Some Sundays have a lot of thing thrown into them—intentionally or unintentionally. When we mapped out the Colossians series, today’s passage (Col. 3:18-4:1) gave us some room to promote our Family Life Ministry. We made a video, I worked with our FL director (the awesome Kay Wallace) to get the right points, I coordinated with Chris Cook (preaching at Campus), an insert was made, books were bought. On top of that, I was trying to communicate that baptisms were coming and we hired Jonathan Madrid, new worship pastor at the Oaks (starting in August). It was a party, but it was a lot.
Then, at the eleventh hour, we stopped the video. It was made, we had previewed it; but it wasn’t sitting right with some folks, so we pulled it. Kevin, Sr. Pastor who often holds ideas together, was on vacation (this was pre-planned, but still), and thus a lot of things that we wanted to communicated got dropped. On top of that, we threw a child dedication in to the second service. It was a lot.
Today we spoke of the home. That the truths of Jesus–the good news of the gospel–saturates the most intimate parts of our lives, and transforms relationships between husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, children–everything. . .The biggest struggle that came to mind when working through this sermon was removing the whitewash in my own heart–and all of our hearts–regarding how we already “do all this.” I find that, though we want to follow Jesus, we assume so many of the transformation in the Scriptures have already applied to us. “We’re good.” By God’s grace, Steve Elworth (buddy on staff) gave me a great resource, so I shared how the gospel is changing entire villages with these truths (go here for the source–don’t mind the poor editing). It amazes me whenever Jesus truly breaks into things. And that’s what I pray for our church.
I desire to see Jesus truly change us. But we need to remember that our hearts are broken and need changing (Jer. 17:9). We need to remember that we reject God (Rom. 3:11). We need to remember that grace abounds and Jesus heals. When Jesus enters the home amazing things happen. Hearts gripped by grace are worth boasting about, and only Jesus can do it.
As much as I loved the passage, this morning was a plea. A plea to live as Jesus designed us. A plea to let even our homes be covered with grace. I believe Jesus can change, is changing, and will change us. All by his grace. The moment I stop believing that I will stop being the pastor at the Oaks.
Two more weeks to go in the series. I can’t wait. Join us!