Abba – New Testament Thursday

5235708902_4bde29c0a8_z“For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by Him we cry Abba, Father. The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.”
-Romans 8: 15-16

Tuesday night I was watching one of the few TV shows I watch NCIS (I am primarily a news and sports viewer). One of the main characters left the show because suddenly he found out he had a daughter and the mother never told him about the child. The child was being raised in Israel and when she saw a picture of her parents she pointed at him and said “Abba.” [Read more…]

Act Justly, Love Mercy, and Walk Humbly with Your God – Old Testament Tuesday

micah6_8He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.
-Micah 6:8

Sometimes a single Bible passage says a lot about life. This is one of those passages. Here God talks about three things essential for life. The first is to act justly. The Bible is not primarily a rule book, (it is more about our relationship to God) but God does care a great deal about justice. Here we are called to live out our faith with justice in every relationship and situation. Secondly we are asked to love mercy. Who does that? Jesus does, so much that he would go to the cross for us. Loving mercy comes when we share mercy the same way that Jesus has shared it with us. [Read more…]

Shocking Faith – New Testament Thursday

11980090_a8d8b7d400_zA few days later, when Jesus again entered Capernaum, the people heard that he had come home. So many gathered that there was no room left, not even outside the door, and he preached the word to them. Some men came, bringing to him a paralytic, carried by four of them. Since they could not get him to Jesus because of the crowd, they made an opening in the roof above Jesus and, after digging through it, lowered the mat the paralyzed man was lying on. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven.” Now some teachers of the law were sitting there, thinking to themselves, “Why does this fellow talk like that? He’s blaspheming! Who can forgive sins but God alone?” Immediately Jesus knew in his spirit that this was what they were thinking in their hearts, and he said to them, “Why are you thinking these things? Which is easier: to say to the paralytic, `Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, `Get up, take your mat and walk’? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins . . . .” He said to the paralytic, “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.” He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. This amazed everyone and they praised God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this!”
-Mark 2: 1-12

[Read more…]

Are You Ready? – Video Wednesday

Snap 2016-05-11 at 14.51.01“…but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect,”
-1 Peter 3:15

This video is going around a lot today because it’s the ten year anniversary.  Guy  Goma, a cab driver in England went into the BBC for a job interview.  They mistook him for the editor of a tech website and started interviewing him on live TV about recent changes in the area of music downloads.  He was caught completely off-guard and just kinda went with it.

Unexpected things happen in life.  What do we do when they happen? [Read more…]

Oh Lord, How Majestic Is Your Name – Old Testament Tuesday

psalm8_1O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! You have set your glory above the heavens. From the lips of children and infants you have ordained praise because of your enemies, to silence the foe and the avenger. When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor. You made him ruler over the works of your hands; you put everything under his feet: all flocks and herds, and the beasts of the field, the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea, all that swim the paths of the seas. O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!
-Psalm 8

This Psalm shows the contrast between God and humanity. David looks at the heavens and the stars in the sky and also the moon. These are all things the fingers of God have set in place. [Read more…]

Mom, You Are Forgiven – Sermon Follow-up

15207388786_9f4d7bd54e_zTherefore I tell you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven—for she loved much. But he who is forgiven little, loves little.” And he said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”
-Luke 7:47-48

Yesterday was Mother’s Day.  It’s a day when we celebrate Moms and tell them how much we love them.  Hearing how much they are loved can warm a mom’s heart, but sometimes that heart is also weighed down by guilt and a feeling that, despite all the cards and flowers, they aren’t really meeting the standard.  Whether it’s a messy house, not enough time with the kids, a broken marriage, or not being able to provide what they want for their kids, it can be easy for moms to smile on the outside, but be crying on the inside.

Some of the things that may make us feel less than worthy aren’t really sins.  A messy house isn’t a sin.  Not being able to take your child to Disney World isn’t a sin.  Those things may be disappointing and we may want to change them, but they aren’t sins.  Some things, however, are due to our sins; but our word from Jesus, today, is an important reminder.

In this passage, a woman who was a prostitute had entered a house Jesus was in and poured perfume on His feet.  The religious leaders with Jesus were appalled.  How could Jesus let her come near Him?  But that’s just what Jesus does.  He let’s the outcasts and the sinners come near to Him (That’s all of us, by the way).  He silences their accusers, but that’s not all.  For this woman, He didn’t leave her in her sins.  He forgave her.

That word of forgiveness is for you as well.  These days, “Who are you to judge me.” is a common phrase.  That phase may shut our accusers up, but it does nothing for our sins.  For that, we need Jesus.  We need the forgiveness and grace that Jesus offers us on the cross.  We need to hear Him say, “Your sins are forgiven.”  And He does.

Moms, that forgiveness is for you, too.

For all the broken promises.  For all the times you lost your temper.  For all the struggles in your marriage.  For all of it.

Your…..sins…..are……Forgiven.

There may be times when you don’t feel like you are doing a good enough job.  The truth is none of us do.  But Jesus is there.  He works in our broken efforts.  He forgives our sins and makes us whole again.  He renews our strength.  He loves us much.

Dear Jesus,

Thank You for my children.  Sometimes I don’t feel like I’m doing a very good job as a mom.  Please forgive me for the times I have failed You and failed my children.  Remind me of Your promise to forgive me and that I am loved by You.  Please watch over my children.  Keep them safe.  Help them to know they are loved.  And help them to love and trust in You.

Amen

In Christ,
Pastor Kurt

Watch the full sermon at Family of Christ’s North Campus below:

Watch the full sermon at Family of Christ’s Main Campus below:

Honoring Moms – Free Day Friday

8735616662_31f64861ee_z“As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you.” (Isaiah 66:13)

I think everyone remembers this Sunday is Mother’s Day. Mothers and fathers play a crucial role in the world. In the second tablet of the Commandments given to Moses that is concerned with how people dealing with each other, parents are the first and most important ingredient in society. “Honor your father and your mother so that you may live long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.” (Exodus 20:12) When we find problems in society very often we can find problems in the roles that parents have had with their children. Parenting is the hardest job there is in the world because it is an art, knowing wither to be the good cop or the bad cop. [Read more…]

He Will Not Disappoint!! – New Testament Thursday

romans5_5And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.
—Romans 5:5

Life can be disappointing.  I remember a few years ago I had my HOA breathing down my neck about my lawn and no time to get out there and mow.  So, I called a company to come mow.  They said they would be there on Tuesday, but Tuesday came and went and the lawn wasn’t mowed.  Wednesday…Thursday…  Finally I called again and they said they would have someone out the following week.  Ugh! [Read more…]

Off The Chain!

16107849659_b4ecd144c6_z“Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”
-Philippians 3:12-14

The video above is amazing.  Aaron Gwin is a mountain biker in a competition and what you might think would be one of the worst things that could happen happen to him, he brakes the chain of his bike right out of the gate.

That can happen to us. [Read more…]

Prayer as a Last Resort – Old Testament Tuesday

14112050311_fde4b92d72_zThen Jonah prayed to his God from the belly of the fish. He prayed: “In trouble, deep trouble, I prayed to God. He answered me. From the belly of the grave I cried, ‘Help!’ You heard my cry. You threw me into ocean’s depths, into a watery grave, With ocean waves, ocean breakers crashing over me. I said, ‘I’ve been thrown away, thrown out, out of your sight. I’ll never again lay eyes on your Holy Temple.’ Ocean gripped me by the throat. The ancient Abyss grabbed me and held tight.

My head was all tangled in seaweed at the bottom of the sea where the mountains take root. I was as far down as a body can go, and the gates were slamming shut behind me forever—Yet you pulled me up from that grave alive, O God, my God! When my life was slipping away, I remembered God, And my prayer got through to you, made it all the way to your Holy Temple. Those who worship hollow gods, god-frauds, walk away from their only true love. But I’m worshiping you, God, calling out in thanksgiving!

And I’ll do what I promised I’d do! Salvation belongs to God!” Then God spoke to the fish, and it vomited up Jonah on the seashore.
-Jonah Chapter 2 (The Message)

[Read more…]

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