January 6, 2019: In the Cave

Presented by Casey Kluver (00:52)

After David was anointed as the king of Israel, he found himself running for his life because the current king felt threatened.  The future king of Israel was reduced to hide in cave.  David could have concluded that the dark cave meant his future as king was over. Yet in the cave he found a group of followers, many of whom would later become the mightiest men of his army.
You may end up in a cave, but that doesn’t mean the journey is over.  You cannot have growth without resistance.  Don’t give up in God because he hasn’t given up on you.

Scripture references: 1 Sam 22:1-2; 2 Sam 23:15-39

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July 31, 2016 – Praise on Purpose

Preached by Cortney Kluver (00:47)

Elijah, the mighty prophet of God, experienced a great triumph over the enemies of God.  When word of the victory reached the evil queen Jezebel, she immediately threatened to kill Elijah.  The surprise in the story is Elijah’s response.  Instead of standing in confidence in the faith of God, the faithfulness God just displayed in a awe inspiring way, Elijah gives up and turns to fear.  He fears the threats of the dangerous queen and runs away.  Even when God appears to Elijah and promises faithful protection, Elijah determines to be depressed.  It took some forty days and more miraculous manifestations of God before Elijah determined to be faithful.

Real stuff happens in our lives that encourage depression.  There is a time to grieve and a time to mourn, but the way out is the time to rejoice.  Feeling happy is not the cure to depression.  Self will and determination is not the cure.  As Elijah learned, depression is real, God cares for us and gives us patience during our depression, and the way out is trusting God’s faithfulness.  Cry out to God in your pity and tell him how you feel and why you feel it, but listen to his “still small voice” and enter into his joy.  Depression is big, but not bigger than Jesus.  Depression is mighty, but not mightier than Jesus.  Praise is the weapon of our battle.  Praise God as the King to be praised.

 

Scripture References: 1 Kings 19:1-18

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August 30, 2015 – Philippians, part 4 – How to Hope in Rough Times

Preached by Rod Benner (00:43)

Rod continues a new series on the book of Philippians.

As Paul sat in chains, under house arrest by Roman guards, he told his friends, “Don’t worry about me.” Although he would rather be free, we was more concerned about giving great praise to God. In a terrible, inconvenient, depressing, unfair, and unjust situation he said, “Because of my imprisonment I get to tell all of these guards about Jesus! That’s more important than my physical freedom.”

Every circumstance in your life is an opportunity to learn more about God and the point of life. You don’t always pick your circumstances but you can choose to turn any circumstance (any circumstance!) into an opportunity to honor and praise God. Remember and learn what matters. Don’t sacrifice the relationship with your spouse, your kids, or your neighbors and coworkers for unimportant matters. Paul isn’t saying, “Just look at the glass half full.” Rather, he’s saying, “Look to Jesus and see God the Father.” The point of life is to honor God, know Jesus, and love others (ie. family, neighbors, co-workers, others). Understand what really matters to hope through rough times.

Scripture References:
Philippians 1:12-19

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