Sunday, February 22, 2015

Focus: Relinquishing the False Self

Truly God's creation is beautiful.

When you look in the mirror, do you like what you see?

Do you like who you are?

Sadly, we too often live the negative.

Sometimes we look at ourselves through the lies of the enemy.

Lonely?  Abandoned? Isolated? No one cares?  This is the way I am; I'll never be better than this?

There is good in you because God created you.

The world we live in brings us a sense of wickedness; we look at ourselves through the lies of Satan.

[Pastor related beautifully the story of Cinderella.  Cinderella was abused, used, given all the ugly chores; not the life a princess should live. "You are nothing but a servant," was the lie she was led to believe.  But through a miraculous change, she becomes beautiful.  She is now the REAL Cinderella.]
Cinderella finally realized who she was meant to be-- not a slave or a servant to the wicked, but she was her father's child.  She was royalty!

Reading:  Psalm 139

If you want to know your capabilities, look to the One who made you.  He is so powerful he has no opposite.  He deserves all our allegiances, our trust, our obedience.
When you recognize how special you are, you glorify Him!

*The trap is: We believe the lies of the wicked stepmother.*  We need a Cinderella story.

Above all, God knows you.  He created you.  He knows you well.  He feels your heartbeat.  He knows everything before you, behind you, time and space.  He sees your life in the span of all it is.

God not only knows you, but He will never leave you. (v.23)  He is present; He is thinking about you.
You are His child!
God never turns his back on his children.  He has a plan for you.  He made you for a purpose.  You are not an accident.  God knows what He is doing!  He is not confused.  He has thoughts about you.

Key:  Find ways to trust Him more.

God wants to search your heart so you can see what you were meant to be.  Allow Him to reveal the lies; trust Him.  He will change everything about you. 

 He will lead you!

Pastor Johnnie Blair
Sunday Morning

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Friday, February 13, 2015

Whiner and Winner

Whiner:  Just my luck; my numbers are drawn in the half-billion dollar Powerball game and I have to share it with two other people.  Growl.

Winner (me):  I won two dollars in the Wednesday Powerball.  I'll win two more Saturday. Over the past year, I have won $208, and that is not buying just one ticket per pop.  Tra la!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015


The major difference between a thing that might go wrong and a thing that cannot possibly go wrong is that when a thing that cannot possibly go wrong goes wrong it usually turns out to be impossible to get at or repair.   Douglas Adams, Mostly Harmless

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Focus: Worship

We need to worship; it is basic, in the DNA.

Worship practices flow in and out of every aspect of our lives.

We have lost track of the real issue.  Worship is not about style, people, preferences, or practice.  Something is missing.

Quality of worship is dictated by purity of heart.

I Kings, chapter 18.  Question:  Whom will you worship?

Like the ancient Israelites who worshipped JHWH yet bowed down as well to pagan gods, we find ourselves bowing down to side-kick gods in our lives, finding pleasures in places we have no business being.

Elijah restored the altar, placed the sacrifice, doused it with water, then prayed to God, "I have done these things at your command."

Then the fire of the Lord fell and consumed everything.

Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

It is one thing to offer a sacrifice; quite another thing to BE the sacrifice.

It is one thing to pretend; quite another thing to be a doer.  A lot of pretenders.

I must die out to self, allow the Holy Spirit to consume me.

Hebrews 12:14 Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:

Without holiness no one shall see the Lord.  This is terrifying.  He wants all of me: no half-in, half-out worship.  We are to worship God in reverence and in awe. (v. 28) Our God is a Consuming Fire.

Through grace we are saved, we are sanctified, our lives are changed, and the idols are removed from our lives.  Do not miss it!

Some live with too much defilement in their lives; worship with their mouths, though their hearts are far from Him.

He wants to change lives forever!
Sexual perversion is one of society's biggest idols.  It is the root of trafficking, domestic violence, and much wickedness.  

The issue of sexuality and lust must be sanctified by God.

He wants us to be free!

See to it that you obey the Word.

Worship is not about style, preference, people, or practice.
Worship is not about offering a sacrifice.
Worship is about being the sacrifice.

    1.  What consumes you?
    2.  What is the primary object of your affections?
    3.  What gets the majority of your attention?

Romans 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Worship God with Reverence and Awe.
Do it!

Pastor Johnnie Blair
Sunday morning
Disclaimer: This is not an outline nor a complete presentation
of the pastor's sermon.  These are notes taken during the service
and reflect what these ears heard.  The sermon will be posted on
podcast, as these are each week, and you may listen to it here.

Friday, February 6, 2015


Politicians, in office and out, are much less about solving problems than they are about creating a narrative.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Focus: The Real Deal

There are things that make up the Christian life that should be natural to the dedicated Christian.

Is your faith making an impact on every part of your life?

If you take seriously these normal Christian tools God will change your life: fasting, service, prayer.

"Christians" can be sorted into these categories.

  1. Cultural Christians who believe they are Christians because the culture tells them they are. There is really no living proof in the heart.
  2. Congregational Christians who are affiliated with a church, but their lives outside the walls is not affected.  Do not have it all together.
  3. Practicing Christians who live a fully inflated, ready-to-play life (it is Super Bowl Sunday-- ed.) They live the life that says they are going to do it right.
The lesson is from Luke chapter four where Christ immediately following his baptism goes into a forty-day fast in the wilderness.
  • Jesus was filled with the Holy Spirit.  He always acted and reacted according to the Spirit.
  • If Jesus relied on the Holy Spirit, how much more must we do likewise?
  • Jesus relied on scripture, the Word of God.
  • Jesus served God with a singular focus.
Spiritual discipline is to create a space in your life for the Spirit to work. This separates the cultural and marginal Christian from the dedicated Christian.

When was the last time you practiced fasting, service, prayer? Practice them regularly.

Christ is the focus and centerpiece of every aspect of the dedicated Christian's life.
"By their fruit ye shall know them."

Challenge: Pick up disciplines that will allow God to work in your heart.  Develop a passionate fervor for God.

Pastor Johnnie Blair
Sunday Morning