When You’ve Got A Problem, June 30, 2013

2 Kings 4:1-7 – this widow had a problem
1. she came with a problem – she was at her end
  – there is nothing like a good problem that gets us to our knees and to God
2. she came with what she thought was important – appealing with her past, her accomplishments, and her track record
  – we must appeal to the mercies of God instead
3. she discovered what was really important – she is asked what do you want, and what do you have in your house
  – she thought she had nothing or what she did have was useless
  – God can make something from nothing but He delights in taking what we have and using it
  – it is not what you wish to have but what you have that God wants to use – we all have something
4. ask big (v.3) – get as many as you can
5. sometimes God does His greatest work behind closed doors (v.5)
– it is when we become something that God becomes nothing – it is when we are empty that we can be filled
– God seems to do His best work with broken and empty things

The Holy Spirit in You, June 23, 2013

– who is the Holy Spirit? What does He do? How does He work?
– His identity
  – Hebrew word “ruwach” means wind/breath
  – Greek work “pnuema” means breath/breeze
  – we can literally think of the Holy Spirit as the “Breath of God”
– the Holy Spirit is the third person of the trinity
  – omnipotent – all powerful (Luke 1:35)
  – omnipresent – everywhere at once (Ps. 139:7)
  – omniscient – all knowing (1 Cor. 2:10)
  – eternal (Heb. 9:14)
  – equal (Matt. 28:19, 2 Cor. 13:14)
– the Holy Spirit was part of all things, from the very beginning of Scripture to the very end
  – He moved upon the face of the waters and was the active agent in creation. Jesus was the Word, the Holy Spirit moved. (Gen. 1:1-2, 27)
  – in the Old Testament, Job recognized He had given him life (Job 33:4)
  – King David of Israel knew the presence of the Holy Spirit (Ps. 139:7-10)
  – the prophet Joel prophesized that the Holy Spirit will be given in future days (Joel 2:28-29)
  – the Holy Spirit gave us the Word of God (2 Peter 1:20-21)
  – the Holy Spirit has always worked with Jesus: birth (Matt. 1:20), life and ministry (Luke 4:1,18,Heb. 9:14), the resurrection (Rom. 1:4)
  – the Holy Spirit regenerates our spirit when we accept Jesus into our life and is present throughout the ages (John 3:6, Rev. 22:17)
– Personhood of the Holy Spirit
  – the Holy Spirit has emotions – grieves (Isa. 63:10), loves (Rom. 15:30), has a mind (Rom. 8:27), speaks (2 Sam. 23:2, Acts 13:2, Rev. 2:7), knows (1 Cor. 2:11)
– the Holy Spirit relates to us as a person
  – He teaches us things about God and ourselves (John 14:26), He guides us in truth (John 16:13), He prays for us (Rom. 8:26-27), He gives us life (John 6:63)
– the ministry of the Holy Spirit is to primarily serve two purposes in the life of every believer. It will produce a quality of life that is referred to in Scripture as holiness (Gen. 5:22-25). It will also provide the power for us to participate in the works of the Kingdom of God, including fulfilling the Great Commission (Mark 16:15-18).
  – He convicts us of our need for God, prompting repentance (John 16:8-11), He affirms our position as children of God (Rom. 8:15), He changes us (Gal. 5:22-23), He speaks truth (John 16:12-14), He comforts us with peace (Acts 9:31, 2 Cor. 5:5-7), He gives us spiritual gifts and empowers us to be on mission (Acts 1:8)
– important principles to remember:
  1. the Holy Spirit is God, but He is a person, not an “it”
  2. the Holy Spirit’s mission is to reveal Jesus and build His charcter into our lives
  3. the Holy Spirit gives spiritual gifts and empowers us to do what God has called us to do

Fathers Show Up, June 16, 2013

Deut. 6:4-5
– 24 million children in America – on out of three – live in biological father-absent homes
– Father factor – in poverty, in emotional and behavioral problems, in maternal and child health, in incarceration, in crime, in teen pregnancy and sexual activity, in child abuse, in childhood obesity, in education.
– three “super powers” every man has:
  1. the super power of example – “you are important to me – so I’m here.” Example is a statement declared by our actions.
  2. the super power of safety – a strong man is a safe man. He is safe to be with, safe to talk to, and safe to trust. True strength means that your contribution brings strength to the lives of others.
  3. the super power of faith – did you know that when both parents attend church regularly with their children, then 72% of the children will remain faithful to attend church? When dad attends with their children 55% remain faithful; when mom attends with their children 15% remain faithful to attending church regularly. When neither parent attends church, only 6% remain faithful.
– when fathers are absent, negative things happen. Children go searching for love in the wrong places
– bad things heppen when dads don’t show up, but really, really good things happen when dads do show up
– every man wants to be a hero to someone.

I Will Restore, Guest Speaker Kirk Bowman, June 9, 2013

“I will restore” – God
– as we journey through life, things happen
– sometimes it’s God pruning us (John 15:2)
– sometimes when we lose ground, it’s simply our fault (Prov. 19:3)
– sometimes it’s others choices or actions
– sometimes it’s the devil (John 10:10)
– sometimes then there are times when we feel like things are taken away from us. – no matter what the reason is, God is a restorer.
Isa. 61:7, the Message, NASB – double with joy
Joel 2:25-26
– Job’s real story is a story of incredible restoration (Job 1:1-12)
1. God’s hand on = blessing, God’s hand off = curse (Job 1:10, Mal. 3:8-10)
2. the restoration story is bigger than you
3. God always restores to better than before (Job. 42:10-13)

What If The Church? Part 3, June 2, 2013

– what if the church comes together under three basic values?
1. Christ centered – confessing Jesus as Lord (Matt. 16:13-20, Rom. 10:6-15, Eph. 4:3-5)
  – no congregation is everything to everyone. But every congregation is something to someone.
2. catalyzing relationships – across visible & in visible lines (racial, denominational, socio-economic, etc) (John 13:34-36, John 17)
3. city transformation – bringing spritual and physical wholeness to our city (Micah 6:8-9, Isa. 58)
– when the church comes together barriers come down (Matt. 16:13-19)
– there are all kinds of barriers in Kansas City: economic, ethnic, political, religious, etc.
– how can we see the barriers come down in our city?
1. we must agree on who Jesus is – “you are the Christ, the son of the living God”
  – if I believe in Jesus – and you believe in Jesus – we have more in common than all of our differences combined
2. we must decide to love – especially when it is hard (John 13:34-35)
  – how will we convince the world that we love them when we don’t even love each other?
  – if God is blessing what you are doing, then I like it – even if I don’t understand it.
3. we must charge the gates of hell together – Jesus did not describe or desire a church in retreat mode. (Matt. 16:18)
  – God wants to partner with us in plundering hell and populating Heaven. There’s no better time to start than now.
Ps. 133:1-3 – choose the commanded blessing over the general blessing