Summary: WE are commanded to grow. How do we do that? Read the sermon
A. The last couple of weeks now we have been studying the purpose of the church
B. WE have talked about worship, we have talked about connecting, now we are going to talk about growing
C. Growing sound like a gardening term
D. You grow a garden
E. Maybe it is a term we talk about our kids
F. Our kids are growing so fast
G. But what does growing have to do with our church?
H. We are going to look at first, what it means to grow 2nd we will look at some ultra practical ways to grow.
II. What does it mean?
1. We have to keep in mind the who is writing this epistle
2. That would be Paul, Now we know Paul was not always a Christian in fact he was very much not a Christian, he persecuted Christians
3. Paul went from that beginning to the point he is now in a relatively fast rate
4. Now Paul wrote a lot of the New Testament. (Find out how many)
5. You would think that if he wrote that much that he would know everything and live exactly how he was suppose to
6. Well he is still human, he still made mistakes, but that is not the important part
7. What matters is his desire
8. Paul wrote this after he has had more ministry then most of us will ever have
9. After you are at a place so long, you can easily loose your drive and ambition
10. Paul is talking about that exact issue
11. Let us look at this and find out what Paul really means
B. That is what we want!
1. Vs. 12 starts off with the pronoun this, what is this? Read 10-11.
2. He is basically saying he wants to get closer to God
3. Admitting he is not perfect
4. 1 John 4:19 We love because he first loved us
5. why is this pressing on so important for Paul. I John 4:19
6. look at 13 Paul once again is open and honest, you have to respect for his honesty
7. Paul admits he does not have it all figured out
8. But he presses on…
a) Forgetting the past
b) And heading forward
9. Vs. 14 is often looked at in the wrong way. People read that and instantly assume we will get a prize in heaven.
10. Let me offer you a different way to look at that
a) Paul was a athlete or at least like me a wanna be athlete who liked to run
b) I have a real desire to run a marathon
c) I want to run one really bad!
d) Here is the thing do I care if I win? NO!
e) My goal, My prize if you will is to finish
f) Granted the first person will receive $10,000. But that is not what would be motivating my prize is the finish line
11. The finish line in this situation is being with Jesus.
C. You should be exited now
1. Paul has just laid out for us the plan, the goal that we are to achieve.
2. This is not just his goal
3. this is not just a goal pastors
4. This is not just the goal of “good Christians” whatever that is.
5. This is the goal of everyone
6. We should all have this drive to press on
7. I pumped up, I’m ready to go, are you?
8. The question then becomes How are we going to do it?
9. How are we going to grow, how are we going to reach the goal
10. There are three different areas in growing that we are going to look at.
b) Buddy System
c) Growth Groups.
III. How are we going to do it?
1. Joshua 1:8 Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.
2. I thess 5:17 tells us to pray continually
3. These verses gives us a little glimpse on how to study the Bible and pray
4. At this time people will tell you that you must get up at 5:30 in the morning and read your Bible cover to cover
5. You know what, there is no correct method
6. If you are able to, and have a high enough reading comprehension, read through the Bible in a year
a) Some of us, meaning me, just can’t do that, I would rather take three years or so to make it though
7. I looked at the Ladies Bible study new book. In it it tells you to highlight all the verbs, underline the proper names, ect. If that works for you, DO IT!