Sermons

Summary: Sixth in series. Becoming like Christ involves change. This sermon is how to deal with that change.

"In Christ"

"Becoming A People Of Change"

Introduction: Valerie getting bigger, smarter

remembering her as an infant growing up

different stages of her life

I. Change Is Inevitable.

"To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven" Ecclesiastes 3:1

Changes is innovation and technology

How many came to church in a covered wagon?

Changes is medicine

thought

music

entertainment

clothes/ fashion

Life is changing so fast that what is "hot" today is "old" tomorrow.

*Investment commercial

Guy driving down the road proud of his new computer until he sees a sign that shows the next model is now out.

The problem with change is not change itself.

We were designed for change.

maturity-vs-childish

Rather,

II. The Problem With Change Is How We React.

Are you a turtle or a rabbit?

2 popular extremes for handling change

1. Turtle

"That’s not how we do it!"

"We’ve never done it that way before!"

"If it’s always worked, why change it?"

Lives in the land of nostalgia

"the good ole days"

The more things change the harder they dig in.

On the information superhighway their peddling bicycles.

They look to the future, but it seems so overwhelming they retreat to the safety and familiarity of the past.

On the other hand is the:

2. Rabbit

Naively accepting change for change’s sake.

Jump from fad to fad-no questions asked.

Always living in the future; disregarding the past.

It’s "hip", "cool", "nifty", "gnarly", "happening", "sway"

If its old get rid of it.

3rd Group

neither turtle, nor rabbit.

neither resist change, nor blindly leap into it.

they evaluate with a mixed sense of curiosity and skepticism

Change is all around us. And, as the people of God we are certainly not exempt from its force. "Perhaps one of the most significant questions the people of God face in the midst of rapidly changing times is, "How are we to face the challenge of a changing world?"

[Http://www.preachersmagazine.com. "Embodying Our Identity: Between Heritage And Hope." July 8, 2001.]

Should we be angry?

afraid?

worry?

fully embrace it?

What is our response to changing times?

Are we a turtle, rabbit, or a blended balance?

This morning we look at the leadership of Joshua and how the people of God were faced with change.

"After the death of Moses the servant of the LORD, the LORD said to Joshua the son of Nun, Moses’ minister, "Moses my servant is dead; now therefore arise, go over this Jordan, you and all this people, into the land which I am giving to them, to the people of Israel"...Then Joshua commanded the officers of the people, "Pass through the camp, and command the people, ‘Prepare your provisions; for within three days you are to pass over this Jordan, to go in to take possession of the land which the LORD your God gives you to possess.’"" Joshua 1:1-2,10-11

Picture/ setting

-people of God wandered for 80 years.

-accustomed to nomadic life.

-their spiritual battles lay in going back to the gods of Egypt, or trusting in the God who redeemed them.

Now they faced the challenges of a change in lifestyle.

-instead of nomads they were to be farmers.

-instead of the gods of Egypt they now faced the fertility gods of Canaan.

-instead of the bronze age of Egypt they now faced the iron age of Canaan.

Changes which may not seem like much to us were a world of difference to them. And much like us they too were asking the question "How do we face the challenge of a changing world?"

Do we dig our heals in and continue as nomads wandering the countryside for all time? Do we retreat back to Egypt and live as slaves once again? Or, do we look to God as our confidence in these uncertain times?

III. God Should Be Our Guide In Times Of Change

"At the end of three days the officers went through the camp and commanded the people, "When you see the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God being carried by the Levitical priests, then you shall set out from your place and follow it, that you may know the way you shall go, for you have not passed this way before."...And Joshua said to the people, "Sanctify yourselves; for tomorrow the LORD will do wonders among you." And Joshua said to the priests, "Take up the ark of the covenant, and pass on before the people." And they took up the ark of the covenant, and went before the people." Joshua 3:2-4a, 5-6

Change is inevitable.

The problem with change is how we respond.

Howard Hendricks notes there are three stages people go through when confronted with change:

1. Resistance to change

2. Tolerant to change

3. Embrace the change

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