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LUKE: God's Heart for People

November 15, 2020 Speaker: Jeff Flanagan Series: LUKE

Passage: Luke 15:1–15:32

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You have no idea how much it means to me each week to be able to work through this music in preparation for Sunday. This strengthens my relationship with God. Thank you for the opportunity to serve doing something that I love. I am particularly excited as we work through the plans for Advent and Christmas worship. I want as many people involved as possible. Please reach out to me if you are available to help in any way during the holiday season.

I’m only sharing notes on two of the songs this week, but I hope that you will be able to take some time and listen to these songs and meditate on the texts as you prepare for worship this week.

  • Chris
Goodness of God

James 1:16-17

"16Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. 17Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change."

God is good all the time, and all the time God is good. Oh, how I desperately need to hear and say this these days. We can easily believe that God is all-powerful. We can easily believe that God is faithful. But here in this fallen world, sometimes it is difficult to remember that God is good. Even in the garden when Adam and Eve were able to walk with God, they forgot about His goodness and desired more. They saw, not what they had, but what they didn’t have.

Sometimes when confronted with an obstacle, I can get severely stuck. I simply turn inward to myself and it can turn into a downward spiral quickly. I think that I can find the way to make things better, but I forget that there is no goodness apart from God. Every good thing given, and every perfect gift comes from Him. When I finally get past myself and call out to Him, I realize that He has been there the whole time. I was the barrier. He is ready with everything I need, to provide clarity and comfort through whatever I’m facing. I don’t have to remain captive in me but can live freely in Him.

Listen to this song with full text here:

https://youtu.be/IvSuGyJQ6oM

Reckless Love

Matthew 18:12-13

"12And if he finds it, truly, I say to you, he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine that never went astray. 13So it is not the will of my Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish." 

When I read the scripture for this week (Luke 15), I immediately thought of this song, but I tried to avoid it and pick something else. I first heard this song a couple of years ago and liked most of it, but I was slightly put off by the use of the word reckless. How could God’s love be described as reckless? He is God!  Still, the more I looked for something else, the more this song stayed in my head. I picked up my guitar and sang through it, and knew I had no other choice.

Why "reckless"? If we look at the text of Luke 15, there is a lot of reckless behavior by worldly standards. The Pharisees saw Jesus as being reckless when He welcomed sinners and ate with them. The shepherd abandons 99 of his sheep to find just one lost sheep. The father runs out to his lost son and lavishes gifts on him. If we judge these actions by the world’s standards, they are nothing but reckless.

So, is God’s love reckless? We fight against Him, yet He left heaven so that we could know Him. We are not worthy, yet He went to the cross so that we could be reconciled with Him. We still cast away His blessings to go our own way, and He sends us more. I look at who I am, what I have done, and what I still do. I would have to say that God’s love for me is reckless, and that is overwhelming.

Listen to this song with full text here:

https://youtu.be/zsoV-oEkFcY

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