Andrew Burchett

Andrew Burchett

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Embracing Lament

May 26, 2021

Grief has matured me.

I have been in full-time ministry for 29 years and if you asked me what has caused me to grow the most, you might be surprised.  Certainly, in the midst of my own failings, struggles, heartaches and pain, I have been shaped by God into the man I am today.  However, I have grown most by walking through pain with others.  As a pastor, I have walked with hundreds of families through grief as they struggled with the death of loved ones.  Instead of trying to live in an “emotionally neutral” heart posture in self-protection, I have decided to weep with those who weep and enter into their lament.  Every circumstance is different, but the result has been the same – I come out of that experience more thankful and richer.  My soul has become enriched by hearing the stories of others, my compassion has grown deeper, and my resolve to live life with Jesus, stronger. 

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More Than Grief

May 20, 2021

A few years ago, one of the young men of our church died at a young age.  I was stunned and so shocked that I didn’t weep for days until I made the trip to visit his parents.  Upon seeing the crushed look in his father’s eyes, I hugged him, and the tears began to flow.  The mourning, weeping, questions, shock and overwhelming grief were almost too much to bear.  As we sat together for hours and wept, there was a corporate expression of lament – messy, unrefined, littered with words you don’t say in front of your mother that was all punctuated with ill-timed comments, jokes, laughter and silence. 

In these days, I believe Christians have not been taught the power and biblical value of lament.  Our culture doesn't promote grieving or showing emotion connected to pain.

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Watching Jesus

April 28, 2021

Interacting with the Word of God in a creative way moves my heart.

Not long ago, I was talking with a family friend, Mark Viniello, about his work on the movie, “The Passion of the Christ.” As a creative mind in all things in special effects, Vinny has created Hobbit feet for the Lord of the Rings and the masks of creatures in the last season of the Mandalorian. Mark explained that in order to make the scene in the Passion where Jesus is whipped, they superimposed a shot of Mark’s back being whipped instead of Jim Caviezel’s.  

My family teases me about my love of "Jesus movies".

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The Creative Nature Of God

April 7, 2021

Art reflects the creative nature of God.

This past Sunday we debuted an art show in the Dome lobby.  We are passionate about the arts because we believe that they reflect the creative nature of our God.  The Bible tells us that we are each given gifts to build up the body of the church.  The visual arts, photography, sculpture, dance, music and so many other forms of expression are inspired by God and can lead us to worship Him.   


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What Do We Do With Our Pain?

April 1, 2021

Coping with our suffering can be hazardous!

Walking through this human life will expose you to betrayal and hurt.  Our hearts ache from the hurtful actions of others and the pain of our own selfish choices.  Most of us have suffered at the hands of another person in one way or another… but what will we do with that pain?   

The world's way to deal with pain includes “more...” 

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March 24, 2021

“Jealousy is an inner consciousness of one’s own inferiority.  It is a mental cancer.”
 - B.C. Forbes

As we are walking through 1 Samuel together on Sunday mornings, King Saul is showing us  how destructive jealousy can be.  David, the part-time palace musician, has been thrust into the limelight of fame by the people of Israel after defeating Goliath.  As David’s fame becomes the stuff of legend and song, the chorus of the most popular song of the day compares Saul’s success with that of David’s.  When he hears, “Saul has slain his thousands, and David tens of thousands” over and over, it infuriates King Saul.  A jealousy is growing in Saul like a “slow burn” of anger inside his heart. 

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Lessons From St. Patrick

March 16, 2021

The man that we call St. Patrick returned to Ireland to begin his mission to establish the church of Jesus Christ in 432 AD.  He was returning to the hostile land that kept him as a slave for six years of his youth.  When he writes his confession near the end of his life, Patrick speaks of the constant dangers and threats to his life he had to endure. Though Ireland was a barbarian land, this man planted churches and trained hundreds of priests to establish the Church.  His leadership was extraordinary and there are many leadership lessons we could glean from what we know about him. 

To celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, I submit to you my list of seven leadership lessons from this 5th century leader.    

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Living With Boldness

March 10, 2021

Faith makes us bold.

As David runs toward Goliath with his sling swinging over his head (1 Samuel 17) he declares that “the Battle belongs to the Lord.” In faith, a teenager armed with only a shepherd’s staff and five smooth stones is running toward a nine-foot-tall killing machine covered with over 150 pounds of armor. The odds aren’t in David’s favor of surviving this encounter – but he is not depending upon his own skills; he is fully trusting his life to the care of Yahweh, the God who gives us life.

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Excuses Or Obedience

February 24, 2021

“He that is good for making excuses is seldom good for anything else.”    -Benjamin Franklin

As we have been learning the lessons from the life of King Saul, we have seen that Saul is really good at making excuses instead of obeying the Lord. As we've studied 1 Samuel 13 and 14, we have seen that Saul is driving on the “Excuse Expressway,” and in this week’s chapter he proves that he has no intention of taking an “exit ramp.”

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A Beautiful Season

February 18, 2021

Preparing for Victory.

When you run a race, it’s common to have a big meal to “carb-load” the night before. People will often eat pasta and make sure their body has plenty of fuel for all the energy they are about to burn.

Last Sunday we learned about King Saul doing the opposite with his army. (1 Samuel 14) He foolishly forced his six hundred men to take an oath to eat nothing prior to and during the battle with the Philistines.
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