Summary: Uses the illustration of three chairs to force students to consider their lifestyle, and where they are in their spiritual journey. Student Ministry PowerPoint format.
This presentation was designed to be presented to a senior high audience using Microsoft PowerPoint If you would like the actual PowerPoint presentation, just send me an email. Click on the “View all sermons by Robert Fox” link at the top of this page, then click on the “contact” link in the green box at the top of that page.
This is the third in a series of three lessons on “priorities”. The central illustration of three chairs came from a presentation by John Maxwell at the Promise Keeper’s rally in Dallas several years back.
Slide Graphic – Symphony Orchestra
Slide Text - I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth.
This Sunday is the last in a series of three discussions on the topic of “Priorities”. Two weeks ago we talked about Fasting – setting aside the unimportant things that are taking so much of your attention and using the opportunity to focus on God instead – readjusting your priorities.
Last week we studied the passage in Ephesians chapters 4 and 5 where Paul gives his “wake up call” to the church. You are spiritually alive – not dead, but you are asleep. You say God is a priority in your life, but you aren’t living that out. There is no apparent difference between you and spiritually dead people. When Jesus raised Lazarus from the grave he told him to take off the grave clothes – look alive! We don’t want to be a sleepwalking student ministry. Wake yourself up spiritually and deliberately follow your priorities – don’t just go through the motions.
Today we’re talking about priorities again. But, as usual, I’m going to get there by a round-about way. Stay with me…
How many of you are in the school band? What instrument? What seat? For those of you who are not involved in a band, let me explain how this works. For each instrument – clarinet, flute, trumpet, violin – there are several different pieces of music – several different parts. A composer of a symphony may write, for example, three violin parts. These parts, in the music, will be labeled “first violin”, “second violin”, and “third violin.” The violin players in the symphony orchestra will be divided up. The best players will be assigned to play “first violin” – the most difficult of the violin parts. The violinists who have not achieved the same level of skill will be assigned the less difficult “second violin” part, and so on. Do you get the picture? Same thing with the flute section, the clarinet section, and so on. There are a few instruments, like the oboe, English horn, Harp and timpani, that seldom have more than one player, who gets to call himself “first oboe,” or whatever, even if there is no second.
So now the violinists are divided up into first, second, and third violin parts. But there may still be several of your best violinists all playing the same first violin sheet music. Musicians being very class conscious – there must be a way of saying who is the very best first violin. The way this is done is by assigning chairs. The very best violinist is assigned “first violin, first chair.” The next best is still playing the same first violin music, but he is known as “first violin, second chair” to show that he is not quite the player that the first violin, first chair is. The best of the people playing the less difficult second violin part is known as “second violin, first chair” and so on.
This is the picture you need in your heads to understand the discussion today. Three chairs. First chair, second chair, third chair.
Video clip – “Maestro” This is a 3-minute clip of a guy who plays classical music with an array of bicycle horns strapped to his body. It’s available free on the internet in many locations. I would suggest using the search engine at AltaVista: http://www.altavista.com/video/results?q=maestro&mvf=mpeg&mvd=all
You guys got to hear some of my kind of music last week – classical music and opera. Before we get into the discussion, let’s continue that tradition by taking a quick look at a video of an amazing classical musician I found recently. This guy is definitely first-chair!
[Second Trumpet – First Chair]
Slide graphics – scanned pictures of me in my high-school band. You would no doubt want to use your own pictures here. Either of your band or the band at the school where your students attend.
My father was in the Army Corps of Engineers, and I grew up in very strict military schools. My father retired from the military in the summer after my ninth grade year. We moved back to Arkansas, where both my parents were from, and I entered the public school system for the first time going into the 10th grade in Sheridan.