Church is a body of people, not just a building

We believe that church is more than a building or a service. We believe that church is a family. At White Rock Fellowship, you will find a bunch of imperfect people who are really trying to love each other and really trying to follow Jesus.


 Mission & Vision


Our mission is to be a community of love and acceptance where families can come as they are to meet for genuine worship, and to experience the living God.



Genuine worship springs from the heart. It’s not canned, it’s not robotic. It’s organic and individuals all express worship differently.



We believe in Jesus, and He is the head of our church. We focus on the core principles of Christianity, rather than getting lost in the details.



Children’s Ministry
Teen’s Ministry
Women’s Ministry
Men’s Ministry
ACTS Groups



---Coming Events

FREE Kids Clothing Giveaway

September 7
White Rock Fellowship

Extraordinary Women’s Tea

 September 14
White Rock Fellowship



 September 27-29
 Turkey Run State Park


--- From The Blog


A Living Sacrifice – Answers and Reflections

Romans 12:1-2 (NIV)

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—His good, pleasing and perfect will.”

The What?

  • The Book of Romans is a letter, written by the apostle Paul (Rom. 1:1).
  • Paul wrote this letter to “all in Rome who are loved by God and called to be saints” (Rom. 1:7). This refers to the church at Rome who were mostly Gentiles (non-Jews). The Roman Church also included a Jewish minority (deduced from Rom. 4:1; Rom. 9-11).
  • According to Rom. 15:25-27, Paul was on his way to Jerusalem. He had received a collection or offering from the churches in Macedonia and Achaia “for the poor among the saints in Jerusalem” (Rom. 15:26). The believers in Jerusalem were very poor, and Paul was personally delivering the collection he had received for them. Based on Rom. 15:28, Paul was planning to go through Rome on his way to Spain after his visit to Jerusalem. Based on these events, and the mention of Phoebe (Rom. 16:1), Gaius – Paul’s host (16:23; 1 Cor. 1:14), and Erastus (Rom 16:23; 2 Tim. 4:20), the most likely place of writing is believed to be Corinth or neighboring Cenchrea in early A.D. 57. See also Acts 20:2-3.
  • Paul wrote his letter to the Roman Church:
    • To prepare for his visit to Rome and mission to Spain (Rom. 1:10-15; 15:22-29)
    • To present the message of salvation to the Roman Church (Rom. 1:14-17)
    • Based on Rom. 14:1-6, the Jewish believers still felt obligated to observe the feasts and dietary laws, causing friction between them and the Gentile believers. Paul explains that in God’s plan of redemption there is “no difference between Jew and Gentile” (Rom. 10:12).
  • The overall theme of Romans is the message of the Gospel – God’s plan of redemption and righteousness for all mankind (Rom. 1:16-17).
  •  “Therefore:”
    • When we run into the word “therefore,” it is important for us to understand why it is there for. This always matters for the immediate context.
    • Rom. 12:1 opens with “Therefore,” letting us know that what follows represents a logical sequence to the preceding discussion.
    • In chapters 1-11, Paul presented the Gospel. In a manner of speaking, he had presented his “what” and “so what.” Beginning with chapter 12, he presents his “now what.” We’ll revisit this shortly.
  • God’s mercy:
    • See Rom. 8:35-39, 9:15f, 11:30-32
    • As mentioned above, leading up to Rom. 12:1, Paul has been presenting the message of God’s salvation. At its core is God’s love, compassion and mercy for us.
    • Here, Paul is saying: “Because of God’s mercy for us, …” Another way of saying it: “Since God has shown us so much mercy through His plan of redemption, …”
  • PARISTEMI – Potential meanings of the word in the New Testament:
    • “to make available,” or “to put at someone’s disposal” (e.g., Matt. 26:53).
    • “to present someone or something to someone” (e.g., Luke 2: 22, Col. 1:22)
    • “to arrive” or “to come” (e.g., Mark 4:29)
    • “to stand near” or “to be present” (e.g., Mark 14:47)
    • “to give help” (e.g., Rom. 16:2)
    • “to oppose” or “to take a stand” (e.g., Acts 4:26)
    • “to prove” or “to present evidence” (e.g., Acts 24:13)
    • “to stand trial before” (e.g., Acts 27:24)
    • “to bring near” or “to place beside” (e.g., 1 Cor. 8:8)Of these, what fits the context best are either “to put at someone’s disposal” or “to present someone to someone.” It can also be a combination of the two. Paul was exhorting his readers to give themselves over to God, to put themselves at His disposal. See 1 Cor. 6:19f.
  • “Living sacrifice” – The word “body” is perhaps best understood as “being” or “persona.” It is not just referring to the physical body, but the whole person (mind, spirit and body). The word “living” is a continuous form of expression. The idea here is an ongoing, repeated and continuous dedication of the whole being to God. In contrast to the Old Testament worship that involved the sacrifice of bulls and goats, believers are to continually offer to God all that they are – to place their fullness at God’s disposal every living moment, to give themselves to God completely and in every way.
  • “true and proper worship” – There is considerable debate about the meaning of this term. Paul seems to say that believers truly worship God (“in spirit and in truth” – John 4:23) when they fully give themselves over to Him on an ongoing basis. Worship is not simply external (old sacrificial system, singing, praising, reciting psalms, going to church, etc.), but holistically involves the full being (attitude, mind, heart, motives, actions, etc.). Believers that live their lives fully dedicated to God and His Lordship, live a life of worship.
  • “conform to the pattern of this world” – The Greek word for “conform to the pattern” here is suschematizo, which refers to forming out of a mold. Think, for example, of pouring hot metal in a mold to form a defined shape. And, the Greek word for “world” here is not kosmos, but aion which refers to “age.” In Richard Trench’s book, “Synonyms of the New Testament” (pp. 229-230), Trench writes: “…Aion includes all the thoughts, opinions, maxims, speculations, impulses, and aspirations present in the world at any given time…” The Message translates this as: “Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit in to it without even thinking.” In other words, don’t become indistinguishable from the unbelievers by believing, acting and living as they do.
  • “be transformed” – The Greek word used here is metamorphoo, from which we get our English word “metamorphose.” Think of the metamorphosis of a butterfly. That is an utter transformation. It is a visible, drastic, startling and total change from one state into a new one.
  • “renewing your mind” – Inner transformation begins with mind transformation. It is a new mind, one that is not based on a worldly mold, or on old ways of thinking, but one that is upward focused. Paul writes to the Colossians (3:1-2): “Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you have died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.”
  • This new heavenly mind-focus will lead to renewal and transformation. One cannot think in the old ways and expect to be transformed. For example, a “dog-eat-dog” mindset does not lead to transformation. Responding hatefully, angrily, vengefully does not bring about inner change. As long as we hold on to the old ways of thinking and behavior, we cannot experience transformation.
  • The single Greek word, dokimazo, is translated to “test and approve” in NIV. In a manner of speaking, it involves authentication and validation as a jeweler would examine a precious stone to determine if it is a genuine jewel and to establish its quality. In this verse, Paul is saying that a renewed mind that leads to inner transformation is required to discern God’s will as it pertains to the transformed believer’s present reality. A mind that is not set on God cannot discern or accept His will, desire and purpose. On the other hand, a mind that is fixed on things above can scrutinize the leadings and promptings of the Holy Spirit and recognize them as the genuine will and guidance of God.

The So What?

  • In Rom. 1-11, Paul presented the Gospel to the Romans. He outlined God’s plan of redemption, His love, His mercy, His forgiveness, His righteousness and His holiness. He explained what was meant by John 3:16: “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” In Rom. 5:8, Paul wrote: “Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man… But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” These words are profound. Pause and think about them for a moment. Would you lay down your life to save a good friend that you love? Maybe. Now, would you lay down your life to save a murderer? Would you allow an only son to lay down his life for a murderer? Paul was explaining how God had done just that for us – not when we deserved it, but when we were least deserving. That demonstrates His love and His mercy for us. Given all that He had done, how should we respond? “THEREFORE, … in view of God’s mercy …” Beginning with Rom. 12:1, Paul talks about how we should therefore respond to God’s amazing grace. Paul urges the believers to give their entire beings over to God, to let Him rule them completely, to put all that they are at His disposal – not just once, but continuously, iteratively, every living moment of every day. God sacrificed His Son for us. We are strongly urged to sacrifice our desires, wants, needs, plans, hopes, aspirations, work, family, our all by surrendering completely to God’s ongoing, daily rulership. Paul wrote to the Colossians (3:17): “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus…”
  • Ancient Rome was pagan. They followed many gods. Believers were seen as cult members, anti-social, anti-Roman. Christians were tortured and systematically murdered. It would have been a drastic and very dangerous change for a Roman to become a Christian. And, it could have even been deadly for them to not conform to the Roman way of life and to stand out as transformed believers. Paul still called upon them not to conform to the worldly mold, to renew their minds, to be transformed, and to respond to God’s mercy and grace by giving themselves over to God.
  • Without mind-renewal and life-transformation, it is not possible to know the will of God and discern His ways. Knowing and discerning the will of God requires the surrender of our will to God’s rulership.

The Now What?

What really hit home for me this week was the message of transformation and its foundation on giving my life over to God completely and renewing my mind.

Real transformation is:

  • Metamorphic. In a manner of speaking, it is molecular in nature. It is drastic. It encompasses all that we are. A transformed butterfly is a new creation. God calls us to be transformed. This transformation results in a new mind, a new life, a new purpose, and a new creation.
  • Not of the world. This transformation goes against the worldly mold; it is not compatible with it at all. A renewed mind cannot feed on lust, anger, hatred, vengeance, self-gratification, self-righteousness, self-glorification. A renewed mind feeds on the Holy Spirit, God’s word, God’s love, God’s mercies, God’s ways, God’s Person. It is a mind that is constantly discerning and confirming the genuine will of God.
  • Highly visible. You cannot be transformed in secret. Someone who once saw a slimy worm will now see a beautiful butterfly. You cannot hide real transformation. It will burst through you like light bursts through a dark room. You become “the light of the world” (see Matt. 5:14-16). That is when those around you will notice and ask you to explain the new you. Evangelism is the living out of a truly transformed life.


A Living Sacrifice – Worksheet

Romans 12:1-2 (NIV)

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—His good, pleasing and perfect will.”

For our first study, we will look at Rom. 12:1-2. There is so much depth here, and I strongly encourage you to take the time this week to unpack these verses, think about them, and listen to what God is saying to you throughout the week. Write it all down, regardless of how long or short it may be. There is something about disciplining yourself to actually write down your answers and thoughts. It will be that much more effective for you. Go with me on this journey and try it out, and let’s compare notes at the end of each week. You have a full week to work through it, so take your time and enjoy the process. I will publish my answers every Monday, one week after I post the questions. Feel free to reach out to me anytime if you have any questions or get stuck.

The What?

  • What is the Book of Romans and who wrote it?
  • Who was the original audience (recipients of the writing)?
  • When was it written and where was the likely place of writing?
  • What was the likely purpose/reason for the writing?
  • What is the overall theme of Romans?
  • What is the significance of the word “Therefore” at the beginning of this passage?
  • What is meant by “in view of God’s mercy?” What is the significance of mercy here?
  • In Greek, the word “offer” is paristemi (transliterated). Try to research the potential meanings of this word as used in the New Testament? What does it really mean in the context of this passage?
  • What did the following phrases mean to the audience at the time of this writing? Think about these phrases from their perspective.
    • “living sacrifice”
    • “true and proper worship”
    • “conform to the pattern of this world”
    • “transformed”
    • “renewing your mind”
  • What was the connection between “renewing your mind” and being “transformed?”
  • What did it mean to “test and approve” God’s will? Look it up in other versions and research it.

The So What?

  • Why did it matter to understand the importance of the word “Therefore” here? How does that add to the immediate context of these two verses?
  • Given what you have learned so far, what did it mean for the original readers not to be conformed to the patterns of this world but be transformed by the renewing of their minds (importance and impact on their lives)?
  • Based on your research, was the author helping his audience discern God’s will for their lives?

The Now What?

  • List the top 3 ways that this passage spoke to you this week?
  • Pick at least one of these and think about how you would go about living it out in your life.
  • Do you find yourself going along with the ways and teachings of the world? If so, how, and what should you do about it?
  • What does it mean to you personally to be transformed by the renewing of your mind?
  • Based on what you have learned and what the Holy Spirit has placed on your heart this week, what must you do to align with the will of God in your own life?

If you have questions or suggestions, please let me know. May God bless you this week as you study His word.


How To Read The Bible

Language is one of those things we often take for granted. We use it every day, whether in written form, verbal or artistic expression, or what we call “body language,” or physical interaction. It embodies history, culture, background, peoples, traditions and lifestyle. In fact, it is considerably more complicated than we often realize. Let’s take English and look at a few examples of word combinations and their meanings.

  • Same three basic words with three different meanings based on their combinations:
    • “There you are!” (I’ve been looking for you and have just found you)
    • “You are there.” (You are in a specified location, place or position)
    • “Are you there?” (Questioning your presence, or your location)
  • Cultural, historical or technical impact:
    • “Elvis has left the building.” Before Elvis’ time, this would have been a simple statement that a person by the name of Elvis had literally left the specified building. Today it means “it’s all over” or “the show has come to an end.”
    • “Google it” or “Bing it” were meaningless before the Internet and search engines. And so was “ungoogleable.” That is a modern word. Look it up.
    • “Corinthianize” – Be immoral. Based on the old city of Corinth and its immorality.
  • Expressions or Idioms:
    • “A hot potato” can literally refer to a potato that is hot, or it can refer to a controversial or highly disputed issue or topic, or to a situation that nobody wants to handle.
    • “A piece of cake” can literally refer to a slice of cake, or it can refer to an activity that is simple or easy.
    • The man is “sitting on the fence” can mean that the man is literally sitting on a fence, or that the man cannot make up his mind about a given topic or decision.
The above word combinations are only a few examples of thousands that make up our English language today. How do we know what is meant by a given statement or expression? We rely heavily on context. For example, if someone hands you a plate with a potato on it and says “It’s a hot potato,” you would hear “The potato on the plate is hot. Be careful with it.” If, on the other hand, in the middle of a conversation, that same person said “It’s a hot potato,” you would hear “It’s a controversial topic or difficult issue that nobody wants to address.” The context clarifies the meaning and intent of the language. Without it, the meaning may be ambiguous. And that is using our current spoken mother tongue.
The languages of the Bible are many centuries removed from us. Just as our English language encapsulates culture, tradition, and history, ancient Hebrew, Aramaic and Koine Greek were similarly shaped. To isolate the language from its history can lead to drastic misinterpretations and misunderstandings. To complicate matters, we also have to consider multiple other factors, such as transcription (how the manuscripts were copied and preserved), and interpretation. That is one reason we have multiple versions today (KJV, NIV, NAV, etc.). Ancient manuscripts had a single continuous string of characters without any punctuation, sentence breaks, paragraphs, or titles. As an example, see the picture linked to this post that shows Papyrus 46, an ancient Greek Manuscript of 2 Cor. 11:33 – 12:9. As an illustration, let’s take this very simple English continuous string: “GODISNOWHERE.” You can read it as “God is nowhere” or as “God is now here.” How do we determine the author’s intent? Context is again a primary factor for interpretation.
Given the above (and more), it is understandable that we sometimes struggle to interpret and understand the Bible today. As a new believer in 1979, I struggled to understand the meaning of Scripture and did not know how to read and understand the Bible. I had decided to read the Bible from start to finish, but then quickly got overwhelmed when I got to Leviticus.
A few examples:
  • Lev. 19:19: “Do not wear clothing woven of two kinds of material.” Most of my clothes were of mixed fabrics (20% Polyester, 80% Cotton and so forth). Was I going against God’s word by continuing to wear these clothes?
  • Lev. 19:28 speaks against tattoos. I had Christian friends with tattoos of crosses and “Jesus is Lord” on their arms. Were they sinning by having a “Jesus is Lord” tattoo?
  • Amos 4:6: “… I have given you cleanness of teeth…” Does this mean I do not need to worry about my yellowed teeth?
  • Hosea 10:8: What is meant by “high places?”
  • Hosea 10:9: What is a “trained heifer?”
  • Gen. 49:29: What does “gathered to his people” mean?
  • And, even in the New Testament, 1 Cor. 11:13 – “Is it proper for a woman to pray to God with her head covered?” Does this mean that all women should cover their heads in church, or even when they pray? Why?
At the time, I did not know that “cleanness of teeth” was actually an idiom or saying that referred to starvation as opposed to a blessing. It was a judgment that people’s teeth would remain unstained by food because they would not have food to eat. Like many of my peers, I simply read the Bible at face-value and glossed over the difficult parts that I could not understand. I even thought that by asking questions, I was possibly showing a lack of faith, and that I simply needed to read the passage, believe it and act on it. But, this became an unsustainable model for studying the Bible.
I did not know if I was correctly handling the word of truth (2 Tim. 2:15). I struggled with 1 Peter 3:15 – “… Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have…” How could I give a good answer if I did not have the answers to my own questions?! Then, that same verse hit me hard. “Always be prepared” meant that I had to do something to prepare myself. To what purpose? “To give an answer to everyone who asks.” That meant three things. First, it implied that asking was not only acceptable, but expected. Secondly, it implied that the question should be answered. Thirdly, it clearly stated that I needed to “be prepared” which implied digging, asking questions, searching, studying, discovering and truly being a student of God’s word.
In the early 1980’s there was no Internet, no Google or Bing, and I did not have easy access to resources. I did not even have a concordance until the mid-1980’s. But, I poured into the Bible, cross-referencing verses and passages, talked to other believers, and read what I could find. Over time, I realized that I could miss so much by simply reading the Bible at face-value, or by not using the brain God had given me. A system of study developed that I still use today, and it is centered around CONTEXT.
Before I explain the system, let me just say that Scripture is multi-dimensional. This means that God can take any part of His word and use it to get our attention. We do not need to be scholars or multi-lingual to be blessed by God’s word. God’s word is alive and active (Heb. 4:12) and will accomplish what God desires (Isa. 55:11). Do not be afraid of reading the Bible, or of asking questions. “… The Holy Spirit … will teach you all things…” (John 14:26). Here are a few simple suggestions to help you:
  • Before you start reading, say a simple prayer “Lord, please help me understand your word and apply it in my life every day. Open my eyes to see, my ears to hear and my heart to receive what You have to say to me today.”
  • Turn off your phone, your TV, and block distractions and spend time reading the Bible.
  • Get a notebook and use it as a journal of sorts. Use a new page for every day, date it, write down the Bible chapter and verses, and then jot down any thoughts or questions that come to mind while you are reading.
  • Pray
You do not need to be an expert scholar to follow the above steps. God will draw near to you as you draw near to Him (James 4:8; Heb. 10:22).
Having said that, please keep in mind that the Bible that you are reading, regardless of version, is based on a lot of hard work to interpret and translate from the original Biblical languages, taking into account factors like culture, linguistics, history, geography, archaeology, and much more. And that in itself is relying on the scholarly interpretation that went into the English edition that you now have. It is therefore important to ask questions, dig deeper, and search the meaning of verses. Why? This will deepen your own understanding of God’s word and who He is. It will help you appreciate the significance, background, history and fuller meaning of what you read. And, the more you understand, the better you will be able to apply it in your own life. Ultimately, that is the end goal. It is not about amassing head-knowledge, but about applying God’s revelations in our daily lives.
To that purpose, I will now share my system of study that can also help you with your understanding of Scripture and its application in your life. Whenever I read any Biblical passage, I always ask three primary questions and then use a methodical approach to unpack each question for that passage.
This question seeks to uncover the background, history, geography, people, culture, language, terms, sayings and purpose. I ask questions such as:
  • What is this writing?
  • Who wrote it?
  • Who was the audience?
  • Where was it written or sent to?
  • What was going on at the time?
  • What do we know about the location (geography, culture, economy, history, traditions, etc.)?
  • What did the words mean (example: “white teeth” refers to starvation)?
  • Why was it written?
  • What else can I learn about the time, people, history, background, etc.?
These are not exhaustive questions. I’m sure you’ll think of other “what?” questions. Ask them. Then research them. Look online or use reputable references to search for details. In the process, weigh what you read. Not everything published is accurate and true. Look for multiple sources and consolidate your answers to give you a good synopsis of the “WHAT?” as described above. If you are still unclear, seek help from others. Compare notes. Reach out and ask your leaders. Don’t give up on finding an answer. And don’t get discouraged.
This question takes what you learned above to the practical level at the time of writing. By combining the WHAT and the SO WHAT, you uncover the CONTEXT of the writing. I ask questions such as:
  • What was the outcome of this writing at that time?
  • What difference did it make to the people who read this back then?
  • How did the audience interpret and understand this passage with respect to their circumstances and environment (as learned from the WHAT above)?
  • How did it change their lives? What did they stop doing? Start doing? Continue doing?
  • What was the significance of the writing to their faith and its development?
Again, these are not exhaustive questions. The main point is to grasp the broader context of the writing. This is very important because it will guide you in correctly handling God’s word, both in studying and in teaching (2 Tim. 2:15).
Let’s use a silly English language example to illustrate this point. If someone tells you “I’m going to let the cat out of the bag,” do you yell at them for being cruel to the cat by keeping it in a bag?! Of course, not! You don’t, because you understand the CONTEXT of what was said. You understand that it’s not literal, but an expression that means “I’m going to tell you a secret.” In a similar way, when you grasp the full context of Scripture, it helps you in interpreting and understanding its meaning. To go back to the “white teeth” example, once you know that it refers to starvation, you will never use that passage as an excuse for not going to the dentist. Believe it or not, I’ve actually been told that by someone who had completely misunderstood the meaning of this expression!
As a rule, teach yourself to think contextually, and not in isolation. When you see a lone verse, look it up in its full context. It will significantly deepen your understanding and application of the Bible.
Once you have the context defined and understood, you can then apply it to your own life. I ask questions such as:
  • How does this passage apply to me today?
  • Based on the full context of this passage, how can I apply its principles and grow in my own life?
  • What do I need to change in my own life? Stop doing? Start doing? Continue doing?
  • What is God saying to me through this passage?
  • How do I overcome the challenges that this passage addresses directly and that the original audience struggled with in their own way and time?
  • What are the principles that I can apply in my life every day based on what I have learned in this passage?
  • How do I pray through this passage?
Don’t be afraid of digging, searching deeper, reaching out for help and asking God to help you. “… Seek and you will find…” (Mat. 7:7).
“Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing His will, and may He work in us what is pleasing to Him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.” (Heb. 13:20f).

Highly recommended reading:
“How to Read the Bible for All Its Worth” by Gordon D. Fee and Douglas Stuart.        




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Daycare with Biblical Principles

We provide daycare that is safe, affordable, and Biblically sound. Your children will be in a loving and nurturing environment, where Godly principles are taught in a fun and easy to learn manner.



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