Posts tagged orange
Brotherly Love

With Earnestness and Sincerity

On Sunday Pastor Eric preached from 1 Peter 1:22-2:3. Those who are born again to a living hope are called to love with brotherly affection. Though we often feel like we need to be loved, our new life in Christ enables us to earnestly love our fellow elect exiles.

Listen to the sermon.

The First "To Do" Of Christianity

Change Your Mind

On Sunday Pastor Eric preached from 1 Peter 1:13-21. We are to set our hope fully on the grace that will come to us at the 2nd coming of Christ. Hope grows in our hearts when we focus our minds on that day. It grows our reverence for the Lord which manifests in changed lives.

Listen to the sermon.

Our Privileged Position

A Good Time To Be Alive

On Sunday Pastor Dustin preached from 1 Peter 1:10-12. We are often tempted to wish for a different life. But we occupy a privileged position in God’s plan of salvation. We know what prophets longed to know. We experience what angels wish they could experience. We enjoy a clear view of the glorious grace of God displayed through the saving work of His Son.

Listen to the sermon.

When Suffering Is Necessary

The Most Counterintuitive Truth in the World:
We Need to Suffer

On Sunday Pastor Eric preached 1 Peter 1:6-9. We assume that the world would be better without suffering. But Peter inserts a word we wouldn’t expect when thinking about suffering: necessary. Sometimes it’s necessary for us to suffer. Why? So that our faith can be tested. Why does our faith need to be tested? So that we can celebrate the enduring faith God has given us.

Listen to the sermon.

We Can't Wait For Somebody Else

If faith comes by hearing, we must speak the gospel

On Sunday church member Luke Womack preached from Romans 10:14-17. He reminded us that every person is guilty before God. Faith only comes by hearing the word of Christ. Every Christian needs to be busy declaring the gospel to those who don’t believe. From our neighborhoods to the farthest nations, we must preach the gospel.

Listen to the sermon.

Abbey And Andrew's New Member Testimony

God Is Building Our Church

On Sunday we had the privilege of hearing Andrew and Abbey’s story of the Lord leading them to our church. Here is what they shared:

My wife Abbey and I are excited and grateful to have officially joined this church as members two weeks ago. The road here has had some unexpected twists, but the grace of God has marked them all. 

I first heard about Sovereign Grace several years ago from my good friend, Mark Esposito.  After that, I began listening to Pastor Eric on the podcasts. I also came to the Christmas Eve service at Sovereign Grace with my family for several years. 

Pastor Eric is a very unique pastor. I have never heard a pastor preach with such enthusiasm, charisma, authority, and grace. Many pastors are only one of those things.  Before I began attending Sovereign Grace, I went to mega churches out of convenience, but wasn’t finding the right fit. Due to the importance of fellowship, I began attending regularly in October 2017. The Esposito Family always made me feel so welcomed and at home.

Then, I met Abbey in January 2018 and we began dating. Church is very important to both of us and shortly after we began dating, we started going to church together. We alternated between the church she was attending and Sovereign Grace. After discussion and prayer we decided to attend Abbey’s church together. I remember the conversation with Pastor Eric in the cabin at the men’s retreat. He was gracious, sad to see me go, but happy to see me pursuing a godly woman.

During our time at Abbey’s former church, we had discussions about what we were learning, our fellowship with others, and church practices. We realized through our discussions and prayer that we did not agree with much of what was going on there. So, after a few months of regularly attending and participating, we left.

When we left, we were not sure where we wanted to go next. We thought we might be in for a season of church hunting.  Instead of church hunting, I gently persuaded Abbey to give Sovereign Grace a try again. Right in between leaving the other church and re-attending sovereign grace, we got engaged. We were both drawn to the community oriented feel of Sovereign Grace.

One of the other major draws to Sovereign Grace was Abbey’s rich history in Old Towne Orange. She has lived in this city her entire life and attended school here. Her first jobs were at the Army Navy Store and Watson’s. Her step dad is a city councilman and both he and Abbey’s mom are heavily involved in the city. The whole family has a passion for community engagement. Abbey’s dream was always to put roots down in Old Town and to live near the circle. What a blessing to be brought to a church in the community Abbey loves and I have come to love too.

We have been so welcomed by the Sovereign Grace church body and everyone is so friendly. We love our small group and friends we’ve made here. I am grateful for how this church takes care of each other, which was graciously illustrated when Mark Esposito crashed on his bicycle two weeks ago while we were riding together. Within 10 minutes of the incident Pastors Eric and Mike had been informed and were contacting me to help however they could. Mike and Lois came to the hospital to be with Michelle. It is wonderful to see how the church practices caring for each other.

The community is great, but more importantly Sovereign Grace shows the signs of a true biblical church.

Abbey and I are blessed to have godly friends from this body to fellowship with and grow together.  We are so grateful to be members of this local church.

The First Section Of Genesis Is Finished

Pastor Eric preached from Genesis 11:10-32 this past Sunday finishing up the first major section of the book. We now take a detour to the book of 1 Peter. Eric summed up this section by reminding us that the pace of our lives is slow, the details of our lives are forgotten, and nobody is perfect. But God is faithfully bringing His plans to pass. He’s using our lives. He’s regenerating the entire cosmos for His glory and our good.

Listen to the sermon.

Combatting An Envious Heart

Only the One who transcends our hearts can change them.

On Sunday church member Jason Roenicke preached from Psalm 37:1-7. He pointed out that it’s easy to become envious of those who “succeed” in life. It seems that the wicked run the world. But that’s not true. God runs the world. We must fight to trust in Him, delight in Him, commit to Him, and wait patiently for Him.

Listen to the sermon.