Very aware that I haven’t been writing much lately – a dead heat between lack of mood/muse and lack of opportunity really… I was listening to a sermon as I was doing dishes and bottles this evening, and I thought I’d share a couple of sermons that have shaped or impacted some of my thinking and outlook towards this life and how we live within it.
Brad Buser at Cornerstone Simi 01/08/06 – “Why Should I leave Simi Valley”
There’s something a little earth-shattering here (in both personal and global senses of the phrase), if you let the truth Bad speaks impact you – the fact that my children may get sick or die, or that I might myself get sick or die, while not insignificant, is much less significant than the command of God to take the gospel to the ends of the earth (or to that weird homeless guy outside Wal-Mart), or the call of God on your life to fulfil that command in whatever sphere He leads you to do it.
Also, Brad makes a case for scripture, Jesus in Matthew 28, being enough of a command to go to the ends of the earth…to actually pick up and go to the ends of the earth.
Now…can’t really point to anything too ‘crazy’ that I’ve lived out in application of this…yet. I’m joined with a wonderful woman who is not excited about selling everything and moving to some unknown unreached part of the world just because (probably the only reason I’m not somewhere ‘else’ right now). But whenever we’re talking about…anything, I’m frequently reminded that…it’s not about me, sacrifice and suffering are part of the deal and are insignificant in the light of and in service of His greater cause.
And what I was listening to tonight – not specifically “small groups” as a formal structure or anything, but the idea of being ‘together’ and having relationships with other Christians and living our lives as a part of this huge community some call “the church” – use whatever terms for it you like (“living/doing life together” is one I both loath and have a deep affinity for) is something I’m consistently deeply convicted about.
John Piper at Bethlehem Baptist on 09/20/98 – “Measures of Faith, Gifts of Grace, Ministry in Small Groups”
Honestly, if you’re looking for a sermon series to throw on your iPod or to listen through, maybe in the car or something, the archives at Desiring God or Cornerstone Simi. Francis Chan’s writing and preaching ministry has had a big impact on my life the last few years; the oldest sermons on Cornerstone’s site are a year long series he preached on Revelation back in 2005. We ended up listening through them (well, starting to, I don’t think we finished before we moved) with a group of people from MSBC in Denton.