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First Presbyterian Church in Jamaica, NY
37 minutes | Jan 6, 2021
"What would you do with a second chance?"
Rev. O'Connor -Have you ever found that there is a time in your life when sometimes you feel as if you’re too busy to see what’s happening to you?Have you ever found that there are times in your life that you spend a lot of time looking at what everybody else is doing instead of seeing where you are in your life?For every single one of us, there is a moment of accountability in our lives. It’s not about what the other human being thinks about you or thinks should happen in your life. There is a time for every one of us when we stand before God and God will ask, “Are you ready?”We serve a God who gives second chances. In fact, more than second chances!When you wake up and get a second chance, it is an opportunity to be able to stop and pause and say, “Lord I thank you!”“I thank you that I am alive”“I thank you that in the midst of all that is happening in my life and in the world, I have the opportunity to participate and to share in what life has to offer.”“God I could have died, but I am still here and I thank you for a second chance.”Remember to lift your hands and say, “God I thank you, I thank you, I thank you, and I thank you that I have a second chance.”Second chances are precious blessings because through them, God reminds us that we live on a grace-filled journey which is a journey filled with God's favor, goodness, and mercy.--Second chances also are a time for us to reset.God is saying to all of us right now, “Reset and reimagine your life” because He has bigger plans and purposes for each and every one of us.Somebody might be saying “God I regret what I have done and I feel like I cannot recover.”But God gives strength to those who are weakHowever, when some people are given second chances they squander them. We don’t realize that the second opportunity is to get you out of yourself so that you can be able to execute and to be able to do what God is calling you to do so that you can take life by the horns and make most of what the possibilities are.So what would you do with a second chance?
35 minutes | Dec 29, 2020
“Make the statement, be the statement”
Rev. Patrick O'Connor - With God all things are possible or with God nothing is impossible. As you prepare for Christmas, God is proposing something to you, something that He wants of you and for you. Something that He wants you to be open to because if you are open to it blessings shall come your way. But how open are YOU to God's proposition?How supportive, present, and real are you when somebody is dealing with something that’s overwhelming and challenging? Are you the kind of person who says “I am here you can trust me, I will help to interpret what’s happening with you?” Have you ever found yourself overwhelmed in 2020? Where you’ve gotten to a point on your journey where the things which are happening are beyond your capacity to deal with or when you’ve hit a wall and you can’t keep going? You are an agent of God. Don't make yourself bigger than God. This is a God moment. As you enter the holiday, somebody is needing something from you. God has uniquely gifted you and God has uniquely given you an experience that you can be relevant to somebody who is going through the same thing! So let me ask you something. How available are you to be God's instrument so that you can see the right thing, in the right moment and in the right season so that you can uplift somebody who is intimidated and fearful? You’re going to say to them, “No matter what, it is going to be OK because God took me through it so He will carry you through it too.” If God takes you through it, it’s not just for you. It is so that you can be real for somebody else. Encouragement is a wonderful thing... when it happens. If you just bring a symbol of Faith, something different would happen in your circumstance(s).
34 minutes | Dec 22, 2020
“Make Room for the Light"
Rev. Patrick O’Connor -Some people want to just jump to Christmas, but Advent is about making room. Making room so that God can do what God can do, and what HE wants to do. If you’re not prepared to be inconvenienced or challenged, then you can’t make room for God. Many people in their Faith life want to simply have the easy way. But Jesus constantly says, “If you’re going to follow me you must take up your cross and walk with me.” If God can’t dissect your schedule, finances, or the way you normally want to function, then there’s no room for God in your life. Look at your schedule and ask yourself, “Is this a God schedule or is it my easy schedule?” Look at how you spend your money and ask yourself, “Is this a God budget or is this my budget?” Look at your relationships, who you’re connecting with, and what you do with your connections and ask yourself, “Am I connecting with God, Gods’ will, and Gods’ purpose or is this just what I want? People who excel in making room for God realize that you have to be intentional about it. Are you proud of how you’re doing, what’s happening in your life, what you’re connecting, and how you’re impacting and multiplying on your journey? Leave this world where you’ve done your absolute best and God will be pleased with you because YOU made a difference. As hard as 2020 is, there’s some hard stuff coming in 2021. But if you’re gonna get ready for 2021 you have to be able to say, “My hope is built on nothing than Jesus’ blood and righteousness. I dare not trust my sweetest frame but holy lean on Jesus name on Christ the solid rock.” If you’re going to excel in the year that’s going to come, you have to have the foundation of a strong relationship with Jesus Christ.
37 minutes | Dec 15, 2020
"God’s Way Not Your Way"
Rev. Patrick O’Connor -The year 2020 has been an earthquake year. It has been a year in which our world has been shaken. Can you reflect on your journey this year and think about all the things that have happened in your life that have shaken you and your sense of who you are and what you think the world should be? For a lot of people when their world shakes and there are crises that happen and occur a number of things happen to us. It affects our mental state in a number of ways and some of us are filled with uncertainty. There are a lot of people that walk around not knowing how exactly things are going to play out. Fear, anxiety, and dread get in our way, which changes the way we operate. Sometimes you may feel hopeless and/or helpless. Whenever any human being gets themselves in a position in life where they are hopeless, it takes their energy and causes them to fail. You start to personalize it and think since nothing can be done there’s absolutely nothing you can do.God says some things cannot be fixed on your own. Yes, you should show up and yes, you should engage, but sometimes you just need the hand of God to part the waters and to say here is a way. God says, “No matter how hard it is those who are hopeful can have the victory.” God is about making the crooked things straight. What’s crooked in your life? Stop and think “what’s crooked in my life"? Until we take ownership of the things that we are wrestling with, God cannot come and do the mighty work that he needs to do. God's not only making the crooked places straight but the rough places smooth. Get to where God wants you and He will change you for the better.
23 minutes | Dec 8, 2020
Rev Marquis’ - Happy New Year! Advent is here.Our calendar is reset for us Christians. This is the season of expected waiting and preparation.In the midst of Covid, we have to be amped up!How is that possible you ask? Because hope has awakened.It’s a wonderful thing to have some time with Christ. Unfortunately too many Christians stop dreaming. Some of us think that what is, shall always be But don’t give up hope You are an important aspect of the plan of God. You are not an afterthought, you are part of God's intention on you.This is good news for young people because God has always used young people to change the world and that’s a great place to be. You see, we live in an uncertain moment, we live in times where we want to change an unjust justice system, but it has to take young men and women to bring about change. Our voices are important and God uses us in a mighty way. So stay awake, keep awake, and be alert because God is about to do something magnificent in your life.
34 minutes | Nov 30, 2020
“Celebrating God’s Victory”
Rev. Patrick O’Connor - When you examine your life you see how God's hand is at work. When the Lord is on your side He makes a way when there seems to be no way. Sometimes things happen to us and we think it’s because of our own ingenuity and our own brilliance. Sometimes we think we have done it all, but if it wasn’t for God's goodness, kindness, love, and mercy where would you be? Worship is an opportunity for every single one of us to remember how gracious and how good God is to us.Have you ever thought about all the things that could have gone wrong? God orchestrates all of life to work for those who love Him and those who are called according to His purpose. Say, “Thank you Lord for your victory, power, goodness, love, and grace. I am thankful for all that you have done and are doing and continue to do in my life.” When God is at work in the lives of human beings, we face adversities, calamities and we face things that should cause us to break apart and crumble, but because God is standing with us we can do all things through Christ who gives us strength. If God is for you who can be against you? What God is doing and what He is about to do is bless you, because He blesses those who rely on Him.
32 minutes | Nov 25, 2020
Rev. Patrick O’Connor - There are people or forces in the world that are trying to capture us and once you’re captured it’s hard to be released.How many people are captured by alcohol? How many people are captured by television? How many people are captured by a mindset which says bow down to me and do whatever I want of you?Those who have faith... Faith doesn’t protect you from peril, harm, or challengesCommit yourself to something Even when something is challenging don’t give up! No matter what the circumstances are, stand with GodThose who see a transformation in their journey have to have a foundation Stand with God and walk with God Ask God to give you the right attitude Walk with kindness, goodness, and positivity Your attitude is more important than your altitude If God be with you He will take you through the fire, the desert, the storm, the challenge, the difficulty, and whatever life brings to you, because God never leaves or forsakes those He loves
29 minutes | Nov 16, 2020
“Enter into worship and prayer; the power of being in God‘s presence.”
Rev. Patrick O’Connor - We are in a season of our lives where we get a chance to start again.We have to have an awareness of what it means to be in God‘s presence.When you are in God’s presence, you are entirely aware of who God is.Worship is not about you or me, it is a focus upon the living God. Anywhere you see God realize that the whole encounter is about connecting with Him.We serve a God who is the omnipotent God, who is all-powerful, and the God who has the ability to get things done.When you see God, what kind of God are you seeing? Are you seeing a God who is limited or are you seeing a God who is omnipotent and powerful?Sometimes you may feel as if God isn’t there or that God has forgotten about you, but God is always present.Our God sees and God knows EVERYTHING about everything.Say Lord I want to be able to see you because when I see you I realize that you are a mighty God!God is still in control!There may be things that you are trying to solve and you can’t solve it, but when God takes care of it, it is doneHe signs, seals, and delivers it because He is the omnipotent God and He WILL take care of you so trust in Him
27 minutes | Nov 9, 2020
“Stay connected: Finding and Partnering with Likeminded Warriors”
Rev. Patrick O'Connor - God is in controlAnything good is worth fighting for Whenever God gives us a vision, associated with that vision comes tensionHave you ever set out to do something in your life, you get to the halfway mark, but there are all kinds of tension and difficultyIf God has something in store for any one of us, when we put our minds and our hearts to it, God makes it possibleIf you want a better life for yourself, do the work because nothing can stop the power of a committed and determined person to make a difference in our society Each one of us in our generation must do our partDo you have a mind to work?Work takes passion, effort, imagination, and creativity, but if you go at it and give it your honest labor, you will see results Whatever we are going through we have to invoke the name of God and the presence of GodOur God is always working and on the throneHe breaks through barriers because our God is a God who is real and alive God has the last wordIf God gives you a vision remember to ask and it shall be given to you Seek and ye shall find, Knock and the door shall be opened onto you
26 minutes | Nov 2, 2020
“Develop Inspired Speech & Actions”
Rev Marquis’ - Words matter Words are important Jesus is the word made in the flesh Words are powerful Sometimes the devil has a way of using you Gods word is used to create strengthen and encourage But the devil wants to hold you back He doesn’t want you to believe that he exists because when he starts acting out he doesn’t want you to know he exists But the reason why he’s attacking you is that he knows HIS end is coming You are filled with Gods Holy Spirit and that’s why the devil is on your tailBut you are an overcomer in this battle called life The enemy does not give up on you He waits for an opportunity to attack and stir some stuff up But you and I have to exercise the power to our spiritual muscle because we are in a battle Utilize your tools and plead the blood of Jesus over your life Do what God had called you and me to do and that is to defeat the devil Speak with authority and utilize that power and say devil get out my way!Plead the blood of Jesus because you are a walking testimony Each of us has a story so stop and think how great God has been to you and proclaim that word!
37 minutes | Oct 26, 2020
“Guard Your Mind And Your Heart”
Rev. Patrick O'Connor -God gives us the shield of faith The shield of faith comes to us at times in our journey to make sure wherever the attack is coming from, we can maneuver and block it Every single one of us is under attack If you can be taken out of balance, you usually end up doing something which is out of character Some of us are under attack in such a great way that we are never able to gain momentum Every human being is vulnerable to an attackOne of the many gifts that God gives to us is the ability to discern So you should ask yourself What are my weak spots? What are some of the pathways that evil can come to me and turn me upside down Or what are some of the ways the devil can cause me to act out of character? Every single human being should spend some time knowing themselves. Take a minute to look at your vulnerability spots When you’re facing an attack, sometimes the attack is from the outside Things in your life just start to crumble and come at you in ways that you could never imagine On your journey, people will offer their words and opinions, but none of it can hurt you unless you let it enter your heart and your mind What I say and what I do and what you say and what you do, reveals the content of your heartIf you’re good at saying bad things about other people, it’s a reflection of your heart and what’s at the core of youIf you’re not careful and I’m not careful, we become as evil as those who spew out disharmony and hatred Say, God, Create in me a clean heart If you guard what is important to you, something powerful will happen to youYou are valuable, special, and important to God so don’t let the preciousness of your life go to waste
36 minutes | Oct 19, 2020
“How do I fight to be whole and healthy in a time of stress, fear and anxiety?”
When was the last time you went for a checkup?Many of us as we seek to be well during this time of difficulty, we have to go to Dr. JesusHe looks upon us and ask us the question, “Are you well this morning?”It’s possible for all of us to dress to impress and put ourselves together to appear as if we are whole and well.But below the surface, there’s all these fears and anxieties which are causing us to act in ways which are out of character with who we are and what God has for usOne of the things that God requires from all of us is for us to be really honest and to ask ourselves, “Are you well this morning?”Ask yourself, “Whats driving your anxiety and fear?”Sometimes our fear and our anxiety are driven by things that happened a long time agoIt could have been one month ago, one year ago, years ago or maybe even yesterday.Sometimes yesterday’s choice prevent you from being well todayGod is speaking to us in the midst of this difficult journeyWhen we go to God for our checkup we have to recognize the fact that there are some parts in our life that are not wellBe in harmony and alignment with the will and the purpose of GodLook on your life and ask yourself are you lining up with what God wantsWhen it’s lined up with what God wants He will use it and bless you to take you somewhere differentGod had something better for youThe word of God says fill your minds with the power and presence of what God wants you to have
32 minutes | Oct 12, 2020
“Vulnerable in a time of stress, fear and anxiety”
Rev. Patrick O’Connor - If you journey with God and allow Him to work in your life, it will be transformative But have you ever had a time in your journey, where despite your achievements and accomplishments, you are just at a point where you feel like you’re just making it Sometimes we feel like saying to God “I can’t do this anymore”But there’s a battle for your life and your well-being If the devil can conquer and discourage you he willOne of the fundamental ways that the devil attacks Gods children is by attacking our identity He looks for when we’re overwhelmed or things are not going well and he says “If God loves and cares for you, this would not be happening”When the devil attacks our identity and who we are, we have to be able to have the word of God and the truth of God to proclaim what God says about us In the face of the attacks say “I am a child of the living God!” My identity and your identity begins and ends with our relationship with God In this time of vulnerability, you have to get to the scriptures and remember that God loves you and that His love is ALWAYS with you. You’re not just anybody you’re a child of the living God so don’t let the enemy fill you with doubt Believe that God is doing a new thing He is moving in different ways and that God is inviting some of us to take a detour but you have to be willing to be obedient to GodThere are some realities your have in life but the realities don’t negate the truth of God Sometimes you may feel like you’re walking in darkness but darkness doesn’t negate the truth that the lord is our light and our salvation Sometimes you get tired of praying or waiting but that’s when you have to hear the truth of GodWhen you go through times of difficulty where it feels like God has forgotten you, remember that God is still not finished with youFocus on God and the word of God because He loves you
29 minutes | Oct 5, 2020
Sermon - Bread and Whine
Rev. MarquisLast week on Rev. Marquis’ sermon the title was, "Bread and Whine".Sometimes in life when we deal with things that are troublesome, we get accustomed to itYou are a recipient of God/s grace and God's many blessings, but sometimes we STILL complain God is always speaking but are you paying attention? When your not paying attention, you’ll miss the word of God and what He is trying to tell youBecause when we complain it blinds the vision and our blessingsWhen God hears our cries for help and sees our pain, He is with usBut you and I have to realize that he is not going to change things around on our timetable or when we want it. He is going to do what and when He wants to do it because He knows what’s best for usGod will fix it but He won’t fix it the way you want So commit yourself to God and trust in his mighty work because if He did it before, he will do it again
33 minutes | Sep 28, 2020
Are you ready for the crossing?
Rev. Patrick O'ConnorGod always has a plan, but have you ever found yourself between a rock and a hard place? Sometimes it’s difficult to see any way outIf you’ve been bruised or hurt for a long while you can get addicted to the very things which are not good for youBefore we can cross over or get to where God wants us to go, many of us have to bury things that we’re carrying with us We have to have a bigger vision of who we are, where we are, and what can be possible rather than us settling just for a little bitIt’s time for us to say to ourselves “we want better” The challenge for all of us is that if we want to get to the other side we have to bury those thingsThe Lord will fight for you, you only need to be stillIn the midst of the rock and the hard place, you have to hear the word from God because the Lord will fight for youGod will make a way even when it seems to be no way because He works in ways that we cannot seeFocus on God and the path that God has for youYou have to engage with the power of the living God He is a God who will fight your battles and who will create a new destiny for youHe will see us through because God ALWAYS deliversWhen God has a plan, He will execute his planWhen we trust in the power and presence of God he does amazing things in our life Each of us has to make a decision about what do we want to beGod has something bigger and better for youWhen things get off course just remember that God is with you and that God is here to tell you “Don’t walk off or turn your back on the challenge because you are victorious and you will be successful”Choose faith over fear and start walking in your new destiny
35 minutes | Sep 21, 2020
Discovering Power In the Struggle
Rev. Patrick O'ConnorWhat you believe about God will determine how you live your lifeWhat you hear God say to you will determine how you think Sometimes you realize some good things don’t happen easily because with good things comes a struggle You can’t be tired when God has called you to do something of significance in your lifeSometimes we don’t know as human beings how God's plan is going to be fulfilled We focus on the steps and the results of the steps but God is asking us to look on the ultimate vision that he has for us It’s a vision of Freedom All of us in our prayer times and conversations with God have to ask God for a chance to see the bigger picture because if we do see the steps, the steps can discourage usWhen God has a plan and a destiny for us, he will fulfill his destiny If you realize that God has a plan, purpose, and destiny for each of us, it means that you hear God saying you will be more than a conqueror because of His love When God speaks into your life and into your spirit you have to say to the devil “Go behind me and get away from me because I am living my life based upon the promise and presence of God”God has not forgotten you and me Everyone is dealing with a struggle When you’re in the midst of a struggle, hardship, and feeling like you’re going uphill instead of running smoothly- You and I need to hear the word of God say I am with you, I have heard your cry and I have heard your painGod is STILL and will always be the Faithful God that He is Communicate with God and say God I want a real connection with you that can help me in this season of my life The battle is not yours but the Lord'sIf you’re in a struggling place and think God has forgotten about you, ask God to give you a vision A vision of where He wants you to be, to give you a glimpse of what deliverance and victory will look like, and for God to fill you up with hope Because when God shares it with you, you have to declare it, because He has made you MORE than a conqueror
36 minutes | Sep 14, 2020
Sermon: "I Am Ready! But......................."
Sermon by Rev. Patrick O'Connor - Lead Pastor of FPCJ.Summary:Have you ever found yourself on your journey seeing miracles happen in your life and God doing amazing things? But then when you get to the point where you take the next step in your journey, you then say to Him... “God I’m worried about what could happen”Have you been told by God that this is what the next chapter in your life should be, but instead of hearing God, you hear yourself?Sometimes we doubt ourselves or fail to see our full potential even when we know that God is walking with us We ask all the “What if” questions and sike ourselves out of whatever it is we need to do or accomplish But as long as we listen to God and speak God's truth we will be in good hands God's truth has the ability to do what human words can’t do God's word will take you to places where you can’t believe AND will do what only God can doWhen God wants to speak his word to all of us He is able to communicate in a masterful wayHe’s telling us to stop making excuses and just speak the word of GodGod will always equip us when we’re willing to go with HimSomething all of us suffer with is doubt, disbelief, diminishing, discounting, and being dismissive We doubt our gifts and abilities, but also what God can doDon’t discount what God has done on your journey Look back on your life and where you’ve come from, realize how blessed and highly favored you are. Lift your hands up to God each and every day and praise God for his goodness, presence, and provisionEach and every day you should wake up with a vision of you winning because God is in control Whatever you feed your mind with and whatever you focus on affects your performance. If you don’t master your mind your mind will master you and sabotage your purpose, mission, and calling Look on the power of the word of God God is still working through youGod doesn’t call the capable, he makes you capable God doesn’t call the skilled and the competent, He will empower and uplift you He knows what he’s doing in my life and in your life.
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