Summary: Celebration of the past year at our Annual Picnic
This morning we are gathered here at Confederate Park to fellowship together and rejoice on what God has been doing over the past year. A gathering such as an annual picnic is more than just a time to eat and play games, but I believe it is a time to celebrate and give glory to the Father!
As we have time today, please be sure that you take a few moments to thank the Lord for the gifts and blessings you have received in your life, and remember what God has done for our church over the past year.
Read 1 John 1:6-7
Point 1 – Do not lie to yourself!
John is writing to us in two of the most straight to the point verses I have ever had the opportunity to study. He is showing us both sides of Christian living (if you are to be honest with yourself), and something that I want to take some time today to look at. Perhaps we can leave here with a new direction in our life – and a new revelation about things we need to differently in our lives.
John says in verse 6 that we ought to be walking in light!
Example of walking around the house and being tripped on something simple …
When you walk in darkness you are likely to stumble, fall, or worse hurt yourself.
Yet, John is writing here that we should not walk in the darkness (turn on the light) and claim to walk in the light! You cannot see in the dark! So, turn the light on!!
Do you see the juxtaposition that John is warning us to not follow? John is saying that if we “claim” (only you and God know the real truth) to walk in the truth of Jesus Christ, yet we continue to sin than we are lying! More than that, John calls us out and plainly states we in fact, DO NOT live in the truth!
Look at your own life for a minute. No one will ever be perfect, but is there something that God has been telling you to get rid of that you refuse to let go? Perhaps something that God has continued to deal with you on and yet you refuse to lay it down at the cross? Why is that?
What is so appealing about holding onto sin that we can not put it down?
I believe if anything is clear today – it ought to be the words of one man who has gone before us clearly demonstrating that living for Christ is worth it!
Acts 20:24 Paul writes and says, “However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace.”
All Paul wanted to do was finish the race, and work for Jesus during whatever time he was given on this Earth – it was his pleasure to live & serve – It should be ours!
In 1 John, we see John telling us the importance of knowing what we are rooted in – knowing how we live makes a difference – and to be honest (get right) with yourself!
So, let’s see where it leads if we are living by Jesus’ example.
Point 2 – Can you celebrate fellowship?
Look back to 1 John 1:7 (re-read) - Let’s take this verse apart …
If we walk in the light: If we live our lives in a way that is upright (not snotty or prideful) – but in a way that shows a change in our hearts …
As He is in the light: Jesus is the light! Matthew 5:14 says, “You are the light of the world.” So, because we are the light (our lives model Jesus), I believe there ought to be signs that demonstrate where Jesus has shown through us …
We HAVE fellowship with one another: I believe this is a caution to people who are pretending to be Christians. You can fellowship (talk, laugh, etc.), but without the commonality of Jesus Christ within you there is no real fellowship at a spiritual level. Simply put … If we will do “this” – Then we will have “that”!
And the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin: This is simple, basic, Christian truth. Today, if you have never received Jesus Christ I want to give you the no-nonsense way to do it: It is as simple as our ABCs – Accept you’re a sinner, Believe Jesus died for you, and Confess that you need Him as Savior.
John is encouraging us to follow the footsteps of Jesus, and not to deceive ourselves as many have done over time – but truly live and rejoice in Jesus!