The New St. John’s
Roots & Wings: Empty Nest

Roots & Wings: Empty Nest

May 31, 2020

by Rev. Grant Armstrong
Sunday, May 31, 2020
Matthew 4:21-22 , Matthew 20: 20-21
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SERMON NOTES
I. Our nests can be empty for a number of reasons.
II. The stock-photo image of family can be harmful.
III. God’s presence in your nest is what makes for a full life.

FOR DISCUSSION AND REFLECTION
- If you could build a nest for yourself out of anything, what would you use?
- What do you most often picture when you think of an empty nest?
- How would you feel if Jesus came to call your children who worked for you and were the heirs of your family business? Why?
- How are the stock-photo images of family celebrated in our culture? How can that imagery be harmful?
- What are some ways that people in an empty-nest season are uniquely suited for Christian service?
- Where will you cultivate the presence of God in your life this week?
- What is God saying to you through today's scripture?

Roots & Wings: Sending Home

Roots & Wings: Sending Home

May 24, 2020

by Rev. Grant Armstrong
Sunday, May 24, 2020
2 Corinthians 5: 1-10 
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SERMON NOTES
I. The chances that we’ll die someday are pretty significant.
II. God will make all things brand new.
III A spirit filled heart and an empty tomb make us certain.
IV. Only God can judge. And God will.

FOR DISCUSSION AND REFLECTION
- What do you imagine when you think of heaven?
- In 1 Corinthians 15, the Apostle Paul says our current bodies are as different from our eternal bodies as a seed is from a plant. What does that mean to you?
- This passage points to our longing as evidence that there is another kingdom on the other side of this life. Where do you experience a longing for God’s perfect kingdom?
- What is the standard God will use to judge humanity? Is it fair?
- What will you do this week to prepare for the time when you will someday go “home” to be with God?
- What is God saying to you through today's scripture?

Roots & Wings: Sending Out

Roots & Wings: Sending Out

May 17, 2020

by Rev. Grant Armstrong
Sunday, May 17, 2020
Matthew 10:5-16 
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SERMON NOTES
I. You are sent with a mission.
II. Jesus provides for His calling on your life.
III. Find what God is blessing and be a part of it.
IV. Don't be hardened. Don't be dumb.

FOR DISCUSSION AND REFLECTION
- Tell about a time when you were sent on a “mission” of some sort.
- There is evidence in scripture that the majority of these apostles were between 16-20 years old. How does that impact your understanding of this passage?
- Why would Jesus tell His followers to rely on the hospitality of others as they go? Is Jesus encouraging freeloading? What do you think?
- What are the benefits of “shaking off the dust?” What are the drawbacks?
- How will you be as shrewd as snakes and harmless as doves this week?
- What is God saying to you through today's scripture?

Roots & Wings: Family

Roots & Wings: Family

May 10, 2020

by Rev. Grant Armstrong
Sunday, May 10, 2020
2 Timothy 1:5-7, 13-14, 2 Timothy 3:14-15 
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SERMON NOTES
I. Families provide foundations, not guarantees.
II. Faith necessarily makes our family bigger.
III. It’s on each of us to stick with it and pass it on.

FOR DISCUSSION AND REFLECTION
- What food do you think of when you hear "traditional family recipe?"
- Why do you think Paul appeals to Timothy's family as an example of enduring faith?
- How do people expand their sense of family through the church?
- Who handed the baton of faith on to you? What are you doing right now to do that for another?
- What can you do this week as part of a family or faith family to model enduring faith?
- What is God saying to you through today's scripture?

Roots & Wings: Wisdom

Roots & Wings: Wisdom

May 3, 2020

by Rev. Grant Armstrong
Sunday, May 3, 2020
Joshua 4:15-24 
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SERMON NOTES
I. Wisdom is God’s gift of living out what is right.
II. Wisdom marks special moments and remembers.
III. It’s everyone’s job to pass wisdom on from generation to generation.

FOR DISCUSSION AND REFLECTION
- Share your favorite quote when things become challenging or difficult, and where you learned it.
- Where do you see reminders of God’s faithfulness like the stones Joshua piled up from the river?
- How can wisdom be something that is both a gift and taught?
- How are wisdom and tradition the same? How are they different?
- What will you do this week to both sit under wisdom and share wisdom?
- What is God saying to you through today's scripture?

He Rose: Paul

He Rose: Paul

April 26, 2020

by Rev. Grant Armstrong
Sunday, April 26, 2020
Acts 9:1-19 
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SERMON NOTES
I. Sincere and devoted faith, when wrongly directed, can be destructive.
II. Being part of a redemption story often means overcoming fear.
III. A transformed life is powerful evidence of the resurrection.

FOR DISCUSSION AND REFLECTION
- If you had to change your first name, to what would you change it? Why?
- Acts 22 offers a chance for Paul to tell the story of his conversion for himself. Why do you think his listeners respond so violently to his testimony?
- When Jesus confronts Saul, he says, “Why are you persecuting me?” How can Saul do any harm to the risen Christ?
- Ananias was afraid to approach Saul. Who are the people we are afraid to approach today? What keeps us at a distance?
- Has God set you free from past hurts, pains and habits? How will you share the story of God’s power to change your heart this week?
- What is God saying to you through today's scripture?

He Rose: Thomas

He Rose: Thomas

April 19, 2020

by Rev. Grant Armstrong
Sunday, April 19, 2020
John 20:19-29 
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SERMON NOTES
I. Jesus still knows where to find us.
II. Being real with God also means being honest with our doubts.
III. Jesus wants us to experience things that lead to faith.

FOR DISCUSSION AND REFLECTION
- Describe a time when you were “taken” by something that seemed too good to be true.
- John 20:19 says the disciples gathered behind locked doors out of fear. Would you have been a part of that gathering? Why or why not?
- When Jesus gave His followers power and authority in John 20:21-23, what seemed to be the qualifications of the recipients?
- Many Christians conceal their wounds and attempt to conceal every blemish to their facade. How has someone’s vulnerability helped you grow closer to Jesus?
- What is one specific thing you will do this week to give evidence that Jesus lives through your life?
- What is God saying to you through today's scripture?

The God We Can Know: I AM the Resurrection and the Life

The God We Can Know: I AM the Resurrection and the Life

April 12, 2020

by Rev. Grant Armstrong
Sunday, April 12, 2020
John 11:17-26 
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SERMON NOTES
I. Jesus will undo our heartbreak.
II. We're invited to a belief that gives us hope.
III. True, abundant, and eternal life calls your name.
 
FOR DISCUSSION AND REFLECTION
- What is your favorite Easter memory?
- Why do you think Jesus might have waited before going to Bethany where he might have been able to keep Lazarus from dying?
- Have you ever been frustrated at God's timing, as Martha was frustrated in Jesus' timing?
- Have you ever felt like you were being called by God to do something that didn’t make sense at the time?
- How has God shown you hope when you thought all hope was lost?
- What does new life mean to you? How is Jesus making that possible for you?
- What is God saying to you through today's scripture?
The God We Can Know: I AM He

The God We Can Know: I AM He

April 10, 2020

by Rev. Grant Armstrong
Good Friday, April 10, 2020
John 18:1-11 
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The God We Can Know: I AM Teacher, Lord, and Servant

The God We Can Know: I AM Teacher, Lord, and Servant

April 9, 2020

by Rev. Grant Armstrong
Maundy Thursday, April 9, 2020
John 13:1-17 
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