This morning we celebrated the SANCTITY OF LIFE with Ginger Wilson of FIRST CHOICE MINISTRIES https://www.firstchoicerh.com/ and Elizabeth Dabney of Adult and Teen Challenge https://teenchallengetx.org/womens-programs/san-antonio-womens-campus/
Bill Stegemueller preaching at Medina United Methodist Church on, “Glorifying God in the Church,” Part 2 taken from Ephesians 4:7-12
Bill Stegemueller preaching a message entitled, “Glorifying God in the Church,” taken from Ephesians 4:1-6
It’s a new year with NEW opportunities.
As we come into a new year, I want to encourage us to GROW and not be content where we are as a church. We are taking some incredible momentum into 2020!
John Maxwell calls MOMENTUM a Leader’s Best Friend and points out that you can’t steer a ship that isn’t first moving forward. So my challenge for the new year is for us to keep moving forward using the momentum for 2019 to take us NEW places in 2020.
Paul in Philippians 3:12-14 gives a wonderful way to approach a NEW YEAR.
“Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:12–14, NKJV)
In Acts 2:17 it says, “I WILL POUR FORTH OF MY SPIRIT ON ALL MANKIND; AND YOUR SONS AND YOUR DAUGHTERS SHALL PROPHESY, AND YOUR YOUNG MEN SHALL SEE VISIONS, AND YOUR OLD MEN SHALL DREAM DREAMS.” Those days are here! We live in exciting times in terms of church history. There has never been so many opportunities to reach people with the Gospel as we have today. The harvest is truly plentiful.
I want to encourage you to prayerfully dare to dream big for 2020! I am convinced of the truth of Ephesians 3:20 that God is “able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.” I think a lot of times we sell God short. He’s waiting for us to step out in faith so that He can show us how big he really is! Let’s let 2020 be another great year in which we can say at the end, “Look at what the Lord has done!”
One of my major goals for this next year is to treat every Sunday as if it’s my last Sunday. I think a lot of pulpits in America have lost the URGENCY to win people to Jesus Christ. Therefore, I’m going to be INTENTIONAL about inviting people into a relationship with Jesus Christ. I invite you to be a part of this by PRAYING for the lost and bringing them to church. Also, remember that you too preach a sermon. I love what Augustine wrote, “Preach the Gospel always… if necessary, use words.” I encourage you to be intentional on how you live out 2020. People are watching you to see if what you claim you believe lines up with how you live. YOU can be the most power sermon someone ever hears!
Finally, I want to remind us of our MISSION at Medina United Methodist Church is to “Know Christ and to Make Him Known.”
Let’s continue to let God show us how BIG He really is.
Bill Stegemueller preaching at Medina United Methodist Church in a message entitled, “The Rest of the Story,” taken from Luke 1:26-38; 2:1-7
Bill Stegemueller preaching at Medina United Methodist Church on the “Cast of Christmas: Part 4 – The Magi” taken from Matthew 2:1-12
Bill Stegemueller preaching at Medina United Methodist Church on the “Cast of Christmas: Part 3 – The Shepherds” taken from Luke 2:8-20
Bill Stegemueller preaching at Medina United Methodist Church on the “Cast of Christmas: Part 2 – The Angels” taken from Luke 1 & 2 and Matthew 1.
A favorite Christmas movie is the kid’s move, “Home Alone.” It’s a comedy about a little boy named, “Kevin,” who, as part of a big family, is accidentally left behind when his family leaves for a European vacation. The comedy occurs as this little boy repeatedly messes up the plans of a couple of bumbling burglars by setting up all these wild traps.
What captured my attention was what happened on Christmas Eve as Kevin is all alone. He goes to church and meets an older man who is unhappy about family problems. As the two talk, Kevin admits feeling guilty because right before his family left he told his mom in a fit of anger, “I wish you would just go away!” and now he was missing her terribly.
The old man then said, “You’re in church now and this is the place to come when you’re feeling bad about yourself.”
He was right, wasn’t he? The church is the body of Christ and it would have never come into existence if it wasn’t for Christmas. It’s the place to come when we need comfort; when we need forgiveness; when we need strength; when we need direction; when we need a new start.
In 1939 a man named Robert May worked in the publicity department for Montgomery Ward stores. He was asked to come up with a new story for Christmas so he mixed two stories… the story of Santa Claus and the story of the Ugly Duckling and came up with a new story called, “Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer.”
You know why we like the Rudolph story so much, don’t you? Not just because it’s a cute story that was made into a catchy tune. No, we like this story because it’s about rising above defeat. It’s about turning a defeat into a victory. Rudolph was teased and taunted because of his red nose… but then in the end, he becomes the hero.
Jesus came into the world as a baby. He came into a world in which people felt down and out without any hope. But Christ came to give us hope and confidence that with Him nothing is impossible. He showed us from the manger to the cross that His love is the most POWERFUL and REDEEMING THING IN THE UNIVERSE… and that if we would simply believe and trust Him; nothing can defeat us.
This Christmas I invite you to come and let us adore the one who is able to give us abundantly beyond anything we can think or imagine (Eph 3:20) and in His presence let us receive the ultimate healing that comes from His grace.