December 13 2016

Christmas Joy

If you’ll indulge me for a moment…..I am a baseball fan.    I look back a couple months to the end of baseball season this year.    The Chicago Cubs won the World Series.   That just SOUNDS strange to say that!   

The Cubs haven’t won a World Series since 1908.  Some might suggest that there is a valid reason for that:    

From “Wikipedia”:   

The Curse of the Billy Goat was a sports-related curse supposedly placed on the Chicago Cubs Major League Baseball franchise in 1945 by Billy Goat Tavern owner William Sianis that lasted in a 71-year period from 1945 to 2016. Because the odor of his pet goat, named Murphy, was bothering other fans, Sianis was asked to leave Wrigley Field, the Cubs' home ballpark, during game 4 of the 1945 World Series. Outraged, Sianis allegedly declared, "Them Cubs, they ain't gonna win no more," 

Now…no matter HOW we view the idea of curses….and I don’t place a lot of stock in them…..

The general JOY and excitement about the Cubs winning this year was interesting.   It seemed like in October that Cubs fans were coming out of the woodwork to cheer them on!    I had no idea my Facebook Friends list was so full of Cubs fans!    

There was absolute elation and joy when they won the World Series.     

Today…I want to talk about JOY.   What is Joy?    What is Biblical Joy?   Why do we talk about Christmas Joy?   What’s it mean to us?     Let’s take a look:     

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December 6 2016

Such a Time as This

Note:    There is 1 minute of intentional silence as the beginning of the mesage.   You will hear footsteps and me breathing a I took a sip of coffee.   This was an idea I borrowed from another preacher as an introduction to make a point.   

Every year, the Christian church celebrates the anniversary of the coming of our Lord – of God choosing to step out of Heaven and taking the form of a baby – to be born a human being.  Jesus lived, and died as a human being – he is fully God and fully man.  He rose from the dead.  He died in our place – so that we would not be punished for our sin – but he instead took the punishment for our sins.     

So, today, we recognize the 2nd week of Advent Season – so we are looking forward to that special day when we remember that he came.    

Today…I want to recognize the special significance of the TIME…of the very moment that Jesus came.    Did you know it was not just a random time that Jesus came?    God knew from the very beginning that he was going to send Jesus to die for us…and it wasn’t a coincidence that the world looked like it did at that very moment.  God wasn’t just HOPING that the world would be ready for him.    Our God planned it out very specifically—very intentionally for that moment.    

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December 1 2016

What will you be remembered for?

What is truly important in life?     It’s interesting…when I was a teenager…I thought I’d live forever.    Now as a middle-aged man…I’m starting to think ahead – realizing that in only about 25 years….I’m looking at retirement.     Things change.    

Talk to an older person, and you might find them looking back on their life….and realizing that maybe they’d have liked to do things differently.     Or maybe they are happy with the way they’ve lived their life.        Think with me today……what will YOU think about your life someday when you look back on it?   What will be your legacy?  

Today, we see God’s Word talking about that – the legacy that a young pastor will have left behind.    As Christians…we’d do well to consider this – what will WE be remembered for?   What is OUR LEGACY?    

I really like this chapter of the Bible.   We’re challenged to look at our own lives,  at our own faith and ask the tough questions.     Where are we going?  What are we doing?    What’s important to us?   

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