One could argue that the enormity of our “to-do lists” and the busyness of life has greatly increased the velocity of our daily lives. Accordingly, we are living life so fast that we are in danger of missing the important things in life. In this sermon, we will be encouraged to slow down so that we can “recover our lives”. Today, we will be challenged to unsubscribe from hurry.
Many of us are haunted by our pasts. We have done some horrible things. We have failed to do some good things. We experience the heartache of missed opportunities. During the season of Lent, we are encouraged to unsubscribe from allowing the past to be the prime mover in our lives. The blood of Jesus washes us clean and launches us into to newness of life.
In a few days, the season of Lent will commence. Lent is a shortened form of the English word “Lenten” which means “spring”. Accordingly, this time represents an entering into a new season. During this new season, we enter a period where we abstain from things (fast) and we introduce new practices (discipline). Someone described Lent as
“a season of preparation, self-reflection and repentance when we seek to literally ‘turn around’ and realign our lives and focus toward God. It is a time to give up things as well as take on new life-giving practices, helping us rid ourselves of distractions and our own selfish desires. By doing so, we seek to live and love as more faithful disciples of Jesus Christ.”
This morning, we prepare for the fast by discussing the ever-growing list of that creates clutter, confuse, and challenge our journey with God. We will zero in on the need to “unsubscribe” from things that get in the way. Our journey is one that we pray will lead to freedom.
In case you hadn't noticed, the American political climate is a raging dumpster fire on social media. When was the last time someone actually changed their mind because of a Twitter rage, or a Facebook tirade?
Are the words of Jesus to "do to others as you would have them do to you" needed now more among Christians in our current climate?
When Jesus read from Isaiah's prophecy in the synagogue, he pronounced his mission, vision and purpose. The life Jesus lived flowed out of commitment to the mission, vision and purpose that God placed in his life. Likewise, as Jesus' disciples, we will find fulfillment when we live into the mission, vision and purpose that God has revealed to us.
The mission of God through the Reynoldsburg church will take the intentional participation of all of its members. God has blessed this church with gifts, talents, interests and passions. It is in this spiritual atmosphere that God's glory shines brilliantly in our world and community.
The baptism of the Lord is a fascinating event. As the spotless lamb of God, he didn't need to be washed of his sins. So why was he baptized? The baptism of the Lord affords us an opportunity to learn more about the importance of our own baptisms and the privilege to offer the blessing of baptism to others.
The "Light" is a gift given by God for his people to live in among the blinding darkness of the world. In this light, we are given a directive to "arise" or "get up". Rescued out of darkness, we are able to see that God's glory and grace has been made available to everyone. As we reflect on that tremendous blessing, we will review and forecast the place of the Reynoldsburg Church of Christ in God's mission to rescue humankind out of darkness.
God's love for us has been demonstrated in the most powerful way when the messiah, who was promised long ago, gave his life as an offering for those he loves.
It would be cute if the story of Christ was only about a crib. But the truth is that it involved a cross.
It would be cute if the story of Christ was only about a mother soothing her child. But the truth is that later, a crying mother would be soothed by the words of comfort spoken by her son as he hung on a cross.
It would be cute if the story of Christ was only about a host of angels singing hymns from heaven. But the truth is that later, those same angels watched in horror as the son of God breathed his last.
The story of crib to cross is... the Christmas Gospel.