Charles Spurgeon, in his book The Soul Winner, says: A soul winner can do nothing without God. He must cast himself on the Invisible, or be a laughingstock to the devil, who regards with utter disdain all who think to subdue human nature with mere words and arguments.
In all of your goings this week, as you come across people that God has intentionally placed in your path, remember that you cannot change the heart of the person that you are talking to but the Holy Spirit can. You are the planter of seeds. Plant wide and long. Spread the seeds of the gospel as a farmer spreads seed in his fields. I am praying for you that God will embolden you and ignite a fire within you that you may be strong and courageous and fear nothing.
Here are the notes from Sunday’s sermon:
The text for this sermon comes from Genesis 33 and Psalm 19. The title of this sermon is: Embrace the Process.
We are all in process. We are on a journey to becoming mature in Christ. Maturity is tied to obedience.
From the moment of your salvation, you enter a process. The reason you are still here is because God is still working in you.
God just changed Jacob’s name to Israel and a challenge lies in front of him. He looks up and sees Esau coming with 400 men.
One step forward: Jacob reconciles with Esau. There is this exchange in conversation that happens.
One step back: Jacob tells Esau that he will meet him in Seir. Jacob does not go to Seir but instead goes to Succoth. He builds a house and booths for his livestock. This is not something that happens in a day. He was there for awhile. Problem: God never told Jacob to go to Succoth. God told Jacob to go to Bethel.
Second step back: Jacob leaves Succoth and moves to Shechem. Jacob keeps going in the opposite direction that God told him to go. Jacob buys land and sets up his tent there.
The process of becoming a disciple takes time. We have an advantage over Jacob. Jacob had no mentor. There was no one to come alongside him and tell him that he needed to live a new life because God had given him a new name.
The journey defines us, shapes us, and reveals our calling. Becoming a disciple is about a long obedience in the same direction.
There is no overnight formula for transformation.
If your story is anything like mine, after you became a Christian, your journey has been a long and slow process. No one came alongside me and no one mentored me or offered to teach me how to live this life that Jesus has called us to live.
If you are left alone to figure it out on your own, it is a very long road.
There will be times of victory and frustration with yourself during your journey. The more obedient and faithful that you become, the more you come to realize you are still far from the goal.
We are told in Colossians 2:6-7, “As you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him, and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.
The hard part is not learning. It is obedience.
You have to want to grow. You have to want to learn and obey. We are called to obey, not just talk about it. Learning should fuel obedience. Obedience forms maturity. Maturity forms a godly character.
Our Creator is the One who molds and shapes us. He designed us. He gave us our identity in Christ. We were made in His image for His glory.
There is a problem that we have yet to consider: You are your own worst enemy. You can resist growth. You can push back against change. You build walls and shut doors so that no one can come in. You can ignore the Holy Spirit and think that you have all your crap together because you obviously know better than God.
It doesn’t have to be that way. Resist the temptation to resist change. Fight back against the thought of ignoring the Holy Spirit. He will always lead you in accordance to Scripture exactly where you are supposed to go. It may not be where you want to go but it is where you are supposed to be.
Becoming a disciple allows you to leave a legacy. There are people that God intentionally puts in your path so that you can pour your life out into theirs. You know that you are making disciples when you see those lives begin to flourish in obedience to Jesus.
To become a disciple maker, you have to first be a disciple. You cannot make disciples if you are not one.
You must stay faithful. You are being made in the refiner’s fire.
Right now God is defining and refining who you are created to be, and what He’s called you to do.
Right in the middle of the journey is where you are supposed to be.
You were created to make much of Jesus and you were made for his renown. Your Redeemer King has given you exactly what you need to learn, grow and accomplish everything that he has put in you to accomplish. You have exactly what you need to pour into the lives of others.
You can be everything that God created you to be. You just have to listen and follow the leading of the Holy Spirit and…embrace the process.
I LOVE MY CHURCH!