Matt Reagan

2015 NYC - Only One Family by Matt Reagan


No one in the world is outside of a relational context

  • Genesis 12:1-3 “Now the Lord said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your father's house to the land that I will show you. 2 And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. 3 I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”

  • The units of the earth are families

  • America is one of the most individualistic cultures in the world

  • Matthew 12:48- 50 “But he replied to the man who told him, “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” 49 And stretching out his hand toward his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers! 50 For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.”

Family is hard because the idea or concept is wonderful, but it rarely lives up to what we hope for in true family

True Family:
1. They know each other

  • The deepest longing of the human heart is to know and be known
  • In heaven everyone will know each other perfectly- That's scary right now
  • 2 Timothy 1: 2-7

2. They delight in each other's joy

  • No competition

3. They do not perform for one another

  • Nobody is looking at me, they are too busy looking at themselves
  • Not putting on a show
  • Song, "Unsteady" by the X Ambassadors
  • True families are a haven and a refuge 

4. They discuss each other's pain
5. They walk through conflict

  • Galatians 6: 1-2

6. They aren't going anywhere

    True families are a messy, wonderfully and healthily messy

    • “The person who loves their dream of community will destroy community, but the person who loves those around them will create community.” -  Dietrich Bonhoeffer

    • Ephesians 2: 14-20

    How do you step into this family?

    • Vertically

    • Galatians 4:4-6

    2015 NYC - Only One Day by Matt Reagan

    Summary: We have one life and it comes from God to us and it fills us up like a chocolate fountain and it overflows from the trinity to us, to other people our one family and then other lives, one life at a time in the world, those who we want to bring in the family so they will be in the family forever.

    1 Corinthians 10:31  “So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”

    12 crossroads we experience in any normal day

    1. Wake up. To which voice will you listen, the voice of waking, of life or the voice of escape. You remember the world is safe because God is safe
    2. Two more voices. One speaks of performance and tasks, the other is the voice of God saying to rest in Jesus, be not do.
    3. When you read the bible you feel the call of the scriptures is too hard to live out. You are torn again. You can muster up strength, or you can go to God for help.
    4. Communing with God, distractions are already calling but you know there are people who need the same love you are fighting for.
    5. What is my purpose today? To be impressive or to be impressed?
    6. Breakfast. You can stare blankly or you can actually enjoy the food, think of the great chef who created food to be good, not just for fuel.
    7. Class. Opening your mouth to meet the person sitting next to you. You remember he needs Jesus. You remember you are safe, the one who made the world loves you.
    8. You know pressing into this conversation will be messy. He hurts, you know it, and you’re a chocolate fountain full of hope.
    9. Learning in class. God wants you to know him in history class, so you actually listen. You think of pain and fear that people feel.
    10. You decide to ask deeper questions to the person who is hurting.
    11. Should you bring up Jesus to this person, it would be taboo and awkward. You ask them to study the bible.
    12. You could call someone to get help, but that would be admitting weakness and fear. You remember you are weak and needed a savior to die for you, so you ask for help.


    Four Considerations:

    1. In a hypothetical way, you chose the right way every time, but what if you don’t. You can go the way of guilt or you can go the way of repentance

    •  2 Corinthians 7: 7-10 “8 For even if I made you grieve with my letter, I do not regret it—though I did regret it, for I see that that letter grieved you, though only for a while. 9 As it is, I rejoice, not because you were grieved, but because you were grieved into repenting. For you felt a godly grief, so that you suffered no loss through us.”

    2. The christian life is both harder and easier that the life of a non- believer

    • It's hard to stay awake as a christian, we need vigilance because we want God.
    • We are fighting for rest

    3. There is coming a day when you don’t have to fight against yourself

    • This life is a vapors breath


    4. God will carry you in his arms until that day

    • We fight with his strength

    2015 NYC - Only One Way by Matt Reagan

    Hebrews 9:27- 28 “27 And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment, 28 so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.”

    •  I only have this one life, then I will live forever, I will never stop existing

    What do we do with this one life?
    1. You die to it 

    • Colossians 3:3, 2 Corinthians 4:17
    • Everything is mine so we die to this life, how can we not give it up when we have everything in Christ?
    • Is our life dear to us?
    • The glory we have in Christ far outweighs all the suffering and pain we endure for the gospel to go forth.  

    2. You go where hurting people are

    • Because we are in Jesus, we are invincible. What are they going to do kill us? we would only go to paradise. 

    3. You pour your life and that one life out gladly 

    • Philippians 2: 16- 17, 2 Corinthians 12:15 
    • We get spent for someone else so that their life can be saved 
    • Don’t just be a candle that brings light, but be a flashlight that points to Jesus so that others might know him. 
    • Give your life away one life at a time

    Five ways to die:

    1. Pray for one life on campus
    2. Start a spiritual conversation with them
    3. Invite them to see Jesus in the Bible
    4. Give you leisure, development, and free time to them
    5. Teach them that one love so they will die to their one life.  

    2015 NYC - Only One Love by Matt Reagan

    2 Corinthians 4:4-6 “4 In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. 5 For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus' sake. 6 For God, who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.”

    1. How do we see the glory of God?

    • In the face of Christ

    • Christ came to demonstrate God and His love

    2. What is the gospel?

    • Jesus shows himself through it

    • 1 Peter 3:18 - Paul is the foremost of sinners

    *There is one love, God’s love for us. The gospel is free, His love is free*

    3. Why don’t we get giddy when we start talking about the gospel of Jesus?  
     - Because we don’t think of God as a person, we think of God as a concept

         a.  We are meant to know the warm, loving face of our father God

         b. Because we think of Him as a cosmic police officer who is never                      pleased

    • His countenance is a frown

    • Luke 15:20 “And he arose and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him.”

    • Revelation 3:20 “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.”

       c. Because we don’t look at the world around us as loving communication

    • But everything around us is sending a message from God

    • Psalm 19:1-5 “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. Day to day pours out speech, and night to night reveals knowledge. There is no speech, nor are there words, whose voice is not heard. Their voice goes out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them he has set a tent for the sun, which comes out like a bridegroom leaving it's chamber, and, like a strong man runs it's course for joy."
      Because the cross of Jesus has become cliche

        d. Because the cross of Jesus has become cliche

    • Use my imagination to see the cross more clearly

    2012 NYC - Life Is Hard

    Matt Reagan at the Campus Outreach Milwaukee New Years Conference

    From stable, suburban students to those with bitterly broken backgrounds, we can all relate to some measure of suffering and the questions that ensue. Come hear honest and hopeful perspective on how to mourn, rejoice, and walk through pain in our lives.

    2014 NYC Rally 8 - Matt Reagan

    Matt Reagan Morning rally on January 1st, 2015 at the Campus Outreach Milwaukee New Years Conference

    We're sorry!  The audio is not available for this talk.

    Rally Recap

    Better isn't necessarily easier.

    The worlds life is harder because they are without hope and without God in the world. But we have hope for those who are in Christ.

    3 ways that it is harder:

    1. We will not be universally liked.

      1. “Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.” (Matthew 10:16 ESV)

      2. “and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.” (Matthew 10:22 ESV)

      3. “Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted,” (2 Timothy 3:12 ESV)

    “And when they had called in the apostles, they beat them and charged them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. Then they left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name.” (Acts 5:40–41 ESV)

    1. We fight against ourselves constantly.

      1. “For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.” (Romans 8:13 ESV)

    2. We are not escapists.

      1. We live in a faith system with its foundation in Christ which means we can look at anything in the face (death, cancer, work) and handle it by His grace.

      2. Because we are not escapists we are sorrowful (2 Cor. 6:10a).

    What are we sorrowful about?

    1. Our sin (2 Cor. 7:10)

    2. The pain, hopelessness, helplessness, and brokenness of the world.

      1. “When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.” (Matthew 9:36 ESV)

      2. “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing!” (Luke 13:34 ESV)

      3. “For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now.” (Romans 8:22 ESV)

    3. Over the condemnation of the world.

      1. “I am speaking the truth in Christ—I am not lying; my conscience bears me witness in the Holy Spirit— that I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh.” (Romans 9:1–3 ESV)

    How is sorrow better?

    1. Because it is real.

    2. Because it makes us like Jesus. Jesus came to be our suffering savior.

      1. “that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death,” (Philippians 3:10 ESV)

    3. The capacity for sorrow enables the capacity for joy both now and eternal life.

    “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.” (1 Peter 1:3–9 ESV)

    Personal Reflection Question:

    1. What does it mean that “better isn't always easier?” Do you believe it? Why or why not?


    2014 NYC Rally 5 - Matt Reagan

    Matt Reagan Morning rally on December 31st, 2014 at the Campus Outreach Milwaukee New Years Conference

    Rally Recap

    A life given away is a better life.

    You who have life, what will you do with it?

    “But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith” (Philippians 3:7-9 ESV)

    For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. Yet which I shall choose I cannot tell. I am hard pressed between the two. My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better. But to remain in the flesh is more necessary on your account. Convinced of this, I know that I will remain and continue with you all, for your progress and joy in the faith, so that in me you may have ample cause to glory in Christ Jesus, because of my coming to you again.” (Philippians 1:21-26 ESV)

    To die is to be with Christ. It is far better.

    “In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”” (Acts 20:35 ESV)

    Joy is a work of God. A shared joy is a double or completed joy.

    “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we looked upon and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life—the life was made manifest, and we have seen it, and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was made manifest to us—that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. And we are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.” (1 John 1:1-4 ESV)

    When others gain, you gain. When Jesus meets your needs, you can just enjoy him and bring others in.

    The majority of your life will be spent with Jesus. This is not your life, it is a vapors breath. Your life is with Christ. Do you want to be known for your career on earth?

    I’m calling you to die. Make life trajectory decisions that aren’t about taking but giving your life away.

    A life given away is better.

    “For what is our hope or joy or crown of boasting before our Lord Jesus at his coming? Is it not you? For you are our glory and joy.” (1 Thessalonians 2:19-20 ESV)

    Personal Reflection Questions:

    1. What life trajectory is better?

    2. Considering you have been given everything, what could it look like to give your life away?

    3. Who is one person that doesn’t know Christ, that I will die for (because I’ve already been handed the Kingdom)?


    2014 NYC Rally 4 - Matt Reagan

    Matt Reagan Evening rally on December 30th, 2014 at the Campus Outreach Milwaukee New Years Conference

    Rally Recap

    Theme: Better

    God is better at fulfilling your desires than anything else in the world is. He made you for him.

    “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.”  (Psalm 37:4 ESV)

    “You open your hand; you satisfy the desire of every living thing.” (Psalm 145:16 ESV)

    The good news of the gospel is better news than I ever thought it was, and better than you think it is. It has nothing to do with you. Jesus is our substitute.

    “Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness” (Romans 4:4-5 ESV)

    “For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.” (Hebrews 10:14 ESV)

    1.  Community is better than isolation.

    Nobody wants to be alone. It is written in your heart that we are not to be alone.

    “Then the LORD God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.”” (Genesis 2:18 ESV)

    God is triune. He has never been alone. Father, Son and Spirit have always been together. This is deeper than accountability. You are made to tie your life in deeply with others. You are made to know and be known.

    Why do we want to be alone? If people know me, my weaknesses will be exposed. When people know, I won’t be safe or accepted.

    2.  Christian community is better than all the other ones.

    Reason 1: You are welcome in your weakness.

    “And as Jesus reclined at table in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and were reclining with Jesus and his disciples. And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” But when he heard it, he said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. Go and learn what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.”” (Matthew 9:10-13 ESV)

    Reason 2: We’re not done with each other in our weakness.

    “Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted.” (Galatians 6:1 ESV)

    “Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. For we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end.” (Hebrews 3:12-14 ESV)

    3.  Community with Jesus is better than Christian community.

    The clearest way you’ll see Jesus’ face in this world is through Christian community. You won’t see it all the way, because we’re still broken.

    “Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world.” (John 17:24 ESV)

    You are made for relationship not isolation. Lean into people’s lives.

    Personal Reflection Questions:

    1. Is Christ really better?

    2. When you want to be by yourself and not in someones life, why? Why do you want to be alone?

    3. How can you pursue deeper Christian community?