Offerings 6: “Father to the Fatherless”is Coming – 2/17/17!

Daniel sings his original song, Souls and Faces, at Offerings 5 (lyrics below)
Hey TD!
V4V is well underway, and the theme ringing in my mind has been a quote from David Platt: “We care for orphans not because we are rescuers, but because we are the rescued.” Our souls were orphaned – helpless, malnourished, infected, abused, and without family. We were unable to offer anything to God but our burdens. But, God sacrificed His own Son to declare us as valuable and loved, and Himself as our Heavenly Father! This is why our lives hold value, and why these orphans with disabilities are valuable beyond measure: because God’s love for them is beyond measure. And we show this with the same love that our own adoptive Father showed us: sacrificial love to those who can offer nothing.
In this spirit, let’s come with hearts that offer nothing but love and gratitude, as we prepare and gather as a family to honor our Heavenly Father at our sixth Offerings Night: Father to the Fatherless, on February 17th.
Whether through music, literature, dance, or art; math, science, current events or history – come and simply share something that has struck you in a new, meaningful way about what it means to be adopted by God… and perhaps, how your own adoption has transformed you in the process.  – Rebecca
Souls and Faces by Daniel Hsieh
The ocean sings some honest songs at night. I cry with it about the fright of loneliness, ‘cause all around, throughout the day, we’re all hiding in our faces; but your pretty eyes – they give it all away.

The masks that we construct are so amusing. It’s like we all believe the guy who says this world’s a stage. But, I know we don’t want “amused” written on our graves. There’s a soul somewhere inside your painted cage. Come out of there. Give your soul some air and sky. I see an image of our Maker in your eyes. Don’t shy away; don’t take the anesthetic. Together we can long and cry for the Sun to rise.

Don’t hide behind the masks of a religion. Don’t hide behind the names that are just printed on our clothes. No image in some pixel-screen can ever do you justice. You’re not just physical; you’re an everlasting soul. Come out of there. Give your soul some air and sky. I see an image of our Maker in your eyes. Don’t shy away; don’t take the anesthetic. Together we can long and cry for the Sun to rise.

I know it’s hard to be away from Home. But – look at us – at least we’re not alone. Our deaths are catching up to us each day. So there’s no time for pretense or the games we play. Come out of there. Give your soul some air and sky. I see an image of our Maker in your eyes. Don’t shy away; don’t take the anesthetic. Together we can long and cry for the Sun to rise

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All I Want For Christmas …

Show Hope

Hey TD,

If I had to choose a “verse of the year” for me, it’s a no-brainer.  Hands down it’s James 1:27:

“Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”

This Christmas season has been a daily deluge of that for me and my family as we work through the extremely extensive adoption process.  Being buried in paperwork can sometimes obscure the vision of what it is we’re trying to do.

Perhaps that’s why I found myself tearing up in my car when I listened to “All I Want For Christmas” by 5-time Grammy Award winner, Steven Curtis Chapman, a couple of weeks ago.  It was a great reminder of why God gave His church the James 1:27 command and who it is we are to be helping in His Name.

I hope you’ll listen to the lyrics and begin praying for the orphaned children with special needs in China that we’ll be seeking to help during the upcoming Voiceless for the Voiceless (V4V) campaign that TD will be engaging in, in the near future.  Enjoy! – Arthur

 

TD Fri. – Offerings 5 – “SEE”!!!!!

[Kylie and crew doing body worship at Offerings 4 ot Psalm 139 (Wonderfully Made)]

Hey TD!

Have you ever read or passed by something a million times, when suddenly – you actually SEE it for the first time?  This is the experience of every child who has been adopted into the family of God and been given the Spirit of God – for “What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand [or SEE] what God has freely given us.” (1Cor 2:12)

This Friday’s Offerings 5 is an opportunity for us to spend time as a family – to love on, delight in, celebrate and worship with our Heavenly Father – by expressing and exploring the various capabilities He has given us to create and reflect who He is.  Whether in the form of a simple letter, a poem, a painting, a song, a dance, a recitation, or a reflection – we can share with each other what God has been teaching us to SEE, as we learn to SEE more truly ourselves, each other, and HIM.

If you are interested in bringing a smile to your Father’s face 🙂 and giving an offering – even if you don’t know what it is yet – please contact your small group leader TODAY!

“Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known.  But we know that when [Jesus] appears, we shall be like Him, for we shall SEE Him as He is.” 1 John 3:2

Thanks! – Rebecca

Here’s TD’s schedule for the rest of the month:

9/16 – Offerings 5

Come participate and enjoy our 5th Offerings Night with art, poetry, music, and more as we choose to SEE God as He is!

9/24 (Sat.) – ReThink Apologetics Student Conference (Costa Mesa)

It’s our annual trip to Stand to Reason’s student conference, designed to help you think through issues clearly and biblically, and to help you learn how to articulate those thoughts to your friends.  As STR’s motto says, this is clear thinking Christianity.

Cost: $20 (it costs $45, but we will cover $25 if you sign up by 9/18) – sign up with a TD leader today!

Offerings 4 Tonight! (see Ash, Kat, Jen in Offerings 3)

Hey TD!

“Offerings” is always a blessing.  Don’t miss out on Offerings 4 tonight!  It’s going to be a great time!

To whet your appetite, here’s a collaboration by Ashley, Katherine, and Jennifer for Offerings 3 last August, called We Are Alive, with Katherine and Jennifer singing an original song and Ashley drawing  an amazing accompanying picture (click below!):

Ashley_082815

“We Are Alive” by Jennifer Li and Katherine Tao
Don’t fear now, He’s watching
Everything that’s said, He’s listening
And His seed has been sown in my soul
These roots are firm, unyielding
Bearing fruit to spread the healing power
Of the glory of our bounteous king
And now that we are saved our faith can
Grow strong in truth
With the promise of eternal life, joy
Flows ever through
By your love through Jesus Christ
The perfect sacrifice
You fill our hearts, we are alive
And now that I have found you
Your waters washed away my sin
And kept the branches of my tree alive
But even in the storms and trials of this life, these
Roots are strengthened in struggle and strife
This temporary pain will
Not bruise my spirit still
Your word will justify my life
And now that we are saved our faith can
Grow strong in truth
With the promise of eternal life, joy
Flows ever through
By your love through Jesus Christ
The perfect sacrifice
You fill our hearts, we are alive
Don’t fear now, He’s watching
Everything that’s said, He’s listening
And His seed has been sown in my soul
You’re Lord of all creation, the great I Am
You fill our hearts, we are alive (3x)

Offerings – “Believe” – Jenny/Dora/Mel

Hey TD!

Offerings 3 is almost here! It’s still not too late to sign up!  Just let your small group leader know what you’ll be offering.

Here’s another offering from Offerings 2 – Jenny’s original song, “Believe,” as shared by Jenny, Dora, and Mel!

Believe (lyrics)

By Jenny Liu

Verse 1:

Do I truly believe that Your love has no bounds?

Do I truly believe I was lost but now am found?

Do I truly believe that You’ve given me more than I need?

I believe, help my unbelief!

Verse 2:

Do I truly believe that Your Word is alive and real?

Do I truly believe Your promises, despite how I feel?

Do I truly believe that You are worthy of all I can give?

I believe, help me believe

Chorus:

That You’re my shelter in the storm

You’re the lover of my soul

You’re my true and faithful friend

You are God and You’re my Lord

You’re the reason that I sing

You’re the worthy King of kings

You are more than enough for me

This I believe

Verse 3:

I choose to truly believe that this world is not my home

Yes, I truly believe that this life is not my own

I choose to truly believe that I’m loved because of the Cross

I believe, yes I believe

Bridge:

I believe that what I believe is really real (x3)

Lord I believe you

Chorus 2:

That You’re my shelter in the storm

You’re the lover of my soul

You’re my true and faithful friend

You are God and You’re my Lord

You’re the pearl of greatest price 

Only You can satisfy 

You are more than enough for me

I believe

I Can Only Imagine …

I am wiping tears from my eyes right now.  I just watched a blind boy sing to Jesus, “I can only imagine what my eyes will see when Your face is before me …”  Those lyrics hit me in a new way this time around … and humbled me.  The blind boy, Christopher Duffley, also was born a “premie,” was given up to foster care, then was adopted by his aunt.    Christopher also happens to have autism.  This is an incredible piece of worship.

In preparation for Easter and in celebration of Autism Awareness Month, may you be inspired to fight through your own “spiritual autism,” get over yourself, and fight to know, honor, and worship Him with all you have. – Arthur

What Will You Give Jesus? Day 8

If you haven’t stopped to listen to Day 7’s John Piper poem, you NEED to. It’s phenomenal.

Today’s gift to Jesus is “Manger Throne,” a song that Nathaniel wrote for Jesus last Christmas.  Hope you like it.  Fyi, we’ll be singing his new Christmas song, “One of Us,” during this year’s Christmas Eve service 🙂 – Arthur

Manger Throne
by Nathaniel Hsieh
VERSE 1:
Journey on to Bethlehem
Though long the road may seem
Join with Mary’s wondering heart
“My Lord, how can this be?”
Come to the manger throne
Come worship Him alone
CHORUS:
As we sing Glory to God on high
For changing our world that holy night
For calling us into hope and life
Oh light divine, come shine on us
VERSE 2:
Journey with the wise men far
The star their only guide
Dream of peace for all mankind
A peace that will abide
Come to the manger throne
Come worship Him alone
VERSE 3:
Journey as the angels cry
“News, Good News, we bring”
Join as shepherds stand in awe
Then run to meet their king
Come to the manger throne
Come worship Him alone