The Place Where God Dwells

For the sons of Korah, the authors of Psalm 84, there was no better place to be than the Temple. The temple was intended by God to be an earthly representation of God’s heavenly courts. A place where heaven and earth met. Even today, when we worship it gives us a foretaste of heaven. Today, we give God thanks for this house of worship as we celebrate the 10th anniversary of the consecration of this building. Since that day there have been approximately 520 Sundays and probably at least 2000 opportunities for corporate worship! At the same time, we remember that the church is not a building, it is people!

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Count Your Blessings

Our contemporary celebration of Thanksgiving arises from a European tradition with deep Christian roots, recognizing the blessings and provision of Almighty God either at harvest time or after deliverance from significant trouble. And yet, we forget this sometimes. We forget that God is the one who provides, and we take that burden upon ourselves. We strive after the things of this world, searching for happiness, searching for meaning, searching for peace. Jesus’ words remind us to set our anxieties aside. He tells us that when we focus on the things of this world, we will find anxiety. But, when we focus on God and his Kingdom instead, everything else falls into its own right place.

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The Crucified King

As Americans, we don’t have much of an appreciation for the role of a King. In fact, you might say that the roots of our nations are decidedly anti-king. Our constitution was set up with a system of checks and balances to make sure that no one person could hold all the power at one time. We have a right to be afraid of earthly kings, but Jesus is a king that will never fail us. His rule is just and perfect, he always has our best interests and the best interests of his kingdom in mind. And one day he will make right all that is broken in this world.

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Spiritual Preparation for Hurricanes

If you have lived in Florida for any amount of time, you know a thing or two about how to prepare for hurricanes. You buy batteries, water, and food; and you put down sandbags and put away the loose objects in your yard. But have you ever considered what is involved in spiritually preparing for a hurricane, or any other storm of life for that matter? This sermon explores some key ways we can get ready when we know a storm is coming.

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Patriotism, Nationalism, and the Kingdom of God

Two similar and yet increasingly different words have been frequently used in talking about United States politics in recent years: patriotism and nationalism. Both words talk of love and affection for one’s country, but nationalism has come to mean exalting your country (or your agenda) above all other countries (or agendas) with no regard for the needs of the other. The truth is, as Christians, we must love the Kingdom of God, which transcends all races and national boundaries, more than the nations of this world, even as we seek the welfare of the nation where we have been planted.

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Twelve Stones of Remembrance

God held back the water of the river Jordan so that the people of Israel could cross on dry ground as they made their way into the land of Canaan. As they crossed, God instructed them to pick up twelve large stones from the river bed, and Joshua arranged them in a pile on the other side. These stones were to remain there as a testimony, a reminder of the faithfulness of God and a mechanism for passing the faith down to through the generations. When we look back on the stories of God’s faithfulness, both in our own lives, and in the history of God’s people, it helps us to face the obstacles that are yet to come.

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Waiting on God’s Promises

How are we to know that God’s promises will come true? This was a question Abraham asked of God, and it is a common question today. Abraham looked to the past faithfulness of God and the covenant that God made with him. We can look to these same things, and when we do, it will help us to wait patiently.

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The Reset Button

If you know anything about computers, you will know that they break. Often the fix is simply to push the reset button. Our lives are similar in that they quickly become corrupted by sin. Thankfully we have a God who is loving and merciful. When we come to him in repentance, he pushes the reset button and restores us.

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Poetic Truth

Poetry can be beautiful and it can express truth in ways that prose can’t, but it can also be cryptic! The prologue of the Gospel of John is much like poetry, it is beautiful, and it can be hard to understand at first, but it contains some important truth about who God is and who we are, along with a surprise that is almost too good to be true (but it is true!).

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