Summer Worship: Don’t miss the possibility!

Christ meets us in the summertime too. Don’t miss an opportunity for growth in faith. Cheatham Memorial has a summer focus on teaching the equipping-skills that make our discipleship and disciple-making fun, fruitful and frankly, possible! Over the summer we will talk about concrete tools like public and private prayer, and study, small group leading. Watch for posts with “Take Aways” from this sermons

June 3,2018. 1 Samuel 3:1-20 “Equip for youth” The Skill of listening The life of faith is the key to a young soul. Our bodies age but we can keep a youthful and excited spirit by being equipped for and equipping others for healthy eternal living in the here and now! What does equipping mean anyway ?

June 10, 2018. Mark. 3:20–35 “Forgiveness is standard equipment”. The Skill of ForgivenessWe are born to forgive and lose this skill along the way somehow. When we forgive we are freed, even if others think we are crazy for doing so. How do you forgive that one who doesn’t deserve it?

June 17, 2018. 2 Corinthians 5:6-17. “I See…”.The Skill of DiscernmentDad’s only know where to go when they walk by faith. Many don’t and bear the bitter fruit of walking alone. This applies to all disciples. Discernment is a skill learned through prayer and applied in every day ways. The voice of the Spirit is often dismissed. How do you listen for God’s direction. Prayer is an essential skill.

June 24, 2018 Mark 4:35-41. “Life-Speak” The Skill of Planning for AdversityAdversity is real and essential to our witness. How do we speak of our “storms” as victory and not failure. Holding a spiritual conversation in our own words is an essential skill. How do we speak life?

July 1, 2018 Acts 20:8-17 “Pay Attention” The skill of Sacramental LivingThe sacraments are a gift to the church and a pattern for living for each disciple. How can your life be a means of grace EVERYDAY?

July 8, 2018 Mark 6:1-13 “ A Mutual Education” The skill of TeachingNo one out learns a true teacher. The gift of teaching is not upon everyone BUT the ability to teach is a skill that can be learned. We all teach others the things we know. How will we share the gospel honestly and personally.

July 15, 2018 Guest Pastor: Rev. Mike Toland!

July 22, 2018 Music and Worship with ”Tin Top Road”July 29, 2018

2 Samuel 6:1-13 “Real Might” Worship. The skill of communicationWorship is directed to the one true God but interpreted differently by different people. True might in worship is that connection between hand and heart that comes when we let down our guard and celebrate the Holy Spirit.

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Fire, Shipwrecks and Serpents: Worship for Preparation and Easter

Pour it out4

You are invited to join our Cheatham Memorial Church family for worship!  This is a brief sketch of our Lent and Easter worship.  You can also follow us on Facebook and our website www.cheathamumc.net .  If you are in our corner of East Texas, don’t drive by, drive in.  We would be honored to show you our “Welcome Home”.   Here is our worship journey toward Easter

 We need a breakthrough.  In our hearts, homes and communities we need that breakthrough of awareness of God.  God is already at work in the parts of our lives that hold us spiritually hostage.  Have we intentionally sought God?  Have we taken personal responsibility for a breakthrough of Grace.  What we lack is the intimacy with God that is key to breaking the chains. 

For our part of the breakthrough, we will focus on three spiritual practices.  They are to GIVE-time talent or tithes, FAST-at least missing lunch on Wednesdays, and PRAY-specifically for that particular move of God we desperately want and need.   This is not a weight loss program nor manipulating God for a new car but a celebration of the living resurrection of Jesus!  God will provide direction and BREAKTHROUGH

Where is God moving in your life?  What is holding you hostage-habits, addiction, relationship, employment, finances fear, health, or other?

 

 The sermons are a 5 part journey through Acts . We will gather each Wednesday Evening at 5:30 for studies, centered on our Spiritual Gifts and practices.  We will have many of our traditions but our goal is to be prepared for a personal, walking around, and living resurrection. 

March 1: Ash Wednesday

Matthew 4:1-11  “The Desert Journey”. We are setting the stage for our Lenten preparation by meeting in the desert.  In the desert we are all on the same level and totally reliant on God.  The contest for the Christ’s will is the same temptations that we experience in our daily living.  Where will our BREAKTHROUGH come?  It starts with intentionally becoming more intimate with God. 

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 March 5:  The First Sunday of Lent , Lent Begins, Holy Communion Sunday

Acts 2:42-47  “A Community on Fire”

Pentecost started a spiritual fire in the homes and workplaces of the believers.  After the overwhelming breakthrough, the new “Christian” community responded by church worship, personal worship, prayer, charity, and fellowship.  Faith was for everyday living.  Where are we being led to take the Pentecost fire?

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March 12:The Second Sunday of Pentecost

Acts 6:8-7:3, 7:54-8:1  “Discipleship’s Cost

The walk with Christ is free of charge but very Costly.  What will we pay?  What riches will be receive?

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 March 19:  The Third Sunday of Pentecost- We will have a guest Preacher, Jesse Brannen

Acts 8:25-40  “Living Water Alive” (This is my study text for the series. 

We wear our baptisms and others find the living water for themselves. There is not shame in needing a guide!  In our words, ways and relationships, we will share our water with others. 

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 March 26:  The fourth Sunday of Lent

Acts 9:1-31”The New Transfiguration

Paul’s conversion mirrors the Christ at the mount of Transfiguration.  Where did God meet you on the road.  Where is the road before you headed? 

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 April 2: The Fifth Sunday of Lent  Holy Communion

Acts17:16-31  “Knowing the Unknown”

God is made known to us with the images and experiences of daily living.  God is shared with those who live with and around us.  It is not accidental that we have the story in the exact way we need to share with those around us. 

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 April 9:  Palm Sunday: with a reading by a child at the beginning, A Children’s Play, Special Music, Procession of Palms!

Matthew 21:1-11 read by a young person or persons and possibly using the “Voice” version  as a format. 

Acts 28:1-23  “The 29th Chapter of Acts”

Help me read the 29th chapter of acts!  Oh wait, you must write it first.  The Holy Spirit is writing it through you! Thank you Terry Teykl-Check out his book here!

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April 10-15:  Holy Week

We will focus our attention on a Good Friday ,“7 Final Words Service, with several speakers .  We will also offer a prayer Labyrinth and a time of praying through the Scriptural Stations of the Cross.  Pat and are  using the stations with Children’s Church. We will plan further use of the art work throughout the church. 

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April 16: Easter Sunday

 

Easter Sunday will be tradition rich with special music, breakfast at 8:30, Easter Eggs by age group at 9:00 and rousing worship! Watch for further details on the CMUMC Website

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Cheatham Memorial September 2016 Worship!

The theme for September is is “A Work in Progress” and the image is the cross.  Yes, we have a cross in every sermon but these four message will give it more weight.  Do our prayers, presence, gifts, service and witness flow from the cross of Christ or just adorn our t-shirts?  I am asking this of myself  during quiet time.  What amazing  power the cross has in our everyday living….when we choose to access it.  How do you do that?  Come to worship and see.  We will also explore prayers of blessing and host a two-week short course on prayer, September 15 and 22 at 6:30 PM.  See cheathamumc.net for details

September 4, 2016: 16th Sunday of Pentecost  Jeremiah 18:1-11   “The Potter’s House

We are all a work in progress.  Even when life is under pressure, faith can build us even if circumstances are trying to get us down.  The greater the pressure, the stronger the earthen vessel.

September 11, 2016: 17th Sunday of Pentecost, remembrance of 9-11,  1 Timothy 1:12-17  “Strength for the Falls”

The promise of redemption if from Jesus himself.  People of faith are strengthened for the everyday “falls” that inevitably come.  Like physical fitness or a baby learning to walk, it is through our trials that we are strengthened in faith.  This gift from the Christ is for all who believe and for all who don’t.  We are all walking redemption’s path.

 September 18, 2016: 18th Sunday of Pentecost, Gideon’s Sunday with special offering.  1 Timothy 2:1-7  “Levelling Prayers” 

In the prayer closet, kings and paupers are judged the same.  This epistle is inviting us to seek God rather than asking God to seek us. How are we praying for our own spiritual formation?  How are we praying for our political and church leaders in their life’s seeking of God?

September 25, 2016: 19th Sunday of Pentecost.  Luke 17:5-10  “A starting place”

This service will be an old school revival Sunday and include our favorite “Methodist Roots” hymns in an upbeat and tradition filled worship experience! The vision of a victorious end is the start of all good journeys.  Where is our starting place in the Christian life?  The truth is that we have many starting placed in Christ.  It is a journey of many steps.  We don’t begin our life of salvation all mature and filled many answers.  We start at the foot of the cross with the harsh reality that we are not finished yet, we continue with the present reality that we don’t journey along, and we live for the completion of our journey with eternity in Christ.  That being said, how do we begin?

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Coming Events:  Charge Conference! Fall Festival on October 15 and a celebration of our fund raiser on October 16!

Summer Sermons! July & August 2016

Following is our Cheatham Memorial UMC sermon Planner for July and August 2016.  Our church is open to anyone seeking to deepen their faith and take part in significant ministry as a way of life.  Our Motto is “WELCOME HOME” and we know our congregation to be about these three things:  Fist, our Mission:  Making Disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the World; second  our Vision: We are Christ’s Love in Action: Following Christ, Serving Others, Unifying the Church. And finally, Our motivation:  Loving God’s Word, Deepening the life of Prayer and developing ministering Skills.  For more information on how we do that, click here and check out our activities on the main website. 

July 3:  7th Sunday of Pentecost

Text:  Psalm 33:6-17, Philippians 3:17-21 “God Country”

We live in the greatest nation with the greatest faith, the largest economy and the greatest technology in the history of the world.  How did we get it and how do we keep it?  Things seem pretty uncertain and we desperately need to look for this answer!  Join us with a theological look at what it means to be a Christian in the USA today.

 July 10: 8th Sunday of Pentecost

Luke 10:25-37  “The very first Lawyer Joke”

There are many lawyer jokes but only one that I know of in the Bible and it comes from one of the best known of all of Jesus’ parables.  Which one?  Look it up and see.  Do you get the joke?  How does your, mine and our faiths fit together?

 July 17  Vacation Bible School Wrap Up Sunday

Luke 10:38-42  “Kids Remember What Grownups Forgot”

God speaks volumes through children.  If you want to know God-Sized answers to God-Sized questions you must take on the manner of a child.  What does that look like and how do I get it?

July 24  “Lawn Chair Worship Sunday”

Revival Theme.  The text will be announces later for this morning of fun, barbecue and praise.  Outside service at 9:00 AM followed by too much food and lots of music!  See the main website for details.

 July 31  Lawn Chair Sunday Rain out Day

Colossians 3:1-11 “You Find What You Look For”

August 7:  Youth Service at 10:00 and Youth Rally at 2:00

Youth Speaker

August 14:  Block Party Celebration

Hebrews 11”1-13  “A Love Song for the Vineyard”

I’m tired, where is the faith I need for today?  The church is a fertile vineyard and Christ loves his church.  Still, some days we fall short of Christ’s vision.  The fruit of His vineyard is faith and faith is the seed where that fruit begins.  We will discuss our every-day starting place to find and cast that faith for ourselves.

August 21:  Back to School Consecration Sunday

Jeremiah 1:4-10 “Only a Child can Know”

We think of children as needing our teaching but often they are the example of faith for us grown-ups.  Faith is supposed to grow in us and mature .  Not knowing how the things of faith work is not an excuse.  I our “not-Knowing” are the seeds of exciting spiritual formation.  How do we build and plant that necessary faith?

August 28 15th Sunday after Pentecost

Hebrews 13:1-16  “Hospitality’s Gift”

Our church knows what hospitality looks like and knows that it is a FAITH BUILDER!  We are very strong in opening our home to others.  What do we get out of it?  Is it ok if we get something out of it?  We will discuss that gift that we get in return regardless of what our guests leave behind.

Coming Events:  Gideon’s Sunday on September 18,  Fall Festival on October 14 and a celebration service on October 15

 

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June 2016 Sermons at Cheatham Memorial

compass of faith

The Cheatham Memorial Family invites you to join us for worship at 10:00 am each Sunday.  We have a variety of activities and service projects that you can check out at our WEBSITE!

Do you ever feel like you have lost direction?  We will discuss ways to “Face the Fire by Faith”.  What do I do with faith in a world that seems so random.   Transformation is a mystery that begins and ends with faith.  The fun stuff lies in the middle.  Find your way with us as we seek Christ together.

June 5:  The 3rd Sunday of Pentecost, Communion Sunday,

Text:  1 Kings 17:8-24 “Now What”

Transformation in the soul is built by our experiences in the day to day.  We need companions for the journey and our eye on God.  With each day’s ups and downs, let’s face it, faith can just be difficult.  And yet we grow through these experiences.

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June 12: 4th Sunday of Pentecost. 

Text: Galatians 2:15-21,” Faith is Dead Right”

The way to faith is faith.  God is faithful to plant the seeds of faith within us and water them with our experiences. Faith expressed leads us to faith experienced.   “Paul speaks of what kind of sinner he is and asks, “what kind of sinner are you?”

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 June 19: 5th Sunday of Pentecost, Father’s Day

Text Luke 8:26-39  “Hey, those are my pigs!”

A dad’s promise does not come from a perfect life but by following a perfect Jesus.  Faith opens our eyes to our own brand of distress and randomness.  Rather than excuse our lives as “Just the way it is”, a new way is given, by faith, to all who will fearlessly face the challenge.

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 June 26:  6th Sunday of Pentecost

Text:  2 Kings 2:1-14  “Pass it on”

Faith is not a possession to hold but one to nurture and pass on.  Our companions in life feed our faith but also depend on us to build them up too.  Leadership is successful when we let god and watch another grow.

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May 2016 sermons at Cheatham Memorial UMC

The Cheatham Memorial Family invites your to a brand new year of Spiritual Growth in Jesus Christ?  We worship at 10:00 AM each Sunday with activities for disciples of all ages and places.  The Theme for May is preparation for Pentecost and titled, “God Led Change” and focuses on spiritual unity and prayers of discernment. Mother’s day is May 2016

Check out our website for more information about our ministry

May 1: The 6th Sunday of Easter, Communion Sunday,
Text: Acts 5:17-40, “ The First Church of the Cup Holder”
The question is asked, will we attend a church where we aren’t in control. The answer is yes because control is illusion to we who are in Christ. Discernment and not management are the goals for Christian living and the peace that it provides.
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May 8: Mother’s Day and the 7th Sunday of Easter. Prayers for General Conference
Text: John 14 23-29 “ ‘Cause Momma Says…”
Discernment is obedience, Obedience requires Discernment. True peace in our childhood came when we did what our parents said to do. However, that came with the comfort in knowing, even when we did not show it, that they wanted only what was best for us. Our heavenly father operates in that same loving way and is worthy of our trust. We will follow someone or something in our daily living. God offers a peace that we cannot find anywhere else.
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May 15: PENTECOST SUNDAY
Text Acts 2:1-21, “The Pouring”
You cannot discern what God wants apart from the Holy Spirit because the Holy Spirit IS God. Pentecost is not the beginning of the Holy Spirit but the pouring of that precious facet of God into the Church.
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May 22: Trinity Sunday
Text: Romans 5:1-5, “Produce the proper Produce”
Faith is where the life in Christ starts. The produce is character that proclaims truth and spreads the message of eternal hope. The Holy Trinity is merely a framework of understanding. How scary it is to pray for faith though! Faith is access, the open door and worth the risk
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May 29: Memorial Day Weekend, Annual Conference Kick off
Text : Galatians 1:1-12 “Winning”
Half of the struggle in Discerning God’s will for our lives is knowing what a “win” is. What is the goal line of the life in faith, What is a win for the church. Where is the win for our lives? Our congregation? Our Conference? Jesus has a direct and final answer!
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The April 2016 Sermon Schedule

April brings the spring  and a newness to our faith journeys.  Easter has given us the faith of an empty tomb!  These scriptures have been chosen to reflect the four gifts of the cross-the final point of our Lenten sermons.  Forgiveness, Righteousness, Faith-Sight, and Ministry are given to us at the cross and lived in the resurrection in everyday life.  These gifts are for the here and now as well as the hereafter.  Come and join us in worship!  For more details check us out at Cheathamumc.net

April 3:  The second Sunday of the Easter Season  “Every Eye” Revelation 1:4-8

The first gift of the cross is that of a Jesus focused sight.  In Christ we simply see things differently.  The tomb is empty and is the bedrock of the Christian’s faith.  It is a place of victory and eternity rather than a place of death and finality.   Seeing our everyday with the focus of Jesus makes for healthier and eternal living.

 

April 10:  The third Sunday of the Easter Season  “Right Away”  Acts 9:1-20

The second gift of the cross is the forgiven life.  With our ransom paid at the cross we live with the righteousness of Jesus as our guide and goal.  By faith through Jesus’ gift to us we have this righteousness!  It is a responsibility as well as a privilege!  Living out of Jesus’ righteous freedom makes for healthier and eternal living.

April 17:  The fourth Sunday of the Easter Season  “Healing Right Away”   Acts 9:36-43

Jesus is still in the healing business but not always in the way that we imagine it should be.  The final gifts of the cross are being forgiven and made worthy for ministry.  Peter had denied Jesus and squandered many opportunities for faith.  Yet, this story show him to be used of God for a dramatic healing event.  Being healed of our sin puts us in a position to minister in a way that makes for healthier and eternal living

April 24:  The fifth Sunday of the Easter Season “Laity in Ministry Sunday”

Our lay leadership, with Judi Yarbrough bringing the message, will share our ministry from the last year  in pictures, word and song. This will be an exciting service of praise for the shared ministry of Cheatham Memorial UMC!

See you Sundays at 10:00!

 

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The January 2016 Sermon Schedule

The Cheatham Memorial Family invites your to a brand new year of Spiritual Growth in Jesus Christ?  We worship at 10:00 AM each Sunday with activities for disciples of all ages and places.   The Theme for January centers around our church family’s growth goals:  Loving Scripture, Deeping the life of prayer, and developing our basic skills for ministry.  Each message will include everyday ways of doing and being a growing Christian.

Watch our website for our many worship, learning, service and fellowship activities!  Here are our study offerings.  Everyone is invited to search the sermon text BEFORE worship and then follow up with the Sermon briefs afterward.  Here are our offerings for January!

January 3, 2016:  Three Kings Sunday-“Epiphany”  Matthew 2:1-12  “Becoming a Star“.  We will search this story, which everyone thinks they know, and find some details that are their plus some things we thought but aren’t there.  In this story we will celebrate the role of searching with the eyes of Christ for grace in our everyday living.

January 10, 2016:  Baptism of the Lord Sunday, Ecclesiastes 3:1-13, “For Such a Time as This”.  In this passage that some call the “Desiderata”, we will celebrate and discover the role of timing in our everyday life in Christ.  Not just any timing but that of God’s timing.

January 17, 2016: the Second Sunday after Epiphany, 1 Corinthians 12:1-11, “You’ve Got This”.  Have you ever said, “Spiritual gifts?  I don’t have any.”  Wrong!  “A demonstration of the Spirit is given to each person for the common good” 1 Cor 12:7.  Everyone has gifts from God to use for God.  By using them we watch God build us and others.  We no satisfaction and peace that we never knew was possible.

January 24, 2016: The Third Sunday after Epiphany, 1 Corinthians 12:12-31a, “Pieces, Parts and Whole”  In this often quoted text we will celebrate the role of order in our discernment of God’s direction for our everyday living.  We each are a part of someone else’s lives as well as taking care of our own.

January 31, 2016:The Fourth Sunday after Epiphany, 1 Corinthians: 13:1-13, “Never Fails….: This is a continuation of last week’s text and a discovery of our driving motivation to be and become a Christian disciple-LOVE.  The very word is often abused and misused.  To grow in grace is to grow in love in our everyday living.  This is more than a wedding scripture!!

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December and Advent 2015 Sermon Schedule, Cheatham Memorial UMC

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Click Here for the CMUMC website!

The Cheatham Memorial Family invites your to Celebrate the Christmas season at 10:00 AM each Sunday.   The Christmas special music is from the musical “Mary Did You Know” and is centered around 5 questions “Did you know…..?  We would be honored to be a part of your family’s Christmas.

Watch our website for our many worship, learning, service and fellowship activities!  Here are our offerings for November.  If you are viewing this from far away,  Check out our Smart phone Bible study BEFORE the sermon and the Sermon briefs as a follow up after the sermon!

December 6: 2nd Sunday of Advent “Christ the Way”  Text: Luke 3:1-6  “John the Methodist”.  Did you know that God had, has and will always have a plan for your life?

December13:  3rd Sunday of Advent “Peace”.  Text: 13:2-13  “What about us?” Did you know that God has a plan for your life and living to succeed?  This will NOT BE A REGULAR SERMON! Our mission project for this season in an “Angel Tree” ministry to about 50 of our local families.  at 10:30, we will dismiss to the fellowship halls to prepare these gifts!  Everyone will have a task to do !:

December 20:  4th Sunday of Advent  “JOY”.  Text Luke 1:39-45  “Why Such a Hurry?”.  Did you know that when we recognize Jesus JOY breaks out?

December 20 at 4:00 pm we will host a community service of old fashioned carols and special music at the Edgewood Heritage Park’s “Church in the Wildwood”.  This is an amazing and fully restored  building that housed our congregation in 1897.  Make this a part of your family traditions!

December 24: Christmas Eve  “Completion”.  Text Luke 2:1-20  “Just as They Had Been Told”.  Did you know that you are the only gift Jesus wants on His birthday?  This will be a traditional service with music, special songs, our Children’s choir, candle lighting and Holy Communion.  All Christians are welcome to take communion with us.

December 27:  Christmas +1, Text Luke 2: 41-52  “What his Parents knew”.  Did you know that in Christ Christmas NEVER ends

Weekly Sermon Brief: November 15, 2015, “The Church isn’t a church isn’t at Church”, Mark 13:1-8

 

Click here to read This week’s text for this sermon bite.

This past Saturday I was rewarded with an honor that shows that my vast array of gifts and graces are finally being recognized  Members of our Historical Society, who care for our magnificent Edgewood Heritage Park ( it is a living museum!), sought carefully and bestowed upon me the august honor, I sniff back a tear just thinking about it, of making me a Judge, yes a juSlide1dge…..of the pinto bean competition.

While I am only a talented amateur at this time, with the proper training, focus and motivation I might go professional in the future.  Sadly, the title would not fit onto my business cards but I will prevail as people recognize this honor and see me in the light of a true pinto bean judging professional.  And when the pronounce, out of jealousy, that I am full of beans, I will proudly proclaim my gracious thanks for recognizing this wonderful filling within me.  Hallelujah and amen.

Silly isn’t it?  Be we  often have trouble see ourselves in our real significance as a redeemed child of God.  The disciples in our story have spent the day being taught by the one who spoke creation into existence and at the end of the day, all they can say is, “wow, we sure have a beautiful church.”

Look at the title;  The Capital “C” Church is the worldwide saving enterprise of which our small “c” church-congregation is a part.  and while it meets at the Church-House or sanctuary, of which we are blessed to have a great facility, the building is NOT the church.  Those smiling people at the top of the post are the real sure enough, Jesus following, Spirit led CHURCH. 

Slide2Admittedly the Jerusalem Temple was a big deal. Originally built in 957 BC, Destroyed around 604 BD, Rebuilt a century later and then remodeled just before the time of Christ’s earthly ministry, it was a huge facility that was more than a church.  This was an icon of the Jew’s national, racial and religious identity.

To the Jew, the Temple was a sign that God’s victory over the world and was a center of the world and not just the center of Israel.  The Temple is where God lives and provided a place to speak to and about God!  This was where people were led to God and learned the stories that edified faith.  However, it had sadly become and idol to some and an amusement park to others rather than a power center of God.  The Roman invaders used it as a tool of manipulation.  By controlling Temple worship and giving local leaders municipal “Bean Judge” type titles, a small force would control big crowds through brutality and civic organization.

Jesus would prophesy in verse 2 of the destruction in 70 AD.  It would beSlide3 the building that was defeated and not God!  This took the newly forming Christians back to the desert tabernacle and dispersed them throughout the world.  Jesus was taking the formal faith of the temple back to its roots.  He speaks of false messiahs, soul stealing rumors, family upheaval, political and natural disasters and redeems them from sources of fear to the validation of this new faith in Jesus the Christ, our God incarnate.  Jesus told them to expect these things, be ready for injustice and to speak in the power of the Holy Spirit.   The Christ would call for patience as “the Gospel must first be preached to all nations.”

This past Friday, this old pattern would come to call in the attacks in France:   At this writing there are 129 dead  with 352 others wounded, 99 of them critically in premeditated and coordinated attacks — This isn’t merely terror, it is war.  This is also not faith but a false and narrow chaos dressed up as religion.

In light of the horrific attacks in Paris, terrorist  tactics haven’t really changed that much since the first Century.  Neither has the Gospel.  We can watch terror groups who wage this war on us as they prey on populations who are  desperate , and will grab onto anyone that gives hope.  Beyond the extortion and brutality, modern terror groups are fixing basic needs, Providing an identification and a purpose “organizing social welfare programs and even recreational activities for children, distributing food and fuel to the needy, and setting up clinics.”*  This helps build community around the groups ideals.  They build on earth for war while we build for the Savior and His Kingdom.

Last Friday, the command to love our enemy became far more difficult and  Romans 12 says “17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. 18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19 Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,”[says the Lord.  The voices who spout wrath  can be attractive.  But wait a minute and consider a truly Christian response to this terror.

First, DON’T FORGET GOD, we must respond by a smart faith. Rage isn’t enough.  Warmongering at all cost in the Name of God on our own will is the height of spiritless and human centered Sin.  On the other hand Peace Mongering at all cost in the name of Jesus is lazy and far less Christian.  We cannot lose our souls by replacing our faith in the risen Jesus with faith in government and weapon systems.  Seek Christ by holding fast to Christian Standards and principals and recognize in this text, that this isn’t God’s first experience with this  behavior.  We must pray, search the scriptures and engage our enemy like never before and do it AS THE CHURCH.

Second, find ways to cope NOW: take care of our kids and other sensitive people by limiting the terrible images.  Stay informed but don’t add to the sensationalism of the Media.  Stay connected with God in prayer, study, service and worship.  Keep it real and not just routine to keep the fear in perspective. Be prepared to grow spiritually and be challenged in this “Desert Spirituality” in its great cloud of unknowing- “Wars and rumors of wars”.  Prepare for the future with and for the living God. We must fight by faith and remember that we do not fight alone.

Again, this is not easy but by God’s grace it is possible.  This isn’t about beans!  With the proper training, focus and motivation we will be able to judge a secure truth through the eyes of Christ.

*http://www.cnn.com/2014/06/12/world/meast/who-is-the-isis/index.html

This post is a follow-up to our sermon from last Sunday and I pray it touches your heart and that you have a church to be “Welcome Home”.  If you don’t, please click on the link below and check out our Family.  We would love to welcome you whenever you find yourself in our corner of East Texas.  Come and see us!

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click here for our website!