Sermons

Summary: What would it look like if you took yourself off of cruise control and began to live life pedal to the metal serving with all your heart? It would be living Wide Open.

Living Wide Open

Acts 13:36

Recently sharing our church story with two church leaders from another local church. They asked "how did you raise all that money?" I never really thought of it that way. I didn’t know we had a choice of whether or not to raise the money we needed to do what God told us to do.

Another pastor was asked “How do you have the gall to ask people who are already busy at work or in the home to get involved as volunteers with the church? Don’t you feel guilty?”

The reason I got involved in church work was to change the world. When I ask people to help I am asking them to change the world with me. To become a History Maker a World Changer.

Ask most lifetime church volunteers why they do what they do, you will probably hear about a serving moment that sealed their decision. Here is what one volunteer said, “I felt the God of heaven and earth use me and I discovered that there’s nothing in the world like it. It beats anything else I’ve ever experienced.”

from Bill Hybel’s Living Beyond Myself

Acts 13:36

And David served the purposes of God in his generation.

Are you serving the purposes of God for your generation?

Participant vs. spectator

We have to keep raising the bar. This is a place to feel comfortable hearing the word, but it should be uncomfortable if you aren’t responding to it.

Steve Sjogren commented,

“We love, serve, and care for others because that is normal behavior for people who are filled with God’s Spirit. We are Christians. Christ was the ultimate servant. We can’t help but serve because the Spirit of the Servant has filled our hearts. When we serve, we are just being who we naturally are.

Philippians 2:5-11 speaks of the unity of the church that comes through humility.

“He made himself nothing; he took the humble position of a slave and appeared in human form.”

Being a slave doesn’t sound very appealing, but there are benefits.

2002 study of elderly uncovered that volunteering may be more important than exercise when it comes to living longer.

Allan Luks

Coined the term “helper’s high” to describe the emotional well-being of volunteers. Emory University scientists have discovered a scientific reason for helper’s high…Choosing to cooperate with others “activated an area of the brain rich in dopamine, the chemical that produces the pleasurable sensation activated by certain drugs and other addictive behaviors.”

I am not sure if I have ever been accused of helping someone get high on serving the Lord, but I guess that wouldn’t be a bad thing after all.

1 Cor. 16:15, we read of a family with this type of addiction. "...ye know the house of Stephanas, that it is the first fruits of Achaia...and that they have addicted themselves to the ministry of the saints"

To addict oneself means "to arrange in an orderly manner." A drug addict arranges his life around drugs, an alcoholic around alcohol, a servant of Christ around serving.

I want to highlight some of the ministry opportunities available at our church right this moment.

Right now, we need…

•A leader who is passionate about reaching out to young families via the children’s ministry or by planning events as an outreach to young families.

•A creative organizer to help us program/organize our Sunday worship.

•Hospitality director to organize the food table for Sunday worship.

•Committed praise team members who play instruments or sing. We need people to help with video, dance, drama, etc.

•Someone to organize our follow up contact with people who have visited our church.

•A recruiter to help us identify ministry opportunities/trainings and deploy people for ministry.

•We want to set up a website where the people in our congregation can offer their services to the community.

•A pastoral type leader who can build on the momentum of the small group ministry and take it to the next level by training small group leaders, recruiting interns for each group and ensuring multiplication of groups.

•An evangelistic organizer who can mobilize our church for quarterly outreach bridge events that raise the awareness level of our church within the community.

•A treasurer to support our pastor with legal/financial issues.

•A communications specialist to help us take advantage of the multitude of free advertising opportunities here in Marlborough, MA.

•A webpastor/master to help us connect our members online and use the web as a tool of evangelism and connection for those who are looking for a church home.

•A more stable, affordable and functional location for ministry.

•A few churches to partner with us for prayer, encouragement, people, and finances.

•A prayer ministry because without prayer we can do nothing.

Just jump in. Check out a various areas of ministry to see if it is something you like.

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