SERMON: When Faith Becomes Frustrated

For the last Sunday Sermon for 2015 at West Angeles Church of God In Christ, visiting Pastor Joseph A. Connor asks us to keep praising God through our frustrations.

Pastor Joseph A. Connor used the story of Jesus’ visit with Mary and Martha in Luke 10 as the basis of his sermon titled, When Faith Becomes Frustrated. 

“The apostle Paul said, ‘I want to know Him,’” said Pastor Connor before the Sunday evening sermon, “and that’s what our objective should be: to know God beyond the limit. The end of the year should be a time to look back and see what God has done, to see how far God has brought us from. And hasn’t God brought us from a mighty long way?”  

Added Presiding Bishop Charles E. Blake, Sr., “Martha’s faith was frustrated, but she said to Mary, ‘Jesus is talking. That’s more important than anything on the face of the earth…and He might not be here tomorrow.  I just want to worship Him and praise Him.’”

“Praise Jesus for who He is,” said Bishop. “I don’t know about you, but I’ve come here to praise Him!  I want God to move in my life; I want to know  Him beyond the limit! Take the limit off God. My God can do anything but fail!”

This entire sermon and many others are available HERE, on West Angeles Gospel On Demand.  Highlights from the sermon follow:

“No matter how much we love Jesus, or how sincere we are in our service to others, there are times – if we’re honest – when our faith becomes frustrated.”

“It has been said that everybody needs a friend.”

“Could any of us truly have gone through what Jesus went through?”

“Life in the spotlight…can be a lonely road. Living under the constant scrutiny of the public is a demanding and sometimes demeaning lifestyle.”

“We need companions with whom we can be ourselves…friends who have no hidden agenda.”

“Even Jesus needed human friends: and so do the rest of us” – Pastor Joseph A. Connor

“Most of us don’t have real friends. We have friendly enemies.”

“A friend loveth at all times. A friend can disagree without being disagreeable.”

“Even Jesus needed human friends, and so do the rest of us.”

“It’s nice to be with somebody with whom you can be yourself.”

“Whatever we as God’s children do, we should do it with pride and with style.”

“Whether pushing a broom or serving a table: whatever we do represents not only us, but the God who made us.”

“The God I serve is first class!”

“Whatever we do, others should be aware that they are in the presence of one of God’s redeemed children.”

“Some of the biggest arguments in the church occur around the kitchen!”

“A friend can disagree without being disagreeable” – Pastor Joseph A. Connor

“All of us at times become frustrated in our service.”

“Frustrated faith is faith that is out of character – and all of us can act out of character at times.”

“When faith becomes frustrated, we lose the joy of serving and and even living for God.”

“I have a difficult time understanding how you can speak in tongues and not speak to me.”

“Faith can become frustration when we feel that, while we do the work, others receive the recognition.”

“When you are frustrated, you may work your fingers to the bone.”

“Some of us have come to the end of 2015…not able to accept the different ways that others serve Jesus.”

“Jesus’ heart is big enough that there is room in the Kingdom of God and in the church for both the Marys and the Marthas”

“We need Marthas to teach us to speak the truth, and we need Marys to remind us to hold our peace.”

“Jesus calls on us to be Mary and Martha”  – Pastor Joseph A. Connor

“Jesus not only points us to Calvary, but also to Gethsemane.”

“Don’t let your frustration keep you from praising God.”

“He’s done too much  for me to let my frustrations quench my spirit.”

“When faith loses it’s hope, do what David says, ‘Make a joyful noise unto the Lord!’”

“I think we ought to give God some praise! We ought to make some noise in here!”

“My high school teacher told my mother I was not college material. But because my mother said to me ‘You are college material’…I got a Bachelor’s Degree….I got a Master’s Degree…I got a Doctorate…I’ve got reason to give God praise. If you’re really thankful for what God has done for you, thank Him for everything and shout Hallelujah!

“Give Him the glory!”

SCRIPTURAL REFERENCES – Luke 10:38-42, Psalm 23:5-6, Psalm 100:1-4.

Pastor Joseph A. Conner is the pastor of New Beginnings Sanctuary of Praise Church of God in Christ in West Philadelphia. He is the chief adjutant and personal secretary to Bishop Benjamin J. Ravened, Sr. of the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction of the Church of God in Christ.  Pastor Connor founded a successful after-school program for boys which has served as a model for similar programs in the West Philadelphia area. He is also employed as a social worker for the Philadelphia Prison System. A graduate of Antioch University of Pennsylvania, Conner also attended the Lutheran Theological Seminary of Philadelphia He holds a Doctorate of Ministry degree.

Conner is the proud husband to June Conner and the father of Jasmin and Joseph, Jr.


Praise the New Year in with West Angeles! Please join Presiding Bishop Charles Edward Blake, Sr, dynamic Evangelist Missionary Joyce Rodgers, the West Angeles Mass Choir, and other special guests for Watch Night Service at the West Angeles at the Cathedral, December 31 at 10 p.m. 3600 Crenshaw Boulevard, LA 90016.

Please join us for the Afterglow Breakfast! We’re having breakfast in the Crystal Room immediately following Watch Night Service, 12:30-2:30 a.m. on January 1, 2016.  Cost: $10 per person. West Angeles North Campus, 3045 Crenshaw Boulevard, LA 90016. See you then!