Summary: When is the last time you stopped to think about the WOW moments God has placed in your life? Consider these thoughts as our Family Minister walks us through several WOW moments in the life of the apostle John.
Our current sermon series is entitled “Words to Live By.” Last week, we talked about “Help.” Today, we’re going to look at the word, “Wow.” We’re going to look at how God acts in our lives and leaves us saying, “Wow!”
I was once told a story about a boy that was drawing a picture. When his father asked what he was drawing, he answered, “I’m drawing a picture of God.” The father told him, “But nobody knows what God looks like.” The boy smiled and responded, “They will when I get done!”
With that in mind, I came across these pictures that children have drawn in their efforts to describe God. (pic 1) God is a superhero for the world. (pic 2) I wish God would give radioactive powers. (pic 3) God’s got an invisible head & he floats in the garden. One side is night and the other side is day & God sees the owls & bunnies & butterflies. God also rides a motorcycle but he’s playing hockey in Pasadena right now. He can do everything! (pic 4) God has giant ears so he can hear everything we are saying. (pic 5) God doesn’t sleep because he watches over us all the time. (pic 6) God at his desk cloud. (pic 7) I included this one so I could check with Dr. Short if this is true. God lives inside every living thing. So my doctor has seen God when he cuts people open!
This sermon is going to be different from what we normally do. It’s going to be heavy on Scripture, light on explanation. The idea began as our ministers group met to plan sermon series and decided on these words to live by. Originally, today’s message was intended to be based on Revelation 4, but when Jeff and I sat down to adjust the schedule, we noticed the other words all were based on passages in Luke, so we decided to move to Luke 9. As I sat down to begin preparations, it caught my attention that both wow moments being described were witnessed by the apostle John. It got me wondering what other events may have left John going wow and I found several. When I put them in chronological order, I noticed they were lumped into three categories as John matured in his faith. God really got my attention, God really got me thinking, God really is worthy of my praise. Here we go!
The wow moments began with God really got my attention. Read Luke 5:4-7. Simon (Peter), Andrew, James, and John had spent all night fishing and caught nothing. Jesus convinced Peter to take Him out in the boat so he could teach, then told him where to put down the nets to catch fish. Peter tried to tell Him they’d had no luck, but decided to humor Jesus and let down the nets. The net filled with fish and he had to call the others to come help. Their ships almost sank there were so many fish. When they got to shore, Jesus told them to follow Him and He’d make them fishers of men. Wow!
Read Luke 8:40-42,49-56. Jesus was asked by Jairus to come heal his sick daughter. Jesus and the apostles went with him, but they received news that the girl had died before they could arrive. Jesus continued and took her parents, Peter, James, and John into the room and raised her from the dead. Wow!
Read Luke 9:28-36. Jesus took Peter, James, and John up on a mountain to pray, when Jesus’ appearance took on a heavenly form. Moses, representing the law, and Elijah, representing the prophets, appeared and began to talk with Jesus. Peter got all excited and offered to make three tents so they could house these representatives of the law, the prophets, and the messiah and remain to worship. That’s when they heard the voice of God Himself telling them to listen to Jesus, His Son. Wow!
The wow moments continued with God really got me thinking. Read Matthew 20:20-28. James’ and John’s mother approached Jesus and asked that He allow her sons to sit at his right hand and left hand as Jesus sits on his throne overseeing His kingdom. Jesus warns them that they don’t understand what they’re asking for and later tells the disciples that if they want to be great in the kingdom, they need to be servants of all. Wow!
Read Luke 9:49-50. Right after being told about this upside down kingdom, John informs Jesus that he tried to stop a man from casting out demons because he wasn’t following them. I think he expected an atta-boy and instead was told the one who is not against you is for you. Leave the man be. Wow!