A Grateful Life, Nov 24, 2013

– before gratitude can flow, ingratitude must go
– Rom. 1:18-32 – Paul’s argument:
  1. God’s wrath is revealed against the whole human race because we are all born with an innate knowledge of God which we willfully suppress (v.18)
  2. God has made himself plain to all men so that they are without excuse (v. 19:20)
  3. by turning away from God, we turned to idolatry (v. 21-23)
– Results:
  1. moral impurity (v. 24-25)
  2. dishonorable passions (v. 26-27)
  3. total social breakdown (v. 28:32)
– “God gave them up” which speaks of a judicial act of God whereby he hands man over to the natural conseque3nces of his own disobedience
– the problem with the human race is not a lack of knowledge; the deeper problem is ignoring the knowledge we already have
– first we receive from God’s hand daily blessings without ever giving thought as to where they come from
– second, we grumble about what we don’t have
Ps. 100, 69:30-32 – magnify: it can mean to make something appear greater than it is, as with a microscope or a magnifying glass, or it can mean to make something that may seem small or insignificant appear to be as great as it really is
– we are not called to be microscopes, but telescopes (Rom. 1:20-21, Eph. 1:18-19, Ps. 103:1-2)

The Generous Life, Nov 17, 2013, Pastor Susan O’Reilly

– God wants to bless us so we can bless others, God wants all of us to be generous givers
1 Tim. 6:18 Message – God wants us to live extravagantly generous lives
– “Do something for someone that can’t do anything for you” John Bunyan
Prov. 11:25
– the good samaritan parable – Luke 10:25-37 – God’s love isn’t restricted by boundaries of people groups – we are called to love, no matter what
– 3 marks of a generous life
  1. he had pity or compassion – love that looks beyond itself is a mark of compassion
  2. he took time with him (v. 34) – time is the largest commodity we possess – more important than money; what are you spending your time on? Prov. 11:24
  3. this gentleman used his time, talents and his treasure – he went over and above to care for this stranger
– “when you get giving right, everything e3lse will fall into place” Billy Graham
– freely give, freely receive
– benefits of generosity (2 Cor. 8:8)
  1. favor of God (Ps. 112:5, Deut 15:10-11)
  2. real prosperity will come to those who are generous (Prov. 22:9)
  3. legacy of impact – what we do today can go into the future
– what we do with what’s in our hands makes a difference

Enough of Consumer Christianity, Nov 10, 2013

– Luke 13:6-9 – this parable refers to the peopole not producing any fruit
– now is the time to get right with God becauxe we don’t know how much time we have left
– consumerism, in the business sense, is a concept based on customer satisfaction however God rules in Biblical Christianity – not the customer
– Biblical Christianity is sold out to the rule of God
– Biblical Christianity encompasses all that is necessary for man-kind to know and do in order to be reconciled to Him, to please Him daily, and to live with Him for all eternity
– consumerism is about consuming but not producing
– consumerism is about the deceitful and self-serving heart of man (Gen. 3:1-6)
– consumerism is about wanting all the benefits and blessing without any of the responsibility
– in consumer christianity it is about convience and not sacrifice (Matt. 10:38)
– in consumer christianity there is no towel ministry (John 13 – Jesus picked up a towel) – we need to make ourselves useful
– in consumer christianity the motto is the “consumer is king” not “Jesus is King” (Luke 6:46, 1 Cor. 6:19)
– in consumer christianity the question is not “Lord, where do you want me”, but rather, “here is what I want, do you have it?”

God’s Heart for the Orphan, Nov 3, 2013

– God’s heart for the orphan (Ps. 68:5-6, Prov. 31:8-9, Isa. 1:17, James 1:27)
– greek for “fatherless” means “orphan” – the hebrew word for orphan appears over 40 times in the old testament where God gives numerous instructions concerning their care.
– open your heart to orphans (Ps. 10:14,17-18)
– caring about orphans is a way to define your faith (James 1:27)
– recognize your responsibility (Jeremiah 7:6-7, Matt 10:8, Ps. 68:5)
– prevent children from becoming orphans (Isa. 1:17)
– help them in practical ways (Deut. 10:18)
– relieve their hurts (Matt. 25:35-36)
– defend their rights (Deut. 24:17-18)
– provide long-term solutions
– accept orphans into families (Ps. 68:5-6)
Eph. 1:4-6
– never forget the church
– Every orphan needs three things: they need a family, a church, and resources (Prov. 24:12, James 4:17)
– pray for them, speak up for them, provide for their needs, support those who support them, protect them from harm, visit them where they are, give sacrificially to them, adopt them into your family