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Summary: This message focuses on a belief held by many that they are not qualified to serve God - it helps us see that we can all be used if we will just make ourselves available!

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We’ve been discusses various diseases that inflict the church and this morning I want to look at another one... It’s a disease called, “I’m just not qualified.” Its not a disease that sounds that dangerous... But wow - it can really hinder God at work in your life and in the life of the church - and too look at it, I want to show you a person...

We all like stories right? Well, this is a great story - lets look at Mark 5:1-20

...pause after verse 9 and explain the story

...then after verse 20 - highlight the fact that this man wanted to stay with Jesus - he wanted to stay and learn, stay and grow - but Jesus said “Go and tell”

There is a a temptation that we all have that says, “I need more growth before I serve.” “If I just learn more, then God can really use me” ...the problem is that most of us, if we are not careful end up paralyzed and stunted...

The disciples faced this same temptation - In Matthew 17... (read Matt. 17: 1-7) The disciples had this amazing worship experience with Jesus, and they were ready to camp out there - to stay there... But Jesus said, Get up - let’s go...

For God to use you, I believe it takes two things...

First, it takes an encounter with God. Every changed life, every person that God has ever used - had an encounter... Now, not every encounter is dramatic. But isn’t it amazing how God speaks and we hear his voice and our hearts and lives are changed? ...for God to use you it begins with an encounter

Second, it takes your willingness to be available - it takes an openness on your part for God to use you.

But now listen - just as real as God is Satan, and his one job is to stop the process of God using you. if he can, he’ll try to stop you hearing from God...

Now as a child of God, you are his - Satan can’t take you out of God’s hand - but he can make you think that God doesn’t love you - he can highlight your sin and think that you are unworthy - he will try everything he can to stop you hearing from God...

He will also work on your availability. He will tell you - “Hey, I know God wants to use you - but you aren’t ready...” “You need another class” “Once you get trained, you will really be ready...then God can really use you” - so we wait...

You know, though, I think God has a different pattern in mind for us - I don’t think training is bad - but I think the pattern that God has for us is that as we encounter God - as he fills us up, we must pour ourselves out... and as we pour ourselves out - he fills us back up...

That’s what I read in Philippians 2:17-18 - Paul says, I pour my life out, and even if it leads to my death I will rejoice because my life is poured out for God - your service to God is the same... You are intended to pour out your life in service to God...

I have some props with me this morning - sort of a visual illustration of this... This large jug is God - we are this glass right here... That glass represents someone that God wants us to reach - to touch ...and get this it’s not us that can fill them up - its God, right? We can’t change lives, only God can...


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