Don't Squander Your Thanksgiving

Don't Squander Your Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving for many is a time of great celebration as we feast on savory food, enjoy close and not-so-close family, and take comfort in a few days of rest. I'm praying we don't waste it and spend the day - and holiday season - living as "christian" atheists...

An Explanation on the Covenant of Grace

An Explanation on the Covenant of Grace

All true theology is based on some form of a divine covenant. The Christian religion must be understood covenantally, for that is how God has chosen to relate to man, whether in the garden or after the entrance of sin into the world. The goal of all divine–human covenants is summed up in the words found throughout the Bible: “I will be your God and you will be my people, and I will dwell among you” (Ex. 6:729:45Ezek. 11:202 Cor. 6:16Rev. 21:3).

Post-Election Processing

Post-Election Processing

I am thankful that no man can hinder, unseat, or frustrate the plans of our Sovereign King...our lives and legacies are fully in your hands, O LORD.

Election 2016 - Resources

Election 2016 - Resources

At the bottom of this post I’m going to provide links to several podcasts, sermons, and websites that explore the strategic effects of votes for major party candidates, 3rd party candidates, or possibly withholding our votes in protest…(to send a message that we won’t be bought or align with either of our current major party choices).

These links have helped to guide me as I’ve struggled with what to do and why I’m going to do it.

      PREPARING TO GATHER > APRIL 10, 2016  Each week, we aim to prepare our hearts before the Lord in anticipation of our worship gathering. We'll post the Scriptures, Big Idea, Songs, and other Reflections that help us enter into worship together - with one heart, one voice, and one mind (Philippians 2:2). Here are some simple ways to prepare your heart...    READ  through the text that will be preached on Sunday. Take a few moments or more to familiarize yourself with it, study, or meditate on it.    SING, LISTEN, OR READ  through the songs that we'll be singing together. Meditate on the truth and substance they instill. Consider the ways of your own heart as you do. This is also a good opportunity to become familiar with new songs in advance of our time together.    PRAY  and ask the Lord to open your heart to Him and to draw you into thoughtful worship as you reflect on who He is, what He's done for us in Jesus, who we are, and what He's called us to do.       WE'RE IN A SHORT SERIES CALLED:      

  
     
    
       
        
           
                
           
        

        

       
    
     
  


     SCRIPTURE:   Mark 1:15    "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel."      SUNDAY'S BIG IDEA:   Repentance of false worship leads to true worship.    True worship leads to increasingly changed hearts.    Changed hearts lead to   increasingly changed lives.    Changed lives make the gloriousness of God   increasingly visible.       QUOTES   John Piper:   Repenting means experiencing a change of mind that now sees God as true and beautiful and worthy of all our praise and all our obedience.    Charles Spurgeon:   Repentance is a discovery of the evil of sin, a mourning that we have committed it, a resolution to forsake it. It is, in fact, a change of mind of a very deep and practical character, which makes the man love what once he hated, and hate what once he loved    Martin Luther:   When our Lord and Master Jesus Christ said “Repent,” he intended that the entire life of believers should be repentance.       WILL GOD FORGIVE ME OF REPETITIVE SINS?  TIM KELLER        </iframe>" data-provider-name="YouTube"

PREPARING TO GATHER > APRIL 10, 2016

Each week, we aim to prepare our hearts before the Lord in anticipation of our worship gathering. We'll post the Scriptures, Big Idea, Songs, and other Reflections that help us enter into worship together - with one heart, one voice, and one mind (Philippians 2:2). Here are some simple ways to prepare your heart...

  1. READ through the text that will be preached on Sunday. Take a few moments or more to familiarize yourself with it, study, or meditate on it. 
  2. SING, LISTEN, OR READ through the songs that we'll be singing together. Meditate on the truth and substance they instill. Consider the ways of your own heart as you do. This is also a good opportunity to become familiar with new songs in advance of our time together. 
  3. PRAY and ask the Lord to open your heart to Him and to draw you into thoughtful worship as you reflect on who He is, what He's done for us in Jesus, who we are, and what He's called us to do. 

 

WE'RE IN A SHORT SERIES CALLED:

SCRIPTURE:

Mark 1:15

"The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel."

 

SUNDAY'S BIG IDEA:

Repentance of false worship leads to true worship.

True worship leads to increasingly changed hearts.

Changed hearts lead to increasingly changed lives.

Changed lives make the gloriousness of God increasingly visible.

  

QUOTES

John Piper: Repenting means experiencing a change of mind that now sees God as true and beautiful and worthy of all our praise and all our obedience.

Charles Spurgeon: Repentance is a discovery of the evil of sin, a mourning that we have committed it, a resolution to forsake it. It is, in fact, a change of mind of a very deep and practical character, which makes the man love what once he hated, and hate what once he loved

Martin Luther: When our Lord and Master Jesus Christ said “Repent,” he intended that the entire life of believers should be repentance. 

 

WILL GOD FORGIVE ME OF REPETITIVE SINS?

TIM KELLER

      PREPARING TO GATHER > MARCH 13, 2016  Each week, we aim to prepare our hearts before the Lord in anticipation of our worship gathering. We'll post the Scriptures, Big Idea, Songs, and other Reflections that help us enter into worship together - with one heart, one voice, and one mind (Philippians 2:2). Here are some simple ways to prepare your heart...    READ  through the text that will be preached on Sunday. Take a few moments or more to familiarize yourself with it, study, or meditate on it.    SING, LISTEN, OR READ  through the songs that we'll be singing together. Meditate on the truth and substance they instill. Consider the ways of your own heart as you do. This is also a good opportunity to become familiar with new songs in advance of our time together.    PRAY  and ask the Lord to open your heart to Him and to draw you into thoughtful worship as you reflect on who He is, what He's done for us in Jesus, who we are, and what He's called us to do.       WE'RE IN A SERIES ON THE BOOK OF COLOSSIANS CALLED:      

  
     
    
       
        
           
                
           
        

        

       
    
     
  


        SCRIPTURE:   Colossians 4:2-18      SUNDAY'S BIG IDEA:   Leaning on the Gospel in Reliant Prayer leads to Righteous Legacy.        COLOSSIANS 4:2-18     "Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it   with thanksgiving.   At the same time, pray also for us, that God may   open to us a door for the word,   to declare the mystery of Christ,   on account of which I am in prison—  that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak.      Walk in wisdom toward   outsiders, making the best use of the time.   Let your speech always   be gracious,   seasoned with salt,   so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.      Tychicus will tell you   all about my activities. He is a beloved brother and faithful minister and fellow servant   in the Lord.   I have sent him to you for this very purpose, that you may know how we are and that he may encourage your hearts,   and with him   Onesimus, our faithful and   beloved brother, who is one of you. They will tell you of everything that has taken place here.      Aristarchus my fellow prisoner greets you, and Mark   the cousin of Barnabas (concerning whom you have received instructions—  if he comes to you, welcome him),   and Jesus who is called   Justus.   These are the only men of the circumcision among my fellow workers for the kingdom of God, and   they have been a comfort to me.   Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ Jesus, greets you, always   struggling on your behalf in his prayers, that you may stand   mature and fully assured in all the will of God.   For I bear him witness that he has worked hard for you and for those in Laodicea and in Hierapolis.   Luke the beloved physician greets you, as does   Demas.   Give my greetings to the brothers   at Laodicea, and to Nympha and   the church in her house.   And when   this letter has been read among you, have it also read in the church of the Laodiceans; and see that you also read the letter from Laodicea.   And say to   Archippus, 'See that you fulfill   the ministry that you have received in the Lord.'      I, Paul,   write this greeting with my own hand.   Remember   my chains.   Grace be with you."        QUOTES   Tavis Smiley:  The choices we make about the lives we live determine the kinds of legacies we leave."    Charles Spurgeon:  Believe me, if a church does not pray, it is dead.   Sam Storms:  The easiest thing about praying, is quitting.      SONGS  Here are a few new songs we'll sing together this Sunday. Enjoy listening and endeavor to enter into worship as you do.      MYSTERY  CHARLIE HALL        </iframe>" data-provider-name="YouTube"            GREAT ARE YOU, LORD  ALL SONS AND DAUGHTERS        </iframe>" data-provider-name="YouTube"

Text: Colossians 4:2-18.   Big Idea: Leaning on the Gospel in Reliant Prayer leads to Righteous Legacy. 

      PREPARING TO GATHER > MARCH 6, 2016  Each week, we aim to prepare our hearts before the Lord in anticipation of our worship gathering. We'll post the Scriptures, Big Idea, Songs, and other Reflections that help us enter into worship together - with one heart, one voice, and one mind (Philippians 2:2). Here are some simple ways to prepare your heart...    READ  through the text that will be preached on Sunday. Take a few moments or more to familiarize yourself with it, study, or meditate on it.    SING, LISTEN, OR READ  through the songs that we'll be singing together. Meditate on the truth and substance they instill. Consider the ways of your own heart as you do. This is also a good opportunity to become familiar with new songs in advance of our time together.    PRAY  and ask the Lord to open your heart to Him and to draw you into thoughtful worship as you reflect on who He is, what He's done for us in Jesus, who we are, and what He's called us to do.       WE'RE IN A SERIES ON THE BOOK OF COLOSSIANS CALLED:      

  
     
    
       
        
           
                
           
        

        

       
    
     
  


     SCRIPTURE:   Colossians 3:18-4:1      SUNDAY'S BIG IDEA:   We don't get from creatures what only a Creator provides. Yet, we try.        COLOSSIANS 3:18-4:1    "Wives, submit to your husbands, as   is fitting in the Lord.   Husbands, love your wives, and   do not be harsh with them.   Children, obey your parents   in everything, for this pleases the Lord.   Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged.   Bondservants,   obey   in everything those who are your earthly masters,   not by way of eye-service, as people-pleasers, but with sincerity of heart, fearing the Lord.   Whatever you do, work heartily,   as for the Lord and not for men,   knowing that from the Lord   you will receive the inheritance as your reward.   You are serving the Lord Christ.   For the wrongdoer will be paid back for the wrong he has done, and there is no partiality. Masters, treat your bondservants justly and fairly, knowing that you also have a Master in heaven."       QUOTES   Johann Agricola:  It sounds rather strange that we should command husbands that they should love their wives, as if they don't love their wives enough. Nevertheless it is a needed instruction which summarizes the entire relationship of husbands to their wives. Saint Paul says in Ephesians 5, "In this way husbands too should love their wives as their own bodies, just like Christ loves the congregation. Christ loves the congregation, and gave himself up for her, so that she would be holy."...Thus husbands are commanded that in all their words, works, signs and interactions they should demonstrate their love to their wives, so that a wife could not interpret all her husband does with her in any other way than that her husband intends to be honest and good to her.    John Calvin:  By the former statements (v. 18-22; 4:1) he means that humans should be served in such a way that Christ at the same time holds supremacy of dominion and is the supreme master. Truly, this is an excellent consolation for all who are under subjection: when they willingly serve their masters, their services are acceptable to Christ as though they had been rendered to him.    Mick Jagger:  You can't always get what you want...but if you try sometimes well you might just find...you get what you need.      SONGS  Here are a few new songs we'll sing together this Sunday. Enjoy listening and endeavor to enter into worship as you do.      MYSTERY  CHARLIE HALL        </iframe>" data-provider-name="YouTube"            GREAT ARE YOU, LORD  ALL SONS AND DAUGHTERS        </iframe>" data-provider-name="YouTube"

TEXT: Colossians 3:18-4:1 BIG IDEA: We don't get from creatures what only a Creator provides. Yet, we try.

      PREPARING TO GATHER > FEBRUARY 21, 2016  Each week, we aim to prepare our hearts before the Lord in anticipation of our worship gathering. We'll post the Scriptures, Big Idea, Songs, and other Reflections that help us enter into worship together - with one heart, one voice, and one mind - in full accord (Philippians 2:2). Here are some simple ways to prepare your heart...    READ  through the text that will be preached on Sunday. Take a few moments or more to familiarize yourself with it, study, or meditate on it.    SING, LISTEN, OR READ  through the songs that we'll be singing together. Meditate on the truth and substance they instill. Consider the ways of your own heart as you do. This is also a good opportunity to become familiar with new songs in advance of our time together.    PRAY  and ask the Lord to open your heart to Him and to draw you into thoughtful worship as you reflect on who He is, what He's done for us in Jesus, who we are, and what He's called us to do.       WE'RE IN A SERIES ON THE BOOK OF COLOSSIANS CALLED:      

  
     
    
       
        
           
                
           
        

        

       
    
     
  


        SCRIPTURE:   Colossians 2:16-23      SUNDAY'S BIG IDEA:   The Hamster Wheel of Our Own Performance...No Exits, No Satisfaction       COLOSSIANS 2:16-23    "  Therefore let no one   pass judgment on you   in questions of food and drink, or with regard to   a festival or   a new moon or a Sabbath.   These are a shadow of the things to come, but   the substance belongs to Christ.   Let no one   disqualify you,   insisting on asceticism and worship of angels,   going on in detail about visions,   puffed up without reason by   his sensuous mind,   and   not   holding fast to the Head, from whom the whole body, nourished and knit together through its joints and ligaments, grows with a growth that is from God.      If with Christ   you died to the   elemental spirits of the world,   why, as if you were still alive in the world, do you submit to regulations—  “Do not handle, Do not taste, Do not touch”   (  referring to things that all perish as they are used)—according to   human precepts and teachings?   These have indeed an appearance of wisdom in   promoting self-made religion and asceticism and severity to the body, but they are   of no value in stopping the indulgence of the flesh.  "       QUOTES   R.C. Sproul Jr:  Let's start here-we have peace with God by trusting in the finished work of Christ alone. Add anything to that and you have fallen into a false gospel. You do not have peace with God by trusting in Christ and by being circumcised, or by trusting in Christ and keeping the Feast of Weeks. Add anything to the work of Christ, and you lose the work of Christ.   Bob Thune + Will Walker:  Performance-driven Christianity is actually a minimizing of God's holiness. Thinking we can impress God with our "right living" shows that we've reduced His standards far below what they actually are. Rather than being awed by the infinite measure of His holy perfection, we have convinced ourselves that if we just try hard enough, we can merit God's love and approval.     SONGS  Here are a few new songs we'll sing together this Sunday. Enjoy listening and endeavor to enter into worship as you do.      CORNERSTONE  HILLSONG        </iframe>" data-provider-name="YouTube"            REVELATION SONG  KARI JOBE + CHRIS TOMLIN        </iframe>" data-provider-name="YouTube"            AMAZING GRACE (MY CHAINS ARE GONE)  CHRIS TOMLIN        </iframe>" data-provider-name="YouTube"

TEXT: Colossians 2:16-23. BIG IDEA: The Hamster Wheel of Our Own Performance...No Exits, No Satisfaction