here are the main points of my sermons from the past couple of weeks:
- human suffering is an inevitable part of the human experience.
- god picked suffering as the way to fix the problem of sin and separation.
- jesus suffered and by his suffering we are redeemed.
- the resurrection shows us hope and possibilities beyond our wildest comprehension.
- the book of james starts off with the most basic reality of life: it will be full of trials and difficulties.
- we are to count everything we go through…everything…all of it as joy.
- we do that so we will be able to persevere…more of the same.
that’s life and we better learn quickly that if jesus isn’t enough…not jesus plus a cure…or jesus and a victory…or jesus and more money…or jesus plus that new job…then we’re never really gonna understand what it means to be part of the kingdom.
for me, it’s that simple.
so here are some personal things i got out of my own sermon:
- i’m hurt. i’ll get hurt again. i need to get over it.
- sometimes i find myself living in the past. see line above.
- i have a tendency to dwell more on problems than on solutions. i need to shift the balance of “thought power” in my life.
- honest…ruthless honesty…is the only way to live. that doesn’t always mean to speak your mind. it does mean that we need to be honest with ourselves and with god. always.
- the phrase “jesus is enough” can and should be the most practically powerful words in my vocabulary.
- when i sit and wish someone would say “thanks” for the good things i have done, i wonder if it’s really god who i wish would say “thank you” to me? for all the good things i have done for him. what a simply repulsive thought!
- i am who i am. if jesus is enough for me, am i enough for jesus?
the learning curve i am on these days is like the back corner of the texas motor speedway on lap 197…