3-Week Series: Double Blessing

Sermons

Summary: Asaph was an anointed Levite worship leader who wrote 12 psalms and was appointed by David as a leader at the Temple. Yet this anointed man of God suffered a time of discouragement. But by remembering God's deeds and wonders he was restored to fresh power.

FROM TIRED TO INSPIRED

Ps. 77

INTRODUCTION

A. HUMOR: NEW YEARS JOKES

1. A New Year's resolution is something that goes in one year and out the other.

2. In 2020, may your neighbors respect you, troubles neglect you, angels protect you, and heaven accept you.

3. May all your troubles last as long as your New Year resolutions.

4. Remember you can reset your resolutions on January 14th (Orthodox New Year) and February 8th (Chinese New Year). After that, even I can't help you.

5. Keep the smile, Leave the tear, Retain the laugh, Leave the pain, Think of joy, Forget the fear. Be joyous, cause its a New Year.

6. New Year’s Eve is when the Mayor drops the ball in New York while Congress is dropping the ball in Washington.

7. “Every New Year I resolve to lose 20 pounds, and I do. The problem is that I gain 30.” - Melanie White

B. THESIS

1. Christmas is meant to be a time of good cheer, relaxation, and celebration, but 4 out of 5 people say it’s one of the most stressful times of the year.

2. Why? Think of the shopping for gifts, the holiday parties to plan, the decorations to put up, the meals to cook, the Christmas cards to address & send, getting & decorating the tree, fighting the Christmas traffic, straining for the money to buy the gifts, planning travel to family, cleaning the house, facing relatives you don’t get along with, getting paper & wrapping the gifts, and cooking the most important meal of the year! All with a deadline.

3. In the article, “For Women, it’s the Most Stressful Time of the Year” by Brigid Schulte, she explains why it’s so difficult for women. They feel it’s their responsibility to recreate the same Christmas atmosphere of sights, smells, food, and family togetherness that they experienced as a child at Christmas.

4. Women feel they must be the “family-makers.” They must create the rituals and traditions that help the family form into a family unit. That’s why they feel compelled to recreate the kind of Christmas they remember as a child, even though their mom didn’t work at a full-time job. That’s tough to do!

5. That explains some of why we’re so tired. But we have a new year coming: 2020, so we need to go “From Tired to Inspired” – inspired to enter a new year and make it the best year it can be for Christ. We’re going to look at a guy named Asaph and see how he went “From Tired to Inspired.”

I. ASAPH BECAME EXHAUSTED & DISCOURAGED

A. TEXT

1 “I cried out to God for help; I cried out to God to hear me. 2 When I was in distress, I sought the Lord; at night I stretched out untiring hands, and I would not be comforted. 3 I remembered you, God, and I groaned; I meditated, and my spirit grew faint….” Ps. 77:1-3

B. SOURCE OF ASAPH’S TROUBLES

1. Psalm 77 was written by Asaph. He’s identified as the writer of 12 Psalms and was a Levite. He was commissioned by David to be in charge of singing at the First Temple (1 Chron. 6:39). So Asaph was both close to God and recognized by Israel as having an anointing to minister to God in worship. He inspired others!

2. Yet here he is in Psalm 77 telling us of a time he felt exhausted, discouraged, and like God was a million miles away. In east Texas vernacular, he had to “reach up to feel bottom.”

3. Asaph not only had normal life-troubles, he was also beset with discouragement and fears. He went to God in diligent prayer, crying to God with all his heart, but He seemed to get no relief by seeking God. Then he tried to prop up his faith by arguing with himself using thoughts from God’s Word. But here again, he seemed to get no relief.

C. LUCINDA NORMAN’S CHRISTMAS EXPERIENCE

1. Lucinda Norman wrote an article for Lookout Magazine (12/5/96) in which she described her shopping experience in a busy mall.

2. People had been pushing, elbowing, and cutting in front of her all day. Hardly able to take it anymore, she says, “During a 10-minute special (a 35% off discount), a woman grabbed a lace tablecloth out of my hands. I looked her straight in the eye and grunted, “Mine!” and yanked it back. I won.”

3. Entering a mall restaurant, she flagged down a server and said, “I need hot tea, now!” The server said, “I’m not your server; wait your turn!” She said, “I’ve been waiting my turn all day; I need some tea!” The server walked away.

4. A few minutes later, a friendly young man came to their table, smiling, and said, “I’m Rob, your waiter.” After he took their order, he helped the rude waitress with her tray. One of Lucinda’s companions said, “Did you notice he’s wearing a ring that spells ‘Jesus?’”

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