Getting Ready For Sunday: How to Prepare for Worship at Uptown, March 16

Getting Ready For Sunday: How to Prepare for Worship at Uptown, March 16

 I had a very active imagination as a child and because of this spent hours upon hours playing with plastic Army men.  I had a seemingly endless number of figures and, not content with the isolated one-off battle, set up full campaigns spread out across my home in the country. These campaigns would even consist of numerous theaters with naval bombardments on the shores of our lake, tanks rolling across the dusty plains around the barn, jungle patrols in the bamboo patch growing near the pasture, and Siberian maneuvers on the tiled floor of the kitchen. Though the scenarios were all different, my favorite Army man played the same role: General Harrison Ford, decorated war hero.  For a small town boy, these visions of grandeur were intoxicating. I probably spent as much time internally lauding my character for his strategic genius. 

Through maturity and circumstances, childhood visions of glory and renown are tempered and replaced with expectations that seem more realistic. Life throws curveballs that don’t line up with our plans, forcing us to settle for where we are rather than where we thought we would be. Though these lofty goals and dreams may be removed from our everyday life, we often pack these up and tuck them away in our heart, revisiting them every once and a while. Oftentimes we see these play out in our relationship with God. We begin to blame him for not giving us all that we wanted or expected. As long as these visions of grandeur remain dreams the blame festers and we draw away, neglecting time in Scripture or in prayer. 

This Sunday, we will look at Luke 10 and discuss what exactly it means to follow our king, Jesus Christ. As we look at the life of King Jesus, we begin to see that his rule and his kingdom is far different than any that we could conceive of. We desire honor and glory, but requires meekness and humility. We want to be served, but he calls us as servants. We want life on our terms, but he demands we accept his terms and lose our life. The blissful paradox of the Kingdom of Christ is that it is nothing like what we expect but is everything that we deeply desire. Rather than exalting ourselves on our own terms, we find that our glory comes from the glory of another and that through our union with Christ we participate in the same resurrection power that exceeds anything we can imagine on our own.  Through this, we come to realize that the reason this King is so different than all other is precisely because there is none like him. Christ is the creator of the universe, the orderer of all things, and the source of all goodness. He is the King of all kings and the Lord of all lords and because we are his, we can know a greater glory and honor that surpasses all we know. 

THE WORD

Scripture: Luke 10:1-24
Sermon: Following the King

SONGS

Come All Christians, Be Committed (arr. J.D. Goodwyne)
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Blessed Be Your Name (arr. Matt Redmond)
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The Power of the Cross (arr. Getty Music)
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Song of Preparation: Jesus, I My Cross Have Taken (arr. Indelible Grace)
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Song for the Supper: At the Lamb’s High Feast We Sing  (arr. Wen Reagan)

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Song of Response: Hear the Call of the Kingdom (arr. Getty Music)
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APPLICATION QUESTIONS

1. How does Scripture speak of the hardships that believers face on account of the Gospel? In light of your evangelistic practices, are these verses encourage or convicting? Moving forward, how might they inform how you share the faith?

2. In light of the previous question, how do victory and hardship intersect at the cross of Christ? How does his example lead us to think about victory in your life? In what ways should this shape the way you share your faith?

3. In what areas of your life do you struggle with pride? How has this affected your ability to share Christ with others? How might you pray for these areas to be conformed to the humility that Christ has demonstrated?

THE SACRAMENT OF THE LORD’S SUPPER

Was Christ’s body broken for us? Let us be deeply affected with the great love of Christ. Who can tread upon these hot coals, and his heart not burn? Cry out with Ignatius, “Christ, my love, is crucified!” If a friend should die for us—would not our hearts be much affected with his kindness? That the God of heaven should die for us—how should this stupendous mercy have a melting influence upon us! The body of Christ broken—is enough to break the most flinty heart. At our Savior’s passion, the very rocks cleaved asunder. “The rocks split apart,” Matthew 27:51. He who is not affected with Christ’s love—has a heart harder than the rocks! If Saul was so affected with David’s mercy in sparing his life, 1 Samuel 24:16, how may we be affected with Christ’s kindness who, to spare our life—lost His own! Let us pray that, as Christ was fastened to the cross—so may He be fastened to our hearts.

                                                                                                                                  – Thomas Watson

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