Summary: Many Christians are waiting for a "perfect day" to reach out to others, but Jesus said the harvest is now.
Are We There Yet?
Intr.: Illus. Thomas Huxley was going no where fast.
1. Have you ever heard (or said) the words “Are we there yet?”
2. Have you ever thought “where did the time go?”
3. Could it be we are rushing to something that we already have?
1. Jesus meets a Samaritan woman and ministers to her.
2. The disciples have an agenda to do something important – eat!
3. Jesus stops their plans and shows them that there is a harvest right now.
We can have a spiritual harvest by following these principles:
I. Stop the rush. Jesus sat down. John 4:6
1. Because sometimes difficult journey brings a divine appointment (he chose this road).
2. Because we miss many things thinking about the next thing on our agenda.
(We say, “It’s Friday, but Sunday’s coming,” but “Sunday” already came and went!)
Illus.: Charles Swindoll’s daughter Colleen. “’Daddy, I wanna tell you somethin’ and I’ll tell you really fast.’ "Suddenly realizing her frustration, I answered,’ Honey, you can tell me -- and you don’t have to tell me really fast. Say it slowly." "I’ll never forget her answer: ’Then listen slowly.’"
3. By focusing on today, not worrying about tomorrow. Mt. 6:34, James 4:11-14
1) Because we have brief moments of grace. Ezra 9:8
2) “Do not say to your neighbor, "Come back later; I’ll give it tomorrow." Prov. 3:28
3) Because today is the day of salvation. 2 Cor. 6:2
Illus.: Popular teenager in youth group: “I didn’t even see the other (unpopular) kids.”
II. See the harvest. Lift up your eyes. John 4:31-35
1. Because our priorities cloud our vision. The disciples were more concerned about food than people.
2. Because there is better food (spiritual satisfaction is better!)
3. Because we need a broader perspective – it is not just about “me.”
1) We need to open our eyes to the “Samaritans.”
2) Are we looking for the “wrong” right people?
Illus: Quote from movie: “Sixth Sense:” “I see dead people.” Do we see any “dead” people?
Quote: Loren Mead: God’s apostolic mission, Five Challenges of the Once and Future Church
III. Surrender the credit. John 4:36-38
1. Because we reap where others have worked.
2. Because Jesus ran away from competition John 4:1-3
3. Because success is not defined by attendance.
4. Because the “food” that sometimes gets in the way our harvest is “ministry.”
Illus. What is the priority: Church success or neighbors, broken lives?
Concl.: Therefore, we can have a spiritual harvest.
Illus: My sister came to see me. I didn’t give her a hug.
1. What are you looking at? Do you see a harvest?
2. What could be a harvest for you right now?
3. What about giving someone a hug?