What Do You See?
Seeing others the way Jesus sees them.
Damon examines the ways look at one another – ways that are often degrading, and even dehumanizing. People become things to us, rather than men and women created in the image of God. Damon takes the audience on a journey through John chapter nine, looking at the conversations and interactions with the man born blind. We see him as the people saw him, and then we see him the way Jesus says we should see him.
We / Me
Personalizing my standing with Christ.
We / Me is an exploration of the group-phenomenon Christian experience pitted against the acute singularity of the atonement each of us needs from Jesus. Through study of the parable of the Pharisee and the Publican, the audience is challenged to move from the group mentality that says, “God, we have sinned. Forgive us,” to saying “God I have sinned. Forgive me.” – from “Please save us, Lord.” to “Lord, please save me.”
Coloring Inside the Lines
Following a system of rules will never suffice for us. That's why we have grace!
Damon takes an in-depth look at the parable of the Good Samaritan, and does so veering away from common themes drawn from this well-known parable. Drawing on the cultural background, the Law, and the traditions, Damon is able to shed light on the parable for life-changing perspectives that are challenging, fascinating, and easy to miss without the background.
Failure is Not Fatal
What to do when I fall flat on my face.
In an achievement-driven society that defines “success” in exceedingly materialistic ways, the tendency is to evaluate our walk with Christ using a similar measuring stick. Damon rejects the worldly definitional baseline, and demonstrates from Jesus’ own words how success for a Christ-follower is found in how we handle inevitable moral and ethical failure.
Aligning Our Loyalties
How do I conduct myself with an absentee master?
Damon draws on the Parable of the Pounds to examine how Christ-followers behave when the Master is not looking. In this parable from Jesus, the nobleman assigned his servants a very specific task, and then went away. Like them, how do we conduct ourselves in the Master’s absence?
God invites us to share in his banquet. (This has a more evangelistic tone.)
In the parable of the Great Banquet we are told how a meal is prepared, and once ready, the invited guests are called to attend. At that point we hear the stream of absurd reasons (excuses) offered for not being able to attend the banquet. By extension, Jesus has invited us to his banquet table, and he “compels” us to join him there.
For Honor of His Name
In hearing and responding to our prayers, God never dishonors His own name.
In this discourse, the audience walks through Jesus’ parable of the Friend at Midnight, a story from Jesus that is often read as little more than an encouragement to be persistent in prayer. Damon approaches the story from the angle of honor, demonstrating for the audience how Jesus wants us to understand that God hears and answers our prayers because his holy honor demands that he do so.
Crying For Justice
God will avenge his own quickly. His justice is holy, and complete.
Similar to the previous keynote, this sister presentation looks at the parable of the Unjust Judge, a parable in which a persistent widow pesters a judge into granting her a favorable judgement. Rather than read this as a call from Jesus to petition God endlessly until we get what we want from him, Damon shows how the parable teaches us something quite different – that it is unnecessary to badger God because God is everything this unjust judge is not.