Welcome to Our Growth Center

Our little corner of the internet dedicated to helping you grow spiritually.

Welcome to Our Growth Center

Our little corner of the internet dedicated to helping you grow spiritually.

  • Focus: The Key to Unlocking Destiny
    December 13, 2018
    Blog
    Jesus said, “The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light” (Matthew 6:22).  In the context, He’s talking about the importance of focusing on God and His Kingdom.  He says later that if we’re single-minded in our pursuit of God, everything else we’re worried about will come to us (Verse 33). This teaches us the power of priorities and keeping God in first place. It also teaches a broader truth about how focus enables us to walk in our destiny. Jesus is saying, “You really can’t focus...
  • The Wonder of the Incarnation
    November 29, 2018
    Blog
    About 2000 years ago a miracle happened. We celebrate it on Christmas. I’ve loved Christmas since I was a kid.  We got to sing special songs, unwrap presents, and on Christmas Eve, we held candles and tried not to burn the church down. For a long time, I think I missed the main point.  I’m not talking about forgetting about Jesus and embracing commercialism. That’s certainly a problem, but I understood all that. I missed what made the birth of Jesus so miraculous.  I thought the biggest miracle was the virgin birth. That’s huge, and I’m not diminishing it at all,...
  • What Does Romans 8:28 Actually Mean?
    November 14, 2018
    Blog
    “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28 My wife and I enjoy the show Master Chef.  It’s about home cooks competing to produce top restaurant quality meals. They’re judged by professional, celebrity chefs like Gordon Ramsey. One of the common competitions on the show is the “Mystery Box Challenge.” Each contestant is given a box full of a mystery ingredient that they must then use to create a gourmet meal.  What makes it challenging is that the ingredients are often difficult to use, or just...
  • The Importance of Believing in Miracles
    November 8, 2018
    Blog
    Do you believe in miracles? By that I mean, do you believe that the laws of nature can be violated by a supernatural God who intervenes in human history?  What we believe about this is more important than you might think and is influenced heavily by our collective history. A side effect of the Reformation was that large swathes of Protestantism eventually rejected belief in all supernatural phenomena. This rejection, in conjunction with the Enlightenment, gave rise to Christian Liberalism (not political liberalism). Liberal theology denies all miraculous phenomena and sees the stories in the Bible as moral parables that teach us...
  • Past, Present, and Future Sins are Forgiven
    October 18, 2018
    Blog
    Did you know that all your sins, past, present, and future are already forgiven? That may seem like a radical statement. How can God forgive sin we haven’t even committed yet? In Hebrews 10, the author of Hebrews contrasts the Old and New Covenants. In verse 11 he says, “And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftetimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins.” He’s saying that under the Mosiac Law there were many sacrifices that were offered over and over again, every day and every year.  These sacrifices renewed the covenant, but they never actually took away people’s...
  • Free Will in the Creation Story
    October 10, 2018
    Blog
    In Genesis 1 God creates the heavens and the earth, all the animals and plants, and man. After creating the universe, God sits down with Adam and begins to describe what He’s created and man’s role in it. Man is to be a steward of a special corner of God’s creation. Adam is, in conjunction with his family, to fill the earth, and “subdue it” (Gen 1:28). The Hebrew word for “subdue” is “Kabash” and it means to conquer or subjugate. This is pretty startling when you think about it.  To conquer something means there must be resistance.  It means...
  • God Sounds Like You
    October 4, 2018
    Blog
    When Jesus was walking the earth, it was a lot harder to recognize who He was than we might imagine. We give the Pharisees a lot of grief for missing it, but His own family didn’t believe in Him (John 7:5). The difficulty they had was that they grew up with Jesus. They saw Him every day working with their dad. He didn’t do any miracles.  He made furniture and ate food.  He slept. He was totally normal.  Boring even.  They knew Him (or at least they thought they did). They knew His voice so well that it was crazy to think...
  • What is God Really Like?
    September 19, 2018
    Blog
    What is God really like? That’s a big question. It’s so big we’ll never have the full answer, but we’re meant to continually seek it. Jesus described knowing God as eternal life (John 17:3).  Real living starts when we begin to see God for who He really is. This is a lifelong journey that doesn’t even stop when we die. For all eternity, we’ll be learning about the eternal riches of His gracious character. (Eph 2:7) We have some misconceptions about God that come not from the Bible, but Greek philosophy.  Greek philosophers like Plato and Aristotle heavily influenced Augustine, who in turn...