Daniel Darling, author, pastor, speaker

Monday Notes

I haven't had as much time to read lately, but when I do find time, I'm reading a fantastic book by my good friend, Dr. Bruce Baker, Senior Pastor of Jenison Bible Church in Hudsonville, MI. The book is on a subject that very few seem to have written on. It's entitled, The Road to Maturity. Its a well-written, easy-to-read, often humorous, sometimes fictionalized treatment of a serious issue. Christian maturity is often a vague concept. What is growth? How do we know we've grown? What discplines foster growth? Besides being a solidly biblical and creative pastor, Dr. Bruce is a fantastic writer. This book is really challening me. I'd encourage you to check it out here. Some other notes: Read the story of the great hymn, Great Is They Faithfulness  A Fantastic sermon by Ray Pritchard on John 7:37-39...

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Stones of Grace

 I love preaching. I love to study. I love how the Holy Spirit puts it all together and uses an unworthy messenger like me. I love every Sunday of church. But every once in a while, I really love preaching, which is to say that the message has so totally overwhelmed me. This coming Sunday is one.  The message: Stones of Grace. The text is John 8:1-11. Its the story of the woman caught in adultery. Some don't believe this was part of the original canon, I do, because its so encapsulates John's theme of grace. Here's a short sample of the message:  We don’t quite understand grace because we don’t want to. We want to think that it’s a grace just wide enough for our little indiscretions but no wider. We want to think that we’ve done something just marvelous enough to merit Heaven, but better than the poor saps who will...

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Return to the Cross

Sunday is going to an awesome day of worship at Gages Lake. We're going to have a baptism and communion service. And our text in the Gospel of John fits so perfectly with communion. My sermon is "Return to the Cross."   Here is a little snippet of the sermon:    As a Christian, we return to the cross, because that is where life makes sense again. Nothing God asks us to do makes sense without the cross:   He asks us to take up our cross, because He took up His. Its only our reasonable service. He asks us to forgive our deepest hurts, only because He forgave us our most heinous sins. While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. He asks us to deny ourselves, because He denied Himself, his rights and went to the cross. He asks us to...

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9/11 – 8 Years Later

 For my generation—I’m 31 years old—9/11 was as seminal moment. I still remember that day and following weeks exactly as they happened. I was working on staff at Victory In Grace Ministries. But really “working” is a bad word, because for several days were glued to the TV as the rest of America was.  I still remember the feelings I felt on 9/11. It was as if a giant protective bubble over America had burst and now were like everyone else on the planet: vulnerable, scared, angry. We had thought that two oceans could protect us and that we could wash our hands of the news overseas. But we couldn’t and we can’t. I watched those towers fall, I couldn’t get enough of the story. But I also remember a lot of good that came out this monumental tragedy. First, there was the unity. It wasn’t a fake unity, but something real, something human....

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