|Rev. Brian Wilkie|
Pastor of St. Andrew's Christian Community
|Rev. Joel Charles|
So what are we talking about when we talk about this purpose of God? How do we get this direction from God?
When we believe that God has a plan and a purpose for us we also understand that we are not responsible for the talents we were not given, but expected to make the most of what we have been given. So we get that direction when we choose to believe God has a plan.
God has a purpose. But very important is also the matter off surrendering to God's control. The Scripture says, "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and love your neighbor as yourself." In other words, to be connected to God and with each other. We must understand that God is about relationship. He is all about relationships, so no matter your condition, no matter our circumstances, God always desires to be in relationships, be in relationships with us.
An interesting reality is that God desired a family. Imagine that God desired a family! So to make that happen he sent Jesus Christ to earth.
So when we surrender to God's control by accepting Jesus Christ as Savior we become part of God's family. I believe that a truly winning life, to have a truly winning year, we need to be surrendered to God's control. As humans we all have a God shaped hole in our lives and unfortunately we try to fill it with different things. That could be money, career, popularity, but I've I'm coming to realize that only a relationship with God through Jesus Christ brings peace and contentment.
So believing God has a purpose and surrendering to his control.
What are some of things that might hinder us? And let's be frank about this.
So that means then that the challenges we face, they are not to destroy us, the difficulties, but rather to build character. Characters not something you get, it is something you build. You build character as you face life and you make choices. It is said that good character helps you weather the storms of life, so character is key.
But we must also remember that feelings are not facts. What you feel is not a reality. Feeling something does not make it true! Feelings lie all the time, so it would be important then, I guess, for someone wondering, "Well how do I overcome that fear?"
Again they came to the Jordan River and the idea, the design and plan was to get to the other side, but once they stepped in the waters backed up. So you overcome fear by moving against you fear. Things won't always work out, but always keep the right perspective, never procrastinate, persevere. Move against that fear.
If they don't, I suppose, well those people actually did spend the rest of their lives doing somebody didn't want to do because they didn't move forward in the plan that God had for them. Certainly people. . .
Well I just want to go in it slightly different direction we talked about, but what if somebody has missed the boat? What if they have turned away in fear? Is it always 40 years in the wilderness after that, or what does God do with people when they failed?
It is never too late. You'd be amazed, the Scripture is full of examples of what God can do if we truly decide to trust him
Now we started to get into the topic, talking about when people have missed the boat: of some Christians who feel like they've let fear, or some fault, some lack of character interfere and ruin a plan that God had. But we serve a gracious God, we believe in a God who gives more than a second chance. So what about people who either have been walking with Christ but have stumbled along the way, or perhaps even some listeners who don't know Christ, who haven't actually received His grace in any way. At this point what's the story for them and their purpose?
A beautiful thing about Scripture, about Jesus coming to earth, is the concept of grace. The Bible says, "all things work together for good to those who love God and to those who are the called according to his purpose." When we grasp the reality that we live in a world flawed, a flawed world marred by sin - Listen - our world is broken. No relationship works perfectly, We don't always get it right all the time. Even the weather doesn't work perfectly, the economy doesn't work perfectly, our bodies don't work perfectly. That's why we pray "Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven!"
So the idea or the understanding is that Jesus has come to kind of shift the cards a little bit, to change the deck, to turn it around, to give us that winning hand. It is in him and through him, that even if we've missed it, when we come to him in genuine confession, genuine conversation, sincerity of heart, we will be amazed as to how he will take our errors, our failures, all of our mistakes and our quantities, and work them for something good that he has a designed us and destined us for.
I do know that in your life, in your ministry, you are really pursuing God's purpose for you. There is some sacrifice involved in that, there is discipline, attention and also I can see in your and in your life there is joy and there's this fulfillment in pursuing God. So thank you for sharing your heart and your mind with us today.
Would you like to bring this to close with prayer?
Father, thank you that you have a plan for each life. I ask that you draw each listening to a close relationship with you through your Son, Jesus Christ. Give strength, wisdom, healing, peace and favor to each listener. And Lord, we thank you for the many blessings we have. We ask that you bless our communities where we live and enable us to shine for you to have impact in this community. In Jesus name we pray, amen.
You yourselves know listening to this radio show is a very good way to learn from the Scriptures, but please add to that by worshipping in a church where the gospel is soundly proclaimed and lived out with compassion, integrity and resolve. Now to conclude our program I'd like to have you listen to an old hymn At the Cross, "At the Cross where I first saw the light."This is also by the singing group This Hope from their album a cappella hymns.