We all know that buildings, including our homes, require continual care and sometimes complete renovations,, but have you ever thought of your life of faith as being “worked on” or “renovated”? In his letter to the Philippian Christians, the apostle Paul uses this idea of construction (or repair) upon the people of God. That we are, in a right way, a project, attended to by the Master Craftsman who in continuously caring for His creation, using the power of the Gospel to heal and reshape us into the people He is calling us to be. It’s what Paul calls in Philippians 1:6 “a good work” in us. Today, we continue our series on this “good work,” discovering what the Lord is up too in our lives. Welcome to all who join us for worship!
We all know that buildings, including our homes, require continual care and sometimes complete renovations, but have you ever thought of yourself as being “worked on” or “renovated” in your life of faith? In his letter to the Philippian Christians, the apostle Paul uses this idea of construction (or repair) upon the people of God. That we are, in a right way, a project, attended to by the Master Craftsman who is continuously caring for His creation, using the power of the Gospel to heal and reshape us into the people He is calling us to be. It’s what Paul calls in verse 6, a “good work” in us. Today, we begin a new series of messages on this “good work,” discovering what the Lord is up to in our lives. Welcome to all who join us for worship!
Today’s text reminds us that the Lord’s ways are not our ways (Isaiah 55:8), or, as the Yiddish proverb has it, “Man plans. God laughs.” Either way, we are reminded that the journey of life brings unplanned diversions or stops along the way. Yes, it’s important to plan, but it is just as important to be flexible with those plans, recognizing our own limitations in controlling the present or predicting the future. Think about some of the diversions or stops (good and bad) you’ve experienced in your journey of faith. How has the Lord led you through these times? What have you learned about His love and provision for you? Where has your thinking about Jesus been challenged by your experiences? Share with someone today your story of faith and how the Lord has worked in your life during the “unplanned!”
Text: is Isaiah 40:1-11 Description: A comfort stop. Even on the best of trips (and most certainly the worst) we need comfort stops along the
Much of the ADVENTure in following Jesus is about how His Word shapes and forms us into a distinct people with Advent hope. What are places of false hope? How about politics, career, spouse, and retirement? What else? How are these and other places of false hope contrasted against the Lord’s unending presence in our lives? How does living between the Advents shape us to be people of hope? How does the Lord Himself shape us? Consider these questions as you consider what it means to be a People of ADVENTure!
Are you an adventurous person? Are you willing to try new foods or a new vacation destination? Do you sometimes mix up your route to work or perhaps try a new genre of music? Why or why not? What keeps you from deviating from what you know, if even for a moment?Sometimes adventure is hard to come by. We get into routines and routines are hard to break—they’re comfortable and predictable. And we love comfort and predictability! So, beginning this week, we’ll look at the invitation from Jesus to go on an adventure with Him, a journey which promises us that there will be no routine or comfort, only the reality that He is leading the way and calling us to come and follow. So pack your bags (bring lots of faith with you!) and join us as we learn what it means to be “People of ADVENTure.”
The three parables at the end of Matthew 25 encourage us to love and look for Jesus’ second Advent all the while laboring until He returns. We are “watching, witnessing, and working!” We may not, however, be successful or popular by the standards of the world, but by the Lord working through us, we are made profitable servants in His Kingdom.
How good are you at waiting, being patient, letting things flow naturally? It’s tough, isn’t it? In a microwave world we want it yesterday. But in our text today, we learn the importance of a follower of Jesus learning to watch and wait for His return. Where we hoped it would have happened yesterday, the Lord tells us only to be prepared, but nothing more. Listen in as we explore “watching and waiting” and being prepared for the return of Jesus!
No one sees the advantage of being at the bottom—until you start to understand Jesus. Then and only then does it become clear Christ is “good news for losers.”
The worst bondage is the kind that the prisoner does not recognize. She thinks she is free, yet she is really a slave. The religious people of the day thought they were free, but they were actually enslaved to sin and Satan. They would not face the truth, and it was the truth alone that could set them free. Do you know this truth? What forms of enslavement vie for your soul? Discuss with a close friend how Jesus and His Word are “chain breakers,” freeing us to live for Him and the good of our neighbor.
In this week’s message, Pastor Tom looks at Jesus’ well-known saying, “Render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s and render unto God what is God’s.” In an election year what are the implications for us in relation to the government and to our neighbor? Are our loyalties to “church and state” at odds with one another or is there a way to be both a faithful follower of Christ and a faithful citizen, regardless where we live?
The Christian life is a feast, not a funeral, and all are invited to come. Second Corinthians 5:20 tells us we are Christ’s ambassadors, “as though God were making his appeal through us.” We are the invitation bearers, the ones privileged to call others to the feast.
In our text today from the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus confronts the religious hypocrisy of the day while calling the faithful to a life of fruitful discipleship. What context do you find yourself in? Who is in your sphere of influence? Where is Jesus calling you to serve His Kingdom? Listen in as we discover more about the Son of God who came to save us and send us forth into the world!
It’s impossible to live without dealing with authority! Whether it is answering to the authority of others or stewarding the authority given to us, we all deal with the issue on a daily basis. In today’s text, Jesus exposes the hypocrisy of the religious leaders and establishes the rightful authority of God’s Kingdom. What does this mean for us today? Join us as we explore this challenging text and see what powerful truths it holds for each of us.
As disciples of Jesus we are privileged to be in the service of the King. Yet, that privilege does not bring us the best seats at the concert or make us first in line to board an airplane. The privilege of serving the King is a privilege of attitude, an attitude that doesn’t look for personal gain, but instead looks to make eternal investments in the Kingdom. Where has Christ called you to make eternal investments? Have you ever stumbled into believing that you are serving in order to be rewarded? Have you ever grown weary of laboring in the King’s vineyard? Take your joys and frustrations of service to the King in prayer!
In this week’s message, Pastor Tom explores Jesus’ teaching on forgiveness and the power of “putting it into practice” in our daily lives. Then Peter
It’s hard to be humble in a world where humility is in short supply, isn’t it? But Jesus reminds us in Matthew 18 of the importance of cultivating this characteristic in our lives. Listen in as Jesus teaches the disciples and us about learning this lost art of living in community with others
This week we wrap up Romans 12 and the application that our beliefs inform our behavior. Last week, we considered our actions in relation to God and as a response to the Gospel of Jesus. This week, we look at our actions in relationship to one another in the Church and the world around us.
What We believe informs our behavior. We act based upon what we know or believe to be true both in faith and in life. In our text today from Romans 12, the Apostle Paul challenges us to consider not only what we know about God, but how what we know shapes our behavior towards the world today.