Engaged: lifeServe

This 13-week series is centered on the fourth of the four components of our strategy (lifeServe), which is to offer our talents, gifts, and abilities to serve God, His church, and our neighbors.

 

lifeServe,part 12: Born to Serve
12/18/16
Pastor Matt Wipperman

Focus:  So we have come full circle back to the “present” Christ - Immanuel, God with us! As we have seen in this sermon series, our call to servanthood assures us a challenging and rewarding life in Jesus. It presents us with many opportunities to impact the world for the Gospel. Jesus was born to serve. From His humble beginnings in a stable manger to His humiliating death on a cross, His life was about serving others in the most sacrificial ways. In our baptism we are reborn to serve, transformed from serving self to serving Jesus and others in His name. We are made into new creations to follow in Jesus’ footsteps. May we carry forward in this world the hope of Jesus’ birth through our service to others. Main Text: Matt 1:23; Isa 52:13-53:12

lifeServe,part 11: The Merciful Servant
12/11/16
Pastor Matt Wipperman

Focus:  Mercy is not only recognizing or even feeling the pain of others, it is acting (serving) to alleviate the pain and help the afflicted to gain a Godly perspective on their suffering. As seen in the  example of Jesus, being merciful is constantly being alert to the suffering of others and having the willingness to act in their  interest. Being aware of another’s suffering presents us with two options: indifference, or drawing near for the purpose of helping. Jesus, the visible image of God, is our perfect model for mercy because everything in his life was a reflection of His Father. It was He who said, "Be merciful, just like your Father in heaven is merciful" (Lk 6:36). Main Text: Lk 6:36

lifeServe, part10: Abundance In Those We Serve
12/4/16
Pastor Matt Wipperman

Focus:  Jesus listened, empowered, and gave voice to those whom He ministered by starting where they were with what they had. His is our best example of how to serve our neighbor. Our tendency is to (paternalistically) determine our neighbor’s needs without listening to them first. Rather than creating dignity, this creates dependency, undermining the freedom that Christ came to give. Do we serve from our own need to be paternalistic or, do we serve from a desire to to see the freedom of Kingdom Come for every neighbor? Main Text: Mark 6:33-44 (Jesus Feeds Five Thousand)

lifeServe, part 9: Who Is My Neighbor? (Part 2)
11/27/16
Dan Luck

Focus:  “The Word became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighborhood” Jn 1:14 MSG. Serving in our neighborhoods is incarnational ministry. Kingdom servants desire for our neighbor’s and their families that which they desire for themselves and their families. Through service we better the lives of our neighbors spiritually, physically, socially, and emotionally, just as we attempt to better our own. It often requires that we share in the suffering and pain of others.

This was the example of Jesus. Through His incarnation Jesus became one of us, living among us, and sharing experience with us. He was not a “drive-by” neighbor, he did not commute to and from heaven.

 

Reality is that when we serve our neighbors in the place we occupy together, our neighborhood, we share community experience. Our neighbor’s problems become our problems; what we want for our children we want for our neighbor’s children; the crime they experience we too experience. In other words, we take ownership in our neighborhood. It is our context for authentic service. Main Text: John 1:14

lifeServe, part 8: Who Is My Neighbor? (Part 1)
11/20/16
Pastor Josh Miller

Focus:  Central to genuinely obeying and following Jesus is loving our neighbors as we love ourselves. If this is the case we naturally ask, “Who is my neighbor?” Who is it that we love and serve? What can we learn about Jesus and His will for us from this question? The parable of the Good Samaritan reveals that genuine, authentic Jesus-followers need to be aware and act upon the opportunities to help those with whom they

come in contact. Main Text: Lk 10:25-37 (Parable of the Good Samaritan)

lifeServe, part 7: Marks of a Servant
11/13/16
Pastor Matt Wipperman

Focus:  If you were to apply for the job of servant in the Kingdom, what qualifications might you need listed on your resume? The good news is that all Jesus-followers are servants in the Kingdom. There are a few  characteristics that identify us as such: The greater among us serves the lesser; we look to the interest of others; and Kingdom servants are trustworthy in their service. The challenge for Kingdom servants is evident - these characteristics are 180 degrees out of sync with our culture. Main Text: Luke 22:27, Jn 13:1-15, Phil 2:4, 1 Cor 4:2, Lk 16.12

lifeServe, part 6: Motivation for Service
11/6/16
Pastor Matt Wipperman

Focus:  Here we tackle the idea of greatness. What does it mean to be great? The answer is totally counter-cultural and not often grasped even by Jesus followers. Our culture promotes competition to determine greatness, but in the Kingdom, competition has no place. Instead, simple and mundane service to others aligns us with the mission of Jesus. Serving in His name glorifies God and ascribes greatness to Him. Main Text: Mt 20:28; Lk 22:22-47

lifeServe,part 5: Serving with Kingdom Perspective
10/30/16
Pastor Jeff Meyer

Focus:  Jesus not only came to save souls, but as the creator, sustainer, and reconciler of all things, to restore everything under His Kingdom reign. Jesus said of His mission, “I must preach the good news of the kingdom of God...because that is why I was sent.” The Kingdom good news is the restoration of all things. As Kingdom citizens and Christ’s ambassadors, this is our mission as well. We join God wherever He is working to restore everything sin has ruined. Jesus taught us that our mission always includes word and deed - preach the Kingdom and minister to the sick and oppressed. This is who we are as Kingdom citizens. Main Text: Lk 4:43, 9:2, 10:9; Col 1:15-20

lifeServe,part 4: Jesus: the Just Servant
10/23/16
Pastor Jeff Meyer

Focus Jesus outlined his mission on earth in Luke 4:16-21 and lived it out with a strategy of including the excluded; challenging cultural practices by dignifying the under-resourced and underserved at risk to His own reputation; and advocating for the hungry, sick and imprisoned. His work of justice, and now ours as His ambassadors of reconciliation, is to restore and reconcile all things to God. Main Text: Lk 4:16-21; Col 1:19-20; 2 Cor 5:18-21

lifeServe,part 3: Jesus: the Humble Servant
10/16/16
Pastor Jeff Meyer

Focus:  By washing the feet of His disciples, Jesus modeled that the Kingdom norm involves serving others, even those we lead. What a counter-cultural notion for North Americans! But it’s true! Jesus took the humble position of a slave when He became one of us. Thus, Paul encourages us to set aside our selfishness that we may think of others as better than ourselves and put their interest before our own. What does this mean in the day to day of our lives? Main Text: Jn 13:1-17, Phil 2:7b, Phil 2:1-4

lifeServe, part 2:Jesus: the Present Servant
9/30/16
Pastor Matt Wipperman

Focus:  Jesus did not serve from a distance. On mission to reconcile and restore all He created, Jesus emptied Himself of his heavenly status, sacrificially serving even to death for our sake. How deep the Father’s love for us! How vast beyond all measure! Our response? To empty ourselves for our neighbors’ sake, that they too will know the joy of confessing Jesus as Lord. Practicing “presence” with our neighbor is where it begins.

Main Text: Phil 2:7a

lifeServe, part 1: Introduction
9/26/16
Pastor Jeff Meyer

Serving is the ministry of “people building into the lives of people who build into the lives of people” (disciples who make disciples). Jesus did this with his disciples and so did Paul with the people he discipled. Serving is not just for vocational church workers* - all Jesus followers are ministers and gifted to build life into others through serving. Our gifts are used within the church to build up the body of Christ for service, and for those not-yet believers who we connect to life in Jesus. We serve not to earn our way to God’s grace, but in response to His grace freely given. Serving, as Christ served, is our response to Christ’s ultimate act of servanthood on the cross for our sake and brings glory to God. Main Text: 2 Tim 2:2; Eph 2:8