The Greatest Gift Is God Himself (Reading Notes)

The best and final gift of the gospel is that we gain Christ. “I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ” (Phil. 3:8). This is the all-encompassing gift of God’s love through the gospel – to see and savor the glory of Christ forever.

In place of this, we have turned the love of God and the gospel of Christ into a divine endorsement of our delight in many lesser things, especially the delight in our being made much of. The acid test of biblical God-centeredness – and faithfulness to the gospel – is this: Do you feel more loved because God makes much of you, or because, at the cost of his Son, he enables you to enjoy making much of him forever? Does your happiness hang on seeing the cross of Christ as a witness to your worth, or as a way to enjoy God’s worth forever? Is God’s glory in Christ the foundation of your gladness?

From the first sin in the Garden of Eden to the final judgment of the great white throne, human beings will continue to embrace the love of God as the gift of everything but himself. Indeed there are ten thousand gifts that flow from the love of God. The gospel of Christ proclaims the news that he has purchased by his death ten thousand blessings for his bride. But none of these gifts will lead to final joy if they have not first led to God. And not one gospel blessing will be enjoyed by anyone for whom the gospel’s greatest gift was not the Lord himself. (John Piper in God Is The Gospel)

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Monday Musings (8-8-16)

Coffee cup on Black

– It has been 2 months since posting a Monday Musings or even a regular blog post…I would offer an excuse but I’m guessing “the dog ate my blogpost” would probably not go over too well!

– We have some exciting things going on at North River Church and I’m grateful to pastor such a great group of people whose primary desire is to love Jesus and make him known.

– So far this year (through July) we have baptized 24 people and 46 have partnered with us as members (with more ready join). This is incredible! God is working!

– I only have one sermon left in our Joseph series. I think it has been a great series for our church. If you would like to listen you can here: www.gonorthriver.org/sermons

– On August 21st I will be delivering a “State of the Church” message where I will focus on casting vision for where God is leading us. I’m excited about what God has done over the last 7 months but I’m even more excited about what I believe he will do!

– I’m also pumped about having a candidate for our Worship & Discipleship Pastor position coming in view of a call on the 21st. He is fantastic and I can’t wait for our church to meet him and hear his heart for ministry.

– It is fun to be building a team to do ministry with at NRC.

– We are continuing to look for a Family Pastor and have had some great interviews recently. I love the next generation and the thought of having someone on our team pouring his life into our teenagers and kids is exciting!

– I have been slacking the past several weeks but finally got out and went for a run this morning. It felt good. Exercise is such a vital part of maintaining my sanity!

– Our girls start school on Wednesday so the next couple of days will be filled with last minute shopping, open houses, and final preparations before getting back to a more fixed routine.

– It is hard to believe our baby will be in Kindergarten this year! She is growing up! We will also have a 3rd grader. I’m excited that they will be at the same school.

– It is finally August…which means we are less than 1 month away from college football starting! I can’t wait to plop down on the couch and eat boiled peanuts while watching college football.

– That is all for now. I need to finish up a couple of things before heading to K5 open house later this afternoon.