Yes. She matched pitch at least once!
This week we take obedience to the next level as we study Obstacles to Obedience. I have a feeling that the biggest obstacle is US!!!! Or PRIDE!!!!! Should we take wagers? Oh, that’s not good. (For those of you who don’t know, our city is about to vote on whether or not to pursue a casino gambling license!) Lots of exclamation points today! Reminds me of a Seinfeld episode!
Anyway, I am so pumped to gather and worship with our Lynwood family this weekend. Here’s what we’ll sing:
Hallelujah, God is Here
Sing to the King
I Will Rise
Let the Praises Ring
For All You’ve Done
Man, it’s gonna be a good day. Don’t miss it!
Man, I’ve really got to catch you guys up. Here’s a video from a few weeks ago, maybe a month. Anyway, it’s a Kate original.
You think I’m gonna be trying to sell my house in this post don’t you? Well, this post isn’t about that. Unless of course, you need a house in Rainbow City, AL. In which case, I’ve got a nice one for you.
No, it’s not about that. My friend is also trying to sell a house and I think he’s gotten it right. He’s observant. He’s smart. He travels a lot so he’s seen it all. It works for car dealerships. Why not houses?
If inflatable gorrillas sell cars maybe inflatable dinosaurs sell houses. If it works, you bet I’ll put one up in front of mine.
Did I mention that I have a house to sell in a nice neighborhood in Rainbow City, AL?
What a great time we had studying Jonah on Sunday. Pastor Mark led us through a look at the life of Jonah and what it says about obedience. Did you pick up on the relationship between obedience and knowing the presence of the Lord? After God gave him the command to go and preach to Nineveh, Jonah 1:3 says,
But Jonah rose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord. He went down to Joppa and found a ship going to Tarshish. So he paid the fare and went on board, to go with them to Tarshish, away from the presence of the Lord.
Jonah was not only fleeing God’s will but His very presence as well. And he knew it. Look at what it says in verse 10,
Then the men were exceedingly afraid and said to him, “What is this that you have done!” For the men knew that he was fleeing from the presence of the Lord, because he had told them.
Jonah knew what he was doing. In disobeying God he was giving up intimate fellowship with Him. But do we realize that? Do we really consider the consequences of saying “No” to God or failing to say “Yes” when He calls? Many Christians wonder why they don’t have a closer walk with the Lord. Many don’t even believe one exists. There are many reasons why this could be so, but I wonder if one of the biggest is disobedience. How many Christians sit and wonder why they don’t know God more, why they don’t hear His voice or sense His awesome presence, yet harbor an area of incomplete obedience or full out disobedience?
Well, I can’t say much more. Now you have to seek Him. If you’re one of those (Hey, I’ve been there for sure) who wonder if there is more, or wonder what happened to the close relationship you once had with the Lord, ask for His guidance. Ask Him, as David did (Psalm 139), to search you and know your heart. To try you and know your thoughts. To see if there is any offensive way in you and lead you in the way everlasting. Oh, He already knows. The progress comes when He reveals it to you and you turn to Him. He’s waiting for you.
Praise God, He waits for us.
Last week we began a series called “Yes – Obedience.” You can probably guess the theme. It’s obvious because that’s were we are right now. God is calling us to radical, sacrificial obedience in ministry and biblical discipleship. Before we even consider the questions, our answer has to be “Yes!” It’s called surrender. As we celebrate, we will sing:
Sing to the King
Holy, Holy, Holy
Jesus Paid It All (O Praise the One)
Glorious Day (choir)
Your Grace is Enough
Your Love (I am particularly excited about this one)
Come and worship!
I’m reading through Paul’s letters and I must confess that I thought I would just breeze through Titus. I don’t know why I thought less of the book, I mean the Word of God is the living, active Word of God. But for some reason I did. Now, I’ve spent a whole week in this three chapter book. I love it. Chapter’s 2 and 3 are like a mini Romans – the Cliff’s Notes version. Look at these verses in chapter 2:
For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works. (11-14)
Can’t you see Romans 12:1 in there? He’s saying that we should think about the grace of God. Think about our salvation and what that means in our lives. We should be different. Because of our salvation: we should live differently and we should be eagerly working for our Lord! (“zealous for good works)”.
Look at what he says in chapter 3 verses 4 through 8:
But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. The saying is trustworthy, and I want you to insist on these things, so that those who have believed in God may be careful to devote themselves to good works. These things are excellent and profitable for people.
What a description of the gospel. But remember, he’s not writing to lost people. He’s writing to the church, the saved, the saints, His servants. He’s saying that we should be talking about the gospel. We should be discussing God and who He is. His love. His goodness. His grace. We should explore His attributes. Understanding who He is makes what He did for us even more amazing. Then we should explore what He did for us. Talk about salvation: our sin, Jesus Christ, the cross, the resurrection. We should search the scriptures to know what that means for us. Is it just fire insurance? Or is it more? Are we just waiting on heaven or does it change us here? We are heirs now! We are His children through adoption by His blood.
Why should we continually teach these things? Did you see the “so that?” Of course you did, I put it in bold print. So that we – the church, the people of God, His children – would devote our selves to good works. It’s Romans 12:1.
Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices,holy and pleasing to God–this is your spiritual act of worship.
What’s he saying? Something like, go serve like it’s worship to a holy, loving God who wondrously saved you by the sacrifice of His Son and has showered you with blessings beyond our finite human imaginations. Something like that.