Letting Angels' Awe Guide Us

December 25, 2014 | by: Dale Thiele | 0 Comments

You’ve heard it all before, haven’t you? The Christmas story... the baby in a manger, shepherds keeping watch over their flocks, angels singing, wise men traveling from the east, etc. The danger of familiarity is losing our sense of awe over the significance of such events. Let’s let the angels reinvigorate our sense of wonder and awe for the birth of Christ, the Lord.... Keep Reading

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Pastoral Encouragement

Happy Birthday, Jesus?

December 18, 2014 | by: Dale Thiele | 0 Comments

Many Christians, especially with children, like to sing Happy Birthday to Jesus on Christmas. This practice helps teach our young ones (and even us older ones) that Christmas is about Jesus. I like to ask my kids, then, why do we get gifts on Jesus' birthday. This gives us the opportunity to talk about the "immeasurable riches of God's grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus" (Eph. 2:7). We give and receive gifts as a reflection (imitation) of our abundantly kind Heavenly Father. Now, did you know there is a risk in singing Happy Birthday to Jesus on Christmas?... Keep Reading

Actually Sharing Our Faith

December 11, 2014 | by: Dale Thiele | 0 Comments

This past Sunday evening we gathered as a church family for a fellowship meal and to finish our discussion about Mack Stiles' book, Evangelism: How the Whole Church Speaks of Jesus. I want to use this space to briefly focus on Stiles' fifth and final chapter and provide some practical take-aways on the topic of evangelism.... Keep Reading

Our focus at Oak Hills this Advent is on the second coming of Christ. Every New Testament writer mentions the second coming as a central hope that shapes every Christian and church, so much that Paul describes Christians as those "who have loved his appearing"(2 Tim. 4:8). The challenge for us is that while we celebrate the birth of Christ, can we be described as people loving and looking to and waiting for the coming of Christ?... Keep Reading

Advent: A Season of Preparation

November 27, 2014 | by: Dale Thiele | 0 Comments

When we think of Advent we naturally think of the birth of Christ. Historically, though, the attention of the Church during Advent has been on the second coming of Christ. By learning from the Old Testament longing for the coming of Messiah, the Church grows in its longing for the second coming. If we looked closely at the New Testament we would find that the early church was marked by a "looking" for the second coming of Christ. Paul describes Christians as those "who have loved his appearing" (2 Tim. 4:8). Can we be described in this way?... Keep Reading

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Pastoral Encouragement

Rebranding the Church

November 20, 2014 | by: Dale Thiele | 0 Comments

Oak Hills will be incorporating a new look over the next weeks and months. It starts with a new name image, a logo, if you will. It will spread into a new website, a new bulletin look, and other print material. At the end of the day, a logo does not define us, but we do hope to communicate a bit about who we are.... Keep Reading

Marked by Thanksgiving

November 13, 2014 | by: Dale Thiele | 0 Comments

Many of us are familiar with the history of the Thanksgiving holiday in America. We think of the Pilgrims and the various challenges they faced in coming to the New World. We know of the Native Americans who came alongside of those early settlers and helped with cultivating life-sustaining practices. The stories tell us that, after one year in the ... Keep Reading

What Perfects You?

November 6, 2014 | by: Dale Thiele | 0 Comments

I am serving in Haiti this week, teaching a group of Haitian pastors about how all of Scripture centers on and proclaims the gospel. As I was preparing to teach this week I had the opportunity to speak with a missionary with the Northwest Haiti Christian Mission about these pastors. He mentioned that one of the biggest challenges these pastors face is syncretism.... Keep Reading

Reformation Day 2014

October 30, 2014 | by: Dale Thiele | 0 Comments

A couple of weeks ago we sang as a congregation the hymn "A Mighty Fortress is Our God." This hymn was first penned by the Reformer, Martin Luther, in 1529. While I love this hymn, growing up I always found it odd to be singing about Satan.... Keep Reading

What Does It Mean To Take Up Your Cross?

October 23, 2014 | by: Dale Thiele | 0 Comments

When we hear Jesus' words in Mark 8:34, "If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me," most of us think of Jesus' cross and the significance of his death. In our minds taking up our cross must parallel Christ's death on the cross in some way.... Keep Reading

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