This is the story of a collection of people who follow Jesus. We live in Littleton. We encounter people in the name of Jesus, we allow Jesus to turn us into disciples, we gather often, and we equip people to love and serve other people better.
Monday, January 30, 2012
Sunday, January 29, 2012
Saturday, January 28, 2012
4 You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. 5 Or do you think Scripture says without reason that the spirit he caused to live in us envies intensely?[a] 6 But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”[b] james does not mince words. the reason for fighting is that selfishness and rebellion against God. why are there fights because you fight because you do not get what you want. so you will do all kinds of crazy things to try to get your way. we even start to pray crazy prayers with the intent of getting God to do what we want him to do
but instead if we would ask God...and what are we to ask for? From the LORD's Prayer
May you receive glory
Thy kingdom come
Thy will be done
Give us our daily bread,Forgive us we give forgiveness,Lead us not into temptation then we will understand that god has a purpose for our life, and he mostly wants us to trust him. so the question i have today is, what will we ask god for? dont give me riches, i may forget you gave it to me. dont give me poverty, i may be tempted to steal. instead give me just what i need
do you remember the story of the Israelites making their way through the desert. every day they got manna. just enough for that day, except on friday they got enough for friday and saturday.
and if they tried to store up more, it would get ruined. we can learn so much from this as a church.
God gives us each out own path to walk. Sometimes we think it would be more fun to walk someone elses path. We get jealous. Like a two year old. rules for toys If I have it, its mine
If I was playing with it earlier today, its mine
If I put it down, and you pick it up, but I still want it, its mine
If you are playing with it, but I want it, its mine The problem comes when we apply these rules to adulthood. If I have it, its mine,
If I had it at any point in my life, it should still be mine
If I give it away, and want it back, its mine
If it belongs to you, but I really want it, its mine. I deserve it. So then we pray twisted prayers - dear God, I really want that...give it to me. God doesn't answer, so we take it a set further we turn to the world. and in so doing we become enemies to God. That is what James says. To be friends with the world is to be an enemy of God. I read a quote this week. We no longer plant churches in America. We create worship services. And a friend added "we don't even plant worship services, we create entertainment centers." How do we avoid this? We recognize that we are fighting a battle. A battle that begins inside. We want something. Sometimes it is even a good thing. But God withholds it, so we get mad. We pout. We stomp. We get grumpy. All the while we are not realizing that God has put us here for a reason. There is a lesson to learn. And if we will humble ourselves, and pray that his will would be done, then the situation we are in becomes bearable. It becomes a place of joy and peace. We root out the bitter root, and begin to experience the deeper life we all long for.
Church is a place not to be entertained, but to experience God, to enter his presence. When we come in with that attitude, the differences between us are no longer a big deal. God calls us to unity. Let us ask him to lead us.
Sunday, January 22, 2012
13 All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth. 14 People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. 15 If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. 16 Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them. The question is: What does it mean to live as an alien or stranger here on Earth. Big mistake we make is living as if this is all that matters. Our perspective narrows to this life, and sometimes even more narrow to just me. I am all that matters. If I am happy, then life is good. If I am not happy, then life is not good. But this is not the Bible's view on material possessions. Sometimes when preaching about "things," a preacher may take one of two extremes. 1) All material possessions are evil. 2) All material possessions are blessings from God. Neither of these is correct. It is not evil to have material things. May people in the Bible had material things. It is also not evil to deny yourself material blessings. Jesus was homeless. John the Baptist at locust and honey. My personal journey has gone through several phases. a) material things should not be sought.
b) material things are neutral, neither evil or good, and therefore, owning nice things is good, savings is bad - live for today
c) Living without savings is stupid - God gave us a brain, we should use it.
d) The more you have, the more you can give away. Blessed to be a blessing.
e) live simply, give generously recent lessons. 1) contentment/I want better for you. There are things about which I want better, but God says, be content with what you have.
There are things about which I am content, but God says, I want better for you. 2) Impermanency of life.
Buddhist monks make elaborate sand paintings and then they bring in a broom and sweep it all away and start again. Most of us say...what a waste... but it does two things. a) it shows us that nothing is permanent. b) we recognize that the process is more important than the outcome. I disagree on a few levels. 1) God does not want us to waste our lives. 2) Detachment for the sake of detachment is not the goal. 3) God is concerned with both the process and the outcome. It is just that the outcome is not always seen here. "They did not receive the things promised."
How do we develop a healthy sense of impermanency?
http://zenhabits.net/crutches/ reasons for the junk in our life 1) security - fight fear with information, you know how to survive
2) self image and self worth - learn to love yourself as you are
3) Memories and holding on to the past - live in the present
4) love - its not in the thing, its in the giver of the thing
5) possibility for improvement - live in the present
6) comfort - things are not able to fulfill emotional needs
7) Procrastination - take it a little at a time
8) Excitement - gathering equipment for future fun - you can have fun without the "toys"
Friday, January 20, 2012
Monday, January 16, 2012
Friday, January 13, 2012
Wednesday, January 04, 2012
Monday, January 02, 2012
Yesterday the sermon was from Hebrews 13:5. (paraphrased)
Keep yourself from the love of money
Be content with what you have
Because God has said,
I will never leave you or forsake you.
This week, I hope to keep it simple by return to those truths.
My golden retriever knows how to keep it simple. willow is all about chasing a ball. This week I am chasing a ball too. Six words on the ball: BE CONTENT WITH WHAT YOU HAVE.