Pastor Jimmy Proulx

Intentional Discipleship

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FaithPoint News

FaithPoint Logo 1Greetings FaithPoint!

C.S. Lewis said, “Do not be scared by the word authority. Believing things on authority only means believing them because you have been told them by someone you think trustworthy.”

Here are the notes from the sermon last Sunday:

The text for this sermon comes from James 1:22-25. The title of this sermon is: Hearers and Doers.

There is a point of tension between a parent and child and it usually occurs when the parent tells the child to do something. For example: a parent may tell the child to clean their room. The child goes to their room and when the parent goes to check on the child, the parent notices that not one toy has been put away.

What has happened is that the child would rather play than clean up. The action is defiance. Willful disobedience. Now the child may not be thinking about defiance but his actions speak volumes. What makes the child do this?

It is not that the child does not love his parents. In fact, it does not matter how often the child hugs his parents or tells them that he loves them, it does not change the fact that deep inside the child, defiance remains. There is sin in the heart of the child.

The child hears what he is supposed to do but does not do it. This is a sign of immaturity. This does not mean that you stop loving your child. It means that you have to be more intentional with helping your child grow. You also pray earnestly that God would save your child’s soul.

This is a very real example of what happens in church every Sunday.

James 1:22-25

When the Bible is preached faithfully, the Holy Spirit is already working in the lives of the hearers. He convicts of sin, He compels us to repentance, He commands us to obedience, and He demands a response.

Every time you hear the Bible, you give a response.

One of two things happen. Either you surrender to what you have heard and decide to obey the Scripture, or you determine to not obey. This happens every week.

Hearing the word without action results in self deception.

The key to this text is verse 22. We are to be doers of the word and not hearers only. The only proper response to the Word of God – the entirety of Scripture is to allow it to cut your soul and to take root.

Jesus tells us a story, a parable of four types of dirt. A parable is a story that is told to teach something important. I encourage you to read this parable in Luke 8:4-15

The four types of dirt is:

  • Shallow – the seed has nowhere to go, the birds eat it and people walk on it
  • Rock – the seed cannot get proper nutrients here and what little it grows, withers and dies
  • Thorns – As the seed grows, so do the thorns and the thorns choke the life out of the fruit that the seed is trying to produce
  • Good – the best soil. The seed thrives in this soil and will bear much fruit

Vs 11-15

I pray that you all are good soil but ultimately you have to decide what kind of soil you are.

Vs 23-24 How sad is it that a dude would get out of bed, go look at himself in the mirror and is made aware that he needs to do something about it but he leaves and does nothing?

This is an example of a fool.

This verse demonstrates the folly or stupidity of hearing the Word, the Holy Spirit brings up some sin or something else to your mind, you are made very aware that something is wrong. There is something in you that is preventing you or blocking you from being conformed in the image of Jesus and then you do nothing about it.

When you know that something is wrong, when the Holy Spirit has brought it to your attention, made you aware – the right thing to do is to do something about it.

Here is our encouragement:

Vs 25 We want to look into the perfect law of liberty. We saw earlier in chapter 1 that trials are the road to maturity. Obedience is the car. Why is James talking about the law of liberty. Obedience leads to freedom. Jesus came and fulfilled the law. We obey the law when we follow what Jesus said, “Love God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength and love your neighbor as yourself.”

Obedience to Jesus will lead to perseverance. We are called to steadfastness. Obedience to Jesus will help us persevere, endure, and remain steadfast. We are not called to be a hearer who forgets but a doer who acts.

A doer who acts will be blessed in their doing. Doing = obedience. Obedience to Jesus = blessing.

We do not get to choose how God will bless us. I believe that God will open doors and opportunities for you to share your story and the gospel. He will give you influence as you pour your life into the lives of others. As you walk in obedience, you will have a measurable track record. You will be able to look back and look at where you are now and see the progression.

We want to be more like Jesus. We want to be obedient. We want to progress in sanctification.

Do not be a hearer only.

Be a doer who acts by walking in obedience to Jesus.

 

I LOVE OUR CHURCH!

Pastor Jimmy

If you liked the notes from this sermon, please like and share. If you would like to share how God is using this James series in your life, head over to my Facebook page and continue the conversation.

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FaithPoint News

FaithPoint Logo 1Greetings FaithPoint!

The first sermon in our Faith Works series is in the books. If you were not able to watch it, I encourage you to go to our FaithPoint Facebook page or my page and watch the sermon recap video. I am excited about this series and I hope that you are too.

Here are some suggestions for getting more our of this Faith Works series:

  • Be expectant. Be expectant that God will speak to you through this series. Pray that God would speak to you. Put yourself in a position to hear from Him. Prepare yourself before you come to FaithPoint that you would be ready and excited for God to speak to you.
  • Repent of sin. The Holy Spirit convicts us all of sin. There are things in our lives that are a barrier or wall that is blocking us from growing or conforming more to the image of Jesus. Sin is a big deal. The wrath of God was poured out on Jesus on the cross for sin. Sin will kill you. Confess it, kill it, bury it, move on. Don’t go back to it. Don’t try to dig it up.
  • Apply the truth of Scripture. Obedience is greater than sacrifice. Jesus wants us to be disciples and make disciples. A disciple obeys their master. You cannot call yourself a follower of Jesus if you are not willing to do what it takes to follow. I encourage you not to just hear the Scripture preached but to do what it says. This will help you grow. Applying the text of Scripture is nourishment for your soul.
  • Pray for your pastor. Pray that I would be faithful to God and faithful to the Scripture. Pray that I would be a good expositor of the Scripture and communicate well. Pray that God would use me and my work as I study and prepare to do a work in you.

Here are the notes from the sermon on Sunday:

The text for this sermon comes from James 1:1-18. The title of this sermon is: Testing of Your Faith. This is week 1 in our Faith Works series.

Faith.

Faith comes from hearing and hearing through the Word of Christ. Romans 10:17.

Why is this series called Faith Works?

If you are a Christian, you know by now that it is impossible for you to stand on your own in your own power in the face of overwhelming adversity. You do not have the strength to tackle every trial and temptation that comes your way.

Let’s jump into the text.

James 1:1 James was the half brother of Jesus. He was skeptical at first, not convinced that Jesus was truly the Son of God. Then after Jesus died, and rose from the dead, it clicked for him. He became one of the lead elders of the church in Jerusalem and he was devoted to Jesus. James would ultimately be killed for following Jesus by having his head bashed in.

Vs 2: It is not if trials come. It is when trials come.

What is a trial?

  • Difficult marriage
  • Sick
  • Cancer
  • Kids don’t listen and are acting a fool

These all fit into the only category listed of various.

Did you notice the tone of this verse? It is a command to be obeyed. Not a suggestion. So, we see very clearly that trials are going to come and we are called to count it all joy when the various trials come.

Vs 3 Trials are the road to maturity.

  • Riding a bicycle
  • Tests in school

Steadfast: faithful, devoted, dedicated, constant, solid, fixed in place.

Trials help us see that we are on the road to maturity. God is conforming us to the image of Jesus.

Let what God wants to do in you, take hold in you. Let it take root and grow. Let it thrive and flourish.

Vs 5 Trials help us be self aware of our need for God. Then doubt enters the octagon.

Mark 9:20-27

I believe. Help my unbelief.

God I believe you can help me in this situation but I am losing my grip. I want to hold on to that belief but I can feel it slipping away. I can’t see anything because all I see is the storm.

I believe. Help my unbelief.

Vs 8 The double minded man does not even call out to God because he does not believe that God will do anything in his life. He plays the game. He actually wants to look like he has all his crap together. He wants to dress out but doesn’t want to actually play in the game. “I want to wear the jersey, but I don’t want any pads.”

I am pleading with you to drop the act. Stop acting like you got it all together when you know you don’t. We all struggle. We are all on this journey together. God put you here at FaithPoint because there are no perfect people allowed. This is a safe place.

You can say that you are broken.

You can say that you are struggling.

You can say that you feel like you are drowning.

You can say that you don’t understand.

No one is going to judge you. No one is going to condemn you.

The next fight. Comparison enters the octagon.

When you are in a trial, the wickedness of our hearts comes out in comparison.

A study was done a couple of years ago and the results were this: Instagram causes depression.

You are in the middle of your trial, struggling with doubt, eating a whole case of Pringles and binge watching some show on Netflix. Then you pick up your phone and what do you see?

James wants us to see that everyone is on a level playing field.

Everyone will experience doubt. Everyone has seasons of happiness and joy. Everyone has seasons when it is going well and….everyone has seasons of trials and storms.

Vs 13-15 Don’t view this trial with the wrong glasses. Don’t misunderstand that God wants to mature you, grow you, and make you more like Jesus. If you try to blame God or take your focus off Him during this trial, you will lose what God wants to do in you.

Vs 16. Do not be deceived. Your flesh is going to tell you that God hates you. God doesn’t want to help you. God has left the building and left you alone to struggle in your own mess. Do not be deceived.

Vs 17 Everything good and perfect gift comes down from the Father of Lights.

Vs 18 God chose you from the foundation of the world. He loves you. He made you or wants to make you part of His family.

My MRSA story.

Sometimes God in His loving Fatherly way has to cut out the infection that is in us or else it will kill us. God wants us spiritually healthy and there are things in our lives that are holding us back from being conformed to the image of Jesus. There are things in our lives that we are holding on to that is letting doubt and comparison win in our lives. There are things that we are holding on to that we know are going to ultimately kill us but we don’t want to let them go because we know it is going to hurt.

The pain of having gunk removed in our lives pales in comparison to the unspeakable joy we will experience because He took what needed to be removed out of us and replaces it with more of Himself.

 

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FaithPoint News

FaithPoint Logo 1Greetings FaithPoint!

I am excited to be diving into the book of James with you this coming Sunday. The title of our series is going to be called Faith Works. I want to encourage you to begin reading the book of James and continue reading it while we are in this series. I believe you will gain both insight and application. I am praying for all of us that we will all grow in our faith and we will not hesitate to apply the truths in this section of Scripture to our lives.

Here are the notes from the sermon on Sunday:

The text for this sermon is: Psalm 42:1. The title of this sermon is: Discipline and Delight. This is a stand alone sermon.

Do you ever take a look in the mirror and this thought enters your mind? Do you ever think to yourself that you are a fraud?

Do you ever pick up the Bible and let it speak to you? Do you let the words pierce your soul and speak life into you? Do you meditate on it?

Do you call yourself a Christian or tell someone else that you are a Christian and then when you look in the Bible, your life does not look like what is written in Scripture?

Do you even give a thought to your own soul?

I am greatly concerned with the state of people whom I have talked with who do not give a crap about their sanctification process. They don’t care about conforming to the image of Jesus and they don’t give a crap about pouring their life into the life of someone else.

They are convinced that they are fine because they said some prayer when they were a kid. They don’t push their spouses to Jesus, they don’t push their kids to Jesus but they push their kids to get good grades. They don’t push their co-workers or friends to Jesus.

How many people know you but have not heard about Jesus from you?

Maybe they have fallen prey to a TV preacher who makes millions off selling books and DVDs and speaking at conferences. He gets on TV and he tells you that God is going to bless you and bless you, multiply all this stuff in your life and they neglect to tell you that God requires obedience and faith.

There are things found in Scripture that they will not tell you because you might not buy their book.

There is an analogy used in Scripture that a Christian is like a tree. The tree grows up to be strong, its roots run deep and it thrives where it is planted and bears fruit in its season.

Psalm 1:3A tree that does not produce fruit is considered worthless. It is cut down and thrown into the fire. What causes a tree to not bear fruit?

It is possible for a tree to survive cold temperatures and survive being struck by lightning.

You can blame outside circumstances. You can complain about bugs that eat the leaves or worms. You can complain about birds.

However, when a branch stops producing fruit, something from the inside of the tree caused it to stop. If this situation is not dealt with, another branch will not produce fruit, then another branch will not produce fruit. Then before you know it, what was once a strong, thriving tree, is now a dead tree.

My family used to have a peach tree. It made delicious peaches. We used to just pick them off the tree and eat these big, juicy peaches. We noticed over time that the tree was not producing as much fruit as it had normally been producing. Each year, the amount of peaches became less and less. One year, we saw that the tree had no peaches. The tree had died. The tree, looked fine from the outside.

What kills the tree comes from inside the tree.

In a lot of cases, the tree can be saved and it can bear fruit again. The branches that are not producing fruit have to be cut off.

The same is true for a Christian. If you are not intentional about conforming to the image of Jesus, it is highly likely that you are not intentional about making disciples or pouring your life into the life of someone else.

When a Christian stops bearing fruit, they have let something get inside them and kill the part of them that bears fruit.

They begin making excuses or saying things like, “I don’t have time.” Here is the problem with excuses. Nobody cares.

I don’t have time – is not an excuse.

You do have time, you are just trading it for something else.

Do you want to grow in your relationship with Jesus and make disciples or do you want to binge watch Friends on Netflix?

Have you lost your desire to live for Jesus? Have you lost your passion? Your fire is an ember and not a flame? Has your light dimmed to the point where the light is no longer visible?

A light can be relit. A flame can be reignited. There is hope.

Psalm 42:1

When is the last time, your soul longed, it ached to be with God?

Psalm 37:4

But what if you don’t delight in the Lord?

Hebrews 12:11

There is this thought in our culture that if you are not where you want to be – fake it till you make it. In other words, you act like you have made it. Is there any wonder that people look into the mirror and see themselves as a fraud? You do what you take delight in. I believe that if you truly delight yourself in Jesus, you will be obedient. Sure, some of the things that Jesus asks of us is hard or difficult but the more you practice obedience, it will become less of a discipline and more of a delight.

1 Timothy 4:7

We are to work, strive, discipline or train ourselves in godliness. We are to discipline ourselves until it becomes a delight.

A runner or a cyclist.

Couch to 5K app

It is a process. You don’t get off the couch and immediately go run a marathon. It is a process. You get off the couch and walk to the mailbox a few times. That turns into a walk around the block which turns into a jog around the block. Then you start to run and you run a mile, two miles and before you realize it you are running a 5K. Then maybe you look at that and realize if you can run a 5K, you can run a half marathon. Your goal gets bigger because you see how far you have come and you see bigger goals that you can accomplish.

It starts off as painful, hard and difficult. Over time it becomes easier and fun to where you look forward to it.

Spiritual disciplines can be the same way.

I am grateful now to be able to pour my life into the lives of others.

 

I LOVE OUR CHURCH!!!

Pastor Jimmy

 

If you liked these sermon notes, please like and share. If you would like to share your thoughts on this sermon, a video, or ask a question, head over to my Facebook page and continue the conversation.

 

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Vlog: The 360 Degree Leader

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Vlog: Thoughts On John Maxwell Quote

pic from flickr by Matthew Keefe

pic from flickr by Matthew Keefe

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Vlog: Sermon recap Superheroes Week 8

FaithPoint Logo 1James 4:17, “So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.

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FaithPoint News You Can Use

FaithPoint Logo 1Greetings FaithPoint,

This blog post is going to be a little different.

I want to share with you some upcoming things that you can expect to see in the coming weeks.

First off, you will see a lot more video content. Online video is becoming the way that the majority of people are consuming their content. This means everything from TV shows, movies, Facebook videos, and YouTube. Not only is online video increasing in popularity, but the majority of these videos are being watched on smart phones and tablets.

This discovery has challenged me to rethink how I communicate with you as your pastor.

I would also like to share with you that if you miss a Facebook video or the replay, there is a very likely chance that you can find the repost of that video here on the blog.

Here are some new videos that I am working on for you in the next few weeks:

  • One is greater than Zero
  • Stopping Self sabotage
  • A few giveaways
  • Chasing Immortality
  • Teaching Your Boys To Be Gentlemen
  • Bible studies
  • Rethinking Discipleship

These are just a few of the things that I want to bring to you.

facebook-live-logoNow I would like you to answer some questions?

  • Would you be interested in more video content?
  • Would you be interested in video Bible studies and devotions?
  • Would you be interested in a series of videos that focused on a specific topic?
  • Would you be interested in a Q and A type of video?
  • What other topics or discussions would you like me to address for you through the use of video?

You can check out my latest video, Boys Can Handle The Bible on my Facebook page.

I look forward to creating new videos that will encourage you to walk in the Word and point you to our Savior and Redeemer King – Jesus.

If you liked this post, please like and share. To answer one or more of these questions, please go to this post on my Facebook page and share your thoughts in the comments.

I would like to thank you in advance for your participation in helping me come up with videos to better serve you.

I LOVE OUR CHURCH!

Pastor Jimmy

 

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Vlog: Journaling

The journal is my way of expressing things that I would not share on my blog. In a journal I can pray, vent, rant, or write thoughts down on a piece of paper to better free my mind up to think on other things.

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What’s In The Catalyst Box?

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FaithPoint News

FaithPoint Logo 1Greetings FaithPoint!

I want to encourage you with this verse today:

“And I pray that the sharing of your faith may become effective for the full knowledge of every good thing that is in us for the sake of Christ.” Philemon 1:6

FaithPoint Men, remember that we will not be meeting this evening. We will be meeting next Tuesday at our normal scheduled time.

Thank you for taking the time to watch, like, and share our FaithPoint video. Please join me in praying that we will reach more people with Bible teaching as we do more of these videos.

Tomorrow, James will be doing our FaithPoint video. I am looking forward to seeing his video. I hope that you are too. Join me in the comments section of the video and let’s have a discussion together.

Here are the notes from the sermon on Sunday:

The text for this sermon comes from: 1 Corinthians 9:19-23. The title of this sermon is: Whatever It Takes. This is week 7 in our Superheroes 2 series.

Superheroes are relentless. There is a mission that they have or usually some bad guy or threat that needs to be dealt with. They will do whatever it takes to succeed. They don’t give up and they don’t quit. They are relentless. Why?

If a superhero calls it quits, takes a day off, or taps out, the bad guy wins. They fail. The goal is never achieved.

There is a very important and urgent matter that needs to be discussed. A Christian must by all means be transformed by having their mind renewed by the Word of God. Why?

Your very thoughts can keep you from living the life that God has called you to live. The abundant life is only accessible when you submit your whole life to God. You limit yourself because of the limitations your mind is placing on you.

For example: Have you ever not wanted to talk to a person about Jesus or invite them to church based on what their job was?

Christians reject people who have jobs that do not fit onto their moral scale. You might be fine talking to a woman in the grocery store until you learn that she is a stripper. Then you just shut down inside and want to run away and never see her again?

You will reject a person who is a bartender for a living because they sling bottles of beer or rum and cokes at the same restaurant you go to eat at because you don’t order alcohol.

You won’t talk to a tattoo artist because you are just not into tattoos.

You won’t talk to a barista at a coffee shop because you don’t drink coffee.

How incredibly selfish and pathetic is that?

I believe that a handful of people in this room know someone that is either in an emotional affair with someone who is not their spouse, they might be cheating on their spouse or thinking about it…and you sit there without a word of hope.

Rejecting people that do not fit within your moral framework is not just selfish and stupid it is disobedience.

How can you love your neighbor as yourself while rejecting your neighbor?

Jesus came to save people from all countries, all languages, all races, all educational, cultural and financial backgrounds and he came to save people who do not fit inside of your mental moral framework of right and wrong.

Before we get into our main text, let’s be reminded of what Jesus said in Luke 10:2, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore, pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”

1 Corinthians 9:19-23

Here we go.

Paul gives us his strategy for how he built relationships and shared the gospel with as many people as possible. You become relentless.

You do whatever it takes.

  • To the Jews, he became as a Jew
  • To those who were under the law, he became like one under the law
  • To those outside the law, he became like one outside the law
  • To the weak he became weak
  • He did whatever it took to share the gospel with as many people as possible.

When there is not a direct command from Scripture to be obeyed, we look for principles that can be applied.

We do whatever it takes so that some people might hear the gospel and become followers of Jesus.

If you were a missionary in another country you would have to do things such as:

  • Learn a different way to talk
  • Eat food that you may not have ever eaten before
  • Learn new customs and traditions
  • Possibly learn a new language

You can talk to a bartender and order a soda or tea.

You can go to a coffee house and drink a tea or water.

You can talk to a tattoo artist without getting a tattoo.

God has given you likes and dislikes and molded you with a certain type of personality so that you can reach the people that you were meant to reach.

Maybe God is calling you to get outside of your box.

You have to know about superheroes or comic books to talk to a person that works at a comic book store.

You have to know something about cars if you are to talk to a person that sells cars, works on cars, or hot rods cars.

You should know a little bit about phones, tablets, or technology to talk with someone who works for a cell phone company or works with technology for a living.

Your relationship with your family, friends and co-workers is your doorway to share the gospel with them or give them an invite card.

You know what is really easy, giving an invite card to a server, a person who works in the drive thru, or a pizza delivery person.

I have an interesting situation now where because I get to interact with parents everyday when I pick up the boys from school. School is the doorway to a conversation with the parents.

Look at Paul. You have to find the common ground with the other person. You cannot expect them to go out of their way for you.

So what, you might have to learn about something new. You might just find that God is giving you something else to use when you talk to people about Him.

Do it all for the sake of the gospel that you may share with them in its blessings.

Jesus was relentless in His pursuit of you.

You should want to share the gospel with others.

Romans 1:16

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.”

The gospel is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes. Everyone.

As a church in this city, we should be greatly dissatisfied that there are lost people all around us.

We should do whatever it takes so that we can reach the gospel with as many people as possible.

Start with one.

If you have a family, friends, live in a neighborhood, go to the movies or go out to dinner or have a job where you work with other people – you already have your one.

Start with them.

1 John 5:4.

We live by faith. We trust that God will lead us and mature our faith. We also trust that God will go before us preparing the way for us to build that relationship and share the gospel.

Faith is the victory that overcomes the world. Faith will do whatever it takes to rescue those who are in the world.

I challenge you to read these verses every day until the end of September. 1 Corinthians 9:19-23.

We need to get this in us so that we can hold on to it and it becomes a transformational part of our DNA.

Whatever it takes.

 

I LOVE OUR CHURCH!

Pastor Jimmy

 

If you liked this post, please like and share. If you would like to share your thoughts on this sermon or any of the other sermons in this Superheroes 2 series, head on over to my Facebook page and continue the conversation.