Making reproducing disciples of Jesus Christ

Posts by Matthew Rowley (Page 3)

River Reach News 1/5

You thought about it today.  You used it.  You spent it.  You may have earned it.  Yes, I’m talking about that thing that is so critical in our lives that it touches almost every aspect of our lives: money.  Does God care about money?  Does He care what you and I do with our wealth?  Though God did not create the dollar, He understands that how we handle money directly reveals His greatest interest, our hearts.  Money reveals what we treasure.  What we treasure reveals the priorities of our hearts (Matthew 6:19-21).  This Sunday I will begin a 6-8 week series on the stewardship of money in our morning service.  Brian and Josh will continue that series the following weeks in our adult Sunday Class.  God’s Word has a lot to say about wealth and how we out to handle it.  I hope you will join us for this new series and learn how to honor the Lord from the heart!

Happy New Year! / River Reach New 12/29

It is shocking that I am shocked every year at how fast the year went by!  2018 is almost here and 2017 is almost in the books.  A new year is a God-given opportunity for personal reflection and evaluation.  What does it take to have a great year?  Does it come from the power of positive thinking?  Is a great year simply the result of random fate or luck?  Is it solely dependent on the shear determination of my will to do better or be better this next annum?  For the child of God, every year can be a great year because God’s offer of grace never changes!  Because of Jesus Christ’s redemption for us, our heavenly Father offers to us the components that make for a great year.  As we near the precipice of the new year we long for a year of success, satisfaction, joy, and a happy new year.  In Isaiah 55, the prophet invites us to turn from the emptiness of vain pursuits to the source of true satisfaction in Jesus Christ.  The best part about this offer is that the price has already been paid to purchase for us the sources of true satisfaction that will sustain us in 2018 and every year following.  Join us this Sunday as we rejoice in the goodness of God’s rich blessing offered to us in Isaiah 55.

Christmas Eve Service at 10:00am

For the believer there is a tension in everyday life between the promises of God and the reality of what we are experiencing.  That tension could be a health battle, time crunch, relationship tension, or any number of other issues.  At this time of year we catch glimpses of the nativity scene and the Christmas story as recounted in the Gospels.  Beyond the familiarity of these accounts, God reveals to us several important lessons concerning the unfolding of His sovereign plan.  Just as the birth of Christ is the fulfillment of God’s sovereign plan, the sovereignty of God also rules in the unfolding of God’s plan for our lives.  This Christmas Eve Sunday I would like to observe several truths from Christ’s birth and early years that will also encourage us in the unfolding of God’s plan in our lives.

River Reach News 12/8

I think it is fitting that Christmas falls at the end of the year.  Life has a way of weighing us down. If we get caught up in the race of life throughout the year, it is easy for our attention to to be diverted from a Christ-focus to a life-focus. The inevitable result will be increased emptiness and weariness.  Discontentment driven by a desire for more earthly comfort and gratification will soon leave us empty.  Our fallen nature leaves us extremely susceptible to self-motivated living rather than faith motivated pursuit of God and His will.  In Isaiah 7-8 we find the nation of Judah caught again in such a trap.  Once again their own way leads to devastation and emptiness. Have you been caught in the same trap?  Thank God He doesn’t leave us in our darkness!  The story of Christmas reminds us that God shines the light of hope into even the darkest night!

River Reach News 10/27 / Fall Fun Fest!

Have you ever been caught in a situation that just seemed hopeless?  Everywhere you look is a closed door, a dead end road, or a deep pit.  Everything you try fails and leaves you even further behind.  These elements are the components of a perfect nightmare!  I need hope.  I need to know there is a solution.  Mankind is caught in such a nightmare.  We are sinners by nature without any capability to solve our greatest problems.  We are like a ship with holes in it that only continue to grow.  We try to make patches and repair gaping holes only to find that the material we are working with is corrupt and worthless.  The gash continues to grow!  Without external intervention our destination will be doom.  Thank God He offers hope to every sinner!

River Reach News 10/20

One of the most deceitful and undetectable sins is the sin of pride.  Pride infiltrates to the inner core of our beings and sabotages the roots of our thinking.  It reprograms our logical rationale and skews our self-perception.  Pride is an unabashed self-seeker.  Pride will not stop till we have dethroned God in our own minds and hearts and placed ourselves on His throne.  Pride is crafty enough to let us believe that we honor God while in reality we have left Him as only a puppet to approve of our own sovereignty.  Pride gives us the license to pursue all other sins.  Because pride is a direct rival to God, He has placed it at the top of His enemy list (Isaiah 2:11-12).

River Reach News 10/13

It is almost impossible to keep up with how fast our world is changing.  Some of the change is good, but it seems like the advance of ungodliness is accelerating rapidly.  This reality does not come as a shock to Christians who read their Bibles (2 Peter 3:3-4; 2 Timothy 3:1-5).  Should we live in fear?  Should we join the world in living for ourselves?  In the midst of a society very similar to ours, the prophet Isaiah sees a vision of the future that gives us solid hope and challenges us in the present to seek first the kingdom of God.

River Reach News 10/6

No relationship ever stays the same. Relationships are constantly changing because people are constantly changing. Friendships from school, or past employments that once were very close often drift apart due to the separation of distance and time. Our relationship with God is constantly changing not because God changes, but because we are always changing.