Aug 23, 2015
“Best Day Ever” – Speaker: Patrick Barber
Series: (All)
8.23.2015
"Best Day Ever"
By: Patrick Barber
Scripture: Hebrews 12:18-29
We have such an abundance of riches in America that it might be hard to answer this question, but let's try: What was your best day ever?  Some of us have lived long enough that it might be hard to pick one moment or one day that stands out above all the rest. Getting married? Having kids? Landing your dream job? Getting that first kiss?  Watching the Chiefs win a Super Bowl (well, there's always this year, right?) No matter what the event was that gave you the greatest joy in your life, the point is that we've all had some incredible moments. But none of them--and I can say that with certainty--are as valuable and as full of potential for joy as when God opens the doors of his kingdom to us. Life in the kingdom of heaven is unlike any other path we can take. It isn't the easiest path or the most glorious in the eyes of the world. But it is the best. Jesus said as much, and we're going to talk about the implications of that this morning! I'm glad you're here.
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  • Aug 23, 2015“Best Day Ever” – Speaker: Patrick Barber
    Aug 23, 2015
    “Best Day Ever” – Speaker: Patrick Barber
    Series: (All)
    8.23.2015
    "Best Day Ever"
    By: Patrick Barber
    Scripture: Hebrews 12:18-29
    We have such an abundance of riches in America that it might be hard to answer this question, but let's try: What was your best day ever?  Some of us have lived long enough that it might be hard to pick one moment or one day that stands out above all the rest. Getting married? Having kids? Landing your dream job? Getting that first kiss?  Watching the Chiefs win a Super Bowl (well, there's always this year, right?) No matter what the event was that gave you the greatest joy in your life, the point is that we've all had some incredible moments. But none of them--and I can say that with certainty--are as valuable and as full of potential for joy as when God opens the doors of his kingdom to us. Life in the kingdom of heaven is unlike any other path we can take. It isn't the easiest path or the most glorious in the eyes of the world. But it is the best. Jesus said as much, and we're going to talk about the implications of that this morning! I'm glad you're here.
  • Aug 16, 2015“What Makes Your Garden Grow?” – By: Patrick Barber
    Aug 16, 2015
    “What Makes Your Garden Grow?” – By: Patrick Barber
    Series: (All)
    8.16.2015
    "What Makes Your Garden Grow?"
    By: Patrick Barber
    Scripture: Matthew 13:10-17
    We have a lot of great gardeners at East Point, but I'm not one of them.  I've tried to grow vegetables, but I clearly don't know what I'm doing.  You'd think it wouldn't be that hard.  I always thought you just needed dirt, seed, water, and sunlight and--boom--instant veggies.  Apparently not. So if you want vegetables, don't ask me.  We are starting an awesome community garden here at East Point, but have no fear, I'm not the one in charge of that project.  But that's a story for another day.  I just brought up all this garden stuff because today we're talking about a parable of Jesus that gardeners would really dig.  It's found in Matthew 13, and it teaches us something critical about our lives, our faith, and our future.  Unlike some passages in Scripture, this parable has something that applies to every one of us, so I'm glad you're here, and I hope you have ears to hear the word of the Lord.
  • Aug 9, 2015“Watch and Learn” – By: Patrick Barber
    Aug 9, 2015
    “Watch and Learn” – By: Patrick Barber
    Series: (All)
    8.9.2015
    "Watch and Learn"
    By: Patrick Barber
    Scripture: Isaiah 5:1-7
    I am the firstborn in my family and have one younger sister. Being the firstborn has some privileges, but it also means that you have to figure out a lot for yourself. I mean, who knew that I wasn't supposed to turn the dryer on with my little sister in it? I never heard my parents tell someone not to do that. Or who knew that magic markers weren't intended for the walls of my bedroom? It looked good to me at the time. But life was a little different for my sister. There were a few things she learned just by watching me and then paying attention to the reaction of my parents. Not surprisingly though, she would end up making some of the same mistakes I made along the way. That's just the way we are. Even when we see where others have gone wrong, we so often do the same thing. It isn't smart, but it's common. We've all been there before. At some point we really need to grow out of that. Magic marker can be painted over. Dryer doors get kicked open. Our role as servants and missionaries in God's kingdom, however, can be lost at horrific cost. We see in Scripture how ancient Israel forgot that it's privileged election meant that it had a special mission to be God's blessing to all the world. Jesus told his own people that their lack of faithful ministry meant that they would lose their position in the kingdom, and God would find others who would be faithful servants. And here we are as the younger siblings in that story. Have we really learned anything, or are we making the same mistakes all over again?
  • Aug 2, 2015“Live By Faith” – By: Patrick Barber
    Aug 2, 2015
    “Live By Faith” – By: Patrick Barber
    Series: (All)
    8.2.2015
    "Live By Faith"
    By: Patrick Barber
    Scripture: Romans 1:16-17
    “Faith” is such a frequent and prominent word in Scripture that you’d expect all believers to readily agree what it means, but if you read much in the way of Christian literature or listen to many different preachers you’ll find that the meaning of “faith” isn’t as neat and tidy as we might think. Those whom God inspired to write the collected writings that we call the Bible frequently used the word “faith,” but they didn’t always use it with the same meaning in mind, and they never made an attempt to fully define the word for us. Hebrews 11 begins with, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Even that, however, is more description than definition. Part of our challenge is that “faith” is a word with many nuances. Does it mean “belief?” Yes. Well, I thought it meant “trust?” Sure, it means that, too. And what about obedience and action? Aren’t those concepts wrapped up in the biblical meaning of faith? Sure they are. Faith isn’t just something that we think, and it’s not merely something we feel. Faith is also something we do. This morning, we’ll look at a well-known Old Testament story that demonstrates what full faith is. Then, with God’s help, I hope we’ll choose to live every day in ways that reveal faith to the world around us.  
  • Jul 26, 2015“Teach Us to Pray” – By: Patrick Barber
    Jul 26, 2015
    “Teach Us to Pray” – By: Patrick Barber
    Series: (All)
    "Teahc Us to Pray"
    By: Patrick Barber
    Scripture 1 Chronicles 29:10-22
    When You Need To Talk
    Part of my ministry involves pastoral counseling, which gives me the opportunity to listen to people as they talk about all sorts of problems, challenges, and heartaches. In my training, I was taught to avoid the urge to give too much advice. Instead, I was told to focus on being a good listener. I'll admit that sometimes it's hard to just listen. On occasion, there seems to be such an obvious path forward for people that I want desperately to interrupt them and say, "Well why don't you just...?" But that approach typically only provides short-term relief--for them and for me. And none of us are really satisfied with short-term relief; we want to experience long-term progress and full recovery. We can usually find those things if we're willing to work for it, and the beginning of the process involves admitting our needs and talking to someone who can help. I am available if you ever need to talk, but there is another who you cannot get well without, and He is the one we all need to talk to.
    7.26.2015
  • Jul 19, 2015“How to Persevere for the Long Run” – Speaker: Bob Rives
    Jul 19, 2015
    “How to Persevere for the Long Run” – Speaker: Bob Rives
    Series: (All)
    92a22a3c591a1e80e4e623684f9f2084
    "How to Persevere for the Long Run"
    By: Bob Rives
    Scripture: Jeremiah 9:23-24
    This September, there will again be a 5 kilometer (about 3.1 miles) race to benefit the Zimbabwe Orphans Project. Running races like these has become so popular that the City of Wichita now has to “ration” them because they result in street closings and require other support from the city. We’re fortunate to be among those permitted to have a race. For runners, distance races are always a study in perseverance. Winners are not only the swift but those conditioned well enough to keep running even when the body seems to say there might be something more fun to do. The word for that is perseverance, sticking to it, in other words. The longer the race the greater the need for perseverance. Sometimes just to be sure the runners are thoroughly tested a few obstacles are added on top of the distance. There is a race in Death Valley and another up and down Pike’s Peak, for example. These demand even more perseverance. For the Christian facing a long and sometimes difficult life, persevering means continuing to follow God’s word even when there are deserts or mountains in the road. Jeremiah, the ancient prophet who was sometimes called “the weeping prophet”, was one of many who did that. No matter how often he was knocked down by the officials of Jerusalem some 2,600 years ago, he continued to preach God’s word and to follow Him with his life. Today his willingness to stick to his tsk in the face of persecution is remembered by Jews, Muslims and Christians alike—a stout presence who showed the rest of us how to persevere.
  • Jul 16, 2015“Sharpen Your Saw” – By: Patrick Barber
    Jul 16, 2015
    “Sharpen Your Saw” – By: Patrick Barber
    By: (All)
    Series: (All)
    "Sharpen Your Saw"
    Scripture: Luke 10:38-42
    By: Patrick Barber
    When in Africa back in May, I made the mistake of only taking one shaving razor with me, and I was there for three weeks. Ouch. If it had been a straight razor, I could have sharpened it, but it wasn't. It was just the cheap disposable kind. My mistake was just not thinking about taking extra razors. I wasn't trying to be cheap or save packing space; I just didn't think about it. And that's how we usually put ourselves in rough spots, we just don't think about it. I doubt that any generation before us could claim a busier, more frenetic lifestyle than the one we live. I don't mean that we work harder or accomplish more than previous generations--in fact I think that we don't do either of those things. But we are busy all the time. We're running here and there with a phone in one hand and an energy drink in the other looking like the man in the circus trying to keep a dozen plates spinning atop their poles all at the same time. Eventually, the plates will fall and we will crash. When that happens, shaving with a dull razor is the least of our concerns. But it happens for the same reason that I spent two weeks with a dull razor--we just get so busy with today that we don't prepare for tomorrow. We try to run so far and so fast that we don't slow down to refuel, and then we end up empty. But it doesn't have to be like that. Jesus teaches us that there's a better way, if we'll slow down long enough to listen. We'll talk about that in today's sermon.
  • Jul 5, 2015“Freedom in Christ” – Speaker: Patrick Barber
    Jul 5, 2015
    “Freedom in Christ” – Speaker: Patrick Barber
    Series: (All)
    7.5.20152
    "Freedom In Christ"
    By: Patrick Barber
    Scripture: Galatians 5: 13-14
    I hope you've had a great Fourth of July weekend. Whether you spent time at the lake or at home, whether you shared the holiday with friends or alone, I imagine you saved some time to thank God for the blessings we have. Our political and religious freedom is a tremendous blessing.  Living in a free society isn't essential for our faith--because we obey God rather than man and would worship God even if the state forbade it--but it makes life much more comfortable. Freedom, though, is a double-edged sword. As we talked about last week, freedom from all constraints can lead to people simply following their own desires, and that is dangerous (see for yourself what Scripture says about that: Proverbs 12:15; 14:12; 30:12). If we think we're as wise as God and don't need his counsel, then we're fools--free fools, but fools nonetheless. And that's why freedom can be treacherous. The Apostle Paul taught the early church that Christ had set them free for freedom (Galatians 5:1), and that's great news, but it was a teaching that was often misunderstood and misapplied to daily living. Paul knew that could happen, so he tried to help the church understand that their freedom was not absolute. When Christ rescued us from sin and death, he freed us, but that doesn't mean we have no master. It means that our master now is God rather than sin. It doesn't mean that we live according to our own rules. It means that we now live according to the Spirit.  And this is freedom in Christ.
  • Jun 28, 2015“When We Become Gods” – Speaker: Patrick Barber
    Jun 28, 2015
    “When We Become Gods” – Speaker: Patrick Barber
    Series: (All)
    "When We Become Gods"
    By: Patrick Berber
    Scripture: 2 Timothy 3: 1-17
    Have you ever spent any time thinking about the changes you would make to this world if you were God? Maybe you’d end poverty or fix the environment or help the Chiefs win a Super Bowl--things that seem impossible without divine intervention. Or maybe you’d be less altruistic and simply make things better for yourself. There are all sorts of things we’d do for ourselves if we were completely in charge. But we aren’t God, and we will never be completely in charge. We do know that, right?
    I’m not sure that we do. I think that we as a society have become wealthy enough that we believe we’ve earned the right to worship ourselves. Some in our culture do that and are completely unapologetic about it. They flaunt their wealth or privilege and don’t even pretend to mask their over-indulgence and condescension. Others, however, are less aware of their idolatry. But if we looked at their schedules, their checkbooks, and their general lifestyle, we’d find plenty of evidence of self-worship. It’s rampant. We ourselves might even be infected with the disease and not even know it. But here’s something we’d better get straight: we are not God. There’s only one, and the position is occupied.
  • Jun 21, 2015“Gratitude” – Speaker: John Langley
    Jun 21, 2015
    “Gratitude” – Speaker: John Langley
    Series: (All)
    kids-4
    "Gratitude"
    By: John Langley
    Scripture: Philippians 4:4-9
    “Let us reflect gratitude for our fathers. Father is ever willing to sacrifice his own comfort for that of his children. Daily he toils to provide necessities of life, never complaining, ever concerned for the well-being of his family. This love for children, this desire to see them well and happy, is a constant in time of change.” - Thomas S. Monson It is time to give honor to whom honor is due. Today we honor you if you are a father or if you will be someday. God has chosen to work with you in specific ways to bring about His purpose. Making you a man gives you both, Special Privilege, and Awesome Responsibility. My Prayer is that you embrace the challenges that come your way to fulfill God’s purpose. Search Scripture. Search your heart. Search the archives of time. What you will find is that Dads make a difference. Go and make a difference that will last for eternity. Be a Dad!