Thursday, October 24, 2013

Relationship Rescue: Matthew 5.1-10

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake,
    For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Matthew 5.9-10

Q: Is there anything more difficult and tricky than relationships?
A: No!
Relationship Rules of Thumb:

  1. In your relationships, be humble. (v. 5)
Think about the needs and concerns of others.
Consider how you can be a blessing to other people.

  1. Be an encouragement to other people. (v. 7)
As you build up others...
You will be built up
And they will work toward building you up.

  1. Always seek to make peace, with people and God. (v. 9)
Reconcile as quickly as possible.
Do not hold grudges, no matter what.

Take Away Point-
God has blessed me with many people in my life.
I will do all I can to bless others,
to be blessed by others, and

   to all God to bless my relationships.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Physical Health: 1 Corinthians 6.12-20

You were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit,
which are God’s. 1 Corinthians 6.20

Too often Christians try to separate the spiritual from the physical.
In this way it is easier for us to justify our own sins and weaknesses.
But God is interested in our bodies as well as our spirits.

  1. Consider what you put into your body.
Be careful about types and amounts of food.
Avoid substances that will hamper your relationship with God.
Stay away from chemicals that will harm your body or spirit.

  1. Consider what you do with your body.
Don't be foolish about your activities.
Develop your body to glorify God.

  1. Consider what you do with the bodies of other people.
Your actions have consequences for others..

  1. Consider how your body is used in worship.
We are to worship God with everything we have and everything we are.

Take Away Point-
I long to serve God with every part of me.
I want to give him my best with my whole body.

That means that I commit myself to serve God physically.   

Upside Down: Philippians 2.5-8

 He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death,
even the death of the cross. Philippians 2.8

A great pillar of the Christian faith is:
Christ humbled himself.
He did this so that we could be exalted.

Christ's humiliations...
  1. He gave up his 'god-ness' (v. 6)
  2. He became a man. (v. 7)
  3. He became a servant of men. (v. 7)
  4. He allowed himself to die. (v. 8)
  5. He submitted to execution. (v. 8)
  6. He submitted to crucifixion. (v. 8)

We should then humble ourselves...

  1. So that Christ can be exalted.

    1. So that we can be exalted.
Humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God,
that He may exalt you in due time. 1 Peter 5.6

Take Away Point-
We humans think a lot of ourselves. We should think more than we do of Christ.
As we exalt him, we are humbled.

When we humble ourselves he is able to lift us up.

A Simple Plan: Philippians 3.13-14

 I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3.14 

Spiritual Life is less complicated than we tend to make it.
All that is required is a plan and it doesn't need to be complicated.

  • Relax.
Wait on God

  • Request.
Begin your time with God with a request for his blessing and presence.

  • Read.
Spend some time in Bible study.

  • Reflect.
Listen to what God is saying.

  • Rely.
Let God lead your prayer time.

Take Away Prayer-
Stretch me, I pray, O Lord.
Help me to grow in ways that you want me to.

In Jesus' name. Amen. 

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Coming Home: Philippians 1.12-26

 In every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is preached;
and in this I rejoice, yes, and will rejoice. Philippians 1.18

Five categories of people in relation to the church...

  • The Un-churched.
These are people who have made a decision to leave the church.

  • The Non-churched.
Church is a non-issue in their lives.

  • The De- Churched.
Those who have left the church because of someone else.

  • The Churched.
These are the followers of Jesus who are in the church.

  • The Re-churched.
Those who have come back, are coming back, or need to come back.

Take Away Point-
Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them.
Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country

and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? Luke 10.4  

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The Three Chairs: 2 Corinthians 5.12-21

 If anyone is in Christ,he is a new creation; old things have passed away;
behold, all things have become new. 2 Corinthians 5.17

Which Chair are you sitting in?

  • The Chair of the Curious.
There is an interest in the things of God
You may have a lot of questions

  • The Chair of the Convinced.
You have made a decision about what you believe
You can affirm the truth of the Gospel

  • The Chair of the Committed.
You have decided to live and work for the sake of Christ
You will live or die for the gospel

Take Away Prayer-
Jesus, I need to get closer to you.
Help to move one chair closer to your will for my life.


Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Truly Converted: 1 John 4.20-5.5

 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome. 1 John 5.3

Part One: How to know you are truly converted-

  • You confess Jesus as Lord.
Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God,
God abides in him, and he in God. 1 John 4.15

  • You find misery in personal sin.
Whoever has been born of God does not sin, because he has been born of God. 1 John 3.9

  • You enjoy fellowship with other Christians.
By this we know that we love the children of God,
when we love God and keep His commandments. 1 John 5.2

  • You are obedient to Christ.
 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. 1 John 5.3

Part Two: How to be truly converted-

  • Repent of your sins.
  • Ask Jesus to come into and live in your heart.
  • Plan to live with Jesus' priorities in the future

Take Away Prayer-
Lord, I am not what I should be. I have sinned, and I continue to sin.
I'm sorry for that. I need your help. Come into my heart. Forgive my sins.
Live in me and make me new.
Help me to live for you and to stay in your will.

In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.