Monday Kfirst Kickstart: “Dirt and Dung” #TheTable

Symbols are common in the Christian’s world.

A crown – royalty; victory
A dove – peace; the Holy Spirit
A door – opportunity or closure
Fire – glory of God; Holy Spirit
A cross – love, hope, redemption

But there is an overlooked symbol taken for granted that is needed more than ever in our world: The Table.

What we find in most ordinary homes was a place of extraordinary opportunities. This often unnoticed instrument of intimacy is where bread was broken, hearts opened, and lives shared. The table made outsiders friends. The table healed family fracture. The table is where the empty was filled.And the table is what Jesus invites us to partake in, yet, it is His challenge to all of us to take into the world around us.

In December, we return to a familiar topic for our church community in a new teaching series called, “Remember the Table.” Together, we partake of the hospitality of Jesus in order that we would go and “do likewise” (Luke 10:37).

Check out the service from the website or from the Facebook livestream. 

Other thoughts from the Youversion notes from Sunday:

  • “Few acts are more expressive of companionship than the shared meal…someone with whom we share food is likely to be our friend, or well on the way to becoming one.” – Carolyn Steel
  • The gospel was never meant to sedate us but to activate us in abundant life in this world.
  • Nothing more than Jesus is required; nothing less than Jesus will do.
  • When you serve others, God changes lives—and the first life He often changes is yours.

Love you all!  See you this Sunday!

BTW: Here’s a great song for the week…

Monday Kfirst Kickstart: “Probably Both” #TheTable

Symbols are common in the Christian’s world.

A crown – royalty; victory
A dove – peace; the Holy Spirit
A door – opportunity or closure
Fire – glory of God; Holy Spirit
A cross – love, hope, redemption

But there is an overlooked symbol taken for granted that is needed more than ever in our world: The Table.

What we find in most ordinary homes was a place of extraordinary opportunities. This often unnoticed instrument of intimacy is where bread was broken, hearts opened, and lives shared. The table made outsiders friends. The table healed family fracture. The table is where the empty was filled.And the table is what Jesus invites us to partake in, yet, it is His challenge to all of us to take into the world around us.

In December, we return to a familiar topic for our church community in a new teaching series called, “Remember the Table.” Together, we partake of the hospitality of Jesus in order that we would go and “do likewise” (Luke 10:37).

Check out the service from the website or from the Facebook livestream. 

Other thoughts from the Youversion notes from Sunday:

  • “A shared meal is the world’s oldest social network.” – Dr. Caroline Leaf
  • Jesus interrupts what we are about to show us what He is about.
  • If following Jesus doesn’t cost you anything, you may be more of a fan than a follower.
  • You don’t need to have it all together to be around Jesus.
  • If Jesus wanted you at your worst, why would you conclude that He is growing disinterested in you now?
  • Your life bears fruit, not for yourself, but for others.
  • Your life is a table; a place to invite those who need to partake of Jesus’ love.

Love you all!  See you this Sunday!

BTW: Here’s a great song for the week…

Monday Kfirst Kickstart: “Under the Table”

Today I want to give you a place to start your week. It’s Monday and in the wake of a great weekend and a workweek ahead, sometimes you just need a “kickstart” to get focused.  So grab some coffee let’s start a great week together.

 

 

 

 

 

Yesterday we continued our series “Back to the Table” at Kfirst. Though this is a new series of talks, the topic is NOT new as this is our third series that visits the “table practice of Jesus.” We see our lives as a “table” of hospitality. We see opportunities to change the world is done through Jesus’ approach to others at a shared table.

The “Table” is really three specific items: It is the SYMBOL, the MESSAGE, and the ACTION of the Kingdom of God. So when we show the radical hospitality of Jesus, we show, speak, and live the Kingdom of God.

Today we spoke out of Mark 6 in a message called “Under the Table.” When someone is paid “under the table,” it’s because they don’t want what they have to be subject to an authority. And so often we sit at a table with others, have a smile on our face, but we pass negativity under the surface because we don’t want to subject our hurts to the authority of Christ. In our scripture, the crowd was such offense to Jesus that they missed out on miracles they could have experienced. As we read verses 1-6, two words stuck out today:

  1. Carpenter
    • The Greek word is really “craftsman.” Jesus learned to build tables before he sat at them. It is such a great challenge for all of us. Are we known for what we build or what we break? Do we build bridges (tables) or do we break them down?
  2. Offended
    • This word is derived from a word describing a stick to spring a trap. And that’s exactly what offense wants to do to our hearts. It wants to spring a trap that captures us and snares us into being so consumed with hurt we miss out on what God has in store for us.

And that’s exactly what happens when we leave offense beneath the surface. We miss out on miracles because we are so wrapped up in our issues.

This week, look to be a carpenter and “build a table/bridge” with hospitality. Look to create the symbol, message, through the actions of love and grace. Second, check your heart for anything that’s under the surface. Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal areas that you may need to subject the authority of Jesus and the peace and healing He provides.

Love you all. Praying over you this week.

BTW: Here’s a song for your week

Marriage Blog: Leave the Money on the Nightstand

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Having a few weeks off of blogging, my heart has been burning to blog on a subject that has crumbled and continues to eat away at so many marriage. Paul addresses it in the famous “love chapter”:

Love “does not demand its own way.” 1 Corinthians 13:5

This cancerous element has no place in your life.  It has no place in your marriage. It will weaken you and your spouse to the point where you will be unable to stand together.

It’s called selfishness.

Yet every time we act out of it…
…every time we think with it…
…we use and abuse our spouse in order to get our own way.

We, by doing it, empower our spouse to say, “Leave the money on the nightstand.”

money nightstand 1

I understand that it’s an intense metaphor.  But I cannot think of anything more graphic, and yet aptly descriptive, of what selfishness does to your spouse.  The phrase “Leave the Money on the Nightstand” is known as a reply of a prostitute to a “client”.  It is the tired, broken reply of someone who has been so used for selfish gain.  It is the rehearsed line spoken to people who have “demanded their own way” with very little care and minimal emotional investment.  My fear is that selfish people are positioning their spouses to feel no different from a harlot: simply there for you to get what you want and leave them void.

I’m tired of it.  I’m so stinking weary of grown adults playing the childhood game of “mine” with the person they should be serving most.  I’m so sick of marriages falling apart because grown men and women don’t know how to think of anyone else but themselves.  Every day, people act out a scenario of selfish ambition trying to grab all they can thinking “if I don’t, someone else is going to be better than me.”  We take and take until we’ve depleted the resource (marriage) without the thought of pouring in (unless it’s to our benefit).  It’s like the zombie apocalypse is about to hit and they’re taking all that they can because they don’t know if they are going to get anything later.  To deepen the issue, we seed that mentality in our children by displaying the selfishness in front of them as well as refusing to raise them with the mentality of serving first.  Instead, we raise them to “take first” as to make sure that no one else’s child gets ahead of our kids.

Love “does not demand its own way.” 1 Corinthians 13:5

The original language literally means “does not seek the things of itself.” Self-focus, which is the antithesis of love, marked the Corinthian church and, sadly, it marks too many marriages.  The way to correct “self-seeking” is, quite simply Christ-seeking.  To see Him and discover Him is to discover the totality that is love. And THAT is the remedy for selfishness: Love.

Jesus said,

“’You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second [commandment] is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself’” (Mark 12:30-31).

As we find our completeness in Him, it gives us the ability to love and serve those around us.  Jesus, in Mark 12, was teaching that concern for others must equal the natural concern we have for ourselves…

…and the word “others” should not just include our spouse but place them first above all human relationships.

Does our spouse see that?  Can they tell that they are the priority in our lives? We have to be willing to step off the pedestal we’ve built to be seen and raise up the importance of serving our spouse.

Our spouses should never feel used.  Our spouses should never feel void.  We have to guard our wives/husbands from be “marital harlots” for us to take what we want and go about our day.

Lay aside your pride.  Lay aside what YOU want.

It’s time for you to be a spouse who will raise up the concern to serve HIGHER than the level to receive.

Thanks for letting me ramble…

 

 

2 Minute Devo Series: Book of Matthew Day 10

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Welcome to our 2 Minute Devos.  This month we’re going through the Book of Matthew.  Take the time to read through the passage of the day and listen to the 2 Minute Devo.

Matthew 9

English Standard Version (ESV)

Jesus Heals a Paralytic

And getting into a boat he crossed over and came to his own city. And behold, some people brought to him a paralytic, lying on a bed. And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Take heart, my son; your sins are forgiven.” And behold, some of the scribes said to themselves, “This man is blaspheming.” But Jesus, knowing[a] their thoughts, said, “Why do you think evil in your hearts? For which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Rise and walk’? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”—he then said to the paralytic—“Rise, pick up your bed and go home.” And he rose and went home. When the crowds saw it, they were afraid, and they glorified God, who had given such authority to men.

Jesus Calls Matthew

As Jesus passed on from there, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax booth, and he said to him, “Follow me.” And he rose and followed him.

10 And as Jesus[b] reclined at table in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and were reclining with Jesus and his disciples. 11 And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” 12 But when he heard it, he said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. 13 Go and learn what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ For I came not to call the righteous,but sinners.”

A Question About Fasting

14 Then the disciples of John came to him, saying, “Why do we and the Pharisees fast,[c] but your disciples do not fast?” 15 And Jesus said to them, “Can the wedding guests mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them? The days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast. 16 No one puts a piece of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch tears away from the garment, and a worse tear is made. 17 Neither is new wine put into old wineskins. If it is, the skins burst and the wine is spilled and the skins are destroyed. But new wine is put into fresh wineskins, and so both are preserved.”

A Girl Restored to Life and a Woman Healed

18 While he was saying these things to them, behold, a ruler came in and knelt before him, saying, “My daughter has just died, but come and lay your hand on her, and she will live.” 19 And Jesus rose and followed him, with his disciples. 20 And behold, a woman who had suffered from a discharge of blood for twelve years came up behind him and touched the fringe of his garment,21 for she said to herself, “If I only touch his garment, I will be made well.” 22 Jesus turned, and seeing her he said, “Take heart, daughter; your faith has made you well.” And instantly[d] the woman was made well. 23 And when Jesus came to the ruler’s house and saw the flute players and the crowd making a commotion, 24 he said, “Go away, for the girl is not dead but sleeping.”And they laughed at him. 25 But when the crowd had been put outside, he went in and took her by the hand, and the girl arose. 26 And the report of this went through all that district.

Jesus Heals Two Blind Men

27 And as Jesus passed on from there, two blind men followed him, crying aloud, “Have mercy on us, Son of David.” 28 When he entered the house, the blind men came to him, and Jesus said to them, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” They said to him, “Yes, Lord.” 29 Then he touched their eyes, saying, “According to your faith be it done to you.” 30 And their eyes were opened. And Jesus sternly warned them, “See that no one knows about it.” 31 But they went away and spread his fame through all that district.

Jesus Heals a Man Unable to Speak

32 As they were going away, behold, a demon-oppressed man who was mute was brought to him. 33 And when the demon had been cast out, the mute man spoke. And the crowds marveled, saying, “Never was anything like this seen in Israel.” 34 But the Pharisees said, “He casts out demons by the prince of demons.”

The Harvest Is Plentiful, the Laborers Few

35 And Jesus went throughout all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction. 36 When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. 37 Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; 38 therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”