A Cross-Shaped Life

The greatest movies are usually about love.  No, I'm not talking about passionate desire and romance - though that stuff definitely has its place. I'm talking about the power of redemptive, self-giving love. Take this year's academy award nominees for example.  In The Descendents, George Clooney plays a father who must stop being the “back up parent” and start being a real father to his two daughters in the wake of a family tragedy. In The Artist, a washed up silent movie star is saved from ruin by the very woman who he helped to make famous. In The Help, a white woman is willing to lose her standing in the community as well as her boyfriend in order to write about the racist way that black housekeepers are treated in her home town.  Of course the sacrifice that these women make in order to tell their stories is even greater. Redemptive love and self-sacrifice is not just a popular movie theme…it’s the most powerful theme in human history.  We’ve been looking at John’s signs of genuine Christian faith in his first letter; and the seventh of these life signs from 1 John 3: 11-24 is a cross-shaped life…because our love for others should reflect the humility and sacrificial love of Christ.  Click this link to download.

A Life of Boundless Hope

The foundation of our hope in Christ is not not limited by our family history, the size of our bank account, our intellectual ability, the list of our accomplishments, or any other cause for human boasting, but upon God's infinite wisdom and unshakeable love for us in Christ.  That's why we're calling the sixth "Life Sign" of genuine Christian faith from 1 John 3: 1-3, a life of boundless hope.  Click this link to download.

A Life of Confidence (to the End)

John’s letter was written to help us recognize some clear signs of true Christian faith. The fifth of these signs is from 1 John 2: 18-28, what we might call, “A Life of Confidence (to the End)."  I read a “Worst Case Scenario Survival Handbook” that explains how to survive various life or death situations.  How to escape from quicksand. How to survive a gunshot wound. How to escape a submerged car.  How to survive a shark or bear attack etc.  Not surprisingly, there’s no chapter on, “How to survive death” or “How to prepare for the End of the World.”  John reveals why we can have confidence to the end of our lives; the day Christ returns, or calls us home.  Click this link to download.