Summary: A sermon in which the conclusion is that there is no such thing as an impossible situation.
“Anything is Possible”
By: Ken Sauer, Pastor of East Ridge United Methodist Church, Chattanooga, TN www.eastridgeumc.org
Anxiety is the way of life for many of us.
With so much competition and pressure, with so many others striving for the same dollar or rung on the ladder we are bound to think that there is something bad waiting for us around every corner.
So our defenses are up and our blood-pressure soars.
Many of us are so afraid of failure that we seem destined to fail.
Or, nothing is ever good enough, no matter how good it really is.
So we stress.
And we set-up self-fulfilling prophecies of failure.
But life doesn’t have to be this way.
And the reason?
God is in control.
And, as Paul says, we can say too, “I can do everything through him who gives me strength.”
How many of us believe that tonight?
If we don’t believe it, we would do well to learn to believe it!!!
It will make all the difference in the world.
Now this confidence, this strength doesn’t come from ourselves.
Rather it comes from a complete reliance on the power, love and goodness of God.
As Paul says in Romans Chapter 8: “If God is for us, who can be against us?”
“we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
That is pretty powerful.
As a matter of fact, there is nothing more powerful than the love of God.
There is nothing that can conquer it!
There is nothing that can defeat it.
There is no foe that can even come close to it!
God has proven God’s love for us through Jesus Christ our Lord!!!
So what are we anxious about?
Anything is possible through the love of Christ!!!
Anything is possible when we trust wholly and completely in God.
In our Old Testament Lesson from Ezekiel, we come upon the call of God in Ezekiel’s life.
Ezekiel was a young priest in training.
And aren’t we all “priests in training”?
“A royal priesthood” as Peter puts it.
So Ezekiel is brought to this place which is called “the Valley of the Dry Bones.”
And in this valley, there is nothing but death, and hopelessness.
Many of us, if we were to come upon a scene like this, would just turn around and go home.
It’s like setting out to be an evangelist in one of the most dangerous gang riddled slums.
Or going to a neighborhood filled with CEO’s and other executives, with a Bible and a call for all to repent and give all they have to the poor.
It just isn’t happening.
It just isn’t going to work.
What’s the point?
It’s a lost cause.
But again, with God nothing and nobody is a lost cause!!!
So the Lord brought Ezekiel out to the middle of a land of death.
It was filled with bones.
As Ezekiel writes, “He led me back and forth among them, and I saw a great many bones on the floor of the valley, bones that were very dry.”
Then a remarkable thing happens.
God asks Ezekiel a question.
It may seem like a no-brainer.
The answer to which is a scoff, a laugh and an “of course not!”
God asks Ezekiel, “Son of man, can these bones live?”
Ezekiel is in a war-zone, but the battle is over!
The enemy appears to have won.
All around him he sees unparalleled devastation and hopelessness!!!
And Ezekiel’s answer to God’s question of “can these bones live?”
“O Sovereign Lord, you alone know.”
Not a laugh.
Not a snort.
Not a “are you kidding?”
“Is this some kind of joke?”
But, instead, “God You are in control of all things, and You can make them come to life. You are over all things. Even death itself!!!”
What are some situations that are going on in your life, in your community that are comparable to a valley of dry and dead bones?
What is bothering you?
What is making you feel hopeless?
What are you about to, or what have you—given up for gone, finished, over-with, dead?
How can you address such things in ways that will restore life and hope?
Do we trust God enough to say, “you alone know”?
God instructed Ezekiel what to do.
And He told Ezekiel “I will make breath enter [the bones], and [the bones] will come to life.”
So Ezekiel trusted in God.
Ezekiel believed he could do all things through God.