How to move a Mountain – Part Three

Posted November 15, 2006 by toddbrooks
Categories: Uncategorized

mount3.jpgLast time we saw that we are to move our mountain with confidence and joy. I have, even in the last week found that keeping this answer in mind has helped me to remember that God is God and I am not. When I begin to cast myself as “god” I am stepping into idolatry. And from that position I am ill equipped to experience confidence and joy.

In verse 9 we find the next answer:

9″The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this house; his hands shall also complete it. Then you will know that the LORD of hosts has sent me to you

Q: How do you move a Mountain?
Answer 3: Through human hands… in such a way that it will be obvious that man has not done it apart from God.

In this answer we have a double opportunity. First we find that it is God’s desire that he will use real live people. While it would seem that God could just step in and accomplish what he wants, he instead gives his people the opportunity to participate in whatever it is that He is doing. God gives scandalously high levels of dignity to his people by letting them work with their own hands in his great work but he does not stop there. Second, he uses people in such a way that it is made clear that it was God himself who was behind what a person does: “Then you will know that the LORD of hosts has sent me to you.”

So God uses people in such a way that they will be infused with dignity and significance, while at the same time preserving and even enhancing His own glory.

As God really uses the people of Immanuel to build His Church and extend the gospel, we can be very confident (not to mention joyful) that He is going to use us in such a way that it will be crystal clear that it is our Lord who is the one who has been at work all along.

Next time we will explore the last answer. Until then let our hands be in His work.

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How to move a Mountain – Part Two

Posted November 10, 2006 by toddbrooks
Categories: Uncategorized

mount-2.jpgIn my Previous post I looked at how the endeavor of “moving the mountain” is a work of God Himself, and specifically His Spirit. In the passage we find the imagery of two large olive trees constantly providing the pure oil through golden pipes to provide all the resources (fuel for a lampstand) that are needed.

I have never personally seen self-pressing olive trees “automatically” providing for the needs of the people of God. But I do appreciate the imagery. There have been countless times already in the brief history of Immanuel that God has provided for our needs before I was even aware that we had them.

In the immediate context of the passage the two are the Priest and the King, both of who are provided by God. In our context we have the perfect King and Priest as our leader and shepherd. His name is Jesus, and he is not unaware of the challenges his people face. And he will accomplish his perfect will, “Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the LORD of hosts.”

In verses 7 I find, what is to me a shocking statement and in this statement we find the second answer to the question “How do you move a Mountain?”

7Who are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain. And he shall bring forward the top stone amid shouts of “Grace, grace to it!”

In this verse, God is speaking to the mountain and asking to it, “who do you think you are?” God declares that before this man of God’s choosing the mountain will indeed become a plain. So in this address by God to the problem of the day, we find the second answer.

Q: How do you move a Mountain?
Answer 2: With Confidence and Joy before a mighty God.

I hope that you can feel both the comfort and hilarity of this answer. It is shocking to think of God addressing our barriers the way that he addresses this mountain. “Who are you, oh problems to stand be for the People of God at Immanuel?” is not simply a trash talking question. It is the declaration of God accomplishing his purposes. Is this a promise of success? Only to the extent that our definition of success is congruent with the will of God. I take great comfort in this, and in the second part, which is that it will be met with shouts of “Grace, grace to it.” This is a shout of joy. This does not mean it will not be hard. It does not mean we will not have heartache. But it does promise that his joy will eclipse all other things.

Next time I will present you with answer number three. Until then…
Go forward with Confidence and Joy,

How to move a Mountain

Posted October 27, 2006 by toddbrooks
Categories: Uncategorized

f2f52ed7-48c8-4ced-911b-ef0f221d77a0.jpgAt a recent pastors conference I attended, one of the teachers took the group of us into the book of Zechariah and showed us the answer to the question—“How do you move a mountain?”

Zechariah 4 (ESV)
1And the angel who talked with me came again and woke me, like a man who is awakened out of his sleep. 2And he said to me, “What do you see?” I said, “I see, and behold, a lampstand all of gold, with a bowl on the top of it, and seven lamps on it, with seven lips on each of the lamps that are on the top of it. 3And there are two olive trees by it, one on the right of the bowl and the other on its left.” 4And I said to the angel who talked with me, “What are these, my lord?” 5Then the angel who talked with me answered and said to me, “Do you not know what these are?” I said, “No, my lord.” 6Then he said to me, “This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the LORD of hosts. 7Who are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain. And he shall bring forward the top stone amid shouts of ‘Grace, grace to it!'”

8 Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying, 9″The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this house; his hands shall also complete it. Then you will know that the LORD of hosts has sent me to you. 10For whoever has despised the day of small things shall rejoice, and shall see the plumb line in the hand of Zerubbabel.

“These seven are the eyes of the LORD, which range through the whole earth.” 11Then I said to him, “What are these two olive trees on the right and the left of the lampstand?” 12And a second time I answered and said to him, “What are these two branches of the olive trees, which are beside the two golden pipes from which the golden oil is poured out?” 13He said to me, “Do you not know what these are?” I said, “No, my lord.” 14Then he said, “These are the two anointed ones who stand by the Lord of the whole earth.”

The context of this passage is an exploration of the building of the temple. God speaks to show Zechariah that this difficult task is not beyond His control. God uses the analogy of “moving a mountain,” to show that He understands the difficulties of the task to which God has called him.

The lessons of the mountain can be applied to any difficult task to which the Lord calls his people. And certainly we will do well to learn the lessons of the mountain as we are confronted with the giant task (and limited resources,) we have in building Immanuel Evangelical Free Church.

In the passage God answers the question four different ways. The first answer to “How do you move a mountain?” is found in verse 6: “Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the LORD of hosts.”

In this answer He declares that it is in He, Himself that will “move the mountain.” The task ultimately and securely belongs to God. And he will not fail.

What’s in a Name?

Posted May 24, 2006 by toddbrooks
Categories: Introducing

After Much deliberation the launch team of the Carondelet Park Area Church Plant has arrived at the name of Immanuel Evangelical Free Church. We are excited about this name because the name Immanuel captures one of the most precious themes contained in the word of God.

Immanuel means “God is with us.”

…More to come…

Happy Easter

Posted April 17, 2006 by toddbrooks
Categories: Uncategorized


Easter eggs & creepy peeps

Originally uploaded by MBK.

Hello world!

Posted April 3, 2006 by toddbrooks
Categories: Introducing

Welcome to the new web presence of what is currently known as “The Carondelet Park Area Church Plant” (CPAC.) We are in search of our “real name” which should be finalized in the next few weeks. We are a ministry of Cornerstone Evangelical Free Church, which is located in Webster Groves, Missouri, with the help of the Central District of the EFCA.

Our mission is —
To multiply a worshiping community, on mission for Christ, into every neighborhood.

We have a heart for the City of St. Louis, and want to cooperate with others who care about the Spiritual, Cultural and Social good of the city. We are beginning our part of the mission by focusing on the five neighborhoods that surround Carondelet Park. While we plan to have some preview events sprinkled throughout the summer, we will begin our weekly worship services on Sunday, September 10.

I will lay out our vision for this new Church in the posts to come, and if this sounds like an opportunity you would like to know more about, please email me todd@cornerstonestaff.org.