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Oakhaven Church's Podcast

Gary Cleveland

This podcast features sermons presented at Oakhaven Church in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. These messages are offered as a resource for spiritual instruction and encouragement.



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Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Sep 23, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Aug 28, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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We've all had our try at responding to criticism. It seems no matter what choices we make, there is someone waiting to criticize and judge. That's not to say than any of us are above criticism or that there is no benefit to listening and discerning when it comes our way. The cold truth is that much that is offered even as helpful criticism is just a veiled attempt to frustrate and discourage. The passage we will be discussing is in Luke 7 where the antagonists accuse Jesus of being a glutton...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
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This podcast is the result of a collaborative effort between Gary and his son Matthew. Matt is an elementary school art teacher in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin. Over the past few years has created a series of "Jesus" drawings at youth rallys and special services. He begins with a blank canvas and sketches as I preach a sermon based in the Gospel of John and select passages from 1 John. I encourage the listener to consider who their personal view/understanding of the Savior becomes more...
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Jesus has compassion, reaches out and touches a leper and with that action demonstrates the gospel in microcosm. We find here Grace, Inclusion and a foreshadowing of substitutionary atonement. Listen in as Gary and son, Nate have a conversation about one of the great things Jesus did. Explore with us the wonder of the Savior.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Aug 5, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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Listen in today as Wayne Hawley shares thoughts about the nature of the church as an encouraging enterprise. Each member contributes in ways he or she probably does not fully appreciate. You will be encouraged and inspired by listening in.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Aug 5, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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It is easy to lose sight of what is most important. A thousand and one things scream to get done. Jesus must have experienced this more than most. Listen in today as we explore the texts found in Luke 4: 40-44, and Mark 1: 35-39.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Jul 9, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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Does the church have a mission? OR Does God have a mission and the church plays a role in the carrying out of that mission? Admittedly, this question could get bogged down in semantics, but I think there is something worth considering. The church follows closely the style of Jesus in responding to needs and crises. There is no doubt that Jesus had a strategic plan and the early church had goals and purposes. But time after time, Scripture shows that the church, like Jesus, was a response...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Jul 9, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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Many of the activities of Jesus are centered around miraculous works. No doubt, the miracles of Jesus loom large in the acts of mercy he administers during his earthly ministry. This series will focus on some of what might be referred to as ordinary, even though extraordinary.....things Jesus did. Today we look at the last few verses of the Gospel of John where Jesus asks Peter if he loves him. 3 times the question is asked. Jesus affirms Peter and sets the stage for the early period of the...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
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We wrap up our series on Prayer "As A Manner of Speaking" today. We finish with a conversation between Job and God. This being the occasion of Fathers' Day, we make application in particular to fathers and how we demonstrate trust in God in how we face tough circumstances.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Jun 23, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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Jesus specialized in responding to a crisis. From his first miracle in Cana of Galilee, he calmly handles crisis after crisis in his ministry. Miracles are often a part of the story. No matter what the circumstance, Jesus draws others into the story. On each occasion there is frequently found these three: Prayer, Planning and Participation. In today's story of the feeding of the 5,000, we find Jesus at work responding to a crisis. Listen in as Josh Cleveland and Gary Cleveland have a...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Jun 11, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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Prayer is often situational by nature. There are times when prayer is a crying out.....perhaps not even in words or phrases, but a groan. Sometimes prayer is a sustained plea for healing, or hope or direction. The prayer of David in 2 Samuel 7 is a prayer of looking back at what God has done, a current look at what God is in the process of doing and a look forward at all He will do in the future. Today's lesson is coupled with a time of honoring a couple of recent graduates and an exhortation...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Jun 3, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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The prayer of Hannah is rich in theological content and illustrates the highest respect for God and his ways. If this prayer sounds familiar, it might be because of the close parallels it has with Mary's Magnificat in Luke 1:46 and following. The prayer is also given in the form of song or poetry. It is a well constructed, highly contemplative prayer. In this sermon, we will explore the idea of prayer being a part of action and willingness to participate in the agenda of God. It is my prayer...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
May 28, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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Join in today as we explore the idea of living in the Hope of God. Listen as Don Truitt, one of the founding ministers of Oakhaven, shares from God's Word. You will be blessed, encouraged and exhorted to live for God in fresh creative and thoughtful ways.
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Today's podcast is a mission report by two of our Oakhaven family who recently did mission work in Cancun, Mexico at an orphanage. Listen in as Kathy Rabitoy and Emily Crowe share their story. You will be inspired and encouraged by the work God is doing in the lives of those who will answer the call as did Emily and Kathy.
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We continue to explore prayer as a "manner of speaking". Today's lesson is a prayer voiced by Solomon as the temple of God is being dedicated. Pay careful attention to the language in this prayer. Not only is the temple being dedicated, but the people are to dedicate themselves to the carrying out of God's agenda.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
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Bella Medical Clinic provides care for pregnant women who are seeking options which recognize the sanctity of life and reflect the heart of God. This message is a brief overview of this ministry.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
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This is a most unlikely text for a Mother's Day sermon. Blushingly, I would admit that this is one of the more hair-brained ideas for a sermon I've ever tried to pull off. You can't blame me for trying the near impossible.....well....maybe you can. Nehemiah offers a prayer to God asking for guidance in rebuilding the wall of Jerusalem. At this time, Israel is released following the period when Babylon destroyed the city and took many of Jerusalem's residents captive. The re-building of the wall...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Apr 30, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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This is the first in a series of interviews by Gary of Oakhaven members. The series is called This is My Story, This is My Song. It is an opportunity for the Oakhaven family to hear personal statements from individuals about their faith and their growth in Christ. In addition to sharing of their story, each person is asked to share a song that has been especially meaningful to them in their walk with God. The Bible is a collection of stories about individuals who were willing to let God's story...
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This week we have experienced great tragedies in our country in Boston and the little town of West, Texas. In times like this we grasp for peace in the midst of suffering and loss. The promise of peace seems like a far reach. In fact, it might be out of reach for a time among those whose losses were so personal. In spite of the great pain and hurt, we yearn for comfort. In this passage in Numbers 6 we find God giving a blessing to his people as they leave Sinai for the promised land. The...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Apr 19, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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There is so much drama in 1 Kings 18. Elijah is called upon to give testimony to the greatness of God. More specifically, he is to bring about a show down between the servants of Baal and the God of Israel. The event is filled with drama and a spectacular display of God's power. The prayer of Elijah is in contrast, very short and to the point especially when compared to the sideshow demonstrated by the Baal worshipers. If you haven't read this narrative in a while, I invite you to revisit the...
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We continue our series titled, "In a Manner of Speaking" today. We are exploring the ways we speak to God and how God hears us. The most common way we tend to identify as our communication to God, is prayer. We are reminded in today's lesson that God hears everything we communicate for better or worse. In today's text, we revisit the time of Israel after having been set free from Egyptian captivity. It didn't take long for Israel to forget all the wonder of God witnessed in the...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Apr 2, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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On the occasion of resurrection Sunday or Easter, if you will, we explore the words of the Apostle John as he tells in his gospel of the things leading up to and including the resurrection. Listen in as Wayne Hawley shares the progression of John's ideas as told in the 4th gospel. You will be invited to revisit these familiar scenes and encouraged to celebrate anew the glory of the resurrection.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Mar 25, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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Today's lesson by Pat Crowe uses the text in Acts 6 which highlights the heart of ministry which is conditional on the heart of the servant. Pat speaks from the text, from his heart and his life. Listen along and you will be blessed.
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This is perhaps as intimate a podcast as I have ever published. Prior to the sermon you will hear me speak of my ongoing battle with cancer. This past week Deb and I got the news that the Melanoma Cancer has spread to my liver and is inoperable. We will be going back to Mayo Clinic this week to find out what the treatment options are. I appreciate all those who are praying for Deb and me. We could not ask for more comfort, confidence and companionship than you have all provided us. The sermon...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Mar 17, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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As we continue our exploration of prayer we discover that prayer doesn't require great formality nor even coherent language. God can even hear the desperate crying out for help and rescue. Perhaps the idea of praying continually is all about sensing a constant connection with God and an awareness of His abiding presence and His great and benevolent power. Join in our journey along the path to a more effectual and satisfying prayer life.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Mar 17, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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We begin a series on the subject of prayer in this podcast. Prayer in its most simple of descriptions is a calling upon the name of the Lord. Listen in today as we consider a simple approach to the grandest communication of all - Prayer.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Jan 28, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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God is always speaking. Sometimes we can't hear him for the noise that bombards us from every corridor of our lives. In this series we are exploring how we can "tune in" better to what God is saying. Today we are examining a passage in Hebrews 1: 1-3. The writer of Hebrews emphasizes that God speaks to us today through Jesus, His son. The question we explore today regards how easy it is to use only the "sound clips" of Jesus which are most comfortable and edit the commands...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Jan 14, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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John the baptist is arguably one of the most intriguing of the New Testament characters. Beginning with his birth announcement and his father's instructions about how John was to live, we observe that John is not your everyday, run of the day, Jewish boy. He has a mission, he has a call. He hears the voice of God. May we learn from John how to hear with more clarity, the voice of God. May the hearing of the voice of God give us clearer purpose, mission and meaning in our lives.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Jan 11, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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We begin a new series in this podcast on "Hearing the Voice of God". As our new year begins, we can be assured that various things will call for our attention. The question begging to be asked is: How will I be able to hear the voice of God above all the clamor and noisiness of everyday life? In the next few weeks, we will be attempting to address this vital question. May God grant us ears to hear His voice.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Jan 2, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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Embedded in the early going of Luke's gospel is a rare statement about Jesus as a boy. It says simply, "Jesus grew in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and Man." May each of us plan, purpose and pray for God to help us grow in all facets of our lives in this new year. May God's will be done in our lives on earth as it is in heaven.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Jan 2, 2013 Gary Cleveland
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The birth stories in the gospels are filled with wondrous words and happenings. Join us in revisiting those special moments surrounding the birth of Jesus.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Dec 12, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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Jesus appeared in the flesh to bring God within reach. The birth of Jesus celebrated at this time of year prompts us to ask what it should mean and what difference should this make in our lives. Jesus came to bring God near. He came to show us how God would live as a human. Jesus demonstrates what happens when a person is wise about how to live. This lesson strings together thematically the idea of Jesus and wisdom. You are invited to join in on the process. May Jesus become more real and his...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Nov 26, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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What would it be like to live in a perfect world? What if we treated one another with respect, even if we had differences of opinion? What if our churches could model behavior that the rest of the world could observe and which would bring about opportunities to share the message of Christ? Lets explore this together and urge one another to live lives of influence.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Oct 29, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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If God dwells in us and we are His Temple, so what? How does the idea of the indwelling of God through his Holy Spirit have any practical value? To wrestle with this question is to long to know what God intended when he purposed to have us be His temple. We invite you to listen in and deepen your understanding of the Holy Spirit and His part in our lives.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Oct 29, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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In today's lesson we explore the idea of God telling His story in the lives of those we read about in the Bible. We read those stories and are reminded that we are the stories God is writing today. Consider with us, the power of story which affects us at the deepest of levels. Where do you find yourself in the story of God? Listen along as Wayne Hawley, one of Oakhaven's shepherds, shares with us these simple, yet profound thoughts on how God connects with each one of us.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
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All it takes is a reading of 1 Corinthians 14 verse 1 to point out a spiritual lacking in my life. Paul encourages the Corinthian church to "eagerly desire spiritual gifts". This seems odd when one considers the obvious abuses the Corinthian congregation had in regard to "self elevation" and particularly the boasting regarding who had the greater gifts etc. Join me in looking at this passage as we continue to consider the work of God's Holy Spirit in our lives. I believe...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Oct 8, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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Perhaps it would be good to take fresh look at 1 Corinthians 13. Is this a chapter about love? Yes. Is it more? Yes. There is a message Paul intends which over-reaches the theme of love. There is something about the Holy Spirit and His role in our life which needs to be examined and defined with a little more clarity. Join in as we explore this familiar passage.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Oct 3, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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As we continue in our study of the Holy Spirit, we consider today the passage in 1 Corinthians 12. Paul is instructing the Corinthian congregation not to be ignorant about spiritual gifts. Misinformation and misunderstanding about the work of the Holy Spirit plays a major role in the unhealthy attitudes in the Corinthian church. Listen along as we explore this aspect of the Holy Spirit's work.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Sep 12, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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John 16 offers many insights to our quest to understand more of the Holy Spirit's work. Listen along with us.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Aug 13, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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Jacob's story is one that presents the critical thinker with a conundrum. Why does God bless his people through a man who cheats, is dishonest and cowardly? Jacob wrestled with God but I find myself wrestling with why God allowed Jacob to become such a major player in the story of redemption. Explore this story with us as we ponder these events in today's podcast.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Aug 1, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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Even though we see more vivid occurrences in the New Testament, the Holy Spirit is just as active and present in the Old Testament. Explore with us some of the passages of interest and consider their implications in this part 2 of a series on the Holy Spirit in the Old Testament.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Aug 1, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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When the Holy Spirit interacts with people, there is change in the air. The "wind" or "pneuma" & "ruach" is the force of the Trinity acting upon History in powerful and sometimes unexpected ways. Explore with us the ways our lives are affected when we respond to the Spirit's call to change.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Jul 9, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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The Holy Spirit is present in both the Old and New Testament. At the coming of Christ the Holy Spirit is seen in astounding and dramatic ways. Not only do the manifestations of the Spirit become more frequent and varied, the manifestations become increasingly personal. Today's lesson features a sampling of some Old Testament characters and how the Spirit is manifested in their lives and concludes with a challenge for all of us to embrace the Spirit's call to purpose and action.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Jul 2, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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The Holy Spirit has a tendency to be marginalized and minimized in much of mainstream Christianity. While we speak often of God, the Father and the Son, we less often reflect on the third personality in the Trinity, the Holy Spirit. A careful reading of Scripture in both the Old and New Testaments, offers plentiful glimpses into the work and function of the Holy Spirit. In this series of lessons we will seek to sharpen our focus on the Holy Spirit through a thoughtful and reflective examination...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Jun 27, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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This podcast is the final of 3 lessons presented on the subject. The other 2 did not get recorded due to some technical difficulties. Trust me, you didn't miss any great revelation on end times. For generations there have been those who insisted that they had discovered evidence on when the Lord would come again. (Too bad they didn't take his word on it.) 2012 has once again brought this theme to the forefront. In this lesson, we explore some ideas about why it is actually good for us to think...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
May 29, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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In this final installment of the lessons on Ruth, we explore some of the interesting and surprising outcomes of this study. We revisit the unlikely turn of events which allow God's redemptive, restorative work to be done in unexpected ways. Listen along as we reflect on how God continues to write His story of redemption using unlikely heroes and heroines.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
May 23, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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This lesson explores Ruth Chapter 4. The saga of Ruth and Naomi has now fully merged with the life of Boaz. We see in each of these characters, a willingness to think of the needs of others and make informed choices which will bring honor to God. As noted previously, the book of Ruth yields considerable insight into the core features of the gospel as encountered in the New Testament. Listen along and consider the practical and lasting lessons to be learned in this short and all too often,...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
May 14, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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In Chapter 3 of Ruth we encounter the continuing story of Ruth and Naomi. Naomi instructs Ruth to go to the place where Boaz is processing his grain harvest. Naomi's plan is to explore the possibility that Boaz would be agreeable to acting as the kinsman redeemer who would take Ruth as his wife and therefore, give her some long term security. The story narrative exposes us to cultural practices that puzzle and intrigue the modern reader. As we have discovered in previous lessons, we find the...
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
May 7, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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Keeping one's focus is vital. It is so easy to lose sight of what is most important. Christian discipleship is always outward focused. Our lives are to be spent in bringing glory to God and helping others to see this glory. Paul offers some very quick "bullet points" in Colossians 4: 2-7 which remind us of our calling, our purpose and our mission. Join in the exploration of these verses with us by listening in.
Oakhaven Church's Podcast
Apr 23, 2012 Gary Cleveland
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We explore today the first chapter of the book of Ruth. We consider the plight of Naomi, who has relocated to Moab with her family because of a famine in the region of their hometown of Bethlehem. As is frequent with resident aliens, the clan of Naomi is soon faced with additional subsequent tragedies. She loses here husband and her two sons and is left alone with her two Moabite daughter in laws, Ruth and Orpah. In this lesson, we observe the story of Ruth as being a story for all. It is sad,...