Summary: We must be faithful at all costs.
FOTS - Faithfulness
November 26, 2008 Wednesday Service
Immanuel Baptist Church, Wagoner, OK
Message Point: We must be faithful at all costs.
Focus Passage: Galatians 5:22-23
Supplemental Passage: Daniel 3: 16-18
Introduction: Norman Geisler, as a child, went to a DVBS because he was invited by some neighbor children. He went back to the same church for Sunday School classes for 400 Sundays. Each week he was faithfully picked up by a bus driver. Week after week he attended church, but never made a commitment to Christ. Finally, during his senior year in High School, after being picked up for church over 400 times, he did commit his life to Christ. What if that bus driver had given up on Geisler at 395? What if the bus driver had said, "This kid is going nowhere spiritually, why waste any more time on him?"
Fred Craddock, in an address to ministers, caught the practical implications of consecration. "To give my life for Christ appears glorious," he said. "To pour myself out for others. . . to pay the ultimate price of martyrdom -- I’ll do it. I’m ready, Lord, to go out in a blaze of glory. "We think giving our all to the Lord is like taking $l,000 bill and laying it on the table-- ’Here’s my life, Lord. I’m giving it all.’ But the reality for most of us is that he sends us to the bank and has us cash in the $l,000 for quarters. We go through life putting out 25 cents here and 50 cents there. Listen to the neighbor kid’s troubles instead of saying, ’Get lost.’ Go to a committee meeting. Give a cup of water to a shaky old man in a nursing home. Usually giving our life to Christ isn’t glorious. It’s done in all those little acts of love, 25 cents at a time. It would be easy to go out in a flash of glory; it’s harder to live the Christian life little by little over the long haul."
a. "To follow through with a commitment regardless of difficulty." That’s a good definition.
b. "Faithfulness is love hanging on." It is love saying, "I will not quit. There may be misunderstandings, there may be disappointments, there may be discouragements, but I will not quit."
II. A Demonstration of Faithfulness
a. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego
III. Develop Faithfulness
a. Realize temptations will come
b. Rely on the Holy Spirit for strength