Christian

Cornerstone- Lifestyle

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Family Devotional Adults 4-9-17

Family Devotional Kids 4-9-17


Adult & Teen Discussion Guide

1. Primary Statement

A life built on the Cornerstone of Christ looks different than those built on the world’s standards. Every one of us has a responsibility to live a visibly-changed life, and the empowerment of God to accomplish it.

2.Bible Verse & Talking Point

You have a responsibility to live differently.

Matthew 5:16 (ESV) 

“In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.

1 Corinthians 9:25-27 (ESV)

“Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air. But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.”

Q. In which area in life is it the hardest to live differently than the world? 

 Q. What happens to our message when we preach one thing, but live another?

3. Application

The Holy Spirit gives you the power to say “no” to sin and “yes” to right-living.

Romans 8:11-13 (NLT) 

The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as God raised Christ Jesus from the dead, he will give life to your mortal bodies by this same Spirit living within you.Therefore, dear brothers and sisters, you have no obligation to do what your sinful nature urges you to do. For if you live by its dictates, you will die. But if through the power of the Spirit you put to death the deeds of your sinful nature, you will live.”

4. Wrap up Discussion

Q. What’s something you know you should do that seems impossible?

On your own, it’s impossible to choose a God-honoring life, but with the Holy Spirit’s help, you have more than enough strength to reject sin and practice what you preach.

5. Prayer Focus

Take a few minutes as a family and ask God to help you choose the right things through His power in you.


Family with Small Children Discussion Guide

1. Activity

Find something around the house that is too heavy for your child to lift on their own, but not too heavy for you. Ask them to try lifting it. After establishing that it’s impossible (or really difficult, if you underestimated their strength), ask them to lift it again, but this time, help them do it.

2. Bible Verse

Romans 8:11-12 (NLT)

“The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as God raised Christ Jesus from the dead, he will give life to your mortal bodies by this same Spirit living within you.Therefore, dear brothers and sisters, you have no obligation (parents, define “obligation”) to do what your sinful nature urges you to do.”

3. Application & Talking Point

Q. Do you ever find yourself in a spot where you know the right thing to do, but you feel like you just can’t? (parents, you may need to suggest a few examples)

Sometimes it feels like it’s impossible to make the right choice – and by yourself, it is; just like picking up something really heavy. But when God lives inside of you, He helps you. No matter what the situation is, you can do the right thing with God’s help!

4. Wrap up Discussion

Q. What’s something that you know you should do, but it seems too hard? You can do it with God’s help!

5. Prayer Focus

Take a few minutes as a family and ask God to help you choose the right things through His power in you.

Family Devotional 4-9-17 pdf download

Martyrs

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martyrs

I felt compelled to take a break from the Panama blog posts and write two blogs about two things that have been in the media over the past few days.  The deaths of 21 Egyptian Christians at the hands of ISIS terrorists and the recent interview of Rob Bell by Oprah Winfrey.

While I won’t deal with these in the same blog post, they are absolutely both signs of the times in which we live and I believe that each of them could indeed be indicators of the approaching return of Jesus!  Notice with me the following verses from the book of Revelation:

When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the witness they had borne. They cried out with a loud voice, “O Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long before you will judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?” Then they were each given a white robe and told to rest a little longer, until the number of their fellow servants and their brothers should be complete, who were to be killed as they themselves had been.” (Revelation 6:9–11, ESV)

Are these verses speaking specifically about these deaths?  I simply do not know.  What I do know is that we now live in a time where Christians are dying for their faith and the whole world is watching and that has never happened before.  Certainly Christians have died for their faith, but not in a manner where the whole world was watching and not at the hands of a violent, religious group such as ISIS.

I simply want to bring two things to your mind in this blog post.  First, I want to remind you of the words of Jesus when he said…

And when you hear of wars and tumults, do not be terrified, for these things must first take place, but the end will not be at once.”” (Luke 21:9, ESV)

Regardless of what you hear on the news or read on the internet or in print, God is still in control!!  These could very well be the signs of the soon return of our Lord!  We could be right at the moment that Jesus spoke of when he said…

Now when these things begin to take place, straighten up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”” (Luke 21:28, ESV)

Second, I want to ask you to join me in a cause.  I realize that these next few statements might seem in conflict with things that you have heard me say from the pulpit about how we are to love our enemies, but they are not.  I believe that the greatest demonstration of Christ’s love is in a person’s willingness to suffer or even die for someone who doesn’t deserve that love.  However, nowhere do the scriptures instruct you and I, not to use every means within our reach to protect our families and others who might be defenseless against someone trying to hurt them.

Therefore, I would ask you to join me in taking every opportunity to avail yourselves upon our political leaders to intervene via the strongest measures possible to stop anyone who would again seek to take Christian lives.  Regardless of the current opinions of those in leadership in our nation, we have for our nation’s entire existence been considered a Christian nation by the rest of the world and if we don’t take action who will?  When you write and speak, do so with compassion and reason.  We must be seen as sober and reasonable people who are asking for a reasonable response to an absolute atrocity.

I will use the full force of any influence I have to this end and I pray that you will join me.

Sober blessings.

Pastor Roy

Transformers

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transformers

For most young people today when you mention transformers they instantly think of cars and trucks that change into huge robots. But have you ever considered that we as Christians are intended by our Father to be transformers? The imagined world of alien robots that hide among us as ordinary automobiles and then suddenly change into huge, crusading defenders of good…  really isn’t a bad definition of who we are supposed to be.

Christ’s atoning death that we celebrate next week was not only intended to secure our righteousness and thereby reunite us eternally with God, but it was also intended to be the power by which we are transformed here and now into huge, crusading defenders of good! Through Christ’s work which is now within us we should be undergoing a daily transformation that reveals the person of Christ through and in us.

We read in John 7:38 “Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’ ” ESV

Christ should be flowing out of us into the lives of all those around us. This is only possible as we are transformed into his image and likeness and ultimately that should be the inescapable conclusion of a life lived with Jesus in it.

Easter is about transformation. Without transformation you really haven’t gotten the meaning of Easter.

Be transformed!

Blessings