First Free Blog

COVID-19 Weekly Update #15

Posted onJune 19, 2020 | by: First Free | 0 comments

Can you believe this is weekly update #15?! As we prepare for in-person services to resume, it’s time for us to retire the COVID-19 weekly update. Of course, that doesn’t mean we won’t be communicating. Beginning next week, we’ll be making a digital version of our bulletin available on our livestream page. You can also sign up to get that sent to your inbox each week by clicking the button below....Keep Reading

Listen, Lament, and Learn

Posted onJune 17, 2020 | by: First Free | 0 comments

In Micah 6:8 we read, “He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” We care about justice because God cares about justice. But what does that look like today? How do we engage when we see injustice around us, particularly racial injustice? Here are some resources that we believe can be helpful to us as we walk humbly with God through these waters....Keep Reading

COVID-19 Weekly Update #14

Posted onJune 12, 2020 | by: First Free | 0 comments

If you’re like me, you’ve had conversations with friends or family about race and justice and “what now?” over the last few weeks. Coming face-to-face with the appalling injustice of the taking of George Floyd’s life and the resulting protests across the country have amplified these issues. There is so much being said at every turn. It’s caused me to consider what the church’s response should be. What does it look like in 2020 to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with our God (Mic. 6:8)? Elder Chairman Jeff S., Pastor Josh, and I have been talking and we think listening is a critical step. In the next week we’ll be sharing some resources to help us all do that, so watch for that on our blog. The Elders will also be taking time at our next couple meetings to listen and discuss how we can better pursue what our Statement of Faith says: “… to live out our faith with care for one another, compassion toward the poor and justice for the oppressed.”...Keep Reading

COVID-19 Weekly Update #13

Posted onJune 5, 2020 | by: First Free | 0 comments

This week our staff team welcomed our newest pastoral resident, Dirk Jasperse, and his wife Katie. We are so excited for you to have a chance to meet them and didn’t want to wait until we begin in-person services. Here’s a video we recorded right before they moved which has a brief update on the Residency Program and an interview with Dirk and Katie. We also invite you to join us in welcoming them with a gift card shower. Cards need to be addressed to them and can be mailed to the church office, dropped off during the week, or e-cards can be sent to Store suggestions include Dillons, Target, and Barnes & Noble....Keep Reading

COVID-19 Weekly Update #12

Posted onMay 31, 2020 | by: First Free | 0 comments

Thank you to those of you who filled out our restart survey this past week. As you can imagine, all the options of answers were represented in the results. In moving forward, it is our prayer that First Free will be marked by grace and unity, even though we have differing opinions. We pray that we would seek to love and understand and care for one another well. Gathering together is one of our primary pathways for growing as a disciple so we long to worship together again with the entire church family! Resuming in-person services doesn’t get us all the way there---we know it will be wise for some to continue engaging online even after we begin meeting in person---but we continue to prepare and plan for that next step....Keep Reading

COVID-19 Weekly Update #11

Posted onMay 22, 2020 | by: First Free | 0 comments

This week we want to hear from you! Our team continues planning for resuming in-person services later this summer and it would help us to know what you are planning to do. Please take a minute to fill out this short, five-question survey. It will stay open until next Friday, but we’d love to hear from you before then. As we’ve said, Pastor Ron is leading that team and would be happy to receive any additional input or concerns you may have....Keep Reading

COVID-19 Weekly Update #10

Posted onMay 15, 2020 | by: First Free | 0 comments

Our series in the Psalms has shown us how to pray in our exile. We’re not in exile from the Promised Land like Israel, but we are in exile. As we learned in the first part of our series in 1 Peter, our exile is simply life on earth, away from our promised eternal inheritance. Life in exile is hard. We experience the effects of the fall so clearly. But life in exile is not without hope. We’ll return to that hope this week as we pick back up in 1 Peter 4:12-19. We’ll be in 1 Peter the rest of May and then our plan is to cover 2 Peter in June (Pastor Dominick will be leading that series!) and July will be our Missions Month. You may find it helpful to read through 1 Peter before Sunday to reorient yourself to the book....Keep Reading

Praying Psalm 106

Posted onMay 11, 2020 | by: Josh Black | 0 comments

We just finished our series on Psalms for Uncertain Times by looking at Psalm 106. My goal for this series was to help you learn a new vocabulary and grammar of prayer that may feel a bit like a foreign language. Praying the Psalms gives us patterns and prompts for prayer. One of the methods we’ve been using in these posts has been the ACTS method, letting a psalm lead us through adoration, confession, thanksgiving, and supplication. Some psalms are especially suited to helping us most in just one of these categories. Psalm 106 is unique in the pattern it gives us for confession....Keep Reading

COVID-19 Weekly Update #9

Posted onMay 8, 2020 | by: First Free | 0 comments

Kansas entered Phase One of reopening this past Monday, so first things first, what is First Free planning to do? Governor Kelly presented a four-phase plan to reopen, which Sedgwick County adopted with no changes: Phase One, Phase Two, Phase Three, and Phase Out. As Kansas moves toward Phase Out we will begin to phase in resuming in-person ministry. For Sunday morning worship services, at this point we believe the wisest and most loving course of action is to wait until Kansas officially enters Phase Out. This means the earliest we would begin in-person Sunday worship is June 21. We’ve been in communication with other churches in Wichita and this is consistent with what a number of churches our size are planning. We’ll be sharing more details...Keep Reading

Praying Psalm 103

Posted onMay 4, 2020 | by: Judy Hollander | 0 comments

Have you ever wondered how to help children grow in the discipline of prayer? They learn as you model and encourage them to pray beyond the memorized prayers at meals and bedtime. Memorized prayers are a wonderful first step in helping children develop the habit of prayer. But look for opportunities to encourage children to pray beyond what they have memorized. To pray from their own thoughts and out of their own experiences and also to grow in their ability to pray in response to what they read in the Bible. Read Psalm 103 together and guide your children through the ACTS method of praying this psalm (Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Supplication)....Keep Reading