Summary: To live the Christian life mean there are some qualities we must develop. Here are 4 - that is, if we desire God's blessing.
What Am I to “Become?”
* Years ago, one of the most often asked question to little children was, “What do you want to be when you grow up.” Depending on the child, the answer could change a couple of times every day. This thinking weight heavily on our word today.
* (TEXT CALL) Last week we began a series of messages called ‘Blessed or Busted’. While most of us desire to be blessed, we must put ourselves in a position to receive blessings from God. (We’re talking about being ‘under the spout where the GLORY runs out’) All of us desire to be blessed of God, while certainly no one wants to be cursed by God. Last week, we began with the 4 “BE’S”. Be sure of our salvation, be passionate in our worship, be godly in our priorities, and be spiritual in our prayers. Today, let’s talk about ‘becoming.’ God has us on the developmental plan.
* (TEXT) The question is, what are we to become? In pro-sports, most team today have ‘farm-systems’. These are where a player can go, get some playing time and mature into their potential. This is God’s plan for us.
1. Become a purveyor of grace – The word purveyor is a seldom used word, but it is accurate in this case. A purveyor is a supplier, an outlet, a source, a spreader, and a ‘transmitter’ and this is exactly what we should be. Consider verse 7 (read). As believers, we instinctively realize that we have been given ‘grace.’ To receive God’s grace is huge, but we don’t just receive enough grace for us, for according this verse, we receive grace according to the size, the amount, or the measure of grace which the Savior has. Does HE pour all that He has on us at one time? No. He gives ample supply and once we are HIS, that supply of grace to us NEVER runs out. So we have grace – then we give grace, so we receive grace – so we give grace, so we receive grace – so we give grace. We are to become a conduit or a purveyor of grace.
* So what exactly does this mean? I submit it requires a reformation of our behavior. At salvation, this IS a fundamental change in one’s life. We call this transformation. Literally, God comes in and takes over. The new believer is under new ownership and management. He has received grace (that which He didn’t deserve) in the form of forgiveness, a personal relationship to God through Jesus, and a companion or counselor in the person of the Holy Spirit (who becomes your divine conscience). Under this new management, the most natural thing in life is that things change. Behaviors, decisions, attitudes, conversations, and more are controlled by a higher power. When we are tempted to return to that old habit, the divine counselor whispers in our ear warning us about our actions.
* When we are tempted to engage in malicious conversation we sense the urging that this is destructive and wrong. (By the way, some conversations are not as malicious as they are just plain hurtful). The list goes on & on.
* Yet, if we desire God’s blessing, our call is to realize the grace we have been given and then pass on the grace which God gives to us. This means when faced with a situation of asserting our personal desires, we become like Christ who, being God, refused to use HIS “God Status” to His own advantage but rather, took the lower road of becoming like us so that He could extend grace to each one of us. This is what God calls us to do. Where the rubber meets the road is found in those relationships that we have been wronged. Our knee-jerk reaction is to defend our turf and put someone in their place (and then feel ‘good’ about how we did it). I submit no one has wronged any of us worse than we have wronged God. And yet, our Lord has given so much grace to us that we don’t even have to face the consequences of our actions.
2. Become an encourager – Paul tells us to ‘walk worthy’ of our calling and to walk in humility, gentleness, and patience. If we walk worthy we will take about cue from the Apostle Paul who constantly spoke of being an encouragement to one another. In Acts 20, on the hills of the riot in Ephesus, Luke records that Paul sent for the disciple & encouraged them. Even in the face of personal trouble, Paul was encouraging the rest of the disciples. For the believer, there are times we have to reach deeply into our well of grace to encourage people when we are experiencing personal hurt. This is Paul’s example for us.