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Summary: This message informs students that on the horizon is the school year and we are quickly approaching the reality of living in our mission field.

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Text: "My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one.” John 17.15

Week #1: Where are you going, how are you going to get there, what are you going to do?

Week #2: Expect distractions, turn to the map, arrive safely.

Week #3: Attitude of silence, soundness, stillness

Week #4: Back to reality?

There is a reality that God wants us to live in. Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one. Einstein. Students today can often hide behind computer screens, creative screen names, athletic events…live with out anyone truly discovering who you are. God desires to bring his reality into your heart, so that you may live in harmony with his desire for your life. Notice that Christ prayed for us “not to be taken out of the world, but to protect us from the evil one.” Meaning that there will be moments when we no longer want to live in our current state of affairs, and secondly that as we live in this world, we will face conflict. Otherwise why would Christ pray for us to be protected? There is a reality that God desires us to live in. Reality doesn’t mean we neglect dreaming for the future. It means we can’t stick our heads in the sand and ignore what is happening around us.

All of us can maximize our summer vacation if we establish ourselves in the realities that God desires us to live in.

1. Reality of the Cross: "When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.”

Notice how Christ triumphed over powers, authorities and law (written code)? By the cross!

It was not by human effort, keeping certain rules, adhering to the spiritual disciplines for “x” number hours a day. It was the cross!

“For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel–not with words of human wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.” 1 Cor. 1.17

Students must walk in the power of the cross. You do not conquer the realities of temptation, frustrations, anger, hurt, addictions, etc. without the reality of the cross. The cross is our banner for victory. The cross is what we hold high as the sign of our victory.

“May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.” Gal. 6.14

It is through the cross that we have victory. But Lance many have died on a cross. Yes but only God’s son has died and the cross for our victory. He does not want us to be taken from the world, but by the authority found in the cross we can live protected lives and victorious lives. The battle for the reality of the cross must be fought. Students in this room are willing to give their lives for the cross…give their lives for the advancement of his kingdom.

No man is worth his salt who is not ready at all times to risk his body… to risk his well being… to risk his life… in a great cause.

– T. Roosevelt...

We do not use any other symbol as the token of our faith more than the cross. It’s not just cool jewelry to wear, but the mode of death for our Master, and our emblem of victory. It is the gold medal that we wear saying we are champions over sin, death, hell and the grave. We are to walking in the victory of God and that victory is found in the cross.

2 points of victory:

1. Victory over the law

2. Victory over powers and authorities.

2. Reality of Community: " The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body--whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free--and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.

Now the body is not made up of one part but of many. If the foot should say, "Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. And if the ear should say, "Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body.”

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