Topic: Sunday Message Verse: John 17:3
We are a community of grace and truth inviting people to know and follow Jesus.
John 17:3 NIV
Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.
A Word About Following
With the idea of “following” (whether it’s our hearts, our dreams; a person, a philosophy; a diet plan; an investment strategy, or anything else), when we follow someone or something, it determines: (1) the direction we’re headed in life; (2) the decisions we make along the way; (3) the destination we eventually want to get to. Our direction, our decisions, and our destination all come into play when we follow someone or something.
Luke 9:23 NIV
Then he said to them all: "Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.
A Disciple of Jesus
Following Jesus is a call to a life of self-denial, suffering, and surrender. It's giving control over to Him saying "Not my will but Yours be done."
Luke 9:24-25 NIV
For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it. What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit their very self?
It's Worth It
Jesus assures us that following Him is worth it. If we try to control our lives and follow our own dreams apart from God, we will miss out on all we thought we'd find. But if we "lose our lives" for Him, we end up experiencing the life our heart has been looking for.
Psalm 37:4 NIV
Take delight in the lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.
We're Not Alone
While following Jesus is hard, it is possible. God gives us His Holy Spirit to overcome the resistance of our internal selfishness, and He gives us His church to overcome the opposition of our external culture.
We come to Christ individually; we grow in Christ together.
Following Jesus Together
Five shared experiences as a church: (1) Worship; (2) Learn; (3) Connect: (4) Serve; (5) Go
Colossians 3:1-2 NIV
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.
Luke 6:40 NIV
The student is not above the teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like their teacher.
Hebrews 10:24-25 NIV
And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
1 Peter 4:10 NIV
Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God's grace in its various forms.
Matthew 28:19-20 NIV
Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age."