Mercy

As we continued our journey with the Psalms of Ascent, “Ascend,” this past weekend at Eastbrook, I opened up Psalm 130 for us. I explored the mercy of God as part of our spiritual journey with God in terms of prayer, forgiveness, waiting, and hope. In the midst of that I brought in the story of Jonah, illuminating parallel verses in Ephesians and Jude, an excerpt from Les Miserables by Victor Hugo, and a reflection on the life of Viktor Frankl.

You can watch the message and follow along with the sermon outline below. You can access the entire series at our web-site, through the Eastbrook app, or through our audio podcast. We also have a reading plan for this series, which you can participate with here.

 

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Community and Labor

This past two weekends at Eastbrook Church have been a real joy for me as two friends, Gabriel Douglas and Will Branch, preached as part of our journey with the Psalms of Ascent, “Ascend.

Gabriel walked us through Psalm 122, focusing on worship and community, two weekends ago.  Gabriel is a ministry resident working with me this year at Eastbrook. He preached a couple of summers ago in the midst of our series on Judges, “Flawed Heroes,” and I was really blessed by his message this time, “Community.” You can watch Gabriel’s message here.

Then, Will Branch took us into Psalm 127, opening the topic of humanity’s partnership with God in the labor we undertake. Psalm 127 is one of those interesting psalms that has two parts that at first glance seem nearly unrelated. The first part is about working and watching, while the second half is about children and our heritage. Will did a masterful job bringing the two parts together in a way that opened things up for all of us. Here’s Will’s message for your viewing pleasure.

You can follow the entire series at our web-site, through the Eastbrook app, or through our audio podcast. We also have a reading plan for this series, which you can access here.

Help

Continuing our journey with the Psalms of Ascent, we explored Psalm 121 this weekend at Eastbrook as part of our series, Ascend. In contrast to last weekend’s message, “Peace,” Psalm 121’s striking emphasis on the character and activity of God is so overpowering it is no wonder that it is many people’s favorite psalm. I walked steadily through the text in this message, drawing attention to God’s all-powerful help in every situation and season of life. As I drew to the end of the message, I focused on a four-stage exploration of the life of prayer.

Here is the video and sermon outline of this first message of the Ascend series, “Peace.” You can follow the entire series at our web-site, through the Eastbrook app, or through our audio podcast. We also have a reading plan for this series, which you can access here.

 

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Peace

We began our journey with the Psalms of Ascent, “Ascend,” this weekend at Eastbrook, spending time with Psalm 120. In this message, I explore themes of the spiritual life with God as a pilgrimage or journey, honesty and hopeful prayer, the need for community, and living in peace instead of hatred or hopelessness.

Here is the video and sermon outline of this first message of the Ascend series, “Peace.” You can follow the entire series at our web-site, through the Eastbrook app, or through our audio podcast. We also have a reading plan for this series, which you can access here.

 

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Ascend: a series on the Psalms of Ascent

 

This coming weekend at Eastbrook Church we enter into a journey through the Psalms of Ascent entitled “Ascend.” Our life with God is a journey. It is a journey with God, but also a journey with His people on the way to the eternal kingdom.  The New Testament describes God’s people as “foreigners and strangers on earth…looking for a country of their own” (Hebrews 11:13-14). Within the Psalms there is a soundtrack for this sort of journey known as the Psalms of Ascent. These ancient prayer-songs accompanied the pilgrimage to Jerusalem in times of celebration. Join with us as we explore themes of spiritual growth, life as pilgrimage, and the season of Advent in this series.

At a personal level, I am really looking forward to this series since I have found so much strength for my life with God from the Psalms and also by looking at our spiritual lives through the metaphor of pilgrimage with God. I hope you enjoy this journey as well!