"It's pretty interesting that the most powerful possession that I have in my life, and I'll tell you if you knew my wife, it is the most powerful possession that I have in my life is this little ring that goes on this finger of this hand. And every time I see this ring, I remember a promise of, you know, over three decades ago and the woman that I promised it to."

Family Discussions:

  1. What right did Jesus have to be able to make a covenant with God on your behalf?
  2. How does this teaching this morning changed your view of the last supper or the communion, a meal that you take at Church?
  3. Only after the covenant meal were able to the two covenant partners able to call each other their friends. And so if that is true now, who is Jesus to you?

Transcription:

00:13 You know, it's pretty interesting that the most powerful possession that I have in my life, and I'll tell you if you knew my wife, it is the most powerful possession that I have in my life is this little ring that goes on this finger of this hand. And every time I see this ring, I remember a promise of, you know, over three decades ago and the woman that I promised it to. This ring is the sign of a covenant that I made with her. And that ring, uh, reminds me that that is the only girl in my life. And Hebrews Chapter eight verses 10 through 12 talks about an even more powerful covenant than this. It says this in verse 10, "For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel. After those days, says the Lord, I will put my laws into their minds and I will write them upon their hearts and I will be their God and they will be my people.

01:09 And they shall not teach everyone his fellow citizen saying to his brother, know the Lord for all will know me from the least to the greatest of them. For I will be merciful to their iniquities and their sins. I will remember no more." This is about the new covenant and to set it up, I gotta tell you that in Bible history, the strongest agreement between two people wasn't a handshake. It wasn't giving an oath. It wasn't even a written contract. The strongest agreement ever known in the history of the world was when two people, two tribes, two nations made a covenant between each other. And these are the guidelines that made that covenant the most binding agreement ever made. First of all, the two parties would exchange coats and when they would exchange their coat, they would say to each other, I'm taking all your needs upon myself and you're taking all my needs upon yourself.

02:07 Then the two parties would exchange weapons. They would exchange swords saying, if you ever have an enemy, he's my enemy too. And then the two covenant partners would cut their pumps or they would cut their risks and then they would shake hands and they would literally rub their blood into each other. And when they did that, they were saying, my life is yours and your life is mine. And then next the two would rub dye into the wounds. So the scar would always be noticeable and, and that scar would be a sign that the covenant was binding forever. And then next the pair had come up with split an animal, a rock down the backbone and they would walk in a figure eight pattern between the halves of the animal. And as they walk together through the halves of the animal, they would say to each other, if I ever break this covenant, may God do this to me and worse.

02:57 And then the two would a covenant meal. They would share the bread and they would share the fruit of the vine together. And by doing this they were saying, if you ever have a need, I will automatically meet that need. The bread would be a symbol of my body. The drink would be a symbol of my blood. And then the two were one, and then they would call each other friends. You know what? When God made a covenant with Abraham, he made the Jewish nation, his chosen people. The Jews based their side of the Covenant on keeping the law. God declared that on his side of the Covenant was his love for his people. But folks, when Jesus died on the cross, he literally cut a covenant between you and God. And it was based on grace and grace alone. The scars in his hands are signs that he has made an unbreakable agreement between you and God, that you are his forever.

03:56 And when he shared the last supper, when they shared, you know, the bread and the wine, it was a forever reminder that his incredibly, amazingly divine act of love, of his sacrificial love would be the sign of the covenant forever. Isn't that awesome? So here's my question for you today. What right did Jesus have to be able to make a covenant with God on your behalf? And then how does this teaching this morning changed your view of the last supper or the communion, a meal that you take at Church? And then lastly, only after the covenant meal were able to the two covenant partners able to call each other their friends. And so if that is true now, who is Jesus to you?

"I love my church and I love my pastor and every church needs a pastor needs a leader. Uh, but have you ever wondered when you're, you know, at a wedding ceremony or you're in your church, why, you know, your pastor or leader wears a big beautiful, you know, robe? "

Family Discussions:

  1. Discuss the role of your church leader. Who is he? What is he and what does he not?
  2. Why does Jesus not need any man to connect you to God?
  3. Why is he completely sufficient to be your high priest?
  4. How does Jesus qualify to be the link between you and God?

Transcription:

00:14 Hey, I love my church and I love my pastor and every church needs a pastor needs a leader. Uh, but have you ever wondered when you're, you know, at a wedding ceremony or you're in your church, why, you know, your pastor or leader wears a big beautiful, you know, robe? Well this passage, they said something about that. It's Hebrews Chapter Seven and just verses 25 through 28 and it talks about the real priest and here's what it says. "Therefore, since we are able also to save forever, those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them, for it was fitting for us to have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens who does not need daily like those high priests to offer up sacrifices for, for his own sins.

01:14 And then for the sins of the people. Because he did once for all when he offered up himself." Of course it's talking about Jesus. The priest of all. "For the law appoints men, as high priests who are weak with the word of an oath, which came after the law appoints a son made perfect forever." You may want to get your Bible and read that passage over a couple of times. You know, some do wore coats and some wear ties and some wear, you know, long black robes and that's okay. And some wear shorts with neatly pressed, you know, white round collars, some appear in shirtsleeves and some have ultra fancy colors in their attire. I just tell my pastor to tuck his shirt tail in, you know, some are PhDs, some are doctors of divinity, some are bishops, cardinals, pastors, preachers, teachers or fathers. You know, one's called the pope, one's the president of a large association of churches.

02:09 One as a church of 20,000 people. One has 52 members, but no matter what their title, and again, I look up to our church leaders, but no matter what their title, no matter what their attire, they only have one thing in common. They're all men. They're all men. They're all born of the flesh and they'll all die in the flesh without Christ, none are divine in and of ourselves. None can go to God alone, all go to God the same way you and I go to God, we all approach God directly on the avenue of faith, paved by the sacrificial blood shed on a Roman cross on a hill called Golgotha by the one the only, the supreme, the divide, the one for all the sufficient high priest named Jesus. Whether you're Protestant, Catholic, evangelical, charismatic American, African, Asian, European, Indian. You know, we all go to God the same way.

03:12 The same way is Billy Graham went to God the same way that the pope went to God. We all go to God. In Jesus's name, we go directly. We all need churches, but we don't need a church to pray. We all need church leaders, but we don't need a church leader to pray. We love our prayer books, but we don't need a prayer book to pray. All we need is Jesus to pray. All we need is to go sincerely reverently with faith in Jesus' name. Hebrews is clear. He is our high priest. He is our intercessor for God. He is our guide to the throne of God himself. And here's some great discussion questions. If you're with somebody to study with, and I hope you're doing these with your family, discuss the role of your church leader. Who is he? What is he and what does he not? Yeah. And then secondly, why does Jesus not need any man to connect you to God? Why is he completely sufficient to be your high priest? And then lastly, how does Jesus qualify to be the link between you and God?

"We look back at the century that proceeded the 20th first century. We looked back at the 50 some of us that are old like me, and it was an age of rock and roll. And then we see the 60s is a decade of drugs. The 70s were the decade of hard rock. The 80's the decade of acid rock and punk rock. But the 90's those of us who remember, uh, it was the, it was the decade where the public learned that lying has no consequences."

Family Discussions:

  1. Why does God hate lying?
  2. Why is telling the truth so vital in good family relationships?
  3. What do you and I need to do just as far as confessing our sins for lies that have been told?
  4. How do we need to turn that around and become a dad, become a mom to become a friend who always tells the truth?

Transcription:

00:14 If there's one, three letter word, it has to be the most hated word in all the English languages, it's this one. But there's another side of the coin of this word and the other side of the coin is a word that people love more in relationships than any other. The word of truth. And I want to tell you about that truth today. We're in Hebrews chapter six verses 13 through 18. Listen to this. This is awesome. "For when God made the promise to Abraham, since he could swear by no one greater, he swore by himself" Isn't that great? "I will surely bless you and I will surely multiply you. If so, having patiently waited, he obtained the promise for men swear by one greater than themselves and with them an oath given as confirmation is an end to every dispute. In the same way, God desiring even more to show to the heirs of promise, the unchangeableness of his power interest post with an oath so that by two unchangeable things in which is impossible for God to lie in which it is impossible for God to lie.

01:18 We who have taken refuge would have strong encouragement to take hold of the hope that is set before us." This is one thing that's impossible for God. And you know, always, we look back at the century that proceeded the 20th first century. We looked back at the 50 some of us that are old like me, and it was an age of rock and roll. And then we see the 60s is a decade of drugs. The 70s were the decade of hard rock. The 80's the decade of acid rock and punk rock. But the 90's those of us who remember, uh, it was the, it was the decade where the public learned that lying has no consequences. We turned on our television and we'd see the famous trials of the great football player who won the Heisman trophy and then we'd see the trials of a president who was caught in, lies with ladies that worked for him and, and you, and you know what?

02:11 These were our heroes. Our nation's heroes in athletics, in politics that we could watch for hours on CNN and Fox and look directly into the camera and through the mouths of their attorneys tell lie after lie and bend truth to the breaking point. And, you know, we thought, man, if our leaders can lie, you know, why are we bound to tell the truth. And folks, before you point your fingers too much at those two people look in the mirror and, you know, we could see the same thing happening in us. I can't point the finger and I hope you can't either, but you know what, in a relationship where love really matters if you don't have trust, you know, you don't have anything. You know what I trust my wife and my kids, you know, and they trust me, you know, they're my best friends and our family sticks together like glue because there's trust in our family.

03:08 You know, I know when I look into their eyes that I could see trust personified. You know, I trust them with everything I've got, you know, uh, when we've had problems, you know, in this area, in our relationship, maybe we've corrected them and then we moved on. Because without truth that a family, a family doesn't have a family, you know, and by the grace of God, that's why our family's tight. Integrity is in everything. Secondly, man, you know, God is our only true hero in if he sets the standard for truth, you know, he could build or destroy the universe with a word. He could mold a man out of, out of a lump of clay and he can mold a woman out of that man's rib but there's one thing that God cannot do and you can do anything but God cannot lie.

03:55 And when he says your sins are forgiven, you can take it to the bank. When he says you're his child. You can bet your life on him. When he says that he has a wonderful plan for your life and you can count on it. You know, there are 8,000 promises in the Bible for you as a child of God. And all 8,000 are coming and will come true. He gave his son to prove that he gave his son to prove that he's a person of his word. You know what? And telling the truth is our response to that, the most incredible truth ever told. And here is the questions for the day. Why does God hate lying? Why is telling the truth so vital in good family relationships? And then the last question today is what do you and I need to do just as far as confessing our sins for lies that have been told? And then how do we need to turn that around and become a dad, become a mom to become a friend who always tells the truth?

"I got to tell you about my mom. She is in a class all her own. Never have I known a woman, so consistently serving, so consistently encouraging, so consistently saying with her big, broad Texas smile, "Hey, what can I do for you?" If you ever met someone like that?"

Family Discussion:

  1. What are you going to do with the cell phone that connects you directly to God's throne of grace?

Transcription:

00:14 Hey, what would you do if you had a cell phone? And every time you open the lid, it was God on the other end. Would you use it very often if God was listening every time you picked up the phone? Well, Hebrews chapter four verse 14 through 16 says something about that, and here's what scripture says, "Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the son of God, let us hold fast our confession for we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who has been tempted in all things as we are and yet without sin. Therefore, therefore, therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace. Therefore, let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need."

01:11 What a great passage! And speaking of greatness, I got to tell you about my mom. She is in a class all her own. Never have I known a woman, so consistently serving, so consistently encouraging, so consistently saying with her big, broad Texas smile, "Hey, what can I do for you?" If you ever met someone like that? And you know, on the other side of the coin, we know one of my brothers and I used to swear that she had eyes in the back of her head and ears, like a deer in the forest. You know, with puzzled smiles on our mischievous faces. You know, we call her Sherlock Holmes behind her back because man, that woman knew everything. She could tell us before we try to do something sneaky and exactly just what it was we were trying to get by. We couldn't fool my mom in anything.

01:59 But mom's goal was simply this, do whatever it took to serve her family and to raise good boys. You know, I know some days she had to wonder if we're even gonna make it. But she was an amazing shadow of the god for whom I would someday grow to marvel. You know, in his word it points out my shortcomings. He corrects my false, he strengthens, you know, my weaknesses. And if I've ever tried to rationalize a wrong, my daily Bible study quickly sets, you know, my feet back on track. You know, God's intentions are simple. Just be, just be like my son and do what he would do. And then you, you turn the pages and you see God's great big father's lap. You see his shoulder to crown, you see our refuge in a storm. You see our confidant in a time of trouble.

02:50 You know, you see his constant guidance at a time of question. You see confident access, confident access in a time of need. He keeps me from falling on my face. He's there to pick me up when I don't listen well, you know, and with Jesus in your heart with the guidance of his word in your life, it's like being a blind man and having a seeing eye dog without a flaw. With Jesus as your Lord. You can go straight to God and you can open your heart to him in prayer. Like there's only one phone line and there's never a busy signal. My question for you is this today, if indeed it's true, and I believe with all my heart in dozens of places, scripture says, call upon me and I will answer you. Ask for anything in my name and I will give it to you, whatever you ask the father in my name, Jesus says, I will give to you if you ask according to God's will, if that is true, what are you going to do with the cell phone that connects you directly to God's throne of grace?

"I made this Bible about 20 something years ago out of a piece of pigskin and some leather from Tandy leather company and glued it to a New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs. And it's been following me around in my hip pocket ever since."

Family Discussion:

  1. Describe the two edges of the sword of the word of God.
  2. Why is God's word the greatest offensive weapon that we've got as we're under the attack by the enemy all day, every day?
  3. Make some kind of a commitment to make to the word and what you're going to do with this word daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly basis in your life.

Transcription:

00:14 Man, I hope that you're having half the fun of watching these and doing these devotionals as I am getting to share them with you and if I can only do two with you, I'd want to do the one today and the one that we get to do together tomorrow. In Hebrews chapter four, verse 12, it says this, "For the word of God is living and active sharper than any two edged sword. Its piercing his for is the division of both soul and spirit of both joint and marrow enabled to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart." You know what? I made this Bible about 20 something years ago out of a piece of pigskin and some leather from Tandy leather company and glued it to a New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs. And it's been following me around in my hip pocket ever since.

01:03 And if there was only one thing that could be saved in a fire, it would surely be this. People would be first and my pets would be second. But I'd saved this of all the possessions that I have. But after that for sure. But truly, seriously in eternity. Nothing really else matters except this the word of God and I'm thankful to Dr. Howard Hendricks for some time that I got to spend with Dr. Hendricks by listening to him on tape, believe it or not, years ago. And he changed my view forever about the word of God. It's living and active and sharper than any two edged sword. Dr. Hendricks says, the Bible will come alive to you when you read it patiently. When you take your time, when you read the book, prayerfully, when you pray, before you read, during the time you read and after you read, when you read the Bible imaginatively, when you go into the jail with Paul, when he's writing the Philippians or the Ephesians or the Galatians, you imagine what it was like in that jail. The stench and the smell and what it was like to be chained to the praetorian guard that you go to Calvary with Christ.

02:10 That you go to Golgotha and you experience, what it was like around that cross as Christ poured out his life for you. You read it, imaginatively it, and then he said your rent possessively you read it to own it. You read it to put it in your heart, you read it intentionally, you read it to change your life. And then Dr. Henderson talked about, not only reading it patiently and reading it possessively and reading it imaginatively but he said, read it like a love letter. And that's the one that changed it the most for me. That when you go to the word of God, you read it like the greatest love letter you've ever gotten in your life. And I remember back in high school when I first started getting love letters from, you know, high school girlfriends. Don't tell my wife. And how you just pour over those love letters, every word dear.

02:59 Why did he say dearest love? Why did she say Love yah? You know how love letters are, but it's what it is. It's a love letter from God. And then he said, read it like the first time. Read it like you've never been there before. You've read John Three 16 a thousand times. But today when you read it, read it like you've never seen it before. For God so love the world. That's awesome. That he gave his only son that whoever believes in him would not perish but have everlasting life. Go there like as a first time of your life. Go there like it's a gold mine because that's exactly what it is. And here's my questions for you today. Describe the two edges of the sword of the word of God and why is God's word the greatest offensive weapon that we've got as we're under the attack by the enemy all day, every day? And then lastly, make some kind of a commitment, maybe even right now of what you're going to do, a different commitment you're going to make to the word and what you're going to do with this word daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly basis in your life.

04:10 And if you do scripture promise and I promise that it will change your life in everything you do.

"I got to coach football at Texas A and M. One of my heroes, Gene Stallings. I ask him one time, I said, coach, when he was with the cowboys, he said, coach, what is the best football season of your life? He said, well, it had to be the cowboys in 1975. And looking back that far back over his shoulder, I said, coach, what was so special about that team?"

Family Discussion:

  1. What is it about encouragement that enhances our lives?
  2. How does encouragement, especially to somebody in your family, show that person or family to face of Jesus and how can encourage them literally transform this home that you're in today?

Transcription:

00:13 Hey if you ever been amazed as I have every day by the power of a hug, the power of a sincere handshake by the power of a little birthday card or just a little love note dropped in a lunchbox before one of our children goes off to school. This verse, if I have a favorite, this is certainly one of them. It's Hebrews chapter three, verse 13 and 14. I think it's the most powerful verse on Relationship Building in a business, in a family, in a home, that I've ever seen. Hebrews three, 13 and 14, and it says this, "But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called today so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. For we have become partakers of Christ if we hold fast the beginning of our assurance and hold it firm unto the end." You know, I got to coach football.

01:12 at Texas A and M. As I've probably shared before and one of my heroes, Gene Stallings was telling me after all of his years in coaching of coaching the National Championship, Alabama Crimson Tides. Coaching the Dallas cowboys, the Arizona Cardinals, and the Texas Aggies. I ask him one time, I said, coach, when he was with the cowboys, he said, coach, what is the best football season of your life? He said, well, it had to be the cowboys in 1975. And looking back that far back over his shoulder, I said, coach, what was so special about that team? He said, well, 12 rookies made the team and, and we took them to the playoffs. And I said, how'd you do it? And he said, "our goal that year was to encourage every player socks off. Our goal that year was to make every player feel good about themselves."

01:59 And you know, what, if it works with 300 pound defensive tackles, how much more will it work with 12 year old boys going through the pains of junior high? You know if it works with guys who get bored by counting money by the thousands of dollars, how much more with a mom who works her heart out all day, every day as a household executive or a dad, who pours it out at the office all day long, or a mom sometimes who are having to do both to bring home the Bacon and keep the bank account from going barren. How much more to a daughter who's going through the pains of adolescents? Man, y'all encouragement puts you on your tippy toes. Encouragement makes you smile. Encouragement is the powerful wrench that pulls you out of the quicksand of the doldrums of depression or the stages of perceived insignificance. "That a boy! I'm proud of you, son! Way to go, dad! Super job, Young Lady! Wow, that was amazing! You're awesome! I love you! You make me so happy when you're around. I'm so lucky to have someone like you in my life. Hey, hold that pose for a minute while I called sports illustrated to take a picture of that.

03:16 There's a million ways to encourage somebody. You can write it, you can say it or you can just smile it. It's the greatest gift you can give. Let me ask you this. What is it about encouragement that enhances our lives? And how does encouragement, especially to somebody in your family, show that person or family to face of Jesus and how can encourage them literally transform this home that you're in today?

"To my grandsons and I, snowboarding for them and for me, blazing speed, a top, freshly packed powder on a beautiful Colorado mountain slope, with, you know, Burton boots and, and snowboards under our feet is truly the ultimate father, son, father, grandson, grand dad, grandson, experience."

Family Discussion:

  1. Would you describe for me what emotions and thoughts this amazing word from God's word brings to your heart today? 
  2. This love was described today, what response does it bring about in you?

Transcription:

00:14 You know, the book of Hebrews is just amazing. Every page is just awesome. But if you're like me, you have to just pour yourself into this book. Sometimes over and over again to pull out all the golden nuggets that are in the pages. Today we're looking at Hebrews two, verses eight and nine, and it says this, "You have put all things in subjection under his feet. For in subjecting all things to him, he left nothing that is not subject to him. But now we do not yet see all things subjected to him. But we do see him who was made for a little while lower than the angels, namely Jesus because of the suffering and death crowned with glory and honor. So that by the grace of God, he might taste death for everyone." You know, to my grandsons and I, snowboarding for them and for me, blazing speed, a top, freshly packed powder on a beautiful Colorado mountain slope, with, you know, Burton boots and, and snowboards under our feet is truly the ultimate father, son, father, grandson, grand dad, grandson, experience.

01:30 And then, you know, what a joining a team of players who played way over our head, sometimes upsetting a nationally ranked football team and in a postseason bowl game. You know, one time on national television, you know, a midst a dome packed with screaming fans certainly was one of the greatest sports experiences, you know, in my memory. It was the ultimate in football for us at least. And but then even more so walking my daughter in beautiful white lace down a forest green wedding carpet with roses and candles, glistening and then placing her hand in the trustworthy grasp of her dear knight in shining armor who cherishes her more than he does his own life. It was the ultimate relationship experience. And then even more than that, for me, gazing into my dear wife's sparkling brown eyes. A glow from the reflection of the, of the candles on our 37th anniversary cake.

02:31 And seeing in those eyes more than a quarter of a century of respect, of admiration, of mountains climbed together, of dreams dreamed together. Heartbeats melded together is definitely the ultimate marriage experience for me. But of all the ultimate's, of all the greats, of all the amazings, ever realized or imagine on this earth, none can even begin to compare to the ultimate humility displayed by when he, the one to whom belongs all things. The one in whom is hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge, the one who literally holds all things together by the word of his power, the one to whom God subjected everything in all creation, the one to whom every knee one day will bow. This man Jesus, Lord . Humbled himself. Sacrificed himself for one reason and one reason only because God would rather die for you than the live for eternity without you. Folks, this is ultimate love. That is ultimate selflessness. That my friends is ultimate humility. And here's the questions today. Would you describe for me what emotions and thoughts this amazing word from God's word brings to your heart today? And the second question is, this love was described today. What response does it bring about in you.

"Hey to tour the Sistine chapel in Rome, with literally hundreds of one of accounting masterpieces of Michelangelo painted with intricate precision for the marveling eyes of the world to see. God, the creation, Jesus, the early saints of the faith. Definitely some of the world's true great wonders. And then to see the ornate wonderland there is to see the very mind of perhaps the greatest painter of all time. The beholder is never the same."

Family Discussion:

  1. How does knowing Jesus teach us so much about the heart of God himself?
  2. What are some characteristics of this man named Jesus that causes you to marvel at the nature of God?

Transcription:

00:13 I'm so excited to share the scripture with you today. It is definitely one of my favorites. If you want a little piece of scripture to hide in your heart, that'll come back and smile at you all day long. This is a great place to start. We're in the book of Hebrews Chapter One verses one through four and it says this, listen to this. This is awesome. "God, after he spoke long ago to the fathers and the prophets in many portions and in many ways in these last days has spoken to us in his son whom he appointed heir of all things through whom also he made the world and he is the radiance of his glory and the exact representation of his nature and upholds all things by the word of power. When he had made purification for our sins, he sat down at the right hand of the majesty on high, having become as much better than the angels, as he has inherited a more excellent name than they." The radiance of His glory.

01:13 Hey to tour the Sistine chapel in Rome, with literally hundreds of one of accounting masterpieces of Michelangelo painted with intricate precision for the marveling eyes of the world to see. God, the creation, Jesus, the early saints of the faith. Definitely some of the world's true great wonders. And then to see the ornate wonderland there is to see the very mind of perhaps the greatest painter of all time. The beholder is never the same. The experience is one that lingers in your mind for a lifetime. And then on the other side of the world, you know to watch, you know, Duke basketball, you know in the late nineties and the 21st century final four appearance after final four back to back, you know, national championships is to see the best in basketball coaching. The Maestro is perhaps the greatest basketball coach since John Wooden of UCLA.

02:14 Coach K they call Mike Shashefski. The man is a true genius. And to see a Shashefski team is to see an intricately knitted heirloom. Five players performing perfectly as one heartbeat. Trust, faith, fluidity, and precision. He painted across the canvas of the hardwood floor on which they play. A 60 minute Duke UNC performance as a portrait for the mind of its creator. And then to see the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra and to set your receiving ears a drift in the sea of perfectly harmonized and synchronize artists in their instruments is to experience a musical paradise. Woodwind, strings, bass, percussion, all flowing like a Hawaiian wave into the seashore of our minds. The beautiful misur, and it's tiny baton. Every minute of movement communicating exact instructions to Viola to second chair, piccolo, third chair, kettle drums, xylophone. To experience such an event in Carnegie Hall with Misur is to see a glimpse of the conductor whose expertise would be proudly enshrine with the likes of Beethoven, Muck, Bach and Mendelssohn.

03:25 And then to see a Maui sunset. A star blazed nighttime sky from a top Mount Kilimanjaro, or to see Niagara Falls, multicolored rainbow strewn in the fog of early spring is to see the strokes of the brush of the creator of the universe. But so much more to look into the eyes of a meek, gentle, compassionate, 33 year old man hanging willfully on a Roman cross, crushed by the burdens and the sins of a fallen world is to see into the heart of the all Mighty One. The omnipotent one. The unfailing one who loves you so much that he couldn't bear the thought of spending eternity without you. My question for you today is this, how does knowing Jesus teach us so much about the heart of God himself? And what are some characteristics of this man named Jesus that causes you to marvel at the nature of God?

"The sisters of charity, the story goes, were invited by the president of Mexico to open a home in Mexico City. All of the years of the sisters that they visited in the outskirts of the city were extremely poor, but the requests of the people surprised the sisters very much."

Family Discussion:

  1. Who can you think about in this world in which we live?

Transcription:

00:13 Today I'm excited to share with you from a little bitty book with a whole lot of truth. It's the book of Philemon. It's one chapter and it's verse four through six and it says this, "I thank my God always making mention of you in my prayers because I hear of your love and of the faith which you have towards the Lord Jesus and toward all the saints, and I pray that the fellowship of your faith may become effective. That the fellowship of your faith may become effective through the knowledge of every good thing which is in you for Christ's sake." The sisters of charity, the story goes, were invited by the president of Mexico to open a home in Mexico City. All of the years of the sisters that they visited in the outskirts of the city were extremely poor, but the requests of the people surprised the sisters very much.

01:05 The first thing they asked for was not clothes, medicines or food. They only said, "Sisters, talk to us about God." You know, once Mother Teresa picked up a small girl who was wandering the streets, lost. Hunger was written all over her face. Who knows how long it had been since she'd eat anything. Mother Teresa offered her a piece of bread. The little girl started eating it, crumb by crumb. Mother Teresa told her, "Eat, eat the bread. Aren't you hungry?" The little girl looked up and told her, "Yeah, but I'm just afraid that when I run out of bread, I'll still be hungry." You know, Jesus died on the cross for us. Comes to us and yet sometimes we refuse to welcome him. He comes in the broken bodies of the poor. He comes in the hunger of those who have no food.

01:54 He comes to the naked bodies of the ones who have no clothes. He comes in the lonely hearts when there's no one to offer them love. You know, we've placed our trust and faith of Jesus because he's given everything for us. But when we share that faith not only in words but also in how we live. When our faith become an active faith, one lived out because of our love for Jesus. You know, man, we get to pray and to ask God to show us how our faith can be active. You know, in this letter of Philemon, Paul asked Philemon to live out his faith by forgiving Onesimus and accepting him as he would accept Paul himself. God might ask us to feed that little girl who's hungry or to listen and share with someone who desperately needs a friend.

02:40 He might ask us to encourage someone or even begin a Bible study at our workplace or in school. You know, faith in order to be genuine has to be generous and giving. Love and faith go hand in hand like peanut butter and Jelly. And our faith will be lived out when we see others as Jesus saw them. And to love them in the same way that Jesus would love them. And here's a couple of questions for you to think about and maybe share it with your family today. Who can you think about in this world in which we live? It may be down in Haiti, right off the Florida coast, or maybe in Africa, maybe in an inner city neighborhood, or maybe in your school, who liked that little girl needs a piece of bread from Jesus. It may be bread. It may be a gift, or it may be a great big hug. The joy of following Christ is to share his love with somebody else.

"I have an old friend named Dan Roberts, and he has got to be one of the most wonderful men I've ever met in my life. Dan also is very talented with the guitar and a great singer and a great songwriter. Dan was pointed out as the number one cowboy singer in the country and took that trophy home and all of his humility."

Family Discussion:

  1. Is there a person that you know that needs to understand that one simple truth? 

Transcription:

00:14 You know what's so neat about scripture to me? Well, there's a lot of things that are neat about scripture to me, but one of them is just how much gigantic truth there is in some tiny little places. Titus is just a little bitty book, but man, it is packed with incredible truth from God. Today we're in Titus chapter three verses three through eight, and it says this, "For we also once we're foolish ourselves, disobedient, deceived in slave to various lust and pleasures. Spending our life in malice and envy, hateful, hating one another. But when the kindness of God, our savior and his love for mankind appeared, he saved us. Not on the basis of the deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to his great mercy by the washing and the regeneration and the renewing of the Holy Spirit." I have an old friend named Dan Roberts, and he has got to be one of the most wonderful men I've ever met in my life.

01:15 Dan also is very talented with the guitar and a great singer and a great songwriter. Dan was pointed out as the number one cowboy singer in the country and took that trophy home and all of his humility. And I'm sure to the joy of his wife and kids. But Dan wrote country music with Garth Brooks and he toured with Garth for a few years. And one time Dan and Garth, who are great friends, were out on Garth's farm and Dan said, "you know what, Garth?" He said, "Grace is getting what we don't deserve and mercy is not getting what we do deserve." And that simple line, "Grace is getting what we don't deserve and mercy is not getting what we do deserve." Burned a hole in Garth Brooks' heart. A few years later, Garth did a compilation CD of all the greatest songs that he'd ever written and on that CD,

02:07 It was dedicated to that one idea and he wrote it on the compilation package that summarized his life. Grace is getting what we don't deserve and mercy is not getting what we do deserve. Isn't that great? You ought to write that down somewhere. Maybe stick it on the mirror of your dresser or your bathroom. And you know what folks? I'll tell you the joy of my life is all over this country on football fields, in football locker rooms, at basketball courts and basketball locker rooms, professional baseball, colleges, high schools. I get to share that with players. And it is just the most awesome thing in the world. In fact, this morning I was sharing that same truth with a group of, of men and women at a prayer breakfast. And I just watched that simple concept change lives and watch men and women come to the cross.

03:01 I've literally seen an entire prison, 1400 inmates, transform from the warden to the guards. To the inmates across that prison. Completely revolutionized and transformed by that one thing that's transformed my life. And I'm sure if it hasn't, it will transform yours. The grace of God is getting what we don't deserve and the mercy of God is not getting what we do deserve. And my question for you today is this: Is there somebody, maybe that person is the person you're looking at in the mirror right now. Is there a person that you know that needs to understand that one simple truth? That grace is getting what we don't deserve and mercy is not getting what we deserve. And if you can think of that person and it may be your own heart, share with that person today.

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