All posts filed under: Playlists

Jesus Has Redemptive Power Over Your Failures

This Sunday as we continue our new series “Nothing is Permanent,” we will be looking at 1 Chronicles 13-15 and 2 Samuel 6:12-15. This is one of my favorite passages in scripture but it is not an easy story to read. King David is preparing to bring the ark of the covenant back to Jerusalem. Throughout the Old Testament, the ark represented the very presence of God. So, as you can imagine, this was a big deal! However, in his enthusiasm, David fails to refer back to the proper way to move the ark (see Exodus 25:10-15, Numbers 4:4-6). When David sets forth with an impulsive plan, disaster strikes and the consequences prove fatal for one of his men. David set out to do a good thing for God and the people, but he went about it in the wrong way. Unfortunately, I can relate all too well. I come up with all kinds of great ideas “for God” and in my excitement to bring them to fruition I don’t always spend time seeking the …

Are You Living Out The Forgiveness Given To You?

-written by Betsie Richards Some of my favorite Bible stories are the ones where Jesus gives open, no-holds-barred forgiveness to someone and. at the same time He puts the Pharisees in their place. It may be because I have a “bit” of a snarky side and when Jesus calls the Pharisees out, it makes me smile. It may be because I know I need that open, no-holds-barred forgiveness too.  I love the story of the woman who was caught in adultery and brought to the Temple where Jesus was teaching. Jesus silences a crowd full of accusers by writing in the dirt and telling the one without sin to throw the first stone. When the crowd leaves without one rock thrown in condemnation, Jesus replies to her with “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.” This small statement is a declaration of forgiveness and purpose (see John 8:1-11) Another favorite of mine is the story of Luke 7:36-50. This passage tells the story of the “sinful woman” and how she washes Jesus’ feet with …

We Are One Crazy, Grace-filled, Adopted Family

Our primary role in this world is to proclaim the glory of God. We all have a different platform to do this. Many of us use our jobs to be Jesus to our co-workers. Other of us walk through the hallways of Central Middle School and Carrollton High School letting our light shine to our classmates. Some of us get up on stage and talk about Jesus. But we all have something in common that we can use to share the glory of God: family. I know what you’re thinking, “Tucker, how can my family spread the name of God? My dad is an alcoholic, my mom left us, I have no relationship with my siblings. Within my family, there is no sense of family.” While that may all be true, the image of your family does not depict the glory of God. Neither does the family who seems to have it all together. Even in our best attempt, we only give a glimpse of the entire glory of God. So, if we have family …

Do You Feel Like Damaged Goods? Be Reclaimed!

My mother was a shopper extraordinaire. She could sniff out a bargain hidden in a concrete bunker twenty feet below ground level. That’s where she did most of her shopping. It wasn’t called a concrete bunker. It was a “bargain basement.” I spent a lot of time with Mom in bargain basements. Most of my clothes had the labels cut out of them, or were found on the “damaged goods” table, or were marked “slightly irregular.” John Ortberg would call the bargain basement the “department-of-something’s-gone-wrong.” A stain won’t come out. A zipper won’t zip. A button won’t butt. Undesired. It’s too bad that a lot of people look at the church much as I did the bargain basement—society’s department-of-something’s-gone-wrong. Damaged goods. The undesirables. At best, slightly irregular. Reality Check: God designed the church for undesirables.  Remember, dear brothers and sisters, that few of you were wise in the world’s eyes or powerful or wealthy when God called you. – 1 Corinthians 1:26 Paul reminds the church that many of them had been damaged by sexual …

What Do You Do With This Worldly Tradition?

As a kid, I spent every Christmas Eve looking out my window wondering if I would see Santa. My mom would try to make me go to sleep, but I would secretly stay awake trying to see or hear Santa come into our home where he would leave our presents. It was the same story every year… I would fall asleep and then wake up in the middle of the night, sneak out of my room and go into the living room to see all of the presents. My confusion of how Santa got into my house without me noticing was quickly eradicated by my fascination with all the presents under the tree. It truly was a kid’s dream. I got several amazing presents, things I wished and hoped for and even asked Santa for when we went to the shopping mall. But there was something missing in my life during all of those years – a relationship with Jesus Christ. My family did an excellent job reminding me about Santa and how he was …

When Is The Right Time For Christmas Music?

Every year around this time the same thing happens.  Social media blows up with multiple rants. “It’s not right!” “It’s too early” “Why does it keep happening earlier and earlier every year!?” The age-old fight about Christmas music. Seriously, though, when are we supposed to start playing it?  Can we start when Christmas decorations hit the store shelves? Can we start when the weather cools down?  Do we have to wait until after Thanksgiving or even until the first day of December? My opinion? I don’t care. Seriously, it doesn’t matter one bit to me. I personally love Christmas music. I have a playlist on my Google music app (honestly, I have two different Christmas playlists) and I start playing them the hint Christmas comes around. Think back to the first Christmas… Jesus was born, our Savior came in the flesh to be a perfect sacrifice for our sins.  What was the “Christmas music” to herald His arrival? John the Baptist. And there were some arguments about the announcement of John the Baptist’s birth as well …

Silence Broken with a Message of Freedom for You

These words meant everything. Zachariah was shaken, overwhelmed with fear when he saw the angel. But Gabriel said, “Don’t be afraid, Zachariah! God has heard your prayer. Your wife, Elizabeth, will give you a son… He will be a man with the spirit and power of Elijah. He will prepare the people for the coming of the Lord. He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and he will cause those who are rebellious to accept the wisdom of the godly.” (Luke 1:13,17) Many of us know now what the Israelites did not know then. During this time, the Israelites were under the authority of the Roman Government. They were not a free nation. The goal of the Roman government was to suppress and destabilize the nation of Israel, sending it into obscurity. Rome had been responsible for the final destruction of the Temple and the burning down of Jerusalem.  The Israelites believed from the line of David, a Jewish Patriotic King would rise from the downfall of the Jews, lead a revolution to overthrow the …

Four Shrewd Money Principles For Peace

Growing up, my mom was a high school teacher and my dad was an AT&T accountant. Not only was my mom going to make sure my grades were stellar, but my dad was also going to make sure my finances and spending habits were on point. I believe what I learned from my parents is why I never worry about money. Never! I want to share a few of those lessons with you and hope they help your wallet and worry as we enter into this holiday season. Don’t spend what you don’t have. I can’t tell you how many times I have walked back and forth, pacing isles with items in my arms, debating whether I can buy it or not. I do this often at Robinson’s Overstock. If you walk in there on a Friday and see me, chances are I am going through this routine. I talk myself out of purchases all the time. I walk around the store with arms full and then as I head to the check-out, I start putting things …

Meditating on the Goodness of God

Over the past few years, I have been greatly influenced and impacted by corporate worship through song. Whether it be with my church body, other believers at a conference, in the car by myself, or in the living room with my wife, I have come to love singing songs to the Lord. Psalm 96:1-2 says, “Sing a new song to the Lord! Let the whole earth sing to the Lord! Sing to the Lord; praise his name. Each day proclaim the good news that he saves.” This Sunday, November 5, we’re singing a new song! We’ll also be singing a song that has become one of my favorites— King of My Heart. Through this song, we meditate on the goodness of our God. We meditate on the fact that God is our provider and sustainer— we are utterly dependent upon Him. I particularly like the bridge of this song, which repeats, “You’re never gonna let, never gonna let me down.” These are such sweet words to meditate on if we truly understand them. These words are like honey to our …

First Give To God What is His

The Bible is filled with practical wisdom for life; nuggets of wisdom that can be mined from the Scripture to help us be “wise as serpents and harmless as doves” (Matthew 10:16, ESV). The book of Proverbs is a treasure house of “get smart” lessons about life. Jesus packed the Sermon on the Mount with such lessons: be careful about the foundation on which you build your life house—it makes the difference between prosperity and disaster (Matthew 7:24-27); you better be careful about your criticism of others—it’ll come back to bite you (7:1-2); settle your differences quickly—if it gets to court you’ll pay through the nose (5:25-26). Now that’s about as practical as you can get! And probably any kid in our 456 program can understand it. There’s another area of life about which God knows we need practical, elementary teaching: the way we deal with our treasures on this earth. So He gives us the principle of “first fruits.” In the Old Testament, God’s people offered the first fruits of the harvest as an acknowledgment that …