Growing Community

For many churches, “community” is a value. That is, they want to develop among the people of the church a sense of belonging to the group. Their goal is to get people to think about “we” and not just “me,” which certainly agrees with scriptural descriptions of the church being an assembly, at least, and … [Read more…]

Growing Presence

“Are you here?” It’s all too common to have to ask this question of someone who is right there in plain sight. The problem is, they’re not really “here.” Most often, they’re face down in their phone (and no, it’s not just younger people). Sure, they could be distracted by something else, but it’s more … [Read more…]

Don’t Fear Community

No doubt about it, we’re experiencing a dramatic shift in our culture that has led people to fear community. Our culture is characterized by rabid individualism, the thought that I/me is more important than you/we. We live in a world that is driven by personal feelings and fulfillment instead of unity and mutual growth. And … [Read more…]

Growing in Community

In the beginning – not a bad start for a New Year’s message, right? In the beginning, God said that it wasn’t good for Adam to be alone (Genesis 2:18); so he created Eve. While many preachers and Bible teachers will point to that as a foundation of marriage, and rightly so, it probably points … [Read more…]

Give the Gift of Jesus

Paul wrote in Colossians 4:5, 6: “Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” He wrote this immediately following his request for prayer that God would open doors … [Read more…]

Giving Thanks Like Jesus

Believe it or not, there are only a few instances in the accounts of Jesus’ life when the Gospel writers tell us that Jesus gave thanks to God. In each of the accounts of Jesus feeding multitudes of people with just a bit of fish and bread, the writers tell us that Jesus gave thanks … [Read more…]

Do You Have Faith that Follows?

In our Sunday evening Bible study of Romans, we have found that the primary focus of Paul’s letter is to explain salvation. To be brief, Paul asserts that observing the law has never been capable of saving anyone because everyone has sinned but that salvation for sinners is accomplished only by God’s grace and is … [Read more…]

Who We Are and What We Do

Having been preaching for the last couple of months about God’s plan for the healthy, active body of Christ (that is, through Paul’s letter to the Ephesians), I am keen on pointing out those important moments when we are clearly on the right track. This past month has seen several such moments that I can’t … [Read more…]

Are You a Follower?

This year I’ve been trying to focus my articles and sermons on helping people to trust and follow Jesus. In fact, when we’re finished going through Ephesians, we’re going to focus on Jesus’ call, “Follow me!” But what does it mean to follow Jesus? If you have a Twitter account, you likely follow other people … [Read more…]