Summary: Sermon shows how God wants to use ordinary people based on Joshua 1:5-9; and shows how we will have success based on the promises of God. Acknowledgement: Rick Warren
STRETCHING MY IMAGINATION
50 Days of Faith Part 2 of 8 - Joshua 1:5-9
Last week we launched our 50 days of faith series. The keynote passage is ‘Without faith it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:6).’ I am asking God to stretch my faith, your faith, and our faith as a Faith Community.
Have you ever asked the question ‘what on earth did God put me here to do?’ You should ask that question and discuss it with your children. God put you on this earth for a reason, a purpose. He has a plan, a big dream for your life. He has a big dream for this church. Let’s not waste it. Your purpose will only be found through Christ, because without God life makes no sense. God wants to use you for a great purpose, one greater than you could ever imagine. That’s why God made you. He made you so He could use you for his glory.
God wants to use Calvary for a great purpose. Were here for a reason.
But we struggle with this. We think ‘who me?’ Who are you kidding? You don’t know all the baggage I have? The main blockage of God using us is ourselves, not God. The problem with this is in our mind. We have mental blocks, emotional barriers that keep us saying, “How could God ever use me?” So for God to use us and bless our life we need a change in our thinking, in our imagination. We must be transformed.
That is what the Apostle Paul taught (Romans 12:2).
Every great accomplishment that’s ever happened in history began as an idea in somebody’s imagination. Then they tried and it became a reality.
God brought a man into my life named Pat Nixon. He forever changed my life and family. Someone reached out to Pat with the love of Jesus. Pat came from the streets and he began to minister to people where he was. Today the Mustard Seed Street Ministry is a non-profit Christian humanitarian organization that has been providing services for the homeless, street people of Calgary since 1984. It began by offering meals and a place of spiritual worship and comfort. It now provides food, clothing, and shelter, along with education and employment services. Pat in faith started by serving one person. Today the Mustard Seed provides meals to an average of 800 people every day. It started by one man who had faith as small as a mustard seed.
You’ve got to have a dream in life otherwise you’re just existing. But f your really want to live you have to get out of the boat, not stay in dreamland. You have to go for it. The scripture confirms this ‘without a vision, a revelation, the people perish.’
Now it is great to have a dream but that is not enough. You need God’s dream or vision for your life. What He put you here on earth to do. What He wants to use you for. Because if God isn’t using you, what in the world is your life being used for right now?
1 Corinthians 2:9 “No eye has seen, no ear has heard and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love Him.”
Some of us know that we need to step out in faith but we relate God to our experiences and are frozen in our faith.
Best selling author John Ortberg thought he and his wife needed to step out of their comfort zone. So he decided to surprise her by buying them both a hot air balloon ride. Little did he know that the fellow who would be navigating the balloon was a former hippie who decided on his new career while under the influence of alcohol and drugs.
They were up in the thing; John, his wife, another couple and the driver.
The hippie driver said: "By the way, if things get a little choppy on the way down, don’t be surprised. I’ve never flown this particular balloon before, and I’m not sure how it’s going to handle the descent."
John’s wife looked at him in horror and said, "You mean to tell me we are a thousand feet up in the air with an unemployed surfer who started flying hot-air balloons because he got drunk, crashed a pickup, injured his brother, and has never been in this one before and doesn’t know how to bring it down?"
Then the wife of the other couple looked at John and spoke--the only words either of them were
to utter throughout the entire flight. You’re a pastor. Do something religious.
So John says ‘I took an offering.’
When I talk to you about serving Jesus in a new area, about trusting him in faith for something,