Sunday, December 21, 2014

Weekend Recap - Christmas Defined

My 12/21/14AM sermon was titled Christmas Defined from John 3:16.  This sermon is now online.  The definition we were driven to was: Christmas is God's love coming to us through His Son calling us away from ourselves to real life.  I hope it blesses you this holiday week.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Weekend Recap - Gospel Propulsion

My 12/14/14AM sermon, Gospel Propulsion from Romans 15:14-24 is now online.  In this sermon, I try to unpack God's heart for His people, which emerges as grace moves in to propel us to action, as we serve the world and engage the unreached in our world.  I mentioned that if someone wants more info on the unreached, they should check out IMB Global Research.  I hope this sermon helps you spread the good news of great joy for all peoples.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

All Hands On Deck

I'm posting today over on our Church's Missions Blog:


All hands on deck seems to be a cry used in times when all kinds of help is needed to accomplish something.  In our case, we have a value called Wholly Engaged, which we feel helps encapsulate our idea that all hands are needed for the work of global missions.  We are on a boat that is riding a tidal wave of God's glory to the ends of the earth.  And, we need all hands on deck to contribute to this awesome campaign.  Where is your place?  What work could you do?  How glorious would your work help God's great cause?  Today, answer the call for all hands on deck as we display God's glory throughout the world.

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Weekend Recap - Gospel Unity

My 12/7/14AM sermon, Gospel Unity from Romans 15:1-13 is now online.  In this sermon, I try to unpack the foundation for unity that's given in this passage, specifically honing in on not seeking to please ourselves but submitting to Jesus' Lordship.  My hope is that through this sermon, you'd be drawn away from yourself to radiate God's glory with others.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Weekend Recap - Gospel Love

My 11/30/14AM sermon, Gospel Love from Romans 14:13-23, is now online.  The sermon sought to unpack the inward, upward, and outward calls of love to others.  We must consider our conscience, esteem God's kingdom and live out our faith for love to have the grace shaped character it's meant to have.  I hope this sermon helps nurture that in you.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Weekend Recap - Gospel Welcome

My 11/23/14AM sermon, Gospel Welcome, from Romans 14:1-12 is now online.  The sermon got into the big section of Romans 14-15 and how people relate in the church.  The big theme of this passage is that because God's welcomed us, we ought to welcome others.  Specifically, because of who God is, Jesus being Lord and God being the final judge, we should stop quarreling over secondary matters.  I hope this sermon is an encouragement to you.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Weekend Recap - Loving Our Neighbor

My sermon from 11/16/14AM entitled Loving Our Neighbor from Romans 13:8-14 is now online.  Among other things, this sermon helped show some reasons why we should love our neighbor, especially as a people who are shaped by grace.  My hope is that this sermon leads to persistent and diligent application from all who hear.  I hope it encourages you, too.

Sunday, November 09, 2014

Weekend Recap - Loving The State

My 11/9/14 sermon, Loving the State from Romans 13:1-7, is now online.  This sermon, while very convicting, did attempt to chart a positive course on how Christians in this world relate to their government.  God has called on us to submit.  He's called us to this because He's the One who gives government its authority, He's the One who's given government its purpose and He's the One calling citizens to live in an honorable way in society.  I hope this sermon helps you make progress as you live your faith in this world.

Thursday, November 06, 2014

Risk Is Right.

I'm posting over on our Church's Mission Blog today...


From John Piper's book Don't Waste Your Life (pp.89-90):

Risk is right. And the reason is not because God promises success to all our ventures in his cause. There is no promise that every effort for the cause of God will succeed, at least not in the short run. John the Baptist risked calling King Herod an adulterer when he divorced his own wife in order to take his brother’s wife. For this John got his head chopped off. And he had done right to risk his life for the cause of God and truth. Jesus had no criticism for him, only the highest praise (Matthew 11:11).

Paul risked going up to Jerusalem to complete his ministry to the poor. He was beaten and thrown in prison for two years and then shipped off to Rome and executed there two years later. And he did right to risk his life for the cause of Christ. How many graves are there in Africa and Asia because thousands of young missionaries were freed by the power of the Holy Spirit from the enchantment of security and then risked their lives to make much of Christ among the unreached peoples of the world!

And now what about you? Are you caught in the enchantment of security, paralyzed from taking any risks for the cause of God? Or have you been freed by the power of the Holy Spirit from the mirage of Egyptian safety and comfort? Do you men ever say with Joab, “For the sake of the name, I’ll try it! And may the Lord do what seems good to him”? Do you women ever say with Esther, “For the sake of Christ, I’ll try it! And if I perish, I perish”?

Today, maybe God is calling you deeper.  Christ is that compelling.  He's calling us to be strategically reckless for Him.  Let's go to Him, outside the camp and find Him to be all satisfy.

Monday, November 03, 2014

Weekend Recap - Genuine Love

My 11/2/14AM sermon, Genuine Love from Romans 12:9-21, is now online.  Many of us think that we're much more loving that we actually are.  And the Bible is like a mirror that we hold up to show us our true selves.  In this passage, we see that genuine love is on the move, acting in ways that are challenging for many of us.  We are demonstrating love to believers.  This is the call at the first part of our passage and it's difficult. But, towards the end of the passage, we're called to love our enemies, which is impossible for us apart from the mobilizing grace of God.  So, I hope this sermon is helpful as you seek to love the way God's called you to love.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Shaped by Grace

My 10/26/14AM sermon, Shaped by Grace from Romans 12:1-8 is now online.  This sermon honed in on how God's grace is on the move to shape our relationships with God, ourselves and one another.  I personally felt it exposed some areas of my life that had grown stale or cold and needed reshaped by grace.  So, I'm hoping God was at work through His Word to give you encouragement through this.  Have a terrific week.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Weekend Recap - Glory of Overflowing Grace

My 10/19/14AM sermon, Glory of Overflowing Grace from Romans 11:33-36, is now online.  In this sermon, on one level I try to showcase God who is rich in mercy and how that mercy demonstrates that He is the most glorious being in the world.  On another level, I'm engaging my hearers to reckon with the God of the Bible who is the most unique person of all.  He's is categories all to Himself and His actions call for all that we are.  All things are to the glory of God.  I hope this sermon helps you awe God in deeper ways and glorify Him as the supreme one in your life.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Forty

I have a big birthday today.  40.

One thought I had was all that Ecclesiastes has to say about youth, age and days:

I only have a few days from God to make the most of life on this earth. (Ecclesiastes 6:12)
All the days God gives me are to be used to live a full life. (Ecclesiastes 6:3)
I should pursue joy with my life. (Ecclesiastes 8:15)
I should try to do good all the days God gives me on this earth. (Ecclesiastes 2:3)
I should be careful with what I give my heart to in the days of my youth. (Ecclesiastes 11:9)

I've been, by God's grace, able to live a full life so far.  I'm blessed beyond anything I deserve with a faithful wife, fun children, a job full of joy, a work that is beyond this world and a life that is rich.


I also think about the mortality of days.  I asked my Mom and others some facts about my dad and grandfathers when they were 40 and the churches they were pastoring at the time.  At age 40...

My dad was pastoring Canaan Baptist Church in St. Louis, MO and I was a sophomore in high school.
My Gpa Auxier was pastoring in Sterling, IL and would soon move to Mt. Vernon to pastor a church he would retire from (and my dad was either graduating or about to graduate high school).
My Gpa Lemay was enjoyed a fruitful ministry at Park Avenue Baptist in Mt. Vernon (and my Mom was a sophomore in high school).

Why these facts?  Because these men are gone.  My dad would pass away at 48 and both of my grandfathers have passed away in recent years.  To know the lives they lived makes my desire to make every day count all the more pressing.


So, thanks for indulging my meditations on this birthday.  Would you mind praying for me, that God's grace would flow in the next chapters as free and rich as it has in these first few?  Ask God to make my life useful for His purposes and for the good of others.  Thanks.




Monday, October 13, 2014

Weekend Recap - Matt Perman's Visit

We enjoyed a great weekend at Crestview yesterday (10/12/14).  Matt Perman of What's Best Next was at church serving our people.  During Sunday School, Matt visited with the class we have working through his book, fielding some questions and offering up solid answers.  The class seemed energized through the content we were engaging.

Matt preached during the AM service from Ephesians 6:5-9 on a Christian View of Work.  This sermon really challenged us with a biblical vision of work that helps us do all that we do for the glory of God and the good of others.

Later in the day, Matt spoke at our annual Men and Boys Chili Supper.  He gave an apologetic for Christianity through the lens of time management in what I labeled a TED(like) Talk.

Like I said, many enjoyed this full day with Matt.  I was grateful to have some unhurried time of fellowship with Matt and left encouraged and challenged to work more fully for the good of others.  It was a great weekend.  Hope you enjoy the audio and take advantage of the practical information on Matt's site, What's Best Next.

Monday, October 06, 2014

Weekend Recap - Strong In Grace

My 10/5/14AM sermon, Strong In Grace from Romans 11:11-32, is now online.  This sermon teased out how God strengthens His church by grace.  Specifically, that middle section highlighted how God calls us to humility as a response to His kindness.  It's difficult to talk about humility because we often don't prize this as a virtue, but God has a different way of doing things than we might envision.  I tweeted out this AM: "How are you demonstrating humility in what you text, post, and say today? (hint: try not using ALL CAPS as a start)".   If you don't know using all caps online is like screaming.    At any rate, it's easy for me to be prideful in speaking of the pride in others, but often more difficult to recognize the pride in my own heart.  Pray for me in this regard that I would model humility in my words and  actions.  Listen to this sermon and see if it encourages you.  Blessings.