All We Are Saying, Is Give Paul a Chance People say things all the time. Sometimes they are right on the money and sometimes not so much. Consider these predictions that didn’t quite turn out the way the speaker thought. "Who the heck wants to hear actors talk?" -- M. Warner, Warner Brothers, 1927. "Airplanes are interesting toys but of no military value." -- Marechal Ferdinand Foch, Professor of Strategy, Ecole Superieure de Guerre. "Ours has been the first and doubtless to be the last, to visit this profitless locality." -- Joseph Ives, after visiting the Grand Canyon in 1861. “What can be more palpably absurd than the prospect held out of locomotives traveling twice as fast as stagecoaches?” -- The Quarterly Review, March, 1825. Sometimes the past has something to say to us and sometimes it doesn’t. In this post and in our next one in the “giving series,” we
A Top Ten List Back in the day, nothing was better than watching Letterman’s Top Ten List. While I don’t have time for all ten, here are five from his list entitled, “Top Ten Children’s Books NOT Recommended by the National Library Association:” “Curious George and the High-Voltage Fence.” “The Boy Who Died from Eating All His Vegetables.” “Teddy: The Elf with a Detached Retina.” “Things Rich Kids Have that You Never Will.” And number one: “The Care Bears Maul Some Campers and Are Shot Dead.” Classic. Simply classic. Today, we want to look at Jesus’ top ten thoughts about giving. We covered a lot of ground in our previous blog (and asked a lot of questions), but today we simply want to outline what Jesus has to say about giving and let his words speak to us. So here we go. #10: Matthew 6:2-4 – Our motives are critical;
Who Knew? How should one look at money? For many people, the question is easily answered: Money is a good thing that makes happiness happen. But there are other voices out there that would question such an enthusiastic perspective. For instance, Paul calls the love of money the root of all evil. And he is not alone. Winston Churchill once said, “We are stripped bare by the curse of plenty.” Yikes! Mahatma Gandhi is quoted as saying: “Golden shackles are far worse than iron ones.” GK Chesterton wrote: “To be clever enough to get a great deal of money, one must be stupid enough to want it.” And just to paint the darkest picture, just listen to what Martin Luther said: “A man that depends on the riches and honors of this world, forgetting God and the welfare of his own soul, is like a little child that holds a
Why Should You Not Give One morning, Philippe Petit decided to take a walk. It was 1974. He decided that he would like to walk from one of the newly constructed Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York to the other. No big deal. Except, he decided to do it 1,350 feet above the ground on a tightrope, without any safety net whatsoever. And to make it even more insane, he walked from roof to roof without any permission whatsoever from anyone. I strongly recommend that you watch the movie (The Walk, starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt) or the documentary (Man on Wire) to get a sense for what Petit did, because it is nothing short of terrifying. See, there is something about keeping your balanced when you are a quarter of a mile above the ground that is really difficult (I tried to figure out how long it
A Preamble There’s a book out there called, The Question Behind the Question. The point is, there is always something going on behind the obvious. Even when a person asks a question, there are all sorts of things lurking nearby that, unfortunately, often went unsaid. And if you can address those lurking, unspoken questions, you are well on your way to success. Now, you may have noticed our budget is not doing great right now. Normally, churches respond to such news with a big push (a fundraising campaign, a stewardship sermon series, a thermometer in the sanctuary and things like that). We’ve chosen not to do any of those things. Instead, I have chosen to write a series of blog entries on giving. “Ah-ha!” you say. “You are nothing but a weasel. You say you aren’t going to do a stewardship drive, but here it is! It’s just on the
Being made new in Christ gives us a new allegiance to God's kingdom based on Mark 12:13-17.
Since all things are made new in Christ, we have a new status to be like Jesus in our humility (Philippians 2:3-4).
The Bible tells us we have been made new in Christ, and this means we now have a new way of serving others. This sermon is based on Romans 7:4-6.
When we become a "new creation" in Christ, we are given a new commandment based on John 13:34-35.
Mike Tyson famously said, “Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.” Good books touch our hearts. Great books kick us in the butt, and phenomenal books punch us in the mouth. Leadership and Self-Deception is a phenomenal book. Now I’ve mentioned this book on many occasions, but according to Amazon sales, it still remains on the outside of Amazon’s top one hundred books. And that is just not good enough! And so allow me to give you four reasons why this book ought to find its way to the top of your reading list. First, while it sounds like a business book and talks a lot about business, it is not a business book. And while leadership is in the title and talks a lot about leading, it is not a leadership book. In fact, it is a novel about how we fail to love and
In this series, we trace the big story of the Bible from cover to cover. This sermon examines the story of Israel using 1 Peter 2:9-10 as our launching pad.
Our dog Moose has great ears. They are big and floppy, and he loves it when we rub them. When Moose was just a tiny pup and still with his littermates, one of the other puppies bit off a sizable piece of Moose’s right ear. Originally, all the litter was named after fish (for example, there was Puffer, Trout, Bass, Pickerel and so forth). We’re not sure which of the hooligans took a chomp out of Moose’s ear, but I always thought Shark looked awfully guilty. But in spite of the injury, Moose still has great ears. If a car door closes outside, Moose hears it. If someone drops a piece of food on the floor, Moose hears it. If someone knocks gently on the front door, Moose hears it and lets us know instantly. In fact, he hears everything, except when we ask him to do something he doesn’t
Back in the day, Mars Hill Graduate School had a journal (I guess I also ought to add that back in the day Mars Hill had a graduate school, but that is a different story). And it was a great journal, filled with interesting articles, great discussions about movies and literature, and lots of poetry (I can’t tell you how I wished I understood poetry, all those beautiful words written so flowingly, all signs of a bright and gifted mind, supposedly). But the one section that always caught my attention was the section entitled, “Reminders of God.” In it, the authors would discuss finding God in the most unlikely of places: in secular movies and books, in modern art, in heartbreaking human events and in a hundred other places where discerning any trace of God would seem quite unlikely. But he was there for anyone with eyes to see. But
The 2016 edition of our annual outdoor service went off without a hitch today. With a cool breeze to keep the heat at bay we worshipped together, followed up by a great cookout. Check out some of the pictures below. https://www.facebook.com/riversedgecommunitychurch/posts/1745295422376553
How to deal with the greed that is in our hearts based on 1 Timothy 6:17-19
Sermon based on James 3:13-18 in the series, "Straight from the Heart."
Sermon to help us understand the root of pride in our hearts, based on 1 Peter 5:15-16, in the Straight from the Heart series.
Where does our anger originate? Sermon based on Ephesians 4:25-32, as part of the Straight from the Heart series.
How should we understand the longings and desires of our hearts? Sermon based on Psalm 63:1-5, part of the Straight from the Heart series.
I am Ally Wang, a [Chinese] visiting scholar in UMBC. Through an email from Chris and Debbie, I came to know your church. I still remember that in my first reply to the email, I cast him lots of questions, such as even, “where is the church? How far is it from my place? Could you pick me up if I want to go?” Since then, I have been going to your church and started the connection with the church. At the beginning, I had two purposes to go to the church. One is that I am really searching for something as an anchor of my life; the other is that I want to practice my English. But the pastor’s humorous sermons and his passion gave me a very deep impression. Then, many other friends through Chris and Debbie always can give me lots of encouragements. From there, I have