Summary: God has called us all to make a difference in the lives of others. We are to do it in three different ways as a solider, an athlete, and farmer.
Let’s Build The Church—Wanting To Make A Difference
We are in part 3 of our series, “Let’s Build The Church,” and today we are going to look at Wanting To Make A Difference. Imagine if you were at your funeral, and it came to testimony time. I got up and I said, “ Now I want you to limit your testimony to two minutes and if there is anybody here today who can testify to a difference that the deceased has made in your life, come up and share it.”
If the first person got up and said, “The deceased worked with me on the job for 5 years and I can’t think of one thing he did that made a difference.” If the second person got up and said, “we were in school together for six years and I remember the time when, no that was somebody else. I can’t think of one thing he did that made a difference.” If the third person got up and said, “I went to church with the deceased for 10 years, and let me tell you, Praise God, “the one difference I know he made, is that I had planned to go fishing today, but this funeral caused me to cancel my fishing. I sure hope this is a short service.” Let me ask you, how would you be feeling about the life you had lived.
The truth is we can’t live without making a difference but the difference you make can be of a negative nature. There is a man in the bible who was a king, and the last thing said about him was 2 Chronicles 21:20 (NIV) 20 Jehoram was thirty-two years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem eight years. He passed away, to no one's regret, and was buried in the City of David, but not in the tombs of the kings.
I don’t care who you are, where you live, or how much money you make, there is something inside of you that cries out for a certain level of importance. When you leave this world, you want somebody to say that your life counted. You want somebody to testify that you made a positive difference with your life. Nobody wants to leave behind the testimony, that was a complete waste of life.
Even those of you who are not living for God, you still want your life to count. The reason being, you are created in the image of God, and because God is important, you are important. Unfortunately, many of us look for importance in the wrong ways and in the wrong places. We deceive ourselves into thinking, if I just get what I want, I’m going to be happy. Most of us have not found that to be true, because everything we get comes with a price and the tag is hidden, because of sin. But even sin still cannot stop us from wanting to make a difference.
In our OT reading Ahimaaz was a skilled runner long distance runner. After the King’s army had won a battle, he wanted to run and tell the king the good news. He wanted to use his skill as runner to make a difference. But the commander of the army, Joab, told Ahimaaz that he was not the one to run and tell the news, because some of the news was bad.
Joab chose a black man and told him to run and tell the news. I guess the Kenyans and Ethiopians were winning marathons back then as well. The black man took off and headed to the king with the news. Ahimaaz asked Joab again to please let him run. Joab said, “why do you want to run. You’re not going to get paid anything for the job.” Ahimaaz said, “That doesn’t matter, I want to run.” In other words, “he wanted to make a difference.” He took off, and because he knew a short cut, he outran the first guy to get to the king.
We are in this series Let’s Build the Church. The kind of church we are thinking about building for New Life At Calvary is a church that is going to involve itself in the life of the community more than we have in the past. In our Lay Pastor’s meeting we were thinking of ways of how Sunday mornings will be ministry opportunities to go from the sanctuary to the community doing projects to serve those in the community. We want to begin to understand what Jesus meant when Jesus said, “just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many.” We are going to choose to make a difference by looking for ways to serve.