Summary: Good byes are rarely easy, but are sometimes necessary.
1. OK, I ADMIT IT, I LOVE AIRPORTS!
2. There is just something about airports that I really enjoy.
a. NOW it’s not driving around in circles waiting for someone to come outside and meet me.
b. And it’s not waiting for hours because of plane delays
c. But there is that glimpse into the lives of people, and their emotions that makes a trip to the airport refreshing.
There’s THE EXCITED: Folks on vacation, get-aways, home holidays
THE NERVOUS about boarding the plane.
THE JOYFUL as their children are coming home for the holidays.
• I remember one time we were there & we met up with 2 adults from an adoption agency.
• They were blessed with the joy of delivering 2 little babies from China to their new families.
AND THERE ARE THE ANGRY ONES as they face plane delays, luggage that’s too heavy, and just having a bad day.
BUT the most difficult ones to watch are THE GOODBYES.
• It’s very easy to spot a GOODBYE. Tears. Red puffy eyes.
• Long embraces… empty stares out the window.
• AND Even though we don’t know exactly why they are saying goodbye, or for how long that goodbye will last…
• It’s really not that hard to see them all over the place.
GOOD BYES ARE rarely easy, but are sometimes necessary.
• This morning Paul comes to another end as he signs off this letter to a beloved church he knew for only 3 weeks.
• Greatly encouraged by the report Timothy brought back, Paul set out to ENCOURAGE THEM, COMFORT THEM, CONFRONT FALSE TEACHERS, and to SETTLE THEIR CONFUSED HEARTS.
• As he signs off he does 2 things that were common for him:
• He EXHORTS THEM with various commands.
• HE ENCOURAGES THEM, reminding them of God’s faithfulness.
I. (5:16-22) Final Exhortations
1. (16-18) The Will of God.
a. Knowing the will of God is one of the most important things that a Christian should know.
b. What would God have me to do here?
c. What is the heart of God toward that person?
d. Should I? Is it wise? Is it God’s will?
NOTE: Finding the will of God has become rather mystical these days. Hmmm… I just sort launch out on my own and try to find it.
• The will of God is treated as if it is out of our reach.
• No less than 23 times do we find that phrase in the New Testament countless other times is it revealed.
• It’s not far out there…
There was a farmer who was wrestling with the will of God for his life. He thought he had a call to ministry but wasn’t sure.
One day as he was sitting under a tree he looked up and a sky writer had placed these 3 letters in the sky, “G…P…C”
That was it. He ran into the house and told his wife, that it’s honey. I have my answer. God said to GO PREACH CHRIST.
And he did, leaving his family behind, he went out to preach Christ.
Several months later he returned home to find his family gone, his farm owned by someone else, and discouragement.
So he sat down to pray asking God what happened? God began to speak to him.
Why did you leave to preach Christ, God asked?
The letters, the letters in the sky God. They were your message to GO PREACH CHRIST.
No, God said, they didn’t mean GO PREACH Christ, they meant GO PLANT CORN!
• So Paul uses this phrase, this is the WILL OF GOD for you.
2. (16) REJOICE: Rejoice Always.
a. God wants us to rejoice always.
b. Yes tough times come. Yes issues arise.
c. But this world is missing joy and the only place it truly can be found is in the believer’s life, trusting a faithful God!
d. Joy is one thing the Gospel produces.
e. A life connected to Jesus produces an inward settled peace, not because of what’s going on around you but often in spite of what’s going on around you!
f. Let’s flip over to 2 Corinthians 6.3-10
3. (17) PRAYER: Pray without Ceasing.
a. God wants us to be people of prayer… without ceasing!
b. Literally God is calling us to be ‘constantly’ in prayer.
c. Not mindless repetition:
Matthew 6:6-7 "But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly. 7 "And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words.
d. But always praying for everything all the time.