Sunday Debrief: Where’s Your Heart? (2/16/14)

If you were at our 10:45 service, you know that JP and Jennifer Harris are now at the top of the “People I Love and Owe a Few Lunches to” list. If you weren’t, then you’ll just have to wonder why.

On to Sunday!

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth,” says our Savior. We say, “Yeah, but you don’t know what it’s like to own an iPad, iMac, iPhone, MacBook, or car.” You’re right. Jesus didn’t own a car (at least not that I can see from the four Gospels). Jesus also didn’t own a closet. So what would he know about stuff?

“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.” Hebrews 4:15

So do we have a high priest who knows what it is like to be tempted with things? To have a place to lay his head? Tempted to find value in possessions rather than the father? Absolutely. And do you know what he says? Stuff rusts and disappears. . .

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(From my science experiment Sunday morning—it isn’t sweet tea. It’s rust.)

Jesus has much to say about where our hearts are. . .

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Sunday Debrief: A New Kind of Normal (2/9/14)

This past Sunday we kicked off our Transformation 2014 campaign. This isn’t your mama’s stewardship campaign. This is an all-out, months-in-the-making, idol-crushing look at how we handle our finances in light of Jesus and all he has done for us (not the “please give us your money so we can build a new building” campaign). 

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This campaign idea actually started years ago in the minds and hearts of many in our church (though we’ve been working diligently the past eleven months in this unique expression). For years The Chapel has had folks who counsel people financially, and time and time again they’ve encountered people of all ages and financial situations who are in terrible—even idolatrous—financial situations. 

My brothers, this should not be. 

Rather than just preach at people and tell them to get their house in order, we wanted to take it a step further. We are also offering a tool to help our families consider their finances. That tool is Financial Peace University. So while we preach on Sundays around the issues of the heart regarding finance, our whole church is going through FPU at the same time (or as many as possible—currently around 600). . .

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Thoughts From My Desk: Being in a Local Church

Welcome to a new series that may well last one post. Given that there is no rhyme or reason to when I post or why I post, I figured that would be a fair assessment.

Sunday afternoons I often am in my office. I may go to lunch with the family, I may run home, I may read, but you can often find me sitting in the office after lunch thinking about what has been and preparing for something that evening. At times I have thoughts, other times I don’t. Thus, the new series that may last one post.

This week I’m thinking about being in a local church. . .

(I put this because I feel this incredible pressure to have some image or video on my posts).

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Sunday Debrief: Courageous Leadership (2/2/14)

I’m grateful for Sundays like this past one. Where I feel like the sermon was a swing and a miss and somehow, by the grace of God, the Lord ministers to people through it and they let me know. (Tim Keller has mentioned that you need 200 sermons under your belt before you are a competent preacher, so check back with me in 2016 or 2017.) (Also, for all of the “Hans, you did fine” commenters [which don’t really exist], I’m really not looking for sympathy—promise).

Courageous Leadership. For you guys out there, here’s your clip. . .

For you Matt Damon fans, here’s your clip. . .

For everyone else. . .

Granted, those last two aren’t really about courageous leadership, but more just courage. Still, you get the idea. We pray and hope for a church of people courageous enough to lead out in this world for the name and fame of Jesus.

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Sunday Debrief: Pervasive Grace (1/12/14)

Life ran away from me over the past month. I’ve failed to give an update on our Sundays for over a month!

In talking with a friend, I mentioned that this Sunday people at the second service will likely remember three things: (1) that I said “have a drink”; (2) that I said “dork”; and (2) that I am a selfish and meticulous person. I told him that that was not my goal in the least. What I hoped people heard was that God’s grace is relentless, and that we all need it.*

Yet somehow, we miss it more often than we find it. Like we don’t even know the song that is sung to us morning by morning.

 

(For more info on this experiment, read here.)

The grace of God is the thing we have to offer people in this world. It’s the most unique thing about our faith. It changes entire villages. It restores broken souls and resurrects dead lives. Nothing is more important. Nothing is more satisfying. And it comes to us through what Christ did on the cross. 

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Sunday Debrief: Advent Confidence (12/8/13)

Come Thou Long Expected Jesus. . . 

We spent this morning beginning our Advent series. (Now, officially, Advent began on December 1 and will continue until Christmas Eve, but we pick and choose when we use the Christian calendar [the ambiguity of whether or not I meant that positively or negatively is on purpose.])

So for this entire series we will look at both the first and second coming(s) of Jesus and how that transforms our ordinary life into something for his purposes. 

This morning we spoke of confidence. . .

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