Rob Townshend Sermons

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Christ-Followers Are Forgivers

As humans, we seem to cherish our “right” to exact proper vengeance on those who wrong us. But shouldn’t the church be different? What does real forgiveness and reconciliation look like?

Christ-Followers Are Tested

We often struggle to understand how difficulties in life can be good for us. The book of James teaches that trials are not only helpful but can be opportunities for us to experience the goodness of God.

You Don't Have to Defend Yourself

The world teaches that vindication and power will bring peace to those who suffer. However, the Bible teaches that true peace is only found when we cultivate attitudes that come as a result of full submission to God. How can we truly live out this upside-down concept?

The Way to Parent

God is a good Father who cares for His children and has given us the parent-to-child relationship as a reminder of how the Father loves us. It is his desire that parents are the most Important pastor in the life of their child.

The Way to Disagree

It seems that the days of being able to disagree with someone and yet still find common ground are behind us. As we look at our social media, cable news, and even to our own close relationships, we likely see negative, argumentative and uncivil disagreement ruling the day. God calls us to a different way.


We've all felt the excitement of starting a new job, a workout program, a home project, or even a new relationship. We're also all familiar with the challenges that come with finishing well. The life of King Solomon serves as a cautionary tale that no matter how well you begin, it really only matters how you end.

Is the Bible Literally True?

We all have questions. But when it comes to God, the church or the Bible, those questions too often go unasked and unanswered. That should not be. In this series, we will explore some of the most pressing questions people ask about spiritual things in order to provide answers that help us live lives that honor God. Today we will begin by asking, "Is the Bible Literally True?"

How Is God Three In One?

Let’s be honest, the concept of the Trinity is mind-blowing. Although initially confusing, understanding this doctrine helps us know the character, love, and grace of God.

Psalm 91

Today, we'll celebrate Father's Day together by diving into Psalm 91 and asking, "What's really in a name?"

Psalm 100

Our little East Lakers have been hard at work memorizing Psalm 100 for several weeks! Join us for a special family service as we unpack the lessons for our lives from this song of praise.

Psalm 13

When God seems most distant, is often when He is closest. David learned this lesson throughout his life and Psalm 13 is a glimpse into his personal lament along with the great hope he found in God.

Psalm 27

This summer, we journeyed through the Psalms and discovered a ton about ourselves and God. Psalm 27 sums up the key lessons we've learned and reminds us that God's got this.

Family Service

This past week, we invited our little East Lakers in for a special worship service to celebrate our big, powerful and awesome God together!

Led By the Holy Spirit

This week, we began a series that will remind us of the power that fuels God's restorative work in our world. We will look to the New Testament church to learn unchanging truths about who we are called to be, no matter the season.

Pursues Unity at All Costs

In His final hours before the cross, Jesus prayed that His present and future followers would experience complete unity. This week, we will conclude our We See a Church series by exploring the blessings that come from unity as followers of Jesus and the damage that disunity can cause.

I Will Share With You

What’s your favorite? Whether we are talking about food, sports teams, or a myriad of other topics, the reality is we all have favorites. The great news is that having favorites is human nature. However, when we allow favoritism to influence our interactions with others, we are in danger of creating a culture that is contrary to Gracism. This week we will explore how we can live out what it looks like to create an “I will share with you” culture here at East Lake.

Invitation to Trust

The Christmas Story doesn’t start with a journey to Bethlehem, a group of shepherds, or even an angel visiting Mary. It starts with an announcement to a faithful priest offering incense to God in Jerusalem. This announcement was not about the Messiah’s birth, but about the birth of his older cousin. It is an announcement that invites us to trust God’s plan over our preconceived notion of His plan because His plan is always the best plan.

Jesus is God

Of all the things Jesus said, there is one question that he asked that we must each find an answer for today: "Who do you say that I am?" At East Lake, we believe that the answer to this question is one of the critical tent poles that holds up the Big Tent! Check out Sunday's message to explore this crucial question with us.

The Meek

In a world where Strength is seen as the ultimate goal words like meek appear to signal weakness. However, in God’s economy, it is in meekness that we see true strength. Jesus challenges His followers to live a Spirit-led, self-controlled, and gentle life that focuses on Kingdom values over personal power or success.

What is Love?

In Luke 6 we read a different accounting of the Beatitudes except after detailing the list we see in Matthew the focus shifts to the topic of love. This week we will explore a letter written by Paul to his friends in Corinth that gives us a heavenly perspective on the power of love that is stronger than any emotion.

The Pure in Heart

We live in a world of constant stimulation. Every day we contend with a 24-hour news cycle that reminds us of how lost our world is, the barrage of Social media posts that paint false pictures of people’s lives, and endless opportunities to choose sin. How can we ensure that we remain pure at heart amid all the chaos in this fallen world? We must learn to run to God and allow Him to redirect our focus to what is truly important: HIM!

Following His Lead

When the world is in turmoil, it is easy for us to find ourselves on a roller coaster of emotion that is fueled by the latest social media post, new conference, or blog post. We can find ourselves feeling fearful, anxious, and/or even hopeless. However, when we FOCUS on Him, we can navigate whatever comes at us. Amid this current uncertainty and beyond, let’s follow His lead so others can see the hope we have in Him.

Trust God with your finances.

God Loves a cheerful giver and yet statistics show us that the last area a follower of Christ submits to Jesus is their finances. Why is this area of our lives so difficult to release to Him? Is it possible that we misunderstand how the power of the Gospel is unleashed when we recognize His ownership of everything?

Celebration Sunday

East Lake celebrates God's faithfulness in times of uncertainty.

Prayer for Deliverance

There are times in our lives when we may not understand why God has placed a mountain in front of us. Often, we look for the safe path or try to skip the journey all together. The reality is God simply wants us to find our safety in climbing the mountain. Habakkuk shows us that true safety comes from following the Lord and embracing His plans.

Why Did Jesus Come to Earth

What exactly did Jesus mean when He said "the poor you shall have with you always?" We want to be a church of people who understand our own brokenness, and Jesus’s plan to redeem each of us so that we might be able to help others without hurting those He desires us to reach.

Family Service

Sometimes we need a little help from our friends to get what we truly need in life. This week our Family Ministry team will help us understand how the faith of four friends created an opportunity for their friend that caused many people to praise Jesus!


In the game Sorry the goal is to move all of your pieces from your home to your safe zone. Along the way your opponents are looking to knock you back home, they accomplish this by collecting the Sorry card then uttering the empty phrase: I’m Sorry while celebrating your defeat. Much like in the game we live in a world of cheap empty apologies. It seems we can’t turn on the News or social media without seeing some public figure saying “I’m Sorry” …… The problem is simply saying “I’m Sorry” to make yourself feel better never seems to make things right. Disciples of Christ need to move beyond empty apologies and start walking along the road of true forgiveness and repentance.

The Heart of Jesus Part I

In the movie the Princess Bride, my favorite character is known for the line “You keep using that word I do not think it means what you think it means." This week in our series GenerUS Life we will explore the actual meaning of the word abundance and will find that it likely doesn’t mean what we think it means. What if it means even more while also meaningless than we think?

Messy Christmas

For many people Christmas can be messy and even painful. Fortunately, for all of us the Christmas is about a savior who was born in a messy place, in a messy way, at a messy time, and His public Birth Announcement was made to messy people.

This Christmas

Mary & Joseph had a simple Christmas, while we’ve all shared with you our different traditional, and messy Christmases, but what will be said about your 2020 Christmas? Will it be the start of something knew? How will we intentionally honor & celebrate JESUS. Make THIS CHRISTMAS the best ever!

Receiving Our Neighbors

Jesus calls us to love our neighbors without any secondary motive. We aren’t called to convert them to Christianity but to simply love them because we love God. Even if they never come to know Jesus loving them well is a worthwhile endeavor that will further His kingdom in wonderful and unexpected ways.

Louder for Those in the Back

As we prepare to wrap up Romans in Reverse what have we learned? This week we will explore how Paul served as the bridge between the Strong and the Weak while being challenged to a lived theology that focuses on intentionally loving God and Loving others!

Man the Sinner

All of mankind suffers from a disease. This disease is known as sin and its symptoms are evident in the individual sins we see all around us as well as in our own mirrors. Sin is serious and keeps us from experiencing the amazing fellowship with our creator that was seen in the Garden. As with any disease you have to know you have it before you can treat it and in order to know you have it, you have to know what it is... Confused yet? Join us for a check-up this week as we explore the impact of our sin.

Our Response

Can you imagine leaving an amazing gift unopened or the dream job offer unanswered? If you did either of those you would be, rightly, considered crazy! Yet so many people fail to respond to the great gift and mission that God has offered to His creation. This week we will explore our response to God’s solution to our sin problem. Have you Responded? Do you respond daily?

The Wisdom of a Father

We all desire wisdom but very often don’t want to do what it takes to attain it. We must accept the reality of discipline if we want to experience and live-in true wisdom. Sadly, we often run from this discipline and harden our hearts. This Father’s Day we will be challenged to see discipline through the eyes of our heavenly father and discover how to apply it to our lives and parenting.

The Wisdom of Trusting

Over the last five weeks we have learned a great deal about God’s wisdom: We have learned that it is the only true wisdom, that we live in a classroom called life that is meant to help us choose joy, that wisdom and folly compete for our hearts, and most recently that we need to choose our Path. This week we will explore what it looks like to acknowledge God and walk on His straight, yet sometimes difficult, path.

Our Values

In order to accomplish a mission or reach a vision, we must define what the core values are essential to make those a reality. At East Lake we have some core values that focus on intentionally loving well. Join us this week as we look at the map laid out before us by the Lord.

Take Initiative

At East Lake We value families and this week our family ministry team walks us through part of the story of Nehemiah. Nehemiah is an example of an ordinary person doing extraordinary things to advance God’s kingdom. We hope you will be challenged to do your part to advance His kingdom here, near, and far.

I Will Cover You.

In a world that idolizes tearing the other side down and winning an argument at all costs we need disciples who treat people with dignity, honor, and respect. Imagine a church where everyone has a seat at the table where we offer scandalous grace to each other to ensure that everyone knows they have equal value? That’s the world that is created when Christians decide to live out the second saying of a Gracist: “I will Cover You”.

I Will Honor You.

As humans we tend to honor the successful, elite, and powerful but Jesus came to turn that thinking upside down. His kingdom is a kingdom of the lowly, downtrodden, and powerless; in other words, each of us. Join us as we explore the fourth saying of a Gracist: I will honor you.

Gifted to Give

So far in this series we have been learning that we were created as God’s masterpiece on purpose with a purpose and for a purpose. This week we close the series with an attitude check about how we manage the gifts and resources God gives us. Are we cheerful willing givers who recognize His ownership or do we hold back and rob ourselves of blessings?

The Gift of Love

In a few weeks we will all celebrate the day that God’s wonderful plan to show His unconditional love to His creation came in human form. This day we call Christmas represents the arrival of the baby who would become the man that proved that the father Loves us and would provide the model for us to love others. This Christmas will you focus on this Love or will you allow the world to sell you a cheap imitation?


Do you believe in Miracles? We are about to launch into a section of Exodus that is filled with miraculous signs and wonders as God continues His plan to free His people from bondage in Egypt. This week we will explore how Miracle sallow us to Exit from the bondage to sin we experience in our lives today.

Redemptive Blood

When we consider how God rescues His people from Bondage in Egypt, we can sometimes get caught up in the Miracles used and miss the faithfulness of God in fulfilling His promise. As we continue in EXIT Us, we see that it really is God’s plan to use miracles to get our attention and rescue the faithful from what enslaves them. But His people must be listening and take action if they want to experience His freedom!

Joy in Unity

Paul challenges the church at Philippi (and us) to live in the Joy available through Christ. Join us as we explore the keys to living in that Joy now matter our circumstance and how we can bridge builders who follow Jesus as we choose His joy in serving others.