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Unity

We all have favorites.  Favorite shirts, favorite flavors of ice cream, favorite vacation destinations, just to name a few.  Even though they are already our favorites, it is still possible that there can be a moment when they become even more to us.  That was the...

7 Encouraging Verses for a New School Year

It’s that time of year. Kids across the country are heading back to school–some are in their second week of classes already! Regardless of whether the kids are already back in school or they’re preparing to return soon, they (and their parents!) are probably feeling a...

Building a Great Team

Have you ever heard the phrase “teamwork makes the dream work?” At Church of the Shepherd, we believe that teams play a big role in living out our dream–our vision–of making God’s presence known in every person, community, and throughout the world. We trust each other...

Where is God

As we have watched the news this week, a question has formed in my mind that has caused two differing responses in my heart that call for two different actions.  The question that comes to my mind fits well with our In Focus sermon series. Where is God in this?  The...

The Happiest Place on Earth

A Facebook post recently went viral from a mother on a tirade over childless couples visiting Walt Disney World. She was basically upset because she believed families without children were increasing wait times, which made her child cranky on a recent visit. “Disney...

Faith Lessons from The Lion King: Part 3

One of the summer’s most anticipated movies, the live-action remake of Disney’s The Lion King, is in theaters now, and for many of us, it’s a chance to relive our childhood. For others, it’s a chance to share something special from our youth with our own children. And...

Faith Lessons from The Lion King: Part 2

One of the summer’s most anticipated movies, the live-action remake of Disney’s The Lion King, is in theaters now, and for many of us, it’s a chance to relive our childhood. For others, it’s a chance to share something special from our youth with our own children. And...

Addicted to Busyness

Have you ever had a day so filled with to-do’s that you didn’t know where to start?  Or maybe it was a day that you darted from task to task and at the end of the day, you wondered what you had accomplished or what you had forgotten.  Ruth Haley Barton calls this the...

Faith Lessons from The Lion King: Part 1

One of the summer’s most anticipated movies, the live-action remake of Disney’s The Lion King, is in theaters now, and for many of us, it’s a chance to relive our childhood. For others, it’s a chance to share something special from our youth with our own children. And...

Common Ground

The quickest way to build community is to connect with others who have similar interests. Here’s how one Church of the Shepherd member, Cheryl, found a community of her own through her love of books. “Anyone that knows me knows that I love to read! Over the years I’ve...

Beat the Heat This Summer

Summer is a great time to have fun, connect with friends, and meet new people. The kids are out of school, many people take some extra time off work, and there are a lot of fun activities offered (like the End of Summer Splash happening this Sunday)! But with high...

Four Ways to Encourage Our Children

Everyone could use a little bit of encouragement, especially our children. As they grow up, they are exposed to all kinds of new experiences that help shape the person they will become. Here are 4 ways we can help encourage the children in our lives. 1. Admit your...

Building an Encouraging Community

How can we build an encouraging community in a world that is full of pain, hurt, and negativity? Here are three key ways, inspired by 1 Thessalonians 5:11-24: 1. Turn toward the “others.” (1 Thessalonians 5:14-15) An encouraging community means that we don’t turn...

Asking the Right Questions

Three year olds have wonderful, inquisitive minds that are always on. They are exploring new words and new worlds every day, and they explore their words and worlds through a series of questions. What is this? What does this do? Why? These are just a few of the many...

Embracing a Christ-Centered Community

This weekend, Pastor Danny shared with us how the book of Ephesians describes a Christ-centered community as one that lives together in perfect unity. Here are three ways that we can begin to embrace a community like this: 1. Worship Together A united community...

Reflections on Forgiveness

Forgiveness is different for every single human being that lives it.  It might come suddenly for some, while for others it takes a more deliberate process and requires a great deal of effort.  For some, once it comes it is permanent and known, and for others it ebbs...

The Benefits of Forgiveness

God’s love for us comes with the gift of forgiveness, and we are supposed to offer that gift to others. But forgiving someone who has hurt us can be hard. While it may be easier to hold a grudge, offering forgiveness to someone comes with some benefits. Here are some...

How to Forgive

“Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.” - Colossians 3:13 It’s amazing to know that we don’t have to do a single thing for God to forgive us. So how do we go about...

Why We Serve

Why do we serve? Because it’s fun? Because it makes us feel good? Because we want to grow into a bigger church? Those are all reasons, but are they the reasons God intended for us to have? St. Theresa of Avilla put it this way: Christ has no body but yours, No hands,...

The Serving Community

My hometown was smaller than Church of the Shepherd. Like COS, it was full of wonderful people with all the skills and talents needed to make a community. As a community, they, all of them, were there to watch over me, encourage me, teach me, provide boundaries for...

How to be Fearless in 6 Steps

We all have fears, and facing them takes practice. Here are six steps to help you learn to be fearless. Name your fear. It all begins with giving a name to your fear. Owning your fear is the first step to getting past it. It won’t be easy, but addressing your fear out...

Building Community in Our Own Backyard

Did you know the playground behind Church of the Shepherd isn’t just for members of the church? When we built the Let’s Play! Community Playground a little over a year ago, we hoped it would be a place where kids of all abilities could have fun together and serve as a...

Finding Faith on the Ice

Cardinal Nation went Blue this week and most of us learned a whole new meaning of the word “Gloria” as the St. Louis Blues brought home the Stanley Cup. People who had never watched a hockey game were cheering as we watched the last place Blues become first place...

Updates from Puerto Rico

The high school mission team arrived in Puerto Rico on Sunday, June 9, and they have already accomplished so much! Here are just a few of the projects they are working on: Building relationships with students at the Boys and Girls Club Playing games and going on field...

Finding God in the Weeds

We’re often told to “stop and smell the roses.” But Church of the Shepherd member, Karen, shares with us what happened when she stopped to admire, of all things, the weeds!  

How to Practice Sabbath

We are created in the image of God. This statement is full of hope, power, identity, and so much more. It defines who we are. It also defines how we are to be in the world. In addition to being co-creators with God through our work, we are signs and symbols of the new...

The Night Shift: Trusting God While I Sleep

We often think that when we go to bed, the day is done. But God’s day continues! Our Communications Director and first-time mom, Julie Garey, shares her experience with asking God to continue His work through the night. "I never thought much about God continuing to...

8 Scriptures to Help You Face Your Fears

We all have fears, but we don’t have to face them alone. Here are 8 scriptures to turn to when you have a fear of: Loss “He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” -...

10 Ways to be a Spiritual Companion

Spiritual companions are friends who listen, accept, and walk alongside each other as they share their faith. But what makes a great spiritual companion? Here are 10 tips to help you develop a healthy and encouraging spiritual relationship with a friend: Tend to your...

What Is a Spiritual Companion?

“Christian friendships are call-and-response friendships. We tell each other over and over, back and forth, the truth of who we are and who God is. Over dinner and on walks, dropping off soup when someone is sick, and in prayer over the phone, we speak the good news...

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