“Domesticated” sermon preached on May 22, 2011


Introduction: The last few months

There has to be more.

I am not satisfied with the way it’s been.

Not satisfied with just getting by (by be ‘good enough’)

 

I want more; but to have more, you have to give more

‘I’m tired spiritually, I feel like I am chasing the wrong things.’

‘I’m tired of hearing stories and testimonies; I want to be part of a story and a testimony’

I want more!

 

I believe at times that we are ‘spiritually paralyzed’

We have domesticated the gospel.

Illustration: Domesticated (house trained) cats and dogs

                They are controlled and caged. (pee in a little box)

                                They at one time were wild and free.

Illustration: Show pic of cat and lion

He is not a domestic cat, HE is a roaring lion.

Which one is HE to you?

 

We try to domesticate God:

-hold Him back, cage up in our little boxes, we try to control Him

 

God is NOT ‘boring’

The way we live makes Him boring.

I f our lives are supposed to reflect God, then are reflecting Him as boring?

How are others viewing God through us?

 

Hebrews 12:29 (NASB) “For our God is a consuming fire.”

 

We feel at times that God is holding us back but I think it’s the other way around.

-I think at times we are trying to hold Him back, control Him; keep it our way.

“We are holding Him back from doing things through us.”

 

What if we really allowed God to be and to do what he wants?

-In our life, church, family, work, finances, heart,

 

How would that look? How would that change your life?

 

What holds us back?

 

  1. 1.       FEAR (worship)

What are we afraid of?  (Others opinions, made fun of, looking dumb, ect)

Fear cripples and paralyzes us”

Fear in scripture (describing God) is not the same as being scared.

FEAR=to stand in awe and wonder; to be amazed

Illustration: Sun

                -It could destroy us-so hot, it could explode-burn our skin and eyes

                BUT, it also gives us light, warmth and growth

 

This is like the fear of God-yes it could kill us ad destroy our lives; but He also gives us warmth, light and growth.

Ecclesiastes 12:13 “Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole [duty] of man”.

 

Deuteronomy 13:4 (NLT) Serve only the LORD your God and fear him alone. Obey his commands, listen to his voice, and cling to him.

 

Fear God and Keep His Commands!

                What’s the most frequent command in scripture?

Is it to be good? Moral? Holy?……

FEAR NOT! (Don’t be afraid)  Is a Command! (over 50 verses in scripture)

Most frequent in scripture (by God, angels, by Jesus)

That’s healthy fear: amazed by its size, what He can do: doing what He commands!

 

What you ‘fear’ is what you worship.

-whatever consumes your mind, thoughts, stress, money

Fear nothing but God!

 

You Worship what consumes you.

Some people worship ‘worry’ and ‘stress’ (that’s what consumes them)

Does God consume you?

 

We are told more than any other command in the Bible NOT to fear!  It’s over and over in scripture.

2 Timothy 1:7 “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”
Isiah 41:10

 

  1. ‘Worst case scenario’ mode.    

You are lifting your stress and worry higher than your trust in Him

Worry does not change the outcome. (Just gives you a negative attitude-does not help)

Worry is the opposite of trusting in God (Atheists worry)

Most of the things we worry about do not even happen.

 

I don’t believe as Christians that we are called to live in “worst case scenario”

Many people live in “What if’s” (negative)

I believe we are called to have ‘HOPE”

HOPE says, Rom 8:28 “That God causes all things work to together for the good for those who love God”

 

->Not living in ‘doom and gloom

I believe we need to be “aware of what’s going on” (news, around the world)

-We are not supposed to be ignorant!

God wants us to be aware but not living in worst case-not stressed!

 

Philippians 4:6 “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God”.

 

  1. 3.       Over thinking

                “Over analysis leads to spiritual paralysis”

So many think it through so long and try to figure it out but don’t end up doing anything.

-Imprisoned by their thinking

If we think and worry too much about the outcome, we will become too afraid to take the step (risk)

Peter walking on water: He just stepped out towards Jesus (He not over thinks it)

Illustration: Waiting and thinking (building up worst case) before jumping

                -off a diving board, out of a plane, on a fun ride….we build up our worry.

 

Matthew 6:33 “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you”.

                Don’t focus on the problem, focus on the solution (the answer)

                                The answer is Him!

We need to pursue Him!

 

We need to be people of prayer

What if, instead of talking, complaining and getting stressed, we started praying?

Illustration: Nehemiah

                All his prayers were answered. He prayed before he did anything.

                                (seek ye first)

We need to renew our minds. We need to change our ‘what ifs’.

I don’t think Jesus lived in ‘worst case’

                 “Pray like it depends on God and work like it depends on you”

 

Imagine the possibilities

What if your friend was healed? (Lowering them through the roof)

What if God showed up in all the churches in the area and revival broke out?

What if Miracles did happen?

                What if your prayers were answered?

What if your prodigal child came to the Lord? (Imagine them worshiping next you)

                What if your co-worker gets saved?

 

What if? Imagine!

 

Is this spiritual life real to you? (Like a fairy tale)

Illustration: kids playing life: wedding scene and church scene

                It was cute.

Lord said, “A lot of us are just playing church.”

 

I want more than just playing church.

Are you really living like He is real to you?

 

What you ‘worship’ will consume.

-does God consume you?

“If you are not burning, then we are drying”

I want more.

“Not just more games, more services, more programs…..I want more of Him”

 

Many of us have settled for “Imitation” (cheap grace)

-accepted the easy grace theology and easy Christianity.

-does not cost much

Many people just want a ‘good’ ‘happy’ life

 

Jesus did not come for us to “Just” make it by.

“Good enough”

 

There is more.

Lay it down, break it-learn to trust Him.

What if you gave it all?

Mary and the alabaster:

Mark 14:1-9 Jesus the Anointed

 

“Now the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread were only two days away, and the chief priests and the teachers of the law were looking for some sly way to arrest Jesus and kill him. [2]“But not during the Feast,” they said, “or the people may riot.”  [3] While he was in Bethany, reclining at the table in the home of a man known as Simon the Leper, a woman came with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, made of pure nard. She broke the jar and poured the perfume on his head.  [4] Some of those present were saying indignantly to one another, “Why this waste of perfume? [5] It could have been sold for more than a year’s wages and the money given to the poor.” And they rebuked her harshly.  [6] “Leave her alone,” said Jesus. “Why are you bothering her? She has done a beautiful thing to me. [7] The poor you will always have with you, and you can help them any time you want. But you will not always have me. [8] She did what she could. She poured perfume on my body beforehand to prepare for my burial. [9] I tell you the truth, wherever the gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.” (Mark 14:1-9)

 

She believed in the ‘what if’ (possibilities of hope)

 

She was a young lady-It was her life savings (her inheritance), what she got from her parents

-It symbolized her past life and future hope.

 

She is the only one that believed what Jesus said about His death.

She is the only one that prepared for burial (disciples did not)

She gave all she had! (it was her future and past) Lay your life down.

She SMELLED like Jesus

“In order to have more, you have to give more”.

                She desired more of Him….Her commitment to Him was greater than anything else.

This was one of the greatest acts of worship

WHY NOT? (approach)

What would happen if…..?

What would happen if we had a prayer meeting and God came suddenly?

What would happen if we met at a certain time and said we are not leaving until God does something?

What would happen if I was really on fire for God?

What would happen if I laid every single thing down? I am going after you!

What would happen if I did not care about the world’s opinion of my life?

What would happen if we did not worry about the clock or our lunch or our schedule and we just wanted to meet with God?

What would happen if the children’s church starting having kids give prophetic words and lay hands on friends and be healed?

What if we really took God seriously and laid it all down and took up our cross and followed?

 

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