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From the Pastors at Joy

Post Category: Christian Living

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Your Smartphone -- Ten Diagnostic Questions

In his 2017 book, 12 Ways Your Phone Is Changing You, author Tony Reinke writes: ...

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Is It OK to Love My Life?

There is a big difference between thankfulness for what God has given us and sinful idolatry. How do we know that difference?...

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Savoring Psalm 119 in 2017

Preaching on Psalm 119 this past week was a very rich experience for me. By God’s grace, studying the Scriptures in preparing to preach is something I deeply enjoy. But I can recall few times where I have been more moved and impacted personally by the text I am studying than I was this past week from exploring Psalm 119 in its entirety....

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Two Years ago I preached a sermon from the book of Philippians on working out a gospel culture at Joy Community Fellowship. One of the men who has been instrumental in my thinking about the idea of a gospel culture is Ray Ortlund, lead pastor of Immanuel Church in Nashville Tennessee....

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The Christian and Government Part 2 - Submission and Prayer

When reading through the New Testament, there are a couple undeniable truths about the relationship between Christians and the government they are under....

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Reading the Bible in 2015

As a new year dawns on us, I want to again take the time to encourage you to give yourselves to the regular habit and discipline of reading the Scriptures daily. Last year as a church we used a reading plan that took us through the New Testament over the course of the year. I’d like to encourage us to a bit more this year, though I’m mindful that no one plan is going t...

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Look! A Distraction!

We are distracted. We are so distracted, and so accustomed to it, that after a while we almost become distraction. We lose the ability to be still. We fear the quiet. We are intimidated by the moments where there is nothing to look at, nothing to do....

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The Missional Impact of Worship

I closed last Sunday’s sermon with a personal illustration of how I attempted to bring the two principles from Psalm 103 that we considered (David’s determination to worship, and the ground of his determination) to bear on my own life. Let me give another illustration, which will lead right into the third point of my sermon, which I omitted and said I would r...

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Practical Tools for Extended Scripture Memorization

Last week I was challenged by these words from John Piper: “What would your ministry be like, if it were led by folks who memorized whole books of the Bible?” With the question, there was a link to an article written by Jon Bloom titled, Ten Reasons to Memorize Big Chunks of the Bible....

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When Life Doesn't Make Sense

One of the most challenging aspects of living a life of faith in Jesus is how to make sense of the innumerable pains and heartaches we experience in this fallen world. No matter how many times we quote Romans 8:28, it’s just hard to believe sometimes that an infinitely good, all-powerful God is governing even the tiniest details of our lives. ...

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A Morning Meeting with God

In fourteen years as a Christian, nothing has been more instrumental in my walk with God than hearing Him speak to me in the pages of Scripture. It breaks my heart that so many people who bear the name “Christian” give so little attention to feeding on the rich nourishment of God’s Word, especially when Jesus said that those who are truly His disciples ...

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A Painful Lesson in Love

I don’t have to tell you that it’s been a long winter, so as the weather warmed up last week, I was eager to get back to my regular walks to my office in the Hope House, and back. It’s a 10-15 minute walk, and I’ve come to really enjoy those few minutes: I’ll pray, or listen to music, or recite a passage of Scripture that I’ve mem...

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The Most Important Thing You Bring to Your Life Group

Life Groups are where the life of Joy Community Fellowship takes place. They're how we experience what it means to be the Church in the midst of ordinary, everyday life. While we treasure our weekly gathering on Sunday mornings, the vision for church life and discipleship depicted in the Scriptures seems far more intimate and frequent than could be experienced by simply at...

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Why Become a Church Member?

Why do we encourage the practice of church membership? Is it really a necessary, important part of the Christian life? There is no biblical command to become a church member, is there?...

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A Simple Missional Idea

A simple missional idea from Seth McBee....

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The Church-Killing Sin of Gossip

Kent Hughes shares wise insights about how to respond to hearing gossip....

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Making Disciples in the Everyday, Week #1 Notes

Notes for Sunday night's training session: Living in God's Story. Making Disciples in the Everyday, week 1 of 6....

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Grace-Driven, Spirit-Empowered, Faith-Fueled Work

The apostle Paul calls to work out our salvation (Philippians 2:12), but we are not left to ourselves. The work he calls us to is grace-driven, Spirit-empowered, faith-fueled work. What does that mean?...

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A Gospel Primer

What does it really mean to "apply the gospel to every area of life"?...

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Productive Delay

Paul Tripp: "For the child of God, waiting isn't simply about what I'll receive at the end of my wait...Waiting is fundamentally about what I'll become as I wait."...

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Your Emotions are a Gauge, Not a Guide

Jon Bloom from Desiring God writes: God designed your emotions to be gauges, not guides. They're meant to report to you, not dictate you....

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Taking an Ugly Thought Captive

You're going through your day and a though comes that your daughter is going to die soon. Your heart begins to be filled with fear and worry. What do you do?...

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Fighting the Fight of Faith

If underneath every sin is a failure in the moment to believe the truth about God, what are some key truths to help me make war on sin and unbelief?...

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The Gospel & Road Rage

How does faith in Christ lead us to kill the sin of anger, especially that common form of anger we call "Road Rage"? ...

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The 4 G's

In his book You Can Change, Tim Chester highlights four life-changing truths which underlie all our struggles with sin: 1. God is I don't have to be in control. 2. God is I don't have to fear others. ...

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Why I'm Tweeting Again

For around three years I've been fascinated by Twitter. It may be the journalist in me, but there's something intriguing to me about trying to say something meaningful and memorable in 140 characters. When I read these words from John Piper awhile back, they really resonated with me: The sovereign Lord of the earth and sky Puts camels through a needle's eye. And if ...

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Forgiveness & Reconciliation

My friend Jason Tyrell preached an excellent message yesterday morning from Luke 6 on loving our enemies. Those who want to think through in more depth on how to love our enemies, and how to see relationships heal that have been fractured, may be helped by this article from Tim Keller. ...

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