6-Week Series: Against All Odds


Summary: Some one once said “Let your hopes, not your hurts, shape your future.”

Series Review

1. When You’re In A Storm, You Cannot Depend On Human Wisdom

The sailors knew what to do when they found themselves caught in a storm so they begin to lighten the ship’s load and even threw the tackle overboard.

2. When You’re In A Storm, You Can Depend On Godly Wisdom

After the sailors had done all that they knew to do, Paul stands up and gives them the “Word of the Lord” to let them know that they will all survive the storm they were in.

3. When You’re In A Storm, You Need To Drop Some Anchors

Acts 4:29 says, “Then, fearing lest we should run aground on the rocks, they dropped four anchors from the stern, and prayed for day to come.”

A. The Anchor of Prayer

Jeremiah 33:3 God says, “Call unto Me and I will answer you and show you great and mighty things which you do not know.”

B. The Anchor of Fellowship

Hebrews 10:25 Living Bible says, “Let us not neglect our church meetings, as some people do, but encourage and warn each other especially now that the day of His coming back again is drawing near.”

C. The Anchor of Faithfulness

Galatians 6:9 says, “Let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we will reap if we do not lose heart.”

Sometimes when people are going through a storm, they will quit being faithful to the ministry that God has called them to.

2 Corinthians 8:1-4 Contemporary English Version says, 1“We want you to know that the churches in Macedonia have shown others how kind God is. 2Although they were going through hard times and were very poor, they were glad to give generously. 3They gave as much as they could afford, and even more, simply because they wanted to. 4They even asked and begged us to let them have the joy of giving their money for God’s people.”

The Macedonian Christians were going through an incredible storm but they still remained faithful in their giving. In fact, the text tells us that they “begged” Paul to allow them the opportunity to give.

Giving to the Lord is not a financial decision. Giving to the Lord is a spiritual decision.

1 Kings 17:8-12 says, 8“The word of the Lord came to Elijah, saying, 9‘Go to Zarephath and dwell there. I have commanded a widow there to provide for you.’ 10So he went to Zarephath. When he came to the gate of the city, a widow was there gathering sticks and he called to her and said, “‘Please bring me a little water in a cup that I may drink.’ 11As she was going to get it, he called to her and said, ‘Please bring me a morsel of bread in your hand.’ 12She said, ‘As the Lord your God lives, I do not have bread, only a handful of flour in a bin, and a little oil in a jar. I am gathering a couple of sticks that I may go in and prepare it for myself and my son, that we may eat it, and die.’”

This widow woman was in the most difficult storm of her entire life. She only had enough flour and oil to bake one final meal for she and her son and she knew that death was imminent.

1 Kings 17:13-16 says, 13“Elijah said to her, ‘Do not fear. Go and do as you have said but make me a small cake first and bring it to me. Afterward make some for yourself and your son. 14For thus says the Lord God of Israel: ‘The bin of flour shall not be used up, nor shall the jar of oil run dry, until the day the Lord sends rain on the earth.’ 15So she did according to the word of Elijah and she and he and her household ate for many days. 16The bin of flour was not used up nor did the jar of oil run dry according to the word of the Lord which He spoke by Elijah.”

Because this widow woman was willing to trust and obey, God miraculously caused her flour and oil to never run out!

Less than 5% of American Christians tithe. If every church member were to tithe, there would be an additional $131 billion available for God’s work (Julia Duin in “The Philanthropy Roundtable”).

On the way home from church one morning, a mother said, “The music was awful this morning.” The father said, “The sermon was too long.” Their 7 year old daughter said, “But you’ve got to admit, it was a pretty good show for a dollar.”

But money is not the only place we stop being faithful during a storm. The widow didn’t just give Elijah the flour and oil, she used her ability to cook the biscuit…

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