The Orchard Blog

Don’t Forget to Change Your Clocks! by orchardblog
March 31, 2006, 9:54 pm
Filed under: The Orchard


Hey everyone!  Don't forget – daylight savings time ends THIS COMING SUNDAY!  Be sure to set your clock forward one hour (yes, we lose one hour!) before you go to bed Saturday night!
See you Sunday!

simple. by scotthodge
March 29, 2006, 5:46 pm
Filed under: The Orchard


There's a word that you will be hearing a lot of these next several weeks because it's the name of our new series beginning Easter weekend at The Orchard!

We're excited to be taking six weeks to journey through the scriptures to find out what the Bible has to say about simplifying our lives.

Here's the breakdown:



It's going to be a great series AND a great Easter weekend!

This year, we have added a fourth service Easter weekend to accommodate the crowds that we are expecting.

Saturday, April 15th 4:30pm & 6:30pm (with a big Easter Egg Hunt between the two services!)
Sunday, April 16th 9:00am & 10:45am

Not that it's all about the numbers (although, numbers are a great indicator of whether or not we're effectively connecting with our community…) but check out the incredible opportunity we have had these past few Easters and the growth that has taken place:

2003: 450
2004: 573
2005: 931


We're expecting between 1200-1500 people to walk through our doors Easter weekend!

Are you ready? Have you starting inviting people?

This weekend we are going to put a tool into your hands to help make it easier than ever to invite your unchurched friends and family members to the Orchard Easter weekend!

See you Sunday!

Posted by Scott Hodge

Quote by Augustine by orchardblog
March 27, 2006, 4:20 pm
Filed under: The Orchard

"God loves each of us as if there were only one of us to love."

Post by Kathryn Egly

Connecting Point by orchardblog
March 23, 2006, 9:26 pm
Filed under: The Orchard

One of the best things I love about being a part of The Orchard staff team is that I get to meet so many new people. Are you new to The Orchard? I would love to meet you!

We have a great way for you to get connected at The Orchard. Join us this Sunday, March 26th at 12:15 for a very informal “meet and greet” which not only gives you a chance to meet the staff, but also a chance for us to get to know you!

This is a great time to ask questions that you may have about The Orchard, why we are here and our plans for the future.

Have a great day and I hope to see you Sunday.

 Posted by Terri Casey

Why do people serve? by orchardblog
March 21, 2006, 3:53 pm
Filed under: The Orchard

I had the privilege of attending an outstanding children’s ministry conference at Willow Creek Church last week. One of my favorite sessions was with Bill Hybels.

He asked the question, “What causes someone to serve?”

He pointed out how much EASIER it would be for us to just sleep in or ‘let someone else’ do the work. Why do people give up their time, talent, and treasure to serve others?

He said that this has to do with something he called “Holy Discontent.” It’s a matter of seeing something that you want to make better, and not being content unless you can get involved in making it better.

God has a passion to make things better. He is looking for people whose passion matches His passion–so that He can use them in a POWEFUL and POSITIVE way!

I Timothy 6:18-19 tells us that we are to be rich in GOOD DEEDS and by doing this we will take hold of REAL LIVING!

My passion is seeing kids love God with all their heart. My passion refuses to let me sit idly by, watching kids grow up without knowing Jesus Christ as their friend. I know God has this passion. Since I’ve hooked up my passion with God’s passion, I have experienced REAL LIVING!

What is your passion? In what area is God able to meet up with YOU to make a POWERFUL and POWERFUL difference in the life of others?

Posted by Kathryn Egly

Parent-Child Dedication by orchardblog
March 15, 2006, 3:27 pm
Filed under: The Orchard


I’m excited about this Sunday’s Parent-Child Dedication happening at The Orchard! We have right around 20 babies/children who will be dedicated at our 10:45am gathering. This is going to be a very significant moment as the parents of these children publically commit to raise their children according to the Bible. (And yes, the Bible has a LOT to say about raising our children!)

So really, it’s a double commitment – one, it’s a commitment on behalf of the parents to do their best to raise their children God’s way. Secondly, it’s giving our children BACK to God for His use and purpose.
Now – I need to ask your help…

If you normally attend the 10:45am service and are not having your children dedicated, would you consider attending the 9am service just for this weekend to help open up more seats for all of the visitors we will have for the parent/child dedication?

Thank you so much for considering that! (It’s a GREAT problem to have – believe me!!)

Hope your week is going great! See you Sunday!

PS – Sorry for the scary baby picture. I couldn’t help it…

Posted by Scott Hodge

We’re Movin’ On Up! by scotthodge
March 14, 2006, 8:44 am
Filed under: The Orchard


Hey everyone! If you were with us this past Sunday, then you know that we had a great weekend here at The Orchard! There were a bunch of exciting things happening on Sunday.

First of all, we had the grand (re)opening of our new Common Grounds Coffeehouse!

Man………it looks GREAT!! I am blown away at how nice it turned out… (Pictures coming soon!) And, as a part of our new Common Grounds, we also used our brand new espresso machine! Our old one was dying a slow death and only one side of it worked. This new one is TOP NOTCH!

We are SO SO SO excited about creating irresistable environments for our guests – and the new CG is all about that! (And the pastries and muffins!? OH MAN…..!)

This weekend we also wrapped up our series, “Bling! Bling!” We spent four weeks on the subject of our money and what the scriptures have to teach us about how to manage it wisely. It was a great series! And I have to say that it always amazes me how receptive and excited people seem to get when you teach about finances.

I can’t tell you how many pastors I know who avoid this subject like the plague out of fear of what people might think. But when you realize that the Bible has SO much to say about our “stuff” – our money, we would actually be doing a disservice for people by NOT talking about it! (And here’s the thing – this stuff isn’t “Scott Hodge’s” or any other pastor’s opinion or theology. This is the BIBLE! It’s what GOD says.)

Ok…moving on.

Lastly, we had a great turn out for our adult missions trip happening in August. I CANNOT tell you how excited I am that we are sending a team to Brazil! The fact that we get to PHYSICALLY move out of our comfort zone and go to the Amazon and share the love of Jesus with people who need hope – man, that’s awesome… Sending money to a missionary – that’s a good thing to do, but it’s pretty easy! Getting on an airplane and flying to another part of the world? That takes tons of effort and sacrifice! I can’t wait to hear the stories that will come back with that team…

Needless to say, I am so proud of our church community! And I’m honored to lead such a passionate, missional focused and DIVERSE group of people who are excited about being a part of something so much bigger than ourselves as individuals. I get so excited when I start thinking about what this place will look like a year from now. Or two years. Or five years!! I feel like the Jefferson’s – “We’re movin’ on up…!

Have a great day!

Scott Hodge

P.S. – If you missed this past weekend, you can download my interview with John Groleau here. John is a President of Lighthouse Financial here in Aurora. He gave us some GREAT insight on practical money management.

TGIF! by orchardblog
March 10, 2006, 4:48 pm
Filed under: The Orchard

It’s Friday here at the Orchard. Fridays are CRAZY days as we gear up for our weekends!

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Leave a Legacy in a Letter by kathrynegly
March 9, 2006, 12:51 pm
Filed under: The Orchard

Parents and Grandparents,

Today I read about a man who writes a letter to his kids each year on their birthdays. His children are still young so he is saving the letters until they get older and will appreciate them.

How special would it be for you to write letters to your children. You may also consider keeping a journal where you occasionally write thoughts to them (just write the positive thoughts, please:)).

Just before my grandmother passed away, I had the opportunity to spend several hours with her where she told me story after story about her life, about my parents, and about my life as a young child. I was captivated. I would love to have letters from her about those experiences and what she learned from them.
Think about how amazing it would be to give your children (or grandchildren) letters one day about what they taught you about yourself, about life, or about God.

The next time you are at the grocery store, pick up a notepad; leave it on your nightstand and write in it every once in a while. It might be just as special for you one day as it will be for your child.

Posted by Kathryn Egly

The Kitchen by terricasey
March 8, 2006, 10:41 am
Filed under: The Orchard

Hello Blog readers!

I wanted to tell you about a great experience happening in my life right now. We are going into our 4th week of our small group and we are having an awesome experience!

I have been able to see the whole environment strategy (iFollow) develop right before my eyes. The foyer happens every sunday when I see people walking into the chuch. The living room is all about friendship and connection. But the kitchen is something you just have to experience for yourself! The discussions we are having are fantastic!

If you are not involved in a small group, get involved somewhere else! There are so many opportunities to get plugged in at The Orchard and there are so many fascinating people you will meet.

Are you currently involved in a small group? How do you get connected?

Posted by Terri Casey