Summary: We need to develop a culture of winning in the church today.

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September 18, 2011

Morning Worship

Text: Acts 4:1-22

Subject: Gaining Victory

Title: Playing to Win

I love to watch pro football. I am not a football fan but really am just a home team fan. I loved the football Cardinals when they were in St. Louis and despised them when the moved to Arizona. I didn’t care much for the Los Angeles Rams but loved them when they moved to St. Louis. So right now I am a Rams fan and whether they win or lose I will watch them play.

One thing that I really like about this Rams team is that since the hiring of a new coach three years ago, all the players seem to have bought into his system. When I talk about “his system” I mean his philosophy of coaching, playing and winning. He is introducing a culture of change to the old Rams team. The players understand that what he says and does when it comes to football is for the betterment of the team. Since he has come to St. Louis, he has brought in younger players and has gotten rid of troublemakers. He has released some good players who lacked discipline. Most of all, he has introduced to this team a team first philosophy where everyone on the team looks out for the teammates. He is giving them an opportunity to win and is doing so by bringing out the best in the players he has. So now, every time this group of players steps out onto the field they think that they have an opportunity to win. Last week was their first game of the season and they lost 31 – 13 to a really good Philadelphia team. But they didn’t lose because of the game plan. They lost because of some little mistakes along the way. When they walked off the field each one of them knew that if they can eliminate the mistakes they will win games.

What I really like about the Rams is that there are no superstars on the team. There are potential superstars and some of them will be great players, but they are a team that just goes out and does what their coach has taught them to do, and the more they play with that attitude, the more games they will win. They go out and play smart, play hard and play to win.

That is what I want to talk to you about today. Jesus is building a team called “the church” and He is giving every team member the opportunity to get on the playing field, get into the mix of the battle, and play to win. Here are the similarities between the church and the Rams… 1) Both are made up of ordinary people who are empowered to do extraordinary things… 2) Both rely on a game plan that is set in place by their leader… 3) And both pay a price for being on a winning team – they give up their individual pursuits to become a team.

There is one difference between the church and the Rams. The church is guaranteed victory if its members are willing to get in the game.

I want to challenge you to day to be a Christian who is willing to play to win.

Read Acts 4:1-22

Everyone hold up your bibles…

I believe this is God’s word…

I believe every word in it…

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