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Summary: God wants to use us beyond our ability.

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STEWARDSHIP

Part 2-Because I Can or Because I’m Called

January 13, 2008

Pastor Brian Matherlee

Video introduction from “Stewardship Ministries of the Wesleyan Church” entitled, “Gifts”.

There are two ways to serve:

1. Out of the gifts I know I have

2. Out of the call of God beyond my gifts

Key point:

God wants to use us beyond our ability.

Today, God wants us to understand His calling:

A. God Calls Us to Service

1. He saved us for that reason

i. Revelation 5:9-10, “because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation. You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God”.

ii.

2. He equips us for that reason

i. 2 Timothy 3:16-17, “All scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

ii. God is looking for us to trust him and start moving. He’ll give you what you need when you need it. It’s like McGyver…there was always a roll of duct tape around when he needed it.

3. He fills us for that reason

i. Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.”

ii. John 15:4, “Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.”

iii. Many things keep us from remaining in Christ:

• Spiritual laziness, greed, sin, etc.

B. God’s Call is Sometimes Resisted

1. Across the centuries, many others have made similar statements when faced with the call of God: “I am too young.” “I am too old.” “I am too poor.” “I come from the wrong background.” “I am too shy.” “I don’t have the talent for this.” “I don’t have anything to offer.”

2. Many such statements rise out of feelings of inferiority and poor self-images. Maxwell Maltz said he believed 95 percent of people have some feelings of inferiority. Why do we feel inadequate and ill-prepared for the work God calls us to do? (based on some thoughts from Stan Toler)

i. Past failures

• How many times have we thought, “I tried that before and failed. There’s no point in trying again”? In that regard, I think about James Irwin, a pilot who was injured in a terrible plane crash. He experienced painful suffering, a loss of memory, and various other problems. But Irwin refused to let that keep him down. He applied to the corps of astronauts and was rejected. He tried again and was rejected; tried again, rejected. Tried again . . . and became the eighth man to set foot on the moon. He refused to allow his past failures to limit him.

• There are many reasons for failure. Perhaps we weren’t preparing. Perhaps we lost our focus. Peter was successful to the call of the Lord to walk on water until he lost his focus.

ii. Faulty Theology

• Many people think that God gives a couple of gifts and then we are to serve him only in that capacity. That isn’t how God usually works.

• Sometimes he does. He wants us to be like granny in the video and use the talents we already know about.


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