Displaying Christian Sermons by tag: rick warren ministries

Watch Christmas at Saddleback Church - Andy Wood - Rick Warren Ministries (December-25-2022). 

Rick Warren (November-13-2022) Daily Devotional: Seven Steps for Godly Planning. 

“If the Lord wants us to, we will live and carry out our plans.” - James 4:15 (GW)

We’ve been looking at Nehemiah’s model for making God-inspired plans. So far, we’ve learned five steps: 

Step 1: Ask God for favor on your life.
Step 2: Prepare for an opportunity, and then wait.
Step 3: Expect fear, but don’t let it stop you.
Step 4: Establish a clear target.
Step 5: Set a deadline.

Here are Nehemiah’s final two steps in developing a life plan.

Step 6: Anticipate barriers.

Part of the planning process involves anticipating problems. Proverbs 27:12 says, “A sensible man watches for problems ahead and prepares to meet them” (TLB).

Nehemiah thought through all the problems he might face. Then he said to the king, “Would you be willing to give me letters to the governors of the provinces west of the Euphrates River, so that I can travel safely to Judah? I will need timber to rebuild the gates of the fortress near the temple and more timber to construct the city wall and to build a place for me to live. And so, I would appreciate a letter to Asaph, who is in charge of the royal forest” (Nehemiah 2:7-8 CEV).

First, Nehemiah asked the king for permission to go to Jerusalem. Then he asked for protection and provision. Nehemiah was a cupbearer, not a professional builder, yet because he had spent four months praying and planning, he was able to anticipate the barriers, determine his needs, and calculate the cost.

Step 7: Trust God to meet all your needs.

Even when things don’t turn out the way you hoped, you can still trust God. A mark of spiritual maturity is when you recognize that God’s hand is behind the plans that go your way and the plans that don’t go your way. Godly goal setting says, “If the Lord wants us to, we will live and carry out our plans” (James 4:15 GW).

The king ended up giving Nehemiah everything he had asked for—and Nehemiah gave God all the credit: “And the king granted these requests, because the gracious hand of God was on me” (Nehemiah 2:8 NLT). Nehemiah didn’t say, “Look at what my planning did.” He said, “Look at what God did.”

What would you like God to do in the next six months, the next year, or the next five years in your life? A great plan starts with these seven steps that Nehemiah followed. Try following them in your own life and see how God works in your life.

Talk It Over

  • What are some common barriers to reaching your goals? How can you better prepare to overcome those barriers?
  • In what areas of your life has God given you success? Spend some time giving God the credit for that success and for having his “gracious hand” upon you, even when your plans haven’t been successful.
  • How can you follow Jesus more faithfully so that you can have his wisdom in your planning? What one step will you take today to do that?

Rick Warren (October-01-2022) Daily Devotional: Pray Instead of Worry

“Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again—rejoice! Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray." - Philippians 4:4, 6 (NLT)

Contrary to popular opinion, God wants you to be happy. Many people don’t believe that to be true; they think the more dull you are, the more spiritual you are. But the Bible says, “Happy are the people whose God is the Lord” (Psalm 144:15 GNT). 

Not only does God want you to be happy, but he tells you how to be happy! In fact, God has a four-part formula for happiness. It’s found in the book of Philippians, and we’ll look at it together over the next few days.

The first part of the happiness formula is this: Worry about nothing. The Bible says, “Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again—rejoice! Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray” (Philippians 4:4, 6 NLT).

Worry basically means one thing: You’re not trusting God in a particular area. It’s the opposite of faith. It’s like saying, “God, I really don’t believe you’ve got everything under control.”

Have you noticed how worry never solves your problems? It only takes up a lot of energy. It can’t change the past, and it can’t change the future—but it can certainly ruin the present. Somebody once said that worry is like a rocking chair; it will give you something to do, but you don’t get anywhere with it.

Jesus said it like this: “Don’t ever worry about tomorrow. After all, tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own” (Matthew 6:34 GW).

What if you converted the energy you use to worry about something to pray about it instead? Rather than pushing the panic button, what if you pushed the prayer button?

Prayer is your communication with God and the first thing you should do when you start to worry—not a last resort. Some people say, “We’ve tried everything else. We might as well pray!” Instead, take your concerns to the Lord first so that you won’t waste energy worrying.

You can’t worry and be happy at the same time. That’s why the first step to happiness is to stop worrying—and start praying! It’s not always easy to do—people are natural worriers. Give it a try today.

As you stop worrying and start praying, you’ll find new power in your life as you live for God’s purposes every day.

Talk It Over

  • Do people see you as a person who trusts in God, or as a person who worries?
  • In what area of your life are you not trusting God?
  • What would your day look like if you prayed more and worried less? How would your happiness be affected?

Rick Warren (September-06-2022) Daily Devotional: God’s Word Gives You More Rest and Less Stress

“Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise." Philippians 4:8 (NLT)

It’s increasingly difficult to stay focused on true things. The Bible says, “Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise” (Philippians 4:8 NLT). 

This requires a mental shift. It means you’re going to have to build new, better habits.

Your mind is bombarded with lies every single day. Advertisements and social media tell you that if you don’t think, dress, or act a certain way, you don’t matter. When you’re growing up, you’re told that if you’re not good at academics or athletics, you don’t matter. This world is full of lies, and you’ve believed many of them. But they’re just not true.

The only way to counter those lies is to fill your mind with the truth. The truth is that you are a child of God. You matter to him. Jesus said that when you know the truth, it will set you free.

To be set free means to have a breakthrough. I want you to have a breakthrough. But the only way you can do that is to be in God’s Word, the Bible, every day, even if it’s just for a few minutes.

If you think you can’t do that, just consider how many hours you’re spending on social media or TV or reading the news. How are you going to have a healthy mind if you’re filling your mind with lies instead of the truth?

Not everything you hear is true. Not everything you tell yourself is true. You’ve got to get into the Bible every day, because God will always speak truth. You can trust what he says about you and the promises he’s made for you in his Word because he always keeps his promises.

What happens when you keep your mind on the right things?

“If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will keep your thoughts and your hearts quiet and at rest as you trust in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7 TLB).

Wouldn’t you like to have your heart and your mind at rest? That’s a breakthrough everyone needs: less stress and more rest. Get started on your breakthrough today by getting into God’s Word.

Talk It Over

  • What is one thing you do every day that you could replace with reading God’s Word?
  • How can you know if something you hear is the truth or a lie?
  • What is one of the lies you’ve been repeating to yourself for years? What does the Bible say is the truth?

Rick Warren (July-12-2022) Daily Devotional: How to Help Someone Find Hope and Healing, Part 2

“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” Galatians 6:9 (NIV)

Have you ever felt that someone was a hopeless case? That they never were going to come to Christ? Maybe it was an alcoholic relative, a drug-addicted parent, or a codependent neighbor—someone with a hurt, hang-up, or habit that kept them from knowing God. 

The truth is, no one is outside of Jesus’ reach!

Yesterday you learned about the importance of small groups in helping “hopeless” people find healing. We looked at the story in Luke 5 of a group of men bringing their paralyzed friend to Jesus to be healed. That story showed three characteristics (compassion, faith, and intervention) of a small group that God uses to heal. Today we’re going to look at four more characteristics:

Persistence. You may get discouraged as you try to reach your family, friends, and acquaintances with the Gospel. But you can’t give up! The friends in Luke 5 didn’t let difficulties discourage them. It didn’t matter that crowds were between them and Jesus. Galatians 6:9 says, “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (NIV).

Innovation. These friends dared to do something different. It’s pretty innovative to get up on a roof and tear it apart to get a guy to Jesus. Imagine the mess they made! Ministry is messy because it involves people. Small groups that won’t step out of the box won’t be willing to be messy enough to be instruments of healing.

Cooperation. Obviously, these men worked together to bring their friend to Jesus. It was too big of a job for one guy. It’s the same way with small groups. People come to Christ faster when they do it in the context of a supportive small group. A supportive community is a powerful witness for God.

Sacrifice. Have you ever wondered who paid for the roof after this story? I think the group of friends did. They wouldn’t just tear it up and leave it for someone else to fix. Whether it’s time, money, effort, or something else, there is always a cost to bringing someone to Christ. Luke 16:9 says, “Use your worldly resources to benefit others and make friends. Then, when your possessions are gone, they will welcome you to an eternal home” (NLT). Small groups must be willing to make sacrifices if they’re going to be agents of healing in the world.

God wants to use you to bring healing to those without hope. But he doesn’t expect you to do it alone. Form a good small group of Christians. Then ask God for the persistence, innovation, cooperation, and sacrifice it will take to reach the hopeless with the hope of the Gospel.

Talk It Over

  • Describe a time when your ministry got messy and you wanted to give up. What kept you going? Did someone help you through it?
  • What are some ways small group members can encourage each other when they are discouraged by difficulties?
  • What people in your life have you witnessed to or prayed for God to save? How can your small group help you in your witness to these friends?

Daily Devotional (February-13-2022) Do You See Others the Way Jesus Does?

“When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd.” - Mark 6:34 (NIV)

How do you know if you’re looking at life from God’s viewpoint? Think about the way you see other people. 

This is a great test of your spiritual maturity—better than asking how much of the Bible you know, how often you go to church, or whether you serve, tithe, or pray.

Life is all about love and relationships. So if you want to gauge your spiritual maturity, think about how you see other people.

Let me ask you some pointed questions.

How does God see your spouse? Valuable. Acceptable. Lovable. Forgivable. Is that the way you see your spouse?

How about the stranger at the grocery store? The person who cut you off in traffic? The beggar on the street? What do you see when you look at other people? Do you see them as irritations or burdens?

What about the people you work with? Do you see them as enemies? Competition? Or do you see them the way God sees them?

All people matter to God. It doesn’t matter who they are, what they’ve done, or even what they believe. Christ died for them. Jesus loves them. God has a plan for every person, and he wants them to have a relationship with him.

The Bible says in Mark 6:34, “When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd” (NIV).

That’s the way Jesus sees people. And that’s the way you can grow to see people too. You can learn to have compassion for your own family as well as for your neighbors, your community, your country, and the rest of the world.

Let your spiritual vision get stronger as you learn to see people the way Jesus does.

Talk It Over

  • What keeps you from seeing people with God’s eyes? It may be distractions like pride, competition, or busyness. How can you limit those distractions?
  • When you see other people through God’s eyes, how does your perspective change?
  • How can you show compassion to other people today, particularly in your family or those you live in closest relationship with?

Buddy Owens - Watch Sermon: The Greatest News About Christmas - Rick Warren Ministries

Rick Warren - Watch Sermon: When Your Plan Doesn’t Match God’s Plan. We all experience disappointments in life. Have you ever noticed that God often has different ideas than you do about your life? In this message, Pastor Rick Warren offers seven principles from God’s Word for dealing with disappointment.

Rick Warren - Is Your Mind Stuffed with Stuffing?  What are you filling your mind with? Stuff or Truth? Pastor Rick teaches today how the wise person fills their mind with truth.

Buddy Owens - Sermon: How to Pray When You Haven’t Got a Prayer

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As the concept suggests, a preacher is one who practices the art of preaching. The word "preaching" is originally associated with the religious sphere of activity. Language researchers note that of all religious texts, this word - like the type of activity itself - is most closely associated with Christianity. Preachers teach Bible truths when speaking to believers or unbelievers. 

Most of the Bible's sermons are in the New Testament. The sermon, as we find it in the Book of Acts and the Epistles, is expressive, but at the same time brief. It is built on the fundamental truths of Christianity: the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The preaching of the Church, in whatever form it is delivered - be it an ardent call to repentance for sins and salvation or the gospel story of a relationship with God and people - is by nature Christocentric.

Christian online preaching isn’t just a statement of spiritual truths, but as a sacred act, during which the preacher, in cooperation with the Lord the Holy Spirit, accomplishes the work of salvation for unbelieving listeners and the process of spiritual growth for the saved. Words spoken by a person cannot strengthen faith, but the biblical sermon in the mouths of preachers has a special power that can transform a person's soul. It is on this supernatural power of preaching that the preacher's authority is established.

Despite the fact that the evangelical Church teaches about the priesthood of every born-again Christian, in the work of biblical preaching, special attention is paid to the character and moral character of the preacher. The moral right to proclaim eternal biblical truths, to preach the Gospel from the pulpit or in another setting on behalf of the Church, can not only be those who know these truths, but who have Christian virtues, a character that reflects Christ. We are talking about a person who sincerely loves God and the people to whom he addresses, deeply interested in the eternal and earthly well-being of his listeners. A person with the good name of a Christian, who has a "good testimony" confirmed by time and the Church. Since we are talking about eternal, enduring truths, the writing of which was inspired by the holy God, proclaim them on behalf of the Author, i.e. of God Himself, it is permissible for the one who knows Him personally, has constant communion with Him and obeys Him implicitly. From the point of view of the essence and basis of the message that he proclaims, the preacher is not the author of his message and therefore doesn’t have the right to change the truths being proclaimed. He represents the interests and fulfills the will of the One who authorized him for this with the authority of His glorious name, and, therefore, the preacher is obliged to accurately convey to his audience what was entrusted to him by God. Freely interpreting Scripture and presenting to the audience their own interpretation of eternal biblical truths, posing as God's revelation on behalf of God, is not only a distortion of the truth, but also an ethical violation that entails consequences. However, in the sermon, it is not forbidden to mention personal experience, as well as the experience of other people, examples from various areas of public life to the extent that these examples correspond to the truth and contribute to a more accurate and understandable message of it.  

Of course, in the modern world, taking into account the development of communications, a preacher is expected to possess the skills of oratory. This is not a strict requirement, but it is always encouraged, as it is an undeniable advantage and serves the greater benefit and success of the preaching work.

There are many preachers in modern Christianity who have achieved recognized success in the preaching work.

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