Summary: Facing a problem or challenge? Here is God’s 5 step strategy for working through it!
"God…I Have a Problem"
January 27, 2002
A) Find current illustration of a problem that people are familiar with.
1) From the illustration make the connection that we all have problems to deal with
B) Recap (See notes from Sermon titled Change is Constant)
1) Jesus ascended leaving Disciples staring up into the sky
2) Ushering in Phase 2 of God’s Plan
3) Trained Equipped and Encouraged
C) Today we will look at transitional time
1) How the Disciples spent that time
2) What we can learn from it today
A) 1st Church Board Meeting (Play it up with humor)
All kidding aside, the Apostles had a situation to deal with…they had a problem.
B) There is a strategy found here that we can apply to our lives today when we find ourselves saying, “God…I have a problem.”
III THE 5 STEP PROBLEM SOLVING STRATEGY
A) STEP ONE: PRAY (vs. 12-14)
1) Prayer meeting
a) Searching, preparing, changing, Encouragement, Perspective
2) Direct Link
a) Can’t get online without connection (for those less Internet savvy, your phone doesn’t work unless the line is connected to the phone jack)
3) Brings perspective to our situation…our life
B) STEP TWO: PREPARE by Searching the Scriptures (vs. 16-20)
1) Helped Disciples understand the Judas problem
a) Had to be weighing on their hearts
b) How could or why did this happen
c) Prophecy had to be fulfilled
2) Brings knowledge and understanding
3) Gives Insight as to God’s blueprint for our lives
4) Supplies Confidence
C) STEP THREE: PLAN (vs. 21-22)
1) The effect of prayer and the confidence found in Scripture led to a plan
a) "We need a replacement"
2) Strategy to the plan
a) Specific criteria
3) They resourced the plan
a) In this case people
b) Today could be money, equipment, people, etc.
D) STEP FOUR: PRAY some more (vs. 24-25)
1) The term saturated in prayer comes to mind
2) Direction given
a) Initial prayer
3) Plan and strategy developed
4) Pray for confirmation of direction and God’s purpose to be accomplished
5) KEY: Be willing to allow God to change your plan!
a) Sometimes our plans are not in line with God’s. We need to be flexible.
E) STEP FIVE: PUT plan into action (vs. 26)
1) Disciples Cast Lots
a) Not gambling prayed and left results in God’s hands
b) Today we cast Ballots
2) Put outcome in God’s hands
3) What ever the plan, it is useless unless we pput it into action.
ILLUSTRATION: I have every faith in my calculator’s ability to solve any math problem. However, no matter how strong my faith is, I will never get the answer until I put my faith into action and press the buttons on the calculator. (Presenters note: If you feel comfortabe using props in your presentation, bring a calculator in with you. When you use this illustration, tak about about the calculator’s ability to solve the probem, and your faith in its abiity to do so. Then set the calculator down somwhere, walk away from it and "wait" for it to solve the problem. Play this up with humor and it makes a great comic relief break but at the same time it allows you to drive home the point.)