2008 Sermons

Daily Bread, Daily Forgiveness01/06/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Forgiveness, Healing, Prayer
  • In the next part of the Lord's Prayer, Jesus teaches that prayer is about daily dependence on God to meet our needs, even though most people in our self-sufficient world do not think this way. We also discover the crucial role that forgiveness plays in our lives and the surprising freedom it can bring.

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Puppets and Dresses01/13/08

  • Speaker – Seth McCoy
     
  • Topics – Salvation, Covenant, Faithfulness
  • Is the good news of Jesus Christ really as good in your mind as it was in the mind of Jesus? God's dream for humanity is far more amazing than most of us realize. He wants to "marry" us, to invite us into his family and walk in radical love with us.

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Can God Trust You?01/20/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Kingdom of God, Transformation, Free Will, Temptation
  • Every day we confront choices that reflect and form our character. Will we live for ourselves, or for the Kingdom? God wants us to be trustworthy for Kingdom service and it’s true that he tests us to refine our character, but he doesn’t tempt anyone. If that’s true, why does Jesus teach us to pray, “lead us not into temptation?”

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The Insane Importance of Prayer01/27/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Prayer, Transformation, Power
  • Is prayer really that important? Does it really play a purpose in the grand scheme of things? If we believe the Scriptures to be true, it seems that prayer is “insanely” important – so much that we are to pray with “shameless audacity.” Some get bogged down with the idea of prayer because they see it as a religious ritual that is too complex and difficult to do in our regular lives. Yet the reality is that prayer is basically talking with God in an ordinary way about our ordinary lives.

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Scorpions, Eggs and Prayer, Part 102/03/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Faith, Prayer, Spiritual Warfare
  • We live in a spiritual war zone. We must partner with God to bring about his will on earth as it is in heaven. How can we do this? Simply through prayer! We can impact the world by laboring with God to resist the forces of evil through spiritual warfare. We can join in this battle by praying continually with faith and persistence believing our prayers will impact the kingdom on earth as it is in heaven.

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Scorpions, Eggs and Prayer, Part 202/10/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Faith, Prayer, Spiritual Warfare, Free Will, God's Will
  • Why does it seem like some prayers work while others don’t give us the results we want? If our prayers don’t seem to work, who is to blame? God? Ourselves? Others? To begin to understand prayer, we must break free from a simplistic and commonly held “magical view” of prayer. There are many variables that affect prayer and faith and how they work together.

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When God Doesn't Make Sense02/17/08

  • Speaker – Scott Abbott
     
  • Topics – Faith, Healing, Prayer, Problem of Evil, Sin, God's Will
  • As a person with muscular dystrophy, Scott has countless personal experiences that illustrate the principles that Greg taught about in the previous two sermons. Scott has personally wrestled with questions about why some prayers are answered and others are not – most fundamentally related to why he himself hasn’t been healed.

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1 2 2 2 102/24/08

  • Speaker – Dwayne Polk
     
  • Prayer
  • Is hearing God really a possibility? Can we live in a dynamic conversation with God despite so many different voices competing for our attention on a daily basis? In this message, Dwayne explains the basic beliefs that are required for this kind of conversation, and breaks down some of the common obstacles that stand in the way.

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Taking Back the House03/02/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Love, Non-Violence, Sacrifice, Salvation
  • In Luke 11, Jesus talks about this world as a "house" that Satan guards. As Kingdom people, what do we do with that? If we look to Jesus, he simply tells us to take back the house. And how exactly do we do that? We don’t adopt the patterns of Satan and try to overcome violence with violence. Looking again to Jesus, he shows us that the only thing that can overpower evil, and that is self-sacrificial love. Only love can conquer evil; only light can dispel darkness.

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Fighting the Right Enemy03/09/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Love, Non-Violence, Prayer, Spiritual Warfare
  • Is there really a spiritual war? Do we believe that there is such a thing as a spiritual reality? If we don’t, we will engage the wrong enemy. Instead of fighting the powers of Satan, we will target other humans, often with hatred and violence. Spiritual warfare practiced through love and prayer is central to the Christian walk, but we need constant reminders in our Western culture that there really is a spiritual war going on.

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Are You in the Game?03/16/08

  • Speaker – Annie Perdue-Olson
     
  • Topics – Kingdom of God, Spiritual Warfare, Transformation
  • Followers of Jesus are called to recognize the spiritual war we’re in and “get in the game” because there is no neutral zone of safety. Casual Christianity is not an option from Jesus’ perspective – he makes it clear that we cannot settle for a comfortable faith. We are called out of safe (and boring!) Christianity into the reality of a war where we stand up for truth in the midst of a world full of lies.

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No Fear03/23/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Evangelism, Fear, Resurrection
  • Time is ticking away. Being alive in this world means that we are moving toward death, and to some degree that makes most of us afraid. That fear can drive us to many different sources of worldly security, but the good news (the Easter news!) is that no one needs to live in fear.

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Get Real03/30/08

  • Speakers – Greg Boyd, Scott Boren
     
  • Topics – Leadership, Spiritual Gifts
  • In our culture celebrity worship is rampant. Because of their money, talent, and the attention they receive, many of us live through pop icons. Sadly, this same mentality creeps into the church. We can be tempted to elevate church leaders above everyone else and think that the Kingdom happens through them alone. Their prayers count more. Their words are more powerful. Their service is more significant. Jesus came to destroy this thinking!

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Facing Reality04/06/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Relationships, Repentance
  • Jesus didn’t water down his message for the crowds or give them just what they wanted to hear. Jesus called them (and us) to repent – to face reality and turn from living in lies that hinder our ability to participate in what God is doing in the world. God’s Kingdom happens in our lives and in our communities when we repent and line our lives up with God’s way of looking at the world and God’s ways of living.

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Free to Shine04/13/08

  • Speaker – Dwayne Polk
     
  • Topics – Love, Pain & Suffering, Transformation
  • Jesus came to set us free so that we can shine with his love. But sometimes darkness in our own heart gets in the way of the life he wants for us. Many times our own thoughts, beliefs and feelings are at the root of why we don’t live as Kingdom people. A key to addressing this darkness is to realize that our perceptions are not what’s real, and instead align our thoughts and feelings with God’s truth.

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Inside-Out04/20/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Healing, Pain & Suffering, Poverty, Transformation
  • How does true spiritual change occur? Sometimes we focus on the outside and try to change ourselves through what we do. But we don’t become clean by paying attention to external “religious” behaviors. In this sermon we’re challenged with the example of generosity to the poor and learn that becoming clean is an “inside-out” process, where we allow the Spirit of God to transform us on the inside so that our outside behavior lines up with his Kingdom.

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What Kind of Leadership?04/27/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Leadership
  • Leaders are crucial to what God is doing to spread his Kingdom. While there are many good church leaders who serve from healthy perspectives, there are far too many who have caused pain by abusing those in their communities. Jesus boldly challenged such religious leaders in his time, and what he said gives us a biblical understanding of leadership and how it should operate in the church.

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Beyond the Comfort Zone05/04/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Discipleship, Sacrifice, Hypocrisy
  • Some of Jesus' words were very challenging to the people of his time, and for us. One of the traits that he gave strong warnings about was hypocrisy – when our "public" lives don't match who we really are. Keeping these parts of our lives aligned is a major challenge and it almost always requires sacrifice. We don't like to move outside our comfort zones, but it's what is required if we want to partner with God to build his Kingdom.

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Taking Out the Trash05/11/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Salvation, Sin, Transformation
  • What does it mean to "get saved?" Many people (especially people in the United States) see salvation as a one time event and the result of "believing" certain things about God. While belief is important, salvation encompasses much more than that. The salvation that God offers is a continual personal transformation where the trash of our old lives is replaced by the beauty of God's Kingdom.

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Stuffocating05/18/08

  • Speaker – Sandra Unger
     
  • Topics – Greed, Poverty, Individualism
  • No one wants to be told how to spend their money, but Jesus was not silent on the subject. He warned against greed and storing up treasures for ourselves while calling us to care for the poor and those who are less fortunate. His words may cause us discomfort, but they confront a very strong individualistic mindset that is just as prevalent in the church today as it is in secular culture.

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Taking Off the Headphones05/25/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Discipleship, Presence of God
  • Is God's presence merely something we expect to experience once a week during a church service? Or maybe even once a day during a time of prayer? The truth is that God's presence pervades our life, but we are usually to distracted to notice. We are invited to experience God's presence on a moment by moment basis in our daily lives.

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Rich Towards God06/01/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Generosity, Love, Politics
  • Many times the modern American church views God as a judge or lawyer and the main goal of the church is to enforce certain rules. While God is the ultimate judge, he is also madly in love with humanity and wants to see everyone restored. If we look at how God has been extravagantly rich towards us, we begin to see what it means for us to be rich towards God and others.

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Ravens and Wildflowers06/08/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Fear, Joy, Peace
  • As a society, we’re extremely worried. Concern about countless issues pervades our lives: our relationships, our kids, terror attacks, global warming, pandemics, the economy, living the American Dream – if we’re not careful, this worry can consume us. Jesus provides us with the Kingdom alternative to worrying, and it’s surprisingly related to birds and flowers.

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Trusting Dad06/15/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Faith, Fear, Kingdom of God, Love
  • So many of us have a messed up view of God. We don’t understand how our Father in heaven loves us beyond imagination. Because we lack a clear picture of God’s love, we cling to this world and all of its concerns. Our lives can get consumed by worry. But when we see the reality of God’s love, this world's problems are small by comparison.

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The Return06/22/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – End Times, Fear, Faithfulness
  • Many well-meaning Christians speculate about the end of the world and the return of Jesus. The problem is that most of these perspectives vary greatly and can cause a lot of fear and stress. But when we hear Jesus’ teaching about the end of the world, he focuses us in a direction that is quite different than many of today’s popular ideas.

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The Fire God06/29/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Healing, Hell, Love, Salvation
  • God is a FIRE. To all who are open to him, God’s presence is a fire of love, salvation, healing and purification. To all who are not, God’s presence is experienced as a fire of destruction. Jesus reminds and warns us to build our lives on him; depending upon where our hearts are, God’s fiery and holy love either saves and purifies us, or it destroys.

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Held07/06/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Pain & Suffering, Problem of Evil, Free Will, God's Will
  • Many people blame God for the terrible things that happen in our world: the death of a loved one, illnesses, natural disasters, even acts of terror. Some claim that these are ways that God judges and punishes us. But Jesus gives us a very different picture of God. Jesus reveals that despite the evil in our world, God is always on our side, wants what is best for us, and loves us beyond measure.

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Let God Be Glorified07/13/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Pain & Suffering, Problem of Evil, God's Will
  • Tragedies happen. This world is far from God’s ideal, and we must be ready to respond in God’s way when we find ourselves in difficult situations. Jesus shows us some clear ways to think and act so that we don’t fall into traps of judgment or guilt when life doesn’t work out the way we want. We also must remember that even though God doesn’t cause painful situations, he can always bring good out of them.

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Repent or Perish07/20/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Jesus often taught about the love of God, but in this passage he also says “...unless you repent, you will all perish.” This is a very unpopular passage as it is commonly understood, as most people assume Jesus is using the fear of hell to scare us into repentance. The truth is that sin really does lead to perishing, but it’s not because of God’s arbitrary wrath.

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The Porcupine Dance07/27/08

  • Speaker – Annie Perdue-Olson
     
  • Topics – Forgiveness, Grace, Pain & Suffering
  • Forgiveness is always easier to talk about than to actually do. But without it we are alone and isolated, and can be consumed by hurt. Jesus taught about how we should forgive each other through parables: because we experience God’s great forgiveness, we share the same with others who have wronged us. And as a result, we learn how to live our lives with each other and experience the freedom that God wants for us.

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Daredevil of Love08/03/08

  • Speaker – Dwayne Polk
     
  • Topics – Fear, Power
  • We are called to live as daredevils, but most of us are bound by fears of some kind. God didn’t make us to be timid people who are dependent on worldly things; we are meant to be free from fear and complete in love. He wants to set us free so that we have the confidence to be daredevils.

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Speaking the Kingdom08/10/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Healing, Spiritual Warfare, Power
  • Our passage this week shows Jesus healing a crippled woman. Jesus and his disciples regularly healed the sick and the lame and cast out demons by taking authority over the situation "in Jesus' name." This challenges us to consider the power and authority our own words and actions have in our daily lives.

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The Evil of Religion08/17/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Relationships, Covenant
  • Religion or relationship? We need to be careful about which term best describes how we engage our faith. Through his actions and teaching, Jesus shows us clear distinctions between viewing Kingdom life as a religion or as a personal relationship.

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Defying Tanks08/24/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Community, Faith, Spiritual Warfare
  • Jesus called a crippled woman forward despite the many forces working against her. She answered the call by stepping into the powerful healing of God, and immediately she stood up and praised God. We can see this as an analogy for responding to the call of God in today’s hurting world and the powerful forces that we come up against.

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The Mustard Seed Kingdom08/31/08

  • Speaker – Seth McCoy
     
  • Topics – Kingdom of God, Sacrifice
  • Jesus described God’s Kingdom like a mustard seed and like yeast. What did he mean? And what do Jesus’ unusual parables have to do with our lives today? When we consider how his original audience would have heard Jesus’ words, it helps us discover just how challenging his teachings are for us today.

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The Narrow Door09/07/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Heaven, Hell, Salvation
  • Jesus taught that the way to salvation is narrow, but what exactly does that mean? Who gets saved? How does someone get saved? These are big questions, and the answers will surprise many people – even some who have attended church their entire lives. Discover what Jesus meant when he called us to enter the “narrow door.”

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Caught Up In His Beauty09/14/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Worship, Transformation
  • Why do we worship God? Why is it so central to the life of Christians? This sermon addresses how worship is about ascribing worth to God and communing with him. Worship can transform our lives if we’re willing to get “caught up” in it.

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Praise Him09/21/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Spiritual Warfare, Worship, Transformation
  • Praise Him! We may not always feel like praising God, however, there is something transformational about praise that realigns how we see God and how we see our own situations. Praise is one of the ways we fight against the lies of the enemy and walk in the victory of Jesus. Discover how praise can impact your life right now.

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Run for Cover09/28/08

  • Speaker – Dwayne Polk
     
  • To whom do we run when we are need? Where do we place our trust when we need protection? There are many things in this world that offer safety and shelter, but only in Jesus can we find true shelter, peace and love.

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The Kingdom: It's Really Upside Down10/05/08

  • Speakers – Greg Boyd, Scott Boren
     
  • Topics – Kingdom of God, Relationships, Humility
  • God's unique way of growing his kingdom isn't what we may expect from a king. In fact, many times he flips our expectations completely upside down. In a conversation with the Pharisees in Luke 14, Jesus  demonstrates this beautiful uniqueness and reveals the impact it can have on how we relate to each other in our everyday activities.

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The Upside Down Invitation10/12/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Grace, Kingdom of God
  • Blessed are those who share in God’s Kingdom meal – what an awesome experience! But who gets in on it? Those of us who think that we have the inside track might be shocked at how Jesus turns our expectations upside down. And some of us who are sure we’re “out” will be surprised at Jesus’ open invitation.

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It's Free but Costs Everything10/19/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Discipleship, Sacrifice, Transformation
  • Jesus’ Kingdom is open to all of us, but he asks everything from those who follow him. This is a radical call to actually reorient our lives, which is much more than simply a willingness to do so if the circumstances present themselves. If we take these words of Jesus seriously, they will change our lives in ways we cannot predict.

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The Lord is My Shepherd10/26/08

  • Speaker – Shawna Boren
     
  • Topics – Grace, Love
  • In the familiar Parable of the Lost Sheep, Jesus shows us a God who, out of his great love, goes after outcasts deprived of opportunities, safety and rights. Sharing from her own personal experience, Shawna illustrates this love and helps us understand the extreme nature of God’s goodness.

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Is God Really Like That?11/02/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Grace, Judgment, Humility
  • Our perspective about what God is like deeply affects our relationship with him. Is he a distant, immovable being or does Jesus give us a different view of God? God is more upside down and different than many of us realize.

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God is Waiting11/09/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Grace, Love, Free Will
  • In the parable of the Prodigal Son, Jesus teaches about the love of God. Instead of using his power to force us to choose what’s best, God loves us so much that he gives us room to cause him pain in our relationship with him. And then when we do, he waits for us to return to him and runs to meet us. God runs to us because he loves us more than we can fathom.

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Confronted By Upside Down11/16/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Grace, Judgment, Justice
  • There are two sons in the parable of the Prodigal Son, and in this passage we find out how the older son responds when the younger son returns home. He’s judgmental of his brother, but it’s easy to understand why because his reaction stems from a sense of justice that we all share. However, the Kingdom of God challenges us to avoid judgments and instead, extend God’s grace to others.

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Revolting Against Normal11/23/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Most of the time we try to fit Jesus into our culturally-accepted view of God, and the early Christians did the same thing. But Jesus doesn’t fit into our categories. As Kingdom people, we’re meant to follow Jesus’ example and revolt against what’s normal in our culture. Three disciplines that can help us are practicing God’s presence, fasting and community.

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Shrewd for the Kingdom11/30/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Generosity, Money, Faithfulness
  • What does it mean to use material resources in a godly way? All of our money and “stuff” will pass away but the relationships we have with people have real eternal value. God wants us to use our resources to advance his Kingdom rather than our own.

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This Is What We Do12/07/08

  • Speaker – Sandra Unger
     
  • Topics – Generosity, Relationships, Sacrifice
  • Christians are called to live generously all year round – not just at Christmas time. Jesus models four distinctives that we are to imitate in our lives and in our communities. We can easily get caught in the flow of our culture so these distinctives are challenging for us, but they’re crucial for expanding God’s Kingdom.

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Christmas Guilt12/14/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Generosity, Judgment, Money, Guilt
  • As Kingdom people, we always want to be aware of the dangers of consumerism and irresponsible spending. However, if we take on too much responsibility for fixing the world we can fall into guilt and become judgmental. Jesus modeled a balance between responsibility to those who are less fortunate, and the freedom we have to celebrate and share the good things that God has given us.

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Mary's Messy Yes12/21/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Faith, Calling
  • Mary, the mother of Jesus, is one of the Bible’s great examples of faith. God chose her as the human vessel through which God would enter the world! Mary responded with great faith even though it would certainly introduce many challenges and change her life’s path.

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Mary, Did You Know?12/24/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Fear, God's Will, Calling
  • One of the best ways to draw out the meaning of Christmas is to look at the experience of Mary. Saying “yes” to God meant she would have to pay a tremendous price, but she was willing. Will we do the same with our lives? We are called to accept that doing God’s will is greater than any fears we might have.

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Our One and Only Allegiance12/28/08

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Topics – Sacrifice, God's Will
  • Jesus tells us that “no one can serve two masters.” But what could this possibly mean? Don’t we all have many obligations and responsibilities? This message challenges us to live every area of our life in devotion to God.

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