Sermons

Summary: Part 8. The test for our love of God is our obedience.

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As we conclude our series “Knowing and Experiencing God,” it has been my prayer that each and every one of us would experience God and the work of his Holy Spirit in our life in a very real, personal, and powerful way. We would move into a closer relationship with our loving heavenly Father. A relationship where we are attentive to God, where we listen to God’s voice, and desire to do his will, not our own. I believe that if we are truly attentive to God, we will discover he is inviting us to join him in his ongoing work in lives of people around us. In other words we have a part to play in God’s plan. Then each of us has a choice to make, a decision, will we obey God and make the adjustments in our life (or allow God to make the adjustments) Last week we talked about adjustments in our beliefs, relationship, thinking, behavior, priorities and commitments, finances, location, goals, dreams, and desires. In order to join God sometimes major adjustments may be necessary.

Illustration

This past week I received an email from Dale, one of those forwarded stories, but this one I feel fit perfectly with what we’ve been talking about.

A young man had been to Wednesday Night Bible Study. The Pastor had shared about listening to God and obeying the Lord’s voice. The young man couldn’t help but wonder, ’Does God still speak to people?’

After service, he went out with some friends for coffee and pie and they discussed the message. Several different ones talked about how God had led them in different ways. It was about ten o’clock when the young man started driving home. Sitting in his car, he just began to pray, ’God...If you still speak to people, speak to me. I will listen. I will do my best to obey.’ As he drove down the main street of his town, he had the strangest thought to stop and buy a gallon of milk. He shook his head and said out loud, ’God is that you?’ He didn’t get a reply and started on toward home. But again came the thought, buy a gallon of milk.

’Okay, God, in case that is you, I will buy the milk.’ It didn’t seem like too hard a test of obedience. He could always use the milk. He stopped and purchased the gallon of milk and started off toward home. As he passed Seventh Street he had a crazy thought that he should turn down the street, but he drove on past the intersection. Again, he felt that he should turn down Seventh Street. So at the next intersection, he turned back and headed down Seventh Street.

Half jokingly, he said out loud, ’Okay, God, I will.’

He drove several blocks, when suddenly, he felt like he should stop. He pulled over to the curb and looked around. He was in a semi- commercial area of town. It wasn’t the best but it wasn’t the worst of neighborhoods either. The businesses were closed and most of the houses looked dark like the people were already in bed.

Again, he sensed something, ’Go and give the milk to the people in the house across the street.’ The young man looked at the house. It was dark and it looked like the people were either gone or they were already asleep. He started to open the door and then sat back in the car seat.

’Lord, this is insane. Those people are asleep and if I wake them up, they are going to be mad and I will look stupid.’ Again, he felt like he should go and give the milk.

Finally, he opened the door, ’Okay God, if this is you, I will go to the door and I will give them the milk. If you want me to look like a crazy person, okay. I want to be obedient. I guess that will count for something, but if they don’t answer right away, I am out of here.’

He walked across the street and rang the bell. He could hear some noise inside. A man’s voice yelled out, ’Who is it? What do you want?’ Then the door opened before the young man could get away. The man was standing there in his jeans and T-shirt. He looked like he just got out of bed. He had a strange look on his face and he didn’t seem too happy to have some stranger standing on his doorstep. ’What is it?’

The young man thrust out the gallon of milk, ’Here, I brought this to you.’ The man took the milk and rushed down a hallway. Then from down the hall came a woman carrying the milk toward the kitchen. The man was following her holding a baby. The baby was crying. The man had tears streaming down his face. The man began speaking and half crying, ’We were just praying. We had some big bills this month and we ran out of money. We didn’t have any milk for our baby. I was just praying and asking God to show me how to get some milk.’

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