Summary: This message is part three of a series I started in 2008. This message examines how we walk during our "mean times" while also reflecting on the past seven years.
In The Mean Time – Part 3
Scriptures: Heb. 11:7-17; Psa. 37:23; 119:133; Phil. 3:14
In 2008 I did a two part series I titled “In the Mean Time.” This message will be part three of that series although it’s being delivered seven years later. In 2008 I talked about some of the things we do when we are in transition from one purpose to the next; one situation to the next; and/or one place in our lives to the next. In those messages I told you that what we do in the mean time directly impacts how we go through something. The outcome of most of our situations are actually decided or influenced by what we do “in the mean time.” When I delivered the first two messages in 2008, my father was dying and my company was going through a layoff and I was in limbo as to its effect on my position. In 2008 I used that example of the upcoming layoff at my job in my message. During that time we were notified in August so we all had five months to prepare for the “what if.” Many people were stressed, angry, and immediately began looking for other opportunities. When I delivered those two sermons, I was in my “mean time” unaware of what would happen. What I did know was that regardless of the decision that my company made, God would take care of me. So while the decisions that were being made were out of my control, I filled my time seeking God’s wisdom and His kingdom. I did that then and continue to do so now because the Word promises me that if I do this, everything that I need will be provided to me. My job is to seek Him; His job is to take care of the rest – those things I need in this life. When I stop trying to do His job and start doing my job (seeking Him and His righteousness), things tend to fall into place. Having this understanding allowed me to sleep at night because it was not about me, it was about God.
So here we are seven years later and I am delivering part three of that series. My father is in Jesus’ presence and I am no longer with the company I was with in 2008. Things have also changed for this Church. For example, in 2008 we were meeting in a school. Today, we own this Church outright – it’s paid in full. In 2008 many of us were working somewhere else and we had more members than we do now because people had jobs here. In those “mean times we lost members as they moved to find new job opportunities.” We did not envision that in 2008, yet it still happened. I am sharing this with you so you understand that while we may have our plan it’s just that, our plan. But when our plan gets interrupted and we go through those transitions that I will refer to as “in the mean time” it is those times when we have to make a choice. Take a moment and think about some of the “mean times” you have gone through since 2008 and where you are today versus where you were in 2008.
This morning I want you to consider what you are doing “in the mean time” when there is uncertainty and you do not know what will happen. What are you doing “in the mean time” as you are going through? And finally, what are you doing “in the mean time” when you have come through? Just to be clear, we all have “mean times”, those times between where we are now and where we are striving to get to. Consider where you are now spiritually versus where God is trying to take you. Do you believe that God has ordered your steps? I will come back to this question, but first let’s spend a few minutes describing this “mean time.”