Final Southside Christian School Chapels, 02 May 2019

On Thursday, May 2, 2019, the students of Southside Christian School gathered for their final chapels of the 2018-2019 school year. Middle School Bible Teacher Missy Schrader spoke to the middle school students. SCS Alumnus Clay Anderson, ‘17, spoke to the high school students. If you would like to read my summary of the chapel activities, please read on. . . .

Summary of and Editorializing by Dr. Bob Stouffer, Upper School Principal (All errors are mine alone.)

Middle School Bible Teacher Missy Schrader welcomed everyone to the Middle School Chapel. (The eighth graders were on the Williamsburg trip.) She asked students to tell each other what month it is and what would be happening in 28 days (the last day of school).

Mrs. Schrader indicated that this day was the National Day of Prayer. She indicated that her daughter had sung at the National Day of Prayer of activities in Washington, D.C. several years ago.

Mrs. Schrader prayed to open the chapel.

High School Bible Teacher Ryan Donell (vocalist and guitarist) led a period of worship through song.

Mr. Donell prayed as a bridge between a time of worship through song to a time of worship through consideration of God’s Word.

Mrs. Schrader thanked Mr. Donell, indicating we could have easily have closed the chapel with those worship songs.

“A Prayer of Celebration”

By Missy Schrader, Middle School Bible Teacher

Southside Christian School

Simpsonville, South Carolina

Thursday, May 2, 2019

What special events are ending your year, and how are you celebrating?

Soccer

Youth group retreat

Awards ceremonies

In the Bible, as things ended, celebrations marked those events. Before Moses and Joshua died, they reminded the people to keep following hard after God, celebrating God’s goodness.

Jesus gave a farewell speech. He told the disciples they would have hardship, but that He has overcome the world.

This is the last chapel. This is a farewell chapel. I thought I’d read a prayer for you today. We’re going to “eat” this passage. You can do this on your own. Read any passage and eat it!

This is a passage from Colossians 1:9-14.

9 And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him: bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy; 12 giving thanks[a] to the Father, who has qualified you[b] to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. 13 He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. (English Standard Version)

Footnotes:

[a] Colossians 1:12 Or patience, with joy giving thanks

[b] Colossians 1:12 Some manuscripts us

We are looking at this passage, because this is our farewell chapel and the National Day of Prayer. We pray this passage over you.

When you think of God’s will, we often think of what?

Student: “God’s plan.”

We look for God’s will for choice of schools and summer activities. But we should be thinking more about who God is. His will for us is to be holy. He wants us to be joyful. He wants us to never stop praying. He wants us to understand His truth and be a shining light for Him. His will for you and me is to be like Him. We must pray that God will give complete knowledge of His will.

Let’s keep going. We should also pray for spiritual wisdom and understanding. Where do we get wisdom? The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. Wisdom is knowing and understanding and doing with what we know. We can see wisdom in other people’s lives. Wisdom should show in our lives. How do we grow in understanding? We must spend time in God’s Word. Can you do this for me? Can I do this for you? No.

Let’s go back to the first point. We want complete knowledge of His will. And we seek wisdom and understanding. Then, we pray for honoring and pleasing the Lord. We lead a life worth of our calling. If I am wearing a t-shirt with Southside Christian School at a grocery store, and I yell at someone, what will others think of Southside Christian? They would say we are all grouchy. Do we live in ways that are worthy of God’s calling on our lives?

We pray for knowledge of God’s will, wisdom, understanding, and the ability to honor and please the Lord. I don’t do that to have God love me more. He already loves me. But I must honor him. As a result, our lives will produce good fruit. We know the health of a tree by the leaves and the fruit. Spiritual fruit we bear is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control.

You can’t produce that fruit on your own. These are fruit of the Spirit. We spend time with Jesus and His Word. We live in a way that pleases Him. Fruit is produced. And we grow and learn, knowing God better and better. Have I arrived? No. Not until heaven. We are all on this journey. We are all growing. We grow as we learn to know God better and better. Best friends spend time together. When we have a relationship with our Heavenly Father, we learn to know God better and better.

We pray for knowledge of God’s will, wisdom, understanding, the ability to honor and please the Lord, producing good fruit, growing and learning to know God better. We also pray that we will be strengthened with God’s glorious power. The bad news is I can’t do this on my own. The good news is that Jesus’ glorious power is in me when I have the Holy Spirit in me. I need strength when I’m weak. On our own, we are weak. But Paul wrote that God’s power is made perfect in our weakness. His power fills us with His strength.

We need the endurance and patience with difficult people and circumstances. We can endure those hard things. We will be filled with joy, even when things are hard. We always thank the Father. Why are we thankful? He has enabled us to share in the inheritance that belongs to His people. We are His children. That is a reason to be thankful.

He has rescued us from the kingdom of darkness and transferred us into the Kingdom of light with Jesus. A person who is lost or is in danger needs to be rescued. Jesus rescued us from darkness and sin. He transfers us to the Kingdom of light. He purchased our freedom and forgave our sins. The payment was the life of His Son.

That is the best prayer ever. I’m going to pray that prayer again over you. It’s the National Day of Prayer. This is a farewell prayer for you.

[Mrs. Schrader prayed those same concepts over the sixth and seventh grade students.]

9 And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him: bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy; 12 giving thanks[a] to the Father, who has qualified you[b] to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. 13 He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. (English Standard Version)

At the beginning of the High School Chapel, High School French Teacher Brett Henderson (on electric guitar and vocals), Upper School Vocal Music Instructor Fred Barrett (on keyboard and vocals), Senior Coby Greene (on drums), and Executive SGA Chaplain Mary Elizabeth Baumgarten (on acoustical guitar and vocals) led the high school students in a time of worship through song.

Mary Elizabeth prayed a prayer as a bridge between worship of the Lord through song to worship of the Lord through the preaching and the hearing of God’s Word.

Up! Up! To the Kingdom of God on Earth As It Is in Heaven!”

By Clay Anderson, Southside Christian School Class of 2017

For those of you who don’t know me, I’m Clay Anderson. I graduated from Southside Christian a couple years ago.

Yesterday, I took my last exam of the year [at Clemson], and I’m halfway through my college career!

How many of you are going to Clemson?

How many of are going to USC? That’s good. We’re talking about salvation today.

Yes, Delaney [Dowling, SCS ‘17] and I are still dating.

I have one more statement [off-topic]. if you want to be a Clemson tour guide, I’m in charge of those people, so get your application in, and let me know.

Pastor Colin has asked me to speak about the topic of the Spirit’s role in renewal in our lives.

When our relationship with Him is renewed, we experience renewal of our relationships with others.

What is the ultimate end and God’s plan for renewal?

I want to talk to you about the New Jerusalem.

We’ll be in Zechariah 2. This is an incredible place of the Scriptures. I want you to be excited for this truth. I’m not hyping heaven so you can punch your ticket to heaven. That’s not the point of the Bible. This is a beautiful story of perfect relationship. It’s not about a free ride to heaven. This is not a goal we’re shooting for. We should seek for relationship with God and our brothers and sisters.

Zechariah 2

2 [a] And I lifted my eyes and saw, and behold, a man with a measuring line in his hand! 2 Then I said, “Where are you going?” And he said to me, “To measure Jerusalem, to see what is its width and what is its length.” 3 And behold, the angel who talked with me came forward, and another angel came forward to meet him 4 and said to him, “Run, say to that young man, ‘Jerusalem shall be inhabited as villages without walls, because of the multitude of people and livestock in it. 5 And I will be to her a wall of fire all around, declares the Lord, and I will be the glory in her midst.’”

6 Up! Up! Flee from the land of the north, declares the Lord. For I have spread you abroad as the four winds of the heavens, declares the Lord. 7 Up! Escape to Zion, you who dwell with the daughter of Babylon. 8 For thus said the Lord of hosts, after his glory sent me[b] to the nations who plundered you, for he who touches you touches the apple of his eye: 9 “Behold, I will shake my hand over them, and they shall become plunder for those who served them. Then you will know that the Lord of hosts has sent me. 10 Sing and rejoice, O daughter of Zion, for behold, I come and I will dwell in your midst, declares the Lord. 11 And many nations shall join themselves to the Lord in that day, and shall be my people. And I will dwell in your midst, and you shall know that the Lord of hosts has sent me to you. 12 And the Lord will inherit Judah as his portion in the holy land, and will again choose Jerusalem.” 13 Be silent, all flesh, before the Lord, for he has roused himself from his holy dwelling. (English Standard Version)

Footnotes:

[a] Zechariah 2:1 Ch 2:5 in Hebrew

[b] Zechariah 2:8 Or he sent me after glory

WIll you guys pray with me?

[Clay prayed for the chapel message, for courage and clarity.]

So what does this City of God — the New Jerusalem — heaven on earth — look like?

How big is it? The angels say it is fruitless to measure it. There is imperial might. The huge city is filled with families and people. You can’t contain it or measure it. God has gathered His people to Himself. You will likely see people you know, and you may be surprised by those you didn’t anticipate being there. This is a village without walls. On earth, villages without walls were not safe. But, in heaven, his wall of fire and presence, make everyone safe. Nothing — no death, fear, or anything else can separate us from Christ Jesus.

It’s important for us to remember Jesus as Prophet, Priest, and King. Here is King Jesus Christ! You are safe and secure with this King! We are the apple of His eye. Anyone who messes with us is messing with the King of kings.

Who will be in the city? In verse 11, it’s clear. Many nations will join with God’s people. It’s always been God’s plan to draw every tribe, tongue, and nation to Himself. He loves doing that. The invitation is extended to all. You cannot box someone out of the Kingdom of God. You are wrong if you think that. Christ tears down walls. Heaven is not just for you, your family, your church, your skin color, or anything else. Christ brings all people unto Himself.

What is the relationship like? How are they relating to each other? Is it a big church service or party? It’s a family in God’s city. We see family culture — brothers and sisters in Christ. They’re worshipping God. They’re feasting. That sounds like a good time to me. Relationship is the primary purpose of redemption. This is a place with the promise of hope. God is dwelling in these people’s midst. We will see and commune with God. Throughout history, we have been unable to do so. One day, we will dwell with God.

It IS coming. This WILL happen. God has never broken a promise. All of the prophets and Psalmists offered promises, and all have been fulfilled. Listen again to verse 13. This verse is “Aslan being on the move.” Do not doubt. Even in the seasons of anxiety, depression, physical injury, and broken relationships, we can claim this truth. You will one day be with God. Our final renewal is coming closer every day.

So what’s the point? If God renews broken people and broken relationships, what should we do today, this summer, next year? Live like the city is coming, because it is. Live like that today. Live like that with your brothers and sisters at home, in your classes, on your teams. We would never dream of saying or doing things against God when we claim this truth of seeking renewed relationship today.

Let’s get practical here. Get plugged-into the church. The church is the only place you can practice relationship for eternity. You seniors will go off to college, and some people will forget everything they have learned. Find a church where people will constantly remind you of perfect relationship. You may not think church is the place for you, or you have had problems in a previous church. This church is heaven is going to be an amazing church. But find out how you can be involved with God’s body now.

Ask questions. This city of God is still mysterious to us today. We don’t know what it’s like. Talk about it at lunch. Talk to your teachers about how to experience renewed relationships today. They care about you.

Thank you for listening.

Let me wrap up by praying. . . .

[Clay prayed to close the chapel.]

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