Summary: Some aspects of how the Lord builds great souls. . . Building and Battling.
Building and Battling
Luke 14:27-33 KJV And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple.  For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it?  Lest haply, after he hath laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all that behold it begin to mock him,  Saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish.  Or what king, going to make war against another king, sitteth not down first, and consulteth whether he be able with ten thousand to meet him that cometh against him with twenty thousand?  Or else, while the other is yet a great way off, he sendeth an ambassage, and desireth conditions of peace.  So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple.
I. INTRODUCTION -- HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
-Every man who gives a whim about his financial responsibilities will always be concerned about the cost. Any man who is intent on making any kind of purchase will be concerned about the price tags to greatness.
• Spirituality demands consecration.
• Character demands principles founded by the Word of God.
• Revival demands consecration.
• Righteousness demands focus.
One of the past gold medalists on the U.S. Swim Team gave this account as to the cost of the medal that he had won. He had swam a total of 45,000 miles in the last four years. From now until the 2000 Olympics, he will have swam an equivalent of two times across the Pacific Ocean.
-All of that is for a corruptible crown. If such is the case, how much more should the Church be willing to expend it’s energies, it’s prayers, it’s finances, it’s talents toward an incorruptible crown?
-One of the greatest distractions that the devil will attempt to place on the church in this hour is weariness, discouragement, and distraction. If these three areas can break in on this fellowship of believers, the quest for revival is always hindered?
-Not only will the quest for revival be hindered but the cost, the price tag, is obscured!!! There are conditional and unconditional promises of God.
• The unconditional promises are those that God is bound to fulfill despite the attitudes and actions of men (such as end-time revival).
• The conditional promises of God (such as personal revival and personal growth) come to rest only on those who are willing to give, to pay, to reach, to strive, and to alter everything about their spiritual life as they reach for God.
2 Chronicles 7:14 KJV If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
-If you will. . . God Will!!!!
-How much will it cost for God to begin building in your life? That is answered in the Word of God.
A. Growing Up and Paying the Price
When I was growing up, I began to have a desire to wear the “right” clothes and the “right” shoes. The “right” clothes were Levi’s jeans and Izod or Fox shirts. The “right” shoes were Nike’s Leather Cortez. But I just didn’t have the “right” parents. So I was informed that should I began to wear such items that I would have to pay for them with my own money. I was in the eighth grade and through a man who used to go to church in Dothan, I found my way quite humbly to a tomato field just east of town. It was there that I was paid 0 .75 cents for each five gallon bucket of tomatoes that I picked. It took twenty buckets to get $15.00. So I labored picking tomatoes until I graduated up to working at the Little Farmer’s Market which was a produce/grocery/gas station on Fortner Street. It was there that I would start at 6:30 A.M. and work until 5:30 P.M. each day, Monday through Saturday for $15.00 a day. I carried shingles for a couple of roofers for several days (which almost killed me!!!). Paying the price!!!
Having saved my money, my parents took me to Wilson’s Men Shop which at the time had the cheapest prices on Levi’s in Dothan. I remember quite well being able to make my purchases their. From that time on, I pretty much bought all of my school clothes. It was in those days that I understood that anything worth having is going to require some effort. There was heat to endure, there were times that I knew that others were out having a great time, there times that I wanted to sleep in, but there was also a determination in knowing that a price must be paid.