The Sermon that Took 20 Years to Prepare

Twenty years. Two decades. It represents half of my life. The first half and the second as different as night and day, hot and cold... dead and alive.

When I came to Christ in 1995, I was 20 years old. A stranger led me to Christ. Not a pastor. Not sitting in church. Just a stranger who loved the Lord and shared the Gospel with me.

I don’t know why this “half my life” thing is hitting me so hard, but it is. Maybe it is because of how radically I was changed way back then. Maybe it is because I was expecting to be more mature at this point.

So to commemorate 20 years of walking with Christ, here are 20 things I’ve learned in the last 2 decades being born again. Have I mastered these? No. I’ve learned some things along the way that Christ continues to work on in me. This is in random order.

  1. The more I learn, the more I see how much I don’t know. God’s Word is amazing. It’s only “one book," but the more I study this “one book” the more profound it becomes.

  2. God calls people that I wouldn’t have picked. Looking at the several billion people on earth in 1995, I should have been the LAST person the Lord called to follow Him.

  3. God is faithful even when I am not. I have blown it. I have failed. I have let people down. God is very much opposite of that. Always.

  4. People matter. I spent a long time running on “the mission matters, the mission matters”. It does. But it only matters when people matter. And I have wrongly avoided loving people at times because I thought I was doing the mission.

  5. Taking care of home must come before taking care of church. 1 Timothy 3:4-5 is pretty clear on that. I’m starting to get it.

  6. I have needed to forgive much. But I have needed to be forgiven more. I have managed to fail in my relationships with just about everyone. I have been shown much grace. I wish I could reflect the same.

  7. I tend to over-promise and under-deliver. I don’t know 20 things. I’m still learning, though.

BUT this Sunday, I WILL share something very personal I have learned along the way – some things I wish someone had told me 20 years ago. It’s all about the trials of life. Stuff every Christian needs to know... sooner is much better than later. And it’s all in 1 Thessalonians 2:17-3:5. Please join us.

p.s. - here’s to learning 7 more things in the next 20 years!