Sermons on Spiritual Growth

Our Daily Bread

We come to the part of this beautiful prayer where Jesus leads us to express our needs. There are three requests–Give us our bread, forgive us our debts, and lead us not into temptation–and we’ll consider the first one tomorrow. The one about the bread is the only one that has to do with physical needs, and it’s very brief. You’ll notice there’s nothing extraordinary there–no requests for luxuries, obviously, and not even a request for something more than simply…

Waiting on God

Most of us don’t enjoy waiting, but it’s interesting how God seems to think it’s an important part of the walk of faith. How long did Abraham and Sarah wait for Isaac? Jacob waited for Rachel. Joseph waited for years in Egypt, and of course the Hebrews waited in slavery for 400 years. Throughout centuries of struggle, Israel longed for the anticipated Messiah. And we wait as well. In the text above, Paul says that “in this tent we groan,” and…

Counterintuitive Truths: Content in Every Situation

In some ways, Christianity is taking a beating in our post-Christian society. Much of the secular media seems to jump at any opportunity to point out inconsistencies or hypocrisies in Christians. So I think it’s good for us to be reminded that the way of Christ actually is the best way to live, even when it seems counterintuitive. Since God knows our true nature, it shouldn’t surprise us that living according to his plan will be best for us. In…

Counterintuitive Truths: It is More Blessed to Give

We aren’t Christians because it’s an easier life, but because we believe Jesus is the Son of God. Nevertheless, when we follow Christ we pursue a way of life that is consistent with God’s creative purposes for us. In other words, it may not be easier, but it leads to what Jesus calls the “abundant” life. In so many ways it’s counterintuitive, though. Jesus reigns over an upside-down kingdom . . . it subverts the way that comes naturally to…

A Resurrection Meal

Our text describes the last meal that Jesus ate with his disciples as far as Luke’s gospel is concerned. And it’s a really important one. Luke seems intent on making sure we think about Jesus’ resurrected body (he passes through walls, yet has flesh and bones and eats real food). It’s interesting that Luke specifies that Jesus ate the fish “before” the disciples . . . and not just “with” them. Jesus clearly wants to make a point out of the fact…