On Friday we came together to celebrate the release of AntiochLIVE’s new album, History’s Anthem, and it was the best kind of family night! Our band led us in worship as we declared and celebrated the faithfulness of God.
History’s Anthem is a collection of the anthems of our church, and it is available on all digital outlets. Get your copy today!
TAKE A LOOK AT SOME HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE NIGHT:
A special thanks to Corey O’Connell for helping us capture the night!
This morning Drew Steadman shared part three of our series, All in All. Today’s message was centered around 2 Corinthians 4:1 – 5:10, and we talked about how Jesus is sufficient enough to shift our perspective. In our broken world, it is easy to lose sight of what God is doing, and ultimately lose heart. When our perspective is centered on what we can do, we become discouraged. But when our perspective is centered on what God is already doing, we have renewed confidence. Despite the challenges of this world, God is wanting to take us from being people who lose heart to people who are confident in His character and His plans.
It is easy to fall into the trap of trying to control our own circumstances rather than being confident in who God is. There is a guarantee that God will never change. He will always be who He says He is. He loves us, He is with us, He put His Spirit within us and He is working all things together for our good.
When we’re in the midst of a difficult situation, it can be hard to see that God is moving and working things together for our benefit. When you realize the value and beauty that is happening beneath the surface, everything changes.
SO, HOW DO WE GET THAT PERSPECTIVE SHIFT? THE ANSWER IS FAITH.
By definition, faith means to live by a different perspective. Faith is learning to live in light of heaven because heaven is what we’re made for. Our faith cannot be rooted in this world, it has to be in Jesus. If we think this world is meant to satisfy us, we will always be disappointed. While faith is choosing to trust in what we cannot see, faith is not ignoring the pain we experience in this world. Pain is real, and it is right to grieve. But even in grief, we can live in the hope of our eternal inheritance. Carl Gulley preached on grief this past fall, and we encourage you to listen to that message if you haven’t already.
God has given us an eternal hope with the promise of heaven. He also gives us His Spirit to help us through this life. The Spirit reminds us of the guarantee of what is to come. We don’t have to live with a hope that is in the things of this world, but with a hope that is in heaven.
TAKE A LOOK AT THREE WAYS TO PRACTICALLY APPLY THIS WEEK’S MESSAGE:
- Ask Jesus to increase your faith and shift your perspective // Jesus is faithful to meet us and answer our prayers. This week, pray this –
- “Lord, I believe, help me overcome my unbelief and increase my faith.”
- Declare 2 Corinthians 4:8-9 this week // In the midst of trial, it is easy to become stuck on our circumstances. We may feel struck down, but the Word of God says we are not destroyed. Read through the truth of who God says we are, even in the midst of trial.
- Read through 2 Corinthians with us // The Word of God overcomes how we feel, and cultivates an eternal perspective. Follow along with our 2 Corinthians reading plan, and renew your mind with the promises of God. Download a copy of our reading plan here.
AntiochLIVE’s new album, History’s Anthem, releases tomorrow, and we can’t wait! This album is a collection of songs recorded at church on Sunday morning and at World Mandate. Many of our worship leaders were a part of making this album, but we specifically wanted to sit down with the AntiochLIVE leadership team to hear a little more about the heart behind the album.
The leadership team consists of James Mark Gulley, Owen Wible, Thomas Wilson and Brandon Seibert. James Mark leads the team and oversees each of our songwriters. Owen serves the team as the project manager and keeps things moving logistically. He has also contributed with songwriting. Thomas leads out on the songwriting side of things. He looks at each of the song ideas and chooses the ones that we feel have a message that our church and Movement need. Brandon* serves as the producer, audio engineer and mixer. He has also contributed as a songwriter.
Take a look at what James Mark, Owen and Thomas had to say about History’s Anthem:
First off, tell us a little about the vision behind the album:
- James Mark: The vision behind the album of History’s Anthem for me is first and foremost we feel like God has called us to be worshippers who minister to His heart and lead people to encounter God through worship, and any way we can do that is our privilege.
- Thomas: As we talked about where we were headed, we agreed on how important it was for our songs to really reflect the life of our church. In the past we’ve written songs specifically for albums. Although there’s nothing wrong with that, sometimes we ended up with these songs that we literally only played one time at church. We didn’t want to do that again. So, we decided to just take it one song at a time, one month at a time, and focus on writing songs for the people of our church.
- Owen: I love that this album is recorded at church. It’s our volunteer team leading with our church body worshipping together. These aren’t just songs to fill an album. They’re the anthems from our church over the past year and a half.
- Thomas: It was so cool because we’d introduce each new song during a Sunday service, and watch how people responded. If a song went well, we’d record it, but if something didn’t seem to connect with people, we’d take the time to make the song better. Eventually when we felt like people were really resonating with a song, we’d pick a Sunday and just record it at church. And we wouldn’t even tell our church we were recording. To me it felt more genuine that way. It was like we were actually capturing the sound of our church, like our focus was on the people encountering God, not recording cool songs for a project.
- James Mark: As we began to put together songs for this season a couple different themes began to stick out. The first is that the simple name of Jesus has so much power. Just the power in the name of Jesus and the person of Jesus is unlike anything else in the world, and so we wrote songs that have so much to do with calling on His name. All in All just sings the name of Jesus over and over again. Your Name is just really a declaration of the power in Jesus’ name.
- Owen: The theme of God’s faithfulness also kept coming up over and over. My hope is that people are reminded of His unchanging nature and it propels them to worship Jesus.
- James Mark: We as a generation want to pay attention and be aware of the faithfulness of God. That is what compels us to worship Him, and worshipping Him is what He’s worthy of. That’s really the message behind History’s Anthem, that the anthem of history is God’s faithfulness, that God has been faithful to us when we have been faithless as a people in this world. Just like the song says, “Let heaven shout You will never fail.”
How did you decide on the album title?
- Thomas: One of my favorite parts about this last year was seeing a common theme develop throughout the writing process. We talked about a few different ideas for the title, but ultimately, it felt right to use a song title for the album title. The lyrics of History’s Anthem completely sum up the heart of the album. In the chorus alone, it’s almost like each phrase references a different song on the album. And then you come to the bridge and it’s almost like it’s saying, “In light of everything we’ve just said through each song on this album, we will ‘follow you with total abandon.’” It’s cool that it’s the last song on the album because to me it really ties it all together.
- James Mark: History’s anthem and the faithfulness of God became a theme that stuck out in a big way. Also, I think it was really cool that so many of these songs began in other nations. Specifically, History’s Anthem began in Greece with Caleb Seibert and his team there. God is faithful everywhere, all places to all people, and so History’s Anthem seemed to be a great title.
- Owen: The title is indicative of how all of history has seen God to be faithful. This album is our moment to join the anthem of the saints of old declaring that His promises are still true today and to tell future generations that He will continue to be faithful. It’s our testimony in music form.
How does the artwork tie in to the overall album?
- James Mark: When we started thinking through how we wanted to communicate about this album, the idea that came was to use actual artwork instead of just creating something on a computer. The artwork was put together by Tyler Guinn from Antioch Austin. He spent time praying and thinking about what he wanted it to look like, and we didn’t even really know what it would look like until we turned on the video camera and started filming him in his process. What came out was so colorful and beautiful and really kind of messy and unpredictable. That’s a lot like life and the journey that God has all of mankind on. But threaded throughout all of that is the fact that God is always faithful. He will never leave us or forsake us, and He’ll never deny His own name, so to me that is what the artwork means to the album.
- Thomas: It’s funny because when we had Tyler create the painting, half the songs hadn’t been written yet. So, in a lot of ways, Tyler’s painting was like a prophetic statement. All of the different colors and textures blended together to communicate one cohesive message, before we even knew what that message would end up saying. When we decided on the album title History’s Anthem we realized that this artwork really was like a visual representation of that theme. To me, the artwork symbolizes an invitation for you to sit in that empty chair and just gaze at God’s faithfulness in all its varied colors and forms.
- Owen: An art gallery is a window into what was happening at different times in history. It helps a single moment endure. In the same way, we want this album to testify to future generations that we have seen Him to be faithful in our day. The painting hung in a gallery is representative of what we’ve written on this album. The empty chair is your invitation to come and ponder what’s being said. And ultimately to add to the anthem of history the He’s been good to you.
Is there a particular song you are most excited for people to hear?
- Thomas: Ironically, because of the way we recorded these songs, none of them will be new to our church. So, I can’t say I’m excited for people to hear any of these songs for the first time – they already know them by heart! I do love the acoustic versions of God of the Breakthrough and Where Else Can I Go – I feel like they express the message of each of those songs in a really cool and different way.
- Owen: I’m also really happy with how the acoustic version of God of the Breakthrough came out. It has a different feel from the way we play it live. This arrangement is actually a lot closer to the way the song was originally written, and I think this version will help the lyrics sink in a little deeper.
- James Mark: Gosh, I can’t say there’s one that I am most excited about for people to hear. Asking me to pick a favorite song is kind of like asking me to pick my favorite child. I feel like I’m kind of a dad to all of these songwriters and all of these songs, but I would say the last song that got finished, Where Else Can I Go, is a really special one to me. I wrote about it on the blog if you want to read more about it. It was really meaningful when I felt God was telling me that He wanted me to lead it for our church so others would be able to sing it as well.
Is there anything else you would like to share?
- James Mark: I am just so proud of all the people who contributed to this record! This album is really a reflection of the culture of people that we have here at Antioch Waco and also in Antioch globally. I am someone who has been able to come alongside and kind of take the torch and keep going, but I love that all of us are just carrying that torch. We get to carry the anthems for this point of history. And hopefully our due desire is that we would sing the anthem with our lives so passionately and so powerfully that generations to come will be able to hear and say, “I experienced the faithfulness of God through the revelation that this church, this movement and these people were proclaiming and that gave me a confidence to walk in so that I can sing my own song, take up my part in the anthem of history that God is faithful, He is real, He is good and He is here with us right now.” That what I want people to get out of the album, and really out of all the albums we make.
History’s Anthem is available now! Check it out on iTunes, Spotify, Google Play, Amazon and all other music streaming platforms. To celebrate the release of the album, we will be having a worship night at 7 p.m. in the Auditorium. We hope to see you there!
*Brandon is a part of ENGAGE THE ISLANDS this summer, so we were not able to connect with him.
This past weekend 540 kids and leaders headed out to Latham Springs for camp! From games, obstacle courses and swimming, to worship and hearing from some of our leaders, it was a blast! Throughout the weekend the kids learned more about what it looks like to follow Jesus and hear from Him.
TAKE A LOOK AT SOME HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE WEEKEND:
This morning Drew Steadman continued our All in All series with a message on living in freedom. We read through 2 Corinthians 2:1 – 3:18, and we took a look at how the church in Corinth responded to sin. They were flippant toward the grace of God because they didn’t fully understand that they were trapped in their sin. Many times we have the same mindset as the Corinthians; they didn’t realize they were stuck, and we don’t always realize it either. But because of Jesus, we are given the grace to be free of our sin.
IN ORDER TO FULLY UNDERSTAND GRACE, WE FIRST NEED TO UNDERSTAND THE WEIGHT OF SIN:
- Sin hurts others, but grace forgives // The enemy tells us that our sin doesn’t impact other people, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. We like to believe our sin is a personal issue we can manage, but in reality, our sin eventually leads to greater pain in our own lives and in the lives of others. It’s important to recognize that people are hurt by our sin, and there are consequences, sometimes that follow us the rest of our life. But there is also forgiveness. We first receive forgiveness from Jesus, and we then have the grace to ask for forgiveness from those we hurt.
- Sin always leads to death, but grace resurrects // The very nature of sin is death. Sin is to the soul what cancer is to the body. When someone is battling cancer, they are willing to do whatever it takes to rid the disease from their bodies. We need to view sin in the same way, because ultimately if we don’t kill sin, it will kill us. Jesus is not intimidated by the weight of sin in this world. In fact, He gives us victory over our sin and over death. When we surrender our lives to Jesus, we experience the rescue of God.
- We cannot fix our own sin, but grace transforms // There is nothing we can do to fix ourselves. Jesus knew we couldn’t overcome the weight of our sin, so He took it away. He also gave us His Spirit so we can live transformed. Knowledge of our victory isn’t enough; we need the grace of God to walk out in total freedom.
Once we recognize sin for what it is, we can move toward living a life of freedom. Sin is a big deal, but grace is a bigger deal. The grace of God is sufficient enough for us to live a life free of the weight of sin.
TAKE A LOOK AT THREE PRACTICAL WAYS TO APPLY THIS WEEK’S MESSAGE:
- Acknowledge sin and bring it into the light // The enemy wants us to keep our sin hidden, but confession and accountability bring us into freedom. If you are not connected to a Lifegroup, start there! It’s important to have community around you that can speak truth and hold you accountable.
- Cultivate a lifestyle of worship // Sin is a cheap substitute for the real joy we find in Jesus. Fixing our eyes on Jesus and getting in His presence gives us the grace to press into Him in the midst of our struggles.
- Read through 2 Corinthians with us // The Word of God overcomes how we feel. Follow along with our 2 Corinthians reading plan, and renew your mind with the truth every day. Download a copy of our reading plan here.
Lisa lives in a small town outside of Waco with her four children and her husband. She homeschools two of her children, and she is usually on-the-go between baseball, softball and dance lessons. On Sunday mornings, you can find Lisa taking care of our little ones in the babies’ classroom.
Find out why Lisa enjoys serving with our Kids Ministry –
Why did you decide to start volunteering?
I have always had a heart for children. I enjoy being around children, watching them grow and being a part of their journey. I have also seen firsthand what an impact the ministry mentors have made in the lives of my own children as they have attended Kids Ministry through the years. Each of the mentors are such a blessing, and as a parent, I am very thankful for them. I wanted the opportunity to serve alongside them and give back what I have been given.
How have you personally grown through your experience serving?
Being primarily with babies, has challenged me to have faith no matter what. Babies fully rely on us to care for them: whether they’re hungry, need a diaper changed or just want to play and learn. In the same way, our Heavenly Father is always there to fulfill our needs.
Do you have a testimony to share from your time serving?
When the children go into the one-and two-year-old classrooms across the hall, it is fun to see how much they have grown since being in our classroom. The first time I saw one of the little ones that started in the baby room with me, their parents and I smiled and waved to each other as the little one looked at me questionably until I said hi and their name. The look in their eyes changed and they smiled. It was a reminder to me that they hear our voices while we are praying, speaking and singing over them as babies.
Is there anything you want to share with people who are thinking about volunteering in Kids Ministry?
If the Lord puts it on your heart to join Kids Ministry, just jump in and let Him guide you. Whether you have children or not, it is an awesome experience. Every day is new and exciting with them and it is so much fun to be a part of their journey.
If you are interested in volunteering with the Kids Ministry, or in another area of our church, fill out this form. We can’t wait for you to get connected!
This morning Vincent Carpenter kicked off our new series, All in All. Throughout the summer, we are journeying together through the book of 2 Corinthians. As we unpack these Scriptures, we believe it will be a mirror to our lives today, and we will learn more about how Jesus truly can be our all in all.
Today we focused on 2 Corinthians 1:3-11, and learned how God can be our all in all in the midst of trial. As we look at the Corinthian church, we see that God wants us to know Him as our comforter and deliverer in the midst of our trials.
Paul is clear that trials are inevitable, but trials are an invitation to know God in a more intimate way. Often our comfort is intertwined with giving away our lives to God and others. We don’t receive God’s comfort by doing religious works. Instead, when we voluntarily do something out of love for someone else, God will use it as a way to release comfort in our life.
Throughout this passage Paul also encourages the Corinthians, and us, to see God as our deliverer in the midst of our trials. Paul had no bitterness, anger or disappointment. Instead, he declared that God delivered him before, and He will deliver him again. Paul had hope because he was confident that God was enough. The key to deliverance is hope.
TAKE A LOOK AT THREE WAYS YOU CAN APPLY THIS WEEK’S MESSAGE:
- God provides comfort for people in pain so they can provide comfort to others who are in pain. If you are experiencing a painful trial in your life right now, look for opportunities to support, encourage or help someone else in pain.
- We experience personal deliverance when we declare our hope is in Jesus and not in our situation. Think of any place of bondage or struggle in your life and declare over the problem that your hope is in Jesus.
- Take a few minutes each day this week and tell Jesus He is enough for you. Declare that you are satisfied with Him, with all He has and all He is doing in your life.
We also encourage you to jump in with us as we read through 2 Corinthians this summer. Our summer reading plan starts tomorrow; click here to download a copy.
Fadi is a sophomore studying corporate communications at Baylor. He has grown up in Waco, but he and his family are originally from Lebanon. In addition to going to school, Fadi works at a local high school and is involved with our College Ministry. He also volunteers with our Media Team as a photographer.
Fadi recently shared with us why he enjoys serving with the Media Team. Check it out –
Why did you decide to start volunteering?
I’ve had a passion for photography since sixth grade. When the opportunity came to serve with the church, I ran for it. I enjoy having the opportunity to press pause and capture those moments when God is moving.
How have you personally grown through your experience serving?
Volunteering with the Media Team has given me fresh perspective. I’ve had the opportunity to build community and learn from some great photographers here at the church. They have really inspired me to continue to get better with photography and digital media.
Do you have a testimony to share from your time serving?
I was a volunteer photographer while I was on AWAKEN, our College Ministry’s Spring Break mission trip, and it was an experience I continue to hold on to. It was incredibly powerful to capture authentic worship and prayer in a community that was being brought back to life by the presence of God. Having the ability to save those moments where faith seems to stand still will always blow my mind.
Is there anything you want to share with people who are thinking about volunteering with the Media Team?
It’s an awesome opportunity to use your unique talents within the church. You also have the opportunity to learn, find community and grow deeply. If you’re thinking about it, you should definitely do it!
If you are interested in volunteering with the Media Team, or in another area of our church, fill out this form. We can’t wait for you to get connected!
Sunday was one of our favorite services of the year! It doesn’t get better than coming together to see people step into a new life with Jesus. As a church, we celebrated as 24 families who dedicated their little ones to the Lord and promised to raise them in the ways of righteousness. Ninety-two people were also baptized; publicly declaring their desire to wholeheartedly follow Jesus.
CHECK OUT SOME PHOTO HIGHLIGHTS FROM OUR MORNING:
Like we mentioned on Sunday, this summer we are coming together as a Movement to ENGAGE THE ISLANDS. Over the course of the summer, we are sending 75 teams to various locations to share the love of Jesus. Whether you are planning to go to Southeast Asia or not, you can still be a part of ENGAGE THE ISLANDS by partnering with our teams through prayer. We believe that by laying a foundation of prayer, we will see a move of God throughout Southeast Asia.
BELOW ARE A FEW WAYS YOU CAN PRAY FOR OUR TEAMS AND THE PEOPLE THEY WILL MEET:
ACTS 28:2-10 //
Read the following story from Acts 28 and agree in prayer for our teams to experience the same protection and favor throughout the summer.
“The islanders showed us unusual kindness. They built a fire and welcomed us all because it was raining and cold. Paul gathered a pile of brushwood and, as he put it on the fire, a viper, driven out by the heat, fastened itself on his hand. When the islanders saw the snake hanging from his hand, they said to each other, “This man must be a murderer; for though he escaped from the sea, the goddess Justice has not allowed him to live.” But Paul shook the snake off into the fire and suffered no ill effects. The people expected him to swell up or suddenly fall dead; but after waiting a long time and seeing nothing unusual happen to him, they changed their minds and said he was a god. There was an estate nearby that belonged to Publius, the chief official of the island. He welcomed us to his home and showed us generous hospitality for three days. His father was sick in bed, suffering from fever and dysentery. Paul went in to see him and, after prayer, placed his hands on him and healed him. When this had happened, the rest of the sick on the island came and were cured. They honored us in many ways; and when we were ready to sail, they furnished us with the supplies we needed.”
PRAY FOR OUR BASES //
- Pray for our base leaders to be envisioned and unified
- Pray for fear and anxiety to completely cease and be replaced with expectancy for God to move
- Pray for our teams to quickly find people of peace to build relationships with
- Pray for our base leaders and interns to be compelled to love Jesus and people more than ever before
- Pray for protection and a supernatural covering throughout the entire summer
PRAY FOR OUR SHORT-TERM TEAMS //
- Pray for all financial needs to be met
- Pray for travel logistics to run smoothly, specifically that all flights would be made, and that every team would arrive safely
- Pray for each of our teams to be protected and covered
- As each of our teams attend trainings, pray for them to be equipped by the teachings and refreshed by the Holy Spirit as they are sent out
- Pray for our teams to be filled with boldness as they share with those around them
PRAY FOR THE LOCALS //
- Pray for their hearts to be softened and open to the gospel
- Pray for relationships to be built quickly between our teams and the translators they will be working with throughout the summer
- Pray for local believers to be stirred to share the gospel and see the Church established
- Pray for a covering of safety for every local believer
- Pray for salvation and healing to spread throughout the islands
Throughout the summer, you are also invited to join us for an hour of prayer every Thursday at noon in the Prayer and Equipping Center.