Why We Study The Bible :: KINGDOM FOCUS

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 3/03/24 by Pastor Steve Shields.

Reasons we love the word of God.

Because of its place – it moves us forward spiritually. Because of the authority – God’s Word. Because of its universal nature – it speaks to everyone. Because of its depth. Because of its complexity. Because of its touch – it speaks to the heart. Because of its nature – it is restorative.

Four pointers on Reading God’s word from Andrew Murray (1828-1917). Read it with reverence. Read it with expectation. Read it with careful attention. Read it with desire to make it yours.

Being Spiritually Healthy and Spiritually Effective :: KINGDOM FOCUS

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 02/25/24 by Pastor Steve Shields.

Listen as Pastor Steve discusses walls around Jerusalem from Nehemiah 7.

Walls allow people to thrive. They give you a place of shalom.

Walls allow faith to flourish. It’s hard for faith in God to flourish when dabbling in darkness.

Walls allow promises to stand.

There are doors and gates in the walls so we can be the light on the hill. These doors and gates allow us to love our enemies, be reconciled to those whom we’ve had quarrels, treat women and men with respect and dignity, be honest, forgive from the heart, give to those who are in need, let go of worry and trust your Father in heaven and build with an eye toward eternity.

Gates allow others to see the Kingdom. Ultimately, Jesus Himself is the gate to the kingdom.

Take a look at your own life at the walls and gates. Find a place of shalom. Discover the doors in your life and use them. Doors make it possible to live lives of light. Doors make it possible to understand the needs of others.

Staying The Course : KINGDOM FOCUS

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 2/18/24 by Pastor Steve Shields.

Pastor Steve is once again in Nehemiah. Listen as he discusses how to stay the course.

There are three commitments that help us stay the course.

We need to avoid distractions. Distractions are often the tool of the enemy. We need to be committed to staying the course.

We need to address lies. Sometimes God expects you to confront lies.

We need to assess relationships. In the kingdom, genuine friends draw you closer to the King.

Am I staying the course? Which distractions tend to pull you off course? What kind of lies make you want to give in or frighten you? What friendships would you be wise to evaluate?

Crowding Out Toxicity :: KINGDOM FOCUS

Presented At Curwensville Alliance on 2/11/24 by Pastor Steve Shields.

Listen as Pastor Steve discusses how to crowd out toxicity.

How do you know if you are in a toxic environment? Here are some characteristics of a toxic environment. People don’t respect others. People won’t understand others. People don’t care about others.

There are several common problems leading to toxicity. Closing my eyes to the needs of others. Being unaware of the struggles of another. Being unaware of their shared brotherhood.

How do you create a healthy environment? Take a look at yourself. Take a look at the King. Live a life worth imitating.

Standing Against Lies of the Enemy :: KINGDOM FOCUS

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 02/04/24 by Pastor Steve Shields.

The main tool the enemy uses is deceit.

Satan’s power is nowhere near equal to God’s because his power is limited by God. Satan’s pattern is one of deception. His hands may be tied, but his mouth spews lies. Satan knows the power of deceit.

Satan has three favorite lies. You can’t! Give up! Play it safe!

Know your enemy – the father of lies. Satan is NOT God’s equal and opposite. Exposing Satan’s lies disarm him. Your Kingdom work moves forward when you choose not the believe his lies.

What Are You Doing Here? :: KINGDOM FOCUS

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 01/21/24 by Pastor Steve Shields.

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness – 2 Timothy 3:16 (NIV). That means even the Scripture that we wonder why is that important.

Nehemiah 3 shows us some useful lessons. All Kingdom work is spiritual work. Distraction doesn’t have to deter you from serving in the Kingdom. Everyone has a place in the Kingdom. Hearts of passion serve. There is honor serving the Kingdom.

How does a list of names have value?

Nehemiah 3 teaches us to value your role in the Kingdom, to avoid forces that distract and deter you from serving and to try some things to find your place in the Kingdom. We also see that we are to look for something or someone to care about, and to expect honor to come from God and God alone.

Use Their Noggin :: KINGDOM FOCUS

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 01/14/24 by Pastor Steve Shields.

Pastor Steve shares some Kingdom foundations. Christians are not citizens of the world. Citizens of the Kingdom have been transformed as they obey the King and want others to find what they have found.

Citizens of the Kingdom use their noggins!

The non-thinking don’t consider the consequences. The non-thinking give little thought to circumstances. The non-thinking can cause great damage.

We as citizens of the Kingdom, need to think about what we are doing in the Kingdom. We need to live a circumspect life. We need to be circumspect when talking with authorities. We need to be circumspect about the unknown. We need to be be circumspect about opposition. We need to be circumspect about the mission. We need to be circumspect regarding boundaries.

Inside the Head of the Kingdom Minded :: KINGDOM FOCUS

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 01/07/24 by Pastor Steve Shields.

If you are a Christ Follower, you are a citizen of Heaven.

Citizenship gives us privileges before God. We have the privilege of being an heir. We have the privilege of having salvation. We have the privilege of being made righteous. We have the privilege of life eternal.

Citizenship gives us responsibilities before God. In the kingdom, it is actually a privilege to be given a responsibility.

Let’s take a look inside the head of the kingdom-minded. There is a concern for the well-being of the kingdom. There is a desire for renewal. There is a confidence in God’s provision. There is an awareness of God’s Providence. There is a respect for God’s call and the role you are to fill.

What is going on inside your head? Open your heart to God – surrender. Intentionally spend time in prayer with God. Willingly give yourself for the kingdom.

Pausing To Examine Your Life’s Meaning :: KINGDOM FOCUS

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 12/31/23

When do you take time to look at life?

Some people don’t because they run on automatic, are too distracted or are afraid to look.

Some people look fearlessly to see places to invest their lives to make a difference – an eternal difference.

Pausing and looking at life is a way you measure the meaning of your life. For Christ-followers, meaning begins with having a Kingdom mindset.

We know who we are in the Kingdom. We pay attention to what’s going on. We pray about what we see. We live our citizenship intentionally.

What meaning will your life have in 2024? Think like a citizen of the Kingdom. Make your priorities Kingdom priorities. Live like a citizen of the Kingdom.