Summary: Considering the Choices God has made for us out of His great Love.
HE CHOSE THE NAILS - I Peter 1:3-5
Feb. 25, 2001
Preached by Brent W. Zastrow, Saybrook Christian Church - Saybrook, Il.
I remember reading about a guy who stopped in the grocery store on the way
home from work to pick up a couple of items for his wife. He wandered around aimlessly
for a while searching out the needed groceries. As is often the case in the grocery store,
he kept passing this same shopper in almost every aisle. It was another father trying to
shop with a totally uncooperative three year old boy in the cart.
The first time they passed, the three year old was asking over and over for a candy bar.
Our observer couldn’t hear the entire conversation. He just heard Dad say, “Now, Billy,
this won’t take long.” As they passed in the next aisle, the three year old’s pleas had
increased several octaves. Now Dad was quietly saying, “Billy, just calm down. We will
be done in a minute.”
When they passed near the dairy case, the kid was screaming uncontrollably. Dad was still
keeping his cool. In a very low voice he was saying, “Billy, settle down. We are almost
out of here.” The Dad and his son reached the check out counter just ahead of our
observer. He still gave no evidence of loosing control. The boy was screaming and
kicking. Dad was very calming saying over and over, “Billy, we will be in the car in just a
minute and then everything will be OK.”
The bystander was impressed beyond words. After paying for his groceries, he
hurried to catch up with this amazing example of patience and self-control just in time to
hear him say again, “Billy, we’re done. It’s going to be OK.” He tapped the patient father
on the shoulder and said, “Sir, I couldn’t help but watch how you handled little Billy. You
Dad replied, “You don’t get it, do you?” I’m Billy!”
Life is about choices isn’t it. Mark Twain said, “I have discovered that people are
about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” I believe he is right. And you are here
today in a frame of mind that you have chosen. O, we suffer through trials and problems
caused outside of our control, that’s true enough, but how we react to them, how they
affect us, that is a matter of our own choice.
Today I want to begin a series of sermons that points us toward Ressurrection
Sunday. This series is about some choices Jesus made. The choice to obey his Father’s
will completely, the choice to go to the cross and be our perfect sacrifice and also the
choice to experience all the things that led up to the cross -- the beatings, the ridicule, the
betrayal, the refusal of the drink of wine on the cross and even the nails. He chose the
I hope that these sermons will give us an even greater appreciation for what our
Lord has done for us. I hope it will help humble us knowing that someone has loved us
that much. Most of all I hope it will deepen our commitment and trust in Him.
Have you ever thought about all the choices the Heavenly Father has made for
you? Creating us and then giving us a free will, though he knew we would use it to
choose against him. Would you make a choice like that? I wouldn’t. Sending his
prophets to warn us about the dangers that lay ahead, again knowing they would be
rejected and some put to death. Continuing to receive His people back even though timte
after time they would wander away. Sending His only Son as our savior, a son that would
love with only perfect love, only to see him cruelly treated and hung on a cross between
two thieves. Then sending his Holy Spirit to live within us and be there as a guide to us,
just to see us do our best to snuff him out. Why has God made these choices? Becasue of
the great love he has for us. We are his pride and joy!
I have some pictures at home. They are pictures of me and my children and
grandchildren. In them you can find me with funny hats on, making silly faces or just
doing things that swank debonare gentlemen such as myself don’t always do, like putting
out fires with vacumn cleaner hoses, riding imaginary horses or being the engine of the
plane that flies Jordyn around the room. Why do we do those things without a second
thought as to its appearance? We love our children and grandchildre. They are our pride
and joy. And dear friends, God feels the same way about you.