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Summary: Illustrated sermon of making room for Jesus

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EMPTY YOUR BUCKET

PAUL DUKE

Ephesians Chapter 5 and Galatians Chapter 5

Before I begin. I want to tell you about a two special guests we have here today. My mom and dad came to visit. Now just to let you know. My parents are the ones you all can blame for my nuttiness. See, my mom was my English teacher. My dad was my principal. Which, you know, is bad enough. But also, my dad was my preacher. So you ask, “Why am I so warped?” They are the reasons. =-)

Now before I begin, I want to warn you. This is an in your face, no holds barred sermon. I want to challenge you. I want to make you feel a little uncomfortable. But I also want you to listen. Not just with your ears. But with your heart. I ask that you honestly open your heart for the next 20 minutes and listen.

I want to begin with a quick prayer.

PRAY

Have you ever driven you car so far on a single tank of gas that you eventually ran out of gas? I am thinking of a few names right now that I could see that happening to. I know you all like when I get up here and tell stories on my self. So let me tell you of a time when I ran of out gas. Now I am talking literally. Not spiritually, not metaphorically. I really ran out of gas. Now, in my defense. It was not my fault. It was Kyle Hilgendorf’s fault. Last year we took you all on a trip to a camp near Cincinnati. Now Kyle had to take a business trip that next week. And since I drove my truck to help with taking a bunch of supplies, he asked me to just take him to the Cincinnati airport when we left. No biggie. It was a bit out of the way, but I also had to go and pick up my boy from my parents.

So I drop Kyle off, no problem. I am on my way to pick up Caleb. Now I really don’t know where I am going. I have not gone to their house from Cincinnati. So I am in some rural towns and areas. Don’t know if you have ever seen the movie, “Deliverance”, but this area reminded me of it. I am thinking, I am going to die here. I noticed that my tank was about ¼ full. So I have plenty of gas to get me atleast 75 miles. Well, I am on some country road for about 3 miles and look down and notice my gas needle has disappeared. And then it gets worse.

My truck dies. I am able to turn into some farm house. So I go up to the front door to see about bumming some gas. No one is home. Now what do I do?

Being the shy person I am I head toward the farmer’s barn. I opened the door and there it is. A gas can. I tell God thanks and grab it. But it is empty. But there in the corner is another one. It is full. So I grab it and head to my truck. I put about a gallon in. Put the can back and put a couple of bucks under it. Luckily, that gallon got me to a gas station where I could fill up my truck. I now know my truck takes just over 20 gallons to completely fill it up.

Why did I tell you that story? To laugh at myself? Yes. But to show you in order for me to get a complete fill up, I had to have a completely empty tank.

READ Ephesians 5:15-21

We have a dishwasher at home. Dishwashers are an amazing item. You put your dirty, cruddy dishes in, push a button, wait twenty minutes and wholla, clean dishes. There is only one problem with dishwashers. You have to unload them. You can only put so many dishes in there before it gets so full you can’t put any more in there. We need to empty the clean dishes. Because it is wrong to have the clean dishes in the washer, right?


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