Downtown Cornerstone Blog
Aug 22
2018

An Invite to Our 8th Annual Summer BBQ

Baptism, Event, News | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

This coming Saturday, August 25th, DCC will be hosting its eighth Summer BBQ & Baptism at Myrtle Edwards Park, from 11am-2pm, on the Seattle waterfront. We invite you to join us. 

This is a unique annual event in the life of our church where the entire church gathers to enjoy God’s common grace in a summer barbecue and God’s saving grace in baptism. 

This is a great opportunity to: 

• Connect outside of our Sunday gathering rhythm
• Make new friends and reconnect with old ones
• Invite family, neighbors, and coworkers to hear the gospel
• Use your culinary skills, or simple generosity, to bring something to share
• Steward your grilling techniques that you’ve been mastering all summer
• Revel in the ongoing saving grace of Jesus at work among us

In the past, we’ve held these barbecues on a weeknight. We’re not opposed to that. However, we discovered that with work, traffic, parking, family schedules, high tides, and racing sunsets it could help to shift this event to a weekend. 

That said, this is the first year that we’ve held this event on a Saturday afternoon. Therefore, we hope even more of you will be able to join in the celebration. We encourage you to make a long afternoon of it. Bring your lawn chair or blanket—and maybe one to share. Break out your favorite lawn game. Dust off your frisbees. Come prepared to enjoy God’s creation and God’s people. 

Parents, we’ll also have plenty of activities for the kids, including bouncy houses, face painting, giant bubbles, and more. 

“What is the schedule?” 

11:00am Mingling 
12:00pm BBQ lunch
1:00pm Baptisms 
2:00pm Mingling

“What can I bring?” DCC will provide the staples but, if you are able, we invite you to bring a dish to share. You can sign-up to bring something here

“How can I help?” As you can imagine, an event like this requires all-hand-on-deck, from greeting to grilling, from set-up and tear-down. You can sign-up to help here

See you all on Saturday, Lord willing!

Christ is all,
Pastor Adam

P.S. Go here to get a sense of what last year’s BBQ & Baptism was like. 

May 17
2018

Why “Serve the City”?

Event, Serve the City, Service | by Justin Keogh

In just a few weeks, on Saturday, June 2nd from 9a-1p, we’ll gather at Bailey Gatzert Elementary School as a body to serve and bless the Seattle Public Schools (SPS) through our 6th annual Serve the City event. Over the years, we’ve set aside a summer Saturday morning in order to serve together as a family on mission. As we’ve continued to grow so has our impact through this event – and as of the last few years, we’re one of the largest groups that SPS has worked with! Of course, our motivation is not to be the largest group, but to serve with the joy of the Lord as our strength (and thereby do as much good as we can). As we gear up for serving together on June 2nd, I wanted to remind us of some great truths in our service to our neighbors:

We have been loved and served beyond measure in Christ

Our fundamental starting point is the good news of the gospel, which is that when we were dead in our sins Christ came to rescue us through his death and resurrection and restore us to right relationship to God (Rom 5:8). And from this restored relationship overflows a love that is expressed in all areas of our life – how we spend our time, money, and effort; how we work and play; how we relate to one another and to our neighbors. We live with Christ as our model, who came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many (Matt 20:28).

We serve by God’s strength and for His glory

Throughout Scripture, God speaks of his redeeming work to create a people for his own possession, that we would be set apart, living for His Glory. Ephesians 2:10 says it this way: “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” God has redeemed us and set before us good works that we might display something of His love and glory to the world around us. Jesus says that we are to be light in the world, “so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven” (Matt 5:16).

We serve our city out of love as an implication of the gospel

In being loved by God through Jesus, we are moved by the love we’ve received to love others, within the church and outside of the church. Paul writes to the Thessalonians that they are to “always seek after that which is good for one another and for all people,” (1 Thes 5:15). We seek to both declare and demonstrate the good news of Jesus across Seattle, through our faithful proclamation and service.

With this in mind, let’s serve with a humble and joyful posture of heart, working heartily unto the Lord. More details, directions, and registration can be found here. Please register to let us know you’re coming and so we can plan accordingly. Bring your communities and friends!

For the glory of our King and the good of many,
Justin Keogh

Jan 10
2018

A Note from Jani Ortlund, 2018 Women’s Retreat Speaker

Event, Teaching, Women's Retreat

Dear Ladies of Downtown Cornerstone Church,

I’m looking forward to our time together in February at the Women’s Retreat! Why? Because I love to be a part of women gathering together with open hearts and open Bibles, freed from the demands of daily duties to eagerly seek the Lord. I have the sacred privilege to lead us in those times in God’s Word.

Who is this woman leading you? Well, I’m Jani (rhymes with Annie) Ortlund, married for 46 years to A29 church planter Ray Ortlund. We have four married children, producing the most irresistible granddarlings—13 at last count! I spend my days much like you do, trying to figure out why God made me and how best to serve Him this side of Heaven. Part of that service involves speaking and writing about Him!

The theme for our weekend together is delighting in Christ. What does it mean to be “in Christ”? How do we come to rest there—to stay there? What is God’s part and what is our part as we muddle through our hopes and heartaches? How can our identity in Christ expand from one of duty to delight? And what can we trust Christ for in those inevitable dry and barren desert experiences?

How can you prepare for this time together? Please pray. Ask God to meet with us individually and corporately in fresh and significant ways. Pray that you will see Jesus, not Jani.

Meditate on Psalm 62:1 and Psalm 36:7-9, and read through Isaiah 41:17-21—our three texts for the weekend.

Oh, and definitely pack some chocolate! I strongly believe that chocolate makes for a better weekend!

Prayerfully, expectantly, and lovingly,

– Jani Ortlund

===

Ladies, this retreat is a unique opportunity to hit “pause” on our daily rhythms and gather together to be encouraged, equipped, and strengthened in our faith. We know there’s a lot to coordinate – from carpooling and childcare, to saving up for the cost, and giving up the bulk of your weekend. We encourage you to give your concerns for the weekend to Jesus, embrace all that He has waiting for you, and join us in the following:

1) Begin praying for the weekend.

2) Register online in advance!

3) Invite a friend and encourage ladies to join you.

4) Email events@downtowncornerstone.org if you have any questions, concerns, or barriers.

A reminder that we’re offering a 50% discount to all students. Use the code collegestudent (lowercase, all one word) on your registration form before submitting.

Excited for all that God will do!

Oct 19
2017

Reflections from Man Camp

Discipleship, Event

Earlier this month, 130 men within DCC set aside a weekend to reset their affections on Christ and grow in fellowship together at Island Lake Camp in Poulsbo, WA. Jesus was made much of, prayers were answered, and men left encouraged and renewed! Here’s just one of the many stories from the weekend.

As we settled into our seats and pulled out our bibles, the fatigue of the day became apparent. Men quietly greeted each other as the smell of coffee filled the room. After a busy week, the thought of lessons and activities was as daunting as it was exciting. For me, the week leading up to Man Camp had been particularly taxing. I felt tired, stretched thin, and distant from God. 

As the first session began and we dove into God’s word, a simple but powerful theme began to take center stage: Endurance.

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before uslooking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God..” – Hebrews 12:1-2. 

Man Camp itself was divided into four sessions, breaking down Hebrews 12:1-3. The first session discussed what endurance is and why we need it. We reflected on the “great cloud of witnesses”- ordinary men who trusted deeply in God – and how their trust and dependence on God offers us strength, encouragement, and a new perspective to trust God in difficult circumstances. Session two highlighted the weight and sin that clings so closely to our souls, why it clings so closely, and how we can, by God’s grace, start to lay it aside. In the third session, we learned what it takes to run the race with endurance and how we can tell if we are running the race well. Finally, in the last session, we evaluated what our hearts are truly pursing, remembering the Lord and his sacrifice for us, and refocusing our hearts, minds, and souls on who Jesus is, what He has done for us, and how He is worthy of the central affections of our hearts. 

Looking back, I can clearly see that the Lord was beginning to reveal a gospel disconnect in my life. While I didn’t realize it at the time, I had started to place my trust, joy, and satisfaction in my doings rather than in my Savior. This subtle change happened over a series of months and had left me feeling spiritually dry, focused on my sin and failures, and overall a bit weary in pursuing God. 

It was during the last session that I was reminded of the encouragement from the author of Hebrews to set my attention on Jesus as my deepest joy and greatest treasure. I had spent so much of my energy trying to fix my mistakes and shortcomings and subtly win God’s approval that I had forgotten who my Jesus is. He is the one who is appointed as the heir of all things and it is through Him that all things were created in this world (Heb 1:2). He is the radiance of the glory of God, the exact imprint of His nature. He is the one who upholds the universe by the word of His power. He is the one who made purification for our sins. (Heb 1:3) It is Him who everything is subject to, and nothing is outside of His control. (Heb 2:8) It is Him who is founder of our salvation. (Heb 2:10) It is Him who is our great high priest who has passed through the heavens. (Heb 4:14) He is our sure and steadfast anchor of our souls. (Heb 6:19) He is perfect forever. (Heb. 7:28) It is Him who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in heaven, a minister in the holy places. (Heb. 8:1-2) and it is Him who deeply loves me and draws me near with his grace and mercy.

It is only by looking towards Jesus that we can run this race. It starts with Him, it continues with Him, and it will end with Him. It is not done by pulling up our boot straps and simply manning up. It is done only through His grace and His strength. We add nothing, we only faithfully pursue Him. 

I know that in this day and age, it can be hard to take a step away from all the priorities we have for a weekend getaway. I know that events like this can seem a burden, but that is far from the truth. We all need time to get away and truly reflect and recalibrate our hearts on our gracious God. I have consistently seen the Lord move in mine and others lives during this time, and I am confident He will continue this good work in the years to come. 

Love you all,

Kyle Stewart, DCC Member

Sep 22
2017

A Pastoral Invite to Man Camp 2017

Discipleship, Event | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

DCC Men, 

On October 6th the men of DCC will be heading to the Olympic Peninsula for 24 hours of Gospel-saturated learning, personal sharpening, and relationship-building for Man Camp 2017. This year our theme is Endurance taken from Hebrews 12:1-3. We’re considering, “What does it take to persevere as a follower of Jesus?” We’ll look at ways to avoid wasting our lives, how to set aside sin, ingredients for running well, and more. Plus, we’ll be in the woods. 

Yes, last year, some of us were on a ferry with a car fire. Yes, last year, it rained the entire weekend. Yes, last year, the power was out and we ran the retreat on a generator. Yes, last year, there was no heat or hot showers. And it was perfect: the men of DCC were gathered, the Scriptures were taught, new friendships were forged, songs were sung, and some responded to Jesus for the first time. While the circumstances of every year change, the benefit of this time together doesn’t change. 

So, I am making a pastoral call to all DCC men who have yet to register. Our prayerful aim is to see 175 men in the woods in two weeks. Let’s say that DCC averages 650 people on Sunday and half are men. That makes roughly 325 men. Ideally, we’ll see every one of these men join us on the peninsula. But, if just half of you registered, we’d nearly be at our goal. My encouragement to you is simple: register. You will not regret it. We understand that not all of you can make it, for one reason or another, but this is for those of you that can. Let me offer the following encouragements for those of you on the fence:

#1 Man Camp creates intentional space to learn about Jesus.

Our culture is marked by busyness. Work demands. School demands. Kid demands. Project demands. Schedule demands. 24-hour news. Endless social media feeds. It takes intentionality to slow down for five minutes, let alone an entire day. That makes this Man Camp a gift. It is a gift to carve out intentional space in your calendar to consider how to endure with Jesus, alongside others seeking to do the same. This kind of intentionality is good for our souls. Don’t miss out.

#2 Man Camp builds new relationships.

Maybe you don’t know anyone. It can be intimidating entering into something like this without knowing anyone else. We all get that. But, here’s the thing: that’s what retreats are for! More relational-traction can be gained with a retreat than with a dozen brief Sunday meet-and-greets. A retreat is the perfect place to get to know others. No one is “busy.” We’re all there for the same purpose. So, will this require you to take a step of faith? Yes. Will you be alone? No. Will you forge new relationships with others? For sure. Will it be worth it? No doubt. Embrace this Man Camp as an opportunity to build new relationships.  

#3 Man Camp gets us out of our context. 

We all know what a gift it is to pause our normal rhythms for a change of scenery. Our family tries to get out of the city at least once a month. The process to get into the woods can be challenging, but once we’re there I always ask, “Why did I hesitate? This is amazing.” It is a gift to temporarily get out of our context to think, laugh, rest, and reflect—especially when it involves a ferry ride to the peninsula. Sometimes that’s what it takes to get the perspective we’ve been looking for. Man Camp is an opportunity to get out of your context for a weekend. 

#4 Man Camp is a weapon against Satan. 

For years as a new believer I noticed that all kinds of things came at me when I was presented with an opportunity to go on a retreat: family emergencies, other plans, lack of funds, sudden desire to be alone, skepticism about the benefit of retreats, etc. Often, I needed someone to come alongside me and say, “You really need to go to this and I’ll do whatever it takes to make that happen.” So, in most cases, I went. I can recall cases where I even regretted it while I was on my way there! But, guess what? Not once did I regret it afterwards. Not once. I’ve come to see that this is a common tactic of the enemy to keep us from opportunities like this that are sure to increase our faith, deepen our joy, and anchor our love in God—and all that he is for us, in Jesus. The enemy doesn’t want that. He wants us at home by ourselves watching Netflix. So, tell the enemy to take hike. Put aside doubts. Change plans. Take a step of faith. You won’t regret it. Men, this is going to be a memorable time together. 

All that said, here are the details: 

WHAT: Man Camp 2017
WHEN: Friday, Oct. 6th – Saturday, Oct. 7th
WHERE: Island Lake Camp
WHO: Men
QUESTIONS: events@downtowncornerstone.org

*GO HERE FOR DETAILS AND REGISTRATION*

Let’s be praying for our time together, fellas. 

Christ is all, 

Pastor Adam

Aug 21
2017

Beach, Burgers, and Baptisms this Thursday @ Myrtle Edwards!

Baptism, City Life, Event | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

“Behold, how good and pleasant it is when brothers [and sisters] dwell in unity!”
– Psalm 133:1

DCC family,

This Thursday, August 24th, we are gathering together at the beautiful Myrtle Edwards Park from 6:00-8:30pm for our annual summer barbecue and baptisms. We hope you can join us! Meat will be on the grill. The Olympics will be out. Music will be playing. Lord willing, the weather will hold. There will be activities for kids. You’ll make new friends. There will be a brief gospel message and we’ll be celebrating three baptisms! It’s going to be a great evening spent reveling in the beauty of our city, God’s glorious creation, and the reality of Jesus who continues to change lives. I don’t like hype, but you really don’t want to miss it. Come early. Adjust your work schedule. Carpool with others. If you don’t know anyone, this is a great opportunity to change that. Do what you can to join us for this special time. Since we gather across two gatherings on Sunday, we don’t have many opportunities to be together at the same time—this is one of them. We currently have 150 RSVP’ed. We’d love to see that doubled. We hope you can make it. If you have any questions, just let us know. See you Thursday evening!

WHEN.
Thursday, August 24, 6:00pm-8:30pm

WHERE.
Myrtle Edwards Park, 3130 Alaskan Way. We’ll gather in the field nearest to the beach (map below). Street parking is pay until 8 pm at $1.50/hr available along Western Ave, Elliott Ave, and Alaskan Way.

FOOD.
DCC will provide hot dogs and burgers, condiments, buns, chips, beverages, and paper products. If you’re planning on joining, please sign up for a side dish, burger topping, or dessert below.

You can RSVP, sign-up to bring a dish to share, and volunteer to serve here (we still need help!).

Christ is all, 
Pastor Adam

P.S. Be praying for those who will be sharing their testimonies and getting baptized. Specifically, ask Jesus to use their stories to draw others to a saving relationship with him.

Aug 3
2017

Video and Photos from Serve the City

City Life, Event, Serve the City, Service, Video | by Micah Rickard

“And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.” – John 17:3

Jesus begins his prayer for his disciples and all believers, recorded in John 17, with this brief and beautiful statement on what it means to be in Christ. Later in this prayer, Jesus prays, “The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me” (v. 22-23). The reality that we are in Christ brings a transformational unity with each other, and God uses this unity to display his glory to the world, that others may know him and have eternal life. Paul highlights this when he refers to believers as “ambassadors for Christ” (2 Corinthians 5:20).

It is out of these deep truths that we are committed to building a great city, not just a great church. It’s why our desire as a church is to see gospel renewal take place from the avenues to the alleyways. We have been infinitely served and loved by Christ, and out of the joy and gratitude that brings, we get to serve together as God’s people to display his glory in our city!

Last month, on July 15th, Downtown Cornerstone had the opportunity to partner with Gatewood Elementary School in West Seattle to help out with a variety of grounds work projects, including repainting US and World maps, repainting foursquare and tetherball courts, turning up ground and laying down mulch to outline a new track, removing massive amounts of ivy from fences, weeding along edges and fence lines, and more!

One woman and her family walked past the school, witnessed our efforts, and were moved to tears to see us “carrying out Jesus’ mission to serve others.” She mailed a thank you note sharing her appreciation saying, “Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for living the true Spirit of love and community. I will never forget your collective and individual kindness.” Her son will attend kindergarten at Gatewood Elementary this fall!

It’s stories like this that remind us we really are the hands and feet of Christ, sharing the love He’s given us with those in our community. With over 200 volunteers (plus kids!) serving a total of 800+ hours we accomplished an incredible amount of service and support for the students and staff at Gatewood! If the Department of Neighborhood approves the grant Gatewood’s Parent-Teacher Association submitted, they’ll receive an equal amount of paid hours toward additional improvements. What an incredible gift!

Thank you to all who came out to help! Share the video above and check out the full photo album from the day!

– Deacon Micah Rickard

 

Jun 22
2017

A Family on Mission | Serve the City

City Life, Event, Serve the City, Service | by Pastor Craig Sturm

“But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf; for in its welfare you will find your welfare.” – Jeremiah 29:7

Downtown Cornerstone,

We’re about three weeks away from our Serve the City event! If you haven’t already, I’d encourage you to register and invite two or three neighbors, friends, family, or co-workers to join in as well!  

If you’re new or haven’t been around for a while, you may be wondering, “Why are we serving the city in this way?”As a church, we want to proclaim the Gospel in word and demonstrate it in deed. Because of that, here are three reasons why we are serving the city this summer, and why you should consider joining us:

1. WE’VE BEEN SERVED AND LOVED

Romans 5:8 says that even while we were enemies of God, Christ died for us. As a church, we believe that we’ve been infinitely loved and served by God, through the person and work of Jesus. Because of that, we believe that the good news of the Gospel is not only shared in word, but demonstrated in deed. Serving is not just “giving back do-goodism”, but a tangible expression of the Gospel of Jesus Christ – serving as we’ve been served; loving as we’ve been loved, in Christ.

2. THERE’S A NEED

The Seattle School District has only 5 groundskeepers to maintain 34 schools in the South Seattle school district. This leaves many of the schools without adequate funding and manpower to maintain the properties. As such, these schools heavily rely on volunteer efforts to come alongside and help maintain their properties and facilities. We asked Seattle Schools where their greatest need is, and they told us Gatewood Elementary. We desire to be humble, responsive, loving, service partners with the school district.

3. WE’RE A FAMILY ON MISSION

Often when we think of the church, we think of it as a family, and it is (Eph 2:19, Gal 6:10), but more importantly, the church (us!) is God’s primary vehicle for the spread of the Gospel (Eph 3:8-11). We call that mission, or the “great commission” (Matt 28:18-20). God sent His son to seek and save the lost, and He sends us as His people, across the street and around the world – with the good news that Jesus offers forgiveness of sin and new life with Him, beginning now. The whole purpose of doing events like this is to not only love and serve the city, but create space to invite others to participate with us, and love and serve others as Christ has loved and served us.  

Practically…

1. Who can you reach out to this week and invite them to serve with you? 

Be praying now for good conversation, open doors, and that the Spirit of God would use something as simple as serving the city together to change the hearts and lives of our not-yet-believing friends for all eternity! 

2. How might you weave this into the rhythm of your community’s summer schedule?

It would be cool to see whole communities serving together, extending their connecting beyond just their regular meeting times. Talk with folks in your community about making this a summer priority!

That our joy in Jesus would be tangible to our city,

Pastor Craig

Here’s the video from a few years ago to help whet your appetite!

Screenshot 2014-07-15 10.21.00

May 11
2017

Reflections from the Women’s Retreat & a Save the Date for Next Year

Discipleship, Event, Women's Retreat | by Tiffany Butler

Save the Date for 2018

The next Women’s Retreat is scheduled for Friday, February 9 and Saturday, February 10, 2018 with keynote speaker Jani Ortlund. Mark your calendar and spread the word!

Treasuring the Cross

“The cross is a treasure to those in need of it.” Charissa Lundy set a great tone the opening night of the DCC Women’s retreat with that simple sentence. The gospel – that Jesus died because our sin is so great, but was joyful to do it because his love is greater (Heb. 12:2) – is indeed a treasure to those who know they need it.

The theme of the DCC Women’s Retreat was The Greatness of God. Often, we make our situations in life great, we make our fears great, we make our idols great, but God is greater than all of these. Jen Thorn, the keynote speaker, began her first session defining and explaining the greatness of God. In the battle to put to death our fear and idols, the roots come back to our theology – the study of the nature of God. As I understand the greatness of God and my position in Him, in Christ, my fears and idols are measured in their right perspective. I can then see clearly that I need the help of my Savior to put to death my fears and idols.

Leading up to the DCC Women’s Retreat, I was transitioning back to Seattle after living abroad for eight months. It was a bit of a rough transition, emotionally. During this time, the Lord further revealed idols I had set up in my life to navigate these fears and uncomfortable emotions. The weekend away helped me to process the ways in which I forget the greatness of God, and instead turn to fear and idols in my life. I was reminded through the testimonies, conversations, and gospel-saturated teachings that to rely on my own strength and my own idols will only lead to frustration and burn-out. The Lord wants more for us than that! Like a good Father, He will discipline us (sometimes in the form of just making life as we live it uncomfortable) in order to help us to grow into all that He has for us; He will prune us in order that we can bear more fruit (John 15:2).

Applying Truth & Learning to Wait

In talking with other ladies in the final hours of the retreat, we reflected on the evidences of grace poured out during our time there. Tears were shed, fears were identified and addressed, grace applied, and in some cases, doubts still remain. We are returning from the spiritual and physical mountaintop of Cle Elum to our daily lives. How will we continue to apply gospel truths every day to our joys and struggles, as well as to our relationships via friendships, families, coworkers and neighbors?

Personally, one of the biggest takeaways for me is to apply God’s truths to my idols; to take time in my day to slow down and check the recordings in my head; recordings that say, “I am not good enough.” “I can’t believe that I still struggle with this.” “Do they like me?” etc. Instead, I desire to apply God’s truths – I am loved (John 3:16, Rom. 5:8), I am ransomed (1 Tim. 2:6), I am His and He is mine (Song of Solomon 2:16, 6:3).

Finally, a common thread throughout the weekend was the act of waiting on the Lord with a hope-filled expectancy. Waiting is an active word where we anticipate God’s promises in Scripture. It is through the Word wherein we learn His character and what He is capable of doing. Let us dig into His Word daily, in solitude, as well as with our friends, families, and communities. Let His Word speak for Him, not our experiences and fleeting emotions. This is a work of the Holy Spirit, and I pray for my DCC sisters, as well as for myself, that we will continue to study together, consider God’s greatness together, discuss together, and wait together, hope-filled and expectantly, in Christ. For His truth is a necessary treasure!

I would encourage you all to save the date for our 2018 Women’s Retreat, February 9-10. I’m already looking forward to another great weekend of growing in faith, focusing on God’s truths, and connecting with you ladies!

Christ is all,

Tiffany Butler

Apr 28
2017

Last Call | A Pastoral Invite to the Women’s Retreat

Discipleship, Event, Teaching | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

DCC Ladies,

Next weekend the women of DCC will be heading over the mountains to Suncadia for 24 hours of God-saturated learning, intentional relationship-building, and interactive fun. This will be our first women’s retreat, and though I won’t be there, I couldn’t be more excited about the theme: The Greatness of God. Who we understand God is, and what he is like, shapes everything about us, from how we view ourselves to how we relate to others, from how we handle suffering to how we tackle our sin, from where we find durable joy to where we find rest amidst the crazy. So, don’t get caught thinking that the greatness of God is merely an abstract theological truth. Our souls were made to revel in His greatness and live out of that profound reality. Ladies, that’s what next weekend is all about.

So, in light of that, I am making a last pastoral call to any women who have yet to register. As of today we have 90 women signed-up. That is really encouraging! Our prayerful aim is 120. Let’s say that DCC averages 650 people on Sunday and half are women. That makes roughly 325 women. That means there are still 200+ women who have time to participate in our inaugural retreat. My encouragement to you: register. You will not regret it. We understand that not all of you can make it, but this is for those of you that can. If you’ve waited this long, there are probably some barriers, so let me offer the following encouragements.

#1 The gift of carving out intentional space to learn about God.

Our culture is marked by busyness. Work demands. School demands. Kid demands. Project demands. Schedule demands. 24-hour news. Endless social media feeds. It takes intentionality to slow down for five minutes, let alone an entire day. That makes this retreat a gift. It is a gift to carve out intentional space in your calendar to learn about the greatness of God alongside others seeking to do the same. This kind of intentionality is good for our souls. Don’t miss out on this gift. 

#2 The gift of building new relationships.

Or, maybe you just don’t know anyone. It can be intimidating entering into something like this without knowing anyone else. We all get that. But, here’s the thing: that’s what retreats are for! More relational-traction can be gained with a retreat than with a dozen brief Sunday meet-and-greets. A retreat is the perfect place to get to know others. No one is “busy.” You’re all there for the same purpose. So, will this require you to take a step of faith? Yes. Will you be alone? No. Will you forge new relationships with others? For sure. Will it be worth it? No doubt. Embrace this as a gift of building new relationships.  

#3 The gift of temporarily getting out of your context. 

We all know what a gift it is to pause our normal rhythms for a change of scenery. Our family tries to get out of the city at least once a month. The process to get into the woods can be challenging, but once we’re there I always ask, “Why did I hesitate? This is amazing.” It is a gift to temporarily get out of our context to think, laugh, rest, and reflect—especially when it involves clean mountain air, tall evergreens and a river in your backyard (i.e. Suncadia). Sometimes that’s what it takes to get the fresh perspective we’ve been looking for. Embrace this retreat as a gift to get out of your context for a weekend.  

#4 The gift of telling the enemy to take a hike. 

For years as a new believer I noticed that all kinds of things came at me when I was presented with an opportunity to go on a retreat: family emergencies, other plans, lack of funds, sudden desire to be alone, etc. Often, I needed someone to come alongside me and say, “You really need to go to this and I’ll do whatever it takes to make that happen.” So, in most cases, I went. I can recall cases where I even regretted it while I was on my way there. But, guess what? Not once did I regret it afterwards. Not once. I’ve come to see that this is a common tactic of the enemy to keep us from opportunities like this that are sure to increase our faith, deepen our joy, and anchor our love in God—and all that he is for us, in Jesus. The enemy doesn’t want that. He wants us at home by ourselves watching Netflix. So, embrace the gift of telling the enemy to take hike. Put aside doubts. Change plans. Get your shift covered. Take a step of faith. You won’t regret it. 

Ladies, you’re going to have a great time. All that said, here are the details: 

Dates: Friday, May 5th – Saturday, May 6th
Details, registration, scholarship info
Retreat FAQ
Carpool link
Questions: events@downtowncornerstone.org

Q: Will you join me in praying for 30 more women to sign up by this weekend?  

Christ is all, 

Pastor Adam