Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: The Holy Spirit gave Abraham great hope, buoyant expectations and an upbeat attitude about God’s will for His life, regardless of the outward circumstances. The Bible says, "Abraham was waiting expectantly and confidently as he looked forward to the city

How the Holy Spirit Will Lead You as He Led Abraham

(Gen 15:1-20)


Into the shell of an oyster a tiny grain of sand finds

its way. "The intruder, though microscopic, is a source

of irritation and pain to the soft body of the oyster.

Unable to rid itself of the unwelcome pebble, the

oyster seeks to reduce the irritation by coating it

with layers of soft, iridescent mother-of-pearl

material from its own shell. Over time, the oyster

transforms a painful irritation into a beautiful pearl

of great value."

Most of us have "grains of sand" or annoying "pebbles"

that come into our life on a regular basis &133; many

of which can be very frustrating and even painful.

But every one of these annoyances gives us a chance to

grow. Some will require great patience, others tough

love. Some will require our turning the other cheek,

some confrontation, and some kindness and

understanding. For example, addicts need to be treated

with tough love. Bullies require us to maintain healthy

boundaries. Cheaters need to be confronted.

Manipulators need to be managed. Control freaks need

to be resisted, guilt throwers need to be challenged,

and toxic people may need to be avoided, and so on.

With God’s help, if we so choose, we can turn every

one of these annoying pebbles into pearls or we can

allow them to make us bitter. For it’s not what

happens to us that matters, but how we react to what

happens. What we do about it is what matters--and

that’s a choice we make either consciously or

unconsciously. And remember, "The bumps are what we

climb on."

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to see an

opportunity for growth in every annoying situation.

Give me the courage to be strong when needed, have

healthy boundaries where required, exercise tough love

where it is essential, and show kindness, patience and

understanding where these are needed. Help me to

always ask, ’What would Jesus do?’ And please give me

the courage to do just that. Thank you for hearing and

answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus’ name, amen."

1. The Holy Spirit led Abraham to become the father of many nations because He did not weaken, waver or stagger in faith. All of this was based on the promises given to Abram in Genesis 12:1-15. Paul wrote, "No unbelief or distrust made him waver (doubtingly question) concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong and was empowered by faith as he gave praise and glory to God." (Romans 4:20,21 - Amplified) Ask the Lord to help you to never waver, doubt or stagger with unbelief. Trust God to help you to grow strong in faith as Abraham did so you can look forward to a great harvest of righteousness.

2. The Holy Spirit gave Abraham the courage, determination and wisdom to know how to withstand the doubts of wife Sarah. Moses wrote, "Abraham and Sarah were well advanced in years and Sarah was past the age of childbearing. So Sarah laughed to herself as she thought, ‘After I am worn out and my master is old, will I now have this pleasure?’ Then the Lord said to Abraham, ‘Why did Sarah laugh and say, ‘Will I really have a child, now that I am old?’ Is anything too hard for the Lord?" (Gen. 18:11-14) Trust the Lord to help you to have the courage, determination and wisdom to know how to withstand the doubts of those who are closest to you.

3. The Holy Spirit gave Abraham full satisfaction despite all the daily uncertainties that he had to suffer with. Paul wrote, "Abraham was fully satisfied and assured that God was able and mighty to keep His word and to do what He had promised." (Rom. 4:21) Ask the Lord to help you gain a greater fulfillment through your confidence in the word of God to accomplish ALL that is promised.

4. The Holy Spirit gave Abraham a legacy that everyone respects for all of eternity. Paul wrote, "He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit." (Gal. 3:14) Trust the Lord to help your faith allow you to leave a great legacy for God’s greater glory.

5. The Holy Spirit gave Abraham the ability to bless all nations because of His great faith. Paul wrote, "Consider Abraham, ‘He believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness... The Scripture foresaw that God would justify the Gentiles by faith and announced the gospel in advance to Abraham: ‘All nations will be blessed through you.’" (Gal. 3:6-8) Ask the Lord to help you to expand your faith so that you can influence the spreading the gospel of Christ’s forgiveness to all 228 nations on the earth.

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