Paul was never content to think his task was complete - there were always unreached people and unreached groups who still needed the gospel. Regradless of where we live or what we do, we are all called to be missionaries - how this is specifically carried out, however, will vary from person to person.
The life of a Christian is a life of following the lead of the Holy Spirit. It is a series of next steps. If we stop going we will stop growing and our faith will stop showing.
When we go into the world and share our faith, we never know what God might do. If we can learn to worship God, even in the bad places of life, we will dramatically impact the world around us. Our witness is in what we say, but it is powerfully validated by what we do.
It’s one thing to say we got through something by faith when the suffering is over and done, but what about when the suffering continues with no end in sight or even leads to death?
Encouragers are powerfully influential people who are desperately needed and greatly used in the work of God’s Kingdom. Encouragers see life’s circumstances through the light of God rather than seeing God through the light of life’s circumstances. The are important to Gods Kingdom because they see the potential and willingly invest in others.
Will you intentionally encourage others by sharing your hope and investing in their lives?
The Gospel of Jesus Christ is available to and given for everyone. But sadly, the gospel is not accessible to everyone because many of us hoard love like it is a precious commodity that can run out - so we greedily keep it to ourselves. The reality is that every one of us who call Jesus Lord and Savior either stand in the gap or we stand in the way of those who do not know him.
Christianity has always been and should always be a radically different faith lived out and taught by radically different, radically transformed people. You cannot truly follow Jesus without being radically changed. It's impossible.
Have you truly allowed God to change you or are you just going through the motions?
What moves you? When we look back at the early church, they started out clustered in Jerusalem until persecution broke out. It was then that they were moved out of Jerusalem and the church truly began to spread and flourish. In the same way, God sometimes uses circumstances in our lives to move us in ways we never would have wanted to go on our own.
Pastor Scott Ritz visits us this week from Dayton, OH. He urges us not to try carving out time to practice the fruit of the Spirit, but to walk in step with the Spirit in all of life.
Pastor Jeremy Hayworth joins us this week from Troy, Ohio and asks us this question: “You’ve sacrificed every moment of your life to be who you are today. Was it worth it?”
All three pastor’s share a Father’s Day message with us.
After God raised Jesus from the dead and he later ascended into heaven, Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to his disciples to empower them. If we have accepted Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we have this same Holy Spirit today. But what does it look like to be filled with the Holy Spirit? The book of Acts gives us four things to look for:
Growth in maturity
Growth in unity
Growth in favor
Growth in number of conversions
To apply this, ask yourself: What can I do in the next 48 hours to let my enthusiasm show in one of the above areas?
The mission of the church, given to us by our Lord, is to go into all the world and make disciples of others. Three key points in this mission, typically called the great commission, are:
It is authorized by nothing less than the power of Christ
It is accomplished by nothing less than the plan of Christ
It is assured by nothing less than the presence of Christ
Peter was not just one of Jesus’ Disciples, he’s a central character in the Jesus story. He’s every man and every woman. He’s a picture of humanity in which we see good and bad, belief and disbelief, giving and taking, humility and arrogance, loyalty and disloyalty, victories and failures, death and resurrection.
We can do 3 things with our failures:
1) We can try to ignore them and act like nothing ever happened.
2) We can be honest about them, and with God’s help find healing and resolution.
3) Or, we can let our failures defeat us and define our lives.
The devil will always push you towards choices 1 or 3. He will always try to lure you away from choice #2.
Failure is not final unless YOU decide it’s final. God has taken some of history’s greatest failures and turned them into enduring monuments of his redemptive grace.