Being missional isn’t first about doing a whole bunch of new things but about doing what we already do with an eye toward blessing others. Well, there’s nothing we do more than talk. And that’s even more true if we include emails, texts, etc. But what are our intentions in all of those words, and what effect do they have? What if we took this thing that we do more than anything else and sought to bless others through it? What might it look like? How might God use t? And how can we become such a people?
Eating and drinking are among the most foundational and common things we do. But what if they point beyond themselves to redemptive realities and, as a consequence, are some of the most powerful missional habits we can develop?
If God answered all your prayers from this past week, how many people would have come to saving faith? How would people in your church have been blessed? How would your city be better? If we struggle to answer these questions, is it possible that our prayers are inadvertently deepening our self-centeredness rather than helping to free us from it? We reflect on these and other questions as we consider “missional prayer” in our latest sermon.
In Ephesians 2:10, Paul writes that we are God’s “workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” Similarly, in Titus 2:14, Paul writes that Jesus “gave Himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.” A central reason that God saved us so that we would be a people who zealously do good works. But how does God equip us to do those works? We consider this question and others in this week’s sermon.
A central part of our vision at Missio Dei is to love L.A. – the beautiful, glorious, and broken city where God has placed us and to which He has called us. But what does loving L.A. require of us? What does it mean for us to be a church not just in L.A., or even just for L.A., but with L.A.? How can we be a “counterculture for the common good?” To hear thoughts on these and other questions, you can listen to our sermon from this past Sunday, the 3rd in our Vision Series.
Before the Church is an instrument of God’s shalom, it’s meant to be a display of God’s shalom – a new community that reflects the love of God in its life together. But what would such a community look like? We wrestle with that question in the second sermon in our Vision Series.
A scholar once identified the “anxiety of emptiness and meaninglessness” as the root anxiety of the modern age. Whether that’s historically and sociologically accurate, the question of meaning and purpose is a universal human question that we all wrestle with. We all want to know that we matter. In the words of the acclaimed writer David Foster Wallace, “We are all dying to give our lives away to something.” But what should that something be? To hear thoughts on these and other related questions, you can listen to our sermon from this Sunday, the first in a 3-part series outlining our church’s vision.
How do we find contentment in the midst of disappointments and regrets? What’s the secret to happiness when we find ourselves in what feel like the cul-de-sacs or even the dead-ends of life?
Doubting is something that most Christians do not think you are permitted to express and work through, yet the Bible has multiple stories and situations where doubt seems to be a *part* of faith. What is doubt, and is it the enemy of faith? Are there any benefits of it? And how to work through times of deep uncertainty?
One of the recurring statements throughout the Psalms is the call to “Praise the Lord.” But why does God call us to do this? Is it because He’s some sort of insecure narcissist who needs to have His ego stroked? Shouldn’t whether I’m a good person or not be all that matters and not whether I praise Him or love Him? And besides, what about Him deserves my praise anyway?
The last 5 Psalms, 146-150, all begin with a call to “Praise the Lord.” The book of Psalms closes in a crescendo of praise. Among them, Psalm 146 calls us to praise God as a God who executes justice on behalf of the hurting and marginalized and, by implication, it calls us to be a people who work for justice. That call is central to what it means to be a follower of Jesus. But what is justice? And how can we stay committed to the work of justice for the long haul?
(Note: Due to technical difficulties, the volume is low for the first 6 minutes.)
According to Psalm 51:17, God will never turn away those with a broken spirit and contrite heart. But what exactly does that look like? And why is it, paradoxical as it may seem, the key to joy?
(Note: The Scripture reading before the sermon failed to record. The audio begins with the sermon itself.)
Suffering comes into our lives for many different reasons. Perhaps the most of horrific of these reasons is when encounter genuinely evil, sinister people who intentionally, repeatedly, and remorselessly harm others. What should we do when we encounter such people? And what hope does God provide if we’ve suffered greatly at the hands of such a person?
"Home" is one of the most powerful words in the English language. It’s more than a physical house. It speaks to a sense of welcome, belonging, identity, and safety. And the story of the Bible, of the Christian gospel, is that of humanity being created for home, having lost that home, spending our lives searching for home, and, in Jesus, being welcomed home. To hear more, you can listen to our sermon from this Sunday based on Psalm 105.
A screenwriter recently wrote an article for the LA Review of Books about why she attends church (Mass) every week. In her article, she describes church like this: "The things that I feel proud of can’t help me here, and the things that I feel embarrassed by are beside the point." In John 3, a man named Nicodemus who has everything going for him, including spiritually, approaches Jesus only to hear that nothing that he brings to the table is of any help when it comes to entering the kingdom of God. Instead, something miraculous must be done in and for him.
Psalm 46:4-7; 48; 122
Though God is present everywhere, it's within the Church - the community, not a building - where God is uniquely present in the world. So if we want to know and to draw near to God, we have to belong - not just attend but belong - to a church. To hear more about why that is and what that might look like, you can listen to our sermon from this past Sunday, "The City of God," based Psalms 46, 48, and 122.
(Note: This sermon was preached on Sun, 6/25. Due to a technical difficulty, the final several minutes failed to record.)
Psalm 15 wrestles with the question of what kind of person God invites into His presence. In the first of two sermons on this Psalm, we consider the issue of wholehearted devotion to God and its connection to wholeness as human beings. Check out this powerful message on our website!
The Psalms are quoted in the New Testament more than any other book of the Old Testament. And among the Psalms, none is quoted or alluded to by the NT more than Psalm 2. To hear what this pivotal Psalm tells us about Jesus and our relationship to Him, you can listen to our sermon from this Sunday.
The Declaration of Independence includes "the pursuit of happiness" among the unalienable rights granted to every human being. And we are a people who relentlessly pursue happiness. Yet, study after study shows that we're not a particularly happy people. So then what is the key to happiness? Psalm 1 provides an answer. To hear more, you can listen to our sermon from this past week.