Messages that Build a Christ Connection
We Have Seen Jesus
Imagine yourself one of Jesus’ original disciples. It is the weekend of the crucifixion. Your hopes and dreams of what you understood of the coming of the Messiah are destroyed. Jesus seemed to be the anointed one, the Christ. Now He’s dead and in a borrowed tomb. Could it get any worse.
Then on Sunday, you begin to hear rumors that Jesus is alive, resurrected. People begin reporting sightings and personal encounters.
This is almost more than you can comprehend. Any expectations you might have had about Jesus have now been entirely exceeded. Alive! Risen!
For a few weeks, we look at the stories of the encounters with Jesus after the resurrection and discover that our exceptions for our lives can be entirely exceeded if we are willing to encounter the risen Christ.
Come join us!
April 15 “On the Shore of the Sea of Galilee” Audio
April 22 “On the Mount of Olives”
He said, “I Am”
All of us have had to introduce ourselves to someone else. And sometimes, we’ve had to go beyond the “Hi, my name is…” introduction to something more in-depth. Most of us have also had to complete a resume, listing our educational, training, and employment history. Some have had to write a short bio of yourself, maybe for a newsletter or a web page. You write something that would be interesting to the reader without boring them. A few have gone to the ultimate: writing some kind of autobiography to tell the stories of your life.
During the season of Lent, we are looking at what Jesus said about Himself, 8 phrases of Jesus that changed the world. “He said, ‘I am…’” will transform your thinking about Jesus.
Come join us!
Feb 25 The Way, the Truth, and the Life Text
The Great Invitation: What happens when we take our call seriously
What is our calling as followers of Christ? To sit and watch the world go by on its way to ultimate judgment? To hope that someone comes along side us towards heaven?
No! We have a specific calling from Christ Himself, and it starts with an invitation. “Come and see the Messiah…” is what we should be saying to those around us who don’t know the Jesus we know.
We looked at two occasions in the New Testament that tell us who we are and what we are to do.
For a couple of weeks, we had guest preachers:
January 21 Rev. Jim Jennings: “Life with God – Working It Out” Audio
January 28 Kathy Kitchel: “We’re Just Like Jonah” Audio
A look at the five things that are essential as we begin a New Year.
The Lights of Christmas: Finding Hope, Peace, Joy, Love, and Christ
The concept of the Advent wreath originated among German Lutherans in the 16th Century. However, it was not until the 19th century that the modern Advent wreath took shape. Johann Hinrich Wichern, a Protestant pastor in Germany and a pioneer in urban mission work among the poor, is credited as the inventor of the modern Advent wreath. During Advent, the children at the mission school he founded in Hamburg would ask daily if Christmas had arrived. So in 1839, he built a large wooden ring (made out of an old cartwheel) with 24 small red and 4 large white candles. A small candle was lit successively every weekday and Saturday during Advent. On Sundays, a large white candle was lit. The custom gained ground among Protestant churches in Germany and evolved into the smaller wreath with the 5 candles known today. Roman Catholics in Germany began to adopt the custom in the 1920s, and in the 1930s it spread to North America.
During this Advent, we will look at the themes of the Advent Wreath – Hope, Peace, Joy, Love, and Christ – in the context of another Advent tradition: reading from Isaiah’s famous passage from chapter 9:2, 6-7, “The people who walk in darkness will see a great light… For a child is born to us…”
Come join us.
Generosity: Maturity of Faith
Generosity comes from God. We give thanks every day for His provisions, guidance, grace, and work through Jesus Christ. He has given us the sun, our world, the people in our lives, presence in the midst of blessing and trials, and hope for the resurrection to eternal life.
Part of the process of maturing in our faith is to become more like God in our generosity as well. We need to learn generosity in our time, talents, gifts and our service.
During November, we looked at generosity as part of our annual stewardship series.
November 5 What Does God Have to do with it? (Rev. George Cooper) Audio
November 11 Intentional Relationship with Jesus (Rev. George Cooper) Audio
Heroes: Amazing Stories of Faith
The Bible is full of heroes and their amazing stories of faith. They inspire and move us closer to God. They had their flaws, to be sure, but their faith has stood the test of time, and they continue to inspire young and old alike.
We looked at eight heroes – men and women, Old and New Testament – who inspire and challenge us to also be heroes of the faith.
September 10 David Text
October 15 John Text
What is Holy Communion?
Salvation. It’s a word we throw around a lot in the church. Preachers are always saying, “You need to get saved!” Saved from what? Things that go bump in the night? Bigfoot? The Boogie-Man? Why would someone need saved when most of the fears we have are imaginary. “Besides, doesn’t God love me, and won’t He take care of me, including letting me into heaven? Surely He wouldn’t send me to the other place. What kind of love is that?”
All of the world religions have a plan, a path they say leads to salvation, to heaven, or some blessed place or new existence. Even within Christianity, there are differences of opinion: Can I earn my way to heaven? Do I really need Jesus? Aren’t we all going to heaven anyway.
For three weeks, we looked at what the Bible has to say about salvation. We cleared up the confusion, found the Biblical truths, and became certain of “the Way.”
Rev. Stephen Luzader, Student Ministry Pastor of Christ UMC in Kettering, delivered a message based on 2 Samuel 21:15-19 entitled “They Do Get Woolly.”
August 6 “They Do Get Woolly” Audio
Back to the Basics
Gary talked about the basics of what the Gospel, the Good News.
July 30 “Back to Basics” Audio
“He’s Got Your Back”
Kathy Kitchel, our Youth Director, share a message from Romans 8:12-28 entitled “He’s Got Your Back.”
July 23 “He’s Got Your Back” Audio
Mission: Possible 2017
Each summer, we spend time talking about missions and helping us get involved – not just with the checkbook, but with our lives in service to Christ. This year, we heard from our Youth Mission Team, then from Keith Wasserman from Good Works in Athens, and then the reasons, the mandate, and the method for missions.
June 25 Youth Mission Team Audio Only
July 2 Keith Wasserman, Director of Good Works in Athens, OH Audio Only
It’s Somewhere: Looking for Answers
As we move through life, from place to place, we all have experiences that we would say are wonderful: learning to ride a bike, getting your driver’s license, graduating from high school, going to college, getting your first real job, getting married, having children, watching them do all those things you have done, then grandchildren. These are wonderful things, and we place the memories in boxes in the mind, like keepsakes, where we can pull them out whenever we want to smile, laugh, reflect, and feel better.
Unfortunately, we all know that as we travel through this life, we experience difficult or life altering times. Sometimes they are sudden; other times, they come upon us gradually. Sometimes they are completely devastating; others times, while difficult at the moment, life goes on.
And often, we ask ourselves, “Why do bad things happen?” And we start looking through the boxes of life where we have stored ideas, experiences, that we hope will help us through.
In our series “It’s Somewhere: Looking for Answers”, we explored the Bible to find the answers to some of the most difficult issues of life.
June 11 “How Can I Have Assurance?” Text
Journey to the Cross
But along the journey to the cross, He came across individuals and groups of people who needed Him. They were hurting, suffering, confused, angry… lost. And He stopped, saw them, and as Jesus always did, gave them new life.
During the season of Lent, we took that “Journey to the Cross,” watching from the sidelines what happened when people met the Savior, and discovered for ourselves how much Jesus can change our lives.
April 13 “A Bunch of Power Seekers Meet a Servant” Text
Acts of a Healthy Growing Church
We want more money, less debt. More muscle, less fat. More health, less aches. More security, less fear. More influence, less helplessness. More wisdom, less stupid. More love for God, for others. More faith, more prayer, more witness, more power.
Honestly, we want those same things for our church. More money, less debt. More muscle, less fat. More health, less aches. More security, less fear. More influence, less helplessness. More love for God, for others. More faith, more prayer, more witness, more power.
So, at the beginning of this new year, it is appropriate for us as a body of Christ to consider what it would take to be a new us this year. One with faith, one with prayer, one with witness, one with power. We want to be a healthy and growing congregation.
Our series “Acts of a Healthy Growing Church” looked at the Early Church through the book of Acts and see how they were healthy and growing.
It’s Your Time
How fitting is it that we begin the New Year in worship, renewing our covenant with God, and learning from Ecclesiastes that God has placed a time for everything.
And this year, it’s your time!