Run Your Race!

Posted by Dr. Drew Shofner on

There are two approaches to a spiritual life; passive or active. Most of us take a passive approach to our spiritual journey and we just kind of assume that it will happen. Can I just say how crazy that is! What “just happens” that is good in your life all on its own? How good does...

To truly love my child as God loves is to love God's child.

my love for my child

If any of you have ever loved your children, how dare you not love God's? That means you, as God's child, and it means everyone around you!

Some of you look at yourself and you hate what you see- don't hate God! You are the masterpiece of God and He loves you! 

Psalm 139:14 says, "I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." What David is saying here is: 'I know you made me in love!'

God created you on purpose, in love, and Jeremiah 31:3 says' "I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love. With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself." It reaches from before time was created and it reaches after time has ended. You were created on purpose by the love of God! You are not an accident, God does not create junk. You look how God wanted you to look. 

You are the art of God!

God didn't just create the Heavens and the Earth, the stars and the sun, the Rockies and the Andes and the beach for those of you who are beach people. The masterpiece of God, the crowning work in all creation, was you!

I'm learning in my own life as I learn to love my child, that to truly love my child as God loves- is to love God's child. Every one of God's children! 

So the truth is, my love for my child is just a window into how I should be loving every human being on earth -because they're God's child too! -Dr. Drew Shofner

Posted by Dr. Drew Shofner with

Experiencing Joy at a Joy Luncheon

Aptly named, our seniors’ Joy Luncheon at Severn Run is truly a joy to be part of.

Primarily geared toward seniors, Severn Run’s monthly Joy Luncheon provides an excellent way for members of the congregation to get together, share experiences, and have a good time while enjoying a potluck meal. (Trust me, there’s always plenty of food.)

My own experiences (in June and August) were memorable. For those of you who may be more skittish or shy, let me put your hearts at ease. Everyone was friendly and welcoming to newcomers. Some approached me and my wife, Eileen, eagerly engaging us in conversation.

Two different people recognized Eileen’s Scottish accent and immediately introduced us to Marie, who has a lovely Irish brogue. War did not break out between the two. Far from it.

Hank and Jessie have been attending Severn Run since 1971. Like many who come, Hank had stories to tell of the origins and growth of this fellowship.

Hank gave an interesting presentation on Flag Day. His wife, Jessie, creates lovely table settings each month and her June setting perfectly fit his theme.

Shirley and Ed have lived in this area for decades. Ed remembers when the Baltimore and Washington beltways were being built. 

Gwen Hubbard organizes each event and acts as emcee. She offers opening and closing prayers, greets newcomers, and gives announcements. Other church staff assist and attend, often with members of their family. It is a delight to see multiple generations share themselves and their experiences with one another.

Young Joe’s ever-smiling face was the very first one I saw when I arrived in June. He assisted in setting up each luncheon and was attentive to everyone’s needs. As it turns out, Joe participated in missions overseas and is now heading off to Hawaii to train other missionaries for overseas missions.

The staff strives to improve upon this successful activity. Suggestions for future luncheons include having a variety of themes, guest speakers, devotions, games, or topics of interest to seniors and adults. (Please provide your suggestions to Gwen.) 

If you’ve never experienced this wonderful way of connecting with other Severn Run members, you have something to look forward to. Never dull, always friendly, ever positive – the Joy Luncheon lives up to its name. 


You are invited to lunch at the Joy Luncheon (usually the second Monday of each month) Feel free to call the church office at (410) 551-6654 for more information.

How Do I Get Connected?

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You may have heard us say (once or twice) that we believe Life is Better Connected.
 
But the first question people have about getting connected is usually, "Why should I be connected?”
 
Joining a Connect Group is more than joining a Bible study; it is your opportunity to move from hearing to doing. Our Connect Groups are committed to doing life together focused around God’s word. You get a chance to live out God’s word by being in authentic relationship with others and with God through Christ while going out into our community to love and serve people well. 
 
The next question is people ask about being connected is, “How do I get connected?”
 
 
There are several ways you can get connected at Severn Run.
 
  1. On a typical Sunday morning you may have noticed people wearing blue t-shirts that say “Life is Better Connected” or pins that say “Ask Me About Connect Groups". Those are our Connect Group Leaders; they are passionate about doing life together and will be able to help you get connected into our community.
  2. You can also check out the Connect Corner in the atrium. There you will find all of the information you need about our Connect Groups and how to join as well as meet some of our leaders who will be able to determine which groups would be best for you.
  3. Last, but not least, you can go to Severnrun.com/connectgroups where you will also find all of our Connect Group information and Upcoming events. 
We are committed to walking with you in your walk with Christ so you are prepared to walk other people into a loving relationship with Christ.
 
We are excited for you to get connected!

You cannot see, without faith, all the possibilities of God!

you cannot see without faith

Just as your physical eye cannot see all the spectrums of light, you cannot see, without faith, all the possibilities of God! So why settle just for what you can see? Why not live for so much more? 

 
The mystery is that there is more to life than what we can see. There are more spectrums to life than the visible eye can see. I still find that hard to believe, I know that it is true, but what it speaks to, is a reality behind what I can see and even what I feel! It really doesn't matter if I feel like ultraviolet light is real or not, it is! 

In the same way, God is here today, though you may not be able to see Him, He is speaking to you in parables to show you a kingdom you cannot see that must become more real to you than a world you can see. For some of you, to personalize this, in your own life all you can see is that you're stuck. The feeling may be that my life will never be more than this. Well, that may be what you can see but it is not what God sees!

In Matthew 16:25, Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it. What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?"
 
So Jesus is saying 'if you want to save your life, you lose it. Because only by losing your life, for me, will you ever find your created purpose! Will you ever find what you're longing for...will you ever be who you were made to be...will you ever love like you are longing to love and be loved! Only in me will you find that and to find me you have to give up this!' (Paraphrased)

The truth is, we'd have to be blind not to see the worth of heaven over the world around us! The broken world. A 9-11 world. A world of so much injustice. A world of holocaust. A world of racism. A world of people using one another. A world of theft and lying. A world of using every advantage of power and beauty against other people to lift ourselves up! 

Can we not see how radically cancerous our world apart from God is?
 
If you and I want to make our home in this world, we're free to do that. Jesus offers more, but against that more, there is a power working to keep you stuck in your world. To keep you broken down and to keep you less than. To keep you unhappy, to keep you rooted in your pain, to keep you in every way oppressed and in jail (spiritually speaking). 
 
2 Corinthians 4:4 says, "The God of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers so they cannot see the light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ who is the image of God." There is a Kingdom that has come, but that Kingdom is opposed by a God of this age, Satan.

The kingdom of the world and the Kingdom of Heaven are two different economies and what has to be exchanged is the heart and the attachment. 

And so, God wants to give you a Kingdom worth more than the world but there is a worth decision that has to be made. Some of you think that you are worthless, and the truth is there could be no greater lie! God says you're worth more than His own life and so He sacrifices Himself upon the cross, is buried, and on the third day rises again because love will not die! 
 
You are of infinite worth to the Father! You don't have to live your life angry. You don't have to live your life lusting. You don't have to live your life using drugs or people. You don't have to live your life searching for recognition and respect at work because none of that will last forever! 

And so "The Kingdom of Heaven is like a treasure hidden in a field...(Matthew 13:44)" Not everyone is going to see it, and some who do see it will say, "That's not worth much and certainty not worth me giving up everything that I want and everything I've been living for up to this point. No thanks God, that really isn't my treasure, my treasure is elsewhere." And many will see the offer of this Kingdom as something that is just not real. 
 
Some other people will hear this message of Jesus and part of them will say yes to it, but part of them will say "I want the world as well. I want the car but I don't want to give up anything of value to pay for it." And that doesn't work, but I just want to share with you this one simple thing above all else, and that is that the Kingdom only comes to those who let the world go! Why settle, in your life, for just what you can see when the God of parables is seeing so much more and trying to show you so much more? -Dr. Drew Shofner

Rooted and built up in Him

Rooted in him

The Word of God says that when Jesus comes into our lives, it's not us creating life and energy, it's just the power of Heaven that comes into a yielded, surrendered life that begins to transform and change everything!

Colossians 2:6-7 says, "So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness."

There's the open door, and when we receive Christ Jesus as Lord, then we will continue to live in Him and grow in Him. Into lives that are ever larger for Him! That means that our lives grow deeper and our identity is rooted more and more firmly in the love of God -we know who we are!

Your identity is set, your confidence in God grows and then you begin to grow up like a tree that spreads its branches.

In the Kingdom of Heaven, you're free to serve your life away without anybody ever knowing your name! In the kingdom of the world, you gotta have your name in the spotlight, but in the Kingdom of Heaven, when Christ takes root and begins to work through all of your life, you grow down deep into the soil of God's love. 

Your life was designed by God to have an eternal impact in this world! Your creativity, your imagination, your talents, your gifts and abilities are supposed to come into play as part of the expanding kingdom of God --that's the way God designed it!

The plan of God is to fill you to the full measure of Christ Himself. As mush as Jesus was full of God on earth, that is the very plan of God for you according to Ephesians 4:11-13. When we let the Kingdom come, Jesus leads us into a God-sized life! -Dr. Drew Shofner

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