Growth Group Highlights

The vision of The People Church | First Baptist Moriarty is to Build Community, Give Hope, and Make Disciples. Our Growth Groups serve as a key resource for Making Disciples by creating an environment for discipleship and leadership development to take place.  This happens by focusing on six different areas: fellowship, teaching, prayer, ministry, accountability, and multiplication.

Each month we will highlight a different Growth Group to allow you to get to know others in the church and maybe learn about ministries that you may be unfamiliar with. This month we are highlighting the Chavez Growth Group.

Group Leader:  Paul & Mickey Chavez

  1. How long have you been leading this Growth Group? About 6 years.
  1. When and where do you meet? Sunday mornings at 9:15 a.m. at The People Church in Room 516.
  1. Who is the “typical” member of your group? We have no particular age group. Everyone that comes will feel welcome.
  1. What curriculum are you studying? D-Life Bible Study which allows us to open up God’s Word and learn directly from Him.
  1. What fellowship and mission activities have you had in the past six months? The last six months have been challenging for us, since we have had many illnesses and other people traveling. For fellowship we do go to dinner together. Our mission activities during the past six months include the following:
    1. We helped people in our group and church first, since we all know that charity starts in the home.
    2. We fed animals displaced by the Dog-head Wild Fire.
    3. We visited people that can no longer come to church, and we gave them lots of love.
    4. We provided money for people in financial trouble.
    5. We ministered to hospice residents at Kaseman Hospital in Albuquerque.
  1. What fellowship and mission activities are scheduled for the next few months? We plan to continue our practice of going to dinner together. As a mission activity our plan is to help with the lunch project for the school Bible clubs.
  1. What are some other interesting facts about your group? We are unique in actions and looks. (Ha-Ha!) We are blessed because we all want to know more about God’s Word. We also have a missionary in our class! How did this happen? While he was in dire need for a job, he asked us to pray for him. We did, and within one week he was called. There was a catch…he had to go 3,270 miles to Hawaii. As a result, he has been able to share the gospel with so many people. God has blessed us!
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Create Something by Ryne Swann

As I type this, I am also watching a lyric video on YouTube, that is the handiwork of someone who is obviously a fan of the band Gungor. The song is “Beautiful Things” and the creator of the video has written all the lyrics, segment by segment, on a single page in a spiral notebook. He then, with much creativity and beauty, rotates the notebook as needed so that we see the written words of what is being sung. It is hard to imagine, but if you go to YouTube and type in “Beautiful Things Lyrics” it will be the first video that isn’t an ad.

Now the thing that really caught my attention about this video, was not the melody, nor the lyrics, though I do love the song. The thing that jumped out at me was the fact that this was made by someone not affiliated with Gungor, or the song, in anyway. This person did this out of sheer inspiration. He didn’t have to make it, and he most likely didn’t get paid anything to make it. He heard the song, liked it, and created something based on it.

And this is not the only video that has been created from a Gungor song. There are several more that people have put some work in to. There are some that people just copied and pasted the lyrics into an automatic video maker, but there are several that people custom made out of inspiration given by the song. Now this type of thing, especially lyric videos, is done for all kinds of artists, but for now, I am just going to focus on the ones created from a song written by Gungor.

I recently listened to an interview with Michael Gungor, the lead singer of Gungor, and in it he talked about how the band has never, and most likely will never, fit in to any genre boxes. They just create songs and albums that are as creative as possible at that time. They don’t settle for what is popular; they make what they feel like they should make. Because of this, they have attracted quiet a following of loyal and inspired fans. And there is something to be said about the level of creativity that their music inspires.

What if we, as believers, looked at the beautifully complex and wonderful creation that God, the most creative being and the one from whom all creativity comes, has made, and we were inspired in the same way. What would our response be? It would be to create. Now I know what you are thinking: God didn’t make me an artist; I couldn’t draw a straight line to save my life; I couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket let alone create a song. Well the wonderful thing about creating something that is based on the creativity of God is, it doesn’t have to be the Mona Lisa.

The video that was based on “Beautiful Things” by Gungor that I was talking about earlier, was created by someone simply writing the words on a piece of paper. And that video has over 1,000,000 views, because it was created out of inspiration. Not all artistic creations will seem to be on par to be displayed in the Louvre, but when we really look at and are inspired by God’s creation (whether it be skies, mountains, humans, love, babies, grass, water, rainbows, animals, or anything else) we should be inspired enough to create something as a response.

Another reason we should try making something in response to God, is because of how we are made. We are made in God’s image, and He is creative enough to make all that you see. So even when we don’t feel like it, know that we have some part of us that is creative.

My challenge is simple: Create something. It can be a painting, a poem, a song, a computer graphic, an essay, a sculpture, a written prayer, or ANYTHING else that you can think of. God deserves all we have to offer, so let’s try to create something simply because we are inspired by God and His amazing creations.

Beyond the Series – Part 1 by Dennis Garcia

I once heard it said that when making a movie, the majority of the film used ends up on the cutting room floor during the editing process. There are similarities when it comes to planning a sermon or sermon series. One of the most difficult decisions is not deciding what to say or talk about. That is actually one of the easier tasks. The most difficult thing is deciding what gets left out.

We are now half way through our 10-week series on the Holy Spirit. While this is one of the longer series we’ve done over the past 4 1/2 years, it really could have, and maybe should have, been between 20-25 weeks. So during this series I’ve decided to use my newsletter article to touch on some of the subjects that we will not get to during the series.

One of the often overlooked ministries of the Holy Spirit throughout scripture was His ministry to Jesus. From birth to resurrection the Holy Spirit was with Jesus, helping Him, and caring for Him.

In the Gospels of Matthew and Luke we find the birth story of Jesus. In both instances the authors make it clear that Jesus was born to Mary, a virgin, by the work of the Holy Spirit. Matthew writes, “The birth of Jesus Christ came about this way: After His mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, it was discovered before they came together that she was pregnant by the Holy Spirit.” (Matt. 1:18) In Luke, when Mary asked how it would be possible for her, a virgin, to have a child, the angel Gabriel said, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore, the holy One to be born will be called the Son of God.” The virgin birth of Jesus was possible because the Holy Spirit was involved.

The next time we see them interacting is at the baptism of Jesus. All four gospel writers record the event. As Jesus came up out of the water they witnessed the Holy Spirit, in the form of a dove, descending from heaven and resting on Jesus. (Matthew 3:16, Mark 1:10, Luke 3:22 and John 1:32) This event was significant in the life of Jesus and marked the beginning of His public ministry. Not only was the Holy Spirit present as Jesus’ birth, but also at the birth of His ministry.

Immediately after His baptism, the Holy Spirit led Jesus off into the wilderness for His showdown with the devil (Matthew 4:1-11, Mark 1:12-13 Luke 4:1-12). For 40 days and nights Jesus fasted and prayed. At the end of this time, Jesus was tempted by Satan. Three times He was tempted and three times He resisted. Since we know that the presence of the Holy Spirit never leaves us, it is implied that the Holy Spirit not only led Jesus to the wilderness but also led Him through the wilderness.

Finally, it was the Holy Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead. In Romans 8:11, Paul writes, “Moreover if the Spirit of the one who raised Jesus from the dead lives in you, the one who raised Christ from the dead will also make your mortal bodies alive through his Spirit who lives in you.”

The Holy Spirit equipped, empowered, guided and ministered to Jesus just as He does to us. It is the Holy Spirit that gives us new life. It is the Holy Spirit that seals us for salvation. It is the Holy Spirit that leads us through the wilderness. It is the Holy Spirit that empowers us for life and ministry. It is the Holy Spirit that lives within us and makes us alive.