Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: Allowing God to develop His vision for us in our lives... Part two a two part series on Vision

Neh. 1:10-2:6

Living With My Eyes Wide Open Part 2

Pastor Glenn Newton 3-21-04

Last week I started a conversation with you about what it means to live with you eyes wide open... We talked about how God has given each of us a great gift, a vision for our life... a reason for living..... and this vision that God has given you is unique to you... you can’t be replaced.... His plan was specifically designed to fit you. How many of you know that God has a specific purpose for your life? He does.. and you can find out what it is as you draw close to God in your relationship with Him.

This week I want to talk to you about how to bring this vision to reality in your life.

The first principle that I want to share with you that will help you bring this vision to reality in your life is this: To fulfill your vision, you must have a clear guiding purpose for your life... In other words... your vision needs to be clear.

When you know and understand what you were born to accomplish, that is purpose. When you can see it in your mind by faith and begin to imagine it, that is vision.

We all need focus, if you don’t have a focus in your life you will just drift along. Remember what Jesus said in Luke 2:49, “I must be about my Father’s business”. There were alot of things Jesus could have been involved in, but He identified a specific life work that was His own and that motivated everything he did.

It’s kind of like if you came up and asked me.... “Hey, let’s go out for lunch...., where do you want to go....” and I answered.... “That sounds great, lets go anywhere...” You say, “What time do you want to meet?” And I answer, “It doesn’t matter, anytime..” And we walk away.... do you think we will ever meet at the same destination? We need a clear vision, or we end up living our life with just a vague idea of what’s going on.

This morning we are going to look at Nehemiah, and through his life we can see the difference between a job verses a Vision.

Read Neh.1:11-2:6

NE 1:8 "Remember the instruction you gave your servant Moses, saying, `If you are unfaithful, I will scatter you among the nations, 9 but if you return to me and obey my commands, then even if your exiled people are at the farthest horizon, I will gather them from there and bring them to the place I have chosen as a dwelling for my Name.’

NE 1:10 "They are your servants and your people, whom you redeemed by your great strength and your mighty hand. 11 O Lord, let your ear be attentive to the prayer of this your servant and to the prayer of your servants who delight in revering your name. Give your servant success today by granting him favor in the presence of this man."

I was cupbearer to the king.

NE 2:1 In the month of Nisan in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes, when wine was brought for him, I took the wine and gave it to the king. I had not been sad in his presence before; 2 so the king asked me, "Why does your face look so sad when you are not ill? This can be nothing but sadness of heart."

I was very much afraid, 3 but I said to the king, "May the king live forever! Why should my face not look sad when the city where my fathers are buried lies in ruins, and its gates have been destroyed by fire?"

NE 2:4 The king said to me, "What is it you want?"

Then I prayed to the God of heaven, 5 and I answered the king, "If it pleases the king and if your servant has found favor in his sight, let him send me to the city in Judah where my fathers are buried so that I can rebuild it."

NE 2:6 Then the king, with the queen sitting beside him, asked me, "How long will your journey take, and when will you get back?" It pleased the king to send me; so I set a time.

Nehemiah had a job as the cupbearer to Artaxerxes, the king of Persia. This seems to have been an important position that may have included both serving wine to the king and his royal guests and tasting the king’s wine to make sure it wasn’t poisoned. Yet being a cupbearer meant much more than this. Nehemiah was in a top position in the king’s court and was a highly regarded, trusted, and influential advisor to the king.

As prestigious as Nehemiah’s occupation was, it was simply a job for him because his mind was occupied with something else. Nehemiah was a descendant of one of the large number of Jews who had been carried into captivity by the Babylonians. The Babylonians were subsequently defeated by the Persians, and that is why Nehemiah was serving a Persian king.

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