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Your Church Service Doesn't Need a Scoreboard

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Nowhere in the Bible does God tell us to rate every church service we attend. Spiritual growth doesn't happen only when our opinion of a worship service reaches a nine or ten out of a perfect ten. 
In every service, there's something for each one of us. There's a priceless piece of application. There's a truth we've not previously uncovered. There's a godly emotion experienced because of some incredible lyric sung or because of a hauntingly beautiful string struck in a worship set. 
And what about the people at church? God uses people in the hallways, too. How many times have you had an interaction with someone who smiled or listened or prayed for you and it changed your day, maybe it changed your life? 
Stop looking for the "performance" to be amazing and start looking for all the many ways God is going to encourage you and bless you on Sundays. 
Your pastor doesn't have to preach like Charles Spurgeon or Billy Graham. He doesn't have to be eloquent of speech or as funny as Jerry Seinfeld. If he's not wearing cool pants and the latest designer shirt, who cares!
Ask yourself this question, "Why am I going to the church I'm going to?" Is it because it's cool, or is it because God's working there?
Your worship pastor doesn't have to wear skinny jeans and a scarf to be an awesome worship leader. He or she doesn't have to sing like Celine Dion or Bon Jovi. 
Do we want excellence? Yes. Do we need perfection? No. Absolutely not. Mostly, we need God to move. We need God to work. That's what we need. We need God's glory to come down. 
Stop waiting to decide to grow personally or to be moved or massively challenged only if the church service was a nine out of ten. If your church is pointing to Jesus, then God is working.
So, look for it next time. Look for the power of God in every nook and cranny on Sunday mornings. It's there. And God's going to change your life in some small way or even in a very large way every single Sunday
You Are Loved!

You're the Most Influential Preacher in Your Life

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Nobody preaches to you more than you. Every single moment of the day you press a thought into your mind. You cram doctrine down your throat. Your heart is fed truths and untruths by you, mostly you. 

So, what are you preaching to yourself? Is it old material from the past? Are you borrowing the negative sentiment of an enemy and preaching her scathing words to your soul?

Listen, you need more grace when you talk to yourself. Your self-imposed sermons need to be seasoned with the understanding that you are favored as a son or daughter of the Living God. 

So, try adding these loving truths to your personal pulpit: 

Preach to Yourself That God is For You: Romans 8:31-36, What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword

Preach Grace to Yourself: In Christ, you're forgiven. You're totally forgiven. As human beings, we don’t always know how to see someone totally forgiven as God sees them as totally forgiven, and so we have to learn to, by faith, trust that God sees us in a way in which we don't always see ourselves. You are totally forgiven and God doesn't hold your sin against you any more. Here's a great verse: Isaiah 43:25, I, I am he who blots out your transgressions for my own sake, and I will not remember your sins.

Preach Process: The Christian life is a process. It's a process of making progress. You're going to disappoint the Lord, yourself, and others some times. You know what, you're going to learn from it and God's able to forgive you. Move on. Be encouraged by this verse in Philippians 1:6, And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.

The Bible is preaching grace to us. Learn from that. Be encouraged by it. Start talking to yourself in the way that God speaks to you. 

You Are Loved!