Summary: How we hinder the work of God in our lives
How To Sour A Celebration
I. DISTANCE CAN SOUR A CELEBRATION vs 25
Lisa always wants all her children in Church for her birthday.
Our Heavenly Father longs for His children to be united in fellowship
and celebrating together in His house.
When I say Distance can sour a Celebration, I'm not just talking
about the ones that aren't here anymore. In fact, there are people
that are sitting in church but they are about as distant as they can be.
The elder brother was right outside the house complaining about
everything that was going on and pouting about the attention his
brother was getting.
Some folks sit in a church pew week after week doing the same thing.
They don't contribute, they don't participate, they don't support others,
they don't encourage the brethren, they are not involved in fellowship
and they do not rejoice when prodigals return. As Dr. Adrian Rogers
said "they just sit soak and sour!"
Distance can sour a celebration, but what can cause a person to be distant?
Anger! That's why the older brother was distant. He was mad.
II. ANGER CAN SOUR A CELEBRATION vs 28
the difference between mad and being Irate
Verse 28 plainly states that the older brother was "angry". But instead
of getting over his anger, his anger got over him.
This man should be overjoyed that his brother was back. If his heart
had been in the right place he would have been in the house with
everybody else celebrating.
If I had been out in the fields working all day and came home to a
party, my reaction would have been, “Hey brother, it's good to
see you. I'm so glad you're home. Now where is that fatted calf
and the sweet tea?”
But his deep rooted anger caused him to whine, pout and complain.
In the church today, instead of rejoicing over what God is doing in the
lives of their brothers and sisters, a lot of so called Christians let
anger to got over on them and they whine, pout and complain.
Money is not spent the way they think is should be so ...they get mad!
Decisions are made that they disagree with and ...they get mad!
Someone else gets more attention than they do and ...they get mad!
If they are not asked to serve on a certain committee... they get mad!
No one calls them when they have a runny nose, so...they get mad
Another area of ministry receives more focus than their's they get mad
The Preacher preaches about a childish man in the bible that acts just
like they do and ...THEY GET MAD!!
Once anger creeps in, it has a tendency cause grown people to act like
two year olds. That was the case for the elder brother.
III. IMMATURITY CAN SOUR A CELEBRATION v28
(the older brother) would not go in: therefore came his father out, and intreated him.
The Bible dosen't tell us his name so to most he's "the older" brother.
But you would not know it by the way he was acting. In fact, he is
acting like a spoiled brat. He stayed outside and refused to join
the celebration. As a result the father had to leave the party to
go and deal with his brat of a son!
What should have been a wonderful day for the father is hampered by
the childish response of the older brother.
Talk about souring a celebration.
The same thing can happen in the church today.
There are childish people in church but God still saves lost souls.
There are immature people but God still forgives backsliders.
But the childishness of one person can have a terrible impact on a church.
Their immaturity can cause others to leave the church. And they can
keep others from coming to that specific church.
Childish folks also have a way of causing others to become malcontents.
And, their childish ways can prevent a true spirit of worship.
People notice them and they don't want nothing to do with the church.
And you can't blame them
The root cause of anger, distance and immaturity all to often turns out to
be PRIDE! Let's consider the fact that:
4. PRIDE CAN SOUR A CELEBRATION - v29
"All of these years I have served you." "I never transgressed your
commands." - Do you know what he is saying... "I didn't do these
things but my brother sure did!"
I can guarantee you, if there is somebody showing out in the church,
pride has got something, if not everything, to do with it.
People start comparing themselves to others. They lift themselves up
and tear others down. They are not focused on the Savior they are
focused on themselves. Somewhere along the way church became