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Sermons from Jacobs Well Church - Thornton CO

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Struggle of a Leader

"Do not be afraid of them. Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes." -Nehemiah 3:14 “And I sent messengers to them, saying, 'I am doing a great work and I cannot come down.” -Nehemiah 6:3 Nehemiah encounters opposition to what God has called him to do. There are enemies outside of his people and within his people. People outside the people of God jeered and made fun of what he was trying to accomplish and within his own people, the rich were exploiting the poor. Nehemiah the leader had to do with plenty of conflict. It is the struggle of a leader. For us, we may or may not face open opposition to helping people find their way back to God. But most if not all of us are afraid of offending people or being labeled a religious fanatic if we do all we can to reach out to people spiritually. Our greatest struggle may be with our own fears of what “outsiders” will think of us. Other of us will have family members and friends who think we are taking this spirituality thing a bit too far. (One of the rules many people have is “don't talk religion!”) And there are always forces at work within a community of faith that have to be dealt with if we're going to be who God wants us to be. Our external focus on people finding their way back to God cannot be pursued to the exlcusion of the needs of people within our community in need. In this service, we'll help people identify and deal with their struggles to become the leader God meant them to be. Our focus will be on God's resources and greatness in dealing with our struggles, not our own. Nehemiah shows determination and perserverence and a willingness to sacrifice and pay whatever price he must pay to see Jerusalem's walls rebuilt.

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Vision of a Leader

Nehemiah is much more than a man with a heart for the things of God, he has vision for it: the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem was not just something he was supposed to do: it was the result of God's hand upon his life for good. The leader within Nehemiah had the vision of God's purposes not only for the city of Jerusalem but God's hand on his life to do him good. As he goes about the task, his heart for the city and people of Jerusalem gets directed into wise strategy to how best bring about accomplishing what God wants accomplished. His vision includes wise strategy in various forms to get the walls built. Each of us need that vision of our own lives and the lives of the people around us who are far from God: that they need to find their way back to God and that God has called us to help that happen and its not a rule or a duty or an obligation or what good Christ-followers do: God's hand is on our lives and on our church to help people find their way back to Him and it is the ultimate good God could bring from our lives. What's more important than being a part of someone's life being changed now and forever? That's the vision of a leader.

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The Leader Within

Nehemiah hears of the state of the city of Jerusalem (which was the very center of God's covenant with His people) and he is devastated. It's not that it just happened; Jerusalem had been in bad shape for years and years; he'd no doubt heard about it before, but this time it just hits him and it breaks his heart. He weeps and fasts and mourns for days. What broke within him was the heart of a leader. In God's kingdom, leaders' hearts break for the things that break the heart of God. And his broken heart includes repentance for the people's sin against God. In this service, we'll help people get a fresh look at the needs of the 67 that THEY know, the lives of people that are broken down and need repair, people who need to be brought into covenant with God. Nehemiah sets about using his influence and his own wealth from his respected and lucrative job as cupbearer to the king to do all he could to see that Jerusalem's walls (which were essential for it being the city of God that it was meant to be) to be rebuilt. What influence has God given us? How can we use it for Him in helping people find their way back to Him? And most importantly, are we broken-hearted over the plight of people far from God and are we willing to repent for how we've so often just gone about our lives without much care for people who are far from God?

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Why Does God Allow Suffering

Why does God allow suffering?

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What Does God Say About Homosexuality?

It's a tough issue in our culture. What does God say about homosexuality - not what do his followers say in His name, but what does HE say, and how are we to react?

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