Summary: About allowing God to work in us so we can be equipped to do His will.
Moving Forward for the Kingdom
May 17, 2009
Me: I was working on what I thought was going to be the message for today, which was kind of a “state of the church” message like I did last year.
But as the weekend drew nearer, I became convinced that God wanted a different kind of message, and I felt that what He wanted wasn’t just another message like what I’ve been doing.
I think God wanted me to simply share a bit of His heart about what He wants for this church.
So even last night I was begging God, “What word do you have for us?”
And I was searching the Scriptures looking for what I thought God wanted to communicate to us, and I believe He gave me something that I’ll share in a bit.
We: One of the things that excites me about this church is that we are moving forward on so many fronts.
I look back and see what has happened, the great things God has done in us and through us, I see the great people who are part of this family, and I just have to stop in awe and wonder.
God is moving in us and through us, which has been my prayer since the first time I stepped into this building.
I believe God loves this church and has huge plans for it, and I hope I get to be here for more of what He’s doing.
And I pray that we, as a body will glorify Christ more and more as we move forward, particularly over this next year.
God: Here is the passage that I believe the Lord laid on my heart last night for today:
Hebrews 13:20-21(p. 854) –
20 May the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, 21 equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
* We need to be equipped to do HIS will.
This is more than just “having church.”
What is His will? To restore relationships with Him through Christ.
To help people find forgiveness of sins through Jesus so they can go to heaven when they die, and so they can find healing, wholeness, significance, security, meaning, and purpose until then as they live for Christ.
The will of Christ is for us to bring as many people as we can to Christ and keep as many people as possible from hell.
The will of God is to help the family of God grow deeper in their relationship with Christ so they can not only live for Him themselves but help others live for Him as well.
6 So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in him, 7 rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.
The will of Christ for the church is to be filled with unity in our love for Christ. We come together because we not only believe in Him but we believe in His purpose for the church – outlined by these banners on the wall.
And we have unity because we believe that Jesus is the King and owner of the church, not us.
That’s not to say we won’t disagree at times. But even in our disagreements, we need to be loving each other and Christ, wanting only to serve Him and bring Him honor, not to grab power for ourselves and our agendas.
I’m good friends with a number of pastors in this area from different denominations and different theological perspectives on different issues.
But you know what? We love each other and we work together.
Why? Because we have unity on the things that are essential. We can disagree about other things like whether or not a person can forfeit their salvation, or whether or not you need to speak in tongues to show that you’re filled with the Spirit, or which English Bible version is the best.
Those are all secondary issues compared to the essential issues of Christ and the Scriptures as the Word of God.
And here’s something else from this part of the verse that I just love:
He will give us everything we need to do His good will.
I love that.
He says, “Do my will – and here are the tools to do it with.”
He’s given us everything we need: People, resources, but most of all He’s give us His Word and His Holy Spirit to help us put it to work in our lives.