3/8/2020 EASTER PEOPLE - Focus on Building Others Up
Life Circumstances – Life Choices – Life’s Storms
These all relate to our everyday lives. We sometimes attribute the circumstances that surround our life as the cause for troubles, or it may be a poor choice, sometimes it’s a combination of both. How are we to respond when difficulties arise for us, but even more so for our loved ones?
We’re tempted to control the lives of our children to help them avoid making poor choices. To tell them the choice they should make. Or better yet, to demand them to make the choice that we choose for them. Is that building them up, helping them to learn. Chip Ingram, in his message on “Great in God’s Eyes – Empowering Great People” says we are to ‘train up’. Remember Proverb 22:6, “Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old, he will not depart from it”. To train up is to build up, to help them to learn. Sunday during worship we witnessed a baptism for little Madigan. Her parents want the gift for her, they are wanting to train her up. It’s waiting for her, the gift of what Jesus has in store for her, for our little ones, for all who want to receive it. We also sang the song, ‘Softly and Tenderly Jesus is Calling’, calling all sinners to him. This gift is for all who are young in the faith, regardless of age. It’s our duty as Easter People to teach, to train up, to build up those who have yet to open that gift.
Phil Tuttle of Through the Bible, in his message of “Raise up a Child” used the story of the Prodigal Son to get his point across. That we need to be people of compassion. He says, Compassion focuses on the person – not the behavior. In the story the father had two sons each with their own set of problems and choices. He allowed the son to make his choice to leave. Phil says that sometimes you have to get lost before you can be found. In other words, they need to learn the hard way. The father worried for the son, looked on the horizon for him daily, was elated with joy to see him returning in the distance. Would the son have learned a valuable lesson if the father made the choice for the son? No.
Chip Ingram also shared that we become Great in God’s eyes by helping others become greater than ourselves. Great Christians empower other people, they die to self and pass on what they’ve learned to another person. God is at work continually in us, and through us. As Pastor George shared, “You are the diamond God is forming, God wants to work in us and through us in the process.” In 2 Timothy 2:2 Good Soldier of Christ, Jesus says, “You then, my child, be strengthen by the grace that is in Christ Jesus, and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, entrust to faithful men, who will be able to teach others also”.
So then are we supposed to just let our kids, our loved ones, go? Make poor choices? All that will do is give us a lot of grief and worry. We’d say no, not exactly, but we need to loosen the rope that’s holding them, teach as we go along, allow them to make mistakes, it’s all part of the growing process. Not only in life in general, but also in their faith walk.
Louie Giglio, in Eyes UP wants us to see the God of Heaven. To look up to the one who created all - God. He has an unbroken track record of faithfulness. He never sleeps, nor slumbers. Loud praise replaces loud fears, Louie says. He’s bigger than any storm that’s coming. Ask God what to do because the Father knows the things you need before you ask them. He’s going to do the best thing. He’s going to take care of you – through the storm. He’s going to meet us in that place, with his grace.
Eyes UP is a very powerful instructional true worship video where we learned that we need to find our secret place, just ourselves and God; get on our knees with God, where the power is, with hands open. Once we bow, it’s easiest to open our hands. Open your hands and release the destiny into the hands of God. Focus, gazing up to worship, I’m here to trust you God. Pray: Whatever you want to do God is what I want to do – my hands are open, take out and put in what your will is God, I’m letting go. I trust and believe in you – all the way through Lord. Proverbs 95: 6-7 “Come, let’s worship him and bow down. Let’s kneel before the Lord who made us, because he is our God and we are the people he takes care of and the sheep that he tends.”
The choices we make, the circumstances we find ourselves in. We heard during Sunday’s message do not be deceived, every good gift come from God, look for the good gift. Tested for our faith, by enduring we grow, in the end we’re stronger, honoring God to seek His best. God is not out to destroy us, but to give us good gifts. Easter People, Build up!
Larry & Darlene