Allen Iverson once famously used poor grammar to say, “We talking about practice!” He was a great point guard who played for the Philadelphia 76ers throughout the 1990’s and early 2000’s. He was getting questioned by reporters on why he missed a practice. He took offense to the questions in the press conference saying the game is all that matters and y’all got me here talking about practice!
Unity and maturity go hand in hand as the church is built up and attains the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. As a kid, I always thought growing up, which to me meant getting older, corresponded with becoming more mature. As an adult, I’ve learned that growing up doesn’t mean getting older. Growing up is about maturity.
Notice how Paul says he is a prisoner for the Lord. It is believed Paul is in prison in Rome when he writes this letter to the church in Ephesus. What puts Paul in prison is living the life he describes. Living a life worthy of the calling he received. Does your life resemble the loving Word of God that called you to administer God’s grace in the world?
As a staff, we met to pray for every young man and woman going through confirmation by name at the start of their journey. Then, we all picked names at random whom we each individually prayed for throughout their 10-week discipleship experience. Our prayer for the confirmands was a modified version of this prayer that Paul prays for the church in Ephesus.
Do you enjoy reading a good mystery book? Or watching a mystery show or movie? I remember growing up watching Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! In the show, Scooby, a Great Dane, Fred, Shaggy, Daphne, and Velma, all team up to investigate a mystery. Usually what appears to be a ghost or another kind of paranormal activity causes enough fear or harm in a town that warrants the investigation of the aforementioned team.
As a consequence of the cross of Christ, a new humanity is created. Every barrier is broken. There are no human conditions or limitations that can keep us from entering into fellowship with God as He has made a way for us all to be united with Him.
Today’s text is dense. If you find yourself confused, I promise you are not alone. We will be unpacking this text in great detail in our message this weekend. There is a great deal here that addresses the unique challenges and needs of the Christian community that is still in its formative stage in the first century.
I decided to look up the word intervention today. I don’t think I need one and I’m not planning at this time to participate in one. I looked it up because according to Ephesians 2:4, we have received one.
The other day while browsing through my photo library, I came across some old videos of our kids on Christmas morning. One of those is of my son when he was two years old playing with the tiny basketball goal that Santa brought him that year.
Next week, we will read the prayer Paul offers at the end of Ephesians chapter 3. I have encouraged you to use that prayer many times before to pray for others. Most recently, we invited our entire congregation and the parents of the 6th graders in our spring Confirmation class to pray that for each of those young men and women.
If you had the choice between visiting the beach or going to the mountains this summer, which would you choose? I am guessing that if we did a survey, there would probably be an even split between the two.
In our First 15 readings these next four weeks, we will be reading through the entirety of Ephesians together. This past weekend we started our message series focused on this letter Paul writes to the Christians living in Ephesus, one of the largest trading centers in the first century.
In 1966, President Lyndon B. Johnson established the third Sunday of June as Father’s Day. I want to share a little bit with you about my Dad. Before becoming a pastor, my father was a beat reporter for the Chicago City News Bureau. Seeing a great deal of pain and injustice, my dad developed a passion for working to change systems that were unjust.
Peter wanted to know how often a person was supposed to forgive a repeat offender. Jesus answers with the figure 77, which in other versions of the New Testament is listed as 70 x 7 or 490. I think the point is don’t keep count. The wild number that Jesus responded with was his way of saying that we muddle the healing process if we take time to calculate the number of times we are legally
One of the truly classic episodes of “The Andy Griffith Show” is called: The Sermon For Today. A traveling preacher from a big city delivers a sermon at Mayberry’s All Soul's Church encouraging the members to slow down and enjoy life. He encourages the folks to remember the simpler pleasures of the past when folks would leisurely gather together for a concert in the park.