Sermons

Summary: Change is a natural and basic part of life

Seasons Change

Text: Ecclesiastes 3.1-8, Hebrews 13.8

June 1998

Introduction

1. The changing of Seasons:

a.) The fall: Colors of the leaves change, they adapt for winter

b.) The Spring: Everything begins to come back to life, they adapt for a new season of life

2. Everything has a time:

a.) Life is constantly changing: The more things change the more they stay the same, children grow and people move away, things change

b.) Things that remain the same: Same church, same area, same God, same Jesus, the basics are still the same

3. Changes here at our church:

a.) The pastoral transition: New Pastor, New ways of doing things

b.) Our focus is in the gospel: Change is part of being alive

1 There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: 2 a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, 3 a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, 4 a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, 5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain, 6 a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, 7 a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, 8 a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.

Ecclesiastes 3.1-8

Body

I. What is Change?

A. Different Definitions:

1. Money you get back from buying something or coins that you carry

2. Change is part of fishing: new fishing lures

3. What change is not: It is not a dirty word

B. Webster: Change is a period of transition, a type of movement, doing something out of the ordinary

C. Personal Change:

1. We now have Abigail, our first child

2. I have just finished school

3. We are a part of a different denomination

4. This is my 1st church

5. We moved back to Ohio

6. Change is part of being alive

II. Challenge of Change

A. Choice Of Change:

1. There are really only two choices

a.) Roll with the punches of life

b.) We can fight the tide of time and be swept away

2. Change will happen: There is no way to stop change any more than we can stop time from moving ahead

B. Sanctify Change:

1. Change can be used by God to do great things – Biblical examples

a.) Moses was God’s agent of change for the nation of Israel to bring them out of Egypt

b.) David was God’s agent of change to make Israel into a mighty change

c.) Nehemiah was God’s agent of change to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem

d.) Jesus was God’s agent of change to bring salvation to humanity

2. Give the changes in your life to God

a.) God is still in control: He hasn’t left His throne and He is running the show

b.) Change is part of being alive

III. Challenge of the Church

A. View Change in a positive light

1. Business Week article: ’Business Week,’ 1958: "With over 50 foreign cars already on sale here, the Japanese auto industry isn’t likely to carve out a big slice of the U.S. market."

2. Statement about airplanes: Marshal Ferdinand Foch in 1911: "Airplanes are interesting toys, but they have no military value."

B. The church must adapt to meet needs

1. Our goal can not be to remain the same

a.) When a plant stops growing it starts dying

b.) The church and Christians are the same way. We can never afford to stop growing

2. We must reach out to our community

a.) Find a target group: A group of people in this community that no one else is reaching

b.) Discover the needs that they have in their lives

c.) Develop ministries targeted to meet those felt needs

C. Change is part of being alive:

1. Hebrews 13.8: Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.

2. Change is real: It keeps us fresh, Change helps us to grow

3. Change allows us to see God’s hand in action

Conclusion

Three P’s of Change: Pure, Persuasive and Powerful

A. Pure:

1. Biblical: Every change that we make must be based on Biblical principles

2. Essential and truthful

B. Persuasive:

1. Leading but not pushy

2. Loving but not smothering

3. Living not stale

C. Powerful:

1. Life giving

2. Life restoring

3. Life finding

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