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Summary: Light and Darkness, Spiritual Awakening, Worship

A THANKFUL HEART OF WORSHIP - A Spiritual Alarm Clock

November 25, 2018

Ephesians 5:8-20 (p. 816)

Introduction:

My wife Kari is not a morning person. She hates to get up and is hard to wake up…but she is a million times easier to get up now than when we first got married.

When Kari was really young you could not wake her up…it was a little scary.

One time she was babysitting our nieces and nephews and we got home late…It was my brother in law and sister and I. The doors were locked, the porch light was on so we rang the doorbell…beat on the door…walked around to the bedroom and saw Kari asleep…so we beat on the window so hard we were afraid we’d break it…nothing…we called the phone…beat on the door and window some more…she never moved…so I broke in the window and climbed in…let the others in…and made sure Kari was still breathing.

I’ve never met anyone before or since that slept deeper than my wife in our early years of marriage.

Miraculously all that changed at the birth of our first child…she still hated getting up, but Ricky’s cries woke her almost immediately. 38 years later…she watches Oaklynn and gets up pretty early to take care of her…she still doesn’t like mornings…but she sure loves Oaklynn.

I share this with you because falling into a deep spiritual sleep is a scary thing…and I believe our loving and saving God bangs on our windows…knocks on our door…calls our phone…through His Holy Spirit…but many just snore on.

I wrote a poem concerning the Holy Spirit’s call a few years ago:

The Spirit’s Call

WHEN I WAS YOUNG I HEARD THE SPIRIT’S CALL

COME TO A SAVIOR WHO DIED FOR US ALL

BUT I HAD PLENTY OF TIME AND WANTED TO PLAY

SO I RESPONDED

GO SPIRIT, GO AWAY COME AGAIN SOME OTHER DAY

WHEN I WAS OLDER AND I HEARD THE SPIRIT’S CALL

COME TO A SAVIOR WHO DIED FOR US ALL

I WAS BUSY WITH SCHOOL AND WORK AND WANTED THE PAY

SO I RESPONDED

GO SPIRIT, GO AWAY COME AGAIN SOME OTHER DAY

AT THE END OF MY LIFE I HEARD THE SPIRIT’S CALL

COME TO A SAVIOR WHO DIED FOR US ALL

I COULD BARELY HEAR HIS WHISPER AND HAD TO SAY

I’M TOO OLD TO CHANGE AT THE END OF MY DAYS

SO I RESPONDED

GO SPIRIT, GO AWAY COME AGAIN SOME OTHER DAY

THERE WAS NO OTHER DAY.

How many times does God in His AMAZING GRACE sound the spiritual alarm clock?

“WAKE UP, SLEEPER, rise from the dead. And Christ will shine on you.”

I. WHAT’S IT LIKE TO LIVE SLEEP WALKING IN THE DARKNESS?

Paul says, “You were once darkness”…He says, “The deeds we did then were fruitless…so shameful we don’ want to mention how disobedient to God we were…we were foolish…we got drunk…we lived in debauchery.”

If you don’t know what debauchery means, it means…“an excessive indulgence in sensual pleasures.”

If you go back to verse 3 in Ephesians 5 he says there was sexual immorality, impurity, greed, dirty jokes.

It’s a description of a life without God…a life of self gratification and idolatry.

And it doesn’t mean we were all addicts or “in the gutter” drunks (although some of us were)….It simply means we were lost in the darkness of this world…and our God was spelled with two letters…M.E. ME!!!

But we stumbled in the darkness unaware of how lost we really were…because we were surrounded by a crowd of people living the same way with the same purpose.

Paul told the Corinthians “the god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel.” (2 Cor. 4:4)

Satan surrounds us with friends that keep us asleep in the dark…He tempts us with temporary trinkets and momentary numbness…we keep stumbling in the dark…asleep to the reality we are headed toward destruction…and many times we just keep hitting the snooze button as God sounds the alarm…sin wears us out…so we just desire some rest…

Sin always has a diminishing factor to it…It always gives you its best in the beginning…it never gets better after that…only worse…but you’re always chasing that first high for the rest of your life…

Sin always takes you farther than you want to go…It keeps you longer than you want to stay and it always costs you more than you want to pay.

John Piper said, “Sin gets its power by persuading me to believe that I will be happier if I follow it. The power of all temptation is the prospect that it will make me happier.”

And every one of us has followed the darkness of this lie.

Many of our friends, family and neighbors are trapped in this darkness…many believers shipwreck their faith by falling back into this lifestyle.

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