ITLOTC 8-19-16


(In The Life Of The Church) 


The Micro Nature of the Gospel

I once debated a staff member about the purpose of the gospel.  We agreed that the gospel demands change.  Our disagreement was about who it changes.  He was suggesting it intends to make systematic changes at a macro level.  I was advocating that Jesus changed individuals.  Both of us, if pressed, would have conceded a version of the other's argument.  

Yes Jesus did change the world and is still confronting systems of injustice.  My point was, he did it through relationships.  It's part of the purpose of the incarnation.  Jesus confronts me and my relationship to macro systems of injustice.  If I'm honest, one of the reasons I feel strongly about this argument is because of my pastoral experience.  

We are moving ever so closer to election day.  As we approach that day I anticipate the articles shared on Facebook will be more cutting,  the rhetoric from each candidate less charitable, and our shared sense of humanity will diminish.  

We all know now that tone can't be detected through text messages and emails and sometimes that can have a big impact on a social exchange.  We can interpret incorrectly.  Social media exchanges run that risk.  Sitting behind computer screens and on the other side of cell phones we find a courage to speak with greater cynicism than we would had we to converse in person.  This is why I think, Jesus would prefer relationships had he ministered in our day. 

There's something spiritual, something additional, that is present in our conversations with each other when we do so in the same space.  It's much more difficult for me to forget that you are human, loved by God and someone who I likely would enjoy if I permitted myself to do so in person to person exchange than in a social media exchange.  

So I'd like to include another image from the olympics.  North and South Korea have sat next to each other in political divisiveness since before the Cold War.  I'm sure both countries live in fear of the what the other might/could do.  The boarder between those two countries allows them to believe something about each other in same way social media screens between us do.  


But then I saw a Jesus' relationship-kind-of-moment at the Olympics. Artistic gymnasts Lee Eun-ju (R) of South Korea and Hong Un-jong of North Korea (L) would not allow a state of war on their divided peninsula prevent them from bonding in Rio.  Confronted with each others humanity, instincts of charity and friendship were allowed to flourish.  Go team world! 


New HR and Leadership Team Members

The leadership team met  Sunday night August 7th and at that meeting they selected a new member for their squad and also someone to serve on the HR team.  I'm excited to tell you that our new leadership team person is Emma Wood and that Jerad Gould has been selected to serve on HR.  This week and last week I've introduced them to you.  

Name: Emma Jane Wood


What brings you to Waco: Initially Baylor, my first job out of my doctoral program was as Staff Psychologist at Baylor’s Counseling Center. I was looking to bring Russ home to Texas (he’s a 6th generation Texan) and had applied for almost every open counseling center psychologist position in the state and Baylor was the only one I heard back from. It so happened that Russ had attended Baylor from 1999-2003, but never imagined that he would move back to Waco. Over the past 6 years we have fallen in love with Waco and more recently UBC. We have rooted our family here, Russ, Myself and our two daughters Sophie (3) and Winnie (1). I can’t imagine leaving and I can’t imagine loving a community more.

Movie and/or TV Show: I’m slightly (a lot) obsessed with documentaries, or movies “based on a true story,” I feel that real life is much more interesting than fantasy. With on exception, the original Charlie and the Chocolate Factory with Gene Wilder. I do also love Hustle and Flow and Chris Rock’s Good Hair. I am enjoying introducing our older daughter to my favorite childhood movies like the Labyrinth and the Dark Crystal.

TV shows that I enjoy are typically hour long dramas that make you think. True Detectives, An American Crime, Ray Donovan, I must admit I like to be able to psychoanalyze characters so most of the shows that pull me in are a little intense.

Best Restaurant in Waco: The Mix cafe, avocado, feta and artichokes, oh my! Also I love a good sandwich, it is probably my favorite food genre. So Olive Brach is always good.

Favorite book/chapter/verse of the Bible: Book: Traveling Mercies by Anne Lamott. If you haven’t read it, run to your amazon cart and add it now! Also Henri Nouwen’ The Wounded Healer, Cheryl Strayed’s Wild and Viktor Frankl Man’s Search for Meaning. These books each changed my life and are probably the ones I ‘prescribe' most to my patients.  1 Corinthians 13:13

Something we might now know about you: I am a kiwi. Not the bird, or the fruit, but the nationality. New Zealander’s are called “Kiwis.” Also, I was on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire...It did not go well. I am an enneagram 4, who desperately wants to be a 9, but just cannot help myself in my 4ness. I am a cultural feminist and social justice advocate. I love hard and am passionate about people who hurt.

Meet Our Newest UBCer

Rowan Emmanuel Frise


birthday: 8/8/16

birth weight: 7 lbs 4 ounces

birth height: 19.5 inches

enneagram number: 6

Information From Pastor Emily

This Summer our Branch and Root classes have been learning how to Serve like the Savior!  We have learned a lot of valuable lessons by studying Philippians 2 and Christ’s example for us of having an ATTITUDE of humility, paying ATTENTION to the needs of others and taking ACTION to help!  In an effort to make sure that we are ready to take ACTION when we see someone in need, last week we assembled Care Kits to keep in our car so that when we see someone who is hungry or hurting, we can be ready to help!  The kids had SUCH a great time putting these together and were SO excited to be able to share them with someone in need, that we thought others might want to be ready for ACTION, too!

To make your own Care Kit, here is what was included in ours and some ideas of other things you might want to include:

1 Reusable Water Bottle (The Dollar Store has BPA free, wide-mouth bottles for $1!)

1 Soft Cereal Bar (Most resources suggest soft over hard or chewy bars, due to potential dental problems)

1 Pack of Peanut Butter Crackers

1 Washcloth (This is suggested over wipes because it can be used over and over)

1 Sheet of Bandaids

1 Gallon Ziplock Bag (To easily carry items so that they aren’t effected by weather)

1 Handmade Card (Ours had an encouraging message printed on it so that the kids could write a note or simply draw a picture)

1 Bottle of Water (We attached ours to the Reusable Bottle with rubber bands)

Other items that you might want to include:

A Soft Toothbrush


Antibacterial Wipes (Alcohol-Free)


Gloves (Depending on Weather)






Things NOT to include:

Hand Sanitizer (Contains Alcohol...)

Mouthwash (Same reason…)

Beef Jerky (too hard to chew…)

There are a lot of great resources out there with ideas and tips, but here are two websites that I found particularly helpful when planning our Care Kits!  This kind of need is something that most of us cannot even imagine, so reading these posts from people who have been homeless or who have worked closely with those who are before you get started will give you the insight you need to be sure that you are giving the BEST help you can!

I hope that this has been helpful and has perhaps inspired you to make a batch of Care Kits for your car!  This doesn’t have to just be for the kids of UBC, but could be a great way for anyone in our community to be ready care for others.  To steal a line from Josh...UBC, may we be a people who have an ATTITUDE of humility, pay ATTENTION to the needs of others, and take ACTION to serve others like our Savior!

Work is Worship

Greeters: Will 

Coffee Makers: Emmy 

Mug Cleaners: Emma 

Money Counter: Anna Tilson 


  • Sunday Sermon: Luke 13:10-17 "Bent Under the Weight of Religion" 
  • Kindergarten Commission August 28th.  If you have a child going into Kindergarten and would like to be part of our commissioning service, please email 
  • We are gearing up for another school year which means we will resume our work with Ceasar Chavez middle school.  If you would like to mentor a student or serve the middle school in another capacity email 

Do you have an emergency and need to talk to a pastor? 

254 413 2611

Leadership Team

If you have a concern or an idea for UBC that you’d like to share with someone that is not on staff, feel free to contact one of our leadership team members. 

Chair- Jon Davis:

Joy Wineman:

Stan Denman:

David Wilhite:

Bridget Heins:

Sharyl Loeung:

Emma Wood: Emma Wood <>

UBC Finance Team

Do you have a question about UBC’s financial affairs? Please feel free to contact any of your finance team members.

Josh McCormick:

Hannah Kuhl:  

Justin Pond:

Anna Tilson:

Doug McNamee:


If you have concerns about staff and would like contact our human resources team, please feel free to email any of the following members.

Maxcey Blaylock:

Mathew Crawford:

Rob Engblom:

Ross Van Dyke:

Jared Gould: