Archive for the ‘Church’ Category

December 23rd, 2015

The Purpose of the Church

“…so that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places.” Ephesians 3:10 (ESV)

As the Church of Jesus Christ, we are called to proclaim the manifold wisdom of God to both creatures on the earth and rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. We are called to unveil God’s redemptive plan, forged in eternity past, by which He seeks to unite all things to Him in Christ Jesus, Whose propitiatory work now makes intimacy between God and creation possible. We are revealing the hope of everything!

What an incredible calling we have, and yet so often we lose focus. We make the church experience about us, focusing on how a given church meets our needs or perhaps how it doesn’t. We jump from church to church, seeking the most entertainment value or the best childcare. Now, all of these secondary issues are not completely unimportant, but they are just that. They are secondary. In the consumer-driven world in which we live, we must take extra precautions to not fall victim to that mentality in the Church, remembering that our calling to the body of Christ is much larger than a social event. No, it is the hope of the world!

Today, remember the calling of the Church to make known the manifold wisdom of God, and further remember the boldness and confidence that is yours in Christ Jesus to accomplish this calling. Is there someone you know this Christmas who needs this hope? Speak boldly and tell of His glorious worth.

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Mobilization Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, December 23rd, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Church, Ephesians, Proclamation.
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August 28th, 2014

God’s Team

“And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.” Acts 2:44-47 (ESV)

God’s team is made up of those who have been saved by His grace. God’s team members wear the Jesus jersey and play for His glory. His team is characterized by unity, community, selflessness, generosity, compassion, loyalty, fellowship, gladness, sincerity, evangelism, and growth.

Doing church first involves being the church. Our doing flows out of our being. It is possible to become so busy doing church that you bypass the relational aspect of being the church. God has called us, the church, to an abiding relationship with Christ.

  • “So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone.” Eph. 2:19-20 (ESV)

As a member of God’s household, you are called to abide in Christ. Your perpetual connection to Christ and His resources will result in bearing fruit. However, don’t focus on bearing fruit. Focus on abiding. As you abide in Christ, fruit will be born. Apart from Christ, you can do nothing. His is your Source and He is your Life! As you abide in Christ, you will instantly add more value to the team, the Body of Christ.

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, August 28th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Church, Community, Spiritual Growth.
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May 2nd, 2014

Courageous Partnership

And Jesus came and said to them, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.‘” Matthew 28:18-20 (ESV)

I live in awe of the reality that God would choose someone like to me to be adopted into His family, to be included in His redemption story, and to be empowered for His redemptive mission. If you have turned your life over to Jesus Christ and allowed Him to become the Lord of your life, you to have been adopted, included, and empowered by God and for God. Your life has true meaning and your life matters to God and directly impacts the population of heaven.

You have been given authority by Jesus to make disciples of all people groups. Don’t get distracted by materialism and the pursuit of prestige. Don’t allow your passion for God and His redemptive activity to be dissolved by the pursuit of worldly pleasures. Laser focus your life on that which moves the heart of God. Give your life to influencing people for Christ. As you go, make disciples. You may be the only Jesus others see.

Reveal God’s love to every person you come into contact with. Be an irresistible influence for Christ on this broken planet called earth. Reveal the grace you have been given by God to others. Reveal the mercy you have received through the atoning work of Jesus on the cross. Reveal the hope of Jesus to others. Give your life to fulfilling the Great Commission.

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, May 2nd, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Church, Evangelism, Great Commission.
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May 1st, 2014

On Mission with a Message

“‘For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.’” John 3:16 (ESV)

According to current statistics, there are approximately 7,105 living languages. There are more than 9,700 ethnic identities or people groups. With over 7.2 billion people on the planet, the world’s population is massive. What kind of hope is available to such a mass number of diverse people?

The hope of the world is found in John 3:16. If you had to condense the entire Bible into a single verse, it would be John 3:16. God’s love for all people groups is captured by this one verse. The wonderful news is that God took the initiative to provide us with the gift of eternal life through His one and only Son, Jesus. God chose to robe Himself in flesh and become like us so that we could become like Him.

Whoever believes receives God’s gracious salvation gift. There is no greater love. There is no greater gift. Bundle all the gifts from every Christmas you have experienced and you will not come close to the ultimate love gift God has provided in Jesus.

Now that you have received God’s gift of eternal life, be willing to make His gift known to others. “Now those who were scattered went about preaching the word.” (Acts 8:4 ESV). You can present the saving news of Jesus to any lost person anywhere and radically change their forever! You can share the ultimate gift with a world in need of our Savior.

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, May 1st, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Church, Evangelism, Missions.
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April 24th, 2014

Extending Personal Touch Ministry

“And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need.” Acts 2:44-45 (ESV)

The moment you became of follower of Jesus Christ, you received the imputed righteousness of Christ, you received the forgiveness of your sin, and you were adopted into God’s family. In Christ, you became a member of His body.

Your spiritual family helps you through the storms of life. Living in a fallen world can be challenging. Circumstances are not always favorable. Sickness, evil, and tragedy are sprinkled along life’s journey.

The redemptive activity of God was evident within the body of Christ at Pentecost when three thousand were added to their number. This diverse group of new believers had to learn how to do life together. They lived to bring pleasure to God and to be a blessing to each other. Their fellowship was enhanced by their perpetual generosity. With a clear display of unity, the believers sought to meet each other’s needs and to eliminate poverty.

God allows you to experience authentic community with other believers so that you can learn to extend personal touch ministry. God saved you and filled you with His Spirit so that you can continue the ministry of Jesus. Just do what Jesus did. Find a need and meet it. Turn interruptions into opportunities to be a blessing to those God brings into your path.

There are times in your journey of faith when you will need to be on the receiving end of personal touch ministry. You may walk through the valley of the shadow of death and need others to pour into your life. Ask God to expand your capacity to receive ministry. Learn how to extend personal touch ministry and how to receive personal touch ministry.

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, April 24th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Church, Ministry, Redemptive Activity.
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April 14th, 2014

Being Teachable

“And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.” Ephesians 4:11-13 (ESV)

Where do you fit in this picture? God has placed equippers in your life to help you develop into a fully devoted follower of Jesus Christ. God has placed a systematic process within the local church to promote spiritual maturity. Are you an intentional part of the process?

Take a close look at your level of participation in the life of the local church family. Are you being built up? Are you reaching unity in the faith and in the knowledge of Jesus and becoming mature? Are you attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ? What is your level of teachability?

Your spiritual maturity will be proportionate to your teachability. Are you teachable as you listen to your pastor’s message? Are you teachable as you sit under the teaching of a godly small group leader? Are you teachable as you spend time alone with God in prayer and Bible reading?

Make the most of the opportunities God has given you to grow spiritually. Maximize the moments you sit under anointed teaching from God’s Word. Move from hearing and reading God’s Word to applying God’s Word in daily living. Live out what God is depositing in you.

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, April 14th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Church, Spiritual Growth, Teachable.
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November 16th, 2013

Connectivity

“The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.” 1 Corinthians 12:12-13 (NIV)

Something extraordinary took place the moment you transferred your trust from yourself to Christ alone for salvation. In that moment, you became a child of God. Your sins were forgiven and placed as far as the east is from the west. You received the imputed righteousness of Christ and you were sealed by the Holy Spirit. In that conversion moment, you were adopted into God’s forever family and you became a vital part of the Body of Christ.

Just as your human body is made up a many parts, the Body of Christ is made up of many believers who together form one body. As followers of Jesus Christ, we make up the Body of Christ. Every believer is valuable and vital to the mission of multiplying members of the Body of Christ. In Christ, there is a dynamic connectivity that surpasses our ethnic, economic, and emotional differences. Though we are each uniquely designed by God and for God, we form the eternal Body of Christ.

The Holy Spirit is our common denominator. He has taken up residence in each one of us. As the Body of Christ, we individually have the privilege of being the walking tabernacle of the Presence of God. The Holy Spirit unites us, empowers us, and mobilizes us to accomplish God’s agenda upon the earth. You are never alone. Your fellow believers are wearing the same jersey as you and serving the same living Lord as you!

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, November 16th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Body of Christ, Church.
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December 23rd, 2012

The Purpose of the Church

“…so that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places.” Ephesians 3:10 (ESV)

As the Church of Jesus Christ, we are called to proclaim the manifold wisdom of God to both creatures on the earth and rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. We are called to unveil God’s redemptive plan, forged in eternity pasty, by which He seeks to unite all things to Him in Christ Jesus, Whose propitiatory work now makes intimacy between God and creation possible. We are revealing the hope of everything!

What an incredible calling we have, and yet so often we lose focus. We make the church experience about us, focusing on how a given church meets our needs or perhaps how it doesn’t. We jump from church to church, seeking the most entertainment value or the best childcare. Now, all of these secondary issues are not completely unimportant, but they are just that. They are secondary. In the consumer-driven world in which we live, we must take extra precautions to not fall victim to that mentality in the Church, remembering that our calling to the body of Christ is much larger than a social event. No, it is the hope of the world!

Today, remember the calling of the Church to make known the manifold wisdom of God, and further remember the boldness and confidence that is yours in Christ Jesus to accomplish this calling. Is there someone you know this Christmas who needs this hope? Speak boldly and tell of His glorious worth.

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 350:  Ephesians)

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Associate Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, December 23rd, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category Church, Ephesians, Proclamation.
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November 16th, 2011

Connectivity

“The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.” 1 Cor 12:12-13 (NIV)

Something extraordinary took place the moment you transferred your trust from yourself to Christ alone for salvation. In that moment, you became a child of God. Your sins were forgiven and placed as far as the east is from the west. You received the imputed righteousness of Christ and you were sealed by the Holy Spirit. In that conversion moment, you were adopted into God’s forever family and you became a vital part of the Body of Christ.

Just as your human body is made up a many parts, the Body of Christ is made up of many believers who together form one body. As followers of Jesus Christ, we make up the Body of Christ. Every believer is valuable and vital to the mission of multiplying members of the Body of Christ. In Christ, there is a dynamic connectivity that surpasses our ethnic, economic, and emotional differences. Though we are each uniquely designed by God and for God, we form the eternal Body of Christ.

The Holy Spirit is our common denominator. He has taken up residence in each one of us. As the Body of Christ, we individually have the privilege of being the walking tabernacle of the Presence of God. The Holy Spirit unites us, empowers us, and mobilizes us to accomplish God’s agenda upon the earth. You are never alone. Your fellow believers are wearing the same jersey as you and serving the same living Lord as you!

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, November 16th, 2011 at 1:00 am
Category Body of Christ, Church.
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August 28th, 2010

God’s Team

“All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.” Acts 2:44-47 (NIV)

God’s team is made up of those who have been saved by His grace. God’s team members wear the Jesus jersey and play for His glory. His team is characterized by unity, community, selflessness, generosity, compassion, loyalty, fellowship, gladness, sincerity, evangelism, and growth.

Doing church first involves being the church. Our doing flows out of our being. It is possible to become so busy doing church that you bypass the relational aspect of being the church. God has called us, the church, to an abiding relationship with Christ.

  • “Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God’s people and members of God’s household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone.” Eph 2:19-20 (NIV)

As a member of God’s household, you are called to abide in Christ. Your perpetual connection to Christ and His resources will result in bearing fruit. However, don’t focus on bearing fruit. Focus on abiding. As you abide in Christ, fruit will be born. Apart from Christ, you can do nothing. His is your Source and He is your Life! As you abide in Christ, you will instantly add more value to the team, the Body of Christ.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, August 28th, 2010 at 1:00 am
Category Church, Community, Spiritual Growth.
Interact No Comments