Monday, April 19, 2010

Good News Monday

Yesterday PL's message titled "Where do I stand in this family?" really rocked. His sermon was based out of 1 John 2:12-14.

In order to know where we stand in the family of God, there are two things we need to know:

1.Know if you belong to this family
If you've already accepted Jesus as your savior then you are in Phase 1. You are learning about God. The next phase is Phase 2. That's where I am; applying all of the knowledge I have gained. And in the last Phase, Phase 3 you are mentoring others and leading them in a closer walk with God. The interesting thing about it is that the only time you are in only one phase is in Phase 1. Once you get into Phase 2, you will still continue to learn about God and when you get to Phase 3 you will be learning about God and hopefully still applying the knowledge you've accumulated.

I love my hubby's preaching style. His stories are always so vivid and never fail to make me laugh. Believe it or not, just like everyone else, I learn a lot about my pastor while sitting there listening to his sermon. He told us about the one time he showed up to play at a concert with an empty violin case. He and his mom had to take a taxi home to pick up the violin. At that moment, he was worried he would miss out on performing with the rest of his friends. PL said, "Faith is your violin. God is preparing a concert and you don't want to miss it."

2. Know your role in the family
Everyone has a role in the family of God and it's really important that as believers we know exactly what our role is. If we sit in church Sunday after Sunday and all we do is receive the word of God and don't do anything with it, we become spiritually obese. We are taking in too much and not giving out enough.

One way to know what your role is by learning your shape. SHAPE is an acronym for Spiritual Gifts, Heart, Abilities, Personality and Experiences. Spiritual gifts are those we receive once we accept Jesus as our savior. These are given to us to build up the body of Christ not for us to keep hidden without sharing nor so that we may become conceited but they are given to us for the benefit of others. They are listed in Romans 12:4-8 and 1 Corinthians 12:1-11.

Heart is short for our passion. It's about what you love to do. Abilities are those things we are naturally good at or have acquired a special skill to do. Personality goes into play when learning how to serve in the church simply because it is at the core of who you are. Are you shy and introverted or are you a center of attention kind of person who is energized when around others? And lastly are the experiences. Those things that you have lived through which make you who you are today. In 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 we are told that God is the father of compassion and comfort who comforts us in our troubles so that we can then comfort others. God NEVER lets your pain go to waste. And if you will allow him to use your past for his glory, you will see that it will have no power over you to hurt you and that in the end it was worth it.

However, it's not enough that we merely know our role in the family, we also have to be willing to act on our role in the family. In James 2:17 we are told, "Faith without works is dead." In other words, if you say you believe and don't do anything about it, then how valid is your faith? Do you really believe?

I loved this week's sermon but I gotta say that I am really pumped about next week's study. I will let you know why next week. ;)

12I write to you, dear children,
because your sins have been forgiven on account of his name.
13I write to you, fathers,
because you have known him who is from the beginning.
I write to you, young men,
because you have overcome the evil one.
I write to you, dear children,
because you have known the Father.
14I write to you, fathers,
because you have known him who is from the beginning.
I write to you, young men,
because you are strong,
and the word of God lives in you,
and you have overcome the evil one.
-1 John 2:12-14

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