You Now Have a Marriage Ministry

In the US, there is on average one divorce about every 36 seconds. That's nearly 876,000 divorces a year. The divorce rate only increases as the number of marriages increases, for a couple in their 3rd marriage, the divorce rate is 73%. It's worth knowing that the only thing bringing down the rate of divorce in the country is the fact that fewer people are getting married. More and more people see marriage as something to opt-out of in life.


Financial troubles, miscommunication, affairs, and addictions make getting through life together harder than ever. Not even considering that at any moment you can log onto social media and see some of your "couple friends" doing well, while other couples are calling it quits after one year, three years, even eight years of marriage. We look at our relationships, and wonder, "Can we make it?"


"YES! You can have a GREAT marriage." At Cross Culture we want to be a church of great neighbors, and we appreciate that our closest neighbor is our spouse. So we want to be a church of great marriages actively displaying God's love to our spouses. We kicked off our marriage ministry with a survey of the community and found that the marriages in our church are relatively young and are in good condition. There have been past hurts and a lack of diligence to care for one another in some relationships, and I say that so you know as you read this that you're not alone. 

"we want to be a church of great marriages actively displaying God's love to our spouses."

We have a plan: we will provide resources and tools that will help you have a successful marriage, heal wounds and grow closer together. For example, we will consistently host Marriage Gatherings, an opportunity for couples to connect with others couples. Being together in this intimate group, we help build hope, strength, and joy into marriages with practical lessons and life-changing true stories from other couples. 


We host fun events that enhance intimacy, renew passion, and refresh relationships; events like our upcoming Marriage Social on Saturday, November 10th. Lastly, we have marriage mentors! 82% of couples report wanting to have a mentor couple walk with them, and research shows that couples who have marriage mentors are happier and healthier. 

“82% of couples report wanting to have a mentor couple walk with them."

We want to be a church of great marriages, and we will accomplish this by helping couples maximize their relationships, going from good to excellent, and repair what broke, so life together can be more fulfilling and in harmony.  We started this post with some disturbing statistics. You don't have to be one of those statistics. We're here to help, plug into this community and take advantage of the exceptional resources, tools, events, and connections we have in place to see your marriage succeed.

Leading Past Your Time

Leading is hard! Any type of responsibility is hard.  I have three younger kids. Two boys and a girl. They are beautiful, but parenting them is difficult. One of the hardest parts of parenting is the thousands of books out there on parenting the right way. Which one is it? What’s the best way to be responsible about anything?

I’ve been thinking a lot about legacy and leading past your time.  What I mean by “leading past your time” is leading after you think or society tells you your time is up. In a culture or society where retirement and quick ease is the goal, we need more leaders to keep leading even when they think their time is up.

The biggest lie of leadership in the world is that older leaders need to get out of the way. It’s a lie from Satan.  Here is what happens when the more seasoned leaders completely step out of the way.

*We have young, instant success, under-30 leaders who are training other leaders with much more experience. Dumb success doesn’t equal understanding and wisdom.  This isn’t blog about false successes, but that definitely plays a role in the problems in organizations today. 

*We have young leaders losing steam or confidence because they are making the same mistakes that the leaders did before them. Dumb success catches up to them. We need to find redemption in our mistakes through helping others avoid the same mistakes.


*We only grow wide and not deep. Take a minute and read the parable of the sower in Mark 4. That’s a great description of how easily surface growth can dwindle. Success and growth need to be rooted in a way that lasts.

The best way to grow your organization is through legacy. Legacy takes time and people who have stuck around.

See you Sunday,

Michael  

Stand Up to the Bear

I’ve spent the last week in bear country. Everywhere you go there are signs giving warnings, telling you what to do and what not to do. Don’t leave food out. Carry bear spray. Travel in groups. Don’t go off the trail. Now these are all things that you are to do before you actually meet a bear. You do everything you can to avoid the encounter. But when you actually meet a bear, the rules change. There’s no more avoidance. For most of us, our proclivity would then be to run. Get out of the way of danger. Flee the scene as fast as you can. 

Worship Defined

aaron-burden-307060-unsplash.jpg

Worship defined.

We have been in a series on worship called Unstoppable. In Romans 12:1-2 Paul encourages us that worship must be our response to all that God has done and who He is. 

Worship, ultimately, is ascribing worth or value to someone or something in a way that changes the direction of your life. 

Paul is begging is that we don’t waste the Creator's design for us, and, most certainly, we don’t waste the redemption He has done for us through Jesus Christ.

Take a moment and take inventory on the direction your life is headed. It will surely identify the placement of your worship. 

What do you spend your time, treasures and resources on?

This isn’t a blog intended to guilt or shame anyone. Like Paul says in Romans 12:1, he urges you and I to do what we were designed for, that is to offer our lives to ascribe value to Jesus and the things He values.

Today take some time and change the direction of your life by taking three simples steps:

  1. 10 minutes before bed each night meditate on and read about all He has done for you as His beloved. Romans 8 is a good place to start.
  2. Identify the things that don’t deserve your value. Invite someone in to this conversation that knows you. Ask them what do you think I value the most.
  3. Make a plan to go to church for 6 months in a row to get your worship right. Dedicate 10 minutes a day to repeating step one. 

See you Sunday, 

Michael