Summary: In this message we will talk about how to have a mind that will be in flow with the spirit, with the living waters inside of us so that those waters can carry us to new life.
A Beautiful Mind
I Am Jesus – part 23
John 7:37-39 (slowly type onto screen…)
Then The River Video (Sermon Spice)
2,000 years ago God the Son – emptied himself… put on human flesh, left all the glories of heaven and walked the dusty streets of first century Palestine… AND UNDERSTAND – Jesus came not only to be the sacrifice for our many sins… WHICH – is a VERY big deal by the way! A big enough deal to put a little bounce in our step, smile on our face and a shout on our lips…
21You used to be far from God. Your thoughts made you his enemies, and you did evil things. 22But his Son became a human and died. So God made peace with you, and now he lets you stand in his presence as people who are holy and faultless and innocent. – Colossians 1:21-22
LIKE – I said, what Jesus did about your sin and mine is a really big deal… BUT – Jesus came not only to pay the penalty for our sins but to make available a new life… The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. – John 10:10
WHEN – the angel broke the apostles out of prison he told them; Go, stand in the temple courts," he said, "and tell the people the full message of this new life."
WHEN – Paul wrote to the church in Corinth telling about the power of the Gospel he said; What this means is that those who become Christians become new persons. They are not the same anymore, for the old life is gone. A new life has begun!
YES – Jesus came so that you and I can live a new life!!! A LIFE – that the N.T. describes as having (among many other things); a peace beyond understanding; contentment in every situation, hope that is living and a joy that inexpressible and glorious.
BUT - for a lot of us, the reality of our life is something that falls way short of this kind of language. YOU SEE – there is this gap between the life that is promised and the life that many of us experience. AND – last we talked about how different people take different approaches to deal with this gap…. (from a message by John Ortberg)
A lot of people take the I’ll just try harder approach…
“I’ll close the gap by my own power and strength. I’ll get up earlier. I’ll pray longer. I’ll read another book. I’ll listen to another tape. I’ll learn new disciplines. I’ll serve more. I’ll work harder. I’ll try to be nicer to people in my life.”
Others take the;
I if I can’t make I’ll just fake it approach…
AND - they pretend that there is no gap. THEY – act and talk as if they are living this new life… BUT - they know they’re not… AND THEY – find this faking to be about as satisfying a hungry person sitting at a table pretending they are eating…
AND - still others take;
The musical church approach….
NOW - people who take this approach think that the reason there is a gap between the promised new life and reality is because of the church that they go do. AND – they think “that if I just went to another church…” A church that did some things a little differently… then this gap would close… BUT – the don’t realize that gap is not in the church it is them.
BUT – the truth is; that working harder, pretending and changing churches never really closes the gap… SO - eventually, most people just give up because after awhile that gap is just too painful. AND - when they hear the stuff that we have been talking not just today but for the last several weeks… (new life, living hope, inexpressible and glorious joy) they feel discouraged or hopeless. BECAUSE - inwardly they decide that this promise of new life (at least for them) is not even possible.
BUT REMEMBER – we said last week… WHAT IF – Jesus really meant what he said about rivers of living water flowing out of the core of your being? WHAT IF - such a life really is possible? WHAT IF – you really can live in the kingdom of God now?
YES – there is a gap between the promised new life and reality… BUT – a river runs through it! A river of God’s grace, power and Spirit…
UNDERSTAND [Tim, Laurie…] - the Spirit of God is like a river and He is flowing all the time? All the time. AND - your job as a believer in Jesus is not to try harder or run faster or get up earlier or pretend like everything is okay OR try yet another church? INSTEAD - your job is to simply jump in the river? Your job is to figure out from one moment to the next HOW to flow with the waves of the Spirit so that He can carry you to the new and better life!