Summary: Go to God with your problems but go to God for MORE than your problems. Believe God’s Word and not your worries.
There is not a person here this morning that has not, at some point, faced some kind of difficulty, challenge or adversity where the choices were few and the solutions were difficult. Sometimes those adversities can be handled with hard work, sometimes it takes creativity. Then sometimes neither hard work nor creativity will get us through – it takes an act of God.
Booker T. Washington was a man who believed in hard work. Born a plantation slave, as a child he carried the books of his master’s children to school. But Washington loved to learn. He wasn’t allowed to own books or to attend places of higher learning, so he became a self-educated man.
Ultimately, through hard work, he became a wealthy landowner, the founder of an institution, an advisor to two United States Presidents (Theodore Roosevelt and William Howard Taft) and a man who influenced many others.
Without a doubt, he is one of the most significant African Americans in the history of the United States. He was a hardworking man who found that, to get through life’s adversities, it sometimes takes hard work.
Then there are other times where it takes more than just hard work – it takes creativity. I like the story Dale Galloway told in his book, “Dream a New Dream.” It involved a man who owned a little store back East. In his store, he sold some groceries, pharmaceuticals and notion needs. He had a good business until Urban Renewal moved in and threatened his business.
As bulldozers came in and took out the old buildings, on his right in their place was a beautiful grocery store, and on the left the bulldozers knocked down homes and a discount store was built where people could buy more for less. The man went home discouraged knowing that there was no way his business would be seen in the shadow of those two buildings.
Then he got an idea…he would spend his savings on a sign. It was to be as big as his store. He would have the finest company in town make it. The sign had only three words on it, but those three words revolutionized his business! The bright bold sign read: MAIN ENTRANCE HERE!!!
Sometimes it takes hard work, sometimes it takes creativity. And then sometimes it takes an act of God. That’s where the man in John 4:43-54 is: no amount of money would solve his problem, no amount of hard work or creativity would heal his dying son – he needed an act of God. As we look at him this morning, we learn some lessons on faith.
John 4:43-54, After the two days he departed for Galilee. (For Jesus Himself had testified that a prophet has no honor in his own hometown.) So when he came to Galilee, the Galileans welcomed him, having seen all that he had done in Jerusalem at the feast. For they too had gone to the feast. So he came again to Cana in Galilee, where he had made the water wine. And at Capernaum there was an official whose son was ill. When this man heard that Jesus had come from Judea to Galilee, he went to him and asked him to come down and heal his son, for he was at the point of death. So Jesus said to him, “Unless you see signs and wonders you will not believe.” The official said to him, “Sir, come down before my child dies.” Jesus said to him, “Go; your son will live.” The man believed the word that Jesus spoke to him and went on his way. As he was going down, his servants met him and told him that his son was recovering. So he asked them the hour when he began to get better, and they said to him, “Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him.” The father knew that was the hour when Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.” And he himself believed, and all his household. This was now the second sign that Jesus did when he had come from Judea to Galilee.
1st Go to God with your problems, but go to God for MORE than your problems
So many people only want God as problem solver: “God if You just will get me out of this problem.” “God if You just will heal this person.” “God if You will get me that job or that relationship.” And here is the good news – God answers prayer! But if who God is means less to you than what He can do for you, then you have missed the message entirely.
John 4:43-44, After the two days he departed for Galilee. (For Jesus himself had testified that a prophet has no honor in his own hometown.)