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Posts Tagged ‘Colossians’

God has been doing this cool thing of restoring and redeeming a lot in my life that has been lost this past year. I love this passage from Joel 2:25 of God’s promise to restore those things that are lost in our trials when we are obedient to Him during those tough times. I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten. You see this in the life of Job as well when God restores him 10 fold for remaining in obedience while he is being tested. God has given me some amazing new friends to walk with, opportunities in ministry and blessings with my finances. He has also blessed me with a new church and a new community that is stronger than I have ever had before and I am thankful to be there. Yet at the same time, he has restored my old church to me that I left on no-so-good terms with last summer. It’s been awesome to return there and reconnect with old friends and serve from time to time. Plus my kids have really got connected in their respected youth groups there and I want them to keep going. Today, my old mentor and hero Ron Merrell spoke as a guest speaker there.  Colossians is one of my favorite books of the Bible and above is the video of his message. It was a great message on spiritual disciplines and how they keep us in tune with God.

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Yes… Jesus is attractive

We desire things that are attractive. We are drawn to things that look and feel great. Why do many people not desire to have Jesus in their life? I continue to rediscover my own joy in desiring God in my life, I asked the question to myself “Do I admire Jesus? Is he attractive enough for me?” Then I was hit with the fact that Jesus died for me. We hear that all the time. But that fact that I was worth dying for is huge. Kinda hard not desiring to get to know someone who was willing to die for me.

I’m reading Colossians 1. Here are 15 things from that chapter that make Jesus pretty desirable:

1. In him we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

2. He is the image of the invisible God

3. He is the firstborn of all creation.

4. For by him, all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities.

5. All things were created by him.

6. All things were created for him.

7. He is before all things.

8. In him all things hold together.

9. He is the head of the body, the church.

10. He is the beginning.

11. He is the firstborn from among the dead.

12. In everything he has the supremacy.

13. In him,God is pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him.

14. He reconciles all things, whether on earth or in heaven.

15. He makes peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

Sounds pretty attractive to me….

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Now you have Christ, walk in him   (Colossians 1:28, 2:6-7)

Charlie Hall led us in worship with “Marvelous Light”, then John Piper came out to speak. Wow, he was a hard one to follow. He talked about substitutionary atonement (Colossians 2:13-15, Romans 8:3) and “gutsy guilt” (Micah 7:8-9). God requires our sins to be punished and for us to be righteous. Faith fights our sins. After the main session, I went to a breakout on singleness. It was packed! Ben Stuart was the speaker for it and I was blown away by his approach to singleness. He called it an “Undistracted Devotion” to God and he spoke from 1 Corinthians 7.

He talked about how singleness is a gift from God and that sometimes marriage can be a distraction. We have more time to give to God and to serve. We are to set our minds on Christ. Is singleness more spiritual? (Matthew 19:11-12). It is a gift, but not for all of us. We shouldn’t be afraid to marry, but do it in the Lord. Do what fits – being single or married.

Afterwards, Ron got the whole Cornerstone group together to debrief how the whole week was going for each of us.

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I slept in this morning – I needed it. But I missed doing my devotions. Our room was crowed and we rotated sleeping on the floor. I was enjoying the guy time and the fellowship that comes with it. We went through Colossians 1:15-17 with our community groups. We discussed how we need to get back to the simplicity of God because we have created a westernized image of Christ. We forget he is the image of God. He is not detached from us and knows and understands what we are going through. After Matt Redman led worship during the morning session, Beth Moore spoke to us. She spoke from Philippians 2:1-11 on humility and how it is a unnatural quality that requires our pursuit. We are to model Christ’s humility and how he made himself nothing for us. Next was lunch. They had all 20,000 of us walk out the building and grab a box from Lenny’s sandwiches off a pallet. I was amazed how smooth it went. They must have an amazing partnership with this company for them to make this much food. Afterward, I went to a breakout session with Chris Hervertz from Word made Flesh. This organization raises awareness of the poor and helps gets people out on the field.

Feeding 20,000 students lunch

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We were able to get a big group of us together in a section as it was general seating. The lights went out and Charlie Hall opened with “Salvation is Here” and “Center”. The wait and anticipation was over and I was able to close my eyes and focus on Christ. They then switched to the screens to the Georgia World Congress Center where Chris Tomlin sang some songs. Louie Giglio came out and gave a message from Colossians 1:10-16. He focused on how Christ is the image of the invisible God and we are worthy to live a life for him because he rescued us.

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Afterwards, they had us go to community groups. Basically you are randomly placed in a large room with other Christians from other churches and small home groups are formed. These small groups are the people we are to do life with throughout the week after each main session. After group, a bunch of us walked around downtown Atlanta. We ended up back at the Landmark cafe where we stayed up till 5am.

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