Sunday, June 3, 2018

A Helpful Way to Think About Life (Excursion 1/Road Trip 11 - June 3, 2018)

This is the first message in the Excursion for June 2018. It's also message # 11 in my "Road Trip" series at St. Stephen's Lutheran Church. 

Title: "A Helpful Way to Think About Life"

Message SummaryThe way we think about life shapes how we experience it, and how we live. You’ll live very differently if you believe “Life is a test” as opposed to “Life is an adventure!”

One helpful way for followers of Jesus to think about life uses the image of an L-shaped pipe. In this metaphor, humans are built for relationship: for connection to God and to each other. Life is about “flow” as we receive love from God and release love to others. The inflow and the outflow are connected, and are actually just two parts of one thing. As it says in 1 John 4 “We love because he first loved us.” Blockage at either end shuts down the flow, both in and out.

Now, life is full of “plumbing problems” that disrupt the flow of love to us and through us. People can be wounded by others spiritually, emotionally and physically, and end up with “dents” in their pipe. “Clogs” of bitterness, anger jealousy and such can also form inside us. 

But healing can repair what has gone wrong. And human life finds meaning, joy and fulfillment again as we experience the flow of love moving through us.

Video: Click here to view video of message on Facebook.
Slides: Click here to view the slides from the sermon in a new window.

AudioClick here for the sermon audio from Sunday, June 2, 2018.

Conversation Questions from the Travel Guide
  • What other ways do people think about life?   “Life is a ___.”  “Life is like___.”  
  • Do any of those ways of thinking shape how you experience life?
  •  How well does the Pipe image fit with how you experience life?
  •  Are there things about your life that don’t fit easily within the Pipe metaphor?
  •  If you saw yourself as a pipe, then how would you see Jesus?
  •  Are you aware of any clogs in your life right now? Any dents?

Bible verses you can explore using the Pipe:
  • Matthew 6:12
  • Luke 10:40
  • Luke 15:11-32
  • John 15:1-11
  • John 7:37-39

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