Sent: Pure Religion

I continue to look at our mission as the Church. Jesus was Sent into this world and has Sent us to join in that mission. In this sermon we look at Jesus’ care for those most vulnerable and our responsibility to care for those at risk of being oppressed by the world.

When Christians Fail You… (Christian edition)

There is a lot of hurt and pain in the world. In my opinion, Christianity should be a place of healing, wholeness, and forgiveness for that hurt and pain. Unfortunately this is often not the case. I can’t even count the number of people I have encountered in the last twenty years who had deep wounds caused by those who wear the name “Christian.” Lately I have been thinking about this and pondering what message might be helpful to my fellow Christians who have experienced pain at the hands of their brothers or sisters in the Church or the organization of the Church. I am not sure I have any easy answers or the perfect answer but read on if you want my perspective.

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Sent: How Can They Hear?

In the second week of my mission series I examine how we are sent to proclaim the good news of Jesus to those around us. Jesus saw part of his mission being proclaiming the kingdom and so he sends us with the same mission. When we miss this part of the mission, we may do lots of practical things for folks, but they may never know the abundance of God’s love that we enjoy without hearing that good news.

Sent: The Great Confusion

Jesus was Sent to this world on a mission. When he ascended into heaven, he gave that mission over to his Church to continue it in his name. In this sermon, we look at how Jesus saw his own mission through the prophet Isaiah and in turn what our mission is to be.

Artificial De-Intelligence

“Come with me if you want to live.” A famous line from one of my favorite franchises growing up. Terminator brought the fear of artificial intelligence taking over the world into the mainstream. It became so ubiquitous with the thought that even broaching the topic will bring the obligatory “Skynet!” response. If you have followed any media in recent years, you have likely seen a few stories [1][1][1] Check out Elon Musk, Steven Hawking, and Bill Gates on the topic or for a funnier take look at Flight of the Conchords take; warning there are some curse words in that last one about popular science and tech minds decrying the danger of artificial intelligence. Recently I watched a video that has me thinking about completely unintentional consequences when it comes to AI which may be more scary and no one is talking about them.

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Encountering God in Fasting

Fasting has become a hot topic lately. Several diet fads have popped up that include some sort of fasting. Friends of mine a little over a year ago began fasting one day a week following one of these diets. Lately the idea of “intermittent fasting” has caught on. Fasting has been around a long time and practiced among many spiritual traditions for millennia. Today’s fad of fasting is slightly different than the practices of old though. These fads are for the goal of losing weight and overall physical health, but the ancient practice is usually for spiritual growth.

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Encountering God in Meditation

I continue my look at practices to help us encounter God daily. “Meditation” is talked about the through the Psalms and alluded to in other Scriptures. Church tradition has placed meditation high on the list of spiritual disciplines. This week I will explore the topic of meditation and look at two simple forms you can use daily.

Encountering God in Prayer

I start a new series this week on what it means to “Encounter” God daily. We tend to look at our time with God as “devotions” but that puts an emphasis on our side of the relationship and ignores the presence God wants to share with us. Starting our exploration about daily encounter with God demands that we look at the practice of “Prayer.”

The People of God: Family

In this last week of my series on what it means to be “The People of God” I take a look at the analogy used more informally, “Family”. The Scriptures refer to Christians as brothers and sisters, and Sons of God. What do these sayings mean for who we are in the world?