Summary: Sermon looks at the unique way the Holy Spirit SHAPES us for ministry - through our gifts, heart, abilities, personality, experiences. (Acknowledgement - work of Rick Warren in this area)
o In his autobiography Billy Martin, a former New York Yankees baseball team coach, tells the story when he and his friend Mickey Mantle were going hunting
o They stopped at a farm where Mickey Mantle happened to know the farmer, asking permission to hunt on his land
o The farmer no problem, you can hunt on my land
o But first I have a request
o I have a mule in my barn who is rather old and ornery so he needs to be put down
o Would you mind putting him down for me?
o Mickey agreed but while going to the truck to get Billy he decided to play a trick on him
o Billy asked Mickey ‘well what did the farmer say. Can we hunt on his land?
o Mickey shook his head and said ‘the farmer said we cannot hunt on his land. I cannot believe it. I am so ticked off I have half a mind to go out and shoot something.’
o So Mickey jumped out of the truck and raced into the barn and shot the old mule that the farmer asked to have put down
o While he was standing there in the barn surveying what he had done he heard two shots in rapid succession
o He goes racing out to find Billy Martin standing there with smoke still coming out of his barrel
o Billy winks at Mickey and says ‘That will teach him; I got a couple of his cows too.’
o They say that is a true story; sometimes I wonder
o But this is a true story
o It is true that life does not turn out the way many of us expect
o Many people are disillusioned with life
o The reason is some never know what their purpose or life mission is
o Even in the business world most companies have a mission
o For Pepsi Cola at least originally it was ‘beat coke’, simple and clear
o What is your mission for your life, your family?
o Did you know we have a church vision and mission?
o It is on the back of the bulletin. Have your prayed about it?
o When I attend a local church I look at their vision and conclude that if that is the vision for the church it should also be the vision for my family
o So we open our home for those purposes
o Let me ask you this. ‘If the vision of the church is to reach to unbelievers then why wouldn’t our families have the same purpose?’
o When we live that way were living at the level of significance.
o Something is driving your life
o Some are driven by guilt; others resentment and anger; others fear; others materialism; still others the need for approval.
o Ask yourself this question
o What would my friends and family say is the driving force of my life?
o My life is not complicated
o I know what I am here for; to care for you, pray for you, and help you become all that God intends for your life
o Knowing my purpose simplifies my life; I am not striving for anything else
o If it doesn’t fit my purpose then I don’t do it
o Just this week I reviewed some of the material in “The Purpose Driven Life.”
o Pastor Rick Warren says people live their lives on one of three levels (see Purpose Driven Life)
1. The survival level
o That is where most people are
o They put in time at work and live for weekends
o They just go through the motions
o They live without Christ at the centre of their lives, that spirit filled life that we have been talking about
o Often their number one goal is live for leisure time
o Watch a lot of TV and movies
o Go to Winnipeg on their week off
o King Solomon finished his life like that
o He was a depressing guy to be around (listen to this (Ecc. 2:11)
o It is all useless; don’t even try, hopeless
o Gee if I had to be around that guy I would shrivel up and die
o I will tell you why he was like that
o God was not central in his life
o He had 700 wives, all the riches he could want, and still lived like a fatalist
o Solomon, who was depressed, wrote ‘There is nothing new under the sun.” Sounds like resignation.
o His goals were not centred on eternal things
o Living for retirement is not an eternal goal
o You may find out your still unfulfilled
o Isaiah wrote ‘I have spent my strength in vain and for nothing (Is. 49:4 NIV)