Soundtrack Part 3 - Dealing With Pride

March 11, 2018

Using the story of Jacob, Pastor Brad Medford teaches us that our pride is one of the biggest things that gets in the way of our being able to hear the Soundtrack of God in our life. 


Soundtrack Part 2 - Overflowing with Gratefulness

March 4, 2018

In this message Pastor Joseph McMurry teaches us that there is something that happens when we realize what we have been given. When someone recommends you for a job or a promotion, when someone appreciates your service and gives you a referral, when you have a need and someone comes through for you. Something happens when we realize what we’ve been given. We become grateful.

Col 4:2 - Devote yourselves to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart.

When we recognize the presence of God in our lives, the response that makes sense is gratitude.


Soundtrack Part 1 - Your Burning Bush

February 25, 2018

Soundtracks have a way of setting a mood… they help us interpret what is going on. They also add color to things. Just like movie soundtracks have a way of setting a mood or taking us back to a moment, being in the presence of God has that same effect.


EPIC Part 7 - The Story You Tell

February 18, 2018

As we wrap up this amazing series on Frredom with God, we look into the life of Jospeh and ask ourselves, "What story do I want to tell?" Because what is true of yesterday doesn't necessarily have to be true of tomorrow.


EPIC Part 6 - Saved to Serve

February 11, 2018

In Mark 10, we are introduced to a blind man, Bartimaeus, doing what he does every day of his life. He is sitting along the roadside begging. Day after day he does the same thing. You have to imagine that after all these years, resignation has set in. Hoplessness. Then, Jesus walks past, calls him over, asks him a simple question and his life is never the same. And in this simple question Jesus reveals his heart for rescue. He is asking that simple question of you today? What is the question? Listen and find out.


EPIC Part 5 - Identity Theft

February 4, 2018

EPIC Part 4 - Captivating

January 28, 2018

Set deep in the heart of every woman are three core desires. 1) To be romanced 2) To play an irreplaceable role and 3) To have a beauty all her own to unveil.

Look at the movies you love and the books you read. Watch little girls at play. You will learn something very important about the feminine soul. These are the desires that shape a woman’s hopes and dreams; they are essential in order to live life as a woman. Most of the time these desires are misplaced, forgotten, or misdirected. But these desires do not simply go away. They go underground and surface later in addiction, control, and shame.

We pay a high price when we neglect the core passions of our God-created hearts.


EPIC Part 3 - Wild at Heart

January 21, 2018

Albert Schweitzer said, “The tragedy of life is what dies inside of a man while he still lives.”

That's too many of our stories. We're alive on the outside and we're dying a little bit more on the inside every single day. What we have to understand is that something has been assaulted. It's been compromised. It's been wounded and it's been surrendered in you. Something is still missing in your life. You were created for something so much more and you know it.


EPIC Part 2 - The Larger Story

January 14, 2018

For most of us, life feels like a movie we've arrived to forty minutes late.

Sure, good things happen. But tragic things happen, too. What does it mean? We find ourselves in the middle of a story that is sometimes wonderful, sometimes awful, but usually a confusing mixture of both. And we haven't a clue how to make sense of it all. No wonder we keep losing heart.

If you walk into any mall, amusement park, or hospital, you will typically run into a very large map with the famous red star and the encouraging words "You are here." These maps help us orient ourselves and provide perspective on things.

This is the Big Picture. This is where you are in that picture. Hopefully you now know where to go. You have your bearings.

Oh, that we had something like this for our lives.

"This is the Story in which you have found yourself. Here is how it got started. Here is where it went wrong. Here is what will happen next. Now this—this is the role you've been given. If you want to fulfill your destiny, this is what you must do. These are your cues. And here is how things are going to turn out in the end.”

We can.

We can discover the Story.

Maybe not perfect clarity. Maybe not in the detail that you would like. But in greater clarity than most of us have now, and that would be worth the price of admission. 

I mean, to have some clarity would be gold right now, wouldn't it?



EPIC Part 1 - The Story of Your Life

January 7, 2018

This message series is about a subject that has changed the lives of a lot of people in our church. But there's more to it than just that. This series is about the foundational pieces of how we help people grow. How we help people move from surviving to thriving. Really, it’s the foundational piece of all that we do as a church.

But there's so much more to it than that. The message in this series is a message that saved Pastor Clay and his wife from a dead life of religion and disappointment. It is a message that helped him renew his relationship with his three children and re-framed his priorities. It was learned in the midst of one of his most desperate times, and it gave hope when honestly, life didn't seem to have much hope left.

The truths in this series introduced Pastor Clay to a relationship with Jesus that, despite the fact that he'd grown up in church and had been a pastor for 15 years, he never dreamed or imagined could be possible.

And it's done the exact same thing for lots of other people around at Next Level Church.

And here's the good news, it has the potential to do the exact same thing for you.


Christmas Eve 2017 - A Random Christmas

December 24, 2017

The ingredients in the Christmas story seem kind of random: a decree from Caesar, an engaged virgin, an angelic announcement, three wise men, and no room at the inn— doesn’t sound like the narrative we’d write if we were God. Some of the circumstances we may be dealing with this year aren’t exactly what we’d write for our own stories either. In this message, we are challenged to respond to the seemingly random curve balls in our lives the same way Mary did to God’s biggest curve ball yet.


THe Light Has Come Part 3 - Who Is Lord?

December 17, 2017

In this message we look beyond the Christmas story to the back story. When Luke goes to write the account of the birth of Jesus, he begins by setting the events in the context of the reign of Caesar Augustus. It's not an accident. Why? What is Luke trying to do? There's a reason why Luke tells us that Jesus' birth occurred during the reign of Caesar Augustus. Luke is contrasting two gospels: the gospel of Caesar (which is not living up to the hype) and the gospel of Jesus.


The Light Has Come Part 2 - Resist or Revere

December 10, 2017

If you at some point in your life, when you were younger, or two years ago, or 20 years ago; if at some point in your life, you prayed a prayer: “Lord Jesus come into my heart or I want to become a Christian or God forgive me of my sin.” And you entered into any kind of relationship with God.
And then as time went by, you just kind of wandered away.

You may have had a bad church experience or your family moved and you just never went back to church or maybe you went to college and you just quit believing. Maybe you just drifted away from your faith. Or there was some tragedy that happened to you and you prayed and prayed and prayed and God didn't answer your prayer.

If any of this is true of you, would you consider coming back to church one more time? If so, we want to invite you to join us this Sunday at Next Level Church. 9:30a or 11:00a

We are a church that, not only understands how you feel, we are a church made up of people just like you. And we want to show you what changed our minds and hearts.


The Light Has Come Part 1 - Piercing the Darkness

December 3, 2017

God cares way more about how open your heart is than whether you follow the rules. When Jesus is born, God's people are going about their business, walking right by, and then there are these foreigners who come. And out of their darkness, they find themselves in this place full of light because there they are with Christ.

And this is really good news for anybody who feels like they are in a dark place because they stepped out of bounds, because they paid attention to the wrong things, because they tried to find their way and it took them in the wrong direction. And now you're in a dark place and you're afraid there is never any light coming for you.

Maybe you're afraid you've ruled yourself out. You've made yourself ineligible for the light. And you just need to hear this, this Christmas season. That God cares way more about whether your heart is open than whether you've followed all the rules. And this is a light that keeps promising to break in.


God Questions Part 2

November 30, 2017

In this series, we formed a panel from our staff to answer questions about faith and God that were submitted to us online. Panel members include: Clay Monkus, Lead Pastor; Joseph McMurry, Teaching and Family Ministries Pastor; Brad Medford, Student Ministries Pastor; Bruce Jones, Discipleship and Groups Pastor; George Estes, Pastoral Care Pastor.

This is part 2 of that discussion, where we answered the following questions:

  • Does God See all sin as equally bad or are there different degrees of sin? Does God see them differently?
  • To spread the word of God do you have to go out and preach the bible? Because, what if I don’t know the Bible that well myself?
  • What has to be done by someone to be saved?
  • Is it possible to be “unsaved” based on our actions?
  • Why is it SO hard to accept Jesus’ Love is truly unconditional?
  • Do prayers change God’s actions?
  • When you have been raped how do you let that go?
  • Where is God now? Where is God when it hurts?

God Questions Part 1

November 26, 2017

In this series, we formed a panel from our staff to answer questions about faith and God that were submitted to us online. Panel members include: Clay Monkus, Lead Pastor; Joseph McMurry, Teaching and Family Ministries Pastor; Brad Medford, Student Ministries Pastor; Bruce Jones, Discipleship and Groups Pastor; George Estes, Pastoral Care Pastor.

This is part 1 of that discussion, where we answered the following questions:

  • If joining a new church should you get saved over again and then baptized again?
  • Is it bad if Churches don’t display a Cross? 
  • I have been saved and baptized but I still wonder, will I make it to Heaven, how do I know?
  • Does Baptism permanently remove all sin from your life?
  • Did God create evil? If so, why?
  • Is our life predestined? Does God know how it will turn out? Can we change the path of our life based on our decisions?
  • Will we be raptured before the tribulation period? 
  • What do you do when you have tried everything and God is still silent?

Sabotage Part 5 - Choosing Wisely

November 19, 2017

“The one who walks with the wise becomes wise, but whoever keeps company with fools only hurts himself." Proverbs 13:20

There is a whole lot that's packed into this one verse. What the writer of Proverbs is talking about is how you'll have a tremendous amount of influence over the people closest to you and those people are going to have a tremendous amount of influence over you.

In other words, your friends will determine the direction and the quality of your life.

Which brings us to a tough question, do you want to become like those you are with?

As you think about your closest friendships, if they're married, do you want your marriage becoming like their marriage? If you're single, and most of your friends are single, do you want your dating life to look like their dating life? Do you want to raise your kids the way they raise their kids? Do you want to handle your money the way they handle their money? Do you want to become like the people that you are with?

And at the end of the day, when you think about your closest friends, you want them to be the kind of people who are going to change you in some profound ways. You want to be surrounded by the kind of people who, just by being who they are, teach you a little bit more about who God really is.


Sabotage Part 4 - Sticks and Stones

November 12, 2017

“The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences.” Proverbs 18:21

Remember Sticks and Stones… Whoever said, “your words will never hurt me”, is a liar. Words are powerful, painful, awful, amazing tools that can help, they can hinder, they can hurt, they can heal.

Your words have the power of life and death. In every single one of your relationships, you're either breathing life into that relationship with your words or you're breathing death into your relationship with your words.

Every word you use has a price tag. With words, wars have been started. With words, murders have been initiated, divorces have been sealed, children’s self esteem has been shattered. Words can end friendships, words splinter families, alright, words shatter reputations, words split churches, words are powerful things.


Sabotage Part 3 - Rejected

November 5, 2017

We’ve all experienced the fear of rejection, maybe more often than we’d like to admit. Maybe it was that girl you wanted to ask out on a date. Maybe it was that group you desperately wanted to be a part of. Maybe ot was that job interview. The potential for rejection comes our way in a million different forms. In sales they could reject your product. In sports you might get cut from the team. In the committee meeting they might reject your presentation. In a relationship they might reject you. 

What are you going to do with the potential for rejection? You can let the fear paralyze you or you can face it. You can cave in or stand up.

The writer of Proverbs says in Proverbs 29:25, "Fearing people is a dangerous trap, but trusting the Lord means safety."

Being criticized is not a problem if you develop a positive way of dealing with it. SO how can we get past the fear of rejection?


Sabotage Part 2 - Conquering Pride

October 29, 2017

Undermining Behavior: A life full of pride.

Pride can and will sabotage almost every single relationship that you're in. In general, pride is at the bottom of most of the relationship mistakes that we make. 

And there's two reasons why pride is so hard to address.

First, pride is unbelievably difficult for us to detect in our own life.  It is very difficult for us to actually see without having some kind of massive “hit rock bottom” type experience.

Second, we live in a culture that, for the most part, sees pride as irritating at worst. But in a lot of cases maybe even a virtue. Maybe it's just part of being a strong, confident, high achiever. 

The problem with that idea in our culture is that the Bible teaches that pride is lethal. That it is toxic, not only in our relationship to God, but it's toxic in our relationships to one another. 

Proverbs 29:1 “Whoever stubbornly refuses to accept criticism will suddenly be destroyed beyond recovery.”

You can win the argument or you can win the other person's heart but you probably won't do both. 

You've got to figure this out in your relationships. What's most important to you? 

Do you want to win the argument? Because you can argue anything as long as you want to argue and eventually you're probably going to come up with enough reasons why you're right.

Or you can win the other person's heart but you're probably not going to win both.