Jesus. Jesus. You say it. Say it again. Say it out loud and repeat His name several times. The old Gaither song is right, there is just something about that name. "Master, Savior, like the springtime after the rain…" It is the name we call upon for salvation. It is the name we call upon for cleansing of sin. It is the name we call upon in times of fear. And it is the name we call upon to strengthen our faith. Jesus knows our deepest secrets, He knows our greatest struggles, He knows the things that shake our foundation ...
Decades had come and gone, and for Russ McElveen it seemed that there were important people in his family he would never see again. Then came the miracles of the past year or so that brought a son and two sisters back into his life. After 60 years he made contact with two of his sisters and after 45 years he was reconnect with a son. Have you ever thought that someone was gone from your life forever.
How's your heart?
What difference do you make to the Kingdom work God is doing around you? Some may feel they don't contribute much, but let's remember all the members of the body are essential for the body to function properly. Just because you don't preach or teach doesn't mean you're unimportant. If you are serving God, using your spirit given gifts and serving for the honor and glory of God, you are essential! When you consider the ministry of Jesus, it is easy to focus on those out in front such as Jesus and the disciples. But ...
"Dearly Beloved…" That's the way I started out my last wedding sermon. I know it's a little bit of a throwback. We don't call too many people "beloved" anymore, but I hope you know what I mean. Today, I want to think about why that's a perfect way to greet one another…"beloved".
What a prison self consciousness can be. When I think of those "would be" Christians if they could just find someone to express the love of God and acceptance to them. In Luke 7, we read the story of a self-righteous Pharisee who invites Jesus to dinner and an encounter with a prostitute. (Odd mix I know) but it is kind of like Christians in the world with judgmental spirits or worse how sinners are made to feel (if) or when they walk into the church building. You have heard people say, "Well if I went to church the ceiling ...
"Dearly Beloved…" That's the way I started out my last wedding sermon. I know it's a little bit of a throwback. We don't call too many people "beloved" anymore, but I hope you know what I mean. Today, I want to think about why that's a perfect way to greet one another…"beloved."
Doubt happens to the best of us. I know we sometimes put people on a pedestal like famous preachers, authors or even mature Christians we know and then criticize ourselves with comparisons like "I bet they are too spiritually mature to doubt like me. I wish I was more like them." But the truth is, they do have times of doubt because we all do. We have times of doubt when tragedies strike for no reason or prayers go unanswered or we get mistreated for trying to do the right thing, etc. We wonder if anyone else struggles with the ...
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Water management is an ongoing challenge in Georgia.
1 Peter 3:15b-16 "And if someone asks about your Christian hope, always be ready to explain it. But do this in a gentle and respectful way. Keep your conscience clear. Then if people speak against you, they will be ashamed when they see what a good life you live because you belong to Christ."
Last week we wrestled with the question of how we know if our faith is strong. We empathized with those disciples on the road to Emmaus on Easter Sunday evening (Luke 24:13-35) shaken to their very core, doubting everything they thought they believed. But then Jesus came along and showed them who he was.
This year marks the 400th anniversary of King James of England authorizing the translation of the Bible commonly known as the King James Version. He commissioned six committees (42 men, no women) to come up with a common translation of the Bible that would be the standard text of the realm. Their work began in 1604 and was completed in 1611.
So how long did your Easter high last? Do you know what I'm talking about - that rush of spirituality that just seems to be in the air around Easter - with all the special music and the attention to religion given - even on TV? It all comes together to get the Christian's heart burning with excitement, with love, with joy and hope.
Every year, Easter is such a high, singing hymns celebrating the victory Jesus has won for us. I pray you had a chance to get to church and enjoy the excitement of joining with others celebrating the gift of life we've been given.
I am Sue's husband. I am David's father, and Dorothy's son. I am Allen Memorial's pastor and Dan's friend.
I remember a tree house that my older brother and his friends once built overlooking the creek near our elementary school.
Last week, we noticed the difference between the soldiers (Jesus' enemies) and the women (Jesus' friends) at the tomb that first Easter Sunday morning. The soldiers fainted in fear. The women listened to God's word and found joy. Here's Matthew 28:5: "Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay."
A great sigh of relief swept through our nation on Sunday night as President Barack Obama announced that Osama bin Laden had been found and killed in a covert military raid.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt said that "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself." Yeah right. Try telling that to the man being mauled by a bear, or the woman about to be hit by a car, or anyone facing a life-threatening danger. Just telling them they don't have to fear it doesn't quite do the job.
"For Sale: one empty tomb, like new, sure to increase in value. Make offer."
Christian writer, preacher and teacher Tony Campolo famously tells a wonderful story of a "preach off" in which he competed with several pastors in his predominantly African-American church.
It's Good Friday, the pivotal date in world history.
"My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from saving me, so far from the words of my groaning?"