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Nov 04, 2018

Everyday faith considers the Source

Everyday faith considers the Source

Passage: James 4:13-17

Speaker: Patrick Lafferty

Series: Everyday Faith: A study in the book of James

Category: Faith

Instantly our lives can be forever changed. The hopes we had, the plans we made can be altered irretrievably. What is it to act on the faith not only that our lives can and will change, but that we are tied to the will of One from whom all things have their being and their doing?

Order of Worship

Call To Worship: Psalm 63:1-4
Profession of Faith: The Apostles’ Creed
Sermon Title: Everyday faith considers the Source
Central Text: James 4:13-17
Benediction: Ephesians 3:20-21
Post-Service Text: Galatians 6:14

11.04.18 Sermon Notes


Tree of Life - Journey Forth

Readings & Scripture

Call To Worship: Psalm 63:1-4
ALL: 1 O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you;
my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you,
as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.
2 So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary,
beholding your power and glory.
3 Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you.
4 So I will bless you as long as I live; in your name I will lift up my hands.

Profession of Faith: The Apostles’ Creed
I believe in God the Father Almighty,
Maker of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
and born of the virgin Mary.
He suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended into hell.
The third day he rose again from the dead.
He ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of god the Father Almighty.
From there he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.

Central Text: James 4:13-17
James 4:13 Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”— 14 yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. 15 Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.” 16 As it is, you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil. 17 So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.

Benediction: Ephesians 3:20-21
20 Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.

Post-Service Text: Galatians 6:14
14 But far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.

Related Scripture


  • Proverbs 16:9
  • Proverbs 27:1
  • Ecclesiastes 1:2-3
  • Amos 8:4-6
  • Luke 12:21-31
  • Romans 14:23
  • Galatians 6:14
  • Ephesians 1:3-11

Discussion Questions & Applications:

  1. What reasons do you have for believing God participates in and rules over all things? What ideas or experiences most challenge that faith?
  2. What’s at issue in James’s mind in this passage--plans for profit-making, or plans without any sense of God’s oversight of human activity? Defend your answer.
  3. How does the life, death, and resurrection change the way you think God can act in the world?
  4. How does a belief in God’s Providence—His power over all things—shape what plans you make? What difference might it make if you don’t see your investments of time, talent, or other resources in that light?
  5. How might a renewed trust in that notion make even the slightest change to how you think, plan and act?



  • Providence, not the newspaper, accounts for the times in which we live. - Eugene Peterson
  • Look closely and you will find that people are happy because they are grateful. The opposite of gratefulness is just taking everything for granted. - Brother David Steindl-Rast
  • Dear God, we pay for all this stuff ourselves, so thanks for nothin’. - Bart Simpson
  • It matters not how strait the gate,
    How charged with punishments the scroll,
    I am the master of my fate,
    I am the captain of my soul. - William Ernst Henley, Invictus
  • Reverence begins in a deep understanding of human limitations; from this grows the capacity to be in awe of whatever we believe lives outside our control. . . .[which] as it grows brings with it the capacity for respecting human beings, flaws and all. - Paul Woodruff, Reverence
  • Misfortune befalls the good as well. We can’t protect ourselves against it. We can’t protect our children. We can’t say to ourselves, even if I’m not happy, I’m going to make sure they are.
    We vanish as a cloud. We wither as the autumn grass, and like a tree are rooted up.
    Is there some fraud in the scheme of the universe? Is there nothing which is deathless? Nothing which does not pass away?
    We cannot stay where we are. We must journey forth. We must find that which is greater than fortune or fate. Nothing can bring us peace but that.
    - From Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life
  • Only if we give [God] our supreme allegiance will we get what we most need from him. - Tim Keller, Hidden Christmas


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