Heaven as a Pattern for Worship :: PODCAST

Presented at Curwensville Alliance Church on 7/9/2017 by Pastor Steve Shields

Where is the best place to learn a skill or a trade? For example, If you wanted to learn to make Italian food, where would you go? Lots of places, but if you’re a serious chef, you’ll probably consider Italy.

French food – Paris.

If you’re going to learn to speak Mandarin, your best bet would be to go to China. You can learn from teachers here in the States, but any International Worker will tell you that they really learned the language when they went to the source.

If you’re going to learn to drive heavy equipment, you don’t go to Perkins Family Restaurants to learn, right? No, you go where it’s already happening, and you learn there.

Are you seeing a principle emerging?

If you want to learn to do something,
look at people who are doing it and learn from them.

Let’s take that principle and apply it to worship.

Where does worship occur – I mean really great worship? You might think of a church you know or a choir you’ve heard or a worship band you know. “When we were at Willis’ church – man that worship was GREAT!”

I have a better idea: If we want to find good worship, let’s look into heaven.

After all, that’s the source, right?

And where would you turn in the Bible to get a picture of heaven? You can find glimpses of it in several Old and New Testament books. You can look to Isaiah – when the prophet finds himself before the throne of God. But the book of Revelation has, probably, the most descriptive passages on the subject.

In this podcast, we look at the opening verses of Revelation and see what we can learn about worship.

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“Where’s the Rewards, God?” :: PODCAST

Presented by Pastor Steve Shields at Curwensville Alliance Church on 3/26/2017

Often, you hear Christians express disappointment with life — or even with God — concerning a delivery that never arrived.

They thought that, if they had enough faith, God would deliver — that he’d give them the good life. Or if they served him enough, or obeyed him enough, or sacrificed enough — then God would pay them back.

That’s not the way Christian faith works, but a cursory glance at Christian faith could lead one to believe it should.

This podcast talks about rewards — and their place in Christian faith.

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Coping with Great Loss :: PODCAST

Presented on 3/12/2017 by Pastor Steve Shields at Curwensville Alliance Church

Mary Ann was light of Bob’s life. He was that dad — the one who doted on his daughter, and seemed to come alive when she entered the room. And why not? She was beautiful, gracious, and bright. When she moved to another state, he was sorry she’d left, but excited about what her future would be like.

And then the unthinkable happened. Mary Ann became sick and died — in a very short period of time. Bob was devastated. He was never the same. What parent would be the same after burying a child. But for Bob, it was different. His loss defined him — so much so that years later, his wife would say, “Our daughter died, and Bob’s not himself,” to new people they would meet.

I don’t judge Bob. I feel for him. My heart aches for him — not just because of his loss, but because that loss came to define who he was.

Pain can do that.

Pain can define who we are. But does it have to? 

This podcast addresses that question.

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