Sunday, November 25, 2007
1 Thessalonians 5:18
I love thanksgiving! It is one of my favorite holidays. I don’t know if it’s the time with family, or the food, or the positive mindset of thanksgiving. It is probably the combination of these that make it such a special day.
In my reflections this Thanksgiving I thought about how thankful I am for our church. I love what God is doing at Christian Life! We gather together and God shows up. It’s awesome!
I am profoundly thankful for a church family. What a wonderful group of people that share the good and the difficult parts of life together. People that gather to travel together on their spiritual journey. You guys are the best!
I want to encourage you this week and let you know God loves you and so do I. You are important to God and to our church family. If you ever get discouraged remember the adage “God don’t make no junk.” He created you just the way you are, for this moment in history, to do and be who he called you to be. Take time to thank God for making you you. Meditate on these passages:
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made ... All the days ordained for me were written in your book. (Psalm 139:14, 16)
Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? (1 Corinthians 6:19)
Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. (Romans 8:33-34)
Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever. (Psalm 118:29)
If anything is excellent or praiseworthy — think about such things. (Philippians 4:8)
Friday, November 16, 2007
1 John 1:9
I’m having trouble with something so I thought I would use this week’s blog to ask you what you think.
In our Draw Near To God series we spent a couple of week’s worth of sermons on the subject of pornography. I feel that we talked fairly openly about the subject and how it affects up to 49% of Christian families. I can’t tell you how many people came up to me or emailed me to thank me for taking the time to talk about such a sensitive subject. Trust me, it wasn’t easy and I always enjoy positive feedback.
But here is what is troubling me. A lot of people were happy we tackled the subject but very few responded for help. I have to admit I wasn’t expecting a lot of thank you's, I was expecting a lot of people looking for help. Maybe people in our church don’t struggle with pornography? Maybe we defy the odds? Or maybe we aren’t being completely honest.
I know this is a sensitive and private subject. The devil would love to keep it that way. Maybe you are trying to deal with this on your own? But as we learned in our video, this is something you can’t overcome on your own. You need the power of God and the accountability of a friend or small group.
We are looking to begin some anonymous support groups at the beginning of the New Year to help those that struggle with and those who are victims of pornography. But will anybody come? I hope they do.
I want to hear what you think concerning this matter. What do you have to say? Please free to post your comments
Sunday, November 11, 2007
2 Corinthians 5:6-8
This past week our church family lost a dear brother, Jeff Taylor. Our heart and prayers are with Debbie, his wife of 25 years, along with Jeff’s mom and dad and the entire family. Jeff’s life and passing is a reminder that this is not all there is, that this is not our forever home, and someday we will step into eternity for an appointment with God.
Even through his illness, Jeff had a passion for the Lord and His work. You could sense his heart to know God. You could sense his desire to serve God with his life. Now Jeff is healthy, whole, and strong in the presence of God. It is safe to say that Jeff’s desires are satisfied as he experiences God face to face.
As we talked about last week the spiritual things in life are the most important because they last for eternity. In the busyness of life we can forget or ignore the spiritual. Someday each of us will stand before God to give an account. Will you be one who chooses to draw near to God in this life so that you can enjoy Him forever?
We were created for a relationship with God. We were created for an eternity with Him. God “has planted eternity in the human heart.” Ecclesiastes 3:11 (NLT) Nothing this temporary life can offer will satisfy. Are you drawing near to God? Remember you get for eternity what you desire in this life.
While we grieve the loss of our friend Jeff we don’t grieve without hope (1 Thessalonians 4:13) like the world because we know someday we will be worshipping with him again, this time around the Throne!
Sunday, November 04, 2007
Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.
I have enjoyed our fall small group study at Christian Life, Drawing Near by John Bevere. I appreciate the many who are taking the spiritual journey together to draw near to God. I know that God honors your heart cry for Him and will in turn reveal Himself in even greater ways to you and to our church family.
One of the main components of drawing near to God is our time with Him. As with any relationship, our time with God is valuable. Spending time with God allows us to grow close to Him. We can say that we desire to draw near to God but if we don’t spend time seeking Him our desire will never become a reality.
In our jam-packed lives how do we find time for God on a daily basis? The key is consistency.
- Have a consistent time every day that you meet with God.
- Have a consistent place where you spend that time.
- Have a consistent routine for your time together.
In the weekend services to come I will be talking about how to spend quality time with God. In this blog let me share with you something that helps me on those days I miss my consistent time, place, and routine. In the busyness of the calling of being a pastor and the sometimes overwhelming schedule of a young family there are days that it is difficult to find time to spend with God. So, on my palm pilot each day at the end of the day I have scheduled the phrase, “It’s not too late.” This simple phrase reminds me that it’s not too late to pray, or maybe to read a verse, or even to journal a thought before bed.
It’s never too late in the day to spend time with God. Even if you only have strength for a short prayer at the end of the day God is happy to hear from you. Remember God always loves you and enjoys His time with you!