Archive for the ‘Example’ Category

December 11th, 2015

Are You a Recommendation to the Gospel?

“You yourselves are our letter of recommendation, written on our hearts, to be known and read by all. And you show that you are a letter from Christ delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. Such is the confidence that we have through Christ toward God.” 2 Corinthians 3:2-4 (ESV)

Paul takes a moment in the middle of his accounting of his triumph in Christ over various trials to explicitly state his intention for such writing. He writes to the Corinthian Church that His purpose is not to commend himself in his apostleship but rather to commend Christ for His glorious provision in the midst of any circumstance. As for Paul, he needs no further commendation, such as a letter, for his efficacious work is evidenced in the men and women who are living transformed lives as a result of the message Paul shared and the resulting favor of the Holy Spirit. They are his referent!

Would your life be able to be used by Paul as a reference to the power of the Holy Spirit? If Paul’s apostleship were being called into question today, could he point to you as evidence of the truth of the power of the gospel? We must be more than moral people; we must be more than people of good will. We must be a transformed people, acknowledging failures and our complete dependency upon the grace provided by the sacrifice of Christ. If we fail here, then we will fail to affirm the very message we say is unique. May we commit today to embody the truth of Christ’s completely satisfying nature, forsaking all other things for the gift of knowing  Him!

Grace and peace,

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

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, December 11th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category 2 Corinthians, Example, Gospel.
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October 29th, 2015

The Necessity of Forgiveness

“Then Peter came up and said to him, ‘Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?’ Jesus said to him, ‘I do not say to you seven times, but seventy times seven.’” Matthew 18:21-22 (ESV)

Forgiveness is a hard thing, no doubt, but it is also an essential thing for Christians. Peter in our passage this morning asks a question many of us have asked in our lives. How many times should we have to forgive someone? If someone keeps offending us or betraying us, should we continue to forgive them? Jesus answers from experience. While to the human mind forgiving someone so treacherous seven times may seem extraordinary, Jesus more than exceeds that expectation suggesting 70 times that!

Why should we keep on forgiving? Why should we forgive so freely? Well, consider the example of the gospel set before us. Consider how many times you and I have offended Jesus. Consider how many times we have rejected Him. Consider how many times we have rejected Him, and yet He forgave us. Not only did He forgive us, He made the forgiveness possible by taking on the penalty of our transgression Himself. He who knew no sin became sin so that we might be the righteousness of God! How incredible is that!

You and I must forgive because of how much we have been forgiven. I assure you nobody can do to you what we have done to the Lord, and yet in spite of our rejection He loved us enough to send Jesus to reconcile us. Do not be like the unforgiving servant, who having been forgiven chose not to extend that forgiveness to others. Rather, in light of what you have been forgiven, seek to extend that forgiveness to others as an act of worship to One Who has forgiven us so much.

Grace and peace,

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

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, October 29th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Example, Forgiveness, Matthew.
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July 20th, 2014

Set the Example

“Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.” 1 Timothy 4:12 (ESV)

After being involved in a life altering Jet Ski accident and surrendering to preach at age sixteen, I remember officiating one of my first weddings. I was standing near the altar steps just before the wedding rehearsal was to begin when the mother of the bride asks, “Where’s the minister?”

When I announced that I was the minister, you should have seen her face fall. She reacted by darting out the words of surprise that, in her estimation, I was just a kid. Those were the “good old days.”

Paul’s words of encouragement and instruction to his young son in the ministry have been a life-line over the years of my ministry. Every generation has the honor of participation in God’s redemptive activity. Regardless of your current life stage, whether you are in the Bridger, Buster, Boomer, or Builder generation, you have the wonderful invitation from God for participation in God’s world redemption story.

Don’t allow your inadequacies and insufficiencies to barricade you from joining God in His activity. Your usefulness to God is not based on your particular generational identification. Your usefulness to God is based on your identity in Christ and your availability to Christ.

Surrender to the Lordship of Christ and be an example to others in your conversation, your convictions, and your conduct. Every person in every generation will one day stand before God to give an account for the deeds done while in the body. Set a Christ-honoring example for others. Be a model to follow!

Drawing Near,

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

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, July 20th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Example, Influence, Lordship.
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February 3rd, 2014

Being a Model to Follow

“So that you became an example to all the believers in Macedonia and in Achaia.” 1 Thessalonians 1:7 (ESV)

Are you a model to follow? Are you reproducing the life of Christ before a watching world? God has created you, redeemed you, and empowered you to continue the ministry of Jesus on the earth.

After Jesus took the towel and basin of water, He washed the disciples’ feet. Then Jesus said to them, “For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you.” (John 13:15 ESV). Jesus is our model to follow. Do what Jesus did. Put the needs of others before your own. Focus your life on fulfilling God’s agenda. Live to benefit others. Radiate Jesus’ love and extend the compassion of Christ. Guard your daily intimacy with God. Extend personal touch ministry to those in need.

In his letter to his protégé, Paul reminded Timothy to “set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity” (1 Tim. 4:12 ESV). God wants you to set the pace for the gospel race. Model Christ in your home. Model Christ on your campus. Model Christ in your work environment and in your church. Be a godly example for others to see Christ in you.

The church at Thessalonica became a model to all the believers in Macedonia and Achaia. They consistently lived out the gospel before a watching world. They influenced their culture by continuing the ministry of Jesus. Instead of allowing the culture to determine their lifestyle, they allowed the life of Jesus to be unleashed through their lives.

Examine your life closely. What needs to change in your conversation and in your conduct in order to be a model to follow? How’s your thought-life? What needs to change in your private world in order to model Christ personally? Exhibit the life of character and integrity that Jesus modeled for you to follow.

Drawing Near,

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

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, February 3rd, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Example, Influence, Model.
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February 2nd, 2014

Being Imitated by Others

“And you became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you received the word in much affliction, with the joy of the Holy Spirit,” 1 Thessalonians 1:6 (ESV)

Paul, Silas, and Timothy modeled Christ before the new believers in Thessalonica to the extent that they were motivated to imitate them. The new believers imitated Paul, Silas, Timothy, and the Lord.

If people imitated you, would they be imitating the Lord? Are you living in such close communion with Jesus and doing what He did, that others would notice that you are imitating Christ? As you bring others to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, you become their spiritual parent. They look to you to see what the Christian life is supposed to look like. They imitate you as you imitate Christ. What kind of example are you portraying for others to follow?

As followers of Christ, we are to live the Gospel missionally by presenting living proof of a loving God to a watching world. God wants us to be an irresistible influence for His glory. Will others come to know Christ as a result of our love relationship with Him? Does our conversation and conduct demonstrate a consistent loyalty and devotion to Christ?

Be fully yielded and fully surrendered to the Lordship of Christ and allow Him to live His life through you to touch lost souls. May others welcome the message of Christ into their lives as you faithfully sow the seed of the Gospel. Imitate Christ by loving people and showing them how they can have heaven and eternal life.

If others are imitating you, will they become fully devoted followers of Christ? Will their daily walk with God be infused with passion and enthusiasm?

Drawing Near,

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

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, February 2nd, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Discipleship, Example, Influence.
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January 13th, 2014

Model What You Want to Multiply

“Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.” Ephesians 5:1-2 (ESV)

Did you know that you will multiply what you model? Now that is convicting! That means that it truly does matter how you live your life. It truly matters how you conduct your daily living. Your beliefs and your behavior both matter to God and impact others. So how do you live a life of love? Imitate God!

Maybe you have heard parents remark that they want you to do as they say and not as they do. Of course, you would define that behavior as hypocrisy. God wants us to live in such a way that we encourage others to do as we say and as we do. We are to strive to live in such a way that the way we live lines up with what we say.

What kind of love does God want you to model? God wants you to model sincere love. God wants you to set an example for others to follow. In other words, be a model to follow. Model the kind of life that draws others to Christ. Live the kind of life that models the fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

What are you multiplying? You know the answer: whatever you are modeling. Model what you want to multiply. May your children and those in your sphere of influence become fully devoted followers of Christ as a result of the sincere faith and love that you are modeling before them!

Drawing Near,

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

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, January 13th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Example, Love, Parenting.
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November 15th, 2013

Exemplify

“Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.” 1 Corinthians 11:1 (NIV)

The Apostle Paul was so passionate in his love relationship with Jesus that he could exhort the church of Corinth to follow his example. By following his example, they would be following the example of Christ because Paul was in alignment with the example of Christ. If others followed your example, would they be following the example of Christ?

  • “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity.” 1 Tim. 4:12 (NIV)
  • “To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.” 1 Pet. 2:21 (NIV)

Exemplify Christ. Spend time reading through the Gospels to learn how Jesus allocated His time. Focus on the interactions Jesus had with others and notice how He treated them. Seek to ascertain what Jesus valued by examining His lifestyle. You can also detect how Jesus responded to opposition and how He stayed on mission with God.

The goal of the Christian life is to be Christlike. Exemplify Christ by doing what Jesus did. Seek to continue the ministry of Jesus on the earth. Allow Jesus to live His life through you to impact others. Ask yourself, “Am I living in such a way that those who don’t know the Lord will be drawn to Him?”

Pursuing God,

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

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, November 15th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Christ-Centered Living, Consistency, Example.
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December 11th, 2012

Are You a Recommendation to the Gospel?

“You yourselves are our letter of recommendation, written on our hearts, to be known and read by all. And you show that you are a letter from Christ delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. Such is the confidence that we have through Christ toward God.” 2 Corinthians 3:2-4 (ESV)

Paul takes a moment in the middle of his accounting of his triumph in Christ over various trials to explicitly state his intention for such writing. He writes to the Corinthian Church that His purpose is not to commend himself in his apostleship but rather to commend Christ for His glorious provision in the midst of any circumstance. As for Paul, he needs no further commendation, such as a letter, for his efficacious work is evidenced in the men and women who are living transformed lives as a result of the message Paul shared and the resulting favor of the Holy Spirit. They are his referent!

Would your life be able to be used by Paul as a reference to the power of the Holy Spirit? If Paul’s apostleship were being called into question today, could he point to you as evidence of the truth of the power of the gospel? We must be more than moral people; we must be more than people of good will. We must be a transformed people, acknowledging failures and our complete dependency upon the grace provided by the sacrifice of Christ. If we fail here, then we will fail to affirm the very message we say is unique. May we commit today to embody the truth of Christ’s completely satisfying nature, forsaking all other things for the gift of knowing  Him!

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 338:  2 Corinthians 1-4)

Grace and peace,

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

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, December 11th, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category 2 Corinthians, Example, Gospel.
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October 29th, 2012

The Necessity of Forgiveness

“Then Peter came up and said to him, ‘Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?’ Jesus said to him, ‘I do not say to you seven times, but seventy times seven.’” Matthew 18:21-22 (ESV)

Forgiveness is a hard thing, no doubt, but it is also an essential thing for Christians. Peter in our passage this morning asks a question many of us have asked in our lives. How many times should we have to forgive someone? If someone keeps offending us or betraying us, should we continue to forgive them? Jesus answers from experience. While to the human mind forgiving someone so treacherous seven times may seem extraordinary, Jesus more than exceeds that expectation suggesting 70 times that!

Why should we keep on forgiving? Why should we forgive so freely? Well, consider the example of the gospel set before us. Consider how many times you and I have offended Jesus. Consider how many times we have rejected Him. Consider how many times we have rejected Him, and yet He forgave us. Not only did He forgive us, He made the forgiveness possible by taking on the penalty of our transgression Himself. He who knew no sin became sin so that we might be the righteousness of God! How incredible is that!

You and I must forgive because of how much we have been forgiven. I assure you nobody can do to you what we have done to the Lord, and yet in spite of our rejection He loved us enough to send Jesus to reconcile us. Do not be like the unforgiving servant, who having been forgiven chose not to extend that forgiveness to others. Rather, in light of what you have been forgiven, seek to extend that forgiveness to others as an act of worship to One Who has forgiven us so much.

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 295:  Matthew 18)

Grace and peace,

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

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, October 29th, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category Example, Forgiveness, Matthew.
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November 15th, 2011

Exemplify

“Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.” 1 Cor 11:1 (NIV)

One of my mentors is the pastor of First Baptist Church of Woodstock, Dr. Johnny Hunt. He often says, “The people in your community may not read the Bible, but they will read the gospel according to your life.” That statement connects with me on a deep level. It makes me contemplate what others see when they view my life. Am I living in such a way that those who don’t know the Lord will be drawn to Him?

The Apostle Paul was so passionate in his love relationship with Jesus that he could exhort the church of Corinth to follow his example. By following his example, they would be following the example of Christ because Paul was in alignment with the example of Christ. If others followed your example, would they be following the example of Christ?

  • “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity.” 1 Tim 4:12 (NIV)
  • “To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.” 1 Peter 2:21 (NIV)

Exemplify Christ. Spend time reading through the Gospels to learn how Jesus allocated His time. Focus on the interactions Jesus had with others and notice how He treated them. Seek to ascertain what Jesus valued by examining His lifestyle. You can also detect how Jesus responded to opposition and how He stayed on mission with God.

The goal of the Christian life is to be Christlike. Exemplify Christ by doing what Jesus did. Seek to continue the ministry of Jesus on the earth. Allow Jesus to live His life through you to impact others.

Pursuing God,

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

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, November 15th, 2011 at 1:00 am
Category Christ-Centered Living, Consistency, Example.
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