Sermon Series

Sermon Series: Barriers

What do you consider the most powerful threat to our world today? Terror? Corruption? Natural disasters? What if the most powerful threat is a tiny voice inside your head that says you can't make a difference; you can't change your situation; you can't go beyond the barriers? This voice isolates us with fear, preventing us from living out God's love in the most powerful ways possible. In this sermon series, Pastor Brent Ward will help you move beyond these barriers to a life where new ministries emerge, lives are changed, and lasting memories are created.


Sermon Series: Must Haves

There are people who play a larger role in our lives than we recognize. Without them, life is more challenging, and sometimes even impossible. In some instances, these people are oblivious, but at other times it is only in their absence that we realize how vital they are to us. In this series, Pastor Brent Ward calls these people "Must Haves" and looks at several persons from the Bible who are "Must Haves" for our own lives.


Sermon Series: People's Choice

We all have Scriptures that we love, Scriptures that we struggle to understand, Scriptures that we have always longed to hear a sermon about. In this sermon series, Rev. Dr. Tara Paul preaches on People's Choice Scriptures: Bible passages requested from church members and attendees! Listen to these messages with questions and topics inspired by the BUMC congregation.


Sermon Series: Individual Sermons


Sermon Series: Fixer Upper


Sermon Series: Were You There?


Sermon Series: Branch Out


Sermon Series: Family Tree

If you could pass one thing down the Family Tree to your children or to the next generation, what would it be? An education? Financial security? A set of values or virtues? For centuries now, people have been asking questions like: What am I passing down to my children, grandchildren, and other important people in my life? How am I affecting the next generation?


This series of sermons will help you answer these questions and transform the next generation, as you add meaningfully to your legacy on the Family Tree.


Sermon Series: Light the Candle


Sermon Series: How Will You Measure Your Life?


Sermon Series: Under Construction


Sermon Series: Those People

In life we all encounter people who annoy us, challenge us or otherwise displease us.  They are at our schools, in our churches, a part of the workplace, and sometimes even in our homes. They are “those people.”  This series focuses on what God thinks about “those people” and how we can redemptively deal with them the way God has dealt with us. 


Sermon Series: Citius Altius Fortius

In August 2016, the eyes of the world turn to Rio De Janeiro as our greatest athletes compete for Olympic glory. As in ancient times, these athletes have given their lives to training and preparing for the games, and so it is not surprising that the Bible is filled with metaphors which invite us to see our commitment to Christ in light of the commitment of Olympic athletes. This series of messages unpacks these metaphors and helps us discover how, in Christ, our faith can grow “faster, higher, and stronger!”


Sermon Series: Dangerous Prayers


Sermon Series: Me and My Real Family

Family is a gift. But navigating the challenges of family life is not always easy. A million things can go wrong: Pain can get buried. Dreams dismissed. Destructive behaviors denied. Relationships strained. The hope is that all the bad stuff will disappear and the good stuff will rise to the top. Sometimes that happens and sometimes it does not. Sometimes we see that the very things we did not like in our parents are now playing themselves out in us and our families. Me and My Real Family is a sermon series focused on a biblical family who embodies the best and worst in family life and who also reminds us of the power of God to reconcile our families.


Sermon Series: The Jesus Prayer

When I mention the words “The Jesus Prayer” what comes to mind?  It may be what we usually call “The Lord’s Prayer” that Jesus offered His disciples over 2000 years ago when they asked Him, “Lord, how should we pray?” Since that time, the Church has been praying this prayer faithfully. But have you ever wondered what it really means to pray The Lord’s Prayer? And what about it is so important that we need to pray it every Sunday in church? In this sermon series we delve into The Jesus Prayer line by line. Discover why this prayer was radical and controversial for its time, and unpack why it continues to have meaning and relevance for our lives today.


Sermon Series: Not a Self-Guided Tour

No one’s faith journey is meant to be a solo experience. Life should not be a self-guided tour. Each of us needs a community of people who can positively impact the way we look at God, our faith and the world in which we live. Whether we call them mentors, coaches, teachers, friends or something else, we typically grow most as human beings when we are connected within a community of people who love and support us. This sermon series, based in 1 & 2 Timothy, examines how God used others to help a young pastor named Timothy navigate his calling in life. Listen and you may be surprised to find how it helps you navigate your journey as well.

January 10 Paul and Timothy (I Timothy 1:1-2; 4:7, 12-15)
January 17 True or False (I Timothy 1:3-7)
January 24 Remember Who You Are (2 Timothy 1:3-7)
January 31 Finishing Well (2 Timothy 4:7-8)


Sermon Series: Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree

Do you have a favorite carol of Christmas? It may be a hymn like "Silent Night," "Holy Night" or "Away in a Manger," or it could be a secular song like "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree" or "I'll Be Home for Christmas."  Whatever the case, most of us associate the season of Christmas with music and song. There's something about singing the story of the birth of our Savior that warms our hearts and inspires our souls. 


The Gospel writers are no different. They, too, liked rockin' around the Christmas tree. In fact, the very first Christmas was one defined by songs. As you listen to these sermons, we will explore the meaning of the first Christmas carols. From Mary's hymn of praise, "My soul glorifies the Lord," to the angels' chorus on Christmas eve, "Glory to God in the highest," you may be surprised  at how these songs both bless you and speak to issues critical in our world today.


Sermon Series: Give My Life

Moses is thought to be one of the most important figures in the Old Testament. Perhaps the words of Deuteronomy 34:10-12 capture his life best, “Since then, no prophet has risen in Israel like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face,...for no one has ever shown the mighty power or performed the awesome deeds Moses did in the sight of all Israel.” Now what is interesting about this epitaph on Moses' life is that this is not where he started. Early in his life he was a reluctant prophet at best, willing to give very little. However, as his calling unfolded, he freely gave more and more of his life to God and God’s purposes. This series examines this classic story and how it led to the development of a leader unlike any the world has ever seen. What does it mean to “Give My Life” to God?


Sermon Series: Prayers and Dreams

Have you ever wondered what it was like when Jesus prayed? Were His prayers any different than our own? For instance, what did He dream about when He prayed? This sermon series focuses on the prayer life of three of the most memorable and important figures in the Bible. If you have ever wondered how to pray, why we pray, and whether or not God was hearing your prayers, this series of sermons may be for you.



Sermon Series: Spread the Word

The mission of Birmingham UMC is to build a Christian community where people who have a church home, and people who do not, are becoming deeply rooted Christian disciples.  Our vision is to plant, grow, and spread ministries that heal and transform the world.  Like the early church we are charged with the task of embodying the word of Jesus Christ within our world. This sermon series introduces the new vision at Birmingham UMC through a study of the Book of Acts, so we can discover the ways we are called to Spread the Word. 

August 9 The Feed | Worship Branch (Acts 2:17)
August 16 The Shad|e | Heal Branch  (Acts 3:9-10)
August 23 The Grow | Disciple Branch (Luke 14: 25-30; Acts 11:25-26)
August 30 The Plant | Reach Branch (Acts 9:10-15)
September 13 The Spread | Serve Branch (Acts 1:6-8)


Sermon Series: Animated

Animated movies are an amazing invention! They start with a story, the voices get recorded, then the animators start their work. Soon, it becomes a living, moving creation that tells a wonderful story... all because of the Word and the Animator.

Animated Sermons by Rev. Dr. Tara Paul:

  • July 5 Brave | John 8:31-38
  • July 12 Big Hero Six | 1 Corinthians 12:12-26
  • July 19 The Incredibles | Ephesians 1:3-14
  • July 26 Despicable Me | 1 Peter 2:9-10



Sermon Series: Beachside

Do you have a favorite beachside location? I have heard that some people in our congregation like to head to Florida each summer for the beaches at Seaside or Destin. In summers past, we have made the trek from Atlanta to Daytona Beach to see friends and family. Still others enjoy the Atlantic Ocean beaches such as Myrtle Beach or those found along the Georgia coast.

Did you know that Jesus also had some favorite beach spots? In fact, most of His ministry took place with people around water. He called disciples while at the beach; He preached sermons from boats he found at the beach; and He created many memorable moments for people who were at the beach. Join us this June for a fun and sometimes lighthearted look at what Jesus was like when He was beachside.


Sermon Series: Life Lines

We all struggle with something in life. Whether it be greed, lust, anxiety, resentment or some other issue, Christian faith is only useful to us if it helps us to address these dynamics. Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount is regarded as being the most influential sermon ever delivered. Like a spiritual alert from God , Jesus’ words in this sermon are as relevant today as they were when He first delivered them. In this new series of sermons, Dr. Ward will help us to understand how these teachings may offer us lifelines of support as we seek to realize the vision of Christian living Jesus casts in the Sermon on the Mount. The messages are designed to help you laugh at yourself while also reflecting honestly about areas that may be troubling to you. It is our prayer they will make you think and they will give you hope as you find new ways to address your life’s struggles with the Sermon on the Mount.


Sermon Series: Crimson Code

Life is influenced by many different kinds of codes (legal codes, behavior codes, computer codes, etc.) which may be generally defined as systems of symbols or signals used to convey particular meanings. While each code serves a different purpose and speaks to a different aspect of human existence, they all play a crucial role in shaping who we are and how we live our lives. Probably none of them, however, have had the life transforming significance and impact of what might be called The Crimson Code. Join us this Lent as we experience the power of Jesus' seven last words from the cross. Knowing this code may unlock a brand new life for you.


Sermon Series: Who Is This Man?

Since the time of his birth, volumes have been written about the man known as Jesus Christ. Pastors, theologians, philosophers, scientists and others have debated everything from the historical verifiability of His existence to the legitimacy of His claims. Called everything from liar to lunatic to legend to Lord, the early writings about Jesus have been scrutinized perhaps more than any other biographical offerings in history. Join us this January as we seek to see Jesus through the eyes of his earliest followers. As we look at Mark’s Gospel, the first book ever written about Jesus, we will be asking: Who is this man? And what does His life mean for our lives today? These sermons are for anyone who wants to know more about Jesus Christ, so plan to join us!


Sermon Series: The First Noel

Do you ever feel like Christmas has lost its majesty? Are your holidays so filled with preparation for the moments we hope to treasure that we don’t have time to truly treasure those moments? In its simplest form the Christmas story is nothing less than a sparkling rendering of the divine-human encounter. The ordinary is transformed to be extraordinary, and common places become dwellings of God A girl named Mary is to have a baby; Elizabeth comes to her aid; Joseph struggles with a decision; Shepherds come to witness the birth; And Mary treasures up all these things in her heart while the world receives a Savior. Now is there any story more elegant or majestic than that one? Join us this Christmas as we sing and celebrate The First Noel!


Sermon Series: Abraham

Hailed as one of the most important figures in human history. Over half of the world’s population traces their spiritual heritage to this one man. His story lays the foundation for the Bible and his life reflects the ground-breaking possibility of faith. And what a life he lived. Filled with inspirational defining moments, triumph and tragedy, the events of his personal life challenge even the most adventurous modern movie. Abraham was an ordinary man who became extraordinary for one reason: he chose to pursue God in a life of obedient faith while not knowing where that decision would lead him. In a word, he went All In. Will you? Over the next five weeks as we think about stewardship, we will use the amazing story of Abraham as a springboard for going All In with God.

  • October 5 | Genesis 12:1-4 | So Abram Left
  • October 12 | Genesis 15:1-6 | God’s Covenant with Abram
  • October 19 | Genesis 16:1-6 | Hagar and Ishmael
  • October 26 | Genesis 22:1-14 | Here I Am
  • November 2 | Genesis 24:1; 25:5,7-8, 11 | Blessed to Be a Blessing
  • November 9 | Consecration Sunday & Celebration Luncheon