Contributed on Aug 6, 2008
The erosion of values always runs downhill.
I think I need to begin by explaining the title of today’s sermon. Back in 1992 William Jefferson Clinton’s campaign slogan was, “It’s the economy, stupid.” His campaign manager, James Carville, formulated the saying to keep the Clinton campaign focused on an issue that was sure to beat George ...read more
Contributed on Aug 18, 2008
Noah refreshed the heart of God by trusting the Lord and taking Him at His word.
A. Read: Genesis 6:9-22 B. Song Intro: Part 1 – The Preparation 1. God promised and Noah prepared. One of the benefits of preaching books of the Bible rather than topical sermons is that God gives me “fresh eyes” to see His word. In the past my focus for this story was the flood ...read more
Contributed on Aug 30, 2008
Knowing and applying God’s truth to sexuality brings freedom and blessing.
Those of you who are my age or older I want you to try to remember back to your high school days. As I read this news item from June 18th ask yourself this question, “How did we, as a nation, get here?” As summer vacation begins, 17 girls at Gloucester High School are expecting babies — more ...read more
Contributed on Sep 13, 2008
Don’t let the drive for security and significance cause you to create a more manageable God.
Aren’t you glad we live in an age of user-friendly technology? You could go to Wal-Mart right after this service, purchase a relatively inexpensive laptop computer, plug it in, fire it up and with no previous experience understand how to use it in no time. Computer companies intentionally make ...read more
Contributed on Sep 13, 2008
God wants to reveal Himself to you so that He can reveal Himself through you.
[Use children’s sermon as introduction for this sermon.] I have a reward for one of you this morning, but you’re going to have to trust me to get it. Here’s the challenge: Somewhere in this room I have hidden a candy bar and you have to find it while blindfolded. I will tell you that it is in ...read more
Contributed on Sep 25, 2008
God’s ways are usually more frustrating than mysterious.
Back in 2000, my friend Dan and I were called and hired as pastors of Wellspring Community Church, a fellowship that we started from scratch. Dan and I began the process as friends, but we’d never actually worked together. At first, all was well as we concentrated on getting the facilities ready ...read more
Contributed on Sep 25, 2008
You can’t always know what God is up to, but you can position yourself to participate in His plan.
If I had to pick the number one question that people have asked me over the years as a pastor I’d have to say that it’s this: “What’s God’s will for me?” That question used to stump me, but now I have an answer, “I don’t know!” God’s will is an incredibly slippery thing, even for those who are ...read more
Contributed on Oct 2, 2008
A changed heart doesn’t guarantee that you will change the world.
If you’re like me you’ve been keeping up with the federal government’s attempt to bailout failing housing and financial markets this week. I found an article from Reuters in which the blame for this economic slump has been traced to a decline in Christian influence in our nation. DALLAS ...read more
Contributed on Oct 13, 2008
You must learn to ride the waves that God raises up.
One of my favorite college instructors was a history professor named Dr. Oakley. I loved his Western Civilization classes because of the unique perspective he brought to the subject. He was also one of my favorites because he empathized with his students. On the first day of class I was ...read more
Contributed on Oct 20, 2008
When God doesn’t make sense, He’s on the move.
There are two kinds of rollercoaster riders. The first kind gets in the car with hesitation and fear. They white-knuckle the lap bar in a death grip and either sit there in complete silence or scream their heads off the entire time. In this case, the rollercoaster produced anxiety and nausea. ...read more
Contributed on Oct 25, 2008
You haven’t completed the race until you’ve passed the baton.
A number of years ago I heard about a survey of centenarians (people 100 years or older). The study asked these folks if they had any regrets about their lives. One of the top answers of the survey was: I wish I could leave something that lives beyond me. Another way of saying it is leave a ...read more
Contributed on Nov 11, 2008
Learn to pick up the C.L.U.E.s of our invisible God.
I think it’s safe to assume that everyone here believes that God exists. (Why waste your time in a Sunday morning worship service if you don’t have faith that He is real?) What Christians aren’t always convinced of is the reality of God in their every day lives. For most of us God exists, but ...read more
Contributed on Nov 14, 2008
Don’t let a desire for instant gratification disqualify you from God’s best.
I think the five most nauseating words a person can hear are, “I’m sorry, you’ve been disqualified.” Disqualification means that no matter how hard you try or how well you’ve done, you will not reach your goal. There’s something that you can never have because you’ve been disqualified. ...read more
Contributed on Nov 20, 2008
Isaac reveals the ways of winsomeness.
Last Sunday the congregation of Mount Hope Church in Lansing, Michigan received several unwelcome protesters into their 11:30 AM service. On cue members of a gay rights activists group called Back Bash began disrupting the service. They were attempting to protest the passing of California’s gay ...read more
Contributed on Dec 2, 2008
What’s going on when the saints sin?
When I put my faith in Jesus Christ decisively at the age of 21, God spoke a sentence into my consciousness that I will never forget: “You’re forgiven. Go and sin no more.” From the moment that lightning bolt realization struck, I’ve never doubted God’s complete forgiveness. That simple ...read more
Contributed on Jan 1, 2009
The road ahead is about to get rocky, but, we have reason for hope.
It’s hard to believe another year has come and gone. It’s 2009 and what makes this new year unique is there’s more reason for pessimism than optimism at what it will bring. Maybe you’ve heard some of the dire predictions about what the near future holds. A couple of weeks ago, economist and ...read more
Contributed on Jan 14, 2009
God wants to shape your soul to be just like Jesus. Will you cooperate?
John Ortberg tells of a man in a church he once pastored whom he called Denny. Denny was not a happy man. He had attended church his whole life, but he had never been happy. Even the expression on his face was perpetually negative – so much so that one day a deacon asked him, "Denny, are you ...read more
Contributed on Jan 24, 2009
A rather mediocre sermon about Jacob’s facinating encounter with God at the Jabbok. The so-so title tells it all.
If you take the Bible seriously, it’s quite a frustrating book. Within its pages are outrageous commands like “be holy” (1 Peter 1:16) and “offer the parts of your body to [God] as instruments of righteousness” (Romans 6:13). Jesus laid a heavy burden on us when He said, “…be perfect, just as ...read more
Contributed on Jan 24, 2009
The Christian life is a balancing act between syncretism and sectarianism.
When I was a teenager, I was one of the few students at West Davidson Sr. High School who listened to heavy metal music. Although my buddies enjoyed it to some extent, they were a little bit spooked by some of the darker groups I chose. This was mainly because they were all good church-going boys ...read more
Contributed on Feb 9, 2009
Learn the steps on the journey BACK to God.
“William Hinson, Sr. retired pastor of First United Methodist Church in Houston, the largest church in American Methodism tells the story about a time when he was going to Columbia, South Carolina to preach in a revival. He had not slept well the night before and had gotten up that morning and ...read more
Contributed on Feb 9, 2009
When your God-given vision is interrupted, it’s a part of God’s plan.
When you were young, what did your dream about? What did you imagine you’d do with your life? Who did you envision you’d be? As a follower of Jesus Christ, what do you dream about? Did you ever think about doing something great for God? Have you ever had even a fleeting thought that perhaps ...read more
Contributed on Feb 23, 2009
God’s gifts are ultimately for God’s glory. Use them well.
This week I’ve begun reading a new book by one of my favorite authors, Malcolm Gladwell, titled Outliers: The Story of Success. The premise of the book is simple: no successful person is a self-made man; everyone who gets to the top had a lot advantages, help, and luck. He devotes two chapters to ...read more
Contributed on Mar 4, 2009
The more God can direct you, the more He can use you.
To what type of person does God give success? What kind of person is God able to empower and use in a mighty way? Is it the man or woman with the most talent or skill? Are looks or leadership ability the necessary traits? Is a high IQ essential to do great things for God? Obviously, the answer ...read more
Contributed on Mar 8, 2009
You are God’s catalyst for change.
Several years ago a movie came out called Bruce Almighty staring Jim Carrey. It’s a good movie about a guy who is frustrated at the way his life is going, so he blames God and tells Him he could do a better job if he were in charge. God, played by Morgan Freeman, grants Bruce all of His powers. ...read more
Contributed on Mar 15, 2009
Faith lived out has far reaching effects.
A new survey came out last week which reveals that Christian are losing their influence in the United States. “The nation has grown less religious in the last two decades … with a 10 percent drop in the number of people who call themselves Christians and increases in all 50 states among those ...read more
Contributed on Mar 21, 2009
Put your trust and hope in God, not government.
As a political libertarian I found myself somewhat irritated with the section of scripture we’re studying this morning. The Egyptians lost their money, their livestock, their land, and their freedom. The Egyptian government assumed control of their property and their persons. How did Pharaoh ...read more
Contributed on Mar 27, 2009
This sermon answers the question, "How did I get here?"
Have you ever had one of those moments where you stopped, looked at your life, and asked, “How did I get here?” This usually occurs when life doesn’t turn out as we expected. Divorce, bankruptcy, job loss, mid-life crisis, broken relationships, failure to obtain a goal or dream, health problems, ...read more
Contributed on Apr 4, 2009
Surrender absolutely to the God who is absolutely committed to your good.
“Surrender: verb 1 a: to yield to the power, control, or possession of another upon compulsion or demand b: to give up completely or agree to forgo especially in favor of another” During the First Gulf War a common occurrence was the immediate, unconditional surrender of members of the Iraqi ...read more