Monday, September 27, 2010

2020 Vision: Devotional Guide, Week III


Reading: Philippians 1:27-30


What does it mean to live on earth as a citizen of heaven?

Write down a definition of conduct that is “worthy of the Good News of Jesus Christ.” Does that definition describe your life?

How do I protect the unity of the church by “standing side by side, fighting together for the faith?”


Reading: Acts 2:41-47


According to Acts 2:42-47, what ingredients make up a small group?

Are you seeking out other believers for fellowship, prayer, and teaching?

A healthy, loving church will grow in numbers. What are you doing to make your church the kind of place that will attract others to Christ?


Reading: Romans 14:17-19; Hebrews 10:23-25


What should be the “aim” of your life when it comes to your involvement in your church family?

Write down the names of some people in your small group and in your church family that need encouragement. How can you best encourage them? Pray for them right now?


· People will accept you for who you are.

· People will pray for you to become what God wants you to be.

· People will support you with kindness and love.

· People will rejoice with you in good times and care for you in hard times.

· People will welcome you into the Christ-centered community of faith.

· People will help you apply the unchangeable truths of the Bible to your life.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Devotional Guide, Week II


Reading: Mark 12:30-31 and Revelation 4:11


Why were you created according to Rev. 4:11?

How do you summarize all God’s laws?

How does Jesus’ command to love God and others rule your thoughts, decisions, and actions?


Reading: John 4:1-26


Why is God more concerned about the attitude of worshippers than he is the location of worship?

How do you worship in spirit and in truth?

Conclude your devotional time today by telling God all the reasons why you love and worship Him today.


Reading: Psalm 95 and Psalm 100


How do you acknowledge before a watching world that the Lord is God?

How does your attitude of worship compare with Psalm 100?

Ask the Lord to help you lay aside worship styles and preferences this week in order to truly experience His presence in genuine worship?

On His worship CD Michael W. Smith sings of the Heart of Worship. That is what unites us. Worship is the gathering of hearts that have been fully transformed by the power of the eternal gospel of God. How’s your heart this week? Is it about you, or is it about Jesus? Let’s make it all about Him!!

Heart of Worship


When the music fades
All is stripped away
And I simply come
Longing just to bring
Something that's of worth
That will bless your heart

I'll bring You more than a song
For a song in itself
Is not what You have required
You search much deeper within
Through the way things appear
You're looking into my heart

I'm coming back to the heart of worship
And it's all about You
It's all about You, Jesus
I'm sorry, Lord, for the thing I've made it
When it's all about You
It's all about You, Jesus

Words and Music by Matt Redman

Monday, September 13, 2010

2020 Vision: Devotional Guide Week 1


Reading: John 20: 19-21 and Matthew 28: 19-20


What did Jesus mean when he said, “As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you”? What is he sending you out to do?

How would you define success when it comes to the Great Commission?

There are two things you can do right now that you will not do in heaven: sin and tell lost people about Jesus. Which of these two do you think God has left you on earth to do? How are you engaged in it right now?


Reading: Zephaniah 3:17 and Matthew 16:13-18


Walk through in your mind when God “mightily” saved you?

Is the Great Commission still God’s plan today?

Are you following God’s plan?


Reading: II Corinthians 12:9 and Acts 4:13


How does God equip and sustain you in your mission?

How is God’s power displayed in our weakness?

What is it that convinces people of God’s power according to Acts 4:13?

How Do You Know If Your Vision Is From God?

By Perry Noble

  • If you feel confident that you can accomplish what is in front of you with no problem at all… then you didn’t hear from God.
  • If no one is angry at you… then you didn’t hear from God.
  • If you don’t have to ask anyone to sacrifice to make the vision come true… then you didn’t hear from God.
  • If you have the money in the bank to do what God has asked your church to do… then you didn’t hear from God.
  • If every step is perfectly designed and nothing happens to totally throw you off along the way…then you didn’t hear from God.
  • If someone doesn’t try to talk you out of what you are about to attempt… then you didn’t hear from God.
  • If you don’t stay up at night thinking about the vision…then you didn’t hear from God.
  • If your vision is in contradiction to God’s Word…then you didn’t hear from God.
  • If you know all of the answers… then you didn’t hear from God.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

A Time to Remember

This summer my family had the privilege of attending Student Leadership University in Washington, DC. We arrived in DC a day early in order to do some sightseeing before the conference began. We had never been to DC and I wanted to experience the museums with my family. I would encourage you to make a journey to DC if you have never been.

The sights of our nation’s capitol are incredible: the Capitol, White House, Holocaust Museum, National Archives, and Air and Space Museum. The monuments simply leave you speechless. The highlight of our conference tour was Christ Church, the place where George Washington attended worship with his family. Christ Church was where Robert E. Lee came to worship. We sat in that little church and sang Amazing Grace. Wow! It was incredible.

However, the first place we went when we arrived was Arlington National Cemetery. The reason: Major Dwayne Williams. Major Williams was working in the Pentagon on September 11, 2001 when hijackers flew American Airlines Flight 77 into the Pentagon at 9:37 a.m., crashing into the military headquarters building and killing 189 people (64 on the plane and 125 on the ground), including Major Dwayne Williams.

I have the incredible privilege of serving as Pearl Williams’ pastor. She is Dwayne’s mother. She sat with me before we left for Washington and recounted the events following our nation’s worst attack, describing in graphic detail the pain of losing a son in the worst act of evil our nation has ever seen. Then she handed me a gift: a parking permit to drive through Arlington Cemetery, a map of the cemetery showing the exact location of the Pentagon Memorial, and the final resting place of her son.

Arlington is recognized by most for the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and the Kennedy memorial. And they were impressive, especially the “changing of the guard.” Yet, the first place we drove to once inside the cemetery was the Pentagon Memorial and the burial place of Pearl’s son.

We were reminded at Arlington of the tremendous sacrifice of so many for the freedoms we hold dear. We were reminded of the bravery that was displayed in every section of the cemetery. We were reminded of the grief every family must have experienced when the news of loss knocked upon their door. We were reminded of Pearl.

Nine years later the visual drama of 9/11 still runs through our minds. Nine years later families who lost loved ones in New York, Washington, and in Pennsylvania still grieve. Now, nine years later we have an opportunity to honor their sacrifice. This Saturday (9/11) at 11:00 AM at Jacksonville Cemetery, a memorial service will be held for Major Dwayne Williams. Pearl would be both comforted and honored by your presence. Remember that so many paid a high price upon the altar of freedom. Honor them. Pray for their families. Honor Pearl. And remember that the ultimate sacrifice took place over 2000 years ago at a place called Calvary.