Preached on Sunday, September 18, 2016 at First Baptist Church, Jefferson City, Missouri. Click here to listen to the audio.
We are launching a new sermon series today titled “Because of Christ, everything has changed.” This series is the second in a series of sermons related to our Setting Sail visioning process. Over the past two years we have prayed and dreamed together about what God is calling us to be and do and now we are launching out in faith and in the power of the Holy Spirit, setting sail in obedience and anticipation of God’s dreams for us.
Today we begin our focus on Life-Changing Faith. Our preferred future is that First Baptist Church leads every person to follow the Way of Christ, discover their giftedness, and experience continual life transformation. All generations are rooted in a Biblical, hope-filled faith and experience the joy and significance of service.
In short, we follow Christ.
And because of Christ, everything has changed. Well, most of it has changed. I mean, a good percentage has changed. Okay, well maybe not a lot has changed but way more than Susie or Ted. I mean, talk about zero change.
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Oh God, gather me now to be with you as you are with me.
Soothe my tiredness;
quiet my fretfulness;
curb my aimlessness;
relieve my complusiveness;
let me be easy for a moment.
O Lord, release me
from the fears and guilts which grip me so tightly;
from the expectations and opinions which I so tightly grip,
that I may be open
to receiving what you give,
to risking something genuinely new,
to learning something refreshingly different.
for claiming so much for myself
that I leave no room for gratitude;
for confusing exercises in self-importance
with acceptance of self-worth;
for complaining so much of my burdens
that I become a burden;
for competing against others so insidiously
that I stifle celebrating them
and receiving your blessing through their gifts.
O God, gather me to be with you as you are with me.
Ted Loder, Guerillas of Grace
There is so much hatred and fear filling the airwaves and news feeds these days. Fear does not look good on the people of God. We are suppose to dress ourselves in with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience and over all that wear the coat of love. (Col. 3:12, 14)
Right now thousands of mamas and children are starving to death in displacement camps after escaping ISIS in Fallujah. I’m thankful for organizations like Preemptive Love Coalition, a global movement of peacemakers changing the way we engage the world’s most polarizing conflicts by confronting fear with acts of love.
Join me in giving. $35 feeds a family of six for two weeks.