Sunday Worship: Contemporary @ 9:00 a.m. | Traditional @ 10:50 a.m.
First Christian Church, Grand Junction – Praising God, Changing Lives!

Sermons on Following

Jesus Made Known

And so, on this Epiphany Sunday, this Sunday on which we celebrate Jesus’ identity made known, I am asking you to consider how Jesus’ identity is being made known in our time, in YOUR life. Somehow, for some reason, you’ve made Nathanael’s choice. You’ve decided to “come and see”. You’ve decided to give up certain things that other people cling to so you can follow this Jesus. Like Nathanael, I’m guessing at least SOME of you, maybe most of you, needed a little more convincing to follow Jesus than could be had by simply listening to some other people tell you you should follow him.

A New Age

When you get down to it, this new AGE, this new ERA of Jesus, an era that’s not too unlike the era of Abraham, it’s a lot more freeing than the era of the law. It really is. But it also places a TON more responsibility upon us all. Remember when I said that it was sad that people chose against God? I bet you lament that choice of Adam and Eve just about every day. But, here’s the thing: God has been giving us a chance to re-make that decision ever since. That’s what the Bible is about.

Interruptions

I started the sermon by talking about the character Dug from the animated movie “Up”. And Dug had this way of stopping the important stuff to chase after squirrels. I’ll bet there are some Christians out there, maybe even in HERE, who think of taking the time and effort to share love with and be present with the seemingly most unworthy people is akin to chasing after squirrels. But in my reading of the scriptures, in my reading of the life and ministry of Jesus, it’s pretty much everything ELSE that is akin to chasing after squirrels. It’s pretty much everything ELSE that comprises the interruptions.

Listen to Him

At the beginning of the sermon, I mentioned a Bible study that began with the words, “All Christians want to know God’s will for their lives.” Y’all, we DO want to know God’s will for us, but, somehow, I doubt we’re going to discover it by rolling dice. Rather, we’ve got to do everything we can to HEAR Jesus’ words as provided in scripture….and then yield to what we hear. In other words, we need to LISTEN TO HIM.

What About God?

As much as I like a good fish tale, I hope when you hear the name “Jonah” in the future or think of his story, your mind will wander to something more than fish, more than Jonah. I hope your mind will wander to a God who calls you to do sometimes surprising things (by human standards, anyway); a God who journeys with you, even when you try to run in the opposite direction; a God whose love is extraordinary…even when we’re least deserving of it.

A Life of Trusting in God

While God’s followers will endure all kinds of crises, all kinds of calamities, God is also there with with them – with you – in the midst of a crisis. And God WILL provide a response, even if it’s no more than the response of God’s presence and comfort (which is actually quite a lot)…and will often be exactly what you need to get through. In whatever difficulties you encounter, I encourage you not to despair but to look for God’s response.

But to Serve

Maybe I’m thinking too big. Maybe what Jesus wants is for us to stay in our houses of worship, talking to each other, and leaving everybody out there to fend for themselves. Maybe, but I don’t think so. Actually, I’m pretty sure those big dreams and visions I have about the way it could be – even just here, in Grand Junction – are more in line with what Jesus meant when he said: