Summary: We live in a world today that is desperate for something real...something that is available to ordinary people just like me and you. Peter and John stood before the most skeptical, anti-Christian crowd possible...are those people recognized them as ordina
RECEIVING YOUR MIRACLE
For several weeks we've been looking at the subject of miracles...and I had planned on wrapping it up last week. And the reason I wanted to finish up was simply because I felt it was going nowhere and that I might even have been mistaken to even approach such a subject. It seemed like you were not ready for any miracles...because after all, miracles are what happen to other people...not us...right? RIGHT?
This past week someone in a position to know about such things said he could tell a lot about what is going on in the life of a pastor by the messages he preaches. And that caused me to do a lot of thinking...and to examine the focus of my messages over the past several months...and even back to when I first came here.
I try very hard to be sensitive to the Lord when it comes to my preaching. I want to bring you a word that is in line with God's Word and also in line with what God wants to do in this church. And I think that for the most part I've been able to do that.
But why all the focus on miracles? What does that have to do with my life? Now, realize that I am your pastor. I've been given the responsibility of addressing spiritual needs and of teaching and training you and helping you as individuals and as a group to mature in the faith.
I have a good deal of life experience as a Christian...I've gone to seminary and have been trained in the fine arts of homiletics...hermeneutics...apologetics...ethics... psychology and counseling...witnessing and evangelism. So I guess I really have it all together, right?
With all that education and training I've surely got all the answers...and since I have all the answers I must never have any problems. I never get plagued by doubt and fears. I never get hurt or discouraged. I have a perfect family and a perfect marriage. I have such great wisdom that I always make the right decisions in my life and ministry. Right?
I found out that the statement that a preacher's messages often reflect his life was pretty much right-on. And maybe I'm preaching on miracles because I desperately need God to work a miracle in my life...in fact several miracles. But realizing that could bring a great deal of guilt, because I'm here to address your spiritual needs.
But after a great deal of reflection and prayer I discovered that the basic needs of this church are just a reflection of the needs in my life and those of my family. God has assured me that my preaching is not selfish or self-motivated because many of you need a miracle every bit as much as I do.
I guess that's why we tolerate each other...and maybe that's why God brought me here...so that together we can grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord...that together we can experience the presence and the power of Almighty God. I believe I have much to offer you, and that you have much to offer me in my walk & service for God.
I guess what I'm saying is that many of you are in great need...and in some cases desperate need of a miracle. I am also in need of a miracle. My family and I have been through the fire in many ways, and the flames are not quenched yet by any means. And many of your families have been through the fire too.
As a church we've seen the forces of the enemy rise up and try to tear us apart. And the Satanic attacks are evident in so many areas...so many ways. There's sickness and disease...marital problems...financial problems...relational separation...and also a definite lack of Holy Spirit power and anointing.
But I've found some interesting truths this week that have helped me to realize that we may also be right on the brink of a miracle. I'm convinced more than ever that God has been leading us to the place where we'll see and experience His power.
And that is a very good place to be. It's an exciting place to be. At least it is for me, because I'm determined to stand firm and stay focused until that deepest desire of my heart...that need that burns deep inside me becomes a reality...until I receive my miracle.
And it's that deep longing in my heart for God's touch that drives me when I feel like giving up...when I feel that God is a million miles away and too busy to meet my inconsequential needs. That longing and desire never goes away, it just gets more desperate.
As I look through Scripture, I've found that few people in history were in touch with their heart's desires...with that burning need inside...any more than Hannah was. You know the story of Hannah? It's found in 1 Samuel 1....(turn there.)