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2020-03-08 Message- From Night to Light

By Intersections, Sermons

On Monday night, March 9, our Jewish friends and neighbors begin celebrating the fun festival of Purim. It commemorates the salvation of the Jewish people in the ancient Persian Empire from evil Haman’s plot “to destroy, kill and annihilate all the Jews, young and old, infants and women, in a single day,” as recorded in the book of Esther. Haman is the villain in the story. God brings the light of deliverance through the hero, Queen Esther!

Whatever villain you name, that villain will likely be living in some way in the dark. From history, we recall the darkness around Joseph Stalin, Adolf Hitler, and Saddam Hussein. We know of characters like Dracula, The Joker (of Batman lore), The Phantom of the Opera, Voldemort (of Harry Potter fame), Gollum (of JJR Tolkien’s fantasies) and The White Witch (of C. S Lewis’ Narnia Chronicles).

None of these villains can successfully live in the light of day, due to the darkness of his or her soul. The metaphor of darkness echoes the state of one’s inner being.

This week, come to the Light at Cold Spring Church as we visit a man named Nicodemus diwho, while in the darkness, meets the Light of the World in Pastor Kevin’s message, From Night…To Light. Just a step into the light is all that’s needed. Just step closer, and your fear, doubt, and shame will be no more.

Here are your Micro-Steps in Faith for this week:

  1. When have you been forced to let go of control? What did you discover as a result?
  2. Think of a villain. Did that villain finally see the light? How did that happen? And if not, why not?
  3. How did you come to know Jesus? How has your understanding changed over time?
  4. Look at the other passages in the Bible where Nicodemus appears: John 7:50-51 and John 19:38-39. What do you learn about Nicodemus when you read these additional passages? Did he find the Light?

2020-02-23 Message- All the Light We Need To Listen

By Intersections, Sermons

Sometimes we need better light light to help us see where we are. But the risk is that the light will reveal what we are afraid of, or what we didn’t know was there. While we can resist the light, remain hunkered down in our own shadows, God loves us too much to stay there with our limited vision. The hope is that true light will reveal a way forward, a new path, opportunities that for too long had been hidden. The disciples of Jesus were stuck in shadows, paying attention only to what was right in front of them. So Jesus invited them to an experience. An dazzling experience like no other.

To learn and grow, spiritually, mentally, and physically, we need to be open to new inputs. But sometimes our biases and prejudices, our attitudes and habits, can get in the way of authentically seeing and hearing what’s in front of us. That’s why Jesus took his friends up the mountain. So just for a moment, and just long enough, can we suspend belief, suspend our “we know it all” positions to truly see and hear and consider truth?

Why did Jesus take the disciple up that mountain that day?
They needed to know something…. Really know it to trust it. Actually, to know the real Jesus, not just the healing Jesus, the miracle worker Jesus, the leader Jesus. But know Jesus in his essence… he is God. And knowing he is really, really God in person, how does that’s truth inform our life?

Like Moses, like Peter, James, and John, we can get an unobscured sense of God’s glory, Jesus’ light, to shine in the face of our failings. And dispel any misunderstandings about who Jesus is and who God is and who others are and who we are. That would be something! That possibility is available for all of us this week as we gather in worship and are transported to a place of realignment, recalibration, refocus, even revelation in Pastor Kevin’s message from Matthew 17, the Light we Need. Could our assumptions be transfigured right along with Jesus?Find out by listening to this message!

2020-02-09 Message- Your Light Matters

By Intersections, Sermons

In his book “You Are What You Love, The Spiritual Power of Habit,” James K. Smith says that we are what we love, and that we all live and long for a social vision of what we think society should look like. Cold Spring Church believes that everyone deserves to experience God’s love firsthand, and when they do, the entire neighborhood can be transformed! What is your social and spiritual vision?

Jesus came to fulfill the law, not abolish it. We proclaim Christ crucified, and that means we preach grace, mercy, forgiveness and sacrificial love, humble service, reconciliation, and redemption. We will never get every aspect of God’s law right. We will fail miserably at following Jesus. We will neglec the social vision God desires and, with the Spirit’s help, the kingdom we crave, too.

This week, Pastor Kevin invites us to put Jesus’ love into action as we pass the salt and turn on the light, each a transformational gesture our neighborhoods desperately needs to truly live. Your Light Matters this week, at Cold Spring Church!

This week’s Actionable’s:

  1. What do you pay attention to day in and day out? What do you ignore? Are there people and issues, places and things, God may be calling you to notice, shine a light on in Christ’s name?
  2. What do you love? What kingdom vision are you working toward?
  3. If you were to describe to someone unfamiliar with the Gospel what it means to be the light of the world and the salt of the earth, what would you say?  

2020-02-09 Message for Kids- Your Light Matters

By Intersections, Sermons

When you move in a dark room or space, what do you need to see? Right! Light! Flashlights are way cool. But did you know that every day as you move through life, you have a powerful light that is better than any flashlight you could carry? Yes! It’s your inner light! A light that never dims and a light that God put there to show you the way. Jesus is the Light of the World… and we can sense his presence in our life, be open to God’s action in our life, and by listening to God’s word that lights our path, and your family and the family here at Cold Spring Church, you will always be heading in the right direction… toward the Light that is Jesus! So let your light shine! Your light matters.

2012-12-02 Message- The Lion and the Lamb in Advent Light

By Sermons

Stretching for the limits? Is our faith experience a collection or facts, or a collection of connections? Life connections. When Jesus calls you and says, Follow me, are you ready to passionately just get up and follow, or do most of us just hold back a little because thats how we were taught. The Lion of Judah is leading into a future of hope. Let’s invest in that journey! Let’s try an experiment. Stretch your right arm up as far as you can. Now, reach further. Wow. Thanks. Did you notice that almost everyone reached further when asked. Why didn’t you reach at that far at the beginning? You can blame the inventor of the #2 pencil. We are not standardized, interchangeable parts on an assembly line of living. Do you know why the earliest teacher’s colleges were called Normal Schools? Because that’s all they expected!  They wanted everyone to be normal. But look around you this morning. Do you see normal? Of course not! Each one of us has that same inner light of Christ that shines in its own uniquely faceted beauty.

Who are you looking for this morning? A Lion or a Lamb? The Lion of Judah has your back. In fact, he’s leading you forward and you can be confident that Jesus the Lion of Judah will protect you into the future, though the future is uncertain and the sun and moon above may fall from the sky!

Jesus is also the Lamb of God that takes away the sins of the world. Maybe you need to meet the Lion. Or, the Lamb. Either way, let’s not hold back with that what we have been taught in school since the early 1900’s. Following Jesus is not done with a standard #2 pencil, as we answer standardized multiple-choice questions, so we can be the next interchangeable part for an assembly line called church. No! Church is not for normal people. You are not “standard!”

The Lion roars its invitation to a future of hope despite the sky falling and the uncertainties that abound! The Lamb has forgiven you of your past and freed you to live your very best self right now, and into the future. So let’s get up and go this Advent season. The light of Hope shines brightly and I can’t wait for what’s next!

2012-12-02 Message for Kids- Your Inner Advent Light

By Sermons

Why do we light our Advent Wreath Candles? Because it helps us to remember that God’s light is always present in our lives, every day. God offers us a dependable light, the light of Jesus Christ. This light, though, is not just in the five candle here in our worship center, no. The light of Jesus in within you. And you. And you. How do you know? Deep inside, no matter how we feel, no matter our mood. Sad or glad. Fearful or Courageous. The Light of Christ is within to give us hope. Hope that is brighter than any darkness. This week, remember that Jesus is your light.