The Heart of the Matter

The Heart of the Matter

It has been amazing and inspiring to hear Pastor Matt teach on the book of Acts and the early church; but, this week I am going to step away from Acts and back to the heart of the matter.

In the church it is a common struggle to wonder if you are “doing enough”. When I catch myself wondering this I know my heart is not in the right place. It is in these times that I must return to the heart of the matter. I tend to ask myself “Why are you doing this?” Or “What is the purpose of saying that or signing up for that?” If my answer has anything to do with me feeling better about myself, I know I am in dangerous waters. It is in these times that I have to get back into The Word and spend time, intentionally, in His presence. It is in His presence that He kindly humbles me and reminds me that all I do must be about Him and for Him.

In his book, James refers to works. In chapter 2 verses 14-17 he asks: “What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, ‘Go in peace, be warmed and filled,’ without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.” And then, in his letter to the Colossians, Paul reminds us: Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.” (3:23)

So yes, we are supposed to “do” and “work” but it is all about the “why”. Why do we do what we do? It is from the overflow of our love for Jesus and our faith in Him. When I read James 2 “works” isn’t what stands out to me. Instead, it reminds me of Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians: “If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.” (1 Corinthians 13:1-3)

Lord Jesus, may our work be the overflow of our hearts. Convict us and redirect us when we are doing anything for selfish gain or recognition. May we be the body of Christ in unity together. May our love for You overflow onto others. Use us to do your work and perform miracles that would bring the lost and broken into a relationship with You. You are the light in us, may we shine that light ever so brightly in this dark and broken world. Amen.

In Him,

Katie Karlson


3228 Gatewood Ave, Indian River, MI 49749, USA

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Show a three-year-old a rainbow and his eyes pop open, he laughs and murmurs something that sounds semi close to English; that's wonder. Show a third grader how pleasing God connects to honoring her parents and she will most likely look at you funny and continue eating her pizza; that's discovery. As a teacher, church leader, or parent you want a curriculum that will help you connect the love and worship of God to good decision-making for your elementary school students. You want something that will help them see the value of respecting authority and treating their friends like they are human, not SpongeBob®. You need it to be simple. You would love it to be flexible. You want it to suit your individual needs. Time to go to the basics. What if by the time your child reaches 6th grade they will know these five core truths:

God is the Holy Creator.
I can trust God's Word (Bible).
I can trust Jesus with everything.
I should try to live like Jesus lived (make wise choices by His Word).
The world/culture does not usually agree with God's Word.


Most kids form their entire idea of who God is, and choose whether nor not they'll have a relationship with Him before leaving 5th grade!

Sunday at a Glance

The nursery and classrooms will open at 10:15 for check in. 


Each week the kids (ages 0-9) join us for worship in the sanctuary. After worship, the kids head to their respective classrooms to learn more about God and how to apply His word to our lives. 


We are happy to answer your questions in person at any of our locations or you can contact us by email