Monday, February 20, 2012

Plug Into His Power

Making Your Election Sure By Getting Plugged In!

This Is How To Get To Heaven In Style, Strong, Prepared!  God would not make you guess about something this important.  
The Assumption being made here is, you want everything about how to live a life that is pleasing to Him.
2 Peter 1:3-11 tells us about this point.  

1.   His Diving Power Is The Starting Point Of Everything  vs. 3

This is the juice that makes everything happen.  It’s how the Scripture counsels us to live.  It tells us that we must live by His power.  The Scripture says it this way in Zechariah 4:6 It's not by might not power but by my Spirit says the Lord.  Not in my own strength but His.  How do we know about plugging into this power that we are talking about this morning.

2.   We Know Because Of His Precious Promises vs. 4

They are not lightly made promises, they are treasured, precious, valuable, power creating, instructional promises. Promises that God has given us to empower us with the knowledge of how to get to heaven in style, strong, alive, prepared, in victory.     We are not told that we will just barely make it in and have to hope that everything will be okay.  This is what it tells us God is going to do through those promises.

3.   It Teaches Us How To Participate In The Divine Nature vs. 4

 From the Scriptures we learn how to plug into His power to become holy.  1 Peter 1:16 says, Be holy as I am holy.  Matthew 5:48 says, Be perfect just like your Father in heaven is perfect.  You can’t do that unless God helps you through the power of the Holy Spirit.  To do that takes hard work across a lifetime of living. 

4.  We Have To Make Every Effort To Add vs. 5-8

It doesn’t happen automatically but it tells us what to do in order to become Holy.  We have to make EVERY effort to make sure that there is addition going on in our lives toward these goals.
It gives some great suggestions:  To faith add goodness to goodness add knowledge To knowledge add self control to self control add perseverance to perseverance add godliness to godliness add brotherly kindness to brother kindness add love.  And we can't ever stop working on adding because it says that we need them in increasing measure to stay strong, triumphant, victorious, prepared, alive, vigorous.  By doing this here's what happens.
5.  We Make Our Elections Sure vs. 10

It says something really cool, if we follow these directions we won’t fall.  This is the perspective this text takes, we don’t want to become imprisoned again by falling into a trap.  1 Peter 5:8 says, be alert and of sober mind.  Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.  We can't allow ourselves to fall into his trap and become ensnared again.  Galatians 5:1 says, it is for freedom that Christ has set us free.  Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by the yoke of slavery.  That is what the adding process is helping us avoid so that we can can reach our goal.  And here's the ultimate goal and the really coll part.

6.  We Will Be Welcomed Into Heaven With Great Fanfare vs. 11
He’s going to get the party started when you arrive.  We are going to be welcomed into heaven with great fanfare.  It's going to be a great celebration.  

Weekly Verse:  2 Peter 1:5-8

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Are You A Humanitarian Or A Missionary

Sunday Service February 12, 2012
Humanitarian or Missionary?

Today we are going to talk about the difference between a humanitarian and a missionary.
Matthew 5:16
This is How I’m Defining A Humanitarian
1.       A Person Who Does Good Deeds Just To Do Them!
So a humanitarian is a nice person.
It’s a person who does good simply to do good.
They make the world a better softer place.
Absolutely nothing wrong with that especially when you consider the alternative to making the choice to be a nice people and to do good things for other people.
There’s plenty of room for humanitarian acts between people.
And you will reap the benefits of that choice, people will think you are nice and they like you.
You will like yourself a lot more also because it feels good to be nice to people.
You will have the satisfaction of knowing they have made others feel better.
Now The Missionary Has a totally different motivation.
2.       The Missionary Does Good For A Purpose
A Missionary Is A Person Who Does Stuff Because of The Mission.
The Missionary is looking to establish a connection with people on purpose.
The missionary wants to establish a connection with people so that they might establish a connection with God.
The missionary is intentional about this uses the opportunities that arise out of the good act to point people to a relationship with God.
So the Missionary looks to capitalize on those opportunities.
So if you are going to be a  missionary doer of good, you have to study up on the skills that you will need to capitalize on those opportunites.
-          You have to know some key scripture
o   How To Explain The Gospel
-          You have to have the boldness to launch onto a bridge that the good work has built.
-          You Have to be prayed up.
-          You have to really believe the message.
Here’s the great point of it.
3.       You Never Run Out Of Ammunition
The only limit that you have is the limits you place on yourself.
You can do this as much as your heart desires.
And there are an unending amount of options for creativity, for doing stuff that fits your personality, financial ability, skills and talents.
 And it works because God is right there with you when it comes to these efforts.
He doesn’t 1 person to perish without knowing Him.
2 Peter 3:9
So He is going to work through your efforts.
Wouldn’t it be cool to make that connection with someone and help them establish their relationship with Christ?
Yes it would.
Matthew 5:16 says what these good works are about, it is so that people will see your good works and praise your Father.
And Here’s What Happens For You 
Hebrews 13:16 And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

What Are We Fixed On?

There is a great verse of Scripture that I have been concentrating on today.  It's 2 Corinthians 4:16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.  Everything seen is temporary but there is an unseen side of life that is eternal and that will last forever.  The Scripture gives us an eternal reference point that reminds us what to focus on.  This is a practical application of how to do what Hebrews 11 says about faith.  Hebrews 11:1, Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.  We have to focus on the unseen side of life more than the seen.  What we see can be very discouraging.  What's seen can be such as strong foe that it can affect our ability to have faith as we persevere in the midst of our circumstances.  But there is something far better to focus or fix upon, that is the unseen.  What is the unseen?  It is what God is up to.  It is what God has to say about our circumstances.  It is what we know about Him because of what we have experienced.  It is what He is doing and has promised that we can't necessarily see at work.  So make an important decision.  Decide to focus on something that is far better than what you can see.  Focus on Him and His unseen eternal work.  It is a foundation to stand upon.  It is strength beyond the circumstances.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

How Does A Person Change?

Sunday Service February 5, 2012

How Does A Person Change? 

I want to be your best cheerleader for change.  You can do it!  You can make changes!  There is a clear path to change.  God is a change agent.  2 Cor. 5:17 says God intends to make you into a new creation.  Quote:  Change Is Possible Because God Is Faithful.  Say it with me:  Change Is Possible Because God Is Faithful.
But how does a person change?  Philippians 4:13,  I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

1.        Make The Decision
How motivated are you to change.  Making up your mind is very important.  Change Must Be A Cognizant Process.  Change is something you need to intellectualize.  This is a thoughtful process to change based on God’s direction.

Philippians 4:7-8

2.        Start Making Switches
You have to change ingrained behaviors.  Many of those behaviors are attached to something else.

                           a.       Long held habits

b.      Things you were taught

c.       Self defense mechanisms

d.      Coping skills

e.      Things you enjoy

f.        Difficult situations that occurred In your life

g.       Circumstances that you have put yourself in

So what are the switches that I am talking about?

3.       You Need A Plan Or You Won’t Change

                                         a.      You need something to substitute

                                         b.      It’s important to Avoid activities that trigger the behavior you are trying to change.

II Timothy 2:22 says to Flee Youthful lusts.  God is in the mind renewal business all you have to do is provide Him the resources.  You may have to sever ties with old pals.  That’s hard but the question is; “How bad do you want to make change”?
                                          c.      Be ready for the expected difficulties

You make a lot of changes in your life even if they are just the ones that you are forced into. If you boss says change or go bye bye I bet you change.  So you have experience with the difficulties and they are expected.
                                          d.      Develop accountability

1 Cororthians 11:1
Paul said follow me as I follow Christ and He checked up on the progress.  That’s accountability.

Weekly Verse:  Romans 12:1-2