Nehemiah sermon intro video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JlkTrh0mN-Q
A wide-open mouth, a bug-eyed look, a thumping heart, and a desire to chop an evil doer in the neck…these were all my reactions while watching “Taken.” I think its one of the best movies I’ve actually ever seen. I honestly don’t say that much. It instantly went into my top ten list. I won’t spoil the movies for those who have seen it, nor will I rehash it for those who have. But I think what made it so unforgettable was, it had pretty much everything. Both the men and women are loving it. It resonates with us all. We all want to feel rescued in some way because we all secretly know we’re lost. We all want someone who loves us enough to pursue after us. That might sound really strange for a guy since we’re supposed to be the ones pursuing, but still its true. Why is this movie such a hit? Its because it answers the screams of the world from deep within, it rings true in our inner being, and it strangely connects with our souls.
Its true that most of the world either live without a father or live with an unloving father. With men who are uncommitted to their families, men who just follow their passions from woman to woman, men who won’t stand and do the right thing, men who have no self-control, men who are lazy, men who don’t fight for their families, men who don’t love their children, men who don’t lead their wives, men who don’t stick around, men who don’t work hard, men who are harsh, and men who just don’t give a crap…the world knows all about these men. These pains and hurts run so deep that people continue to feel the affects into their elderly years…and even to their death beds. Continue reading
Have you ever been in a witnessing situation when you just weren’t sure what to say? I’m talking about a time when you were growing and learning so much about Christ that at times you might get excited and say too much to an unbeliever who wasn’t quite ready to hear it all. Have you ever felt at other times that you should have said way more? Situations like those are exactly the reason why we’re studying the book of Deuteronomy. You are in these situations and conversations every single day. Every day your conversations could and should give you a way to talk to others about Jesus and everything surrounding salvation in Him. My goal through Deuteronomy is that you understand the gospel better, and that you are better trained to share it with everyone. Continue reading
This week, President Barack Obama was inaugurated into the office of the President of the United States. As a Christian, I certainly disagree with him on major moral issues such as abortion and homosexuality. But on the other hand, his life and inauguration is an amazing story of our nation overcoming its sin of prejudicial racism! President Obama was sworn in on the Bible of former President Abraham Lincoln who God used to abolish slavery in America. So what is the Presidential Inauguration all about? It’s ultimately all about the President agreeing to obey and defend the Constitution of the United States. That is so close to what is happening in Deuteronomy! Continue reading
This is an unprecedented, historical week for me. I bought and closed on a house! With all of my running around the past decade, I’m so excited to finally be settled here at this church, with this student ministry, and in this area. I’m amazed with how God has been preparing me for this ministry. Just over a year ago now, I had been in my previous church for 3 years, and all the other four pastors I was serving with had resigned. I was left with leading that church, but God used it to prepare me for the next. Meanwhile, God had brought awesome youth pastors before me to this church, and prepared the student ministry to be passionate worshippers, attentive learners, and humble servants. When I got here, it was obvious that this is what God had been planning all along.
Everything I just said was absolutely true, but I also wrote it as an example of what God is doing with Deuteronomy 1 – 4 (read it). Continue reading
I’m not really used to revivals. I’ve been in them before, but not a whole lot. When our pastor dropped the bomb that not only would we be doing a revival this year, but we’d also have a ton of work to prepare for it and would need a lot of money from our different ministry budgets to pull it off…I was not initially overly excited. All “revival” meant to me was an evangelist coming into your church to preach a shallow gospel, to twist people’s arms to believe in Christ, and to sing an invitation song with 15 choruses to manipulate people to walk down the aisle. This revival “HarvestFEST” that God had in store for us was totally different.
We had an incredible speaker, Dr. Ronnie Hill, come in. Ronnie is especially known and gifted for speaking to teenagers. So our pastor told me that it was youth who Ronnie would more naturally reach. He was right. This dude was good. I got him into a couple of schools to speak with about 250 students before school…at 7am. Many students received Christ there. Then we invited those student, and along with our church students inviting their friends, we had around 600 teenagers counted who came to revival this past week. Continue reading