Tuesday, December 29, 2009

New Series: Just Ask

Organizations mature as they evaluate the effectiveness of their strategy and mission. By examining where they currently are and where they intend to go, churches can gauge whether they have stayed the course or strayed from their original dreams.

How is your church doing?

And how are you participating in what God is doing in your church?

Find the answers to these questions as Andy Stanley presents the two-part series, Just Ask, beginning Sunday, January 3, at Access Church.

See you there!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

Here's a sample of our Not-So-Silent Night. Thanks for inviting so many of your family, friends, and co-workers.

And thanks to all the great volunteers who made 2009 an outstanding year. See you in January!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

2009 is in The Bag!

Not-So-Silent Night was incredible. Thank you for leveraging your influence with family and friends and inviting them to be a part of what God is doing through Access Church!

Years from now, tonight will be one of those nights we look back on as a pivotal event in the life of this organization.

To all of our amazing volunteers who made Access Church the best church I could possibly be a part of in 2009 -- THANK YOU! Have a Merry Christmas. I look forward to serving with you in 2010.

Remember, there will be NO SERVICE this Sunday. We're giving our volunteers and staff the week off. See you January 3 for the start of a new series, "Just Ask."

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Little Drummer Boy

If you wonder how we celebrate Christmas at Access Church, here's a little taste.

And if you've not yet made plans to be at Not-So-Silent Night tomorrow night... Figure it out! We're going to start promptly at 7:00pm, and you will be so, so sad if you arrive even one minute late.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Praying Big?

I just intercepted this email from Stephanie as she was sending it to some friends:
Rich just told me Accessibles have invited 1,670 people to Not-So-Silent Night on Facebook alone! Accessibles blew the doors off the challenge to invite (just) 1,000. A.MAZ.ING. Happy Birthday, Jesus!

Now, we wait to see what God will do, and pray BIG--for the "greater things still to be done in this city." Will you take a minute or two when you are done reading this and ask God to do "above and beyond what we could ask or think" on Wednesday night? Not in the numbers , but in the heart of every person that comes? Please ask His favor over all the details/production/environments. Pray that we as a church would be prepared for what God will do. And, that above all, He would be delighted in and glorified by everything that happens.

Thank you for joining me in praying--an essential part of leading people in a growing relationship with Jesus Christ. I can't wait to see what He will do!
Will you join us in praying for Wednesday night? We are so thrilled that those who attend Access are so excited about the way we do church that you are willing to invite so many others to experience it as well.

What might God do in the hearts of those we love this Christmas?

Doing Life... Together.

Some of us are already reflecting on 2009 and thinking about changes we'd like to make for 2010.

If you aren't meeting weekly with a group of of people who encourage you and challenge you, why not make that a key priority for 2010? Few things could improve your quality of life more.

Michael & Zoie Morales, Brad & Sherri Law, Ryan & Tina Dollar, Jeff & Ashley Hilley, and John & Christi Munns made that decision last spring, and it's been so cool to see their group develop. In fact, when Jeff was recently deployed to Guantanamo Bay, the group kept right on meeting--with Jeff on Skype! Each week Jeff joins the group via video chat, and participates in the entire discussion, live.

The same group has a men's bible study every morning--via email. They each read the same few verses, then journal their thoughts and email them to each other. This allows everyone to participate regardless of schedule or location.

So, this is not your mama's bible study group! These are real people juggling real-life responsibilities, but they have learned that being part of a group of others who are encouraging them along the way makes a huge difference.

Join a group at GroupLink, next held on January 17. Click here to register today!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Not-So-Silent Night

Join us December 23, at 7:00pm, for a community Christmas celebration at the University of North Florida.

Childcare is provided for children aged six-weeks to five-years-old. Elementary-aged children are welcome to join us in the 45-minute service.

Andy Stanley will be sharing, "The Christmas Story," and we invite you to stay after the service for hot chocolate and cookies.

Click here to sample our Christmas music.

You might want to send a friend a link to EverybodysInvited.com.

After Party
Middle- and high-school student and their families are invited to stick around for a 30-minute, VIP-style after party with free food, music, and games.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

North Point Live: Awake

North Point Music released a new CD today on iTunes. Featuring North Point (and Access Church) worship leaders like Todd Fields, Eddie Kirkland, and Steve Fee, you want to pick this up right away! In fact, I'm listening to it right now.

If you're a bit old fashioned and like to hold the shiny disc in your hand, the CD will be available at the Access Church Resource Center this Sunday.

The album includes many of the favorites we've been singing for the last six months at Access, including, "Rise & Sing," "It is Well," "God is Alive," "Glory to God Forever," and "No One Higher/The Stand."

Umm, you're gonna love it! It makes a great Christmas gift, as well.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

What's the Worst?

What's the worst thing someone might say about your church?

Recently, a few people were overheard in conversation about our church. Several positive things were said. One person, however, threw out this objection, "I mean, they even have, like, atheists going there!"

So what do you think? Is that a bad thing? What would you think about a church if you heard that at a party? What's the worst thing someone might say about your church?

Friday, December 11, 2009

Be Rich: Shalom Church

Since Access' earliest days, we have felt passionate about and had the privilege of helping to plant Shalom Church in Merida, Mexico (located on the Yucatan Peninsula). It is home to approximately 800,000 people and is the largest city in the Yucatan.

Shalom Church has successful ministries for children, youth, and singles. They have been growing in all of these areas, but most importantly, they have many stories of life change among people who have come into the church.

Since 2007, Access Church has given financially to support Shalom Church. Over the next year, we plan to send a team of people to Mexico to meet with the leadership and people of Shalom Church, build our relationship with them, and serve them through training in the areas of UpStreet, Waumba Land, and worship.

We want to support this globalX partnership through our Be Rich campaign, which is helping us "to be rich in good deeds." This Sunday, mark your gift, "Shalom Church" and we'll see that it goes directly to this organization and the city they reach.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Thankful for You

As our staff has looked back on 2009 and all that God has done, I couldn't help but share recently at Access Church some of the successes of the past year and the challenge that's ahead of us.

Please take a moment and listen to this four-minute message.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Be Rich: Toms Shoes

A few months ago, Andy Stanley challenged us to think about how we would act toward others if we suddenly discovered that we were really, really rich.

He then helped us realize that we are rich. And, as rich people, we need to learn how to be rich. Consequently, we've launched a campaign for this holiday season called, "BE RICH. do more. give more."

One great way that you can be a part is through an organization that our UpStreet students have already partnered with: Toms Shoes.

Most children in developing countries grow up barefoot. Walking is often their primary mode of transportation. Children walk for miles to get food, water, shelter, and medical help.

Children often have cuts and sores from unsafe roads and contaminated soil. Not only are these injuries painful, they are dangerous when the wounds become infected. The leading cause of disease in developing countries is soil-transmitted parasites, which penetrate the skin through open sores.

Many times children can’t attend school because shoes are a required part of their uniform. If they don’t receive an education, they don’t have the opportunity to realize their potential.

To solve these problems, Toms Shoes distributes shoes to children in developing countries. We think this is simply fantastic, and our UpStreet kids have already raised several hundred dollars to show Christ's love to their counterparts around the world. Will you join them?

This Sunday, mark your gift, "Toms Shoes" and we'll see that it goes directly to this organization and the children they provide for.

Friday, December 04, 2009

December Financial Update

When we launched in March 2007, Access Church was supported only by eight local families with a vision and a generous loan from North Point Ministries. It was a risk, but we believed that Jacksonville needed a church for everybody. Less than three years later, 80 more families and singles have joined us finanically to help accomplish this vision.

Thank you!

As we near the end of 2009, you may wish to give to Access Church for the first time, or give an extra amount to help us finish the year strong. Here are three ways you can ensure you donation will be eligible as a 2009 charitable deduction:

Sunday Offering
Make a donation through the Sunday offering. Please keep in mind that the last Sunday worship service for this year will be December 20. There will be no service on December 27. All contributions received in the offering on January 3, 2010, even if dated 2009, will apply to tax year 2010.

Mail your donation or drop it off at our office. Please note that the IRS requires that checks mailed to Access Church must be dated and postmarked on or before December 31, 2009 for them to apply to tax year 2009.

Access Church - Bldg 200, Ste 250
10151 Deerwood Park Blvd.
Jacksonville, FL 32256

Online at AccessChurch.org
Give online through our web site. This is an easy and consistent way to make donations to our church. We have had an overwhelmingly positive experience with this service. Please note that all online giving must be submitted on or before December 30, 2009 to apply to tax year 2009.

Click Here To Give

We are so thankful God has allowed us to partner with you in creating Access Church! We can not create irresistible environments each and every Sunday without your continued support. Below is the most recent financial snapshot, which is always available on our web site. We're very excited about what God has in store for 2010. Thank you for being an integral part of this success!

January - November 2009
YTD Actual Income $311,092
YTD Budgeted Income $327,027

YTD Actual Expenses $374,288
YTD Budgeted Expenses $429,837