Summary: In all of your life, what you’re trying to do is move out of immaturity and move into this level of maturity where you understand the enjoyment God created you to have.
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How to Get the Most Out of Life
Today, we’re talking about how to enjoy life and it’s okay to eat in church. So you can go ahead, literally, you can do that. You can eat yours. If your neighbor’s not eating theirs, you can eat theirs. And I don’t know how many of you like chocolate. Just by a show of hands, like chocolate? All right, how many of you really like chocolate? Show of hands. How many of you are like, I-would-eat-your-piece-right-now-if-I-could-have-it, like chocolate? All right, good. So we got some chocoholics in here. I know that sometimes you don’t like chocolate, but go ahead and feel free to enjoy your little piece here as today, we are talking about how to get the most of out of life. And I hope you enjoy this. It’s kind of just enough. Like, you know I’m a pretty good guy, this is a pretty guy and so this is kind of like just enough. I mean, I almost wish this was—were a little bigger. How many of you would say, I wish this piece of chocolate were a little bit bigger? Yeah, I wish it was a little bigger. Because you know, there’s kind of this sense that when you enjoy something that it’s just enough. Have you ever had an experience like that? You go have a really good meal and you say it’s, just enough. Oh, it was just the right amount of food. How about this? Have you ever gone to have something to eat and you say it’s too much? Oh man, I just—I just had too much. I mean, I just felt stuffed. Well, this idea of living your life with just the right amount of enjoyment is what I want to talk about today.
You see, there is a—there is like a level of enjoyment in your life. There is a range of enjoyment but if you get out of that range, you can have too little enjoyment in life but you can actually get to the point where you have too much enjoyment in life. I don’t know if this is enough for you or not. Maybe you need a little bit more to get into your maximum enjoyment range but you know, you could also have, well, maybe too much. You know one of the marks of maturity is knowing exactly how much to enjoy. How do you enjoy? I mean, what’s the balance between this and this? And you know, immature people, they tend to go too far. As a matter of fact, I have a little bulldog at home and he lives in our kitchen most of the time and he would literally eat himself sick if he could. But you know, and then once he gets sick, he’ll just keep on eating. I mean, that’s just the way dogs do this kind of thing. But that’s the way it works. And sometimes, you have to learn how to bring that balance and bring some maturity in your life to what you want to enjoy. Now here’s the deal. On the side of excessive enjoyment, philosophically, that’s called hedonism. Have you ever heard of that word, hedonism? Now, a lot of you are familiar with the Club Med hedonism. You’ve probably been down there some time or another. I’m not talking about that. I’m talking about the philosophical idea of hedonism. And many people think that is a modern invention. That maybe, in our post modern day, we invented hedonism. But actually, this goes way back in time. As a matter of fact, the Bible actually talks about some folks who were involved in hedonism.
If you find your outline, you’ll see the very first verse in your outline from Isaiah, Chapter 22, the prophet, Isaiah is talking to some folks who had bought into this secular hedonism philosophy. Now, I want you to get that term, secular hedonism. It is when you enjoy something to excess. In other words, you go too far in your enjoyment of something. And we’ll talk about that in a second but notice what the verse says. It says let’s eat, drink and be merry, you say. What’s the difference? For tomorrow, we die. Did you know that phrase was actually in the Bible? You’ve probably heard that all of your life? Eat, drink and be merry. For tomorrow, we die. I thought Shakespeare said that. I had no idea that this was actually in the scripture. But this was actually—the people in those days, they were practicing what might best be described as secular hedonism, rather. And it is when you take pleasure too far. Now, you are wired to experience pleasure. When God created you, he created you to experience pleasure. You have nerve endings in your body that bring pleasure to your body. You have taste buds on your tongue. You have receptacles in your eyes that bring pleasure to your body. You’re created to enjoy pleasure. But if you go too far, if you go over into this area that I’m calling secular hedonism, you get outside of the range of pleasure and you actually get into the area of discomfort. Have you ever done something so long that it becomes discomfort? I mean, if you had to eat this 5 lb chocolate bar, at first, the first few bites may taste really pleasurable but eventually, your taste buds would become numb and you would move out of enjoyment and you would move into discomfort. Maybe you’ve had something else like that in life. As a matter of fact, even when it comes to your senses, with your eyes, something that you may enjoy for a little while, if you stay on that for too long, it moves into the area of discomfort. So it is. You see, God created you to live in this realm of enjoyment where you receive maximum pleasure but you don’t move into the area of discomfort. Now, I call this Christian hedonism. And God says that if you live within his range of enjoyment, that you should be able to enjoy all the great things in life. For example, God says that you can enjoy food, just enjoy that in moderation. And your body is created so that you just—if you enjoy most anything, you can enjoy any type of food you want, in moderation. As long as you stay in that range. God says that you can enjoy sex. What’s the range of sex? God wants you to have maximum enjoyment in that area inside of marriage. That’s the range he created it. So in all of your life, what you’re trying to do is move out of immaturity and move into this level of maturity where you understand the enjoyment God created you to have. And that’s what I want to talk about today.