally go to the Cross to redeem those with whom we disagree, but that we would be willing to be misunderstood and mistreated for the sake of the Gospel.  This isn’t only true for those in hostile global contexts, but also for those of us in everyday life in a culture that is increasingly emboldened in its opposition to the truth revealed in God’s Word.  What if, instead of virulently fighting for our “rights” (although I am a big believer in religious liberty for all), we went the second mile to seek to understand our “enemies” and guide them toward true satisfaction and freedom in submission to our Creator?  There is no guarantee how that ends up, but the clear witness of God’s Word is that that’s our calling and responsibility.

To summarize, when it comes to the idea of “love without limits,” what we find is that there are limits to what we can in good conscience agree with, accept, and affirm– but that there are not limits to the actions we take to see those held captive by sin’s deception set free by the grace of God.  I want to encourage and challenge you today to consider which of the above “ditches” you are most prone to stumble into, and to instead walk in God’s supernatural strength to love others even when it is messy- just as you yourself have been loved by this God.

 

Shout Out To My Fellow Pastors

Humility – Blessing others, looking to other’s interests, encouraging others…considering others BETTER than you. I SUCK AT HUMILITY. That’s what I want to do in this blog post. I am not as good as think I am and I want to shout out to those who are better! There are a group of fellas, fellow Pastors who I admire, respect, and love to serve with at Fellowship Church. This is a shout out to them, by letting you know the great qualities of each of them. They are better than me.

Pastor Kirk – Kirk Jones is the type of dude who is unapologetic-ally himself. The authenticity he brings to our staff and to our church is the same guy I know off the stage. What you get from our lead pastor when he preaches is the same guy you get if you are ever in a one on one conversation with him. This dude has massive vision and desires to take us to the next level yearly. If I have a question he’s got an answer. If he sees an issue, he’ll address it on the spot with the truth in love. He has called out my ignorance a few times in a truthful way that more so uplifted me than put me down. If I want honesty, Kirk is the man I want to hear it from. Kirk knows how to communicate truth as a preacher. Though our styles may be different, Kirk has a way to simplistically and profoundly sharpen your mind with the truth of scripture in his own uniqute way. I have served as youth pastor under 4 pastors, and Kirk is my favorite one to listen to as a preacher. Kirk Jones, is always Kirk Jones. He is the most interesting man on the planet, stay “Kirk-y” my friends.

Pastor Brian – Brian Robert has the heart of 10 men. I believe Brian has the biggest heart for people on our staff. This dude is a relentless servant for people and he is a representation of a man who goes the 2nd and sometimes the 3rd mile. Many of our students see him as a father figure type, a guy who has wisdom for a thousand years and the kind of counselor I enjoy learning from. In situations where I might throw a tantrum and show utter frustration, Brian is a guy who demonstrates the patience I crave. Brian is a man’s man, a guy I think all of us should strive to be like. I have loved working with this dude as a partner in ministry, and even more, I have loved learning and growing as a man through seeing him live his life. Brian Robert is your best friend and you don’t even know it!

Pastor Todd – Todd Blount is the smartest man alive! Todd is an incredible communicator and is just an overall sharp dude. Todd looks like he is in his late 20’s with the wisdom of a 60 year old. Todd is a great representation of the Perfect Punctual (Though we all know he is far from perfect) I doubt this dude sins 5 times a day (Again, a lie but that’s how much integrity I see in this dude). Todd is the kind of guy you want on your team. He is listens, gives solid advice, and knows how to stay on top of tasks, family, and ministry. His priorities are to my knowledge never in any kind of chaos, and he always desires to serve the Lord and study the scriptures in both quality and quantity. My dude Todd is a guy you want to listen to and model after when it comes to various aspects of life, but ultimately, his devotion as a disciple to the Word of God. Todd Blount’s memory is so good he has the whole Church’s birthdays memorized!

Pastor Jonathan – Jonathan Ickles is the most animated dude I have ever met. Anybody that knows Jonathan knows they will get a laugh within the first few minutes of knowing him, and if you know him, you just look at him and laugh. Ickles is a guy who just loves life and loves to laugh. I learned when  I was in high school that I HAVE to learn to laugh at myself, and I have always been good at that. Jonathan is a dude who I can actually joke with and get a joke right back. Most of the time I like to set him up to make fun of me just because I want to laugh! Jonathan is the kind of father I want to be. Dude has 5 kids, and makes time for every single one of them in a very unique way. He makes them each feel like they’re the best kid on earth. I want to enjoy life as much as Jonathan Ickles. As a guy who struggles a lot with anxiety, I can always use more laughter and clown myself. He is also my favorite worship pastor. He is better than Christ Tomlin, David Crowder, the guy who leads Hillsong United (whoever that is), and whoever your favorite is, Jonathan Ickles is better. He’s your favorite worship leader’s favorite worship leader. Jonathan Ickles smells like comedy, take a whiff and laugh for 3.5 hours.

I love these Pastors. I have learned so much from them and am blessed to serve on such a great pastoral team. I am the Pastor I am today at Fellowship Church because I work with these dudes. God has blessed every single one of these dudes with gifts and abilities better than mine. I cannot wait to keep learning from them. I pray, you feel the same way! Love Your Pastors!

Keep it Real (and a note about Mother’s Day)

Keeping it real is one of the 4 core actions at Fellowship Church.  We believe it is essential to living a life of faith.  It requires willingness to be 2 things.  Be authentic and be unique.

Unfortunately, most people find it difficult to be authentic and unique in a healthy manner.  Often uniqueness is confused with being eccentric and authenticity is confused with selfish rudeness.  This, however, is not what they mean.

There is no clearer call to authenticity in Scripture than when we are taught in James 5:16 , “Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed.”  Authenticity requires the willingness to share your struggles not just your successes.  True authenticity even leads us to discussing how these things became true in our lives.  A place and group to be authentic is not easy to find and is even harder to maintain.  Authenticity is always only one cover up or lie away from being lost.

I hope you are finding some people who are following hard after Christ you can be authentic with.  The number one way to experience that is to become the type of person that others believe they can be authentic with.  Become the type of confidant that can be trusted to listen with grace, speak truth with love, and mourn with the mourning.  Keeping it real starts with you.  I know it is a scary proposition, but lead out.

Being unique does not mean a person needs to look radically different or stand out physically.  Uniqueness means honoring the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives.  In 1 Corinthians 12 we are taught, “Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.”  God did not make you good at what you are good at simply for your good, but for everyone’s good.

Many believers fail to ever take their unique place in the Kingdom of God simply because they do not see (or want to see) the value of investing their talents and gifts in the spiritual well-being of others.  How are other people growing in their faith and life because of who God made you uniquely?  If you cannot answer that question with clarity, I pray you will dive deep into what it means to be gifted by God and to use those gifts for his glory.  Invite a mature believer into this journey and ask them to hold you accountable to finding a place to serve the Lord within the church and allow them to speak wisdom into how you might be gifted to do that.

This Sunday is an opportunity at Fellowship to Keep it Real.  Mother’s Day is a great celebration that someone came up with.  It is not a Biblical holiday.  It has no command or calling behind it.  Yet, mothers find it meaningful and encouraging.  It is a great opportunity for us to honor one another above ourselves.

There is, however, a dark side to such a celebration.  Many women find Mother’s Day to be one of the most difficult days of the year.  They have experienced the pains of infertility, loss of child, miscarriages, and abortions.  This day is often a hard reminder instead of a joyful celebration.  Fellowship has some ladies of great faith that lead in our church that have experienced such pains personally.  This year one of the ladies that leads out in ladies’ ministry is hosting a special time for ladies that find this day difficult.  (That difficulty might also be because of recent loss of one’s own mother or broken and damaged relationships with your own children – for whatever reasons.)  We simply want to give a place for ladies dealing with these pains to Keep it Real with one another.  You will study the Word together, pray together, and encourage one another.  We are not publishing the details for this event publicly because of the private nature of it, so if you are interested in this event please email us today at alanoux@gmail.com and someone will contact you with the information.

Tell A Better Story

Book

Last week, I had the great privilege of traveling- along with Pastors Kirk, Brian, and Griff- to Atlanta, Georgia for three days of refreshing, energizing, and challenging training for pastors and leaders.  The theme of the conference we attended was For Our Neighbors, which- if I keeping it completely real with you here- didn’t do much for me initially.  After all, I figured, I’m already a pretty neighbor-ly guy.  Tell me something I don’t already know!

Well, as is often the case in life and faith, often what we need isn’t the revelation of something new, but rather the repetition of something old.  And as we traveled back home on Friday evening, I was pretty confident that God has said exactly what He intended to say to me in our three days away.

You don’t need me to tell you this, but it hasn’t been the easiest, most pleasant year in our community- or in our nation, for that matter.  We’ve stared down- and continue to face today- a potent combination of challenges, from natural disasters to racial tensions to political drama to the everyday maladies that come our way in this broken world.

I have my stories.
You have your stories.
We have our stories.
And in the midst of that turmoil, we all have a choice to make- particularly so as the people of God, called by His name.

Can we tell a better story?

Ryan Leak, one of the presenters at last week’s event, said something striking about the current state of affairs in our world- “If things are as bad as we say they are (and they may well be!), then now is the best time we’ve had in a long time to make a difference for good.”  Do you believe this?  If so, does your life as a follower of Jesus reflect that?

Let’s face it- It would be very easy to wither under the onslaught of sin’s effects in our lives and in our world today.  It would be easy to complain and condemn.  It would be easy to hunker down and isolate ourselves.  It would be easy to descend into the battle using the world’s weapons and ways.  It would be easy to give up the fight altogether.  Chances are, we’ve all tried on one or more of these strategies at some point.

But if we believe our own message as followers of Jesus, then we should be neither surprised by the state of the world we’re in, nor cynical about God’s ability to bring restoration into even the most broken of situations and circumstances.  And as His representatives and ambassadors this side of heaven, it’s our responsibility and opportunity to speak that truth- and to live it too!

Can we tell a better story?

Here are a few ways I believe we can, starting right now…

  • When literal storms rage (and they do!), we can be on the leading edge of caring with compassion for those afflicted and impacted, working to help them put the pieces of their homes and lives back together. By the way, this is one we’ve seen firsthand in a powerful way over the past nine months…but the need isn’t behind us yet.  Consider coming out this Saturday, May 6 for our next Geaux Day to serve families still rebuilding!
  • When storms of moral confusion rage (and they are!), we can point with conviction and compassion (both as essential) to the gracious design of a Creator who is working not for our harm, but rather for our joy. Even as we are often misunderstood and mischaracterized, we can stand ready to welcome the world-worn “refugees” of a sexual “revolution” that has left in its wake far more victims (especially women and children) than victors.
  • When storms of racial tension rage (and they are!), we can work to build bridges of empathy and understanding among different groups, seeking healing and reconciliation in real relationships with others. As followers of Jesus, we have the unique opportunity to demonstrate to the watching world the power of a Christ-centered diversity that finds its power in a shared identity that doesn’t deny our differences, but does transcend them.
  • When storms of political division rage (and they are!), we can steadfastly refuse to take up the world’s weapons of hatred and hostility, and instead contend for Christ-exalting convictions while at the same time demonstrating Christ-like character. We can hold up our ultimate allegiance to a King and a Kingdom that transcends the temporary, and hold to the confidence that He is indeed sovereign over all the affairs of humankind, even when that is tough to see.  On this basis, we can trade in the “pocket change” of temporary political wins for the bottomless riches of His eternal victory- and then work in love to see light overcome darkness in the meantime.
  • When storms of spiritual aimlessness rage (and they are!), we can bear witness to the wanderers that there is an Answer to all their longings- and His name is Jesus Christ. We can demonstrate that it is in Him alone that the peace, purpose, justice, joy, hope, and love for which we’re all searching can be fully and finally found.

Friends, as the people of God, called by His name, we have a better story.  God has given that to us in the person and work of Jesus Christ in the Gospel.  He now calls us to raise our voices and proclaim it in word and deed to the watching, wondering, wandering, weary world- not simply as a religious story confined to our pews and pulpits on Sundays, but as a rescue story released in power through every corner of our lives every single day.  That’s our opportunity.  That’s our responsibility.  That’s our privilege!

Will you tell a better story?

Are Your Prayers Really Repentant?

“Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from the belly of the fish:

Jonah 2:1

Jonah, one of the most beloved children’s stories. As a kid I remember reading books on Jonah. Seeing the pictures of him fleeing away from God’s command to go preach to Nineveh. He’s sitting in wooden boat’s bottom deck with a wicked look on his face as if he really fled from an omnipresent God, with God’s brilliant light shining at the bottom of the deck to show Jonah, “I can’t believe you as a prophet think you can actually outrun me!” God has to laugh right? All of a sudden the sailors are freaking out that there is a storm that is about to rip apart their precious boat and cargo while Jonah is snoozing. “What are you doing? Wake up! Call to your god!” Jonah has a conversation with these pagan sailors about his ethnicity and boldly declaring his faith in the God he worships, “The God of the heavens who made the sea and the dry land.” Reading the rest of Jonah 1 you will see that Jonah has the sailors throw him off the boat (as if he could not do it himself) to stop the madness and a great fish swallows him. Growing up we look at Chapter 2 of Jonah and think it is so incredible that Jonah is in prayer. Once again, the books portray Jonah being in a dome like structure, not a fishes belly I guess for being to graphic. This dude is in muck and gross-ness! He is in the digestive system of a fish, not a dome! But where we get really pumped up, is when Jonah is praying! We shout “Woo! Jonah is about to repent, he is about to get it in with God!” We get inspired and without actually dissecting his prayer we move on. From studying this passage there are 3 things I see in this text that show a very unrepentant prayer. A prayer that kind of looks like some of ours.

First of all, the beauty of this text starts in verse 1, “Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from the belly of the fish:” Jonah has rebelled yet this text still says the Lord is his God. Check this: Your salvation and access to God is not determined by how much you obey him, it is only determined by His love for you. This is grace. The gospel is God coming after us. And God has not abandoned Jonah, Jonah has abandoned God. God loves him, and he loves you too. However, look at Jonah’s prayer and compare it to sometimes how we pray. We will see it is not really a prayer of repentance.

Jonah 2:2-9.

2 I called to the Lord in my distress,† and he answered me. I cried out for help from deep inside† Sheol;† you heard my voice.† 3 You threw me into the depths,† into the heart of the seas,† and the current† overcame me. All your breakers and your billows swept over me.† 4 But I said, “I have been banished† from your sight,† yet I will look once more† toward your holy temple.† 5 The water engulfed me up to the neck;†† the watery depths overcame me; seaweed was wrapped around my head.† 6 I sank to the foundations of the mountains,† the earth’s gates shut behind me forever!† Then you raised my life† from the Pit, Lord my God!† 7 As my life was fading away,† I remembered the Lord,† and my prayer came to you,† to your holy temple.† 8 Those who cherish worthless idols† abandon their faithful love,† 9 but as for me, I will sacrifice† to you with a voice of thanksgiving.† I will fulfill† what I have vowed. Salvation† belongs to the Lord.”†

The Essence of Jonah’s Prayer:

  1. Crying out IN Affliction rather than FROM Affection. Vs. 2-3

Sometimes we run to God only in our emergency more than we just want to run to him. Jonah should have already been praying. It took being swallowed up for him to hit his knees. Don’t get me wrong, praying from emergency is better than not praying at all. However, true disciples of The Way will want to go to God always in prayer.

  1. Attributing God as the Cause of Danger rather than our own Rebellion. Vs. 3-7

We need to realize that some of us are in trouble because of our constant disobedience. Our disobedience can drive us to dark places. Jonah kept saying that God threw him in the depths and all his creation overcame him. We can’t always say “Satan is just attacking me right now” when Satan is actually winning! God is sovereign but what gets us into pits of despair isn’t always a trial, it’s  because of our own faults. Yes, God still hears you, and you are never far from God, but God is wanting you to look to Him not to talk about all that you’re In. God wants to uproot your rebellion but he wants a repentant heart.

  1. Superficial Spirituality. Vs. 9.

Superficial spirituality looks and sounds holy and good but it’s not authentic. It focuses on Self . It Prays only in tough circumstances and it excuses ones sins but is quick to talk about others’ sins. Jonah says “Those who cherish worthless idols abandon their faithful love.” Does that describe you? Praying a prayer just to get by? Yelling to God about everything you are in and what’s going on around you rather than saying “God  I have failed because of my utterly sinful heart!” I cannot with good conviction say Jonah is repentant when the only sin he points out is others.

Christian, there is hope for you still like there was still hope for Jonah. Once again, the Lord is still your God! You might be in a pit but you are not dead!  J.D. Greear says, “The real pit is separation from God, not a particular circumstance.” Sometimes we need to evaluate our prayer lives and the hearts behind them. God desires a heart after him! Don’t act Jonah, walk in obedience delighting in the Lord your God.

The Indescribable

Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift.  (2 Corinthians 9:15)

There is no gift greater than God’s grace.

In 2 Corinthians 9 Paul is exhorting and encouraging the people of God to be generous because God is generous.  He teaches them to give cheerfully and not begrudgingly nor because of requirement or expectation.  The teaching is that God is a good and gracious God and generosity honors him and brings him praise.

I believe one of the greatest dangers for a Christ-follower is to lose one’s appreciation for the grace of God.  It is easy to take grace for granted.  If we are not careful in how we consider the love and work of Christ, we fail to consider fully and truthfully the grace of God.  The value of our forgiveness becomes common place.  The cost for our souls is not purposefully belittled, we simply fail to stop and consider the gift we have received.  We begin – if we are not careful – to treat that which is indescribable as something much less than it is because we have learned the words that are accurate theologically and we know the truths that are right doctrinally.  Those are so important but never allow what you understand theologically and doctrinally to lose its value personally.

This Easter Season I want to encourage you to do a few things to help you celebrate the inexpressible, unfathomable, and immeasurable grace of God given to you in Jesus Christ.

  1. Meditate on the events and happenings of the Passion of Christ. (Matthew 21-28, Mark 11-16, Luke 19-24, and/or John 12-21) Read it and consider that it happened.  Try to put yourself there.  Watch The Passion of the Christ to help you consider fully what grace cost.  Your salvation is a free gift to you because a high price was paid for you.
  2. Share your story of grace with someone who does not know the grace of God. Tell someone else the story of when and how you came to know Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord. Tell them about how you learned about grace and forgiveness.  Tell them there is no greater gift than the grace of God and I want to share the greatest gift I have ever received with you.  FCers, use your chess piece and have a conversation about how you met the King.
  3. Bring someone (or many some ones) to church with you this weekend.
    80% of people who do not attend church regularly say they would go to church if someone invited them – especially for a holiday.  Go to church with them.  If your church has multiple services work it out where you will be in worship service with the people you bring.  If you have people coming to multiple services (because you are truly BEING A BRINGER) then go to service with the person you think will feel most awkward without you – or attend worship multiple times.  This will give you the opportunity to discuss what is taught with them later.
  4. Spend some time with your family focusing on Jesus and not candy or eggs. I am not bashing eggs or killing bunnies here, but let’s be honest, they have nothing to do with Jesus or his death and resurrection.  They can, though.  Eggs can be used to tell the story of salvation.  (https://www.amazon.com/Resurrection-Eggs-12-Piece-Religious-Figurines/dp/1602003920)  Honestly, I am not sure how to redeem the bunny myth, but make sure that you are focused on truth with your kids.  Specifically ask these questions and have these conversations.  –  Do you know why Jesus needed to die for us?  Because we are sinners. –   Do you know why Jesus would die for us?  He loves us. –   Where is Jesus now?  Reigning on His throne in Heaven at the right hand of God.

The gift of God’s grace is indescribable.
His love is immeasurable.
His glory is unfathomable.

So share it, shine it, and spread the great hope that our Savior lives!