The Test of Delay
Psalm 27:14 Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD. • October 1, 2017 • Jimmy Reyes
As we wait we will be tempted to take shortcuts or try to change our circumstances. See the story of Abraham and Sarah Genesis 12:1-4, 15:1-6, 16:1-6, 21:1-5 As we wait we need to remember: What God is doing in us is more important than the things we are waiting for.
The Test of Endurance
2 Corinthians 4:7-12 • September 24, 2017 • Bill Dwyer
Endurance in Greek is HUPOMONE Luke 21:19 Stand firm and you will win life. 2 Corinthians 4:7-12 But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may also be revealed in our mortal body. So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you.
The Test of Your Call
Ephesians 4:1 • September 17, 2017 • Bill Dwyer
2 Corinthians 5:9-10 So we make it our goal to please him, whether we are at home in the body or away from it. For we must all appear before the judgement seat of Christ, so that each of us may receive what is due us for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.
The Test of Failure
We are willing to admit many fears like snakes and spiders, but #1 fear is unspoken…FAILURE • September 10, 2017 • Bill Dwyer
We are willing to admit many fears like snakes and spiders, but #1 fear is unspoken…FAILURE We are bombarded with images of success that run counter to God’s ways Comparison is the root of all inferiority All of us go through the test of failure What does it feel like? Betrayal, hurt, hopelessness, grief, gripping anxiety, anger, rage, doubt, like you are fighting to survive, loss of a dream, loss of relationship, loss of income… Understand the process: FAILURE > REJECTION> SHAME It is the shame we fear so we react with fight or flight. How you define success defines YOU. Habits determine our character and character determines our destiny (see “You Are What You Love” – James K. A. Smith)
Becoming God's Hands
The Power of Touch - Luke 4:40 • August 6, 2017 • Bill Dwyer
Don’t be afraid to touch people. Recognize that people need touch. When the Spirit is moving, He will lead us to touch others. In the Old Testament we have Genesis 2:7ff Then the LORD formed a man from the dust of the ground…he took one of the man’s ribs and made a woman from the rib… In the Gospels: Jesus touched Peter’s mother-in-law He touched the blind man A woman touched His garment He touched the untouchables Luke 4:40 At sunset people brought to Jesus all who had various kinds of sickness, and laying His hands on each, He healed them.
The Test of Fire
When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. Psalm 43 • September 3, 2017 • Bill Dwyer
Psalm 43:2 WHEN. not if THROUGH. He wants you to get through the fire. TEST. A process intended to reveal the quality, performance, or reliability of something or someone before putting it into widespread use. An ordeal to see if you are the real deal! FIRE. It has transforming power. Pancake batter becomes pancakes! Romans 8:28 Water-based Christians: some believers cannot accept that a loving God would test us with fire. See Deuteronomy 4:24; Psalm 66:10; Hebrews 12:29; Matthew 3:11 and John 15:5-6.
The Test of Faith
Throughout our lives we all experience storms that test our faith. • August 27, 2017 • Jimmy Reyes
Mark 4:35-41 (NIV) Throughout our lives we will all experience storms that will test our faith. Storms come because we live in a __fallen__world. Storms come because of our own__sin____. Storms come because we have an evil _enemy_who wants to destroy us. The storms of life reveal our own nature. Hebrews 11:1,6 We may be living with __false____assumptions. We may be living with a lack of ___faith/trust______. The storms of life reveal the nature of God. In the midst of the storm, we can experience his _presence_ in the midst of the storm we can experience his _correction__ in the midst of the storm we can experience his _love__ What are some of the false assumptions you have struggled with in regards to the character and nature of God? In what areas of your life are you tempted to respond with fear rather than faith? What valuable lessons have you learned from past storms? Take a few moments of silence and ask God why faith is so important and pleasing to him.