WS Update: Adoption

June 6, 2022

In a recent article titled “How I Knew I Needed to Quit Instagram”, the author reflected on the way her use of instagram negatively affected her life, writing:

When a post did well, or I got a bunch of followers, I felt great for a minute, but just as quickly I felt pressure to do it again. If something was negatively received, or I lost people, I was consumed by anxiety and felt compelled to “fix” it. matter what I did, there would never be enough followers, enough approval, enough success. The more I posted, the less I felt like my true self.

Social media is just the latest means by which damage is done to our well being through the inevitable need to compare ourselves with others.  As Henry Nouwen writes, our world is so full of grades, scores, and statistics we, consciously or unconsciously, are always measuring ourselves against others, which is both useless and “ a terrible waste of time and energy”. As mentioned in yesterday’s sermon, freedom from this trap comes from the fact of a Christian’s adoption into God’s family in which we can cry “Abba Father” (a sign of intimacy and affection in the present) and our also ‘heirs’ (an assurance that our future is secure).  

The challenge is to take those facts and work them into our feelings, that is, to allow the Holy Spirit to make the objective reality of our adoption a subjective reality or our experience.  How?  As you begin another week, 

  1. Take stock of your feelings of inferiority, shame, and self-righteousness and probe how those feelings flow from the fact that you are living like an orphan who is abandoned instead of a child who is loved. Then 
  2. Take time to meditate on the fact of God’s love for you in Jesus by reading Romans 8:14-17, asking the Spirit to impress upon your heart the feeling of God’s love, hearing the words spoken to you: “This is my beloved son/daughter in whom I am well pleased.”

The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.Romans 8:16

Thank you for your generosity

As you give, you’re helping meet the growing needs of our Upper West Side neighbors and equipping our community to fulfill our calling to serve our city.

Coming up

  • New at RWS, June 12: If you’re new to Redeemer West Side, we welcome you to come learn more about our church and get connected to the community.
  • Tangled in Color: Art Exhibit, June 17: “Tangled in Color” features works by ArTech Collective artists, this collection of drawings, embroidery and weavings will awaken your senses, evoke emotion, and help you escape the everyday. Through the artistic practice and the created pieces, the artists hope to share a fragment of their creative world as they tangle you up in this colorful journey.
  • APEST Spiritual Gifts Seminar, June 28: APEST is a spiritual gift framework from Ephesians 4. Paul says Jesus has given apostles, prophets, evangelists, shepherds, and teachers—hence the acronym APEST. After registering, you’ll be given instructions on how to take the brief online assessment.
  • Vacation Bible School, July 11: Have an exciting weeklong event consisting of worship, skits, crafts, music and Bible lessons in a camp-like atmosphere, all of which will help kids discover and celebrate God’s greatness! Registration ends on June 15.
  • Write encouraging cards for families: Safe Families for Children need volunteers to write encouraging messages on 10 cards. Volunteers can purchase the cards or work with SFCC to purchase. All written cards must be mailed to SFCC before Monday, June 20. This is the perfect activity for small groups!
  • Teach virtual ESL classes: Empower immigrants with The Open Door! There are three opportunities for volunteers to teach virtually on Zoom. Bilingual Spanish speakers preferred, plus a commitment to teaching once a week for one hour.