Sermons from 2022

God’s Favor

PROBLEM GOD Luke 1:26-41 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.” Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel…

God At Work

PROBLEM GOD Luke 1:11-17 Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing at the right side of the altar of incense. When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and was gripped with fear. But the angel said to him: “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to call him John. He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because…

I Feel Let Down by God

PROBLEM What benefit is God to you? How our relationship with God is like marriage. Contract v covenant. Called off example, vows. What does it mean to trust God? Our end of the deal is to live like Jesus.  But what is God’s end? That’s a bit confusing.  What are we trusting God for? To provide and protect. But we lock our doors at night. Our trust is in your locks. Protection- insurance. Act of God.  insurance against God. God…

How Could God…

PROBLEM The real problem for the Church is not that people are asking these questions but when the Church stops listening, being empathetic, and caring for those who are hurting. I would be willing to assume that we have all struggled with the problem of evil in our own way. Many of my atheist friends think that Fry’s response is fantastic. That’s naive.  It is striking that this God allows, even encourages, questioning. a large part of the Psalms, and…

Freedom of Self-Love

At the core of the image of God is the restoration of the perfect relationship between the trinity + us. PROBLEM – Living without God creates a lot of problems If you can’t love yourself you are going to have problems. Loving yourself is necessary for happiness. Where there is a lack of self-love, there’s also an assumption of being unlovable to the core.  If you’re not really loving yourself, your message is “I don’t love me for my strengths…

Freedom From The Earth

PROBLEM Financial success is seen in a mixed light. It’s a blessing from God, yes, but it’s also tremendously dangerous. Money can derail us spiritually, even if we are “succeeding” financially. Money itself is neither good nor bad, but its use is highly spiritual. Money is a deceptive force that can capture people’s hearts, drawing them away from God like a powerful magnet. The closer you get to a magnet, the harder it pulls—and the more you give your heart…

Freedom For Others

Genesis 1:26 Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” Acts 13:36 “Now when David had served God’s purpose in his own generation, he fell asleep; he was buried with his ancestors and his body decayed. The greatest tragedy in…

Freedom For God

PROBLEM “Last week, I was reading my Bible and praying. But just five minutes after I finished, I found myself yelling at my husband and kids. What’s wrong with me?”. I’ve tried following biblical principles to improve my marriage, but we feel closer to a divorce than to each other.  I’m afraid to tell my Christian friends I’ve fallen into an overwhelming sense of depression. They’ll just tell me I need to trust God more. For years I’d been taught…

The Story of Our Salvation

Salvation has a 4,000 year history What do people think church is for? What is a Christian? Pray to Jesus and go to heaven In the image of God – Balloons Tree of decision Genesis 2:16-17 And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die. Battle…

Love, Forgiveness, and Reconciliation

PROBLEM All of us can choose to forgive or not. If you were hurt you can choose to forgive everyone or no one. You can choose if you’ll be a victim or a victor. There is a story of a father and 3 siblings. They resented their father for being so indifferent to them. One day as the father was dying he told the son that he gave his children a better life than he had. His father would punish…

Forgiveness and Shame

Problem What if our individual sins are not really the problem? What if the real problem for us is how others see us, whether they think we are good or bad? What is our response? How can I do better?  (recent examples) Bible – Adam and Eve  From the start they were perfectly loved by God and perfectly loved each other.  They could look at each other in the face. Then – “You will be like God”  You can do…

Faith To Forgive

Luke 17:1, 3-5 Jesus said to his disciples: “Things that cause people to stumble are bound to come… 3 So watch yourselves. “If your brother or sister sins against you, rebuke them; and if they repent, forgive them. 4 Even if they sin against you seven times in a day and seven times come back to you saying ‘I repent,’ you must forgive them.” 5 The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” Matthew 5:43-44 “You have heard that…