Please join us for our annual Volunteer Appreciation Night! This will be a night of entertainment and appreciation as we honor all of our outstanding volunteers that help make Existence Church happen.

We have the pleasure of hosting and hearing from two incredibly insightful Christian leaders on May 20th. They are Tyler Reagin and Evan Hodge. Tyler is the The President of Catalyst Leader. Evan is the Director of Business Development for Dutch Bros Coffee. They are both passionate about helping others know, love, and serve Jesus. Make sure to bring a friend and join us!

There will be food and childcare provided. Please RSVP if you will be needing childcare as we have limited sitters.

You can RSVP here or through the evite.
http://evite.me/ju16SWFZHK

Inside Existence April

Church Family,

I hope you are enjoying your week! I wanted to let you know that the April edition of “Inside Existence” is available. It is a short 10 minute podcast designed to help us celebrate what God is doing in our church, clarify our mission/vision, and clearly communicate important updates. Thank you ahead of time for taking a few moments to tune in this month.

When: Saturday April 21st and 22nd.

All information can be found here: http://mademarketsd.com/

We hope our church community will come out on Friday April 21st and Saturday April 22nd to enjoy this fantastic event! Read on to hear what Made Market Co-Director, Sarah Baumgart, has to say about Made Market, MOPS, and what you can expect at the event.

“Made Market SD is a San Diego craft fair that features 50+ carefully curated, local craft talent and artisans that are exclusive to handmade goods. Made Market started with a dream of being a way to love on community and give back. My love language is acts of service, and being a maker I wanted to reach the handmade community as everything is inspired and curated with tons of love.

It began with wanting to partner with Moms of Pre Schoolers (MOPS) at Existence Church to help raise money to fund scholarships for those who are looking to join a community of moms who are on this beautiful mess of a journey we call motherhood. We’ve all been placed in this time and place in history, as the tribe of women who are raising the world. And the beauty of it is that we don’t all have to agree with one another, but everyone is in and we all need each other.

MOPS been a huge blessing to me and many others who joined when I did and after. Kim Hotsenpiller (Co-Director of Made Market) is the director of MOPS at Existence Church. I asked Kim to journey along with me and keep this going, and even through her uncertainty, God definitely spoke to her about being BOLD, and I thank God every day for this. Even though I’m the creative brain and founder, Kim brings so much of what I didn’t have to make this even more a success. I couldn’t and wouldn’t be doing this without her. God placed her in this big vision for many reasons and we are so blessed to be doing this together.”

What you can expect on Saturday for a $3 entry fee (kids are free!):

  • 50 hand-picked vendors

  • make & take table

  • raffle prizes every 30 minutes with handmade goodies donated by our amazing vendors (must be present to win and claim raffle prizes)

  • darling photo booth you will definitely want to take advantage of

  • live music!!

  • be one of the first 50 shoppers to snag one of our amazing swag bags

And most exciting of all, take note of our new location in Rancho Bernardo, which is bigger and easier to find, with plenty of parking available!  10960 Via Frontera, San Diego 92127(link to Google Maps)

So there you have it! Now all you need to do is text a few girlfriends and make a day of it: grab your Starbucks and come out to shop our 4th annual Made Market!

We can’t wait to see you!

Made Market Team

mmks-3386-700x465

Good Friday

GOOD FRIDAY EXPERIENCE – FRIDAY APRIL 14TH – TIME: 6PM

Join us for a unique evening experience to reflect and meditate on the tragedy and triumph of the death of Jesus. We will provide a variety of elements to engage and examine our hearts in light of the cross.

For more information about Easter – Click Here

Are you looking for a place to celebrate Easter in San Diego. We would like to invite you to join us for an easter weekend focused on honoring the death and resurrection of Jesus. We will have a Good Friday service, Community Easter Egg Hunt, and Easter Sunday morning services. Invite a friend, dress casual and look forward to a great experience together. All events will be held at 10960 Via Frontera, San Diego, CA 92127. For more information contact our Community Coordinator Samantha at samantha.yoboud@gmail.com

Also if you are looking to find more information about LENT take a moment and click here.

GOOD FRIDAY EXPERIENCE – FRIDAY APRIL 14TH – TIME: 6PM

Join us for a unique evening experience to reflect and meditate on the tragedy and triumph of the death of Jesus. We will provide a variety of elements to engage and examine our hearts in light of the cross.

COMMUNITY EASTER EGG HUNT – SATURDAY APRIL 15TH – TIME: 10AM

You are invited to our annual family Easter Egg hunt! All ages are welcome to join us for an exciting and fun day. We will have bounce houses, live music, Easter bunny photo booth, free food and more. Bring your own easter basket and get ready for a great time.

EASTER SUNDAY SERVICES – SUNDAY APRIL 16TH – TIME: 9AM &11AM

Bring your family and friends to celebrate the life changing news of the resurrection of Jesus. You can expect to be encouraged, challenged and loved. Everyone is welcome and we believe with God anything is possible. Dress casual and join us Easter Sunday.

SHARE WITH OTHERS

We have attached below a view invites you can use on your social media outlets.

36423145 - happy child in spring field. young girl relax outdoors. freedom concept 36423145 - happy child in spring field. young girl relax outdoors. freedom concept

Community Easter Egg Hunt

We want to invite you to our Community Wide Easter Egg Hunt! All ages are welcome for an exciting and enjoyable day. We will have bounce houses, live music, easter bunny photo booth, free food and more. Bring your own easter basket, invite a friend and get ready for a great time.

KEY INFORMATION

+ Date/Time: Saturday, April 15th, 2017

+ Time:10am (Egg Hunt will be starting at 10:30am sharp)

+ Cost: Free

+ Location: 10960 Via Frontera, 92127
If you have questions or want more information contact krystalathomson@gmail.com 

Join us for this years Benefit Bowl, THE HUNGER GAMES. What better way to support or neighboring communities and live out Existence Church’s vision and values in a fun way by playing or supporting a flag football tournament. Let’s live out our vision by being an:

Inclusive: inviting friends and family, coworkers, other church members to play

Missional: Partnering with the Family Welcome Center and providing hunger relief by raising money as a team

Community: Having fun and getting to know members of the church better

Date: Saturday March 25th

Time: 9AM first game

Location: Bishops School – La Jolla
Cause: Partnering with Family Welcome Center
How to donate, join a team or sign up your team: Download the “Be Neighborly” App DOWNLOAD HERE
If you have questions, contact our community coordinator Sam Yoboud Sam@existencechurch.com
More on Hunger Games (Benefit Bowl)

More on the Family Welcome Center:

Intro Video

What is the Family Life Center?

The Family Welcome Center is a community organization founded by pastors through the Christian and Missionary Alliance here in San Diego.  They have been a part of the C&MA for years and our neighbors and partners in ministry for years as well.  This center is a place for the current refugee population of San Diego – largely homeless and in poverty – to come and receive education, english classes, resume building and job training as well as food.  These people are provided these services because they are in large homeless or struggling. This is also an opportunity for the gospel to be shared with people who have likely never heard the good news of salvation in Jesus. We believe God has called us to partner with our neighbors and love their poor and powerless, their homeless and in need.  We are not making a passive aggressive political stance and will not be a church that does so ever.  We are simply choosing to serve the homeless in partnership with our neighbors as we believe God has called us to.

Church Family,

I hope you are enjoying your week! I wanted to let you know that the second edition of “Inside Existence” is available. It is a short 10 minute podcast that I attempting to share by the 10th of every month to help us celebrate what God is doing in our church, clarify our mission/vision, and clearly communicate important updates. Thank you ahead of time for taking a few moments to tune in this month. You can also download it by clicking here.

Have a great week!

Pastor Shawn

Discovering Lent

By Sarah Phillips from Crosswalk

What is Lent – A Time Set Aside

Take a moment to watch this video – click here. 

Take a moment to download this free guide/devotional resource.

Just as we set aside time to spiritually prepare for Christmas Day, it makes sense to set aside time to prepare for the two most important days of the Christian year. Lent is a time that offers us an opportunity to come to terms with the human condition we may spend the rest of the year running from and it brings our need for a Savior to the forefront. Like Advent, Lent is a time to open the doors of our hearts a little wider and understand our Lord a little deeper, so that when Good Friday and eventually Easter comes, it is not just another day at church but an opportunity to receive the overflowing of graces God has to offer.

But unlike the childlike joy associated with the season of Advent, with it’s eager anticipation of the precious baby Jesus, Lent is an intensely penitential time as we examine our sinful natures and return to the God we have, through our own rebelliousness, hurt time and again. Lent is also an opportunity to contemplate what our Lord really did for us on the Cross – and it wasn’t pretty. But ultimately, the purpose of Lent does not stop at sadness and despair – it points us to the hope of the Resurrection and the day when every tear will be dried (Rev. 21:3).

And about three o’clock Jesus cried with a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Matthew 27:33-49

Although the nature of suffering is not one that offers itself to easy explanations or pat answers, the answers we seek seem to make the most sense in light of the Cross. There is nothing in the world – no religion, philosophy, or material comfort – that offers such a powerful answer to life’s toughest questions as the two slabs of wood on which our Savior died.  Although I was drawn to Christianity in search of joy, it’s the Cross that keeps me coming back day after day, year after year. It is this time of year, known as Lent, that I am reminded of what Jesus did for me.

When I look into the eyes of our suffering God, I’m in awe – suddenly the complexity of our Lord, the love of our Lord, the humanity of our Lord shows through. I realize God is not just some nebulous energy source or a grandfather sitting in the clouds – He is so much more. The Cross is where our faith stands when all other faith’s fail. Christ’s sacrifice and his subsequent resurrection are the true “cruxes” of the Christian faith. Without one there would be no salvation, without the other, no hope. This is why Good Friday and the following Easter Sunday are the most important dates on the Christian calendar – even more so than Christmas.

How Lent Started

So where does Lent come from, and how do we “do” Lent? The Lenten season developed as part of the historical Christian calendar and is typically celebrated by Catholics and some mainline Protestant churches that follow a liturgical calendar. Although its format has varied throughout the centuries and throughout different cultures, the basic concept remains the same: to open our hearts to God’s refining grace through prayer, confession, fasting, and almsgiving as we anticipate Holy Week. Lent traditionally lasts forty days, modeled after Christ’s forty day fast in the desert, and ends on Good Friday. In the Western Church, Lent officially begins with a reminder of our mortality on Ash Wednesday (this year, falling on March 1st).

Practicing Lent Today

As with Advent, you can benefit from celebrating Lent even if your church does not formally do so. Here are some of the key elements of the Lenten season, along with some of the symbolism that comes with it. Many of these practices can be celebrated both individually and as a community:

Purple: Like Advent, the official color for Lent is purple. Usually, churches that celebrate Lent choose the deepest, darkest shade of purple for this special season. They may also strip their churches bare of some of the usual decorations adorning the walls. Purple is the color of repentance for sins and also symbolizes the state of our souls outside the light of Christ. During this time, pray for those who do not know Christ and for those who have sinned gravely against Him.

Confession: As mentioned above, Lent is a penitential season, even more so than Advent. The 40 days are set aside to really examine areas of recurring sin in our lives that prevent us from being conformed to God’s Will.

Keep in mind the idea here is not to be overly scrupulous or to deceive yourself into thinking you can earn heaven through your own goodness. The goal is to honestly examine your life in light of God’s Word and to make a commitment to change in any areas you have not submitted to the Lord. A good way to start an examination of conscience is by praying Psalm 139, verse 23-24: “Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my thoughts. See if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” Then, hold up your life to the Ten Commandments. Confess, perhaps even to your pastor or an accountability partner (James 5:16), the ways you’ve sinned against God, thank Him for His forgiveness, and ask Him for the grace to change.

Fasting and Prayer: Fasting is a practice that has really gone by the wayside in many Christian circles. Yet, if done correctly, it can be a powerful time of renewing your relationship with God. Fasting can be found in both the Old Testament and the New, with Moses (Exodus 34:28; Deuteronomy 9:9,18 ), Elijah (1 Kings 19:8), and our Lord (Matthew 4:2) all participating in 40-day fasts. Fasting is a way of denying ourselves the excesses of life so that we might be more attuned to the Lord’s voice. It is also a way of disciplining yourself, strengthening your “spiritual muscles” so to speak, so that when temptations arise in life, you are already used to saying “no” to your desires. And finally, fasting is also a way of participating, in a small way, in the sufferings of Christ and can be particularly powerful when accompanied by prayer and confession.

A word of caution: although fasting can be a wonderful spiritual exercise, it is also an easy one to abuse. Make sure that when you fast, you do not deprive yourself so much that you do harm to your body. Fasting should only be practiced by adults and mature teens. Also, take into account any medical conditions or nutritional needs when deciding what and how much to abstain from (I recommend consulting with a doctor and/or spiritual advisor before undertaking a serious fast). On the spiritual front, Jesus warns us to guard against pride while fasting (Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18).

Meditating on Christ’s Sacrifice for Mankind: In addition to periodic fasting and prayer, our scriptural meditations typically turn to the salvation offered to us through Christ’s suffering. Read Old Testament Scriptures prophesying the suffering of Christ and the New Testament Gospel accounts.

Charity/Almsgiving: A very important element of the Lenten season is becoming aware of not only the suffering and sacrifice of Christ but also to the suffering of others. Between now and Good Friday, choose one way you can increase your giving to those in need. It could be through extra financial offerings, donating goods you no longer need or use to charity, or increasing your personal time commitment to a ministry or cause close to your heart.

Lent is a time when Christians separate from the world; when we find out our faith is not just a feel-good, self-help religion but one that answers the deepest questions of life and eternity. Those who journey through the Lenten season will enter the Easter season with an increased appreciation for who God is and what He has done for us. And the joy of Resurrection, as well as the promises of eternity, will not be soon forgotten.

As we move toward Easter, we will spend six weeks in a series titled, “Heartbeats.” In the same way that our heart beats to a rhythm, there are spiritual rhythms that we can practice to help us be more connected and in line with God throughout the week. Our culture emphasizes physical health. We train our bodies to be strong and efficient, but we often neglect our spiritual health. Over the course of this series we will look at several disciplines, or rhythms, that will align our hearts with God’s heart.

The Layout for the Series

+ Heartbeats: Establishing a Rooted Identity – March 5th

+ Heartbeats: Encountering God through His Word – March 12th

+ Heartbeats: Soul Alignment through Repentance – March 19th

+ Heartbeats: Resting as an Act of Faith through the Sabbath – March 26th

+ Heartbeats: Investing and Inviting Others – April 2nd (Student Ministry Sunday)

+ Heartbeats: Going Public through Baptism – April 16th

Further Resources

+ Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life by Donald Whitney

+ Celebration of Discipline by Richard Foster

+ Spirit Disciplines by Dallas Willard

+ Soul Keeping by John Ortberg

+ Habits of Grace by David Matis