Rivergate Community Church

4737 N. Lombard Street
Portland, OR 97203-4533
503-285-3138

Sunday Service
4:00 PM - 6:00 PM

LeftHandSide

UPCOMING EVENTS:

Online via Zoom

• Sundays at 4:00 PM
Worship Service
more…

• Mondays at 5:00 PM
Men's Bible Study
more…

• Tuesdays at 5:00 PM
Women's Bible Study
more…

Feeding the Hungry - Volunteer
more…

title_message

Weekly Message


March 7, 2021

changeHow much have you changed? Our whole life has been changed this past year. A year ago was the last time all of us were together in the building at Rivergate. We had not contemplated using technology so that others outside the walls of our building could join us. Yet, look at what the Lord has done – we have people from across the country being able to join our worship service and Bible studies each week.

All of us have do change how we did life this past year, and it was difficult. We had to adapt and change, try new technology, move out of our comfort zone, and yet the ministry has gone on in the North Portland community. We have been feeding people all year and helping out with clothing and toiletries to shelters and new housing dedicated to those who were formerly homeless.

May we continue to serve the Lord in new ways as we follow His guiding us to new ministry opportunities and meeting news in the community. So proud of each of you and all the sacrifices you have made this past year.

Grateful that the Lord never changes,

Pastor Carren


February 28, 2021

Snowy berriesThink of someone you believe is a hero – what makes them a hero? Is it something they did or said? We have been looking at Hebrews 11 and all those who are called heroes of the faith. All those who were mentioned in Hebrews 11 were obedient to God's call on their lives. The key verse is 34: “Their weakness was turned to strength.” These people were not special or super human. They were chosen by God for a specific purpose and even with their fears and failures they stepped up to do the job. God used them all for his glory and to accomplish his purpose.

The Lord calls each one of us to be a hero of the faith as well. You may not see yourself as a hero, but neither did Moses, Abraham, David or all the others. We need to do something every day. We need to care for those around us – our family – friends – neighbors, co-workers and classmates as well as the widow, orphan, stranger and homeless – whoever the Lord shows us.

Keep your eyes on Jesus – he will help you run the race set out for you. He will turn your weakness into strength. Let's persevere and not grow weary and lose heart.

Be a hero for Jesus,

Pastor Carren


February 21, 2021

faithAre you good in a crisis? Some of us got to find out this past week with all the snow and ice. Crisis come to us in all kinds of ways – we can have a natural disaster like the storm we had here. There was the energy crisis that many of us lived through in the 1970's...waiting in line for gas that we could only buy on odd or even days depending on our license plate numbers. Many of us have also faced health crisis at some point, and all of us have faced the crisis of losing a loved one. So what are we to do?

The word I think that is critical for us to have as Christians is faith. We do not need faith to believe in things we can see. Faith is being sure without seeing. Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen. We have to know – we have to be certain that God is always at work – even if we don't see. In any crisis we need to remember the words the prophet Elisha spoke to his servant when they were surrounded by an invading army: “Don't be afraid for there are more on our side than theirs.” And we remember in that passage the servant's eyes were opened and he saw the armies of heaven all around.

May we always remember that God is at work in our lives.

Having faith in the Lord with you,

Pastor Carren


February 14, 2021




On Vacation




Pastor Carren


February 7, 2021




On Vacation




Pastor Carren


January 31, 2021

Clouds SunLast week we began looking at the word faith. Faith is holding on our pushing through until we get to God. Not always an easy life, but it is vital for us to have in our lives.

Faith is a paradox – like so much with the Lord it is contrary to reason and yet is true. Faith sings in prison like Paul and Silas did in the book of Acts. God sent an earthquake and all the doors opened and all the chains immediately fell off. Yet not one prisoner left – so the guard and his whole family were converted and baptized that very night.

Faith is believing God's promises will come true like Abraham and Sarah. Too old to become parents any longer, and yet God had promised descendants more numerous than the stars. How do you hold on to that promise in your life...by faith. If you look at that story of Abraham it says that he believed God – and it goes on to say that it was credited to him as righteousness. We know that in Habakkuk it says the righteous live by faith.

Believing that God's promises come true with you,

Pastor Carren


January 24, 2021

faithToday I want to look at another key for our lives as Christians – faith. What does that mean to you? We hear that word a lot, but what is important for us? Faith is being certain and true. True faith is confidence in God – not ourselves. It is what we are certain or assured of or believe.

What do you believe? That is key for all of us to ask ourselves from time to time. When push comes to shove, when I am being beaten in the storms of life – what do I believe? What am I certain about? The time to know that answer is before the storm hits, so that when it does we can hang on to those things we are certain about and believe.

As Christians we are called to live by faith. We haven't seen God, but we believe he exists, that he loves us and promised to be with us always. Faith – like love – is a choice. We have to wait at times and that is difficult for most of us, but as we look through Scripture we see the word YET again and again. Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior. God is always at work – you can count on it. You may never understand his ways – but faith will carry you through all the days to come.

Choosing faith over fear with you,

Pastor Carren


January 17, 2021

loveI love... how would you fill in that blank? Some may say springtime, snow, the ocean, or chocolate, and our answers would be as different as we are. When we hear the word love most of us think of that warm feeling we get in our heart when we think of something or someone that we love.

Love is more than a feeling – it is also a choice – we can choose to love. This week I took a look at the Gospels to see how often the word love appears. In Matthew 17 times, Mark 9 times, Luke 18, but the one with the most verses with love was John where it is mentioned 57 times – more than all the other Gospels added together.

John knew about love and when we think of the most famous passage in the Bible – it is John 3:16: “God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son that whoever believes on him will be saved and have eternal life.” We all know that passage, but think of it for a moment. How great is God's love for us – he gave us the best gift he had – Jesus – to save us and give us the promise of eternal life with God. Jesus came to earth because of love.

May the realization of that love change our hearts and lives forever. God loves you... and me!



Grateful for a God of love with you,

Pastor Carren


January 10, 2021

AscensionWhat is the anchor or building block of your faith? What are the things that deep down inside you know to be true? I can remember back to a time when I was in 1st or 2nd grade and my younger sister, Candy, and I went to our Aunt Ollie's house. I can still see her so clearly on that day telling us a story form the Bible in a song. She started out with the wise man built his house upon the rock, rains came down and the floods came up – but the house built on rock stood firm. Then the foolish man built his house upon the sand – the rains came down and the floods came up – the house built on sand went splat. It was almost 60 years ago now and I can still see her face and arms with the rains coming down and the floods coming up. It was the first Bible story I ever learned.

The key point in that passage is that both builders had heard the Word of the Lord. The difference was the wise one had put it into practice and the foolish one had not. We have to listen – that is the first thing – but once we do we also have to obey – to follow through to change.

John knew about love and when we think of the most famous passage in the Bible – it is John 3:16: “God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son that whoever believes on him will be saved and have eternal life.” We all know that passage, but think of it for a moment. How great is God's love for us – he gave us the best gift he had – Jesus – to save us and give us the promise of eternal life with God. Jesus came to earth because of love.

May we all be like the wise man and build our house on the solid rock of Jesus.



Standing firm in Jesus with you,

Pastor Carren


January 3, 2021

Happy New YearOn this first Sunday of a new year I wanted to look back on our season of Advent and how we focused on the key word of Emmanuel – God with us. That isn't just news for Christmas, but God is still with us to this day.

Think of all we have experienced this past year – God was with us. And as we start out on a New Year – the word is still the same – God with us. Those words need to sink into the depths of each heart today. I pray that we are inspired and challenged to be more obedient and faithful in our lives as those heroes of the faith were. We study God's Word not for information, but for transformation – to be changed. We have to decide to change – to do life differently – to adjust our priorities.

This next year is critically important for all of us. God has allowed our world to be turned upside down for a reason. We started out thinking that this would last 1-2 months and then we would be back in the building and life would return to normal. May we spend more time seeking the Lord for wisdom, courage and strength for the days to come.

Thankful that God is with us,

Pastor Carren