Posts Tagged ‘ Faith ’

“Bleep of Faith” Week 2 Sermon

Bleep of FaithHere is week 2 from our series “Bleep of Faith”.

You can click Right Here to watch the video.

Here are my sermon notes if you want to follow along…

All kids reach an age that we both are excited for and dread.

That age when they start saying “I can do it myself”.

This mentality starts at a very early age, 

but unfortunately most of us never out grow it and it causes some issues

–Ball Hogs on the basketball team

–Coworkers who want to take all the credit

–Husbands who pretend they do anything around the house

And Christians who don’t think they need community to grow closer to God

Last week we talked about the Foundational offensive truth… You need Jesus

Titus 3 : 4  But—When God our Savior revealed his kindness and love, 5  he saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy.  He washed away our sins, giving us a new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit. 6  He generously poured out the Spirit upon us through Jesus Christ our Savior. 7  Because of his grace he declared us righteous and gave us confidence that we will inherit eternal life.

According to the Gospel…You cannot find God without Jesus Christ

Today we are talking about a Foundational offensive truth of continued spiritual maturity … You are not capable of doing it on your own

You need other people

You are not strong enough or good enough to grow without spiritual community

God’s plan of salvation was Jesus

God’s plan of growth and advancing His Kingdom is His Body

Romans 12 : 12  The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body.  So it is with the body of Christ.

Each of us is part of the Body of Christ…Together it makes something amazing

Separated the body parts become almost useless!

13  Some of us are Jews, some are Gentiles, some are slaves, and some are free.  But we have all been baptized into one body by one Spirit, and we all share the same Spirit. 14  Yes, the body has many different parts, not just one part. 15  If the foot says, “I am not a part of the body because I am not a hand,” that does not make it any less a part of the body. 16  And if the ear says, “I am not part of the body because I am not an eye,” would that make it any less a part of the body? 17  If the whole body were an eye, how would you hear?  Or if your whole body were an ear, how would you smell anything? 18  But our bodies have many parts, and God has put each part just where he wants it.

Each one of us has a very specific role to play in God’s Plan!

19  How strange a body would be if it had only one part!  20  Yes, there are many parts, but only one body. 21  The eye can never say to the hand, “I don’t need you.”  The head can’t say to the feet, “I don’t need you.”  22  In fact, some parts of the body that seem weakest and least important are actually the most necessary. 23  And the parts we regard as less honorable are those we clothe with the greatest care.  So we carefully protect those parts that should not be seen, 24  while the more honorable parts do not require this special care.  So God has put the body together such that extra honor and care are given to those parts that have less dignity. 25  This makes for harmony among the members, so that all the members care for each other.

Not only is your role specific … It is also very Important

All of us together make up the Kingdom of God…The Body of Christ

We all need each other

26  If one part suffers, all the parts suffer with it, and if one part is honored, all the parts are glad. 27  All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it.

If we are all individual parts of one body then none of us can survive alone and severed from our source of life.

Jesus is our source of salvation … Other believers are our source of health

God created us to live together in Community

So let’s look closer at the reasons we need to be deeply devoted to a group of other believers…

–Learning

Acts 2 :  42  All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord’s Supper), and to prayer. 43  A deep sense of awe came over them all, and the apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders. 44  And all the believers met together in one place and shared everything they had.  45  They sold their property and possessions and shared the money with those in need. 46  They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity— 47  all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people.  And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved.

In community we learn more about God and we learn from God

We don’t just learn from the teacher … we also learn from each other

In a community of faith you are both a student AND a teacher

–Love

Eph 4 : 2  Always be humble and gentle.  Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love. 3  Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace. 4  For there is one body and one Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future.

The unity of Christ is the source of some of my closest friends and relationships

In the Body of Christ we are Building relationships that will last for an eternity

And the thing that binds us together is Peace!

In a community of faith you both receive love and you give love

–Accountability

Don’t let this word scare you … This shouldn’t be as tough as we make it

“Fruit inspection” in the church should be Helpful … Not dramatic and gossipy

Accountability is when Loving people help point out the things you can’t see 

The reality is that You can’t see what everyone else sees

Galatians 6 : 1  Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path.  And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself. 2  Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ. 3  If you think you are too important to help someone, you are only fooling yourself.  You are not that important.

10  Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone—especially to those in the family of faith.

It’s like when you have food stuck in you teeth or a booger in your nose

All of us have a spiritual booger!  

We need others to point it out… not pick it out … Point it out.  

It’s our responsibility to deal with it and remove it … But you would never see it without the help of a true friend.

Godly Accountability is when others point out the things in our life that are keeping us from moving closer to God

–Encouragement   (We don’t just point out … we also help them forward)

Scripture says Edify one another…The original language was about building a house

1 Thes 5 : 11  So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.

Romans 14 : 19  So then, let us aim for harmony in the church and try to build each other up.

We should be Building each other up and helping each other make it through life

This is with our words, actions, service, and sometimes sacrifice of resources

In a community of faith you are both encouraged and you are an encourager

Eph 4 : 29  Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.

We are One body…Many Parts that Need each other for Health and Growth

 

 

“This is the stuff that happens to other churches…”

That’s exactly what I have been thinking for the last two months, but one of my leaders summarized exactly how I’ve been thinking and feeling with his statement.  He said, “This is the stuff that happens to other churches.  You know God can do it, but never expect it to happen to us.”  I’ve never doubted God’s ability, but perhaps questioned when, where and IF it could take place at Awestruck.

In August 2007 I sat with my pastor at CrossPoint Church (formerly Clifton Road)  and shared my dream of starting a new church.  We celebrated and prayed over what God was doing in my life and my ministry.  When he asked where we would meet i immediately answered, “We’ll end up wherever God decides to give us land”.  It flowed out of my mouth before I could even think about what I was saying.  I remember in that moment God whispered into my spirit and said “That was for you, hold onto it”.  For almost 3 years I have been believing and telling people that one day God would give us some land for our church when the time was right.

Just a few months later while going through church planter training we were asked to close our eyes and envision our church in the future.  Everyone in the room was willing to share what their church would look like and it all sounded great, but it sounded a lot like every other church I’d ever been to.  I politely declined sharing my vision to avoid being viewed as even stranger and crazier than they already presumed me to be.  🙂  What I saw was a huge place where families were spending time together.  It contained all kinds of fun and amusement type activities.  Dads were spending time with their kids.  Christ was being honored and people were growing closer to God by doing life together and enjoying themselves.  I don’t remember what our church building looked like?  I don’t even remember if I saw a building on the property?

Last night while walking the property with a good friend he said, “God gave you a clear vision, you held onto it, and now look what He is doing.”  I can promise you that I no longer believe that it’s the stuff that happens to other churches!  I don’t understand and I can’t explain why God has blessed Awestruck Church.  I do know “Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.”  (Hebrews 11:1)  He gave us clear direction and we have been vigilant about protecting it and walking it out.  Always trusting that we were on the right path, even when it didn’t make sense.  Especially when it didn’t make sense to the critics and doubters.

What is the vision God has given you?

How committed are you to walking it out despite the consequences?

“CelebReligion” (Week 1 Sermon)

celebreligion-logo-21Our society and culture is so consumed with celebrities and every part of their life.  When Celebs speak, we listen.  (whether we agree or not)  More than ever Celebrities are talking about their religion and what they believe about God.  Our new teaching series at Awestruck Church is taking some of the most influential Celebrities and comparing their stance on Spirituality and God with the Bible.  Our goal is NOT to attack or turn anyone against these folks!  We are taking the statements they make to millions and comparing them with the truth from God’s word.  It is going to a fun and interesting few weeks.

Click HERE to listen to the sermon from week 1:

“The Gospel According to Oprah”

Called to Lead…Learning to Trust

I was listening to a message by Mark Driscoll the other day and he said something that really peaked my interest.  I can’t remember it word for word, but the theme of his statement is what penetrated my heart.  You can give all the resources and money to a person that is not qualified to lead and regardless of how much they have, they will fail.  On the other hand, it has been proven that people that are called to lead will succeed regardless of their resources because they will find a way to make it happen.  I began to think back over my life and my 10 years of full time ministry through this filter over the past few days.  Many times I have survived on nothing with no one around me to help.  Many times I have seen great things take place out of a simple and seemingly scarce plan.  I have lead large groups and small, each with great outcomes.  I have failed more times than I can count along the way, but each time I got back up and learned how not to make the same mistakes.  

After reflecting on Driscoll’s statements I would say that God has called and equipped me to be a leader!  I would add one very important fact from my own experience to his statement.  I have never made something out of nothing without God coming through and providing a way.  Whenever I am following his perfect plan for me, He always comes through in mighty ways.  Today was one of those days.  It seems that God has always taken me to a place of total dependence before He comes through to rescue me.  He has never rescued me only to put me back where I started.  Every time He provides the way it is always more spectacular and grandiose than I could have ever imagined.  Much larger than my simple ways could ever comprehend.  Giving me everything I need and all the things that I would have never known to ask for!  His ways are mighty and his favor makes me stand in Awe!