Archive for the 'Christianity' category

12 Baskets Full

 | September 15, 2009 9:24 PM

August 2, 2009
Speaker: Pastor Gregory Bishop
Series: Lead/Feed/Intercede
Passages: Mark 6:30-44

5 Loaves and 2 fish_0905 on Flickr

(Photo: 5 Loaves and 2 fish_0905 by hoyasmeg)

Pastor Gregory Bishop is from León de Judá in Boston and a graduate of Gordon-Conwell.  We actually are good friends with a friend of his, only two degrees of separation.  He preached about the famous Jesus feeds the five thousand passage and you can hear the sermon here.

The disciples had gone out on a mission trip, driving out demons and healing the sick.  Now after giving and ministering they might be feeling depleted.  They want to go back to their mentor, Jesus, to process what they experienced.

Now a bombshell has dropped.  John the Baptist has been executed.

Jesus saw the crowd that had followed him and the disciples and he had compassion on them.  John the Baptist is gone.  The people are hungry.  Jesus asks the disciples to feed them.

The disciples calculate how much it would cost and say it’ll take eight months of wages to pay them.  The disciples are focusing on what they don’t have.  Jesus tells them to find what they do have, lift it up to the Lord and see what happens.  The disciples are way out of their comfort zone.

For the Jews listening to this story they would have a flashback to the manna in the desert.  Numbers 11:4-23.  “Is the LORD’s arm too short?  You will now see whether or not what I say will come true for you.”

Sheep-life on Flickr“Then Jesus directed them to have all the people sit down in groups on the green grass.” Mark 6:39

“He makes me lie down in green pastures” Psalm 23:2a

In college Pastor Gregory Bishop worked as a security guard.  He wanted to improve his high school Spanish so he would talk to the Latino workers.  One day he noticed one person, Diego, always ate alone.  He looked like the type of guy who was up to no good but he decided to try to meet him.

One lunch time he went up to Diego and asked him if he could sit with him.  Diego asked him if he was a Christian and asked if he could go to his church.  Gregory ended up taking Diego to a Hispanic church.  It turned out Diego was indeed up to no good and was leading a cocaine cartel.  But in prison he became Christian!

Fed to feed.

At the end the disciples picked up all the leftovers.  If this was a typical church gathering much of the food would have been thrown away.  What did the disciples do with it?  They picked up twelve baskets, one for each disciple.

We will shepherd.

Reign in Us – Starfield

Stand – Hillsong

You’ll Come – Hillsong


Your Identity In Christ

 | September 12, 2009 9:42 PM

Your Identity In Christ » Blog » Greg Boyd (Christus Victor Ministries) This is from Pastor Greg Boyd’s blog. I added in links to all the Scripture references.

Your Identity In Christ

In response to one of my messages I told some folks I’d post a sampling I have of what the Bible says about our identity in Christ, so here it is. I encourage you to take each truth on this list and not only SAY it throughout the day, but SEE it and HEAR it and LIVE IN it.  Be transformed by the renewing of your mind (Rom. 12:2).

In Christ you are …

  • God’s beloved child (Jn 1:12; Eph 1:5)
  • Christ’s dear friend (Jn 15:5)
  • Declared perfectly righteous (“justified”) (Rom 5:1)
  • Free from condemnation (Rom 8:1; Col 2:14-16)
  • United with Christ, “one spirit” with Christ (I Cor 6:17; Eph 5:31)
  • A member of Christ’s body (I Cor 6:15, 12:27)
  • The Temple of God (I Cor 6:19)
  • Filled with the “fullness of God” (Eph 3:19)
  • A “holy one” [saint] (Eph 1:1)
  • Blessed with every spiritual blessing (Eph 1:3)
  • Holy and blameless (Eph 1:4)
  • Bought with an infinite price and forgiven (I Cor 6: 20; Eph 1:7; Col 1:14)
  • Bathed with wisdom and understanding (Eph 1:8)
  • The recipient of an eternal, infinitely rich, inheritance (Eph 1:11, 18)
  • Possessed with the mind of Christ (I Cor 2:16)
  • Inseparable from God’s love (Rom 8:35-39)
  • One who will NEVER be abandoned (Mt 28:20)
  • The beautiful bride of Christ who “ravishes” the heart of God (Song of Songs, 4:1ff; 6:4ff).
  • One over whom the Lord rejoices, sings and claps his hands (Zeph 3:17)
  • One for whom the Lord throws a party (Zeph 3:17; Lk 15:7-10)
  • A recipient of God’s own peace (Jn 14:27)
  • Filled with the peace and joy of God (Rom 14:17)
  • One in whom Christ’s joy is fulfilled (Jn 15:11)
  • Given direct access to the Father by the Holy Spirit (Eph 2:18)
  • Seated with Christ in heavenly realms (Eph 2:6)
  • Seated “far above all rule and authority and power and dominion” with Christ (Eph 1:21).
  • Hid in Christ in heavenly realms (Col 3:1-5)
  • Crucified, Buried and Raised with Christ (Rom 6:1-11)
  • Made perfect forever (Heb 10:14)
  • Made complete in Christ (Col 2:10)
  • Indwelled by a fearless Spirit (2 Tim 1:7)
  • One of God’s precious works of art (Eph 2:10)
  • Indwelt by a spirit of power, love and stability (2 Tim 1:7)
  • A citizen of heaven (Phil 3:20)
  • Predestined to look like Jesus and see him in his glory (Rom 8:29; I Jn 3:1-5)
  • One in whom God is working to bring good out of evil (Rom 8:28)
  • Salt of the earth (Mt 5:13)
  • A branch chosen to bear fruit (Jn 15:16)
  • A co-worker with God (I Cor 3:9)
  • An ambassador of Christ and minister of reconciliation (2 Cor 5:17-20)
  • A priest of the most high God (I Pet 2:5-9)
  • More than a conqueror in all things (Rom 8:37)
  • One who knows Satan is a disarmed laughing stock (Col 2:14-15).
  • One who knows the truth and is set free (Jn 8:32).
  • One who can do all things in Christ (Phil 4:13)

I encourage you to reprogram your mind meditating on these truths.  Further help on being transformed by the mind can be found in Seeing Is Believing and (with Al Larsen) Escaping the Matrix.

Be Blessed !

Maybe I should try memorizing some of these verses.  Want to join me in memorizing them?


Not For Sale Sermon – Serving Others

 | September 8, 2009 4:00 AM

Not For SaleDavid Batsone of Not For Sale gave a sermon on June 14, 2009.  I found it to be one of the more inspiring sermons I have heard.  I want to be faithful and take small steps as David encouraged us to do and see where God leads.  Following are my notes from the sermon.

Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.
1 Peter 4:10

We don’t have to obsess about “What will we do with our lives?”  God is always bringing us opportunities.  It’s just about how we respond.  God honors small steps.

14 But you, O God, do see trouble and grief;
       you consider it to take it in hand.
       The victim commits himself to you;
       you are the helper of the fatherless.

15 Break the arm of the wicked and evil man;
       call him to account for his wickedness
       that would not be found out.

16 The LORD is King for ever and ever;
       the nations will perish from his land.

17 You hear, O LORD, the desire of the afflicted;
       you encourage them, and you listen to their cry,

18 defending the fatherless and the oppressed,
       in order that man, who is of the earth, may terrify no more.

Psalm 10

We help those who don’t have access to justice.

Vocation – where does our passions and skills meet the needs of the world?  Jesus said “restore sight to the blind” because we lost sight of who we are.

Prayer is key to our life.  Reading Scripture to prepare ourselves.

“But there are so many choices.”  God is not bringing you those choices.  God already has a plan.

Veronica’s House in Peru.  Victoria came to Not For Sale asking for help but they didn’t have a shelter ready yet and asked her to check in with them every two days.  Victoria was strangled to death by a john.  The house was named after her to remind them about their purpose.

We follow a living God that has given us (gifts) … .  And we are open servants.
David Batsone, Not For Sale


July 26, 2009
Speaker: Pastor Casey Barton
Series: Lead/Feed/Intercede
Passages: Philippians 2:12-18

Casey Barton, as a youth, did drugs and alcohol.  He vandalized the local country club.  Sadly I can somewhat relate.  It seems such a common story for young men and a story I don’t want my sons to write.

When Casey became a Christian he thought “Great!  Now God can fix my life.”  Soon though he was back at the country club vandalizing again with his buddies.  At one point he was riding a golf cart with his friend at 3 AM when his friend kicked out the windshield.  At that moment he distinctly remembers hearing “I thought you wanted God to fix your life.”

You’ll Come – Hillsong


Helping Out at Senior Housing

 | July 18, 2009 2:04 PM

Today our small group went to Lytton Gardens to spend a bit of time playing board games with seniors.  Originally our whole family was going to go but one of our closest family friends’ son was having a birthday party so Ji Seon and the boys went to the party.

The last time I was in senior housing was when I was a teenager doing a paper route.  The regular paper route boy was away so they asked me to do his route which was in a local senior housing.  I remember being quite affected by that experience.  Some of the seniors looked so unhappy.  One person asked me if they could have a paper because he’s so lonely.

My grandmother lived with us so the idea of senior housing was kind of foreign to me.  I am not saying it’s wrong, I just wasn’t used to it.

Helen and Victoria

For ninety minutes our small group played various games with different seniors.  At my table Victoria and I and Audrey, who organized, and her children played Disney Yahtzee Jr. with Helen.  We asked her some questions to learn about her life.  We learned for example that one day she and three others drove out to California from Pennsylvania and when they got here they decided never to go back.  But some of her answers seemed to contradict others.

Helen definitely seemed to enjoy Victoria who liked saying hi to Helen.  Having the children there was really great.  The children had fun playing games and the seniors enjoyed their company.  In fact it seemed everyone had a good time.

Victoria enjoying herself at Lytton Gardens

I think I might like to do this again.  Maybe I am thinking too much but as we get older it’s interesting to face our mortality.


Pray for Love

 | July 5, 2009 1:54 PM

July 5 2009
Speaker: Pastor Dave Chae
Series: Lead/Feed/Intercede
Passages: Philippians 1:9-11

Philippians 1:9-11 (King James Version)

9And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment;

10That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ.

11Being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God.

Main Point:

Pray for Love so that your friends can make godly choices and fulfill God’s will in this generation!

What does the Bible say about mourning?  When Lazarus died even though Jesus knew that Lazarus was going to be resurrected the Bible says Jesus wept.  On the other hand there are other scripture verses like when Jesus said why are you mourning this child is just sleeping?  Maybe Jesus loved Lazarus and his sisters and that his weeping was his empathy with his closest friends.

In Jesus’s days if a woman’s hair is not braided she is basically saying I want to sleep with you.  In light of that it is even more scandalous that Jesus’s feet were wiped by a prostitute’s hair.

Approve means to test if something is genuine.  Pastor Dave gave an example if your love is grounded you won’t go to that topless bar with your business associates to win that account.

If we ground our love in the knowledge of God’s word and morals we will fulfill God’s will.

When’s the last time you prayed for a friend’s love to be grounded in scripture and good morals?


  1. Pray for your friend’s love to be grounded in scripture and sound morals.
  2. Learn god’s Promises
  3. “KNOW” your people
  4. … so that they can choose what is best.
  5. … godly decisions
  6. … God’s will in this generation

Pray for Love that is grounded in …

  • Experiential Knowledge of God’s Word and People (1:9b)
  • Depth of Insight – Guided by Morals (1:9n)

… so that your friends can make godly choices and fulfill God’s will in this generation. (1:10b –11a)

“All Because of Jesus”


June 28, 2009
Speaker: Pastor Dave Chae
Series: Lead/Feed/Intercede
Passages: Philippians 1:1-8

Today Dave Chae introduced the new youth ministry pastor, Casey Barton.  To let the congregation know him he did an interview of him.

Casey Barton joked about how, after doing a Facebook quiz, learned he is Optimus Prime because he will be the first one on the battlefield for his soldiers.  He also shared his story about how he met his wife.  In high school he struggled with depression and he was involved in drugs, alcohol, vandalism, etc.  One day he was invited to a youth group pizza party.  At the sermon he heard that Jesus can heal a broken life so he thought he’d give him a shot and accepted Christ.  He was lucky enough to have Godly people in his life when he was a youth and since then wanted to work with youth in the same way.

Casey Barton met Dave Chae on the Journey of Mosaic tour, they were roommates.  And later Dave extended an invitation to interview for the youth ministry pastor position.

Western Seminary is courting GrX to lease a building.

Why does Paul lead with thankfulness and prayers of joy?

  • Paul leads with thankfulness because he is so grateful for the Philippians’ Unprecedented Love (1:3-5b; 1:7-8)
  • Paul leads with prayers of joy for the Philippians because of their Partnership in the Gospel from the first day until now. (1:4-5)
  • Paul leads with thankfulness and prayers of joy for the Philippians because he is confident in God’s good work in them.  Progress in the gospel was the source of Paul’s joy and not personal comfort. (1:6)

Intensity of Paul’s Prayers

  1. intense personal nature (“my prayer for you”)
  2. constancy (“always”)
  3. all-inclusiveness (“for all of you”)
  4. joy

How do we apply this in our lives?

  1. Involvement.
  2. Sacrificial support of ministry.
  3. Consistent support of ministry.

Yesterday GrX introduced their new youth ministry pastor, Casey Barton.  Casey shared his story about how he met his wife.

Casey Barton met his wife at a shop she worked at about a year and a half after high school.  He was too shy so he didn’t introduce himself.

Later Casey found out one of his friends knew her.  He asked her to introduce him but she said “She’s too good for you. You’ll ruin her.”

He responded “Fine!  I’ll introduce myself.”

All Latex Rainbow Balloon Bouquet A few days later he went to the store where his future wife worked and bought a bunch of balloons.  She asked “What are the balloons for?”

“These balloons are for a girl I’m too shy to meet.  I am going to give them to her and leave my phone number on the card and hope she calls me.”

“Oh, isn’t that so sweet?!”

Casey Barton purchased the balloons and then gave them to her.  She pushed the balloons back and said “No, don’t give them to me!  Give them to the girl!”

Casey said “You are the girl!”, shoved the balloons back and then ran out.

That afternoon she called him.  That evening she broke up with her boyfriend.  The next evening they went on a date.

Now they are happily married and have two kids.