Well, I guess my prayer life is taking a turn for the different. As I have recently tried to pray specifically for growth and maturity I have been given a prick in the recess of my mind. Portland has very few, if any, Jesus preaching churches. This probably shocks people to hear but I wonder if I will ever hear of a church that is un-apologetically preaching Jesus? It seems like the only churches I hear about that are doing the Jesus thing are outside of Portland. Do we lack people who care about the city or do we just live too far away now? If you look at population, Portland is where the people are, so why aren’t we there? I’m not necessarily talking about Greater Portland as much as Portland.
Let’s get a church on Congress Street. How about Fore Street? If we had a Saturday evening service in the Old Port…
As I drive through the city I see churches in various stages of disrepair. I hear of churches that exist only because they always have. Is there a place for a church that is a reformed Jesus preaching church in Portland? YES!
I am preaching on June 8th and 15th at Harvest in Scarborough and as I prepare to preach part of Nehemiah, I have been praying that we would minister to Portland like Nehemiah ministered to Jerusalem. What is that going to look like? I wonder if it will take moving into the city and planting a church smack dab in the center of culture. For too long we have been afraid of culture and all that we have to show for it is a christian sub-culture complete with TV, movies, music, books, stores…anything you want to do you can do it ‘like a true christian!’ I don’t want to yap about how bummed I am at the state of church…I want to go.
Hm, God is doing something inside of me and I pray that He would shout instead of whisper.
Are you living a Fruit Stripe life or a Juicy Fruit life? I realize that some people like fruit stripe better than juicy fruit but c’mon…if you do, you have no taste.
My point is this:
Juicy Fruit gum was invented in 1893 and has served the world with fruity goodness ever since. When I think if fruit flavored chewing gum I think JF. In the early 1960’s some dude invented Fruit Stripe gum. For those who don’t know, Fruit Stripe is a plasticy, painted, weaker version of JF. I hear your minds running now!
Are you living a fake painted life? I used to think that the people in Matthew 7:21-23 were people who were just plain not saved. Now I think differently! These are people who think they are saved! These are the people in our churches right now that think they prayed the prayer. These are the people in our churches right now that do not bear fruit. These are Fruit Stripe christians. Are you a Fruit Stripe christian or a Juicy Fruit christian?
Some who say Lord Lord to Him will get the reply of, “And you are…?”
As for me and my house…I wanna keep the flavor!
So I mentioned that I would be starting a series on Jesus this coming week. Today I started to work on said series and I could have worked late into the night. I was in such a groove that I didn’t want to stop. The major impetus for his series was the sermon series that Mark Driscoll did entitled Vintage Jesus. This was basically I treatice on the basics of Jesus. Who He is, what He said, what it means to us…etc. Many things that happen in the church today can both be impacted and have greater impact when put in the light of Jesus. Our views on missions trips, music, and methodology are rooted in our understanding of Jesus.
It is impossible to leave Jesus out of any equation. While we don’t see His name in the formula many times; we must understand that it was He that created the laws to even allow a formula in the first place. This is similar to the fact that the Pythagorean theorem does not mention anywhere in the equation the word geometry. However, we would be foolish to disassociate geometry with that theorem. It is the under girding…I realize that this is somewhat weak as an illustration, however, I feel that it gets my point across.
We can not delete Jesus from our practical living any more than we can delete capitalism from the US economy. Jesus is the structure of our christian life. Jesus SHOULD BE the structure of our christian life. When even I feel that I am rambling, I must be rambling…I just have so much to say about this.