I love my church family!
What a wonderful time of worship and prayer we experienced on Sunday at City Life.
I was planning to be away over the weekend and this week, but with the events taking place in our nation, I felt it best to stay close to home.
This week, I’m hammering out our continued plans to aggressively adapt to this new ministry environment.
My greatest concern is providing ministry to our church family during this new season.
I really do love my City Life family.
But there’s an even larger family I’m part of, and that’s the Family of God.
Look at what the Apostle John said:
“To all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God — children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.” (John 1:12-13 NIV)
When you get saved and accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior, something miraculous occurs.
You are literally BORN into a new identity.
You become a CHILD of God!
You are adopted into the most potent family in the universe.
God, Himself is your Father!
The God who created the universe has taken up residence within you and you have an identity that transcends your blood surname.
It’s interesting, but our fathers have a lot to do with the way we see ourselves.
But, since there is no perfect father on this earth, and if we are going to understand our purest form of identity, we need to get that identity from Father God!
From what I’ve seen in our culture in general, much of the time a dad is disconnected from his child, abusive, withdrawn, absent, or emotionally unavailable.
Many times if your interests do not align with your father’s interests, you feel isolated and in the dark.
You have his surname, but you may or may not feel deeply attached to your father.
In fact, most people have “father issues” of one type or another.
For some of you, your “father issues” are very painful. But, it’s no fault of your own.
Yet, our “father issues” make all of us great candidates for THE FATHER who CHOSE you.
He’s a Father who is perfect and can give you a stronger identity than the surname name assigned to you at birth.
I love my blood father.
I think he’s the best dad in the world.
In fact, I’ve invited my dad to come out here to Fort Worth to speak on Father’s Day.
But, as wonderful a dad he is, he didn’t choose me. I was simply born into his family.
God, on the other hand, is a Father who CHOSE me and allowed me to be born into HIS family.
God gave us the foundation we need to live an incredible life and even break free from our previous “father issues” that have crippled us.
Think about it. YOU are a child of GOD!
You are a part of God’s family!
You are BLESSED!
You are literally sons and daughters of God!
So, stop letting fatherlessness, a lack of an anchor, assigned identities, and personal pain dictate you who you are!
In God’s family, you have identity, purpose, calling and direction.
You’re in the family of Jesus!
His name breaks down walls.
His name demolishes strongholds in our lives.
The name of Jesus is the one we bring onto our Cultural Streets with grace, humility, and gentleness.
The name of Jesus can change mindsets and ways of thinking that have brought tragic consequences in your life and in the lives of your family and friends.
Jesus reverses evil.
Jesus brings hope.
Jesus never fails.
Jesus’ name is branded on my identity!!
Jesus holds all authority in heaven and on earth.
Jesus is the cornerstone and central pillar of City Life Church.
Jesus is the center of my life.
Jesus is the GIVER of life!
The name of Jesus can open doors, and close wounds.
The name of Jesus will keep you strong, secure and whole, even though you may have steered your life into the ditch and crashed because of your misjudgments, sins, and failures.
It is through the name of Jesus that you can find a new beginning, a new day, a new hope, a new life.
Your Father God loves you. He is on your side!
He is not counting how many times you’ve failed, and he doesn’t have a three-strikes policy.
He’s given you Jesus, who will lift you up again and again. In His name, is power!
The name of Jesus is:
- strong, yet tender
- fierce, yet gentle
- limitlessly powerful
Through Jesus, we have a legacy of power, possibilities, and purpose that we’ve barely tapped into.
The Apostle Paul tells us how to enter this amazing family:
“If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” (Romans 10:9 NIV)
Jesus is the name that allows us to make sense of our lives and this imperfect world.
Jesus is the name that gives us hope despite our many failures and shortcomings.
Jesus is the name that dispels darkness and brings light.
Jesus is the name of that transforms heartache into joy.
Jesus reverses death and brings life.
And I am not ashamed of His name, for I bear his name!
The name of Jesus means that you have hope.
The name of Jesus means that you have a future.
It means you don’t have to live in guilt, shame, and condemnation.
The name of Jesus means that you have another chance. And another, and another, and another chance.
The name of Jesus means that no financial disaster or war will be your final demise.
The name of Jesus means that no divorce, disappointment, disease, or personal failure will be your epitaph.
That’s the name I identify with. It’s my family name.
I’m proud to be a CHRISTIAN!