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Summary: Deals with our need for Worship

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“PLANNED FOR GOD’S PLEASURE”

Sunday, May 2, 2004

We are unpacking God’s purposes for our lives. In order to get the most you can out of this series, I encourage you to read only one chapter a day. I know life is busy; I missed two times this week myself and I had to get caught up, but it is easier to digest the material. So often we just rush through when reading things and we don’t get out of it the things that we should. The best way to digest something is to just think of one chapter at a time each day.

What caught my attention this past week was the life metaphor. Our lives change and our priorities change when we shift our metaphors for life and how we see life. A lot of us see life as an hourglass- as time winding down. Scripture tells us it’s more like a temporary assignment or a test we must pass. I think if we have that metaphor, God’s metaphor for our lives, it changes our lives. It really brings meaning to our lives and changes how we live.

Last week we talked about how we were created for God’s purposes and I used the illustration of the mixer. We know how to get the most benefit out of a mixer because we know what it is created to do and we know what it is not created to do. Imagine, though, digging this up 2000 years from now, looking at it and trying to figure out what in the world they used this thing for; suppose reaching the conclusion that it must be a cement mixer, and trying to mix cement with it. What would happen to it? It would burn out. Why? Because they didn’t understand the purpose for which it was created and they lived outside of those purposes; I think the same thing happens in our own lives.

When we fail to understand the purpose for which we were created, we wind up living for other purposes for which we were not created and, as a result, our lives get burned out. We don’t experience the abundant life that God has intended for us, so it’s important for us to discover from our Creator our purposes over the next five weeks. We are going to look at each of those five purposes.

Today the first purpose we are going to cover is the purpose of worship. I have a new object lesson for you. I tried to get one but I couldn’t. It’s the object lesson of a piston. You know what a piston is, right? It goes in an engine. What happens when your pistons misfire? What happens if one of them gets stuck? What happens when two of the four, some of you have six and some of you have eight, pistons don’t function? What happens? It slows down. It doesn’t function well. It jitters; the same thing is true in our lives. If we don’t have all five purposes of God in our lives, not just one or two, but all five operating, we don’t experience the cruising effect of being in the center of God’s will. If some of them are gunked up or stuck or misfiring, we’ll experience this jitteriness of life and we won’t get the power of God in our lives as we had hoped. Therefore, we need all five purposes of God working in our life and, of course, none of it works unless you have a spark.

To let you know, you do not have this divine spark in you. It’s not there. It’s something you must acquire outside of yourselves. As we hook our lives or connect our lives to God, he then gives us his power which sparks your engines and brings us to life. Until you connect your life to God through faith in Jesus Christ, none of what I say today or during these 40 days of purpose will make any sense to you. So the first order of business is to plug ourselves into God, who is the battery for our lives, who sparks the engine, who makes everything run and flow so we experience the abundant life that he has intended for us. You may be sitting there saying I don’t buy into this. I don’t accept that.

Well, most people don’t in our culture, and our culture has been looking for answers in all different places. Last week I used the illustration of the keys. If you can’t find your keys in one particular room and you have been looking in the room endlessly, what do you do? You go to a different room. So I encourage you, if you are not finding satisfactory answers for your life, try a different approach. Try the room called “God,” look at God’s purposes for your life, and see what happens. That is what I hope for during these 40 days, that we will look at God’s purposes for our lives, and see what happens, see what God does in them.

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