Time to Celebrate “Love”

The month of February elicits strong, emotional responses out of many people. Not only is it the month of the Super Bowl (and this game always seems to bring about passion from even the most uninterested people), but it is also the month where we celebrate “love”. Some people absolutely love to celebrate Valentine’s Day. They will wear pink or red all day, send flowers or cards to their special valentines, head to the store to make sure they pick up the heart-shaped Russell Stover box of chocolates, and express love in countless other ways. While some people are very excited about celebrating Valentine’s Day, others come together and celebrate their disdain for the holiday. Regardless of which side of the debate you’re on, we in fact do celebrate love. 

I like to celebrate on Valentine’s Day. But one thing I know and long to impart to my family and loved ones is that we need to have an accurate view of love to fully appreciate and celebrate love. There is no better place than Scripture to find the definition of love, and today I want to take you to 1 Corinthians 13: The Love Chapter. In here we see Paul give an amazing discourse on love. Most of us know the passage: love is patient, love is kind, it does not envy, and the list continues. This is what love is! As we celebrate true love this year, let me draw you to a couple of points about celebrating Love. 

  • True Love Originates in Jesus Christ—1 John 4:19 states that “we love because He first loved us.” All love begins with God. He’s the source of love. He’s love perfected. He loves perfectly. There is no way that we can be loved any more than what He already pours out on us. We celebrate love because we are loved by Jesus Christ. This love then pours out of us onto others. This is real love. 
  • Jesus’ Love is Described in 1 Corinthians 13. Instead of simply hearing that love is patient and kind, instead hear it as Jesus’ love is patient, kind, doesn’t envy or boast, isn’t proud or rude, isn’t self-seeking, doesn’t keep records of wrongs, always hopes, perseveres, never fails. And these words don’t fully encapsulate Jesus’ love for us—it is much greater! 
  • Love is a Choice—will you choose to allow the love of Jesus to flow from you to those around you? Will you choose to love your spouse with Jesus’ love? Your children? Your church family? Your coworkers? Your classmates? There are times when people around us will seem unlovable. If we try to love on our own, it will be an impossible task to love them. But with the love of Jesus, all things are possible. We must love. 

What an amazing display of love we see! 

My prayer and encouragement for you is that you would celebrate “love”. Celebrate Jesus’ love for you. Celebrate the love He gives you to pour into others. Don’t withhold the celebration—love is worth it! 

A Family Ministry

Promiseland, Faithweavers, and Circle Drive Students are ministries to the family. Sometimes they are perceived as a "glorified babysitting service," where it is a time to drop children off so that parents can have a break. Some may volunteer in these ministries with the same mindset. 

That mindset is not what we desire out of our children's ministry, nor is it what God wants! We long to see our next Generation come to know Jesus as their Savior, to grow in their walk with God, and to see them become contagious in their faith! 

We are here as a resource to share the Gospel and to provide God's Word into their lives during these programs. However, these ministries are in place to equip the parents in training their children to grow in their walk with God. 

Parents I want to remind you of the big job that we have to raise our children so that they love the Lord with all their heart, soul and mind, Matthew 22:37, and to encourage you to do this by spending time with your children and talking to them about God. 

Here are some ideas to help you. In Promiseland we provide activity pages that show you what we have talked about, the key verses for the story, discussion questions, family activities, and a memory verse. Seek time each day with them to ask them the discussion questions, read the story to them again from the Bible, help them memorize the verses, and explain to them the meaning of it. Ask the teachers and leaders what your children have learned in Faithweavers. They would be happy to share that with you so that you can continue the conversation with your child. Seek engagement with your child, ask them genuine questions, have them paint, draw a picture, or act out the story, whatever makes them tick and helps them retain what they have learned. 

For your teenagers, ask them questions based on what we talked about in youth group, if they had any small group questions, or how they plan to apply what we talked about to their life. Email, text, or Facebook message me if you would like to know what we talked about or a copy of the small group questions. Pray with them over meals and talk to them about God over the dinner table. 

I want you to know that I write this to you as a parent and not perfect when it comes to this by any stretch of the imagination. I try but sometimes get "too busy," "tired," or "home too late" to do this with my children. Teaching them every day is something I fail at occasionally but will always continue striving to achieve because I know it is critical for me to take the time to engage my children and to raise them up for the Lord. 

God has given us that job as parents! Let me encourage you not to give up if you miss a day, but instead seek the Lord for His help in this area and talk to your children about God the next day. 

An Incredible Year

The year 2017 has been incredible for Circle Drive Students, and when I look back, I see how the Lord has been working in them. Please allow me to share some of these moments with you. 

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When youth group on Sunday Night's kicked off this school year, the youth group split into two different times. Middle School starts at 4:30 pm and ends at 6:00 pm. Sr. High begins at 6:30 and ends at 8:00 pm. We made this decision through much prayer, and the Lord has blessed the youth ministry. There have been many new faces for Middle School, and we have seen a few new faces in Sr. High. It has been great to see the Lord work in both groups! 

This Fall we hosted a few outreach events, with the purpose of allowing our students to invite friends. The main event that God's hand was in was Reverb. This was an all-night event full of fun packed activities, held in Binghamton and put on by Word of Life Ministries - All for the sake of sharing the Gospel with teenagers. During this time three of our teens accepted Jesus as their Savior and five of them dedicated their lives for Him to use!!! Please pray that they will continue to grow in their walk with Jesus. 

Youth group and all the activities that take place, could not have been done without the volunteers that we have each Sunday night or the chaperones that sacrificed a night of sleep to go to Reverb and the drivers that got up at 4 am to pick us up (on the first day of hunting no less!) And don't forget the parents/volunteers that helped with Black Light Dodgeball, and the Candy Fundraiser. Thank you for your time and for serving God by helping us out! Your heart for youth is evident, in a culture where teens are often overlooked and left to figure out life on their own as best they can. Adults who truly care can make all the difference in the world. 

Looking back over the course of the year and how the Lord has blessed this ministry gives me a desire to say, "My soul makes its boast in the LORD; let the humble hear and be glad. Oh, magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt his name together". (Psalm 34:2-3). 

Do You Know WWJD?


Every generation has some sort of fad (or even multiple fads) that are expressed in the social culture. The 70s had bell bottoms. The 50s saw the beginning of the mobile culture and now drive ins and juke boxes were prevalent. When I was in high school in the 90s, there was another fad that was popular—WWJD. If you’re not familiar, WWJD is an acronym for “what would Jesus do.” People would have bracelets, pencils, T-shirts, and anything else that could be stamped with this incredible message. The whole premise would be to look at those letters and stop and think whether the behavior that you’re about to do would be something that Jesus would do.

This really is a good fad, and to be honest, one that the church of today needs as a guiding force in our walk with Jesus. But there was an issue back then as well as today. While people longed to act and think like Jesus, they didn’t understand how Jesus would act or think! They were simply taking best guesses instead of acting in a full knowledge of how Scripture shows us we are to act if we’re going to be like Jesus. 

Because of this, we are going to begin a new message series entitled “Knowing Jesus”. We’re going to look at the 4 books of the gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) and see different stories of Jesus’ interactions with people, lessons taught, and situations encountered so that we can see how Jesus really did life and how we can model our lives after His. While I know we’ll never be perfect, may the beginning of 2018 be a time where we simply know Jesus better, so we can better follow Him. 

Have a very happy and blessed New Year! 




A new school year has begun, and youth group has started with a four-week challenge, (Heartwork). The teenagers have been encouraged to help hurricane victims by earning money for them. They can do this by using their time, talent, and resources. The money they make from the challenge will go to CAMA, (Compassion, and Mercy Associates, part of the Alliance family) which will be used to minister to the hurricane victims by meeting their physical and spiritual needs. 

These four weeks will not only challenge the teenagers to raise money but to think about their spiritual walk with God. We have been focusing on, "spending ourselves not on ourselves," but instead "spending ourselves on others." They have been encouraged to seek what God wants, and not what they want in their own lives. We have talked about the pursuit of happiness through self-gain, and that it will only make them miserable; whereas seeking to please God by serving others will bring God’s fulfillment into their lives. 

You can support the teenagers during these four weeks by praying for them, taking an interest in how they are doing with the challenge, and by letting me know if there are any jobs that a teenager could do to raise money for the hurricane victims. Some of the ways you can pray for them are: 

  • God will use this challenge to help them grow closer to Him. 
  • They will take the challenge seriously. 
  • Teenagers would begin to see true fulfillment in serving God instead of themselves. 

    Thank you for your investment in the next generation! 
    Pastor Moe 

Isaiah 58:10 “and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness and your night will become like the noonday.” 

Catching the Vision

For over 130 years the Christian and Missionary Alliance has been taking the gospel message of Jesus Christ to the nations. This passion for reaching lost people with the gospel still resonates passionately among The Alliance family to this day. I firmly believe that our calling here at Circle Drive Alliance still beats with the passion of our founder Dr. Simpson as we seek to make disciples of Jesus here in our local community, there among our region, and everywhere, even to the ends of the earth. This is who we are.


I want to ask you to stop and think about whether or not you are as passionate for global missions as our founder was or as our Lord Jesus is? I think that if we honestly assess our hearts, we would have to answer that we probably aren’t as passionate for missions as we’d like to be. We often get distracted by the things that we feel in our own lives and forget about missions or put the nations on the back burner. 

To make sure that Jesus’ command to preach the gospel to the nations is constantly before us, we often need a refreshing of the vision. I want to inform you of a wonderful opportunity that I have. I have been approached by the District to be a part of a pastoral vision team that will gain a fresh perspective on what God is doing in the lives of the people of Bosnia and Germany. I am a part of a team of 4 lead pastors from around the district, and we will be there from November 7th-17th.

Our team will interact with international workers in their fields, participate in their work, meet the people whose lives have been touched by the gospel, and to prayerfully consider how we can better engage our churches and district in partnering with these workers and churches to take the gospel to the nations. I firmly believe that through this trip God will give voice to this incredible work and allow me to communicate His heart for the nations to you through this trip. 

Friends, this trip is all about how we can have greater engagement with the mission and our workers. I long for you to join me in prayer over the next months so that I will be able to hear from God in powerful ways. Also pray about how Jesus would have you participate with Him and us as we preach the gospel to the nations. I look forward to all that Jesus will do through this incredible time in our church. May God receive all glory, honor, and praise. 



Have you ever had a time in your life (I would imagine that you have if you think about it for a little while) where it seems that everywhere you look or the thoughts that you think revolve around a single theme? I’m experiencing one of those times in my life right now. It doesn’t matter what I read, what message I listen to, or how God whispers in my prayer and devotional life, there is a single theme that God is communicating to me. While these times are a little daunting and sometimes even unnerving, God usually uses these times as an incredible growth period for me. The topic that God is speaking to me about right now is a very simple one, yet is at the very core of our walk with Jesus—He’s talking to me about living our life of faith together. 

The notion of being together is one that is growing more complex as time passes by. If we look back 30 years ago, together meant face to face contact, living near family and friends, people knowing your face, personality, and makeup. But with the progression of technology, together in 2017 looks a lot different. We live in a transient society where people don’t plant roots in a specific place. We rely on social media to be connected with loved ones. I can’t even imagine how technology will evolve in the upcoming years and how community and togetherness will be impacted by it. 

There is one sure fact—we need to be together. Humans were wired by God for community, family, togetherness. Scripture addresses this all over, informing us of the necessity to community. “Don’t give up meeting together” is written in Hebrews. We see how the early church had everything in common and believers in Jesus were never seen alone—they had everything in common (not a plug for socialism, but rather a family). In fact, as Jesus was preparing to ascend to heaven after His resurrection, His priority was to commission the church—a place to live life together with the faithful. 

We need to be together. God knows this. We cannot hope to be successful followers of Jesus on our own. But what does this look like? How can we live our life of faith together? Our message series for the month of September is called “Together.” We’re going to examine 4 areas where we, as the church need to live life together—Our Purpose, Our Passion, Our Provision, Our Personalities. 

As we head into this new series, I want to ask you to enter into a season of prayer and seek God. Seek Him for His leading as you hear and respond to these messages. Seek Him for conviction if you’ve been neglecting the community. I know that Jesus longs to work as we come even closer together as His body. 

The Bridge 2017

I am writing this to you from the Resonate Conference hosted by The Alliance. It has been a wonderful time for me to grow Spiritually and to catch the vision of the Christian and Missionary Alliance. The president of the Alliance, John Stumbo, reminded the pastors here that we are to be a Christ-centered Acts 1:8 family. This is a great vision but how do we become a Christ-centered Acts 1:8 family? President Stumbo informed us that we do this through “loving, proclaiming, reaching, and launching others.” When you sent the youth to The Bridge Community Center last week, you were doing exactly that. 

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The teenagers were “launched” out last week to show love to a hurting community, and they were able to do this because of your love and financial support. Thank you for investing in the lives of our teenagers, showing them Christ’s love, and for believing in them enough to “launch” them off to The Bridge Community Center. 

Our typical day started at 9 am when we arrived at The Bridge. We worked very hard prepping for crafts, and games, ripping out carpet, taking things off walls, organizing rooms that were in disarray, putting new carpet in, taking out trash, and fixing the ninja rope course. A lot of hard labor was done each morning. The students were exhausted before lunch. After lunch, children from the community would start coming into The Bridge for VBS. The teens interacted with the children and showed them God’s love through opening game time, sitting with them during the lesson, helping them during craft time and then playing with them until their parents picked them up at 3:45 pm. After the children were gone, we would have a quick meeting about the day and then clean up from VBS. I am proud of the teenagers that went on The Bridge Missions trip. They worked hard and showed Christ’s love to the children in the community of Johnson City. 

Our students also experienced seeing children come to know Christ as their Savior. There was one child, specifically that the leader of The Bridge, Pastor Arnie Buehler, was excited about because of the way the child was expressing his Salvation to his parents; how he had come from a dark place to a place where he knows Jesus loves him. 

The effect this missions trip has on the teenagers does not end on our return home. The teens are impacted by seeing and experiencing your love and support for them. It gives them an ownership in serving God in our own church and beyond. This trip gave them a chance to see that they can serve God and show Christ’s love to others. 

This trip would not have been possible without your support. Thank you! 

A Common Theme

One of the many things I have enjoyed in my time alone with God is when He shows me something new in the Scriptures. It’s always been there but for some reason I had not noticed it before. This theme has stood out to me in the last few months and I want to share it with you. It is the Holy Spirit’s power working in His people. This theme is in the Old and New Testaments. I find this to be very important because the same Spirit that empowered them is the same Spirit that empowers us. The power of the Holy Spirit in a believer’s life is vital to serving our Savior, Sanctifier, Healer and Coming King. 

I always enjoy the stories of the Old Testament but not until recently did I notice the power of the Holy Spirit in a lot of these passages. Look at the story of Samson. The Philistines had received Samson as a prisoner and the Bible says, “then the Spirit of the Lord rushed upon Him”, (Judges 15:14 ESV). When that happened, he killed 1,000 Philistine men with the jawbone of a donkey. Another story in the Old Testament is that of David. “Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him, (David) in the midst of his brothers. And the Spirit of the LORD rushed upon David from that day forward”, (1 Samuel 16:13 ESV). David’s life became effective at this time because the Holy Spirit began to empower him. You can see this played out in the very next chapter where he takes on Goliath! 

There are stories in the New Testament that show the power of the Holy Spirit in the early church. One of my favorite stories is when we see the Holy Spirit empower Peter is in Acts 4. This is the same Peter who was scared and denied Jesus in Luke 22:54-62. Peter and John are arrested and they will not back down from preaching the Gospel. In this story Peter and John knew that the people who arrested them were the ones who called for the death of Jesus. Peter and John were not afraid but instead were filled with the Holy Spirit. This power allowed Peter to speak in boldness to them in Acts 4:18-13 ESV: 

“Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers of the people and elders, if we are being examined today concerning a good deed done to a crippled man, by what means this man has been healed, let it be known to all of you and to all people of Israel that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead-by him this man is standing before you well. This Jesus is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone. And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved”. Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished”. 

There are many instances in the Bible, (more than can be put in this Newsletter) where the Holy Spirit comes upon the person first and then they are effective for God. It is the same way for believers today as it was in the Old and New Testaments. If we want to serve God effectively, then we need to come to God and ask Him for help. There should be a point in our lives where we tell God, “I can’t do this on my own”, and this should be the point when we ask for the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives. When we come to this realization, then we will be able to reach others and serve God more effectively. 

Difficult Questions

The Bible is an amazing book! It is God’s divine, written word to us. The Bible has the power to give life through the power of the gospel that covers its pages. The Bible is full of hope, able to penetrate to our very souls so that it can surgically excise our sinful character. The Bible is inerrant and is without contradictions. It is completely and absolutely true. There is no other book given to men that is as powerful. God is to be praised for giving us His word so that we can know Him more! 

While Scripture accomplishes these things—and even much more than I have listed—it is also full of statements, teachings, doctrines, and messages that are really difficult for us to hear. It seems hard to believe that one of the identifying marks of a believer is that we will suffer, just like our Master. It seems difficult to realize that Scripture calls a believer to live a countercultural life while here on this earth. The very things that are totally acceptable and even popular within a culture are rejected by Scripture. While I totally believe Scripture, these hard truths often collide with our society and now leave us as believers with some difficult questions that we need answered. 

Even though we have difficult questions that we desire answers to, we can rest assured that the same Scripture that declares these hard truths also gives us the answers to these questions. Jesus longs for us to know Him and to know the answers, and we can get them directly from Him. To help our church find these answers to these difficult questions, I am going to lead a 4-week study on answering these difficult questions directly from Scripture.

We will begin on Sunday, July 30th at 10am in the Sanctuary. But before we get there, I’m asking you to submit a difficult question you’d like to discuss. You can submit them by emailing me, filling out a Connect Card, or put your question on the index card and place it into the box in the foyer. I’m trusting that this will be a great discussion and blessed time. Life is difficult. Faith can seem difficult. Let’s turn together to God’s Word and see these difficulties dealt with by Jesus Himself.