Last weekend White Oak launched into a brand-new season of ministry. We are asking God to do what only he can do in us and through us for bold moves of ministry impact. In Acts chapters 3-4 we see several examples of individuals taking bold steps of trust.
The lame man who is healed as he stands and walks (jumps, actually).
Peter and John as they testify boldly of Jesus’s resurrection.
The believers gather together praying and asking God to do powerful things in and through them through the name of Jesus.
That is what our SHAKEN initiative is all about. We have two goals in this season. One, that 100% of our White Oak family would engage in the weekly sermon series, be involved in a life group study provided in the Shaken Guide, and that each of us would ask the Holy Spirit to shake up our lives for bold movements of faith.
30 Stretch out your hand with healing power; may miraculous signs and wonders be done through the name of your holy servant Jesus.”
31 After this prayer, the meeting place shook, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit. Then they preached the word of God with boldness. -Acts 4:30-31
Our secondary goal for Shaken is that we would trust God to do his work through our generosity. White Oak has always been a generous church. You can see evidence of that by looking at the Kingdom-advancing impact in our city and around the world. God has been so faithful! He has been changing and saving lives in through the name of Jesus at and through White Oak for nearly two centuries! I am humbled and often in disbelief that God chooses to use us and empowers us to do these things. I am convinced that he is not done moving in us to continue his work.
I was speaking with one White Oak family in the lobby of our Ross Campus just a couple weeks ago. This man was expressing how deeply honored he and his wife are to be part of this Shaken season. Before they came to White Oak, he said, he never viewed his financial resources in any way other than for it to be primarily used on himself. His entire outlook has changed since he met Jesus! This White Oak family has been transformed and they tell me that they’re ready for the challenge of Shaken and they’re ready to be stretched in their generosity and faith!
There are stories just like this throughout our church family. And recently, I’ve been reminded what it’s all about. My niece was just baptized a few weeks ago into the name of our Heavenly Father, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit. One of my son’s good friends will be baptized in the coming weeks. Dozens from our White Oak family moved out into our communities last Saturday serving at schools, shelters, senior centers, and helping neighbors in need. There are nearly 40 life groups meeting as men, women, and teens come together in community, studying God’s Word, and asking how we might be shaken by the Holy Spirit toward deeper steps of trust. We are connecting people to full life in Jesus!
My wife, Denise, and I are praying for three things in this season:
We are praying that God would shake in our hearts. We have our Shaken commitment card on our refrigerator. It’s a constant reminder that our God is a good provider. We are asking him to show us how he wants us to step out in generosity with Him as our #1 priority.
We are praying for our White Oak to be shaken to do the same. Together we can move in bold steps of trust. That we’ll all ask God to do such big things that everyone will know it’s by his power!
We pray that anyone who desires to lead out first will come to our Advance Commitment Night at the Cincinnati Museum Center on Friday, November 11. This will be a great night enjoying the museums, worshiping together, and stepping out boldly! I don’t want you to miss this night. Register by clicking here.
The God who showed up in the book of Acts is the same God we worship and trust today. I don’t think he’s done shaking up his people and his Church to move us forward in bold steps of impact. Let’s ask him to do that again!
Anticipating bold movements of God,
White Oak Christian Church