Dec 18, 2016
The Gift of Love (1 John 4:9-12)
Series: Advent 2016
worship-12-18-2016Love may involve emotion but it is more than that. Love is a choice, a decision, made for the benefit of another, expecting nothing in return. God loves us so he made a decision. He chose to enter our world, to stoop to our level, to become human. We celebrate that act of love at this time of year. Jesus, the God man loved us and willingly laid down his life for us. The Holy Spirit loves us and willingly indwells and guides and teaches those of us who put our faith in Jesus. Love is a gift. If you have received that gift, then look for ways to pass it on.
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  • Dec 18, 2016The Gift of Love (1 John 4:9-12)
    Dec 18, 2016
    The Gift of Love (1 John 4:9-12)
    Series: Advent 2016
    worship-12-18-2016Love may involve emotion but it is more than that. Love is a choice, a decision, made for the benefit of another, expecting nothing in return. God loves us so he made a decision. He chose to enter our world, to stoop to our level, to become human. We celebrate that act of love at this time of year. Jesus, the God man loved us and willingly laid down his life for us. The Holy Spirit loves us and willingly indwells and guides and teaches those of us who put our faith in Jesus. Love is a gift. If you have received that gift, then look for ways to pass it on.
  • Dec 11, 2016The Secret of Joy (Luke 2:8-11; John 15:9-11)
    Dec 11, 2016
    The Secret of Joy (Luke 2:8-11; John 15:9-11)
    Series: Advent 2016
    worship-12-11-2016Good news of great joy. There was great joy a couple of months ago when the Cubs won the World Series. People talked about coming together and focusing on that which was positive etc. etc. Is that the great joy of the Bible? How can we have joy when we go through struggles (see James 1:2)? While joy encompasses happiness, maybe, just maybe it is just a bit deeper. On this third Sunday of Advent we explore the secret of joy.
  • Dec 4, 2016The Mystery of Peace (Isaiah 9:6; John 14:27)
    Dec 4, 2016
    The Mystery of Peace (Isaiah 9:6; John 14:27)
    Series: Advent 2016
    worship-12-04-2016A brief look around our nation and we are fully aware of the elusive nature of peace. Wildfires ravage pristine forests. Protests and unrest over many issues. People attacked on college campuses and in urban neighborhoods. Is it possible that real peace is a myth. On this Sunday of Advent we look carefully at the one called the Prince of Peace. We will discover that real peace begins with relationship.
  • Nov 27, 2016Hope for Humanity: Isaiah 40
    Nov 27, 2016
    Hope for Humanity: Isaiah 40
    Series: Advent 2016
    worship-11-27-2016There are many things for which we hope. We hope our children will turn out well. We hope we will do well on an exam. We hope our team will win. We hope we can get off work for a special event. But the hope offered by God and realized by the birth of Jesus Christ is more than a wish or a desire. It is an eager expectation of a reality based on the evidence that God is able to bring about his purposes. In Jesus we discover hope for humanity.
  • Nov 20, 2016Does God Really Understand? Isaiah 53:1-3; Hebrews 2:14-18
    Nov 20, 2016
    Does God Really Understand? Isaiah 53:1-3; Hebrews 2:14-18
    worship-11-20-2016No matter what we hear, it seems that it is easy to wonder if God really understands. The fact is, if we really believe the text of the Bible, then we do have a God who is personally aware of what we face in life. In fact it was the plan all along that Jesus would be fully human not just to go through the human experience but also to be the only one who could atone for our sins. God really understands, and more.
  • Oct 31, 2016How do I love my neighbor whose lifestyle and identity are different than mine?
    Oct 31, 2016
    How do I love my neighbor whose lifestyle and identity are different than mine?
    worship-10-30-2016We live in a time in which many believe that we have to accept everyone’s gender identity without reservation, for to do less is to completely reject them. But that is not the message of Jesus. Jesus was full of grace and truth (John 1:14). His example is one of receiving each person first as one created in the image of God. It was on the basis of love and acceptance for who they were as people that Jesus then spoke truth  and transformation into their lives. Today we explore how we can be people who hold to the clear teaching of the Bible and still love our neighbor whose identity and life are vastly different than ours.
  • Oct 30, 2016How do I love my neighbor whose lifestyle and identity are different than mine?
    Oct 30, 2016
    How do I love my neighbor whose lifestyle and identity are different than mine?
    worship-10-30-2016We live in a time in which many believe that we all must accept everyone’s gender identity without reservation or we completely reject them. But that is not the message of Jesus. Jesus was full of grace and truth (John 1:14). His example is one of receiving each person first as one created in the image of God. It was on the basis of love and acceptance for who they were as people first that Jesus then spoke truth into their lives. Today we explore how we can be people who hold to the clear teaching of the Bible and still love our neighbor whose identity and life are vastly different than ours.
  • Oct 23, 2016“Don’t All Lives Matter to God?”
    Oct 23, 2016
    “Don’t All Lives Matter to God?”
    worship-10-23-2016Over the past year or so we have been witness to some of the worst that we can be as Americans. Between controversy and protests over police shootings; rhetoric on the campaign trail, and a year in which Chicago has seen over 500 homicides, this has been a hard year. How should we as Christ followers respond? How can we live our lives in a practical way that sends a message that we truly love our neighbor as ourselves? Where does change begin?
  • Oct 16, 2016“God, how come life seems so unfair?” (Psalm 73)
    Oct 16, 2016
    “God, how come life seems so unfair?” (Psalm 73)
    worship-10-16-2016Maybe it is just me. But it seems that the people who are truly the “good guys” rarely win. It seems that the wealthiest, most successful, and beautiful people could care less about God, or the Bible, or any of the things that we are supposed to care about. Sometimes it is tempting to just live the way the rest of the world lives and see if it is better. Centuries ago a man by the name of Asaph was tempted to think this way and in Psalm 73 we find what he discovered
  • Oct 9, 2016Where is God when I grieve over a loss? (Lamentations 3)
    Oct 9, 2016
    Where is God when I grieve over a loss? (Lamentations 3)
    worship-10-09-2016Loss is part of life. We say goodbye to our beloved Kindergarten teacher as we move on to first grade and it is an early lesson on loss. All around us we see loss. Not just the loss of a loved one in death. But loss of possessions, loss of relationships, loss of employment, loss of reputation. Loss leads to grief. We learn from God’s Word that our God understands loss and gives us reminders that he is there and his constant presence and care is something we cannot lose.