Celebrate Together

Envisioning Haven Together

  This image communicates the vision Leah describes for Haven throughout the teaching.

This image communicates the vision Leah describes for Haven throughout the teaching.

"A vision has power...I think at certain points in our growing and maturing as people we need those fresh pictures that can resonate with us; they gel with what we've already come to know is true, but they help us see where it might take us forward...I’ve had a sense lately that Haven, as a community, is in a similar place of needing fresh vision to further grow and develop."

In this important teaching, Leah seeks to synthesize conversations that have been happening through Haven in recent months in regards to the vision for our community. The teaching revolves around a call she senses to live into the tension of three core values, represented by the Venn Diagram pictured above. Listen below or read Leah's notes, and see how she spells out the implications of these values, the tensions they present, and the invitation Jesus seems to be extending our community to live in the center of those tensions and find him there.

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Together With Kids

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"Jesus didn't have kids; [he was] not a dad. But he seemed very fond of them. He seemed to really be into kids and he seemed to continually try to center the attention of his followers on them; on what was going on with them. Why was that? If we're gonna think about what it means to do life together, it's important that we think about what is the role all of us play - not just the parents, but all of us... in the next generation of what God is doing."

This teaching takes a look at how God seems to be inviting his people to think about life together with kids, by taking a broad look at the advice on parenting, child-rearing, and relating to kids given throughout the Bible. In this teaching, Leah makes the case that these are questions that are not just relevant for parents, but for all who seek to live out Jesus-centered community.

Review Leah's notes or listen to the audio below.

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Together With Immigrants

Immigration Rally

What did Jesus mean when he encouraged his followers to "welcome the stranger"? How might that encouragement inform our own perspective on the welcome of vulnerable immigrants in our communities, particularly in a time when those immigrants are at heightened risk? As our guest preacher Pastor Tita Valeriano shares, "Hospitality is not just about opening our door and being nice until they leave our house. For Christ, it is truly more than that."

Listen below for more of Tita's words on Jesus' view of hospitality and the implications of "Celebrate Together" on our inclusion of immigrants.

Together with Our Neighbors

Bay Area Map

"How might our faith open up helpful connections with our neighbors? (Like…our literal neighbors. Or our coworkers. The people we shop next to at Berkeley Bowl….) How might Jesus be inviting us to think about the places we actually inhabit and our connections to them?"

In this teaching, Leah invites us to think about life in our local communities, outside of church. Read the notes or listen below as she explores how an encouragement to the people of God in the Hebrew Bible, might have resonance for us today.

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Stars or No Stars?

 Photo Credit: Sandor Weisz. Creative Commons license.

Photo Credit: Sandor Weisz. Creative Commons license.

Dr. Seuss' classic children's story The Sneetches explores the arbitrary ways groups define themselves against each other. As Dr. Christena Cleveland points out in her book Disunity In Christ, sadly the church is not immune from this phenomenon. But is that the only way it has to be? Or did Jesus, and the early church intend something better? In this teaching Leah explores Paul's hope for the early church to be a community that could hold diverse unity, and considers how we might continue to live into that hope.

First watch the video (or read the book), then you can read the notes or listen to the teaching below.

A New Way to Relate

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"All of us are wired for relationship. We’re wired to be with other people. We come from tribal ancestors who found safety, security, identity, and developed a plethora of amazing cultures that span the globe by associating in groups.

"We often feel the need to define and defend our group against other groups... But for those of us who are trying to live lives of Jesus-centered faith, hunkering down and only taking care of our own doesn’t really seem to be an option..." 

For Easter, we started a new series on all of the relationships in our lives, whether as group members, partners, parents, friends, or colleagues. What wisdom does Jesus (as well as thinkers of today) have for us about living well in the midst of all these relationships? Listen below or check out the notes here, and tune in next week for more!