By Zack DeBerry
I am excited to be closing out our series on Judges. The last couple of weeks have helped me to really understand that God uses flawed and broken people to do His work. I can take comfort in that because I’ve felt very flawed many times in my life. From parenting to pastoring, I feel like I have so much to learn and can do better or be more efficient, but it is never about what I am capable of on my own. It is only when I am operating in God’s calling for my life and His strength that I will be able to do all that He has for me to do.
This week we end the series with one of my favorite people in scripture, Samuel. Samuel’s story is a pretty cool story from beginning to end, but this week we will look at a section of his story that may seem like he failed a little as a leader/follower. As we dive into his life as the 15th and final Judge in Israel, we will learn what it means to be obedient leaders/followers in our own lives. We will see God do amazing things through what appears to be failures in Samuel’s leadership. I am excited to be able to talk with you and share about Samuel’s life, but more importantly about the incredible way God uses flaws and failures to teach us and accomplish His incredible plan in our time.
Join us live at our campus in Huntersville at 9AM or 11AM; our campus in Denver at 11AM (located at 274 N. Hwy 16, Suite 100, Denver, next to Wendy’s); or online at TheJourneyOnline.tv.
By Matt Dawson
What exactly is the difference between CONFIDENCE and ARROGANCE? Have you ever wondered that?
As we continue our series in Judges this week, we are going to be looking at a Leader/Follower whose life is marked by incredible fear and undeniable faith! He would be listed in the “Hall of Faith” in Hebrews 11.
However, there can often be a tendency to view people with confidence as arrogant, and sometimes miss the signs of unhealthy arrogance in someone’s life and assume they are just confident. Is there really a difference?
Let’s look at the practical difference and then see how this plays out in our lives.
Confidence – full trust; belief in the powers, trustworthiness, or reliability of a person or thing.
Arrogance – display of superiority or self-importance; overbearing pride in oneself.
To anyone on the outside looking in, we KNOW that these are 2 different things. However, have you ever struggle to LIVE IN CONFIDENCE because you think it will be PERCEIVED as ARROGANCE? Sometimes (at least in our minds) they are subtle differences between the two.
Here are a few common phrases that could be interpreted both ways.
“I can do this” (could be confidence in the strength God’s given you through Christ…OR arrogance in your own ability to do all things.)
“It’s okay if they leave, we don’t need them to accomplish this…” (could be confidence that there is a larger story at work and that God is going to do it… OR arrogance that we don’t need anyone else to do anything.)
“I know he/she loves me…” (could be confidence in past assurance that their love is real & true measured by years of faithfulness…OR arrogance in one’s self-importance and reasoning that everyone loves me.)
“You just need to love yourself…” (could be confidence that the unconditional Love of God despite our sin is the key to sharing love with others…OR arrogance that through self-help talk we don’t have any issue and that we are beautiful and lovely just the way we are.)
The reality is that most of us oscillate back and forth between confidence and arrogance more than we care to admit. We speak of a faith in God and trust in Him alone to accomplish all things, but we live in such a manner that overemphasizes who we are and what we alone can accomplish.
I believe that FAITH is the key to living a life FILLED with confidence built around Jesus Christ. That even when you speak a phrase that could be perceived as arrogance, the way in which you live your life will prove where your trust really lies.
Hebrews 11 tells us:
“Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.”
This Sunday, we will look at a Judge who has to learn to LIVE IN CONFIDENCE that God not only is WITH HIM, but that God had purposed great things for him to accomplish if he would only live up to His real Identity!
I hope to see you on Sunday (9am & 11am Huntersville, 11am Denver) as we continue our series “Follow the Leader” at Journey Church.
By Matt Dawson
During a season when our country is at odds with our current president and his leadership, we thought it would be an excellent time to discuss the principles of how God uses leadership and His desire to be the Leader of all.
Paul tells us in his first letter to the church of Corinth, “Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.”
Our scriptural study during our “Follow the Leader” series is going to come from the book of Judges.
The time of Judges (Old Testament) was a unique time in the history of God’s people. It’s a time filled with war, rebellion, and God’s desire to see His people LIVE in the freedom of His Ideals and Instructions as they settle into the land of promise. However, just as we today often experience, God’s people struggled to allow only God to lead them and would rebel against His will and instructions causing nothing but oppression from their enemies and distress in their lives.
God would raise up “judges” (champions, warriors, and leaders) to help bring peace to the nation and point them back to God’s sole leadership of the nation.
Judges like Ehud, Deborah, Samson, Gideon, Eli, Jephtah, and Samuel. These men and women were chosen and gifted by God to help lead the people, but they were NOT perfect! They all struggled with faith, fear, and integrity in their own leadership.
The goal of this series is not only to help us recognize that we still serve a God who desires to be the SOLE LEADER in our lives, but also to understand the role of the leaders we are given. That even in their flaws, failures, and humanity, God is able to use all of it to accomplish His mission and will for those who trust God alone as their Lord.