Conflict Makes me TIRED!
I am sure you are aware that conflict is all around us today. As the western world slowly moves away from a Christian world view the unhappiness continues to grow. Conflict is one of the more unpleasant symptoms of sinful people living in a sinful world. Its effects range from uncomfortable but momentary interactions to total relational devastation. We seem to be stuck in the cycle of people looking to justify their beliefs at the cost of being in conflict with others. So look that these three questions about conflict. I could list many more but start with these. Continue reading
Understanding God’s Relationship
For the past few weeks we have been talking about ways to overcome Discontent. The 10th commandment is the tough one because it tells us not to envy or covet. The first problem we face with discontent is comparison. What a sneaky enemy. It may start small, under the guise of admiring a friend’s new job or social finesse. Then a question creeps in: Why don’t I have that? Am I not good enough? Continue reading
From the Pastor…
During the next 6 weeks we will be spending our time on Sunday morning under the theme of “Overcoming Discontent.” We have been set up by the media and our own basic nature to live a life of discontent. It seems that we never have enough and we always want more. Each Sunday we will work with some practical tips and a sound understanding of how persons in the Bible lived content lives in a season of far less creature comforts than we have today.
Following is a prayer I picked up from a group called “Unlocking the Bible.” I have made a few changes but it would be a good prayer to start each day.
Break the Chain through Praise
The world hassles us every day; I don’t have to tell you that. Our fears, anxieties, and hurts are very real. But if we focus only on these earthly problems, then very soon the spiritual realm becomes foggy and unreal. We lose sight of God and slide into pessimism and even depression. Life loses its joy and excitement. If we limit our thinking to this world alone, it will grind us down into the dust from which we were created.
No matter how difficult or unjust our circumstances become, we can exercise our free will and choose to praise God rather than ignore Him. Praise has a strong emotional dimension-as we see in the Psalms-but it is not driven by emotions. Praise is driven by our will. That is why we must never say, “I prefer to wait and praise God when I really feel like it.” We are to praise God in all situations, in both victory and defeat, when we are in need and when we are experiencing plenty.
In fact, the times when you do not feel like praising God are precisely the moments when it is most essential to do so. The next time you are discouraged, start praising God. When you feel defeated or unable to break loose from bad habits, start praising God. When your most treasured relationships seem to be falling apart, start praising God. Why do I say this? Because praise is about what God desires us to do-it is not about the power of your circumstances. When you get your eyes o your immediate problem and put your focus on God, you redirect yourself toward what God will do for you, not what man has done to you. At that point, God can work in your life to produce real growth.
The truth for the believer is that this tangible, physical world is not the “real” world. The real world is our ultimate home-the heavenly, spiritual realm where God’s presence permeates the atmosphere. When we start to view our present life in light of this ultimate reality, things begin to change. Faith and hope take root and flourish; joy and peace grow in our hearts.
Are you ready for some Summer Fun. Well I am! And at Crescent Avenue we want to invite the community to join us. All of you remember our Mission?
This summer we want to connect with the community all summer. The best way to do that is to invite them to our church for some fun, food and music. So here is how: Continue reading
We Need Each Other
We all want to make the changes in our lives that will make us better. We desire to follow the assignment God has planned for our lives. You will not make all the changes you need to make, want to make, would love to make, plan to make, or desire to make by yourself. If you could, you would. But you can’t, so you won’t!
Throughout a major portion of my personal history I have made it a priority to read biographies of great leaders. Many of them have been mighty prophets, teachers, reformers, great business leaders, and valiant defenders of faith and freedom. I personally have favorites. As I flip through the pages of history, I most recently admire Ronald Reagan and his visionary presidency that enflamed the American dream back into our culture. Continue reading
Invite a Friend Sunday
Why do people first come to church?
The friendship factor.
The Institute for Church Growth has done research for over 40 years in the area of church growth. Most recently they asked more than 50,000 people over the last 10 years why they came to church, and between 75 and 90 percent of respondents say, “I began attending because someone invited me.” Continue reading
I have, over the span of my life, eaten many great pies. Some of you are saying so what? Well, because I believe that pie baking is about relationships. First the stories: The first great pie baker I encountered was my Grandmother Adams. Continue reading
We all love BABIES!
Over the last few months our church has seen a lot of new babies. We have baptized my new grandbaby, welcomed new babies Aiyana, Van and Gavin. You may not join me in this but I love to hear the noise of babies in church. We have said it over and over, “What a beautiful baby.” We all started there, but it has been so long that I don’t remember much about being a baby. Do you remember when you were a baby? One thing I know about babies is that they are not shy when it comes to letting you know when they want something. They will let you know when they are hungry, thirsty, sick, tired, or wet. Since a little baby doesn’t know how to talk, how can he or she tell you all these things? Right! A baby lets you know these things by crying. The baby doesn’t care if you are in church, at a movie, or eating dinner in a fine restaurant. If a baby wants or needs something, you are going to hear about it! As we get older, we learn to be more reserved about making our wants and wishes known. Or do we? One of my favorite Bible stories is the healing of blind Bartimaeus. Continue reading