Summary: Paul exemplified a willingness to serve the Lord Jesus Christ, the principles of which apply to us in lesser but still important ways.
What A Willing Servant of the Lord Looks Like
1. Mary received a parrot as a gift. The parrot was fully grown with a very bad attitude and worse vocabulary. Every other word was profanity; those that weren't profanity were, to say the least, rude.
Mary tried to change the bird's attitude by constantly saying polite words and playing soft music, anything she could think of. Nothing worked.
She yelled at the bird and the bird got worse. She shook the bird and the bird became even madder and ruder. Finally, in a moment of desperation, Mary put the parrot in the freezer to get a minute of peace.
For a few moments she heard the bird swearing, squawking, kicking and screaming. Then, suddenly, there was absolute quiet. Mary was frightened that she might have actually hurt the bird and quickly opened the freezer door.
The parrot calmly stepped out onto Mary's extended arm. Perfectly calm, the parrot said, "I am very sorry that I offended you with my language and my actions and I ask your forgiveness. I will endeavor to correct my behavior, and I am sure it will never happen again."
Mary was astounded at the changes in the bird's attitude and was about to ask what had changed him, when the parrot continued, "May I ask what the chicken did?" http://mistupid.com/
2. Saul of Tarsus had an attitude adjustment, too. He was out to persecute Christians, but on the Road to Damascus he had a vision of the living Christ and became known by the name he used among the gentiles, Paul.
3. He was transformed into a nearly ideal servant of Jesus Christ.
4. We can learn how to serve not only from Jesus, but also from Paul’s example.
Main Idea: Paul exemplified a willingness to serve the Lord Jesus Christ, the principles of which apply to us in lesser but still important ways.
I. The Principle of EXPENDING Ourselves for the Kingdom (24-25)
A. A Christ-like ATTITUDE
1. Most of our sins are in the realm of attitude
2. Jesus said that it was “out of the heart” that sin arises (Mark 7)
3. Godliness also begins with attitude
B. Joining in Messiah’s SUFFERINGS
1. When God’s people suffer, in a sense, Jesus suffers; when Saul of Tarsus persecuted individual Christians, Jesus viewed it as persecuting him.
2. Acts 9:4, And falling to the ground he heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?”
3. Being concerned for the persecuted church is concern for Jesus.
4. Jesus atoned for all our sins on cross; our sufferings do not add to that. Our sufferings not to atone, but to get word out about his atonement. & thus our sufferings add to Christ’s sufferings, same mission, redemption of mankind.
C. Fulfilling the RESPONSIBILITIES God gives us
1. Stewardship is managing a household. Our lives are a stewardship.
2. All of us have three resources to balance: time, money, and energy.
3. All gifted for some sort of ministry… helping (video)… mercy (visiting)
4. New research: average user spends 23 hours a week emailing, texting and using social media. We seem busier because of it. [source: businessnewsdaily.com]