Summary: One of the 40 Days of Purpose sermons, in the program based on Rick Warren’s book "The Purpose Driven Life."
Not long ago I read an amazing story. A man named Bill Mallory traveled to India to discover the purpose of life.
But he didn’t find the answer there.
So after returning to the United States, he noticed a sign at Chevron gas station that simply said, “As you travel, ask us.”
So every time he pulled into this Chevron station, he would walk up to the clerk, point to the sign and say, “I’m a traveler. I’d like to ask you a question. What is the purpose life?”
These were the real answers he got. I’m not making this up. The first guy said, “Sorry. I’m new here.”
The second guy said, “I don’t remember anything in the manual about that.”
Another guy said, “I’m not much for spiritual stuff myself, sir.”
One guy gave him a leering look and a wink, whatever that meant.
However, most people just gave him a blank stare.
One day Mallory got a phone call from Chevron Customer Relations.
He said, “We understand you’ve been asking our dealer questions and getting unsatisfactory answers.”
The man suggested that he write out his question and send it to Chevron Corporate with a self-addressed stamped envelope.
So Bill Mallory wrote, “What is the purpose of life?” and sent it to Chevron Gas Company.
A couple of weeks later, the envelope was returned. The only thing in it was an application for a credit card!
If you want to know the purpose of life, you’re not going to find it in a gas station.
You’re not going to find it on a talk show.
You’re not going to find it in a self-help book.
You’re not going to find it at some seminar.
If you want to know the purpose of life, you have to either talk to the creator who made you, or look in the owner’s manual – the Bible.
You were made by God and you were made for God. And until you understand that, life isn’t going to make sense.
We are now in our second week of this series called “40 Days of Purpose.” Today, we’re going to look at the first of God’s five purposes for your life.
God has five reasons for creating you, and today we’re going to look at the first.
Psalm 149:4 says “the Lord takes pleasure in his people.”
The Bible teaches that we were created for God’s enjoyment and pleasure.
As you know, I was not here last week. I expected to be, but because of Hurricanes closing airports in Florida the mission team of our church stayed a wee bit longer than we expected.
However, I am told that last week Will preached about how you were created to be loved by God.
This week we’re looking at the flip side, the first purpose of your life, which is God wants you to love Him back.
The first purpose of your life – God loves you and wants you to love Him back.
He wants you to bring enjoyment back to Him.
One day Jesus was asked, “Lord, what’s the most important command in the entire Scriptures?”
The answer that Jesus gave was, “Love the Lord your God. This is the first and greatest commandment.”
God says if you don’t get anything else, here’s what you’re supposed to do in life: you’re supposed to learn to love Me back, because I made you to love you and I know you. And I want you to know and love me back.
Now, there’s a word for this.
It is the word “worship.”
Worship is knowing and loving God back. Our first purpose in life is to worship God.
It’s our primary objective. It’s your highest priority. It is your number one purpose in life. We’re going to talk about what that means today because, unfortunately worship is misunderstood.
Perhaps the best verse that describes worship is from Romans 12, verse one:
1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God-- this is your spiritual act of worship.
2 Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is-- his good, pleasing and perfect will.
I hope everyone is in a small group for our 40 Days of Purpose. Those of you who are will be going into great detail about this verse this week. You will all be studying and thinking this week about what it means to worship.
But I do want us to think this morning about five important elements of worship.
If you look at your bulletin, the way we divide the section of this morning’s worship service is actually the outline of today’s sermon.