Thursday, 27 April 2017 18:38

mel tavares150x200Mel is currently the Communications Director at VCC. She is the founder of VCC's Kingdom Writers Ministries. Prior to coming to VCC, Mel worked for over 15 years as a journalist, freelance content writer, and editor. (After 20 years in the field of Rehab/Special Education) She is the published author of 2 books and is working on a 3rd one. She is a Bible School student and loves to expend her days ministering in one way or another.  Mel is 'Joe's Wife', mom/stepmom to 1 high school senior, 6 adult kids and several sons-in-laws, and is soon to welcome grandbabies #8 & 9 to the family. 

 

 

Digital Discipleship
Mel Tavares

Here are three questions for you to consider:

  • How do you share your faith in the real world?
  • How do you live out your faith online?
  • How do you see other sharing their faith online?

We are called to preach the gospel to all nations. It should be our goal to go beyond preaching the gospel to all people. Rather, we should purpose to make disciples of them.  A large part of making disciples is teaching and equipping believers (Christ followers), that they may be prepared to live the life Christ has called them to.

When we disciple, we  are intentional about  creating a Biblical community of believers who are passionately committed, sensitive and submitted, are mission driven, are family oriented and keep family as a priority, ones who are responsible citizens, and are evangelistically bold.

Technology pervades nearly every aspect of our daily lives, especially those of our youth and millennial adults, and yet we rarely talk about it in our churches. In this media-driven world that we live in, utilizing digital platforms for ministry has never been easier.  Today’s youth are ‘digital natives’ who are tech savvy and already using every possible platform of media.

People carry powerful smartphones and tablets, and they work daily on desktop and laptop computers. They are continually plugged into the internet and social networks—technologies which have completely saturated our daily lives and work. Nearly all students and adults have smartphones, and even if they aren’t checking them, they are fiddling around in their purses and pockets checking for them.

Social media saturates our daily lives, like eating breakfast and taking the bus to school or commuting to work, so much so that not sharing our feelings in images and updates would be foreign, even in our faith lives.

Why not use the digital platforms to spread the gospel, equip believers, and create disciples?:

What Can You Do?

You can tweet prayers and post happenings on Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter. Also, liberally use Instagram and Facebook Live, share the VCC App, Use the hashtag #VCCinCT, and numerous other possibilities. If you use these platforms, be sure to interact with the VCC media pages, share the posts, retweet etc. By doing so, the VCC reach will expand into your sphere of influence.

You can connect with others and connect them to God and to our church by giving them glimpses of what God is doing in people’s lives through the ministries of Victory Christian Church. Invite them to events, share the news and announcements with them, and get them connected here at VCC.  

You can help people grow and become equipped by posting encouraging Scriptures, graphics, articles, insights and more.

Learn More About Qualities of a Disciple

VCC’s Senior Pastor, Peter Leal spent several sessions preaching a series called ‘The 10 Qualities of a Disciple’. You can listen to the full series on the VCC church APP  or on our YouTube channel. 

Thursday, 27 April 2017 18:25

The Conflagration
Liz Hall ® 2017

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Liz is a founding member of the Kingdom Writers Ministry of VCC, and is the Vice-President of the Chapter Board. She has written extensively, been published on multiple occassions, and is the author of a published memoir/tribute. She is the director of the VCC Singles Ministry, is a lover of all things outdoors, of music, of dogs and of her family. 

The Conflagaration 

As I drove down a familiar street early one morning I noticed smoke coming from a building I had driven by many times.  It was a large structure and had been reconstructed into individual apartments.  I’m not sure how many people lived there but I had always guessed it was quite a few based on the number of cars in the adjacent lot and the activity in and around the place.

Seeing the smoke my heart began to race and I quickly pulled over, slammed the car into park and ran towards the front entrance.  This was dangerous; someone had to warn these people.  Not thinking I ran into the foyer and surprisingly through a door into the hallway.  I frantically began knocking on doors. 

To my dismay the first few doors did not open in response to my knocking and I didn’t know if there was anyone home or if they just chose not to respond.  Were they sleeping? Did they not hear me?  How could I warn them of the danger if they did not respond?  Desperate to get the message out I moved on.

I felt relieved as the next few doors were opened by occupants who received my warnings and left for safety outside of the building.  I was so thankful they were free from danger, but within a few minutes I saw that once they were safe a few decided they had left something of importance behind and returned inside towards the imminent danger.  “No”, I pleaded, “don’t go back, stay safely outside”, but I could not dissuade them from returning to the burning building.

I continued on.  Incredulously, there were some who opened their doors but upon not knowing who I was did not believe me.  They did not smell the smoke and were not alarmed by the commotion; they were convinced the message was not for them.  They had no visible proof of smoke or fire and decided they could just go about their lives convinced they would be ok.  I begged, pleading with them to please come away from the danger.  I warned them that staying meant they may be consumed by fire, smoke and impending death.  I told them I knew the way out and they could be free from this danger, but it seemed as though they neither heard nor understood my words. 

I quickly moved to other doors and floors in the building. Some people had already smelled the smoke and were on their way to safety.  As other apartment doors opened in response to my knocking the occupants who were warned of the smoke and impending flames heard and understood.  They responded accordingly.  They heeded my words and fled the danger heading towards the outside where they could be free from being burned, overtaken by smoke inhalation or possible death.

In the end some were saved but sadly some were not.  They all received the same message of danger that could lead to death but all did not hear or respond.

Jesus said “Though seeing, they do not see; though hearing, they do not hear or understand.  In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah: ‘You will be ever hearing but never understanding; you will be ever seeing but never perceiving’. For this people’s heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them” Matt 13: 13-15

Tuesday, 14 February 2017 18:54

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Mollie Astromowicz has been a part of the Kingdom Writer's Ministry throughout her high school years and continues to be a vital part during her college years. Mollie is studying Early Childhood Education and serves faithfully at VCC in the Children's Ministry. She is a gifted, anointed, and prolific writer across multiple genres. Her poetry and short stories are inspirational to all who read them. Here is an insightful piece: 

Come Alive

God took a hold of me and led me through His Spirit to an open valley that was filled with many bones. These bones were all around the valley – strewn about, lying there on the ground without life – they seemed like they had been lying there for a long time for all the bones were very dry. I didn’t know why the Lord had led me to this valley of dry bones, so I asked him.

            “Lord, why have you led me to this place?”

            “Tell me, son, what do you see here?” He replied. I wasn’t sure what He was going to show me with this, but I answered the question anyways.

            “Well, I see a large open valley filled with bones. Dry bones. Everywhere I look in this place, I can only see these bones.”

            “Do they have any life in them, child?” God asked me. I found this question a little silly seeing as I had just told Him that these bones were dry.

            “No, I don’t think they have any life in them. I don’t mean to sound rude, Lord, but I just told you that these bones are all dry. Isn’t that a sure sign of death?” I inquired. There was a sudden burst of wind. The bones shook in the breeze as did the bare branches of the trees. This whole land seemed dead.

            “Yes, that is a sign of death, isn’t it? May you please do me a small favor, Son?”

            “What may I do for you, Lord?” I wondered if he wanted me to dispose of these bones and make the valley look alive again.

            “Tell these bones to come alive.”

            “What? Are you serious?”

            “Yes, tell these bones to come alive. I would like you to tell them a prophetic message.”

            “What might this message be?”

        Valley of Dry Bones“I would like you to look at these dry bones and say, ‘This is a prophetic message from the Sovereign Lord. The Lord says: Take heart! For I am going to put breath back into you and bring life into your bones once again! I am going to put muscles and flesh onto your bones and cover them with skin as they once were! I am going to put breath into you once again, and you will come to life! Then you will know that I am Lord.’” A gentle breeze blew at this message and for the first time, I noticed there was a stream flowing nearby. I carefully navigated through the bones and watched the stream flow gently. There were small fish swimming about and many aquatic plants thriving. This was a representation of life in a place full of death.

            So, I looked at all the dry bones around me and spoke the message that the Lord had given me. As I spoke, the bones rattled and started to come together. Soon, they formed skeletons. I kept speaking the message from the Lord, and the skeletons formed muscles and skin to cover the muscles.

            “What do I say now, Lord?” I asked. “These bones have formed bodies, but they do not breathe.”

            “I want you to speak a prophetic message to the four winds. I want you to speak to them and say, ‘This is a prophetic message from the Sovereign Lord saying: Come, breath of the four winds! Come and breathe into these dead bodies so that they may live once again!’”

            I looked about the valley and the calm stream. Then I spoke the prophetic message as the Lord had instructed me to. All at once, the wind started to howl. It didn’t come from just one direction, but it came from all four! They came into the valley saying, “Breathe, O, Breath of God!” and filled each body with life once again. The bodies all came their feet and formed a great army. I was astonished at the sight of this.

            “My son,” the Lord said lovingly, “This army of bones represents the people of Israel. They are crying out saying, ‘We have become old and dry bones! All of our hope is lost, and our nation is finished!’ I want you to go them and speak – just as you did to these bones. I want you to speak a prophetic message to them and say, ‘This is a prophetic message from the Sovereign Lord. The Lord speaks to you and says: ‘My people, I am will open your graves of exile and cause you to rise up once again. Then, I will bring you back to the land of Israel. When this happens, my people, then you will know that I am the Lord, your one and only God. I will put my Spirit in you, and you will live once again and return to your own land – your home. Then you will know that I, the Sovereign Lord, have spoken, and I have done what I said. Yes, the Lord has spoken!”

            I stood in the valley, and looked around at all I had done – the army of men that were dry bones not too long ago, the once bare trees had gotten their leaves back, and birds filled these trees and filled the valley with their song – and decided to go to the people of Israel and tell them the Lord’s message. If I could make a great army out of dry bones, I thought, what great things will the Lord allow me to do with the people of Israel? 

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Thursday 7:00 pm

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