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Summary: People know about God, listen to people talk about God, and even claim to be Christian. Yet many still feel far from God. A relationship with God is like drinking coffee. How do we move from doing to being?

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Get a Life

4/21/02 AM

By Brad Dyrness

You know you have had too much coffee when …

1. You answer the door before people knock.

2. You speed walk in your sleep.

3. You grind your coffee beans in your mouth.

4. You have to watch videos in fast-forward.

5. You go to the AA Meetings just to get the free coffee.

6. You can take a picture of yourself from ten feet away without using the timer.

7. You lick your coffeepot clean.

8. Your eyes stay open when you sneeze.

9. You chew on other people’s fingernails.

10. The nurse needs a scientific calculator to take your pulse.

At our house coffee means more than a drink or, as my doctor puts it, a drug.

Coffee is a time to chat!

Fresh-brewed life… a book about being close to God, yourself and others. With wit and wisdom, you are led on a journey of awakenings: first to God, second to yourself, and finally to others. It’s a girl book, but…

I started drinking coffee in college, not to stay awake, but to hang out with Keith. We built our relationship around a cup of coffee.

We had a special place to drink it, it took time to brew, and we lingered over it.

This is true with Deb. Our coffee time is as much about relationship as it is coffee.

Now I am not suggesting we all drink coffee, but we do need to figure out how to lived a life that has a fresh-brewed sense about it.

In United States, polls taken in 2000 suggest that:

86.2% identify themselves as Christians.

Even those who term themselves “non-religious” find it hard to escape a Supreme Being. Paradoxically, 60% of those who claim to have no religion also say that they believe in God and pray to Him often.

At 44%, church attendance in the U.S. is higher than in any other western industrialized country, except Ireland and Italy.

People know about God, listen to people talk about God, and even claim to be Christian. Yet many still feel far from God.

That same poll stated that among United States’ African-Americans, religious interest is particularly high. 94% of those surveyed said that a close, personal relationship with God was their ultimate goal, more important than good health or a comfortable living.

A close personal relationship with God…in a word - “Intimacy” – What is the opposite of intimacy? Superficiality.

People will tell us all kinds of ways to get past a superficial relationship with God - prayer, fasting, going to church, reading the Bible… But too often they melt into doing, not being, and only amount to what Pete told us last week - $3.00 of God.

RELIGION LEAVES US FEELING FLAT.

Have you ever heard a prayer like this: Father, we thank you for this chance to bring our request before You. We thank You for this day and we ask that You will…

What often times we really are feeling is: Father (I call you Father even though at times I don’t even know You), we thank You for this chance to bring our request before You (like it will do a lot of good; You’re going to do what You want anyway). We thank You for this day (although it’s raining again; how much rain do You think we need?) and we ask that You will… (here’s the part I want You to hear, but often wonder if You even do).

Maybe that’s too much honesty, but often we feel closer to the guy we had coffee with this past week than we do with the God who invited us to know Him.

If that’s not true for you, then pray for those for whom it is true!

But if you find yourself, at times, going through the motions and feeling distant from God in spite of your love for Him and His dramatic action in your life, then pray that God will speak to you today!

In a book called Soul Salsa, Leonard Sweet challenges his readers to get a life.

Get a (Godly) Life!

This isn’t another sermon about prayer or giving or doing anything else – it’s a message about being close to God.

Barry Baker, the President and COO of USA Networks, said what maybe many of us feel. “I wasn’t a human being; I was a human doing.”

We often describe ourselves by what we do - plumber, teacher, salesman, mother, preacher…

Life has got to be more than doing!

 How do we know when we have made the transition from doing to being?

When our doing is a natural response of our being!

When my daughter was born, I didn’t have a clue what to do. I had babysat some, but found that being a parent is totally different. After 6-8 weeks I began to naturally remember I was a dad. That cry in the night was no longer a surprise and, when it came, I knew what to do. (Roll over and tell Deb her kid was crying)

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