Oct 21, 2018
A Psalm for Life

 A Psalm for Life                                                      Psalm 23

We end this sermon series with the most popular Psalm.  Psalm 23 is even known in secular cultures.
 
There is probably no other Psalm as well-loved and oft quoted as Psalm 23.  It is quoted in times of trouble, in times of anxiety, at funerals, and in times of heartache.
 
Psalm 23 is traditionally attributed to David, a shepherd by trade and king by selection.
 
Psalm 23 certainly demonstrates confidence in God by the psalmist and instills confidence in the reader. [caption id="attachment_11833" align="alignright" width="258"] The Game of Life Life does not always turn out like we expect or wanted.[/caption]
 
We are not sure what point in David's mortal life he penned these immortal words.  The sermon looks at how the Psalm speaks to different phases in David's life, so we will experience the psalm speaking to us at the different phases of our lives.
 
Reflect On:
 
1) If a spontaneous celebration erupted right now, what would you celebrate?
 
2)  Which part(s) of Psalm 23 speak directly to your life today?
 
Memory Verse:
Choose your favorite verse or verses from Psalm 23 and memorize them.  Or memorize the whole Psalm.
 

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  • Oct 21, 2018A Psalm for Life
    Oct 21, 2018
    A Psalm for Life

     A Psalm for Life                                                      Psalm 23

    We end this sermon series with the most popular Psalm.  Psalm 23 is even known in secular cultures.
     
    There is probably no other Psalm as well-loved and oft quoted as Psalm 23.  It is quoted in times of trouble, in times of anxiety, at funerals, and in times of heartache.
     
    Psalm 23 is traditionally attributed to David, a shepherd by trade and king by selection.
     
    Psalm 23 certainly demonstrates confidence in God by the psalmist and instills confidence in the reader. [caption id="attachment_11833" align="alignright" width="258"] The Game of Life Life does not always turn out like we expect or wanted.[/caption]
     
    We are not sure what point in David's mortal life he penned these immortal words.  The sermon looks at how the Psalm speaks to different phases in David's life, so we will experience the psalm speaking to us at the different phases of our lives.
     
    Reflect On:
     
    1) If a spontaneous celebration erupted right now, what would you celebrate?
     
    2)  Which part(s) of Psalm 23 speak directly to your life today?
     
    Memory Verse:
    Choose your favorite verse or verses from Psalm 23 and memorize them.  Or memorize the whole Psalm.
     

    If you would like to hear more sermons, click here.

  • Oct 14, 2018Trust
    Oct 14, 2018
    Trust

    Trust                                                                   Psalm 55:1-8, 22-23

    Trust in God
    First I ask you to take a moment to read and reflect on the entire psalm.
    To me, it sounds like life is becoming overwhelming. David was dealing with mounting unhappiness in the northern part of the kingdom. His two sons were conspiring against him. Enemies were plotting against him, enemies outside the border. Enemies inside the border. Enemies in the palace. Enemies in his own family.
     
    I imagine David taking a walk out of the palace roof, just for a moment of peace. There is a dove sitting on the ledge. David just stands there, gazing at the dove. The dove flaps it wings and flies away free. David says to himself, "I wish I had wings like a dove. I'd fly away free." I think most of us can relate to David's desire.
     
    But David is not a dove! He cannot fly away. Yet, he does get to a place of trusting God, "But me, I trust God." David is able to go from wanting to flee, to being free in God.
     
    Reflect On:
    1)  In your prayer life, have you ever withheld something from God?
    2) What do you still need to let God have so you can have true freedom?
     
    Memory Verse:  Psalm 55:22
    "Cast your burden on the Lord -
    He will support you!
    God will never let the righteous be shaken!"
     

    David gives an honest heartfelt prayer - holding nothing back, and through that prayer finds freedom through trusting God.

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  • Oct 7, 2018Permission
    Oct 7, 2018
    Permission

    Permission                                                               Psalm 15:1-5

     A large group gathers outside the doors of the temple anticipating entrance.  The priest opens the doors and asks, "Who may worship in God's sanctuary? Who may enter God's presence?" The people answer (see verses 2-5).

    Those who lead blameless lives and do what is right, speaking the truth from sincere hearts. 3 Those who refuse to gossip or harm their neighbors or speak evil of their friends. 4 Those who despise flagrant sinners, and honor the faithful followers of the Lord, and keep their promises even when it hurts. 5 Those who lend money without charging interest, and who cannot be bribed to lie about the innocent.

     I imagine as the as the answer progresses, the crowd gets thinner and thinner.  After all, do you meet all the qualifications in verses 2-5?  No wonder some people think they are not good enough to attend church.
     
    These standards were not designed to be a barrier or obstacle to worship.  They illuminate our need for worship, to come into God's presence with all our sins, mistakes, faults, and find forgiveness.
     
    These words clarify the need for us to be in God's presence.  It is a Psalm of permission - none of us are good enough to be here - God makes us good enough.  We have permission to be here because God gives us permission.
     
    Reflect on:
    1) How does worship make a difference in what you do during the week? 2) How does what you did during the week make a difference in worship?
    Memory Verse:
    You will show me the way of life,
    granting me the joy or your presence
    and the pleasure of living with you forever
     

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  • Sep 30, 2018Idolatry
    Sep 30, 2018
    Idolatry

    Idolatry                                                      Psalm 115:1-11

     
    Merriam-Webster defines idolatry as:

    1: the worship of a physical object as a god

    2: immoderate attachment or devotion to something
     

    In Psalm 115 the Lord wants us to trust in him- not idols that others worship.

     
    1 Not to us, Lord, not to us but to your name be the glory because of your love and faithfulness.
    Nothing new here: the Israelites are supposed to remain faithful to God. This time, though, we get some direct comparisons between their God and the others'.

    2 Why do the nations say, “Where is their God?”

    3 Our God is in heaven; he does whatever pleases him.  4 But their idols are silver and gold, made by human hands.

    5 They have mouths, but cannot speak, eyes, but cannot see. 6 They have ears, but cannot hear,

    noses, but cannot smell. 7 They have hands, but cannot feel, feet, but cannot walk, nor can they utter a sound with their throats.

    8 Those who make them will be like them, and so will all who trust in them. Check out how the writer talks about the idols. They can't even do what humans can—walk, talk, smell, see, hear—let alone do what gods can. 9 All you Israelites, trust in the Lord—he is their help and shield.

    10 House of Aaron, trust in the Lord—he is their help and shield.

    11 You who fear him, trust in the Lord—he is their help and shield.
     
    Everyone around the Israelites has idols that they say are their gods, and the Israelites have nothing. Nothing physical, that is. We do have God's power to lean on in times of need.  he is always with us. 

     

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  • Sep 16, 2018Strength, Hope, Waiting
    Sep 16, 2018
    Strength, Hope, Waiting

    Strength                                                         Psalm 27:1-2, 7-8, 13-14

    Memory verse: Psalm 27:14
    Hope in the Lord!
    Be strong! Let your heart take courage!
    Hope in the Lord!
     
    Do any of you enjoy waiting? I don't! If there are two people in line at the grocery store or one car in line at the ATM, I grimace, gripe, and get impatient.
     
    How do you react when someone does not immediately reply to your text?
     
    In this world of instant everything, we have lost the art of waiting.
     
    There was a time when people waited until they were married to enjoy the benefits of being married. People used to wait until they had saved the money for a purchase. Remember when we had to wait for Black Friday to get the Black Friday deals? Now, it all starts on Thanksgiving - if not sooner.
     
    We have lost the art of waiting. This bleeds over in our life of faith. We have lost the art of waiting on God, especially in time of difficulty and opposition. The psalmist finds assurance and security by simply being in God's presence and waiting on God
     
    In verse 14 (sometimes translated "hope" and sometimes translated "wait"), the psalmist comes to a point of purposeful waiting.

     

    Find assurance and security from simply waiting on God.

     

    Psalm 27:1

    The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
     

     

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  • Sep 9, 2018Orientation
    Sep 9, 2018
    Orientation

    Orientation                                                               Psalm 8

    Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name through the earth!

    You made your glory higher than heaven!

     
    A person is walking in the desert at night. She pauses, looks up at the sky and is in awe of the majestic, star-filled sky. Stars too numerous to count. She think about the vastness of the universe and thinks,

    "What am I that God would make a little speck like me?" There is a sense of insignificance. Yet she know that God has created her "only slightly less than divine, crowning (her) with glory and grandeur." Ps. 8:5

    There is an overwhelming sense of significance.
     
    Sometimes the mess we make in life is because we dwell in a sense of insignificance. Yet God has given us an exalted position. Not a position to exploit, but a position that gives each and every one of us our proper orientation. Our proper orientation to God, to the world, to each other and to ourselves.
     
    A proper oriented life is a life oriented to God, lived in significance and giving God the glory in everything.
     

    Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name through the earth!

     

    Reflect on:

    1) Is there a time in your life when you have been or acted less than the "glorious" person God created?
    2) Is there a time you have attempted to be more than God's creation?  That is, you have acted like God?
    3) How can you live the glorious affirmation and boundaries of humankind in Psalm 8?
     

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