Sermons by Donnie Johnson
From time to time we become aware that there are gaps between the world we live in and the way Jesus has taught us to live. In this new series, we will explore Jesus’ teachings from his sermon on the mount.
I can trust God – Psalm 20:7 God has called me to preach His word – 2 Timothy 4:1-2 The Lord is near to the brokenhearted – Psalm 34:18 Don’t be afraid – Joshua 1:9 I love my church – 1 Thessalonians 2:19-20
Throughout this series we have looked at 3 core habits of the Christian: reading Scripture, attending church, and today’s topic, prayer. Prayer is not complicated; a young child can pray. But it can be difficult! No one feels like they are an expert at prayer. Everyone feels like they need to improve. Lets explore how to grow in our prayer lives.
The author of Hebrews gives us four things to do as Christians. Let us draw near to God, hold fast, stir up love and meet together encouraging each other.
The spiritual discipline of reading Scripture, or doing devotions, is a major influence on how we grow. 2 Timothy tells us that Scripture is profitable for teaching, reproof, correction, and training in righteousness.
As Christians, we want to emulate Jesus, but why is it that so often we don’t act the way he would? The solution to this problem is in our identity and our training. Peter tells us that we have been given a new identity by the righteousness of Jesus Christ. Because of our new identity, we are encouraged to practice new habits.
Jesus is the light of the world. As His followers, we are also called salt and light. Just as the children’s song says, we need to let our light shine in the darkness of this world.
The light of God’s word brings safety. it can keep us from falling, but it also tells us how to get back up if we do fall. It also gives guidance, enabling us to navigate this world. It also provides illumination as the Holy Spirit reveals wisdom in a way that is unique to each of us.
Light brings a feeling of warmth. Even when it is cold outside, the sight of the sun can bring a feeling of warmth with it. Jesus is the Light of the world. He does not reflect the light like the moon does. He is the source of light like the sun!
When the days are short, and it is the darkest time of the year, we do something interesting: we light everything up! God also brought light into the darkness in creation. He brought light forth simply by His word. The word of God is powerful, and the scale of His creation is immense. But He still wants to be involved in the smallest details in each of our lives. He wants to be able to exercise His creating power in our lives.
Quite often we get the feeling of joy and gratitude in reverse order. We think that if we are feeling joy that it will make us grateful. This is backwards. We need to be grateful first, no matter the circumstances, and the feelings of joy will follow.
Humans tend to notice the bad over the good. We tend to focus on the negative far more than the positive. We have all experience one negative word drowning out many positive words. Why is that? And how can we change our hearts so the negative doesn’t outweigh the positive as much?