Tuesday, December 18, 2012

#038: Countdown


In this week's podcast we are counting day the final days toward our move to our new location... oh and the last weekend before Christmas!!!  I talk about all the things going on at Church Requel, the cleaning party last Wednesday, the kids singing last Sunday, the new sign being installed this week, plans for our last Sunday at Ontario Christian Fellowship this coming Sunday, and our very first service on Christmas Eve in our new location at St. Luke's Point of Grace.  If you want to be a Church Requel insider, then you will want to hear this week's podcast!

The last 25 minutes is the talk from this past Sunday night.  Want to see more pictures of the kids singing? Check out this Facebook album.  Here's a link to the video we played right before the talk. It's called "The Christmas Scale." It provided me the inspiration for the talk, "Don't Miss The Joy." You can read the sermon notes here.

Music for this week's podcast is "The Final Countdown" by Europe.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

#037: Preparing To Move


This week I talk about all the news about our move to St. Luke's.  I mention all the pictures posted on our Facebook page last week at the decorating party. Finally you can listen to the sermon from this past Sunday evening, "What If We Knew We Couldn't Fail?"

Music for this week's podcast is "You Move Me" by Denver and the Mile High Orchestra.

Monday, December 3, 2012

#036: Our New Church Home


Listen to Sunday night's Church Requel talk about how God proved faithful to our small church despite my own lack of faith at times. Then, after the sermon, I'll share the behind-the-scenes, rest of the story of how St. Luke's Point of Grace will become the home of Church Requel.

Music for this week's podcast is "So Good" by Lincoln Brewster on his Real Life album.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

#035: God Is Faithful


This week on the podcast I talk very briefly... and cryptically... about the great things God has been doing this past week to provide us a place to meet beginning next year. We don't have all the details wrapped up yet, so I have to wait to tell you all about it. I hope to be able to share freely in next week's edition. For this week, we suffice to say that God is faithful! Also we share the talk from Sunday night at Church Requel, "Failing Forward: A Life of Sharing Christ." Enjoy!

Monday, November 19, 2012

#034: We Are Family


We are family! This podcast cover art shows me with two of my grandchildren. Our church has become a family too! This week I talk about the changes happening at Church Requel, looking for a new location, and the feedback that I've heard from our church family this past week.

[27:54] The sermon is titled "Failing Forward: A Life Of Contradictions."

Music for this week's podcast is "We Are Family" by Sister Sledge.

Monday, November 12, 2012

#033: Marriage Prayer


This week I talk about the future of Church Requel, some Westminster theology, and with current news of General Patraeus - 12 ways to affair-proof your marriage.

Here's what I have lined up for you this week:

[07:00] Future of Church Requel - Last night we faced some hard realities about the current finances of Church Requel.  Some changes will have to be made soon.  Listen for yourself to my talk last night and my follow up thoughts this morning.

[30:10] What is God, part 3 - We wrap up the question #4, "What is God?" from the Westminster Shorter Catechism. My discussion is primarily based on G.I. Williamson's book, "Westminster Shorter Catechism: For Study Classes."

[39:38] 12 Ways to Affair Proof Your Marriage - With the news of General Patraeus' resignation in the news every day, we all could use a good reminder of how to "affair-proof" our marriages. Many thanks to Den Guptill over on SermonCentral.com, who provided 8 of these ideas.

Music for this week's podcast is "Marriage Prayer" by John Waller from his album, As For Me And My House.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

#032: Kiss The Rain


How do we integrate God's Word into every area of our lives? In this week's podcast we talk about 6 ways to live a life of Biblical integrity using our 6 memory verses from the 40 Days In The Word.  I also talk about the recent decline in Apple's fortunes, about the Lord's Prayer, and question #4 - "What Is God?" - from the Westminster catechism.

Here's what I have lined up for you this week:

[9:00] Has Apple Gone Rotten? - Apple Company has been a winner both in terms of its products and its corporate and stock performance. But the last couple weeks have not gone so well.  I talk about the iPad mini and the expectations and disappointment of the recent quarter. I talk about the Saturday Night Life sketch a few week's ago.  Here's the YouTube link to the "Tech Talk" video. Here's an encouraging opinion from The Motley Fool about Apple stock price.

[22:35] The Lord's Prayer, People and Protection - We wrap up our 6-part model prayer discussion. This week - how we use the Lord's Prayer as the basis to pray for other people and for spiritual protection.

[31:17] Question 4b - "What Is God?" - We continue our theological discussion from the Westminster Confession and Catechism. Here's a link to G. I. Williamson's helpful book, "Westminster Shorter Catechism: For Study Classes."

[43:46] CR Sermon: "How To Integrate God's Word Into My Life" - This is the audio talk from Sunday night at Church Requel.  This sermon, written by Rick Warren earlier this year, wraps up our 40 Days In The Word series.

Music for this week's podcast is "Kiss The Rain" by Yiruma from his The Best Reminiscent 10th Anniversary album.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

#031: Back From The Storm


How should we interpret the text of the Bible?  Pastor Steve offers some practical advice for how to study the Bible. Also Mark talks about the topic of forgiveness in prayer and the 4th question in the Westminster Confession: "What is God?"

This week's podcast is published a couple days later than normal. I'm just returning from vacation.  Here's what I have lined up for you in this week's podcast:

[0:00]  Intro. I talk about my trip to Myrtle Beach and the stormy weather on the way back.

[13:45] Forgiveness and Prayer. We continue to consider the Lord's Prayer as our model for our daily prayers. In this week's podcast we discuss the issue of forgiveness - forgiving others and forgiving ourselves.

[25:25] Question 4. What is God? That's an uncomfortable question.  We're much more comfortable talking about Who is God? We'll take 3 podcast sessions to get started on this question. This theological study comes from G.I. Williamson's book on the Westminster Shorter Catechism.

[39:55] CR Sermon: "How To Interpret A Text." Steve does an excellent job teaching for me this week.  Here are some highlights. A verse of the Bible means what it means.  There may be many applications but only one meaning. There are no secrets in the Bible.  We should look for the most obvious meaning. Steve also shares some great advice about prayer. You can't fall when you're on your knees! If God does not give you what you're asking for, he will give you something better. We're not always good at asking for what is best for us. Prayer is the passwoord to all God wants to do in our life. Prayer is not a spare tire to be taken out when things go wrong.  Prayer is the steerin wheel that guides us! Finally this valuable tidbit: Prayerlessness is practical atheism! This is a great talk! Don't miss it! Thanks so much Pastor Steve!

Music for this week's podcast is The Storm from Ray Boltz's album, Allegiance.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

#030: Godly Training


The secret to great Bible study is asking great questions. In this week's podcast we talk about the 4 key questions we should ask each time we study God's Word. Our podcast is really godly training because we also talk about meditation on Scripture, prayer, and theology.

I'm publishing the podcast a day earlier than normal so that Mary Kay and I can get away a little sooner tonight after the CR worship service for a week's R&R. Here's what I have lined up for you in this week's podcast:

[05:19]  Meditation and S.P.A.C.E.P.E.T.S. I talk about the reason we should meditate on Scripture. Then we use an acrostic to remember the application questions we should ask when we meditate.

[17:25] 6-Part Model Prayer. We continue to consider the Lord's Prayer as our model for our daily prayers.

[28:19] Question 3. What's God's Word for anyway? This two-part answer transitions us into the rest of our theological study from G.I. Williamson's book on the Westminster Shorter Catechism.

[37:26] CR Sermon: "How To Study The Bible." I've prerecorded this week's 40 Days In The Word sermon for the podcast. We consider 4 questions in every Bible study. In this podcast we use Philippians 2:19-30 as an example of a Bible passage we will study together. At first glance it doesn't appear that there is much here. However, using the 4 questions, we discover 5 marks of a godly man or woman. Many thanks to Rick Warren for writing this sermon and making it available for us to use!

Music for this week's podcast is "Gonna Fly Now (Theme From Rocky)."

Monday, October 15, 2012

#029: Seeing Clearly Now


When we read the Bible, how can we see clearly what God wants us to see? In this podcast we'll 4 good things that happens when God opens my eyes. We'll talk about 5 ways to prepar ourselves to see what God wants me to see.

Here's what I have lined up for you in this week's podcast:

[8:00] 4 Questions To Ask Before Posting Political on Facebook or Twitter.  The Pastors.com staff put this good advice up on Aug. 14th. It seemed most appropriate now as we are entering the final weeks of the U.S. national election.  I talk about the importance of showing perfect courtesy to all people all the time.

[20:34] The 6-Part Model Prayer. We continue our discussion about our prayer life by looking at the model prayer Jesus gave us.  Most of us know this model prayer as "The Lord's Prayer." How can we use this prayer to form our own more personal prayer life?

 [32:26] Question 3 - What's God's Word For? We continue our discussion of the Westminster Confession with the important transition question. The answer to this question sets up the next 104 questions! Listen and you'll hear why. We continue to use G.I Williamson's Shorter Catechism book.

[45:15] CR Sermon: "Seeing What God Wants Me To See" In this 4th part of the 40 Days In The Word series we consider the subject of illumination. What happens when God opens my eyes? How can I prepare myself? You can follow along with the YouVersion sermon notes.

[1:40:15] Wrap Up - Friends invited us over after church so I didn't wrap up until Monday morning. Short and sweet!

Music for this week's podcast is "I Can See Clearly Now" by Johnny Nash.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

#028: Back From The Beach


The Bible is unlike any other book. There is a good reason it is called the HOLY Bible. It has the ability to change us in remarkable ways. Also Pastor Mark is back from his beach vacation.

Here's what I have lined up for you this week:

[0:00] Opening - I'm back from vacation and I promise not to talk about it too much!

[08:40] 10 Things God Can't Do.   I know this sounds wrong, but you'll be so encouraged when you hear this.  Thanks to Shannon O'Dell for his article in Pastors.com.

[24:00] Right Attitude of Prayer. We continue the series on prayer we began last week on the podcast. This week we consider what Jesus teaches about the attitude of prayer right before he teaches us the Lord's Prayer.

[39:39] 3 Characteristics of God's Word. This week in the doctrine segment we continue to look at question #2 of the Westminster Confession of Faith. We are using G.I. Williamson's instructional book: "The Westminster Shorter Catechism."

[53:36] CR Sermon: "How The Bible Changes Us." This sermon was written by Rick Warren and is the 3rd sermon in the 40 Days In The Word series. This is also the first sermon ever delivered by Pastor Steve Thoman at Church Requel. He did a great job!

[1:35:12] Wrap Up. I wrap up the podcast with some final thoughts.

Music for this week's podcast is "[Sittin' On] The Dock Of The Bay" by Otis Redding.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

#027: Trust The Bible!


The Bible is the most read book in history.  It’s the bestselling book in history.  And it is the most translated book in history.  Why is it the Word of God?  How do we know it is the Word of God?  In this week's podcast, we’re going to consider the question: "Why can I trust the Bible?"

Here's what I have lined up for you in this week's edition of the podcast:

[0:00] Intro - I talk about getting ready for the next two weeks of the 40 Days Campaign and getting prepped for vacation in Myrtle Beach with my dad.I mentioned our Facebook page with all the pictures and videos. Also we'd love to have you join us with the 40 Days In The Word Daily Devotionals.

[12:45] Prayer In God's Presence - This past week in one of the 40 Days In The Word devotionals, John Ortberg talked about abiding in God's Presence. It was a profound moment for me and sparked a multi-podcast conversation we'll be having about prayer.

[25:10] Have You Read Your Bible Today? - Pastors.com reviewed a study by Lifeway Research that only 19% of church attenders read their Bibles every day.  This is one of the big reasons we have chosen the 40 Days In The Word campaign.  We want every person connected with Church Requel to read their Bibles every day!

[34:38] Three Views of "Contained In" - We continue our doctrine study of the Westminster Confession of Faith. We are on question #2. Here is the book we are using: The Westminster Shorter Catechism by G. I. Williamson.

[44:29] CR Sermon: "Why Can I Trust The Bible?" - This week I have pre-recorded Sunday evening's sermon, written by Rick Warren, because of my vacation schedule. This does have an upside! We won't have time Sunday evening to talk about everything I would have liked to have discussed about why we can trust the Bible. You will hear more details in this recording that we actually could talk about during the sermon at Church Requel! Here are the YouVersion Sermon Notes for those who would like to follow.

[1:44:13] Wrap Up - Join me for our concluding prayer together. And be reminded that next week we will delay the publication of the podcast by a couple days.  Expect next week's edition to come out on Wednesday, October 10th.

Music for this week's podcast is "Your Words Are Life" from the I Believe album available from Amber Sky Records.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

#026: Rainy Picnic


When the wind blows the rain sideways and people still remain faithful to the picnic, something special is going on.  When is the pastor as much a cheerleader and encourager as he is a shepherd? Or maybe these all fit the job description! Join me in this 26th episode as we talk about soggy picnics and high spirits.  Also we kick off our 40 Days In The Word campaign this week!

Here's what I have lined up for you in this week's edition of the podcast:

[0:00] Intro - I talk about this past week getting prepped for the 40 Days in the Word campaign and the Fall Fun Picnic.

[16:17] Rainy Picnic Highlights - I describe the soggy day and sunny spirits.  I interview many of the folks there. When is a pastor more of a cheerleader?

[36:46] Faith Like A Child - Speaking of having so many children at Church Requel, what do we learn about the faith of kids? Jesus told us that we must have the faith of a child or we'd never see Heaven.  What did he mean? Thanks to Joe Farnello at SermonCentral.com.

[50:15] The Rule of Life - Last week we finished question #1 of the Westminster Confession of  Faith. The chief end of man is the give glory to God and enjoy Him forever. But how do we do that? Is there a rule of life... a guidebook?  Based on Westminster Shorter Catechism by G. I. Williamson.

[1:01:55] CR Sermon: "How To Build My Life On The Bible" - This is the kick-off sermon for the 40 Days in the Word campaign, orginally written and delivered by Rick Warren to Saddleback Community Church in January 2012. We learn 5 ways to build our life on the solid foundation of God's Word.

Music for this week's podcast is "Bring The Rain" by Mercy Me.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

#025: Football Is Back!


Football! The very word brings to mind cooler evening temperatures, the smell of grass, and the crunch of football pads. Catch up with me in this week's podcast as we talk about football, 40Days in the Word, the ethical issues of using someone else's sermons, and the CR weekend sermon, "Tackling Treachery."

[0:30] Intro - I talk about the surreal Saturday morning I had when I watched my grandson Grayden play tackle football. I review this past week and the changeover in sermon preparation.

[12:50] 40 Days In The Word - I discuss the new sermon series by Rick Warren and the work I've done this past week to get ready.  I then review the campaign coming up in another week at CR.  I hope everyone at CR and in our podcast audience will join us for the 40 Days of Devotionals. This is free!

[26:01] Preaching Someone Else's Sermon - What are the practical and ethical issues of preaching someone else's sermons.  I talk about 4 advantages of using someone else's sermons AND I review 4 considerations to make before doing this.

[40:02] What Does "Chief End" Mean? - This will wrap up our first question from the Westminster Confession of Faith Shorter Catechism: "What is the chief end of man?" You can pick up a copy of G. I. Williams' excellent book here.

[49:27] CR Sermon: "Tackling Treachery" - How do we respond when we are persecuted? What happens when the political winds shift away from us? Join me for 3 choices we must make consistently over our lifetimes if we want to be able to respond like Daniel did when he faced the den of lions.

[1:28:50] Wrap Up - Listen to my thoughts on this Sunday night following the Church Requel service tonight and the Pavilion service this morning.

Music for this week's podcast is "Drum Cadences (w/band vocals)" by The Ohio State University Marching Band 2002.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

#024: The New Kindles


The new Kindles are here! The new Kindles are here! Do I sound like a kid at Christmas? I have to admit that the Kindle device has captured this pastor's reading heart over the past few years.  Not only me, but my entire family enjoys reading and sharing books with one another. So this podcast is a homage to the announcement this past week about the new devices coming out this fall.  Here's what we have lined up for you on the podcast this week.

[06:40] 40 Days In The Word - You'll hear the behind the scenes discussion this past week as our leadership team chose the theme of "40 Days In The Word" as our new sermon series beginning Sunday, September 23rd.  Here is a link for you to signup for your own daily devotional during the 40 Days sermon series.

[20:46] The New Kindles - Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon.com, revealed the new devices this past Thursday.  You can watch his entire presentation on YouTube.  Listen to Len Edgerly's Kindle Chronicles podcast.  Len went to the event. You'll hear his immediate review along with many interviews.

[33:43] Bringing God Glory - What does it mean to bring God glory? Doesn't He already have glory without us?  Join me for this second part of the first question from the Westminster Catechism. What is the chief end of man? ... to bring God glory and to enjoy Him forever!

[43:05] CR Sermon: Bending Without Breaking - This is part 14 of our Summer Singles series... our next to the last one!  We learn 4 ways to keep my faith flexible in tough times from the life of Elijah in 1 Kings 19.  Follow along with the YouVersion Sermon Notes.

[1:23:40] Wrap Up - Join me for my final thoughts from this weekend's Church Requel worship service.  I'm tired and hungry... and frustrated! Where was everyone tonight?  We had a huge number of visitors and guests, but many of our regulars weren't there. You'll hear the gut reaction of this pastor.

Music for this week's podcast is "Fly Me Away" by Annie Little from the Stole My Heart album. Also, you can watch the original very cool Amazon 2009 commercial here.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

#023: Labor Day Special


Happy Labor Day! Welcome to this special holiday Labor Day Special edition of the Church Requel Audio Podcast! I've got a surprise for you at the beginning of the podcast. HINT: best played first thing Monday morning. Ha!  After we have some chit chat time together, here's what we'll be talking about this week:

[12:49] Labor Day Inspiration - How do we worship God with our labor? What positive influences for Christ might we have with those fellow employees we work with? Or negatively, how might we be turning people away from Christianity by the way we work? I share some excellent insights by Melvin Newland from his 1991 sermon.

[39:11] Chief End of Man - This week we begin a new feature of the Church Requel Audio Podcast. Each week we will spend a few minutes talking about our Christian doctrine spelled out in the Westminster Confession of Faith.  We'll be using this excellent book by G. I. Williamson, in case you would like to buy yourself a copy to follow along.

[50:00] CR Sermon: Overcoming Giants, Part 2 - Here is the conclusion of my 2-part sermon on how we overcome giant problems in our lives.  The sermon is based on the story of David and Goliath in 1 Samuel 17.  You can follow the YouVersion sermon notes here.

[1:28:00] Wrap Up - Listen to my quick recap of our evening together at Church Requel.
Music for this week's CR podcast is "9 to 5 - The Musical (Original Cast Recording)" by Allison Janney, Megan Hilty, Charlie Pollock, Stephanie J. Block and Ensemble.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

#022: Overcoming Giants - Part 1


This week we listen to the children of Church Requel read us the story of David and Goliath in 1 Samuel 17. Then we hear a fascinating and insightful discussion with these same children about the meaning of the story.  Finally we listen to this weeks sermon, part 1 of "Overcoming Giants."

Music for this week's podcast is Giants by Evan Kraft from the Giants album.

Monday, August 13, 2012

#021: Redemption


In this episode I talk about redemption, what it is and how it should impact us.  We have stories of redemption, both in and out of the church. Catch up with Mary Kay and me and hear about the changes I've made in my online security.

Here's what I have lined up for you this week:

[00:35] Introduction and Chatter - I share how Roc and Kim became such good friends with Mary Kay and me.  I tell the story of how Mary Kay and I had both a Catholic priest and a Protestant pastor officiate at our wedding.  Our 33rd anniversary is next week and we are celebrating with our friends, Roc and Kim.  Then I introduce the content on this week's podcast.

[13:10] Backups, Passwords, and Online Security - I talk about Mat Honan's story of hackers breaking into his online accounts and wiping his Macbook, iPhone and iPad.  I wrote about this last week.  In the podcast I talk a little more about what I've done since and the challenge of changing everything online.

[33:00] Garbage Redemption - Tara Woodard-Lehman, a Presbyterian chaplain at Princeton University, writes about her secret love of garbage, and how her father taught her to restore that which was lost and disposable.  She and her students have created a mosaic filled with broken pieces.

[38:24] Love and Redemption - David Brooks, a columnist for the NY Times, received an amazing essay from an 80-year old man, redeemed by the unconditional love of his wife.  Fifty-five years into their marriage, she developed Alzheimers and he writes about taking care of her.

[50:17] Redeemer Kinsman - Pastor Jon Miller writes about the Redeemed over at SermonCentral.com.  He also takes his Bible references from Ruth 2 and gives us a very good explanation of the connection of redeemer between Boaz and Christ.

[1:04:45] CR Sermon: "Sealed With A Sandal" - This is the replay of Sunday evening's sermon at Church Requel.  Listen as I talk about loyalty, love and redemption.

[1:31:32] Wrap Up - I review what happened at Church Requel Sunday evening and wrap up the podcast.  There will be no podcast next week.  We'll return on Monday, August 27th, with Episode #22.

Music for this week's podcast is "Redeemed," by Big Daddy Weave, from their album, Love Come To Life.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

#020: Temptation


In this episode I talk about Temptation, what it is and how we should handle it.  We consider temptation from a Biblical spiritual perspective as well as physical and psychological.

Here's what I have lined up for you this week: 

[00:25] Intro and Personal - Catch up with me on this past week. The good news about working a month ahead. Going to the museum with Grayden. Celebrating my sister's 49th birthday. Intro to rest of podcast.

[14:41] 5 Steps of Temptation - Here are the basics of temptation, what we might call Temptation 101.  Lessons from Satan's temptation of Eve in Genesis.  The devil uses the same strategies against us today.  Many thanks to Dr. Clay Hallmark for his 2004 sermon, "Dealing With Temptation."

[26:53] Don't Resist, Refocus! - This comes from Pastor Rick Warren's July 9th tweet on Twitter: "You defeat temptation by refocusing, not resisting. What you resist, persists. Instead just turn your attention elsewhere."

[31:21] Use Your Mind To Change Your Brain - If we've learned nothing else, we know this: resisting temptation can be extremely challenging. None of us is a stranger to temptation, but nothing makes it clearer how powerful craving and desire can be than when you watch a person's life begin to unravel because he/she gave in. Dr. Rebecca Gladding provides tips on the Psychology Today website about resisting temptation.  Read about her 4 steps to change your brain... and cravings.

[45:54] 3 Temptations That Can Destroy Your Marriage - Denver clinical psychologist and marriage therapist Dr. Susan Heitler writes about the 3 "A's" - three main temptations that destroy marriages.

[59:45] CR Sermon "Playing With Seduction" - This is the talk from Sunday evening at Church Requel.  Our text is from Judges 16, the story of Samson and Delilah.  We learn about 4 sin danger zones to avoid. You can follow the sermon notes at YouVersion.com.

[1:35:00] Wrap Up - I wrap up the podcast with a short review of the Church Requel service Sunday night.  It was an emotional evening.  I talk about how I have struggled in the past recovering from such emotional involvement with a sermon.  You can watch the video, "Free" by Journey Box Media at YouTube.  You can download it for a fee at WorshipHouse Media.

Music for this week's podcast comes from "Temptation" by Diana Krall on her Temptation album.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

019: Sweet Sweet Smile


The smiles you see above are those of Mary Kay and me back in 1978 on one of our very first dates.  I'm hoping this podcast will bring a smile to your face as well. Here's what I have lined up for you this week.

[05:30] Three Good News Stories - Mary Kay and I loved watching the Olympics' opening ceremonies Friday night.  This morning I was reading The Week magazine and came across three good news stories.  (Sorry, I can't provide a link.)

[12:08] 10 Church Growth Tips From Mayberry - Artie Davis, pastor of Cornerstone Community Church, wrote an article for Pastors.com entitled, "7 Church Growth Tips from Mayberry."  I added 3 of my own to round it up to 10.  If you liked The Andy Griffith Show, you'll love this section of the podcast.

[25:52] Congrats to Len Edgerly / Jeff Bezos Interview - Len Edgerly celebrated 4 years this past week with his podcast, The Kindle Chronicles.  To help him celebrate this achievement, Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, gave Len an interview for his podcast.  He talks about everyone at Amazon thinking of themselves as a missionary.

[32:15] Quarterly EPS of Facebook, Amazon, & Apple - The Daily wrote a piece about companies Missing The Mark.  I followed up in this podcast with a discussion of the big week in earnings results this past week from Facebook, Amazon & Apple.  I share my thoughts about what makes each a great - or poor - investment choice. Here are the links I refer to in the podcast: (1)  New York Times Bits on Facebook's earnings; (2) WSJ's Marketwatch on Amazon; (3) Steven Windwalker's analysis on Amazon; (4) Mashable's Infographic comparing Walmart and Amazon; (5) Forbes' 7 positive trends in Apple's earnings.

[1:03:25] CR Sermon: "When Too Much Is Not Enough" - Our talk this weekend comes from Judges 7:2-8 about Gideon. We depend on too many things that often prove to be not enough.  Here are the YouVersion online sermon notes.

Music for this week's podcast is "Sweet, Sweet Smile" by the Carpenters from their 25th Anniversary album.

Monday, July 23, 2012

018: The Loneliest Number


This week's podcast theme is teamwork. Togetherness. Not being Lone Ranger Christians.  If you're task oriented like me, how do you allow others to help and use their gifts and talents?  If you don't feel like you have much to offer, how can you see your true gifts and abilities?  Here's what we have lined up for this week.

[4:45] The Olympics and Our Spiritual Disciplines - The Olympics begin this Friday! What can we learn about our own spiritual growth by watching these extraordinary athletes?

[15:25] T.E.A.M.W.O.R.K. - Have you ever hear this acrostic? Together Everyone Achieves More With Ongoing Respect and Kindness?  I heard this quite often as a high school football players.  Join me in the locker room for some inspirational coaching!

[22:27] 4 Steps to Break Bad Habits - I take a page out of Dr. Oz's playbook with this four-part plan.  We all find ourselves in bad habits from time to time.  How do we escape?  Here's the link at RealAge.com.

[30:00] Keep A Food Journal - Scientists at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle conducted a study of older overweight and obese women.  What was the top conclusion of what really worked?  Keeping a food diary! If you want to join me using My Fitness Pal, my user name is mpiercecfp.

[39:46] 8 Measures of Personal Discipleship - Lifeway Research conducted a study of more than 4,000 people about their spiritual lives and level of maturity.  We talk about these attributes of discipleship. You can follow Ed Stezer on Twitter.

[54:41] A Christian's Response to Evil - I took a few additional minutes Sunday morning to remember the grieving families in Colorado.  How does a pastor respond to such senseless, tragic evil? My thanks to Pastors.com who provided this link to one Christian woman's response. Marie Isom writes in her A Miniature Clay Pot blog about her experience in that Aurora, CO theater a mere 40-50 feet away from the shooter.

[1:05:40] CR Sermon "One Is The Loneliest Number" - I talk about 3 reasons why God never intended us to serve alone and 4 practical tips of what we can do about isolation.  In the sermon I mention this online gifts assessment tool. You can follow the sermon notes here.

Music for this week's podcast - an obvious choice - is "One" by Three Dog Night from the album Three Dog Night - The Complete Hit Singles.

Subscribe to this audio podcast!  It's available every week on iTunes or for any other mp3 player.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

017: Crossover


This week's Church Requel Audio Podcast theme is Crossover.  How do we handle those crossover, crucible, life-changing events in our lives?  Plus some more fun and practical new developments in Mark and Mary Kay's life this week.  Here's what we have lined up for you.

[5:30] Pulminary Embolisms - I talk about my crossover event from 2007.  I spent 10 days in the hospital as a result of unexplained blood clots in my lungs.  What were those first few hours like, when I didn't know if I'd live another day? Yep - that was definitely a "crossover!"

[18:00] My Fitness Pal - Mary Kay and I have been using a new app this week. My Fitness Pal tracks our diet and exercise.  I tell you why this is such a great thing and why you should join us.  We'd love to have you be our friends on My Fitness Pal.

[29:45] iPad Mini Speculation - I wrote here and here about my own speculations regarding the possibilities of a new, smaller and less expensive iPad from Apple.  In this segment of the podcast, I expand on the possibilities.

[44:45] Jonathan Edward's Farewell Sermon - Jonathan Edwards is considered by many to be the greatest theologian America has ever known.  Yet, after 23 years as a senior pastor of his church, he was asked to leave.  I share an excepts from Jonathan Edwards: A Life and from his "Farewell Sermon."  Wouldn't you have liked to have been a fly on the wall in THAT church service!

[1:02:45] Church Requel Sermon: Crossover - Here's the talk from Sunday night. It's based on Exodus 14. We consider 4 characteristics of crossover events as well as the one thing we must do during a crossover.  Here are the YouVersion sermon notes(Sorry we didn't get the audio level as good as we should have this evening.  I did the best I could in post-production.

[1:33:00] Wrap-Up - Just a short wrapup tonight.  Mary Kay is grilling hamburgers upstairs and I'm hungry! Ha!

Music for this week's podcast is from "Changes" by Butterfly Boucher and David Bowie from the Shrek 2 Album.

Subscribe to this audio podcast!  It's available every week on iTunes or for any other mp3 player.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

016: Wrestling With God


This weekend's podcast is a smackdown good time as we discuss the theme of "Wrestling With God!" Here's what you will hear:

[03:33] Authentic High School Wrestling - Real wrestling, the kind you find in high schools and colleges may be the toughest and most demanding sport.  We'll hear one high school wrestler's essay about a day in the life of a wrestler.

[10:25] Jonathan Edwards and Wrestling With God - Mark talks a bit about Jonathan Edwards and refers to two different books.  The biography, Jonathan Edwards: A Life by George M. Marsden, is available in Kindle format.  The book of Edwards' previously unbublished sermons titled, The Blessing of God edited by Michael D. McMullen, is not available yet on the Kindle.  Mark then reads an excerpt from Edwards' sermon, The Way to Obtain the Blessing of God Is Not to Let Him Go Except He Bless Us. CORRECTION: I quoted a couple of dates regarding Jonathan Edwards life as "1958."  Clearly I meant to say "1758." Jonathan Edwards was a pre-revolutionary Massachusetts pastor.

[28:12] Overcoming Problems With Your Quiet Time - Mark continues his discussion from Podcast 013, in which he describes the Daily Quiet Time with God.  In this podcast, we talk about overcoming 4 problems - the problems of discipline, distractions, dryness, and diligence.

[50:00] Sermon: "Wrestling With God" -  Here's the MAIN EVENT! This is the weekend sermon given to Church Requel on Sunday evening, July 8th.  Mark talks about 6 takedown lessons for real God wrestling.

[1:29:00] Wrap-Up - People tell me that the last part of the podcast, this "wrap-up" is their favorite part.  I talk about the evening right after the CR worship service, trying to remember all the cool things that happened.  Tonight I try to give you a sense of all the communications that happen between a pastor and his people - and my struggle to remember everything.

Music for this week's podcast includes "Let's Get Ready To Rumble" by Michael Buffer on the album, ESPN Sport Presents: Jock Jams, Volume 1 and "Get Ready For This" by Power Music on the album, The Biggest Loser Workout Mix - Sports Stadium Anthems.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

015: Declaration of Independence


This week we celebrate America's 236th birthday, the day the Declaration of Independence was signed.  So we dedicate this week's podcast to some thoughts about independence and also our new beginnings as a Christ-follower.

[3:30] Declaration of Independence for the Christ Follower. Four years ago I dedicated this entire week around the 4th of July to thinking about Thomas Jefferson's famous line, "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness."  What is the connection, if any, between our country's Declaration of Independence and the Christ-follower's own independence?  I share the discoveries of my thinking in this conversation with our podcast audience.

[40:50] The Story of My Own Baptism. I promised the folks at Church Requel that I would tell them the story of my own baptism on this week's podcast.  Grab a cup of coffee and sit down for this background story.  I became a Christ-follower when I was 9, but I wasn't baptized until the age of 27.  Today I'll tell you how my own baptism came about.

[58:22] CR Sermon: "Baptism." In this short talk given Sunday evening at Church Requel, I'll answer 4 questions about what we believe about baptism.  Why should I be baptized? What does it mean? Why be baptized by immersion? Who should be baptized?

[1:13:42] Reflections from the Baptisms at CR Sunday. Sunday night I was weary but thrilled with the way the evening had gone.  I share from my heart the good and the bad... yes, we had ourselves a bit of a problem tonight.  You'll have to listen to know what it was.  But the overall result of Church Requel tonight was marvelous and uplifting.  You'll hear a very tired Pastor Mark share heart to heart in a longer-than-normal wrap up.

Music for this week's podcast is America Fantasia by Christopher Todd Landor from the album, American Celebration - The Ultimate Patriotic Music Collection.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

014: Selling Short


This week's podcast focuses on selling ourselves short. It's so easy to do. We settle for less than what God has designed us to enjoy and to become.

Our music this week comes from Broda, specifically "Don't Sell Yourself Short" from her Spiral Staircase album.

[6:46] 4 ways that Mark has sold himself short in his past. Take a stroll down memory lane with me and maybe learn a few things about me you didn't know.  Here are 4 different ocassions when I just didn't have a big enough picture of what I could do or accomplish or become.  All 4 became great learning opportunities for me.

[15:45] Interview with Jillian. My daughter shares one time in her life when she has sold herself short. She also talks about her study to become a counselor and how people often need to see themselves in a new and fresh way.

[25:27] Interview with Lisa and Diana. Lisa Hatfield and Diana Devolder came to visit me last Thursday to record their baptism testimonial videos.  While they were here, we sat down and talked about how they have sometimes sold themselves short.

[40:06] 10 Key Points To Remember from Rick Warren.  At the end of 2011, Pastor Rick held a video conference call with many small church pastors.  I was included in that call.  As pastors we live with the constant tension between the ideal (our dream for our church) and the real (how things actually are). These are 10 key points Rick reminded us about and that I thought would be worth remembering on our "selling short" podcast halfway through the year.

[55:00] Sermon: "Selling Short"  - As American Christ followers we too readily give up our God given birthrights. We may not sell them for a bowl of soup, like Esau, but we do too easily sell ourselves short!  Here are 4 ways we sell ourselves short.  You can follow along with the YouVersion Sermon Notes here.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

013: Day Of Rest


This week on Church Requel Audio Podcast #13, we focus on the topic of the sabbath, also known as the day of rest.  Most of us don't get enough rest. Most of us don't connect enough with God.  After catching up with Mark and what's been happening this past week you'll hear:

[12:30] Getting Enough Sleep - Some of us are early risers and some are sleeper-iners. Is there an actual physiological difference between those of us who get up early and those who sleep longer?  The folks from NetDoctor.co.uk have some surprising research in their article, "Are You Getting Enough Sleep?"  Shape Magazine also provides some great info on the many wonderful benefits of sleep: "6 Reasons You Need More Sleep."

[25:30] Daily Quiet Time - The purpose of the Sabbath is more than about our rest. It's also our day to connect with God. We don't have to wait for that one day.  We can connect with God every day, even if for just a little while.  Pastor Mark talks about the daily quiet time, why we should have it and how to go about it.

[54:45] Benefits Of A Nap - Recent research has proven that there are great benefits to taking a nap every afternoon.  Two articles Pastor Mark refers to in this segment comes from The Art of Manliness website, "8 Benefits of Napping" and from WebMD, "The Secret (and Surprising) Power of Naps."

[1:05:45] CR Sermon: "The First Day Off" - In this second sermon of the Summer Singles, Mark talks about the very first day off. This wasn't a day off by man, but by God Himself!  We learn 4 reasons why the Sabbath is important to us. And we hear 7 hints for making the Sabbath a reality in our lives.  If you'd like to follow the sermon notes, they are available at YouVersion.com.  At Church Requel we also watched a video about the Sabbath by The Veracity Project called "1 Outta 7."

Music for this week's podcast includes "Rest" by Big Daddy Weave on the One And Only album.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

012: Hatfields & McCoys


Our Church Requel Podcast is loaded with audio goodness for you this week!  After catching up with Mark and what's been happening this past week you'll hear:

[09:21] Hatfields & McCoys - The History Channel broke a record for basic cable with the most watched show over this Memorial Day week.  Mark talks about what made it such compelling television and draws some surprising lessons from The Sermon On The Mount. Also check out Mark's blog article detailing the 5 beliefs that make me a Hatfield & McCoy.

[23:45] Stock Market Blues - The stock market fell 275 points on Friday plunging the year to date return into negative territory for the first time this year.  Mark takes off his cowboy hat and puts on his financial planning hat as he talks about 4 things to remember when the stock market goes down.

[35:30] Christian Nation? - New census data was released this month showing that Mormons and Muslims are growing fast.  Additionally a new research study by the University of Chicago ranked the U.S. as the 5th most religious country in the world.  Mark points listeners to the ASARB 2010 U.S. Religion Census and explains how to discover the national ranking of counties as well as checking out individual counties religious census through the ARDA.

[48:02] This Is Your Life - Michael Hyatt began a new podcast on Feb. 15th.  Mark talks about the podcast and why it has been so helpful to him.  We listen to a sample from podcast #3 on how any leader can develop vision.  Also here's a link to Hyatt's new book, Platform.

[1:00:00] CR Sermon: "God's First Command" - In this first sermon of the Summer Singles series, Mark talks about God's very first command to mankind: to rule Planet Earth.  Mark talks about the difference between ruling responsibly and exploitation.  If you'd like to follow the sermon notes, they are available at YouVersion.com.

Music for this week's podcast includes the themesong from Hatfields & McCoys by John Debney and Tony Morales, "Stock Market Blues" by Gypsey Carns, "Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics" by Matt Munhall, and "The Best Is Yet To Come" by Frank Sinatra.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

11: Holding On To The Eternal Ticket

Happy Memorial Day!  Monday podcasts are always special here at Church Requel.  Here's what's included on this holiday edition of the Church Requel Podcast:

[8:45] Zach Lystedt is headstrong, according to The Daily.  Listen to the story of this brave young man who suffered a dibilitating concussion while playing football.  He has turned his personal tragedy into a benefit for thousands of others.

[13:36] Why Facebook'sIPO fizzled.  If you can get your hands on a hot new stock, you probably don't want it.

[18:12] Excerpt Interview of Mark by Len Edgerly from The Kindle Chronicles 198.

[22:04] The YouVersion Blog released big news about The Bible App!

[27:06] Check out the Instacast app - only if you love podcasts AND have an IOS device.

[31:06] 1 Star Ratings - Marco Arment and Dan Benjamin talk about 1 Star Ratings in their Build and Analyze Podcast 77.  Mark talks about his Christian lesson learned from Amazon when he thinks about giving a 1 star rating.

[48:00] The Right To Be Here - Pastor Mike Erre and Ken Coleman have a conversation on the Catalyst Podcast Episode 179 about Mike's son, Seth, who has Down Syndrome.  Mark follows up with his own story about Austen.

[59:38] Listen to the final sermon in The God Life series - "Holding On To The Eternal Ticket."

Music for this week's podcast is from Chicago: "I'm A Man," available on the Chicago Transit Authority Album (Remastered) - original from 1969.

Monday, May 21, 2012

The Productive and Effective Christ Follower

This week's Church Requel podcast is loaded with great listening content for you. 
  • K-Mart Christmas in May - Rankin Paynter demonstrates Christ-like behavior when he buys out $200,000 of a local K-Mart store (3:16)
  • Facebook Accountability - The initial public offering took place last Friday.  Two weeks ago I made my predictions public on this podcast.  Let's check in and see how well those prognastications turned out. (9:09)
  • Last Tuesday my friend Len Edgerly, the voice behind the popular The Kindle Chronicles podcast stopped in Mansfield for a visit with me.  We both came armed with microphones.  I talked to Len about the labor of love involved each week in producing TKC. (15:37)
  • Mad Men and Christianity - what does the wildly popular AMC television show have to do with Christianity, you ask?  This past Saturday the Mansfield News Journal published my Viewpoint article in which I answer this question.  My daughter Jillian reads this piece for you. (35:51)
  • Rotten Banana Christianity - listen to the funny responses of the kids at Church Requel last night when they were offered rotten bananas during the Children's sermon. (44:35)
  • Church Requel Sunday night sermon: "The Effective and Productive Christ Follower." (53:30) We learn the what, 2 whys and the how of becoming a fruitful servant for Christ.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Influential MOMs

During this Mother's Day podcast, Mark talks about (1) Ivy League Janitor, (2) Same Sex Marriage and the Pulpit, (3) House Church, (4) Re-using Used Sermons, (5) Moms who Model, Observe, and Motivate.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Love Is More Than A Feeling

In this week's Church Requel podcast Mark talks about

  1. churches being sensitive to single people.  Less than half of the U.S. Population is married now.  How should that change the way we lead our churches? 
  2. The Wildcat roller coaster is closing at Cedar Point. It started running in 1970, the same year Mark and his brother, Todd, went to Cedar Point for the first time. 
  3. What's really the difference between leadership and fellowship?  Mark considers that maybe the two are not as different as some people think. 
  4. Facebook's Initial Public Offering is less than two weeks away.  Will it be a good investment?  Mark puts his investment cap back on and looks at the numbers.  
  5. Cutting Room Floor segment - what do you do when you have a topic that could contain so much material... say, "The Good Samaritan" parable?
  6. Church Requel's Sermon from May 6th: "Love Is More Than A Feeling." We consider six lessons we learn about loving other people from The Good Samaritan story. 
  7. Mark's wrap-up after church Sunday evening.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Keeping My Eyes On The Ball

In this week's Church Requel podcast, Pastor Mark talks about
  1. The NAMI Ohio Conference this past weekend with Mary Kay
  2. Apple's quarterly earnings - what can we learn about reality and perception?
  3. Facebook Loneliness - Online Social Networking is only one tool for connection
  4. Cutting Room Floor - Using creativity, relevance, and ending twist for presentations
  5. Sermon: "Keeping My Eyes On The Ball" - learning perseverance lessons from the Sower and the Seed AND baseball.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Learning To Be My Own Boss

In this week's Church Requel podcast Pastor Mark talks about the following:

  1. Reflections on death of Chuck Colson;
  2. Management Lessons from Secret Service Scandal; 
  3. 6 Reasons Young People Leave Church; 
  4. Writing Talks with an Early Ending Clause; 
  5. Handy Habits - the Children's sermon this weekend; 
  6. Sermon - "How To Be My Own Boss" from Luke 12.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Living The Good Life

In this week's podcast, Pastor Mark reflects on the April 15th CR service.  Then we hear a clip from this past week's episode of The Middle, where the family talks about changing churches.  Pastor Mark then considers why some people change churches - and why most people don't. We then consider different preaching styles and why Mark has adopted a conversational approach.  Then we visit the sermon "cutting room floor," where we find what didn't make it into last week's talk.  Finally we hear the sermon from Sunday, April 15th, Part 2 of the God Life series: "Living The Good Life."

Monday, April 9, 2012

The Easter Weekend

Pastor Mark talks about the Easter weekend, including his talk for the Good Friday service at Ontario Christian Fellowship, conversations with several CR folks, his children home for the holidays, and the Easter sermon, "The Divine Nature."

Monday, April 2, 2012

When Heart Meets Mind

We serve God best with ALL of our hearts and ALL of our minds.  Join Pastor Mark Pierce for this peek at the emotional life of Jesus on Palm Sunday. Plus Pastor Mark talks about conversations with his brother and the men's breakfast.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Nothing Will Separate Me From God's Love

Here's what we have queued up in this week's Church Requel podcast.  For those that want to skip right to the weekly sermon, fast forward to the 25-minute mark.
  1. Reflections from the Momentum Conference I attended last week
  2. Encouraging Conversations and the First Steps Principle
  3. Handling Post Sermon Depression Syndrome.
  4. The children’s sermon - Kid’s Say The darndest things!
  5. This weekend’s talk: “Nothing Will Separate Me From God’s Love”

When God says that NOTHING will separate us from His love in Christ, He means it. In this final message from Romans 8, Pastor Mark explores just how exhaustive and far reaching God's love really is. 

Monday, March 19, 2012

Hard Times Will Not Defeat Me

What is the Christian concept of winning and losing? Join Mark Pierce of Church Requel as we learn from Romans 8:35-37 that "Hard Times Will Not Defeat Me!" Also in this podcast: (1) what the podcast is becoming; (2) the prayer of a church planter; (3) Observations on the setup team; (4) Disability Awareness Worship; (5) Additional insight into this weekend's message.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Jesus Is Making The Case For Me

Here is this week's Church Requel podcast.  For those of you who only want to hear the sermon, skip forward to the 13 minute 40 second mark.  If you play the whole thing, you'll hear a description of the tearful entry of a new CR parishioner into our lobby - someone we've been praying a great deal for lately.  You'll also hear the Children's Sermon, "Dirty Windows."

Finally you'll hear the main talk of the evening, "Jesus Is Making The Case For Me." Guilt can actually be a good thing if it leads to confession and repentance. But what if you still feel guilty after God forgives you? This is false guilt, which can lead to anxiety, stress, depression, and feelings of unworthiness. Join me as we study Romans 8:34 and learn how to handle false G.U.I.L.T. Interspersed throughout you'll hear my honest reflections about another great evening at Church Requel last night. Enjoy!

Monday, March 5, 2012

God Is On My Side

Are you struggling with the enemies of challenges, deprivations, or injustice? In this talk we will learn 3 things you can do during tough times to remember that God is on your side.  Join me in this talk from March 4th as we study Romans 8:31-33 together.

Monday, February 27, 2012

God Saves Us

We learn about the 5 Links in God's Plan of Salvation.  We start with the simple children's sermon - simple but filled with truth! Then we put this into the theological language of Romans 8:29-30. Finally Pastor Mark answers 3 questions about God's unconditional election of Christ-followers.

Monday, February 20, 2012

2012 CR Annual Meeting

Here are excerpts from the first-ever Church Requel annual meeting. Listen to the stories of Lisa, Randy, Sheri, Jonathan, Steve, and Todd. God has blessed the CR ministry so much this past year.  We hope this recap is also a blessing to you!

Monday, February 13, 2012

God Works All Things For My Good

One of the greatest promises of the Bible can be found in Romans 8:28.  We learn all 6 ingredients as well as 4 ways to remember and apply this great promise in our lives.

Monday, February 6, 2012

The Spirit Helps My Weakness

Most of us Christ-followers find a gap between our talk and our walk. Today we learn that, on our own, we are too weak to live a righteous live that pleases God. The good news is that Romans 8:26-27 teaches us that the Spirit of God will help our weakness! Join Pastor Mark as we learn 4 glimpses of what happens on God's side when we pray for strength. Click here for the YouVersion LIVE Event notes that go along with this talk.

Monday, January 30, 2012

My H.O.P.E. Is R.E.A.L.

If you are a Christ-follower then you have real hope. There's nothing you can do to make your hope any more real! However, you may not REALIZE your real hope all the time. Join Pastor Mark to learn 4 ways we can know our H.O.P.E. is R.E.A.L.

Monday, January 23, 2012

My Body Will Be Made Perfect

Romans 8:23 talks about our redeemed bodies. What will that be like? Join Pastor Mark as we discuss the physical continuity of our resurrected bodies. Also listen to Rachel Barr's story and why she also groans for her new and perfect body.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Creation Groans

We live in a world of brokenness. Things aren't "right." Even creation longs for the world to be made right again. Join Pastor Mark of Church Requel as we study Romans 8:19-22.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Suffering Now, Glory Later

The Bible teaches about the reality of suffering for Christ-followers. However, it also talks just as clearly about the glory to be revealed in Christ-followers later. Join Pastor Mark of Church Requel as we study Romans 8:17-18.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

I Am A Child Of God

Join Pastor Mark as we talk about the consequences of being a child of God. What would 2012 be like if every morning, when you wake up, you hear God's Spirit whisper to you: "You is smart. You is kind. You is important?"