March 3, 2019: Answering Life's Pressing Questions

Titus series message 1

Text: Titus 1:1-3

In his opening words to Titus, Paul answers three crucial life questions that every Christian should be confident to answer: who am I, why am I here, and where am I going? In this letter, Paul casts a vision for a healthy church. He begins by helping each believer know his/her mandate and calling. 

February 24, 2019: Our Faithful Shepherd

Habakkuk series - Supplemental

Text: Psalm 23

Habakkuk models what appears to be an abrupt shift from wondering and waiting to praise and worship. He is a good example for us. When our hurt runs deep, it is only human to struggle, doubt, ask questions, and put our case to God. But if we linger too long in that territory, bitterness will surely settle in to our bones and we can possibly experience the Lord's discipline. The good news is that our Lord is a wonderful shepherd who is gracious, patient, and attentive to the smallest details of our lives (and in particular, our struggles and weaknesses). He will never leave us nor forsake us, and is diligent to complete His work in us as He brings us safely into His heavenly kingdom.

February 17, 2019: The Power of Praise

Habakkuk series message 3

Text: Habakkuk 3

Habakkuk moves from wondering where God is, to waiting and clinging to God‘s character and plan, to praising Him for the same. The power of praise is compelling and transformative! When we shift our focus from “me” to “Him” and worship Him not for what He does but for WHO HE IS, it is life-changing and brings great freedom.

February 10, 2019: Wisdom in the Wait

Habakkuk series message 2

Text: Habakkuk 2

Our introduction to Habakkuk saw him wondering where the Lord was in the chaos he was experiencing. This week we’ll see his posture in waiting, with much for us to learn and emulate. Even in the darkest valley, God’s truth and purposes are gloriously present even when we are unaware or do not fully comprehend it.

February 3, 2019: How Long, O Lord?

Habakkuk series message one

Text: Habakkuk 1 

Have you ever wondered, "God, where are you?!" Why do the evil prosper and why does He remain distant to those suffering? If so, you're in good company. Habakkuk had the same questions and lodged his complaint to God. He received an answer, but it wasn't what he was looking for. Things are going to get worse before they get better! This little book teaches us to trust God in the dark and know that He is sovereign and is far from aloof.

January 27, 2019: Kindness Starts Here!

Text: Titus 3:4-8

There is a lot of talk about kindness, being kind, paying it forward, etc. and, if you were to ask anyone on the street, most would say that being kind is a good thing. Yet we live in a very sarcastic, cutting, and cynical culture. Why is it so hard to live out something we all recognize as good? Perhaps it is because we are starting in the wrong place. Rather than beating ourselves up to be better, maybe we need to recognize that we just don’t have it in us, and see what God will do when we trust Him and step out in faith to be kind.

January 6, 2019: Abide!

Text: John 15:3-4

"Abide" will be a big theme in 2019 for us. It dovetails perfectly with our emphasis on personal discipleship. It's the antidote to annual resolutions which often fail after a month or two when we do things in our own strength and wisdom. The key is bearing fruit - apart from Christ, I can do nothing; the key to fruitfulness is abiding in Him. 

December 30, 2018: Travel Light

Advent 2018 - Temporary Tenant - message 4

Text: Philippians 3:20-21

Jesus occupied His manger and tomb, but for a moment, in bringing many sons to glory. Through faith in Him we are citizens of heaven, as God has called us to His eternal glory. This new year, let's look to and develop a longing for our heavenly inheritance as we ‘travel light’ in our upward journey. 

December 23, 2018: Forgive... WHO?

Advent 2018 - Temporary Tenant - message 3

Text: Ephesians 4:30-32

If grace defines Christ's coming, surely forgiveness is a prized result - as He destroyed the works of the devil. We are reconciled to God. We are forgiven of our sins but, with that blessing, comes responsibility: we are to forgive others just as God in Christ forgave us. We'll see why this is consistently true in Scripture, and we'll give practical steps we can all use as we carry this out in the power of the Spirit - especially related to those deep wounds which have caused rot in our souls for too long! 

December 16, 2018: Putting Grace Back in Christmas

Advent 2018 - Temporary Tenant - message 2

Text: II Corinthians 8:9

This time of year we hear a lot about peace, joy, and love - Jesus is definitely all about these things! But when do you hear people talk about grace at Christmas? "God and sinners, reconciled" - that's GRACE! Jesus came full of grace - "grace upon grace"! By being a temporary tenant in both His manger and tomb, God and sinners are being beautifully reconciled in Him. And God's will is that we receive His grace every day, that we live in it and that we give it to others! 

December 9, 2018: Call On Me

Advent 2018 Series - Temporary Tenant - message 1

The manger wasn't occupied long - no surprise there. But the tomb? No one expected that! The Son of God came as a temporary tenant so He could purchase for us the same privilege: pilgrims, passing through en route to a glorious inheritance which was purchased by the Lamb who came to destroy the works of the devil.

Text: Jeremiah 33:3

What do you think of when you read that someone called on the name of the Lord? It is a phrase we encounter often, but may not perceive its rich meaning and significance. In our first Advent message, we'll trace the usage of this concept throughout the Old & New Testaments. God delights when we call upon Him; in fact, it is a distinguishing mark for Christians! It is most appropriate to highlight this act during Advent season, for "all who call upon the name of the Lord will be saved." Indeed, as Christ followers, this is how we are now known. 

December 2, 2018: Help for the Hurting

Family Matters series message 4

Our final message in our Family Matters series is geared towards those needing the Lord's touch in their marriage. Practical advice for getting out of a tough spot. The counsel given is actually very helpful for all of us in our vertical relationship with Christ. It dovetails into our Advent series, as hope is something Messiah brought with His advent some two thousand years ago.

November 25, 2018: One Body, Many Parts

Family Matters series message 3

In considering the relationships within the household of God, we've examined the foundation for marriage and our mandate (each of us, individually) to love others well, whether in the context of marriage or otherwise. In the body of Christ, challenges faced by those not married are often lost on those who are married. We'll speak to this dynamic with an aim to enrich our unity as we affirm every believer as a valued member of the body of Christ and an integral part of God's work in our Jerusalem and to the ends of the earth. 

November 18, 2018: The Greatest of These

Family Matters series message 2

Love. It's what sets us apart from the world; or, at least, it's what should set us apart. The love we've received is like nothing the world has ever seen or experienced, and we are to walk in that love. When love is present in our relationships, it covers a multitude of sins and shortcomings. When it's absent or lacking, our problems and hurts are magnified. We'll draw from Paul and other sources to paint a picture of Christian love in all our relationships, and crescendo with a special message and call to husbands.

November 11, 2018: What He Said!

Family Matters series message 1

Text: Genesis 2:24

We're going to take a few weeks to talk about relationships within the church. In this installment, we’ll focus on marriage. Take a moment to read Genesis 2:24, which is the foundation for every marriage. The concepts we'll look at will be helpful to all of us - whether or not we're currently married. I'm very excited, not only for the content over the next several weeks, but also for the testimonies we have lined up to personalize and contextualize each message!

October 28, 2018: What's Holding You Back?

Jude series message 6

Text: Jude 24-25

Jude closes with one of the most well-known and beloved doxologies in the entire Bible. It's great to use it as a self-standing benediction, but leveraging its scope within its context is something we don't often see. Jesus has come. He's conquered the grave; the tomb is empty. All authority is His and He's with us until the very end. Yes, there are lies and deception and false teachers. Yes, there is opposition but we are called to rescue the perishing and help those who are struggling. What's holding you back from getting into the game? Fear? Insecurities? Your past? Feeling inadequate? God calls us to make disciples, He will guard us as we contend for the faith.

October 21, 2018: Advice to a Young Christian

Jude series message 5

Text: Jude 17-23

If I sat down with a young Christian who was looking for some basic advice on living his newfound faith, I'd pass along what Jude says. After listing, in the most vivid manner, the characteristics and behavior of these false teachers, Jude now sums all of that up before telling us what to do. Contending for the faith can take form in many different ways (i.e., apologetics), but we contend for the faith in the most practical and personal way when we live on a balanced diet of God's love and truth. We build ourselves up in our holy (not tailor made) faith when we are faithful in prayer, remembering the apostolic warnings, and looking for His mercy