SERMONS & BLOG

Current Sermon Series:
A series in which we look at the mysterious but absolutely foundational reality of The Trinity.
 
 
 
 

Feb 23, 2020
Deliver Us
Matthew 6:13
WatchNotesDownloadDateTitle
  • Feb 23, 2020Deliver Us
    Feb 23, 2020
    Deliver Us
    Matthew 6:13
  • Feb 16, 2020As We Forgive
    Feb 16, 2020
    As We Forgive
    Matthew 6:12
  • Feb 9, 2020Forgive Us
    Feb 9, 2020
    Forgive Us
    Matthew 6:12
  • Feb 2, 2020Give Us This Day
    Feb 2, 2020
    Give Us This Day
    Matthew 6:11
  • Jan 26, 2020Your Kingdom Come
    Jan 26, 2020
    Your Kingdom Come
    Matthew 6:10
  • Jan 19, 2020Our Father
    Jan 19, 2020
    Our Father
    Matthew 6:9
  • Jan 12, 2020Teach Us to Pray
    Jan 12, 2020
    Teach Us to Pray
    Luke 11:1, Matthew 6:7 & 8
  • Jan 5, 2020In all the Ways We Need
    Jan 5, 2020
    In all the Ways We Need
    Series: God With Us
    Matthew 2:1-12
  • Dec 29, 2019In the Good News
    Dec 29, 2019
    In the Good News
    Series: God With Us
    Luke 2:8-20
  • Dec 24, 2019Always
    Dec 24, 2019
    Always
    Series: God With Us
    Matthew 1:18-23, John 1:1 & 14, John 14:15-19, Matthew 28:19-20

Blog Posts:

The Harvest is Worth it

The plethora of bright pink scratches that are all over my hand and forearm right now are totally worth it. Even though they are itchy and tender, that is not going to stop me from picking raspberries again. The fruit is such a delicious blend of sweet, tangy, and juicy flavor that I can ignore the pain. There are parallel lessons to be learned comparing picking raspberries and laboring for God’s kingdom.

“And he said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.” – ‭‭Luke‬ ‭10:2‬ 

  1. You actually have to work to get the harvest. It’s not like you just open your fridge and there is a bowl of berries waiting for you (unless you paid someone else to pick them for you). You have to go outside, probably in the hot sun, and search for the ripe berries, picking each one gently off the bush, taking care not to squish them. In the same way, we can’t just expect our friends, family, neighbors and coworkers to come to know Jesus without any effort at all. God invites us to participate in this labor by praying earnestly, loving and serving them unselfishly,  and being ready to speak to them about the truth of the Gospel when the Spirit prompts us to do so. 
  2. Discomfort is inevitable.  The bushes have thorns everywhere on the branches and stems. There are even thorns just millimeters away from the fruit. Try as you might, it is hard to avoid them, especially if you want to pick your whole harvest and not leave behind the mass of berries that are hiding farther inside the bushes.  In the same way, God calls us to follow Him out beyond our comfort zones and through difficult situation. If it were easy to master temptations, give selflessly, forgive those who have wrong us, and stand up for the gospel, we wouldn’t need God’s help. But it’s not and we do.
  3. Obvious doesn’t mean easy. I have several different varieties of raspberries growing, large ones, small ones, red, yellow, purple and black. The easiest to see are the black, not only because of their vibrant color, but because they grow in such a way that they aren’t covered up by as many. The black raspberries are not the easiest to pick, however, because they have the sharpest thorns. The majority of my scratches come from this bush. When we see a plan we think will be best for us and don’t understand why God is not allowing it to happen, he might be protecting us from being injured by thousands of tiny life thorns that we don’t even realize are there. We have to trust Him if he is leading us to another place that doesn’t seem to us like the best option.
  4. Most of the berries are hidden from view. You don’t realize how much you have to pick until you crouch down and start looking underneath leaves and approach the bush from multiple angles. Similarly, we might not at first see what God is doing in our lives and the lives of others on first glance. Once we labor along with Him for a while, we begin to see  how He is working all things for good and what fruit He is producing through trials and life circumstances.
 
Alright, enough reflecting. Go to the fields! The harvest is waiting!
 
-Liz

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With Us in Suffering

When I think about my own personal sufferings I often become overwhelmed with sadness and grief, guilt and shame, fear and anxiety. I can easily provide a list of experiences, happenings, and occurrences, and with that list comes another list of reasons as to why life stinks or why my relationships with others or with God suffers. Recently, I found myself challenged and encouraged by our brother Paul. The apostle Paul, responsible to writing much of the New Testament, was a man whose life was completely changed by the gospel and thus he lived, from that moment forth, with incredible commitment and sacrifice to the Lord. He did so, not out of obligation or as some sort of repayment, but in obedience, love, and surrender to the God who redeemed him.

Paul shares with us that he could have confidence in his own human effort if anyone could, but did not fall short of noting how worthless all those things are when compared to knowing Christ.

“I could have confidence in my own effort if anyone could. Indeed, if others have reason for confidence in their own efforts, I have even more…I once thought these things were valuable, but now I consider them worthless because of what Christ has done. Yes, everything else is worthless compared to the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord…” Philippians 3:4-8 

He also shares with us a list of personal sufferings and even in that he chose to boast in his weakness in order to point to the grace, the mercy, and power of God in and through his life.

“…I have worked harder, been put in prison more often, been whipped times without number, and faced death again and again. Five different times the Jewish leaders gave me thirty-nine lashes. Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked. Once I spent a whole night and a day adrift at sea. I have traveled on many long journeys. I have faced danger from my own people…If I must boast, I would rather boast about the things that shown how weak I am”. 2 Corinthians 11:23-30

I am thankful for a God who is right here with me in suffering and who experienced suffering Himself. I am also thankful for a God who stands in victory and reminds me of the victory I have in Him. The one who redeemed me is worthy of all my praise and my life of commitment, sacrifice, and continual worship. This is true not out of obligation or some sort of repayment but from a heart of obedience, love, and surrender.

-Rushia


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