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Monday, September 14, 2009

Monday Morning App: The Glory of God in Christ

I am experimenting with asking a few people present for the sermon to share how the sermon challenged them. I'm hoping this may develop into a regular thing from multiple people. I'm hoping, too, that others reading these comments will be challenged to engage the sermons (written or audio) more personally and thoroughly, and perhaps even share your thoughts in the comments here or on the main sermon post.

Susan Slade

Being spiritually alive feels awesome! But it’s a hard-to-maintain this state of “feel good” in this world. When the knowledge of Jesus Christ, the understanding of God’s faithfulness and forgiveness and the sensation of love and acceptance is experienced through fellow believers, the spiritual side of us comes alive! It is a tangible awakening of body to the extent that it doesn’t feel numb, rote, dull or flat any longer. A spiritually charged human who is alive in Christ has dimension that can be spotted a mile away. And it’s because there is a living, two-way, open and active relationship in progress. But not everyone understands that the new dimension is of God. John 1: 10 says of Christ that “the world did not recognize him.”

When I talk to myself through times of hurt, sadness, anger, resentment, self-righteousness, fear, and worry, I tell myself, “focus on Christ.” This is my “deep breath” mantra that helps me press forward. And I pray for Him to keep me grounded, to help me to make good choices through my troubles, to keep me walking on the straight path and for Him to bless me and surround me with helpers and friends who will guide me in His Word.

Although I can’t see a physical God, I see his hands at work, I feel the kindness and acceptance of his believers, I hear prayers and praises to Him and hear his encouragements through the voices of fellow believers. And I taste the sweetness and bitterness of his creations. I smell the bread that is shared in caring and friendship. These are real. And they help me to keep my spiritual eyes turned towards our awesome God.

Royallen Wiley

I am a very visual person so I could relate to the object lesson you shared about what it would be like to lose the sense of sight. Also, as one who has corrected vision, I have often wondered what it would have been like to live in a world of blurred vision before the era of contacts and glasses. I would have missed so much of seeing and admiring God's handiwork in creation.

I have always liked the passage from John. It has always been comforting to me to know that Jesus has always been there with God, right from the very beginning, and didn't just show up on the scene 2000 years ago. I liked your reference about humans being spiritually blind and the imagery you used of darkness and light. I connected with "the Word became flesh, so we can now see the face of God."

I too wonder sometimes about how God reveals himself to us and why He doesn't do it in some sort of awesome cosmic display of power. Yet, it's there for me to see every day in admiring a beautiful sunrise or sunset, seeing a beautiful flower or in the smile of an infant. My main takeaway is to live in the moment of God's awesome creation and thank God that he sent Jesus to connect with us.

Patrick Larson

The sermon this past Sunday made me realize that, right or wrong, I have a tendency to view Jesus as the end goal of our existence. I think that accepting Christ as my Savior and Lord and having a relationship with Him is the end-all, be-all of the Christian's life. I think of Jesus as saving me from something bad, but not as enabling me to experience something good! Yes, Jesus saved me from the eternal consequences of my sin, but His sacrifice also makes it possible for me to have the relationship with my Creator that He intended from the beginning.

These Scriptures make it clear that that the purpose of the Christ(Messiah) is to provide a way for us to come in to the presence of God the Father and experience His Glory - a privilege we forfeited in the garden of Eden with original sin. That is why no one can look on the face of God, our sinful nature cannot be in His holy presence. Jesus' sacrifice of blood washes away my sin and He tears away the veil so that I can directly come into the presence of my Creator.

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