Faith at Home

As we continue this week in our series, Standing Firm, through the New Testament letter of 1 Peter, it seems like the apostle is going off the rails. He’s been preaching a consistent and powerful message, but here it looks like he’s switching gears entirely. If you look closely, though – as we’ll do in this message – he’s being perfectly consistent with the theme he’s had running from the start. Although it looks like this passage is about wives submitting to their husbands and is thus terribly controversial, it’s about something much more important than that. Lean in with me and let’s see what Peter has to say here.

Faith at Home

You all know what a Chinese finger trap is, yes? A few months ago, I gave one to everyone in the room. Naturally, everyone who was here kept theirs in a treasured spot as you do with all your sermon freebies. I don’t suspect I need to explain to you how they work. You put your fingers in and when you try to pull them out, you discover they are trapped. The harder you pull, the more thoroughly you find yourself trapped. The trap works by taking your natural inclination—to pull harder when you’re stuck—and makes it work against you. The design tightens more the more it is stretched. In other words, when it comes to escaping from a Chinese finger trap, force isn’t going to do the trick. So, what does? Gentleness.

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Morning Musing: Mark 13:11

“So when they arrest you and hand you over, don’t worry beforehand what you will say, but say whatever is given to you at that time, for it isn’t you speaking, but the Holy Spirit.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

Have you ever been put on the spot to speak? Some people thrive in that kind of an environment. I’m not generally one of those. I’m the kind of guy who wants to have everything written out ahead of time. I’m much better on paper than in person. I’d rather put in the effort to memorize a sermon entirely than to walk into the pulpit with nothing more than an outline. In fact, I’ve done that. In seminary, our preaching classes all pushed us in the direction of preaching without notes. They wanted us to learn how to think from an outline. I refused to play ball. I wrote my sermons, memorized them word for word, and dutifully delivered them without notes. The thought of being expected to deliver more than a few words without some sort of heads up makes my stomach churn. Sometimes, though, you don’t get that chance. Sometimes you don’t get that chance and the words you’re expected to deliver are a defense of the Gospel in a pressure situation. Jesus here offers some hope for those situations.

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Share It Everywhere

As we continue our conversation about evangelism, today we finally talk about actually sharing the Gospel with others. But rather than offer some tips and tricks, we’re going to take a slightly different approach. You don’t need to learn a particular method to share the Gospel effectively. You just need to learn to see the world through a Gospel lens. Then it will come as naturally to you as breathing. Let’s talk about how with a look at one of Paul’s most famous sermons.

Share It Everywhere

Have you ever felt put on the spot? Being a preacher it kind of comes with the territory. You eventually get to where you don’t even notice it. You just expect it. For most folks, though, that’s not something you sign up for. There may be a few spotlight-seekers out there, but most folks just want to get through their day without drawing too much attention to themselves. But more often than not, being put on the spot isn’t something over which you have any control. You’re just going about your normal day-to-day activities and then…bam…there’s a spotlight and you’re the only one in it. And again, a few folks have the kind of personality that they just roll with it, but most of us freeze and start looking for the exit.

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Beautiful Simplicity

For the last couple of weeks we have been talking about our call as followers of Jesus to tell someone else about our faith in Jesus. We’ve talked about the what (connect people to Jesus) and where to start (with prayer). This week, we’re talking about what the actual message we are to share is. We have a tendency to imagine sharing the Gospel is something incredibly complex, because we think of the Gospel itself as complex. The truth is just the opposite. The Gospel is simple and so is our message about it. Let’s talk about just what this simple message is together.

Beautiful Simplicity

One of the life lessons I had set before me fairly often when I was growing up is best summed up by the acronym K.I.S.S. Anyone know what that stands for? Keep it simple…well…you fill in whatever S-word you heard put there. The idea, of course, is that it is better to keep things simple than leave them complex. Simple things are…well…simple. They’re easier to manage. They’re a lighter burden to bear. Simple is just better. Complex never made anybody’s life better.

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The Secret Sauce

As we continue in our conversation about what we should do with what we believe, Tell Someone, this week we are talking about the most essential ingredient in sharing our faith with another person. There are many things that might be considered to be the most important thing, but what we’ll talk about today really lies at the heart of the matter. Keep reading to find out what it is.

The Secret Sauce

Think for a minute with me this morning about your favorite recipe. I’m talking about the thing that if this was going to be your last meal on earth, this is what you want to have on the menu. What is the most essential ingredient in that recipe? My wife is a really good cook. Like, really good. If I was going to eat a final meal, as long as she was cooking it, I really couldn’t go wrong. There are several things she makes that would land on my list of favorites, but right near the top of that list right now is this chicken and Bisquik biscuit dish that is just amazing. She first made it several years ago, but pulled it back out a couple of months ago and it was like being reintroduced to a long, lost friend. I could have eaten that stuff until I exploded. The essential ingredient in that dish is the chicken. But not just any chicken. You really need thigh meat for it to have the flavor it needs. Better yet, when she does it with one of those whole roaster chickens you get from the deli section at the store…wow. Just, wow. How about you? What are some of the most essential ingredients in your favorite dishes?

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