Summary: It is incredible how that God can take a seeming disadvantage and turn it into an advantage for His glory.
Philippians 1:12-14 -- “But I would ye should understand, brethren, that the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather unto the furtherance of the gospel;” “So that my bonds in Christ are manifest in all the palace, and in all other places;” “And many of the brethren in the Lord, waxing confident by my bonds, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.”
l. INTRODUCTION -- DISADVANTAGES
-We live in a world of disadvantages. We live in a world that often holds the upper hand to our dreams, our desires, and ultimately to our destinies.
Doors of Daring -- Henry van Dyke
The mountains that inclose the vale,
With walls of granite, steep and high,
Invite the fearless foot to scale
Their stairway to the sky.
The restless, deep, dividing sea
That flows and foams from shore to shore,
Calls its sunburned chivalry,
“Push out, set sail, explore!”
The bars of life at which we fret,
That seem to prison and control,
Are but the doors of daring, set
Ajar before the soul.
Say not, “Too poor,” but freely give;
Sigh not, “Too weak,” but boldly try;
You never began to live
Until you dare to die.
-And so it is with the general scope of life. Often times men allow their entire minds to be set at doubt and discouragement because of the seeming disadvantages the life seems to bring.
-Their disadvantages become their entire focus. They rob the joy of a walk with God, these troubling perplexities stifle any spiritual relationship that one might desire to have with God, and the seeming disadvantages of life will remove our vision.
-Often the enemy would like for us to believe that there are a world of physical, mental, and spiritual disadvantages fighting against the Church. He would have men to believe that these disadvantages would prevail against the Church and disarm her efforts at evangelizing and discipling a lost world. But that is not in the plan or purposes of God.
Isaiah 33:23 -- “. . . then is the prey of a great spoil divided; the lame take the prey.”
1 Corinthians 1:27-29 -- “But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;” “And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:” “That no flesh should glory in his presence.”
Isaiah 29:14 -- “Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvelous work among this people, even a marvelous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid.”
Psalm 113:7-9 -- “He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth the needy out of the dunghill;” “That he may set him with princes, even with the princes of his people.” “He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the LORD.”
-When one looks at his own poverty, his own burdens, his own trials, his deficiencies of life and understands that they are nothing more than the thing that shapes the heroes of God, a new perspective is taken. The Advantage of Disadvantage!!!