Sermons

Summary: Striving to live in harmony with others speaks volumes about “who” & “what” you’re really living for!

Is anybody thirsty? Man, after that awesome worship we just had, I’m thirsty! Do you guys mind if I drink this Diet Coke while I preach? You know what—We’re family! I’ve got a few extra Cokes and Diet Cokes with me today! Would anyone else like to have an ice-cold Coke while I preach! And these are ice cold! Would anyone else like a Coke?

Well, you know what; I’ve got enough cokes for everyone! [have ushers come down the isles with can’s of coke and diet coke…] -- [Be like Oprah, “You get a coke, you get a coke, you get a coke!”] – don’t open it yet! I’ve always wanted to do this… On the count of 3, let’s all open them at the same time, and let’s see what that sounds like… Ready – 1, 2, 3!

Pretty good stuff isn’t it? Did you know that it used to be promoted that if everyone would drink a Coke, the world would be in harmony? Some of you will remember jingle…

I'd like to buy the world a home and furnish it with love,

Grow apple trees and honey bees, and snow-white turtle doves.

I'd like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony,

I'd like to buy the world a Coke and keep it company.

It was one of Coca-Cola’s most successful ad campaigns ever!

Bill Backer was the one who originally came up with the idea for this successful jingle. He was on a flight to London that had to be diverted to Ireland due to bad weather. People were angry that they couldn’t make their destination, and all of them were forced to spend the night in the airport.

The next morning he and the other passengers were gathered around the little airport coffee shop and he began to notice something. No one was irritated anymore. In fact people were laughing and having a good time. (Kind of like us right now!) He noticed that everyone had something in common. They were all drinking Coke!

Bill Backer recalls that moment in his book The Care and Feeding of Ideas.

In that moment, I began to see a bottle of Coca Cola as more than a drink. I began to see the familiar words, "Let's have a Coke," as a subtle way of saying, "Let's keep each other company for a little while."

So that was the basic idea: to see Coke not as it was originally designed to be - a liquid refresher - but as a tiny bit of commonality between all peoples, a universally liked formula that would help to keep them company for a few minutes. - Bill Backer as recalled in his book The Care and Feeding of Ideas (New York: Times Books/Random House, 1993)

They were trying to sell the idea that Coca-Cola had the power to bring people together, to help them live in harmony! Can you imagine if that were true?

• Every refrigerator in every home in America would have an endless supply of Coke!

• I guarantee you that Coca-Cola would be available 24 hours a day 7 days a week here at New Life! Coca-Cola would be served at every service, every youth group, and every Life group! Coca-Cola would be the drink of choice in every leadership meeting, Bible study, and ministry activity!

• Coke would be offered in every classroom in every school and in the country!

• Every office, and factory in America would have Coke!

• Every police station and courthouse in America would require everyone to consume a Coca-Cola upon entrance.

• We’d airdrop bottles of Coke on Washington DC every day!

If that were true, every restaurant, gas station, and truck stop would hang a sign out front that says “Coca-Cola served here daily – It’s the harmony drink!”

But it’s not true! A Coke is “just a coke!”

I’m sure that all of us can think of at least one person in our lives that we are not in harmony with! – At least one person in your life that you say to yourselves, “This person’s sole purpose on this earth is to cause me grief!”

Man, I tell you, when relationships aren’t right, (when you’re out of harmony with someone else) life can be miserable can’t it!

Did you hear about the two guys named Rufus and George who were marooned on a desert island? After a year they couldn’t stand each other. One day Rufus found an old green bottle washed up on the shore. He rubbed it, and, voila! – a genie appeared. George saw what was happening, and grabbed the bottle – Gimmie a wish, genie.

The genie refused, saying, Rufus found me, he gets to make a wish. But, I tell you what – whatever he wishes for (doesn’t matter what it is), money, women, power – I’ll give you twice what he gets.

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