Summary: This message is 3rd in a series of 4 messages that challenge the hearers to do "whatever it takes" to be the people that God has called them to be, and help their church be all that God would have it to be.
“WHATEVER IT TAKES” Luke 10:38-42
INTRO – The little girl’s father had just given her a silver dollar to put into her bank. She excitedly ran off to her room to "deposit" the coin. However, in a few minutes she returned and handed the silver coin back to her father.
"Daddy," she said sadly, "here’s your dollar back. I can’t get it into my bank." "Why not?" her concerned father asked. "It’s too full," she said, obviously disappointed.
Her father accompanied her back to her room and, sure enough, her bank was too full to accept even one more coin. It was filled with pennies!
Sometimes our lives are like that bank. So full of errands, obligations and activities that neither nurture us nor help anyone else, that there simply is no room left for what is truly important -- the silver dollars.
If we are going to be people who do whatever it takes to be the people that God desires for us to be and become the church that He desires for us to be, we are going to have to get rid of some of the “pennies” of our busy lives in order to make room for the “silver dollars”
Read a story that speaks to the busyness of our lives. It seems that Satan called a worldwide convention. In his opening address to his evil angels, he said, "We can’t keep the Christians from going to church. We can’t keep then from reading their Bibles & knowing the truth. We can’t even keep them from conservative values.
"But we can do something else. We can keep them from forming an intimate, abiding experience in Christ. If they gain that connection with Jesus, our power over them is broken. So let them go to church, let them have their conservative lifestyles, but steal their time, so they can’t gain that experience in Jesus Christ. This is what I want you to do, angels. Distract them from gaining hold of their Savior and maintaining that vital connection throughout their day!"
"How shall we do this?" shouted his angels.
"Keep them busy in the nonessentials of life and invent unnumbered schemes to occupy their minds," he answered. "Tempt them to spend, spend, spend, then, borrow, borrow, borrow. Convince the wives to go to work and the husbands to work 6 or 7 days a week, 10-12 hrs a day, so they can afford their lifestyles. Keep them from spending time with their children. As their family fragments, soon, their homes will offer no escape from the pressures of work.
"Overstimulate their minds so that they cannot hear that still small voice. Entice them to play the radio or cassette player whenever they drive, to keep the TV, the VCR, & their CDs going constantly in their homes. And see to it that every store and restaurant in the world plays music constantly. This will jam their minds and break that union with Christ.
"Fill their coffee tables with magazines & newspapers. Pound their minds with the news 24 hrs. a day. Invade their driving moments with order catalogues, and every kind of newsletter and promotional offering, free products, services, and false hopes."
"Even in their recreation, let them be excessive. Have them return from their recreation exhausted, disquieted and unprepared for the coming week. Don’t let them go out in nature. Send them to amusement parks, sporting events, and concerts instead.
"And when they meet for spiritual fellowship, involve them in gossip and small talk so that they leave with troubled consciences and unsettled emotion."
"Let them be involved in soul-winning. But crowd their lives with so many good causes they have no time to seek power from Christ. Soon they will be working in their own strength, sacrificing their health and family unity for the good of the cause."
It was quite a convention in the end. And the evil angels went eagerly to their assignments causing Christians everywhere to get busy, busy, busy and rush here and there. Has the devil been successful at his scheme? You be the judge.
If we are going to be WIT people, we must learn to survive & thrive in the midst of our busy lives. How can we do this?
I. LET CHRIST IN – v. 38
A. Martha opened her home to Jesus. Many times this story is told in way that contrasts Mary and Martha as though each believer must make a choice: a worker like Martha or a worshiper like Mary. Truth is that we all need to be workers AND worshipers!
a. To fulfill our WIT commitment we must be both workers and worshipers.
b. All have different personalities, gifts, and abilities. But does not mean that Christian life is and either/or situation – either a worker or a worshiper.