Summary: We all need advice for life, but the best advice comes from the Word of God.
INTRO.- ILL.- Someone said, “Good advice is what your own kids disregard but save to give to their kids.” Isn’t this the truth? “Now listen, you kids, my daddy always said…” I may not have done what daddy always said, but now I know he was right and I’m going to tell my kids.
ILL.- Someone else said, “We could all save ourselves a lot of words if we’d only remember that people rarely take advice unless they have to pay for it.”
Does this mean that you’ll listen to what I have to say “in the pulpit” but not “out of the pulpit”?
All of us need advice at some time or other in life. Sometimes we get it whether we want it or not.
ILL.- I’ll never forget my first official “date.” I wasn’t 16 years old yet so mom and dad took me to pick up my date. And mother gave me all kinds of advice as to what to do, what to say, and how to treat the young lady. Boy, was I embarrassed but mother was right.
ILL.- And dad, well, dad used to say to me, “Steven, pay attention to what you’re doing.” I guess I had a tendency to daydream a bit or maybe a lot. Good advice and well taken.
But once we reach adulthood we still need advice and we still must learn. This is where the Lord and His Word come in. The best advice (and it’s more than advice) is from the Word of God. If we all would believe God’s Word and obey God’s Word we would be a lot better off. We all would save ourselves a lot of heartaches and headaches.
PROP.- This message today will be somewhat different. It’s long and yet it’s short. I have six pieces of advice, but it’s short advice from God’s word. Sound advice from God’s Word for various situations in life: 1- trials will come 2- All will pass 3- God promises life 4- Temptation is strong 5- God gives good 6- Anger displeases God
1- TRIALS WILL COME
James 1:2-3 “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.”
ILL.- The backwoods preacher found a small boy all alone, playing in the dirt. “Where’s your father?” the preacher asked. The boy said, “He was hanged last week.”
“Where’s your mother?” “She run off.”
“Where’s your sister?” “She’s in jail.”
“Is there anybody else in your family?” “Yup, I’ve got a brother.”
“Where is he?” “At Harvard University.”
“Well, at least one member of your family is doing well. What is he studying?” “‘Nothin’. They’re studying him.”
Brothers and sisters, that boy had to be discouraged with life! I don’t think anybody’s life could be as bad as that boy’s. BUT WE ALL MUST ADMIT THAT LIFE CAN GET PRETTY DIFFICULT AT TIMES. And certain things happen to us that can cause us to want to give up on life.
ILL.- Marshall Hayden, a preacher from Columbus, Ohio, wrote an article several years ago entitled, "Would every non-hurting member please stand up?" He went on to point out that people who come to church may put on their best clothes and their best smiles, BUT MANY OF THEM ARE STILL HURTING PEOPLE.
He wrote, "Think your way around the where the saints gather on the Lord’s Day.
- Over there is a family with an income of $550 and an outgo of $1000. (that might be stretching it a bit, but you get the idea)
- There are two children in one family who, according to their parents, are failures.
- The lady in the back pew just tested positive for cancer.
- Sam and Jane just had a nasty fight. In fact, the straw that broke the camel’s back. Each one is thinking seriously about divorce.
- Last Monday Jim learned that he is going to be laid off from work at the end of the week.
- Sarah has tried to her best to cover the bruises her drunken husband inflicted when he came home last Friday night.
- The Smith’s little girl has a hole in her heart and needs surgery."
Brother Hayden went on to write, "there are the lonely, the dying, the bankrupt, the exhausted, and others who are at the mercy of forces beyond their control. They’re all there. And there are those of us with lesser hurts, but they don’t seem like small hurts to us: tired from being overweight and run to death, an income that barely covers the essentials, an indifferent and un-alert spouse, a boring job, poor grades, a friend who is not much of a friend anymore, parents who don’t understand and don’t seem to care." Brother Hayden wrote, "You can travel down every pew in every church and find some hurting people." Isn’t that the truth?