We just launched our new website! Find a glitch? Let us know
March 22nd, 2018

Open House: Meet Austin Mustard Seed


Looking for a church is hard.
You have to go to a place you’ve never been and engage with people you don’t know. You are trying to learn if this is a safe place for you to be vulnerable, grow and share life.
Open House is a one-night event where you will:
— Eat together with members of Austin Mustard Seed Staff and Leadership
— Learn the story of Austin Mustard Seed
— Explore ways you might grow and serve by being a part of Austin Mustard Seed
Open House is for anyone who is new to Austin Mustard Seed or is looking for a church home.
Food and childcare are available, to please RSVP.
Directions and RSVP HERE on Facebook

March 20th, 2018

Simplicity: A Simple Way to Get Started


In this week’s sermon, Shane introduce the idea of a habit audit as a first step toward practicing simplicity. Below are the instructions for how you do your own habit audit.


This week, we invite you to perform what is called a habit audit of your life rhythms and habits in order to better understand what you love and, thus, what is forming you.
For one week, keep a short and simple diary of your habits and patterns of life each day. You can keep a small notebook on your person for the week, or use digital journal. Make note of the amount of time spent on each activity. Take particular note of the things to which you commit time, energy, and money.
Excerpts from such a diary may read something like:
15 minutes making coffee
30 minutes on social media
1 hour working out
2 hours of TV shows
2 hours and $30 at a restaurant with friends
1 hour and $25 shopping online
With the week and your diary complete, sit down to ask yourself a few questions:

The above audit was taken from Practicing the Way

Resources
March 19th, 2018

Simplicity (2018.03.18 Sermon)


Shane Blackshear finishes our Lenten series on Patterns: Five Habits for Weaving a Life Like Jesus with a sermon on Simplicity.
Resources/Quotes:

To share in the learning of these habits with each other, we have created this reflection guide. This offers all of us space to reflect on each of these habits, as well as guide our Community Group discussions during the season of Lent. Printed versions are also available in liturgy.
Join a Community Group to continue the discussion.
Subscribe to the podcast via iTunes

Podcast
March 13th, 2018

Reading the Bible: How to Get Started


The Bible was written over thousands of years in multiple languages on three different continents. It’s big, broad and sweeping. Trying to figure out where to start can be overwhelming.
Our hope for everyone this week is simple: read three chapters of John per day. Start the day of your community group so you can wrap up by community group next week and share your experience with others.
Beyond this week, the best way to approach reading the Bible is to define two simple goals:
1) Choose a Plan to Read the Bible. Starting at the beginning usually isn’t the best way…even though Genesis is great! Here are some options you might consider:

2) Make a Schedule. Once you choose a plan you can commit to how often. Some plans are designed for everyday to stay on track, while others offer more flexibility. Figure out what days and what times you will read and add them to your calendar. I’d recommend at least three days a week to get started so you have some consistency.


The simple two-step plan outlined above is helpful to get started, but reading the Bible offers opportunities to dive deep too. Here are some other resources you might find helpful along the way:

Resources
March 11th, 2018

Scripture (2018.03.11 Sermon)


John Chandler continues our Lent series on Patterns: Five Habits for Weaving a Life Like Jesus with a sermon on reading Scripture.
Resources/Quotes:

To share in the learning of these habits with each other, we have created this reflection guide. This offers all of us space to reflect on each of these habits, as well as guide our Community Group discussions during the season of Lent. Printed versions are also available in liturgy.
Join a Community Group to continue the discussion.
Subscribe to the podcast via iTunes

Podcast
March 4th, 2018

Confession (2018.03.04 Sermon)


April Karli continues our Lent series on Patterns: Five Habits for Weaving a Life Like Jesus with a sermon on Confession.
Resources/Quotes:

To share in the learning of these habits with each other, we have created this reflection guide. This offers all of us space to reflect on each of these habits, as well as guide our Community Group discussions during the season of Lent. Printed versions are also available in liturgy.
Join a Community Group to continue the discussion.
Subscribe to the podcast via iTunes

Podcast
March 4th, 2018

Confession: How to Get Started


This Sunday we talked about confession as a practice to help restore and heal broken relationships between us and others and us and God. Through confession we examine ourselves for faults or weaknesses we can surrender to God and embrace the love and forgiveness of Christ which leads to transformation.
Here are the steps we discussed for how to give and hear a confession.
How to confess?:

How to hear a confession?:

This is the prayer of forgiveness we ended with yesterday. You can modify this to pray over someone who has shared their confession with you adding their name to personalize it.

God, we know you love [name] as your daughter/son and that you have already forgiven her/him. We ask you to have mercy on [name]. Forgive her/him and deliver her/him from her/his sins. Build [name] up and strengthen her/him in your goodness. Help us bear with one another and forgive each other as you’ve forgiven us. Give her/him a clean heart, God, and remind her/him that she/he is yours so that she/he may serve you with a right spirit and a quiet mind, through Jesus Christ. Amen.

If your community group would like to practice the Rite of Forgiveness this week, here are some simple instructions

Form a large circle with the ends overlapping. Those two people facing each other will be the first to ask for and receive forgiveness. You can say, “[Name], for the ways I’ve wounded or hurt you, I ask your forgiveness.” Put it in your own words if you would like to. The person they’re facing responds, “[Name], I forgive you. Will you forgive me for how I’ve hurt you?” They’re forgiven and the pair embraces. Then everyone moves one person to the right where the ritual repeats itself until everyone in your group has had a chance to both ask for and receive forgiveness from everyone else. Include the kids too as they express interest in participating. Allow the Holy Spirit to work as things come up. End with some silence reflecting on the forgiveness you’ve all received.

Resources
February 26th, 2018

Fasting: How to Get Started


This Sunday, we talked about Fasting as a habit for living like Jesus.
Here are the steps we considered, with a few more guidelines below for extra measure:
1) Decide in advance when you will fast
A simple start would be to eat breakfast, and then fast through dinner, but most common is to fast from dinner one day to dinner the next. Choose a time where you don’t have other things going on during meal times.
2) Replace prep and eating time with prayer and reflection
We spend a lot of time eating, especially if we eat well. One of the main benefits of fasting is that we can redirect that time for intentional prayer and reflection. Use your normal prep and eating time during your fast to journal or go on a prayer walk.
3) Use your hunger to focus on your and soul rather than your belly
The time between your normal meals can be a difficult part of fasting as your body let’s you know it’s feeling neglected. Allow the needs your body is communicating to direct you to think about what needs your heart and soul have. Pay attention to the emotions you have as you experience the stress of hunger.
A few extra guidelines:
1) Continue to drink water during your fast.
2) If fasting might not be healthy for you, please don’t! If you are pregnant, have some other medical condition, or a history of unhealthy eating patterns, then consider other ways you could “fast” from something other than food this week.
One final word from Richard Foster in Celebration of Discipline:

Although the physical aspects of fasting intrigue us, we must never forget that the major work of scriptural fasting is the realm of the spirit. What goes on spiritually is much more important than what is happening bodily. You will be engaging in spiritual warfare that will necessitate using all the weapons of Ephesians 6. One of the most critical periods spiritually is at the end of the fast when we have a natural tendency to relax. But I do not want to leave the impression that all fasting is a heavy personal struggle — I have not found it so. It is also “…righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit” (Rom. 14:17).

Resources
February 25th, 2018

Fasting (2018.02.25 Sermon)


John Chandler continues our Lent series on Patterns: Five Habits for Weaving a Life Like Jesus with a sermon on Fasting.
Resources/Quotes:

To share in the learning of these habits with each other, we have created this reflection guide. This offers all of us space to reflect on each of these habits, as well as guide our Community Group discussions during the season of Lent. Printed versions are also available in liturgy.
Join a Community Group to continue the discussion.
Subscribe to the podcast via iTunes

Podcast
February 19th, 2018

Four Suggestions For Weaving a Habit of Gratitude

This Sunday in the sermon, Chris described that practice of gratitude. Gratitude is a fairly simple, yet valuable, way of forming a meaningful pattern of living like Jesus.
To help you get started this week, here are four suggestions for how to practice gratitude:
Gratitude Journal
Take a moment each day to recall three things for which you are grateful. In a journal, write down three things each day. As you write it down, take time to contemplate what you are grateful for. Try to be as specific and evocative as possible.
Send a card
Write a note a to person who you are grateful for. Try to be specific, naming something they did that you appreciate.
Have a conversation
Write a letter to a person you are grateful for, and describe why. Then call them or visit them and read them the letter.
Be Intentional!
Create a plan for gratitude for you and others at Austin Mustard Seed. Write out your intentions for how you will practice gratitude this week.
Describe, how, when, where and why you will practice. This is your chance to determine a practice that works for you!
Example: I will practice gratitude by keeping a gratitude journal. I will store this notebook next to my bed. Each night, right before I turn the lights out, I will write three things I’m grateful for. I will write at least one sentence describing each. I will do this to remind myself of how good God has been to me.

Resources