For the first time since starting 3 services, I finally “hit the wall” in the 12:00 service yesterday. I preached about 10-15 minutes shorter and when I got done, I thought that I might’ve left something out! So, if you were in that service and you felt gypped ?, get the video/audio from the website tomorrow. But man, was I tired. Not sure what happened.
Now, onto some thoughts about yesterday.
At the end of the last 2 services, Dave Ruble said it well: “I believe this is one of Dave’s life sermons.” That really is true. I have been so challenged, encouraged, uplifted, and filled with hope, as I peruse more of the gospel and its implications in my life. And one of those areas has been how the power of Jesus transforms our hearts to live for Him and not for ourselves. I am so grateful that the gospel means God not only commands, but empowers. That has revolutionized my life in every area. In 2005, the Lord started to make this stuff more obvious to me in the Bible and really changed somethings in my heart in 2008. I remember it well. And I can look back, as I did yesterday, to late 1990’s when the Lord was doing this very thing…I just didn’t realize it.
One of the things that comes up from a sermon like yesterday is that people tend to hear: “well, when you say we can enjoy things of the world fully, aren’t there limits to that?” And my answer is yes, where God puts the limits. For instance, one cannot enjoy sexual immorality for the glory of God. While sex is a great gift from God, it is meant to find its full satisfaction and joy, inside the marriage covenant. God has so designed His limitations in such a way as to maximize our pleasure, not decrease our pleasure. That’s a really big deal. Limitations do not mean the decrease of joy. Rather, if God gives the limitation, it’s for the increase of joy!
Perhaps no area of Christian life has changed more for me, than in the area of inner motivation to serve and honor Jesus. I grew up in a culture that was outwardly motivational…needed a guilt trip, a motivational talk, or a heart-breaking/heart-warming story, to get me going. But here’s what the gospel does to us…it causes us to be internally motivated by changing our hearts. We see Jesus as glorious, beautiful, powerful, and awesome, and what this does, is cause other things to pale in comparison. The Holy Spirit’s job is to elevate Christ in our hearts and He does this better than anyone in the universe!
A New Inner Relish by Dane Ortlund, takes you on a journey of how Jonathan Edwards saw the work of regeneration in the Christian’s life. It is a wonderful read and a place where I gleaned a few thoughts from yesterday. This book helped me understand how the gospel changes our motivations.
Eyes Wide Open by Steve DeWitt is one of my absolute favorites. It helps you see how every beauty, “leads you, like breadcrumbs, to the throne of God.” This book helped me see God in everything.
Worship Night in the Vineyard:
I cannot tell you how awesome this was! And for the senior pastor at this church, how proud I am of our team. After leading worship in 3 services, Perry led an hour’s worth of singing and never missed a beat. Dave Quilla picked some amazing guys to lead us in prayer. And all the volunteers that made all of happen was amazing. And to top it off, Reustle Vineyard was stellar, as always and we can’t thank Stephen and Gloria Reustle enough for their hospitality. What a joy that was.
Two highlights for me: singing “Only a Holy God” and hearing each of the different men pray for specific areas. I was touched deeply by that time and am incredibly grateful.
From the Cheap Seats:
- If MLB comes back, it’s going to be a shorten season, (less than 50 games), and after the 2021 year, there’s going to be a strike. The labor deal is up at that point and all signs are pointing to a drawn out labor battle…I just want to see live baseball again.
- This Friday, the Roseburg Docs are playing at Legion in live action. I cannot wait!
- Church Services at Legion Field for June 28th! Get your game face on:)! We’re going to need volunteers for set-up/tear-down; security; you name it…if you can help, contact Dave Quilla at firstname.lastname@example.org, Perry Sorensen (email@example.com), or Christina Luther (firstname.lastname@example.org).
- Are any of you “lyric-challenged”? Well, I’m terrible at it. Just the other day, I was singing a song that I thought was “It takes two to make a tango ride” and my wife began to lose her mind…she said through tears, “the song goes ‘it takes two to make a thing go right’”. Wow, was I stunned…what’s a tango ride anyway??? ?♂️