An Audience of ONE

AudienceofONEThere is an incredibly understated theme all throughout biblical history that I’ve recently uncovered. It’s gone virtually unnoticed because we live in a culture that believes if we are not popular, loved, or accepted by everyone, we’re not popular, loved, and accepted by anyone.

We underestimate the impact our influence can have even on a small scale. With celebrities, performers, and athletes drawing crowds of thousands, and having social media followers in the millions, we undervalue the importance of small-scale interactions; the up-close and personal, one-on-one encounters we have almost all of the time. We can tend to feel if we can’t do it on a grand-scale, it’s simply not worth doing.

I’m so glad God never felt this way about us! While we were yet sinners, Christ loved us and gave His life for us. When we had nothing to offer in return, Christ chose the route of making the first move toward our redemption. But, before He died for the world, take note of the interactions Christ had during His earthly ministry.

  • Just Jesus and a woman at the well
  • Just Jesus and a woman caught in adultery, after the crowd scatters
  • Just Jesus and Nicodemus under the cover of night
  • Just Jesus and a little girl healed as they were already mourning her death
  • Just Jesus and Peter walking on the water
  • Just Jesus and Zacchaeus
  • He even faced down Satan one-on-one in the wilderness
  • Mary Magdalene mistakes the risen Christ for the Gardner

This theme is not unique to Jesus’ day. God chose to have these encounters with individuals from the dawn of time:

  • Adam in the cool of the day
  • Enoch walked with God, but God took Him because Enoch pleased God
  • Noah, all by his lonesome found grace in the eyes of the Lord
  • Abraham, called out of the family idol-making business to become the Father of Many Nations
  • Jacob wrestling his “Angel” all night long became the father of the Israelite Nation.
  • Moses met God one-on-one at the burning bush

This theme is important because many of these seemingly small inconsequential interactions resulted in transformational and pivotal moments in people’s lives. I call these encounters, An Audience of ONE.

No large crowds. No big venues. Just a one-on-one, up-close and personal, intimate Audience of ONE that would go on to have a huge ripple effect!

  • Mary had an audience of one with the Angel Gabriel and went on to become the Mother of Christ!
  • Zechariah had an audience of one with the Angel and he and Elizabeth became the elderly parents of John the Baptist, of whom Jesus said there was none greater!
  • Peter’s conversation with Jesus after His resurrection, later resulted in Peter preaching on the Day of Pentecost that saved thousands in one day!
  • Saul on his way to kill Christians was blinded and sent to Damascus where he had an audience of one with Ananias that resulted in Saul becoming Paul, the greatest missionary of the Bible!

It’s my sincerest belief friends that Jesus still desires these one-on-one intimate conversations with His followers. I believe He still invites us to have an Audience of ONE with Him on a daily basis. Without these small interactions, this Audience of ONE, how can we ever expect to have the monumental impact our predecessors did? It’s just not possible.

Before David ever strummed a calming note on his harp for a tormented King Saul, David had an Audience of ONE with God while tending his father’s sheep.

Before David slew the giant in front of thousands in the Valley of Elah, David had an Audience of ONE with a lion and another with a bear!

Today, do not underestimate the impact your Audience of ONE can have with God. It’s like to become the most transformational moment of your entire life and could potentially have an impact upon you, your family, and those you lead, for generations to come.

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute.  One Minute Inspirational Sermonettes, Devotionals, and Sermon Ideas for Busy Christians, Pastors, Teachers, and Bible Students!  Visit our ABOUT PAGE  for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you.  ~ RD Mangold

Coffeemakers vs. Coffee Drinkers

cmvscd (1)In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. 38 He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. 39 (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.) John 7:37-39

There’s something almost intoxicating about entering Starbucks. Freshly brewed coffee, espressos, and the sounds of the froth machine; Starbucks isn’t selling just a cup of coffee, their selling an experience! Their baristas may enjoy the beverages they make, but they set aside their enjoyment to cater to the customer. Their service is “coffee making” not “coffee drinking.”

It’s time for us to take our evangelism efforts to the next level. We must move beyond the level of coming into our churches and enjoying a great move of the Holy Ghost. We have to be about our “Father’s Business!” He’s in the “winning souls business!”

When someone comes into our churches there needs to be an atmosphere so powerful and intoxicating the sinner can’t help but want a drink of what we have.

  • They may not know what to order
  • They may not know the lingo
  • All they know is they want a hot fresh cup of something and God’s got it all prepared for them…we need Holy Ghost filled “Baristas” to be passionate for the hurting and hungry souls of mankind!

There’s nothing wrong with coming to the house of God and enjoying a good dose of the Holy Ghost, but we need some folks that aren’t just Coffee Drinkers…We need some Coffeemakers too!

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians! Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

Truth without Charity? Not a Chance!

truthcharity-e1532095436348.jpgThough I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. 2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. 3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing. (Passage Link: I Corinthians 13: 1-3)

Many of us are so good at being religious that we spend more time polishing our crown and our religious attitude than we do actually evangelizing the lost. We are never called to be religious just simply servants. He set the greatest example in the upper room the night of his betrayal when he washed the feet of the disciples. He said, but he that is greatest among shall be your servant.

We are to love one another and remember all the while that it was God who so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son to die for it. We can’t be religious and not have love; otherwise everything we do is in vain.

If you want to add more depth to your spirit try loving people’s souls as much as you do your own. Try loving their heart as much as you do your own. Share with them the only true love there is to be had and that’s the love Jesus has for them. Don’t be judgmental of people, killing them, making them despise anything with a religious label on it. We are living in a very difficult day where many religious groups are labeled as HATERS. We supposedly hate gays, drug abusers, prostitutes, and every person that hasn’t got a religious background like us. We don’t hate them we hate the sin and the effects it has on mankind. Where’s your compassion tonight, where’s the mercy you so willingly accept from the Lord, where’s the love and charity that will take your walk with God from being like tinkling brass and a sounding cymbal to something far deeper and more powerful?

Is it possible to have truth without charity? God says NO!

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute.  One Minute Spiritual Sermonettes and Sermon Ideas  for Busy Christians, Pastors, Teachers, and Bible Students!  Visit our ABOUT PAGE  for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you.  Rev. RD Mangold

What if Church…

…was not about me?

Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Philippians 2:4

What if…

Instead of going to be encouraged…we went to encourage others…

Instead of hoping to sing my favorite song…we hoped to sing “their” favorite song…

Instead of looking to be served…we intentionally served others…

Instead of waiting to be welcomed…we welcomed others first…

Instead of asking to be prayed for…if we sought to pray for others…

Instead of going to receive a blessing…we went to be a blessing…

What difference would it make in our church experience?

Of course, church is ultimately not about either of us…it’s about Jesus…

But, church is also where people who want to make much of Jesus gather to grow, fellowship and worship Jesus…

So, I wonder how our church experience would be made different, if we approached it considering the interest of others…

Just wondering…

Special thanks to  Pastor Ron Edmondson for allowing me to re-post this article

For more by Pastor Ron Edmundson visit www.ronedmondson.com

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

A Piece of Clay – Forming While it Counts

I took a piece of plastic clay
And idly fashioned it one day,
And as my fingers pressed it still,
It moved and yielded at my will.

I came again when days were past;
The bit of clay was hard at last,
The form I gave it still it bore,
But I could change that form no more.

I took a piece of living clay,
And gently formed it day by day,
And molded with my power and art
A young child’s soft and yielding heart.

I came again when days were gone;
It was a man I looked upon;
That early impress still he wore,
And I could change it never more.

(Author Unknown)

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

Fixated on the Quick Fix

A “Quick Fix” is any activity, even if legitimate, that avoids a real solution to a problem or challenge; always looking for the easy way out.  We don’t want to face the hard work associated with learning or gaining experience from facing challenges and dealing with dilemmas. After all, that would take real courage, and who has time for that?

Quick fixes come in many shapes and sizes. There are the scams for getting rich, losing weight, gaining strength, and saving time and money. Ironically, we spend millions each year for quick fixes, and were we able to calculate these figures, one could suggest, we may be spending more on quick fixes than actual solutions? In other words, do we spend more on Band-aids than we do on the cure?

Spiritually, quick fixes lead to counterfeit Christianity – Christian “characteristics” vs. the Christ-like Character. We feebly imitate something we cannot duplicate. Growth, integrity, and experience with God are constants. There is no substitute for any of these elements. You can’t buy them or bypass them. Inevitably, we must all measure up to the Gold Standard – God’s Word. There is no shortcut…anything short of the proper way; Jesus said is a “thief and a robber.” John 10:1

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

Jesus Knew When to Retreat

Even brave and courageous heroes know there is a time to fight, and a time to flee. Some battles will exhaust your every resource, weapon, and ration to the point you are unable to continue the war. One of our greatest American patriots, then General George Washington understood this all too well as he faced the greatest military force on the planet, the British Empire.

Holed up in Valley Forge in the winter of 1777-1778, Washington utilized that time to regroup the Continental Army, and on June 19, 1778, six months after its arrival, the army marched away from Valley Forge in pursuit of the British, who were moving toward New York. The ordeal had ended. The war would last for another five years, but for Washington, his men, and the nation to which they sought to give birth, a decisive victory had been won — “a victory not of weapons but of will.”

In 338 B.C. the Greek Orator and Statesman Demosthenes said, “The man who runs may fight again.” There were several opportunities for the Jews to kill Jesus (see below), but He evaded capture, only in the end to conquer Death, Hell, and the Grave! In the grand scheme of things, retreating from minor skirmishes in order to win the war on Sin, was a superior move on Christ’s behalf, and ultimately ours!

Jesus’ was Mission-minded, so when “all things” were fulfilled He could say without reservation, “IT IS FINISHED!”

After these things Jesus walked in Galilee: for he would not walk in Jewry, because the Jews sought to kill him. John 7:1-9

Therefore they sought again to take him: but he escaped out of their hand, 40 And went away again beyond Jordan into the place where John at first baptized; and there he abode. 41 And many resorted unto him, and said, John did no miracle: but all things that John spoke of this man were true. 42 And many believed on him there. John 10:39-42