11/19/2017

Sermon:           Called to be Bold and Faithful

Theme:            We are called to be healthy in evil times by being bold and engaged, rather than being timid and anxious.

Purpose:          The congregation will draw strength from using their gifts faithfully.

Scriptures:       1 Thessalonians 5:1-11           Recognize the evil in the world by remaining awake and faithful to God.

Matthew 25:14-30      Parable of the talents – the wise and faithful slaves and the anxious slave.

 

Question:

In what ways do we need to put our faith into action in order to have a healthy knowledge of Christ? Is it possible to be loving without doing something? In what ways are each of us able to find God’s mission and purpose for our lives? What does it mean to us to be “children of the light” living in the present and serving God? In what ways are those who are serving and reaching out in Christ’s name better able to cope with the darkness of the world at this time? What happens when we fail to put our faith into action? What issues and conflicts emerge for those who are not prepared to live out their faith by showing Christ’s love?

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11/12/2017

Sermon:           “Called to Learn”

Theme:            We are called to practice our faith so as to grow through loss, doubts, and uncertainties.

Purpose:          The congregation will reaffirm their need to be consistent in learning through daily practicing their faith.

Scriptures:       1 Thessalonians 4:13-18         We do not grieve as those who have no hope.

Matthew 25:1-13        The parable of the wise bridesmaids and the foolish bridesmaids.

Questions:

In what ways is learning an essential part of our life in Christ? How are grief, dealing with change, and adapting necessary parts of a healthy Christian life? What happens when we become stuck or fixated on the past? What happens when we cease to live faithfully, enjoying God’s presence?  In what ways are we seeing the problems among Christians around us a result of failing to practice a living, active faith in Christ?

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11/5/2017 Communion “Called to Serving”

Sermon:           “Proclaim Christ, But Avoid Using Words”

Theme:            We seek to show God’s message of peace and justice through the way in which we live so that people will know Christ through us.

Purpose:          The congregation will reflect on the ways in which we practice peace and justice with one another.

Scriptures:       1 Thessalonians 2:9-13           Remember our work and our conduct as parents guiding our beloved children in the knowledge of God.

Matthew 23:1-12        You will not be hypocrites, but will practice your faith so that people will know God in your relationships together.

Questions:

Do our actions support our message of God’s love? In what ways do we proclaim God with our words but fail to show God’s love in our attitude or actions? How can we learn to serve joyfully and with gratitude? How does our strength flow through serving God, rather than through focusing on tasks or jobs? How do we grow as God’s servants, showing humility? In what ways is humility essential to minimize hypocrisy?

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October 29, 2017 Called to live by love.

Sermon:          “Called to Live By Love”

Theme:            Christians show love by their actions which are without malice or deception so that they may demonstrate Christ’s presence to the world.

Purpose:           The people will seek to be faithful and honest in their communications with one another and the world.

Scriptures:        1 Thessalonians 2:1-8 We do not manipulate or seek approval but share the gospel from our hearts.

Matthew 22:34-36      The greatest commandment and submission to God.

Questions:

If we are called to live by the one law of loving our neighbor as ourselves, then what is the source of all of the judgment and condemnation in the name of Christianity?  How can we be completely  honest and authentic in our witness of Christ’s love? In what ways are our own flaws, and weaknesses a part of the message of Christ’s love and acceptance? How do we learn to practice dependence on the love of Christ? What is different when our work and testimony is based solely on the love of Christ and trust in God?

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October 22, 2017 Called to Live Generously

Sermon:           “Called to Live Generously”

Theme:            Real joy is found when we learn to live in the abundance of gratitude and generosity.”

Purpose:          The congregation will consider ways of practicing generosity.

Scriptures:       1 Thessalonians 1:1-10           You have been chosen by God to serve and to share Christ’s love.

Matthew 22:15-22      Give to God what is God’s and give to the emperor what is the emperor’s

Questions:

How do we learn to be less anxious and worried about our possessions? How does fear and feelings of scarcity affect us? What would happen if we were continually confident that our needs will be provided? What would change if we no longer worried or felt fearful about our property? In what ways are we called to learn and practice gratitude so that we may show the world what it means to be joyful and generous? In what ways does generosity change the world around us?

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October 15, 2017 Called to Put God First.

Sermon:            “Just Come to the Banquet”

Theme:            Our way of being free is to be submitted to Christ’s invitation to enter into relationship which has real purpose and joy.

Purpose:          The congregation will understand and work to practice submission.

Scriptures:       Philippians 4:1-9         Rejoice in the Lord always, focus on the things that are pure and honorable.

Matthew 22:1-14        Parable of the wedding banquet.

Questions:

What does God really want us to be and to do? What does it mean to be welcomed by God in grace and acceptance? What should our response be to that gift of love? What happens when we practice gratitude and acceptance? What strength and peace can we find in letting go of our past hostility and battles? What really is the sacrifice of letting go of the past?  In what way are we rejecting God when we hold onto our identity of resentment and attempt to retain the ability to judge and condemn others?

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October 8, 2017 Called to Put Faith Into Action

Sermon:           “Called to Put Our Faith into True Action”

Theme:            Christians will show their knowledge of Christ through forgiveness and working for God’s justice In the world.

Purpose:          The congregation will recognize our true call to serve and set our egos aside.

Scriptures:       Philippians 3:4b-14     Paul’s history of religious practice versus growing in the love and knowledge of God.

Matthew 21:33-46      Parable of the Landowner and the unfaithful tenants.

Questions:

What is the real meaning of faithfulness? What difference does it make to a person to faithfully practice their relationship with Christ? How does this affect a person’s view of themselves? How does this affect our view of our work and practice? Is the purpose of being Christ just to feel better about ourselves or does our joy and confidence flow out of an experience that comes out of being in Christ? What does this do to our attitude towards rewards and accolades?

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10/01/2017 World Communion Sunday Peacemaking Offering and Communion

Sermon:            “United With All Who Serve God”

Theme:            We are one with all people who practice the righteousness of God’s love, humility, and grace.

Purpose:           The congregation will seek greater openness towards people of other cultures and styles of faith.

Scriptures:        Philippians 2:1-13       Christ emptied himself, taking the form of a servant and humbling himself.

Matthew 21:23-32      Faithfulness is to do the things that God commands us to do.

Questions:

What does it mean to us to worship Christ who humbled himself and served others? Is it possible to know Christ without also practicing humility and service? What does serving do to our faith? Are we like the child who is obedient in speech but not in our actions? Or are we obedient to God in our service and humility? How do we learn real healthy humility?

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Message from Sept 24, 2017

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“Called to Eat Pruned Fruit Salad”
Luke 3:7-9
John 15:1-12
Ruling Elder Pedro Arellano

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09/17/2017

Sermon:           “Called to Share Forgiveness”

Theme:            We share a gift of forgiveness as we give forgiveness and enable others to know the peace of God in our words and actions.

Purpose:          The congregation will seek to intentionally practice forgiveness for others.

Scriptures:       Romans 14:1-12          We are in fellowship with one another to build one another up and to glorify God.

Matthew 18:21-35      The parable of the unforgiving servant and the king who forgave the accounts.

Questions:

How does our lack of forgiveness affect our relationship with God? Can one be a Christian without learning forgiveness? How do we learn to forgive, especially in places where hurt runs deep? Does forgiveness leave others unpunished? What is the impact bitterness and unforgiveness on our relationship with those who are closest to us? In what ways does abusiveness and violence rise up out unforgiveness?  What forgiveness do we owe God and what has God forgiven us?

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09/10/2017 Back to two services

Sermon:           “Called to Heal”

Theme:            We are called to be joyfully healed as we take part in God’s work of bringing light and healing to the world.

Purpose:          The congregation will reflect upon our common call and practices as we serve Christ.

Scriptures:       Romans 13:8-14          Love one another, awaken and clothe yourselves with light.

Matthew 6:9-15          In prayer, love and offer forgiveness.

 

Questions:

What difference does our prayer life make in our relationships? In what ways does connecting to God as our source of strength and supplying our needs free us to be loving and forgiving? How is it that anxiousness about the things we need causes us to be jealous, envious, and unforgiving?  In what ways are our selfishness and hostility causing us to miss out in the joy of relationships and healthy living? Are the myths of our own control and depending on our own strength robbing us of the fullness of what God would like to share with us?

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09/03/2017 9:00 AM (One Service) Labor Day Weekend Communion

Sermon:           “Being Ourselves, Being Christ”

Theme:            God created us to be in a relationship of serving and boldly giving ourselves so that we may be a part of God’s work.

Purpose:          The congregation will examine their own call to boldly follow Christ.

Scriptures:       Romans 12:9-21          Let love be Genuine, live peaceably with all.

Matthew 16:21-28      Jesus’ mission to sacrifice, those who seek to save their life will lose it.

 Questions:

What does it mean for us to “let love be genuine?” Are we able to be ourselves and to practice genuine love? Is it possible that our best self was designed to practice genuine love? What happens to our true self if we begin to practice and live a sacrificial faith? In what ways did the path the cross flow out of Jesus’ true self? How do we come to be ourselves and become Christlike in our relationships?

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