Series Preview: The Real Jesus


By Chris Denning

Have you ever played a game of Telephone? It’s where someone starts with a phrase, then whispers it to the next person in line, who whispers it to the next person, and so on. Once the phrase travels through the line, the last person says aloud what they believe the phrase is to see how close they got. It’s usually not even close to the original.

Somewhere along the way, someone heard the wrong thing, misunderstood someone or communicated something that simply wasn’t true. There’s not much consequence for botching a game of Telephone, but this can be dangerous within the context of our faith.

Whether we want to admit it or not, we all let our biases color and shade our understanding of things, including our understanding of Jesus. Our preconceptions about who we think he is and our connotations that pop up when we hear about who He is will bend and shift our understanding of who He truly is.

In our new series, The Real Jesus, we want to take the time to look in the Bible to better understand who Jesus is, directly from our primary source. Our hope is that by better understanding the truth about Jesus’ life, personality, and values, we won’t just have a better perspective of Him, but we’ll be led to a deeper experience of the power and life Jesus provides.

Our faith is founded on a real person and on a real event that changed everything. This Sunday, we get the opportunity to not only kick off this series, but to CELEBRATE the fact that our God has overcome the grave! Easter is an opportunity to be reminded of the price Jesus paid for us, but also to be reminded of the great power of our risen King!

I believe that the more we dig in to understand the real Jesus, the more we will be captivated by His grace. The more we will be in awe of His sacrifice and love. The more we will be changed to be more like Him.

This weekend, and this whole series, is all about the ABSOLUTE HOPE we find in the very real person of Jesus. I hope you’ll join us and use the shareable we’ve created to invite every single person Jesus puts in your path this week to join you at Journey this Sunday.

Every single person matters to Jesus, so let’s not waste any opportunity to invite others to experience the absolute Hope we have in Jesus! See you Sunday at 9 or 11am to celebrate Easter together!

Weekend Preview | 5 Things I Wish Jesus Never Said: Part 5- EASTER

By Matt Dawson

This Sunday is EASTER! I hope you are looking forward to joining us as we humbly point everyone to absolute Hope!


Hope is a special topic for me this time of year. As we think about “good Friday” today, it’s only good because we know that the cross was the path to resurrection and life!

However, it was not a GOOD Friday at all for the disciples and those who witnessed Jesus’s death.

Every year, I make it a habit on Friday and Saturday (before Easter) to try and remember the hopelessness that filled Peter, James, John, and all those who loved Jesus. To watch their friend be brutally killed and placed in a grave. To feel that all was lost, all was over. That the last 3 years were going to end in tragedy and all they hoped would be accomplished through Jesus ended in a tomb.

Hopeless. There’s no better word to describe it.

It also helps me understand that this is the feeling and the foundation of everyone who doesn’t know Jesus TODAY. Those on my Top 5, those I meet in the community that are filing their lives with every measure of joy they can purchase and negotiate, yet when it’s all stripped away remain hopeless. Hopelessness is a sobering reality for those who are not walking closely with Jesus.

This Sunday, we won’t just celebrate Easter with chocolates and egg hunts. We will celebrate THE EVENT that our entire faith is founded on. The Resurrection! The time that HOPE in its fullness was delivered once and for all. That Jesus himself would MAKE A WAY for us to have peace with God and a relationship with Him!

Join us Sunday as we conclude our series, 5 Things I Wish Jesus Never Said, with the statement “I Am The Way!”

I’m so happy that Jesus made a way for us to experience the HOPE we have in Him!

It’s Easter… Invite your friends!

By Don Gentry

Easter is just around the corner!! It is my most favorite Holy day of the year! Every day is a celebration of Christ as a Christ follower, but on this particular day we set aside a special time to celebrate our Savior’s resurrection. If it weren’t for Christ’s resurrection, then we would never celebrate His birth. If he hadn’t risen from the dead on His own power, then his birth wouldn’t have been any more special than any other man’s.

The importance of Christ’s resurrection offers us an incredible opportunity to invite our friends to join us. Who doesn’t like to invite a friend to come with them to a big celebration? Very few people have never heard of Easter- even my Atheist, agnostic friends know about Easter.

Here are some helpful tips to motivate you to invite your friends and neighbors to come to church with you on Easter Sunday!

  1. It is a celebration! People feel welcome at celebrations! Invite them to join you in the biggest celebration of your faith.
  2. Ask them face to face. It is much harder to reject someone when they are looking at you.
  3. Post THESE GRAPHICS via social media and help us get the word out!
  4. Don’t be afraid of someone saying no. They may have other plans. The worst anyone can say to you is, “I can’t make it.”
  5. Don’t wait until Saturday night, people make plans!
  6. Invite them out for lunch afterwards, keep the celebration going!
  7. Be prepared to go to both services, so that if they do show up you can sit with them, even if you already listened to Matt preach the first service! ☺
  8. Just do it! Jesus paid the ultimate price for us. The least we can do is set aside a special day to celebrate the freedom and victory that He has given us!
  9. Stop making excuses for others. Maybe they are just waiting for someone to invite them to church. You never know until you try!
  10. Easter is a great day to humbly point your friends and neighbors to absolute hope.

Obviously, whether you invite anyone to Church with you is up to you, but Easter really is an easy day to invite others to join you. We have created the invite, the graphic, and have an awesome church so you can feel confident in inviting others. The only thing we can’t do for you is invite the people for you. We are counting on you to help us humbly point everyone to absolute hope!

See you soon!

Weekend Preview | It Is: Part 3 – It Is Finished

By Chris Denning

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In case you aren’t aware of it, this weekend is Easter.  I know, its nuts that it’s April already.

Easter is a big deal in the church, and you might be curious why.  I mean, I understand the “big deal-ness” of it theologically and personally, but why is Easter a time where people feel drawn to the Church?

Honestly, I think the answer is simple: Easter is a time of great hope.

The story of Easter is filled with great sorrow, pain and agony, yet people are still drawn to it.  Even with the graphic brutality that is native to Jesus’ journey from the Garden to Calvary, we want to hear the whole story.

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3 Ways YOU Should Prepare for Easter at Journey

By Matt Dawson

As we approach this coming weekend, many are looking forward to Easter morning at Journey.  Some are just looking forward to the break from school, or a vacation that is coming up.  Others are not really looking at this weekend any differently than any other weekend – let’s just be honest about that.

I want us to really begin to prepare ourselves for an incredible weekend together at Journey Church.  As we approach this special Sunday (a Sunday set apart to celebrate AN EVENT that is the Cornerstone of our faith!), I want us to do the following over the next 4 days together . . .

1. Get Your Heart & Mind Ready

We are so busy and living such margin-less lives, if we’re not careful, this celebration can slip right past us.  Begin to pray today and over the next several days about what God wants to say to you this year at Easter.

If you’re carrying around a heavy burden of stress, or anger, or just frustration in life – give that to God and ask Him for peace.  If you’re struggling for purpose and direction in your life – ask God to reveal HOPE to you.  Don’t allow this amazing weekend that we celebrate the gift of LOVE that Jesus gave us by His death and resurrection to PASS YOU BY without intentionally preparing your hearts and minds for it.

2. Invite/Re-Invite your TOP 5

Have you made your top 5 list yet?  If not, do it today!  

Who are the people God has placed in your circle of influence (co-workers, neighbors, friends, family, people in your network group) that He wants you to invite?  Statistics show time and time again, that so many more people are open to visiting a church (with someone they already KNOW) on Easter and Christmas more than any other time of year.  Don’t let this opportunity pass you by!

If you’ve already made that invitation and they have not committed – DO IT ONE MORE TIME!  You re-inviting them may be the thing that changes the course of their lives as they know it.  Never underestimate what God can do through a simple invitation!

3. Engage/Love OTHERS on Sunday

It’s easy to come to church and enjoy the service we have planned for you.  It’s going to be a powerful day!  But it’s also a day that our house will be filled with many, many guests.  Folks that are looking for a place to belong, looking for a friendly face, looking for HOPE.

Easter is a Sunday that we can all do better and engaging and expressing LOVE to people we don’t know.  To see that person in the lobby (get out of our comfort zone and conversation with close friends) and speak to them.  People are 10x more likely to come back to a church where they feel welcomed (and not judged) and loved.

We don’t want to just be glad they decided to come and join us for Easter services, we want to make sure they know THAT WE EXIST TO HUMBLY POINT EVERYONE TO ABSOLUTE HOPE!

Take advantage of this week, and put all 3 of these things into practice from now through Sunday morning.  I promise, you will never regret getting your heart & mind ready, inviting those in your circle to join you on Sunday, and loving others (those you don’t know) when they decide to come and join us!  It may just be the BEST SUNDAY you’ve had in a long time.

I’m looking forward to seeing each and every one of you this weekend!

Weekend Preview | It Is: Part 2 – It Is Here

By Matt Dawson

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At Journey, our goal is to see every one of your friend’s stories changed by absolute Hope!

WHO?  Your friends, the people in your circle, the folks you are connected to.  Your family, your friends, your acquaintances, your co-workers, your network group, your neighbors, your kid’s friends parents, your clients, everyone!  We know who they are, we know their names, many of whom we know the complexity of their story, but sometimes thinking about reaching and pointing all of them to hope feels a bit overwhelming.

So, let me ask you a different question: Who are your TOP 5?

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