Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: One of the most life giving thoughts is to know, GOD IS FOR YOU


Romans 8:31-39

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P.S. God is for you


Illustration: Chippie the parakeet.

How many are Max Lucado fans? Max Lucado is one of the most prolific Christian writers of this generation. He can take the most complex theological thought, and with a simple phrase or illustration bring its truth to light for any reader of any age to grasp.

If you have read his books, than you have probably read about Chippie the parakeet.

"Chippie never saw it coming. One second he was peacefully perched in his cage, sending a song into the air; the next second he was sucked in, washed up, and blown over.

"His problem began when his owner decided to clean his cage with a vacuum. She had stuck the nozzle in to suck up the seeds and feathers at the bottom of the cage when the nearby telephone rang. Instinctively she turned to pick it up. She had barely said hello when--ssswwwwwpppppp! Chippie got sucked in. She gasped, let the phone drop, and switched off the vacuum. With her heart in her mouth, she unzipped the bag.

"There was Chippie--alive but stunned--covered with heavy gray dust. She grabbed him and rushed to the bathtub, turned on the faucet full blast, and held Chippie under a torrent of ice-cold water, power washing him clean. Then it dawned on her that Chippie was soaking wet and shivering. So she did what any compassionate pet owner would do: she snatched up the hair dryer and blasted him with hot air.

"Did Chippie survive? Yes, but he doesn't sing much anymore. He just sits and stares a lot. It's not hard to see why. Sucked in, washed up, and blown over! It's enough to steal the song from any stout heart."

Life is like that sometimes. You never see it coming, but life just sucks you up, washes you up and blows you over.

ILLUSTRATION: I have to admit that 2010 has been a pretty good year.

In January, I spent 7 days with Pastor Craig, Wendy, Rob Browuer, Chuck Price and a group of other pastors walking where Jesus walked along the streets of Isreal. It was awesome.

Then In April I turned fifty. My church put on a great surprise party for me that was so heart warming. What a great experience I will long remember and cherish for a long time to come.

Throughout this year, The Lord has opened opportunities to preach at a church leadership retreat and other church special services.

This summer the Lord provided for us to be able to purchase a new trailer. It is way larger than the old one and is everything we had trusted God for. The best thing was when it was delivered, the receipt said, PAID IN FULL.

What more can I say about this camp season. We have been so blessed with such outstanding ministry. Can you say AMEN!?

All in all 2010 has been a pretty good year.

Just as I am contemplated the goodness and faithfulness of God, the first night of Heritage camp the cell phone rings at 11:35 from our daughter Esther.

How many know that a call from your daughter at 11:35 p.m. is rarely good news.

Esther’s voice was panicked as she told Sue, her grandfather left a message on the phone, that the doctors had discovered cancer.

One week later, that diagnosis turned terminal.

One week after that another phone call comes that Sues dad had collapsed and was in Brockville General Hospital. A few days after this, he is sent home to undergo palliative care.

It’s funny how life is like that. One minute you are riding a wave of blessing, and the next minute, one phone call and one word can change everything.

When you experience those unexpected challenges of life, then you have no doubt asked some of the questions I have asked,

• God, what have I done to deserve this?

• God where are you, and why don’t you answer my prayer?

• God, Is there any hope?

When Paul wrote this letter to the believers in Rome, the readers were asking the same questions you and I ask when life seems unbearably hard.

All they wanted to do was to live their lives faithfully for Jesus, and the harder they tried the more difficult the challenges and hotter the furnace of affliction.

Like Chippie, they felt as if they were knocked down, washed up, and blown over.

In this chapter, Paul makes clear our victory in Christ. He summarizing this fact with a series of rhetorical questions, beginning with ‘31What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be[a] against us? ‘

Now, Paul is not casting doubt on whether or not God is for the believer. He is using a traditional rabbinical method of teaching in order to bring home the undeniable fact,

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