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The NewLife Blog

April 5, 2022 by Eric Stillman 0 comments

A demonstration of the Spirit's power

Since the beginning of 2022, we have been focusing on prayer and revival at NewLife. Revival, simply put, is an increase in the presence and power of God in the church and in the community. Listen to how J.D. Greear explained it in his book Jesus Continued: Why the Spirit Inside You is Better than Jesus Beside You: “In an awakening, the Spirit of God does not typically do a ‘new’ thing; he simply pours greater power upon the ‘normal’ things faithful Christians are already doing. Prayers become more intense; worship becomes more joyous; repentance becomes more sorrowful; and the preached Word yields greater effect. The Spirit of God multiplies the effectiveness of our ‘normal’ work of seed-planting, bringing a bountiful harvest. And he does more in a moment than we can accomplish in a lifetime.”...Keep Reading

Posted in: Prayer Tags: Prayer, D.L. Moody, Holy Spirit

March 29, 2022 by Eric Stillman 0 comments

Master's level praying

One of the tensions of the Christian life is that while salvation is so simple that even a five-year-old can have genuine saving faith, discipleship is so sophisticated that even the most devoted Christian will never arrive at perfection this side of heaven. While “faith like a child” brings us into a genuine relationship with God (Matthew 18:3-5), we will never come close to plumbing the depths of the wisdom and knowledge of God (Romans 11:33). In the same way, while it is accurate to say that on the one hand, prayer is as simple as “talking to God,” there are also heights and depths of prayer that are so much more advanced that than simple definition....Keep Reading

Posted in: Prayer Tags: Prayer, Discipleship, E.M. Bounds

March 22, 2022 by Eric Stillman 0 comments

We are hard-pressed, but not crushed

During the last days of Jesus’ life, two of his disciples were guilty of terrible offenses against him. As Jesus was being brought before the high priest for questioning, Peter denied knowing him three times, despite boasting to Jesus hours earlier that even if he had to die with him, he would never deny him. And Judas was even worse. He betrayed Jesus, selling him out to the Jewish religious leaders for thirty pieces of silver. Both men were utterly devastated when they came to terms with what they had done. Peter went back to fishing, the one thing he was still confident in. Judas, sadly, could not get over his guilt and hung himself....Keep Reading

Posted in: Suffering Tags: Jesus, Suffering, Suicide

March 15, 2022 by Eric Stillman 0 comments

Where is God in my mess?

Life is hard, and we can not always figure out what God is up to, or what good He could possibly bring through the difficult situations in which we often find ourselves. One of the surest anchors for our soul when we feel unmoored is to look to the cross. From an earthly perspective, God never seemed more absent or unloving then He did on that day, as Jesus, His innocent Son, hung on that cross. The disciples were having the ground pulled out from under them as they watched the one to whom they had dedicated their life for the past three years dying on the cross, while God did nothing about it. They must have wondered what kind of Father would let His innocent Son die an unjust death like that without rising to His defense? God never seemed more absent or unloving than He did on that day....Keep Reading

Posted in: Suffering Tags: Suffering, hope, Cross

March 8, 2022 by Amy Swanson 0 comments

Guest blogger: Amy Swanson

Going into this season of Lent, I admit to being unsure on how, or if, I would even participate. That changed one morning, as I opened my Bible to the reading plan I'm in. This day’s reading landed on Deuteronomy 9 and brought with it some unexpected conviction....Keep Reading

Posted in: Discipleship Tags: Discipleship, Fasting

February 22, 2022 by Eric Stillman 0 comments

The heart of fasting

Next Wednesday, March 2nd, is the beginning of Lent, the season of the church calendar that culminates in Easter. As we fix our eyes on Jesus, who for the joy set before Him endured the journey to the cross, willing to sacrifice everything in order to save us, we are called to follow His example in our own single-minded obedience to God. One powerful discipline that God gives us to seek Him in this fashion is fasting. As a church, we will be setting aside 21 days, from March 6th-27th, to fast and seek God for the revival of the church and the salvation of the lost....Keep Reading

Posted in: Discipleship Tags: Lent, Fasting

February 15, 2022 by Eric Stillman 0 comments

Quick to listen, slow to speak

There are many times in which I find myself in a conversation where the other person has said something to me that I find hurtful or unfair. My natural response is to get defensive and want to argue back, to prove that the other person is wrong and that I am right. However, my natural response does not usually result in deeper understanding and a closer connection. Rather, it usually ends up in raised voices, hurt feelings, and emotional distance. Can anyone relate? Isn’t there a better way? ...Keep Reading

Posted in: Relatonships Tags: Relationships, communication

February 8, 2022 by Eric Stillman 0 comments

Are you confused? Or just afraid to obey?

What price would you be willing to pay to experience more of the love, joy, peace, and fullness of God in your life? Honestly, that question frightens me. Even though I know in my head that God is good, that He is the pearl of great price that is worth selling everything for, I still have a great deal of fear when it comes to following Him. Specifically, I am afraid to give things up, afraid that it will not be worth the sacrifice. I think that many of us struggle with our faith, wondering where God is and what He wants of us. What if the answer is really simple, but our issue is not really a lack of understanding but rather a lack of willingness to do what He wants us to do?...Keep Reading

Posted in: Discipleship Tags: Discipleship, Fear

February 1, 2022 by Eric Stillman 0 comments

Watch out for humble disobdience

In Exodus 4, God approaches Moses with what must have felt like a death sentence: go to Pharaoh, the most powerful man in the world, and tell him to let his Israelite slaves go free. Understandably, Moses is more than reluctant to take on the task; indeed, he seems to give every excuse in the book why he’s the wrong man for the job. But even after God assures Moses that he will give him the words to speak AND miraculous signs and wonders to display, Moses still asks God to pick someone else. And so, God angrily tells Moses that Aaron will be his mouthpiece. There’s a fine line between humility and disobedience...Keep Reading

Posted in: Discipleship Tags: humility, Insecurity, Moses

January 25, 2022 by Eric Stillman 0 comments

God intends it for good

It is undoubtedly an imprecise endeavor to try to understand things from God’s perspective, but the story of Joseph in the book of Genesis seems to invite us to try to do precisely that. In fact, when Joseph finally reveals his identity to the brothers who sold him into slavery, he tells them that while they may have been trying to harm him (as were others along his life’s journey), God was behind the scenes working all things together for good, in order to save the lives of Joseph’s family and preserve the lineage that would eventually culminate in the Messiah....Keep Reading

Posted in: Discipleship Tags: Suffering, Character, Joseph