Posts in Ryan Sharp
Breakthrough

Key Scripture: Acts 9:1-31

 The Apostle Paul’s story reminds us that Jesus can change anyone. His redemptive power is unstoppable. There isn’t a wall of pride He can’t break through nor a heart hardened by sin He can’t soften. We must not write off those He wants to write in to His story of redemption. This includes you. Who you are isn’t determined by what you’ve done; it’s determined by what God has said about you and what He’s done for you. He has a plan for you. He has a call on your life. Do you know who you are in Christ? Do you believe who He is in you?

Scripture References: Acts 7:58, Acts 8:1, 3, 1 Timothy 1:15-16, Acts 26:13-15, 1 Corinthians 1:30, Philippians 3:4-6

Carried Away

Key Scripture: Acts 8:1-40

Have you ever been so excited about something, that you’ve taken it a little too far? When we’re passionate about something, it’s easy to get carried away. Our faith in Christ should carry us away to places we’ve never been. It should carry us to do things we’ve never done: approaching the unapproachable, loving the unlovable, forgiving the intolerable, attempting the impossible. Unfortunately, it’s easy to just get carried away and caught up in the excitement of Christianity, but not in Christ Himself. Where is He wanting to take you today?

Scripture References: Luke 8:4-9: 13, Matthew 8:18-22, John 6:53-54, Luke 14:34-35, Mark 13:13, Philippians 3:8

Church Problems

Key Scripture: Acts 6:1-7

Every church has problems. In fact, the more people a local church has, the more problems it will face. It’s easy to feel overlooked, neglected, like you don’t matter. How we respond to hurt and disappointment is very important. We must be eager to give grace and careful not to tear the church apart with gossip. How the church responds to problems is equally important. Church leaders must willingly entrust ministry to the people of God and equip them to love others well. Most importantly, the problems a church faces must never distract it from what matters most. The health of any church will always be measured by its devotion to prayer and God’s Word.

Scripture References: Acts 6:1-7, 1 Corinthians 3:16-17, Ephesians 4:11-12, Luke 10:38-42, James 2:15-17

Out Of Control

Key Scripture: Acts 5:12-42

A life without limits is a life you can’t control. The power of the Holy Spirit isn’t safe and cannot be contained within the confines of our comfort and convenience. He leads us into situations that are risky and difficult, calling us to go where we don’t want to go and to give up what we want to hold onto. But it’s only when we surrender control of our lives to the all-consuming fire of God that we discover true freedom. what are you still trying to control today?

Scripture References: Acts 5:12-42, 1 Peter 3:15, Galatians 2:20, Hebrews 12:28-29, 1 Kings 18:36-39, Luke 14:25-33

Change of Plans

Key Scripture: Acts 3:1-26

Don’t you hate it when plans change? If you want to follow Jesus, you’d better get used to it. The plans He has for us aren’t the plans we’d make for ourselves; they are immeasurably better! When we’re crippled by sin and the suffering life can bring, it’s easy to lose hope. In those moments, we must remember that the greatest blessing we can receive is Jesus Himself. At times, a miracle is what God uses to bring us closer to Him. At other times, He uses trial and hardship. He won’t hesitate to undo the dreams we have for ourselves if it means we’ll finally surrender to the infinitely better dream He has for us.

Scripture References: Matthew 16:24, Isaiah 55:8-9, Proverbs 13:12, Romans 8:28

Keep It Simple

Key Scripture: Acts 2:42-47

Do you ever get distracted? In a world with so many options, it’s difficult to be truly devoted to anything. Church is no exception. There are so many different kinds of churches to choose from and each of these churches has so many different activities to occupy our time and attention. While these things are meant to engage us in spiritual growth, they can actually distract us from a simple devotion to Christ. The early Church gives us a clear example of Christian community engaged in God’s Word, fellowship, communion and prayer. To recapture the limitless influence of the early Church, we must recapture their simple devotion to the things that matter most.

Scripture References: John 17:20-21, Hebrews 5:12-14, Ephesians 4:11-12, James 5:16, Luke 22:31-32

Stronger

Key Scripture: Acts 2:1-41

When the Holy Spirit came at Pentecost, He changed everything. When He comes into your life, He changes everything in you. So many things in life serve as constant reminders of our faults, fears and failures. It seems we’re always coming up short and we’ll never be good enough. In fact, we’re NOT stronger than we think…BUT He is stronger than we’re weak. He takes our greatest weaknesses and uses them to put His power and glory on full display. Do you believe His promise? His power is made perfect in your weakness!

Scripture References: Joel 2:28, Psalm 51:11, Galatians 3:13-14, Matthew 16:17-18, 1 Corinthians 2:3-5, 2 Corinthians 12:9-10

Life Without Limits

Key Scripture: Acts 1:1-11

We all have our limits. Some limitations are self-imposed, due to our past failures or lies we believe about ourselves. Other limitations are due to the finite nature of our humanity. Yet Jesus made it clear that His followers can experience a life without limits – a life of faith where “nothing will be impossible” and we do the works that He did. So, what’s the problem? Living without limits requires living beyond the suffocating boundaries of ordinary Self as a part of God’s extraordinary Church. It requires recapturing our mission to bring the good news of Jesus Christ to the world. We can’t do this on our own, of course, but He has given us His Spirit and power. This means we are no longer “only human,” but are His witnesses in this world. His Church is unstoppable!

Scripture References: Matthew 17:20, John 14:12, Matthew 16:18, Matthew 23:23-24, Galatians 2:20, Romans 8:11

Change Your Mind

Key Scripture: Colossians 3:18-4:18

The reason most of us come to church is to get help with our relationships. Our marriage is struggling, our family is failing, and people are constantly disappointing us. God’s Word is clear: The Truth of Christ and good news of the gospel is our only hope for a changed life and healthier relationships. Why, then, do so many of us still struggle? Nothing in our lives will ever change until how we think about everything changes. Our minds are naturally conformed to the world’s self-focused way of thinking. Jesus came to transform us by renewing our minds. He came to show us that the surest way to get over our problems is to get over ourselves. Worship and sacrifice free us to experience the fullness of life Jesus offers us. To experience life change, we need a change of mind.

Scripture References: Romans 12:2, 2 Timothy 3:1-2, Matthew 16:25, Revelation 5:11-14

Exclusive Truth

Key Scripture: Colossians 2:1-23

Truth isn’t popular. Our world prides itself in being “inclusive” to all truth, yet all truth is exclusive by nature. Jesus claimed to be the exclusive Truth and the only Way to God. To call Him just another great religious teacher is to seriously misunderstand Who He is and what He said about Himself. He came to pay the infinite and impossible debt we owed God because of our sin. This means we no longer have to keep working to pay it off through exceptional moral living or religious performance. We can rest assured in the Truth that our sins are forgiven and we are righteous in Christ, regardless of how we might feel in any given moment. This is truth worth celebrating!

Scripture References: Matthew 18:23-27, Jeremiah 17:9, Luke 8:13