No One Can Climb A Smooth Mountain
Sermon by Evangelist Jennifer A. Mears November 2005
Main Text: Matthew 14:22-33
God Will Use Unusual Circumstances To Educate and Equip us, and Lead us into or help us Enter Into A Greater Level
Introduction: God’s ways are not our ways. His dealings with mankind are a cause for wonder…many times “His Signs and Wonders (miracles) it confounds (confuses, astounds) the wise…”
God is using a storm to bring His disciples to a greater level. Anyone who is expecting to grow spiritually should expect storms and difficulties. There is a saying I have heard…that " no one can climb a smooth mountain."
READ Matthew 14:22-33 read NKJV (then go over some in Mssge Bible)
Mat 14:22 As soon as the meal was finished, he insisted that the disciples get in the boat and go on ahead to the other side while he dismissed the people.
Mat 14:23 With the crowd dispersed, he climbed the mountain so he could be by himself and pray. He stayed there alone, late into the night.
Mat 14:24 Meanwhile, the boat was far out to sea when the wind came up against them and they were battered by the waves.
(Placed in the storm but not left out there alone for long because)…
Mat 14:25 At about four o’clock in the morning, Jesus came toward them walking on the water.
Mat 14:26 They were scared out of their wits. "A ghost!" they said, crying out in terror.
Mat 14:27 But Jesus was quick to comfort them. "Courage, it’s me. Don’t be afraid."
Mat 14:28 Peter, suddenly bold, said, "Master, if it’s really you, call me to come to you on the water." (Faith exercised here)
Mat 14:29 He said, "Come ahead." Jumping out of the boat, Peter walked on the water to Jesus.
Mat 14:30 But when he looked down at the waves churning beneath his feet, he lost his nerve and started to sink. He cried, "Master, save me!"
Mat 14:31 Jesus didn’t hesitate. He reached down and grabbed his hand. Then he said, "Faint-heart, what got into you?"
Mat 14:32 The two of them climbed into the boat, and the wind died down.
Mat 14:33 The disciples in the boat, having watched the whole thing, worshiped Jesus, saying, "This is it! You are God’s Son for sure!"
1. Obedience Will Not Stop the Storms From Coming. Matt. 14:22
A. Jesus sent the disciples into a storm.
B. Jesus sent the storm to the disciples.
C. Jesus sent the storm after they had sailed for a while.
2. Jesus Sees Us in the Storm. Mark 6:48
A. He saw them from a mountain.
B. He saw them from a great distance.
C. He watch them struggle for a while.
3. Jesus Will Show Up When the Storm is at Its Worst. Mark 6:48
A. He came when the wind was boisterous.
B. He came when the disciple had exhausted their resources.
C. He came when the disciples were at an extremity.
4. We Must Weather the Storm Until Jesus Comes.
A. We must keep sailing…keep paddling.
B. We must keep dipping the water out of the boat.
C. We must keep moving the weight around.
D. We must keep on the course God has set before us
(read the map and keep it close by – Bibiel)
5. Jesus Will Get Your Boat Ashore in a Hurry. John. 6:21
A. God can bring us quicker than human means.
B. God can move us without The use of time.
C. In an instance God will move us from difficulty to destiny.
6. Our Cry Will Cause God to Extend His Hands. Matt. 14:30
A. Peter began to sink.
B. Peter allowed his situation to suppress his faith.
C. Jesus saved him with a hand.
7. The Storm Will Cease When Jesus Enters Our Situation.
A. God will bring us to a greater level of peace.
B. God will bring us to a greater understanding of His Divine Dealings and Divine Connections.
C. God will bring us to a greater and deeper level of faith and trust in Him.
As believers, we must not allow storms to fill our Life Boat with fear. (just as we learn from our example of Jesus and His Disciples) We must realize that God can and will use storms to bring us to a higher level.
The sun will burn, the rain makes things wet, but only the winds moves stuff around…and let us remember that the winds may move us…but it is God who is moving the wind.
During Bad Times – We should pray!
When things get tough, always remember... Faith doesn’t get you around trouble, it gets you through it !!
A. Pray for God’s Guidance and To Come To Your Aid
· We need God’s guidance to make the right decisions, especially during trying times
· Our minds becomes “fogged” when we are desperate or feel threatened and are backed into a corner by a situation – when the cards are stacked against us/shock sets in – but do not lose faith
“Stand still, Fear Not and See The Glory of the Lord…
Mssg Bible - Exodus 14:13 Moses spoke to the people: "Don’t be afraid. Stand firm and watch GOD do his work of salvation for you today.
Then goes on to say…
Mssg Bible Exodus 14:14 GOD will fight the battle for you. And you? You keep your mouths shut!"
· From our trials and troubles can come – believe, have faith, give over to God to handle for you/trust in The Lord
· I can’t deliver you, although I will help you by praying with you
· Your friends can’t deliver you, although they can comfort you
· Moses didn’t deliver the Hebrew nation…
(Exodus 2:23-25, "And it came to pass in process of time, that the king of Egypt died: and the children of Israel sighed by reason of the bondage, and they cried, and their cry came up unto God by reason of the bondage. And God heard their groaning, and God remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob. And God looked upon the children of Israel, and God had respect unto them.") · Only God can deliver you!
· Knowing that God controls the eternal outcome – GOD IS IN CONTROL if you allow Him to be (in your life and in your situation)
(Job 19:25-27, "For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God: Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me.")
· God knows who to use to help us
· God knows what to use to help us
· God knows when the time is right to intervene
· God knows where the answers are
· God knows how to solve our problem – even if it is not when we think it should be solved or how we think it should be solved
· God is in complete control, so have peace in knowing that He is!
2. Even during Good Times – We should pray for God’s Guidance and Protection…ahead of time (pre-need …as well as at-need )===funerals
Colossians 4:2, "Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving;"
and always be prepared (wear the full armor of God at all times) for when trouble comes your way…and stand on the truth and don’t fear – God is near!
A. Guidance (remind yourself by the Lord’s Prayer—He taught us how to pray
· To keep us on His Pathway (Thy will be done- on earth as it is in heaven)
· To keep us from sin and temptation and harm (And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil)
· To help others in trying times (For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever.)
We should be concerned will others are suffering in trials, and we need to pray for God to lead us in helping them. This world belongs to God and it is His power that we need to help us as we journey through it and His glory for guiding us to them and to allow God to use as vessels.
· God has delivered us from the world and it’s rough roads (How many of us pray when things are going well?)
· (Ill.) The Apostle Paul had a thankful heart during good times because he knew that God had delivered him thru the trying times and he knew God’s grace was sufficient
· We like Paul, should remember and be thankful for the times God has delivered us from Satan’s snares.
2Co 12:9 and then he told me, My grace is enough; it’s all you need. My strength comes into its own in your weakness. Once I heard that, I was glad to let it happen. I quit focusing on the handicap and began appreciating the gift. It was a case of Christ’s strength moving in on my weakness.
2Co 12:10 Now I take limitations in stride, and with good cheer, these limitations that cut me down to size--abuse, accidents, opposition, bad breaks. I just let Christ take over! And so the weaker I get, the stronger I become.
· Knowing that we belong to Jesus
(John 10:29, "My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand."(NIV)
· Knowing nothing can separate us from His love (Romans 8:35-39)
· Knowing our Heavenly Father cares for us and will always be with us
Closing: Today I hope we have learned or developed a deeper understanding in how important it is to be content in whatever circumstance we are in. Content in knowing God will help us, deliver us, guide us, and no matter what the outcome, we can find peace in God.
What circumstance are you in this evening?
Are you a child of the Living God? If not, you are in a very dangerous circumstance, but there is deliverance available to you right now. Trust God! My friend don’t be content with a life that is lost…lost in the darkness of this sinful world. Give your heart and life to God and be content in knowing He is in control.
Christian, is there a circumstance in your life that you need to talk to God about? Then come to the altar. We can be content with any circumstance as long as we are allowing God to control it. Let God be in control…and lead and guide you as you climb that mountain…
Protect me from those who try to do me harm. In the face of evil and danger, help me to remember that You are God, and evil…Satan has NO power over You or those who choose to follow you. Guard my steps and keep my feet on Your Path. Lord, help me to hear you instructions from You that you know I should hear. Tell me what it is that I need to do to grow and give me acceptance to deal with those difficult things I would rather avoid during my growth in You. Do not spare the rod…do what is best for me and give me a faith that will never fail. I put my trust in you. No weapon formed against me shall prosper. There is nothing that is more powerful than You and Your Might. Be with me , strengthen me, and give me peace…
Any need you may have, bring it and lay it down at the feet of Jesus…