Summary: I preached this sermon to get the congregation to renew their dedication to serving the Lord. To help them realize it takes the whole congregation if we want the church to grow, not just one person. A lot of this sermon is personal therefore the intro a
“Don’t Limit God With Man’s Limitations”
Theme: Our Service to God
Text: Romans: 12:1-21
Prop: Every Christian has the responsibility of service
Trans: Don’t let the mind of man dictate our service to God.
INTRO: I’ve been preaching at this church now for going on 10 months and I think I’m finally getting comfortable with being here. With preaching every Sunday, teaching Sunday school and doing all the other things that have to be done. Yet I must admit that coming up with a sermon each and every week is a difficult thing to do at times. It’s has taken me a while and some might say a long time to get comfortable.
In the last church I ministered at it took me around 4 to 5 months to get comfortable and to really start ministering. When I went to serve in that church I didn’t have to move, it was only 15 miles from my house. I did have to go from my home church and go to that church obviously, but it wasn’t a really big thing by a lot of people’s standards. However it took me a while, it was my first ministry and I really didn’t know what to do so it took me about 4 to 5 months to really get going. Once that happened the ministry I was doing really got going as well. The youth group started to grow, Maria and I got to know the kids on a more personal level and we really began building relationships.
Those relationships are ones that still continue today. We have kids from that youth group still call us up just to talk with us. They e-mail almost every week, and they have told us time and time again that they miss us and that they really want us to come back. To be honest with you we have been tempted to go back. Only a few months after we were here one of the elders there called us up and asked us to come back as well. It was and has been very tempting to do just that.
But I think about what it took here. I think about all the people that I talked with and about how they encouraged me to come to Leonard. They said that this church would be perfect for me. Many told me that I was not going to school to be a youth minister that I was going to be a preaching minister and this is what I needed. I thought to myself, yes that’s true and if I’m ever going to get better at preaching that I needed to get to a church where I could preach each and every Sunday.
Well I’m here and I have done just that, I’ve preached each and every Sunday. It’s been hard at times, but the hardest thing has been adjusting to living here. Not the ministry so much, but that we left all of our friends behind, we left our home, the kids left their school and we had to start all over in those respects.
Well, I started out by saying that I have been here for going on 10 months now and that I think I’m finally getting comfortable here. I know it has taken me a while and I feel that I need to apologize for that, I am sorry. But as I said with my last ministry when I got comfortable is when it really started to take off. Within the time I was at my last ministry the church had around 25 additions with around half of those being by baptism. That was only in a span of 10 months.
Is that what I expect here? No! Is that what you expect here? No! Is that what the professors at Central Christian College expect here? No! And is that what others around this area expect here? No! Do you know why I can say that? It’s because that is what I have heard ever since I came here. Don’t expect that church to grow! Don’t expect that there will be a lot of additions. Don’t expect it to grow by leaps and bounds. You might get additions from the children in the families that already go there, but not more.
When I first came here I accepted that. I said ok then all I have to do is maintain this church. Preach on Sunday, teach Sunday school, call on those who are sick and in the hospitals, do funerals and just do all those things that a maintaining minister does.
Do you know what I’ve found out? I found out that I don’t want to be that maintaining minister. I’ve found that if I’m that maintaining minister, I’m not happy. I’ve found that I have to be more. I found God nudging me, kicking me and sometimes slapping me. Do you know what He is saying? He’s saying, Mark, why have you listens to men? Why have given yourself to man’s limits? The reason your not happy is because you have allowed yourself to live by and do ministry by mans standards and not Mine. Live and do ministry by My standards, do things according to My expectations and I will lead you and give you a vision for the church. He has done just that.