Discipleship

|Discipleship
Joy is not found in our circumstances.
The Source of True Joy
Image: Unsplash

In Biblical times a person showed sorrow and suffering by putting on sackcloth. In Psalm 30:10–12, David describes how God had removed his sackcloth and exchanged it for joy:

“’Hear, Lord, and be merciful to me;
Lord, be my help.’

You turned ...

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How to cultivate love and root out weeds in your marriage.
Marriage Is Like a Garden
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Marriage is like a garden. It needs intentional care and cultivation. When weeds grow, they must be pulled up from the root immediately. If we don’t pull up weeds by the root they will continue to grow back, eventually overtaking and killing the garden.

So how do ...

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Three things to remember when the waters get rough.
What Do You Do When You Are in a Storm?
Image: Flickr

Sometimes life feels like being on a tiny, dilapidated boat in a big ocean in the midst of a giant storm. This feeling can be terrifying, as if impending doom surrounds us.

Unfortunately, sometimes life is like this.

Maybe your storm is being unemployed, and you’ve ...

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|Discipleship
Finding true purpose starts with understanding your identity in Christ.
What’s God’s Will For My Life?
Image: Erick Hodge

If I had a five-dollar bill for every time I’ve been asked, “What’s God’s will for my life?,” I would be a wealthy man. The frequency with which this question comes up gives insight into just how important it is to many people. They want to know, ...

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|Discipleship
The longer we hold on to unforgiveness, the longer we stay hurt.
Only Forgiveness Can Heal Us
Image: Unsplash & Erick Hodge

In Matthew 6:14-15, Jesus tells us to forgive because we have been forgiven. So, who have you not forgiven? Jesus challenges us to extend forgiveness, even when it is painful, because of the gift we have received.

Many of us have gone through difficult or even truly horrendous ...

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|Discipleship
When we are reminded that we are not home yet, Jesus’ grace is sufficient.
Constant Reminders
Image: Death to Stock

I celebrated my birthday last week, and as I have reflected on another year passing I know that I’ve lived an amazing life. I have lived the American Dream.

I was born to teenage parents and raised by my grandparents. Blessedly, I escaped poverty, drugs, gangs, and ...

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When you are in the shadow, look for the light.
Walking Through the Valley of the Shadow of Death
Image: Unsplash

The 23rd Psalm is one of greatest pieces of literature ever penned. But more importantly, it is also God-inspired scripture that flowed from the heart of King David during a dark, painful time in his life.

“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, ...

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When we accept each other, we give God glory.
Who Are You Accepting?
Image: Erick Hodge

When we accept each other and our differences, we give God glory. Romans 15:7 says, “Therefore welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God” (ESV). The foundation for this acceptance begins when we understand God’s acceptance of ...

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There is only one place to find true refuge and strength.
Where Do You Find Refuge?
Image: Unsplash & Erick Hodge

After each day of elementary school, I had to run home because of bullies who threatened me and because of a gang that lived in a house near my school. I knew that if I could just make it home, I would find refuge. I felt safe there because my older cousin would be at home ...

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Five ways to cope in a tough season.
When Winter Lasts Too Long
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Sometimes winter lasts too long.

The winter I speak of is not referring to the weather, but rather a season of life when pain, suffering, disappointment, confusion, and helplessness fall on you like snow on a cold, gray February day.

Sometimes life is like spring when ...

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How submitting to God sets you free.
Don’t Be a Slave to Your Circumstances
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In Romans 1:1, Paul says he is a servant to Christ. The word servant in that text is the Greek word doulas. This word means that I have a master and I am submitted to him, but in that submission, I am freer than I have ever been. All of us have been born into spiritual slavery. ...

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How to unlock the key to discipleship.
A Moment of Truth
Image: Derwin L. Gray

Each one of us will have several “moments of truth” that will alter the trajectory of our lives. For me, one of these defining moments came in 1998 when I had been a Christ-follower for about a year.

I was overwhelmed with condemnation.

I was marred by guilt.

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Remembering God’s love in the midst of deep trials.
How to Hold On When Everything Is Coming Apart
Image: Flickr

God hears the cries of his people.

God hurts when his people hurt.

God bottles every tear that his people have shed (see Ps. 56:8).

As we experience life, we will most likely know the feeling that “God is hiding his face” (see Ps. 30:7).

Perhaps it will ...

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|Discipleship
How a little healthy fear is a good thing for your faith life.
It’s Not ‘Pick Up Your Cross and Be Comfortable’
Image: Flickr

As Christians, many of us have fought hard to make our lives safe, predictable, and comfortable. We haven’t been afraid in a long time, and the presence and power of God hasn’t rested on us in a long time. When God calls you to do something, be afraid because ...

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|Discipleship
When we love like Christ, we make the world a better place.
Did I Love You Well?
Image: Death to Stock

When we are at the end of our lives, we won’t ask “Was my house big enough?” or “Did I make enough money?” But most likely we will ask, “Did I love you well?” All of us are longing for real love, and God wants to teach us to love ...

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We all need inspiration and transformation. The Creative Arts Team at Transformation Church takes a short snippet from my sermon each week to provide inspiration that leads to transformation. If these weekly videos inspire you, share them!

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