Alive Wesleyan

Career (Change - Week 4)

February 25, 2019
Alive Wesleyan
Career (Change - Week 4)
Chapters
Alive Wesleyan
Career (Change - Week 4)
Feb 25, 2019
Alive Wesleyan
Show Notes Transcript

Grace.

 

Can something really change inside of me so that what comes out of me is different?

 

Whatever is going on in my life is coming from inside of me.

 

Spiritual formation — something new is being formed in me. Grace is coming in and as a result, Christ is coming out.

 Add notes

Can people really change in their careers?

 

John 3:16–17 (NIV84) 16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.

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How does Jesus IN me (Grace) change HOW (Vision, Intention, Strategy) I go to work and/or school (Real world)?

 

Occupation — this refers to our job.

Vocation — this refers to a calling (wherever you are, you leverage it for God).



Speaker 1:
0:01
Hey, good morning. Let's have word of prayer shared you. What's on my heart. Lord, thank you so much for these good folks, the high honor of being able to share them this morning. And Lord, I just pray as I pray every week that you would hide me in your cross so that we would all know that we're actually engaging with you in the next few moments. We're actually sensing you speaking to our hearts. Lord, I don't want, we don't want this to be just an exercise that we do weekend and week out and we lead the same, you know, we keep coming back cause we're, we desire the transformation and the insight of who we are. We want to love better, want to do life better, want to be bolder in our decisions and in our jobs and in our families and the way we do relationships.
Speaker 1:
0:40
And so Lord, all these things we just lay before you were here because honestly we need, we need you in our lives and so speak to us for the next few moments. I pray in your name. Amen. Well, welcome those in pleasant view. Of course. Welcome those in the chapel. Glad you are here. And those of you in the auditorium. So what I want to do is I want to kind of summarize where we've been because I keep going over these major pieces and I have this, I lay awake at night thinking did I get the major pieces communicated or not? And so what I want to do is I want to go over the major pieces again, that's charting us through this incredible difficult topic of change. And so when we started this, I illustrated it with, with, with a burden the cage. That's, that was the metaphor I used to try to describe what many of us are looking at and how we do life.
Speaker 1:
1:25
And I mentioned how much I love birds and that I like birds. And, and since then the number of communications I've received from you, people willing to give me your birds has been overwhelming really. And so that Kinda made me a clue. Maybe birds aren't all that, you know. And then some of you actually said, I'll give you my bird and my cat who so, so like you guys are sick. You need help, you know, that kind of thing. So, but, but a lot of folks did that. So what I'm attempting to communicate to that metaphor is this. I think some of us feel trapped in our lives and I think that's how some people do life. They just figured that everybody's supposed to be trapped and everybody's trapped and we're all sort of stuck on a perch, do the same thing day in and day out.
Speaker 1:
2:06
And we wonder if it's really making any differences. Our life, the existence does, are making money. Does it have an a big retirement? Is it, is it doesn't matter, is it, is it really something that's worth doing so to speak? And so we get stuck on a perch and we do the same thing day in and day out and we do it with the same dude or the same do debt and, or maybe we do it the same alone and we're all sitting in this birdcage do in our lives. We basically eat the same bird feed. I mean even the menu doesn't change much. And every day we do the same thing. And for a variety of reasons. We might say in this moment, you know, I do feel kind of stuck in my life right now. I do feel stuck and, and, and you may not be wrong about that.
Speaker 1:
2:47
You know, that may be a legit thing. You, you may really be stuck, but Jesus taught as near as I can tell, and you should read them for yourself to make your own decision. But everything Jesus taught essentially was, you don't have to be stuck. You don't have to live a stuck life and say, prove it. Well, this is one of them from Mark Jesus looked at the disciples said, with man, this is impossible. Pause right there just for a moment. What he's saying is this left to your own, left to yourself. This is impossible. If all you're going to do is chart your own path, this will be impossible. You are going to be a bird in a cage, left to your own, but with God, but not with God. He says with God, there's no limitation. There's no stuckness. There's no like wade that where there's no way out of this, but with God, apparently everything's now possible.
Speaker 1:
3:44
Everything comes back to the table and it's an important thing for us to grasp in our overly cultured society with God when he comes into the equation, this is game changing stuff. Everything now is different. What used to be just you is now you and God, and then he said this in John 10 10 the thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. So pause. If you feel in your life right now that something is working against you, if you feel no matter where you turn, you hit a wall or you have some kind of negative kind of experience are kind of, there's a plot against you and you just feel like you get up and you take one step forward and get knocked back. Two steps. Guess what Jesus is saying there is a plot against you. There is. That's a legit thing and so if you sense that and you just can't get your feet underneath, you can't get your legs underneath you because you feel like you're always getting knocked down.
Speaker 1:
4:41
Jesus says, that's exactly right because there's a plot to steal, kill and destroy, and we're trying to scare you. You know, I'm not trying to scare you. Jesus is saying this is just reality. But then he said, but I've actually come that you might have life. What kind of life out of the birdcage kind of life life where the doors open and you soar out life where you're not held captive by anything. And then there's the theme verse for this Particular Series We've been using how to Galatians and it's this, it's for freedom that Christ has set us free. So again, read your own Bible and figure it out for yourself. But everything I'm reading in scripture says we're not supposed to live captive lives. Birdcage lives, stand firm then. And don't let yourselves be burdened again by the yoke of slavery. For the longest time in my life, I don't know if, see if you agree. I kind of thought the freedom piece of faith was after I died or after my funeral. So like if I do a good job on this side, then I die. They have some nice words for me and put a nice box and I go in at then. Then after that, all of a sudden I'm free. But according to everything that I'm reading here that Jesus says, read for yourself, it's right there. Apparently there's freedom available pre funeral. If that wasn't true, why would he say then don't go back.
Speaker 1:
6:09
So whatever freedoms involved is actually pre funeral as well as post. We don't have to live burden a cage. And so the major theme word for the series that we've been going after has been this word grace and not cotton candy. Grace like nobody really knows what it is, but actually grace that has some teeth to it. And we divided grace into two different kinds. Just for our discussion. The first one was revealing grace. If you want to be free, well grace, God's grace reveals to us the things that we're holding onto that is something different than what God says is right and true.
Speaker 2:
6:47
Are you with me?
Speaker 1:
6:50
So, so what? What? What? What? This kind of grace is if you want freedom in a marriage, well look to see what he would reveal that you're holding onto. That's, that's different than what God says is right and true. Not about the other person, but about you. If you want freedom and self esteem or a look at what you're holding on to, that's different than what God says is right and true, that's, that's what God will reveal to you. You want freedom in a relationship that there's bitterness and callousness and no forgiveness and blah, blah, blah, but all that. Well, look at what God revealed to you, but what you're holding on to that is different than when he says is right in true, not what I say or what your Mama says or what your upbringing says. Not that what culture is saying,
Speaker 2:
7:37
okay,
Speaker 1:
7:38
but because we know that when we follow our path and define our own truth and we try to follow what we think the right thing is, we know what it produces. What. When we tried to follow what we think is right and true personal, it always produces shame and guilt because the longterm of Tom deciding what's right and true isn't a very positive thing. And probably if we had time to sit down and talk, you would tell me that about your life and I could tell you about my life. There was this moment, there's this relationship. There was a situation when I did what I wanted to do, dad gum it. That's Christian cuss word for me. You know dad gum and that's what I did. And then I would say, but you know what? I ended up picking the pieces of my life up. Not none of that. Pick up the pieces of that person's life and it produced shame and guilt. Revealing grace is God's speaking to the caged up areas of our lives and saying, hey,
Speaker 2:
8:35
yeah,
Speaker 1:
8:35
Tom, you can be free here and now. And that's an important thing for me to hear because if I could lead myself to freedom, I would have already done that.
Speaker 2:
8:48
Okay?
Speaker 1:
8:49
Right. I'm 52 years old. If I hadn't done it by now, then I'm not really connecting all synopsis or something. Something's off. But if I could change it, I would have already changed it. Well, that's the, that's kind of revealing. Great. So the second part of great, so this, it's restoring grace. So once these things are revealed, Tom, here's the things you're clinging to that are different than what God says is right and true. Then God begins to restore me, rebuild me from inside. And when that happens, he begins to gives me strength for what is outside. This is where God begins to change who I am inside of me. Not this outside except, but inside of me. He changes that this is where God takes what is fallen and corrupt and broken and sinful and makes it holy. I love when Bob Black Todd on our meeting about things, meat and potato series, and one of the things he said one night and one of his teachings was, he said that this is where we don't just get rid of cobwebs on the inside of who we are, but we actually had the spider killed. Things change forever. That's the marvelous, marvelous changing grace that is available to everybody. God takes what is dying, what is holding on to a burp up on a sitting on a perch in a cage and he makes it wholly alive in us. That's a beautiful thing,
Speaker 1:
10:18
but we're still in the cage.
Speaker 2:
10:20
Okay?
Speaker 1:
10:21
Restoring grace, revealing grace is a beautiful thing and part of our journey may be actually learning those things, but we're still in the cage. The door's been opened and freedoms available. I've probably, you saw scriptures say, well it must be true. God has done something in us and now we have to put skin in the game. And so the question we've been asking in the series is this, can something really change inside of me so that what comes out is different? Is that really possible?
Speaker 1:
11:00
Something changing inside of me so that anxiety doesn't come out. Something changed inside of me said anger doesn't slash out. So that discouragement doesn't come out or even some kind of sinful behavior doesn't come out. And there's an assumption behind this question that we all sort of have to own and it's going to make some of us uncomfortable, but here's my assumption behind this question and it's this what whatever's going on in my life is actually coming from something inside of me. Let me say it again. Whatever's going on in my life, I'm not talking about what I'm going to talk about, external stuff. Whatever's going on in my life right now is actually the result of something inside of me. I'm not suggesting uninvited. Things are coming from inside of us. Can't always control those externals that are bombard our lives, but I am suggesting this, our responses, our reactions, our motivations and our behaviors are shame producers are all coming ready from inside of us.
Speaker 2:
12:02
Yeah,
Speaker 1:
12:03
from that bird gauge, that's where they're coming from and I hear your pushback. Tom. You don't know my husband. You don't know my wife Tom. You don't know my friend group. Tom, you never met my parents. Tom, you don't know my children. Tom, you don't know my, my roommates and you're right. Let's just say they're all jerks. Okay. Let's just say, Yep, you're right. They're all nasty people, but how we respond to what our sometimes terrible circumstances, there's only coming from one place. It's not coming from something out there. How we respond to those terrible difficult trials is coming from inside of me and inside of you. Well, Jesus came to change that very thing and it's a process we're all invited to. It's a process we call spiritual formation and this is what I mean by just so there's no ambiguity because Christian pastors, we throw terms around and nobody knows.
Speaker 1:
13:01
Here's what I mean. Spiritual formation for me is something news being formed in me. Grace is coming in and as a result Christ is coming out is a more complicated in that probably, but I asked smart people about that, that this is Kinda my definition. This is what I would say has been happening in my life for 40 years. Something new is being formed in me. Notice that it's being formed. There's not completed yet. If you haven't noticed and then it's not completing the person you love the most either being formed in me. And grace is coming in, restoring, revealing grace. And as a result, Christ is coming out. That's what's happening. Now before I finish this series, I'm going to talk to you about how Jesus is our friend. And, and part of that new found freedom is in constant friendship with God. And I'll tell you what that means. This is all introduction. By the way. I'm gonna get to the message in a moment. This is all introduction. You think, man, I'm going to get a pack, a lunch. No, no, no, no. I shortened it. I shorted. It's going to be fine.
Speaker 1:
14:07
What it means is this ready? This may be why some of you here, I don't know if that's true. And then what it means is you and me, we are never alone because Jesus is always with you.
Speaker 2:
14:28
Yeah.
Speaker 1:
14:28
So let me get very specific. It's me and my spouse and Jesus with man. This is impossible with God. The Sky's the limit. It's me and my kid.
Speaker 2:
14:46
Okay?
Speaker 1:
14:46
And Jesus,
Speaker 1:
14:49
it's me. And my and Jesus, me and my boyfriend and Jesus, you're catching on. Okay, I'm gonna keep going because we're assuming like we're a little slow, so it's me and my illness. It's me and my addictions. Come on. Pleasant view chapel. Y'all better play. So me and my mental battles, me and my absent father, me and my alcoholic mother. You see what I'm saying? It used to be impossible, but now it's all possible freedom as possible and I'm certainly no expert on a friendship with Jesus and I'll tell you more about this and coming weeks. I believe friendships are unique when it comes to Jesus and a unique, his friendships in our lives, but we all relate differently. My friendship with Jesus starts ready for this. I don't know if this works for you, but my friendship with Jesus starts with this foundation that he totally accepts me.
Speaker 1:
15:43
That's where it starts. Warts and all, he accepts me. I don't believe Jesus hasn't done trial all the time. I used to believe that. I used to believe I would walk on thin ice whenever I screwed up. Jesus would kind of walk away. Then what a terrible idea for Jesus, but I used to leave. I don't believe that anymore. And so what that means is because I have total acceptance, it means that I can talk to Jesus randomly throughout the day and an and you would not be proud of your pastor's talking to Jesus randomly throughout the day because they're not often pastoral prayers. They're just real, God, I don't want to go in this meeting. I'm scared to death. What's going to come out?
Speaker 2:
16:19
Yeah,
Speaker 1:
16:20
God, strike that person dead. Just kidding. Don't do that. But I mean, I still felt it. I had to say it.
Speaker 2:
16:26
Okay.
Speaker 1:
16:27
I talked to him randomly. Sometimes I pray with others, but most of the time throughout the day I'm praying just me and my friend, me and Jesus with Jesus. All things are different. So today I want to look at applying all of these truths. All of this summer. I've just given you to this question, can people really change in their nine to five?
Speaker 2:
16:51
Okay?
Speaker 1:
16:51
Can people really change in their careers? Can people really change in their jobs? What they do? Nine to five. Every once in a while, here's somebody mentioned me in the lobby out there in the real, just say Tom, that's really cute. And then it's really good. But out in the real world, I mean this isn't gonna work and know that there's always, usually, usually it's respectful. I mean this is nice. I feel inspired, I like coming here, but getting in the real world, Jesus just doesn't work. And, and, and my response to that is always the same, is that Jesus wouldn't allow us to get away with compartmentally realizing our lives like that. I mean, if Jesus doesn't work in all situations, then he doesn't work at all and we'd be crazy to follow him. I mean, if he's really God and he can only work in this situation, then he's not really God anyway. So you shouldn't follow him. You should walk away.
Speaker 1:
17:37
But Jesus spoke clearly about this Tim self and probably the two most famous verses in the Bible. Jesus said, God so loved the world. Now just look, look at how many times that's mentioned. Just so you're clear. This is cosmos, the Greek word. And it means two things. One, it means all of creation, that kind of idea, but it also means all people. It means people. So it's a very grand picture in a very personal picture when the world is mentioned so, so God so loved the world and you could put your name there and be totally cool. Know Tom, you could put your name. There is for God so loved the world that he gave his only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. God didn't send his son into this world, not Jared, not church, non deprivate, evangelical conservative Christian world. God did not send his son into the world to condemn it, but actually save it. And for my purposes, I would say to actually let you get out of the birdcage. Jesus is referring to where we live and work. He's not just referring to our homes, he's not just referring to our Bible studies. He's referring to everything including where we live and where we work. Whoever is living in the world according to Jesus can have eternal life.
Speaker 1:
19:00
And what I've discovered is that that's probably most of us who are living in the world. So perhaps a better question I might ask is this one.
Speaker 2:
19:12
Yeah.
Speaker 1:
19:12
How does Jesus in me?
Speaker 2:
19:16
Okay.
Speaker 1:
19:17
Grace, restorative, healing, great change. How?
Speaker 2:
19:22
Yeah.
Speaker 1:
19:23
Vision, intent and strategy. I go to work and or school. How does Jesus in me change how I do my nine to five.
Speaker 2:
19:33
Okay.
Speaker 1:
19:34
And the vision can't be this Jesus and me and means I got to get a better job. That can't be the vision because what I've learned is jobs change a lot. A lot of people go to school to learn a certain job and then we're actually doing something now. They were never trained to do right. Jobs, careers change all the time. Grades Change. I mean eventually I promise you grades aren't even gonna matter, but they do right now in the very important, so all that kind of stuff, but all of those chains change. How about this? Can Jesus change me? See the only constant from one job to another. From the time that I was hanging ceilings and Turkey barns to the time when I was working at the laundromat cleaning out the laundry to the time I was loading trucks for work the next day, all the construction things.
Speaker 1:
20:19
I did all those jobs along the way and now the one I'm doing now for however long you let me stay here. All that kind of stuff can. Jesus actually changed me because the only constant in all those jobs and all those grades isn't me follow and you're the only constant as well. It's just you and Jesus is more concerned about who I am in whatever job I am. Then whatever job I have said again, Jesus is more concerned about who I am in whatever job I have. Then whatever job I have, he's more concerned about who I am. So let me just make this distinction. When we're talking about occupation, this actually refers to our job. This is what occupies our time, but when I'm talking about vocation, which is where we're going to go from here on out, this refers to two what we're called to.
Speaker 2:
21:09
Okay.
Speaker 1:
21:10
Now when I'm speaking of calling, I'm not saying like God showed up in a burning Bush thing for you. I'm not saying that. I'm saying wherever you are, you leverage it for Jesus and you understand that's your vocation. Let me say again, so occupations what I'm going to get paid to do, but vocation, this refers to wherever I am, whatever I'm doing, God shows up and I leverage it for God. Do you follow? Do you see the distinction? Everybody in the room has some kind of occupation. It might be stay home, might be whatever, and you have vocation. What you do and how you leverage it for God. Can people really change in our, in our career? I think so because this is the change variable and this is how the bird gets out of the cage.
Speaker 1:
22:07
Shining example of this is a someone who had a crummy occupation but a spectacular vocation. This is the guy, his name was Nicholas Herman, who was born in France, 1611. He was a soldier who was injured in battle and that injury was actually to his foot, resulted in this crippling disability that he was, he was let go from the military and he became, um, a footman, which is someone who helped people get in out of horse drawn carriage is back in the day at the age of 40. Nicholas has this God moment that you can read it for yourself, but this deep experience with God that actually led him to believe that he should become a monk. And so, so he joined this monastery and his occupation at the monastery was to work in the kitchen, but not just the front kitchen. He actually worked in what they called the back kitchen. So that's where you cleaned the dishes, peeled potatoes. That was the thankless jobs. That was like where you scrape the eggs off people's plates, you know, and you, you don't follow. So it wasn't even like the front where you're serving people. It was the back. He actually never saw Nicholas Herman. He was in the back.
Speaker 1:
23:18
So he joins his monastery, his occupation, the monasteries in the kitchen working in the back of the kitchen, scraping pans. In fact, he referred to himself. He said, I am the Lord of pots and pans. I love that guy's attitude. I mean, that'd be great to get tee shirts at alive. We are the lords of pots and pans and we'd get an email. But anyway, that, that's what he did. And so he scraped the eggs off the dishes and pans. And as a result, because he was in the back of the kitchen, he, it was kind of this thankless job. Nobody even thought about, well, who's doing the dishes or whose scraping pans and all that of stuff toward the end of his life, get this part of his job at the monastery. It was actually to repair sandals for the other people in the monastery who could walk.
Speaker 2:
24:01
Okay.
Speaker 1:
24:02
He couldn't even, he was crippled. And so he would repair the sandals for the people. Those who weren't, nobody would have imagined that this poor, humble man would actually become world famous after he died. And he was known to the world as a guy by the name of brother Lawrence. You can read his book, um, practicing the presence of God and get on Amazon for cheap. In fact, there's probably a link in the sermon notes for you to go get it, even if you want to now. And it's good. It's a good perspective. But how did it happen? Well, brother Lawrence lived in such a way, he developed a simple way of praying from his heart when he called practicing the presence of God vocation. He lived in such a way and he learned to commune with God continuously, not just in church services and not just when he was taking the sacrament or not just impersonal devotion, but he learned how to commune with God, leveraging all of who he is for God when he was cleaning the kitchen and peeling potatoes and repairing sandals. And that's a beautiful thing for me. His genuine spirit and cheerfulness and peace attracted people within his community to come find him out in the kitchen and share with him.
Speaker 2:
25:17
Okay,
Speaker 1:
25:18
keep in mind with this guy does. There'd be no reason any of you would drive on the way home to find someone working in the back of one of the kitchens of our local restaurants to talk to them. That's what was happening, so people would go out of the way to find him within the monastery because of that vocation. Eventually people in the community heard about him and they would seek him out. They'd come into the monastery and come in the front gates and they'd see the father and all the different folks and important folks of the margin and they worked their way back to the kitchen and not stop at the front of the kitchen and go to the back of the kitchen where the dudes back there working and talk to him. Sharer seek his counsel and his prayers.
Speaker 2:
26:01
Okay.
Speaker 1:
26:02
Eventually people, bunch you. People from other parts of France would come and try to find him to talk to this dude. What did he do? He was chief potato pillar lords of pots and pans. People from around other parts of France, common people and church leaders are like rote or visited the kitchen
Speaker 1:
26:25
looking for spiritual guidance. Brother Lawrence dies in 1691 and the monks he lived with gathered as many of the monks letters as they could find and along with conversations that people were calling in our meetings with him and they put together a book and in 1692 they were published in this book called practicing the presence of God, the practice of the presence of God and that amazing, you should check it out if you haven't read it. Don't sit there and read the whole thing cover to cover. I mean it may just be good to kind of take like a vitamin, but practicing the presence of God. Let me just give you a little taste of what he did. This is from brother Lawrence's perspective on life and I'll just, I did my best to pick out a couple of quotes just to kind of show you what each kind of guy he was. Oh, if we but knew the need we have for God's presence. If we could only see how greatly we need the Lord's assistance and everything, if we could really see how helpless we are without him, we would never lose sight of him. Not even for a moment.
Speaker 1:
27:26
Peeling potatoes, lord of pots and pans.
Speaker 2:
27:29
Yeah.
Speaker 1:
27:29
There's another one. The time of business does not differ with me from the time of prayer. Did you hear that?
Speaker 2:
27:37
Yeah.
Speaker 1:
27:38
The time of being stretched out, working, driving crazy nuts, pedal to the metal kind of thing doesn't differ from me. From the time of prayer and in the noise and clatter of my kitchen, while several persons aren't the same time calling for different things. Does that sound like a lot like life? He didn't even have a cell phone back then. Can you imagine if he had that to add to it? All these people asking for things and all these who had all these kids, you know, all that kind of happening. He says, I possess God in his great a train quality as if our upon my knees at the blessed sacrament. That dude, I want to know more about him. What did he get right? I would suggest vocation. You see, his occupation was to wash dirty dishes and fry eggs, repair sandals, but his vocation was to love and be loved by Jesus. And seeing people believe that Jesus loves them as well. That's a good vocation. Guess what? It's yours too. And that's the question I get out of this particular topic. What's your vocation?
Speaker 2:
28:48
You okay?
Speaker 1:
28:49
Not, not, not someone scene. What is your vocation? Not your job, because that may be temporary. It may not be, but what is your mission? What is your purpose? What is your calling on your life? How are you leveraging? This is the way I sat in my home, but how are you leveraging everything in the corporation of Tom for God? That's vocation and all of us have it. So let's just see if we can sort of apply the change paradigm to the vocation part of our lives. And to do that, I want to make an assumption and then an application. Here's the assumption, and it comes under the grace part of the change paradigm. If we believe that God loves us,
Speaker 2:
29:37
okay.
Speaker 1:
29:38
If we believe Jesus desires to set us free, if we believe Jesus can restore us to God and then it has saved than it is safe to make this assumption, we believe grace didn't just save us, but it is now changing us on the inside. That's the first assumption and you've got to ask yourself, is this true for me?
Speaker 2:
30:01
Okay,
Speaker 1:
30:01
do I believe grace didn't just save me but it's actually now changing me on the inside. Once you kind of agree with this assumption and it isn't an assumption in my life, well if you agree with me on this assumption, then the application is fairly simple, then grace has to actually change our vision for our lives. Then grace actually has to change the vision for our lives. If grace, then our vision is different. If grace than our jobs in the schools we attend in the homes we care for in their retirement, we enjoy and the purpose for why we are here and where we are are all impacted by that grace that's changing us on the inside. Here's what I struggle with all week. For some of you, you don't need me today.
Speaker 2:
30:51
Yeah.
Speaker 1:
30:52
You don't even need this message. You could have skipped this part.
Speaker 2:
30:56
Yeah,
Speaker 1:
30:57
because Jesus has already been speaking to you about how he wants to leverage everything in the corporation. Have you for a specific task or specific calling and he's been knocking on the door of your vocation, how you're leveraging who you are and what you have for God and maybe even he's thrown open the door of opportunity and you've been trying to hold the door shot, then you don't need me. Your issue is between you and God. Maybe it's a call to ministry. I don't know. Maybe you have a legit call to ministry that God is saying, Hey, I could really use you on the platform. I could use you leading a church. I can lead you leading worship. I could use you. Leading children may be an actual call to ministry and you've been holding the door shut and I'll tell you why because everybody loves the bird cage. I love my bird cage. It's safe. It's predictable. It's nine to five and I'm in control there. There's no risk.
Speaker 2:
32:01
Okay?
Speaker 1:
32:02
But when you step out into ministry, when you step out into that vocation, if that's what God's calling you to, I don't know if that's true or not. I'm just some reason sense it stronger today than I normally, if that's, if that's kind of what God is doing for you, it will mean you leaving the safety of the stick and bird cage and resigning or changing your career or changing the path because God is calling you and you know it.
Speaker 2:
32:29
Yeah,
Speaker 1:
32:30
and it's a scary place to be because I've done that and you leave the place where you have certain amount of influence and you leave a certain amount of income and all because you feel like God is asking you to leverage. It may not be God is calling you to ministry, but maybe God has just asked you to leverage all that is in the corporation of you for his glory and you haven't done it. You're still sitting on the perch. Sometimes people will seek me out, usually college kids and they're stressed. They're worried over what God wants, what God's call is for the life. Let me put your mind at rest right now. God wants disciples to make disciples. That's God's call on our lives. That's it. That's it. There's nothing else you're calling my calling is the same. He wants disciples who make disciples. Does that mean I gotta go in like evangelize the whole plant where I work? No, not necessarily. Maybe it's all in how you scrubbing the pots and pans. I am afraid the modern church is more stressed over our occupation and we are over our vocation over what we're doing to leverage what we have for God.
Speaker 1:
34:01
And we're laying awake at night over an occupation. All the while God is saying, Hey, what are you doing to leverage what you have for me? We can have grace and we can even have vision, but until we decide, nothing will change. Nothing changes. And some of us in the room and some of us watching had been absolutely wrecked by God's grace and the vision he has laid on our hearts. This Day has formed this tension inside of us between what we know and what is comfortable to what is unknown, but freedom based on what Jesus says is right and true. What are you going to do? Intention to me always ends up looking like this fork in the road. You go left and life will go as you have planned and that's probably where some of you, maybe I don't have to change anything. I'm just going to stay on this path. You can stay on the perch, but if you go right, everything will be different for some, your intention might be in this in our context to join the four d process that the discipleship teams put together where you learn your spiritual gifts and your personality and place that you could serve. Maybe as part of it
Speaker 2:
35:29
strategy,
Speaker 1:
35:31
what am I going to do in my vocation now that I've decided to follow Jesus and he's changing on the inside set another way I could say it like this. How can I leverage where God has placed me? Think about it. Where has God placed you? Only you can answer that question. Only you where you work, your home, your roles in life. How can you leverage where God has placed you and how God has blessed you
Speaker 2:
36:05
for God?
Speaker 1:
36:08
Wouldn't that be a great thing to chew on for this particular Sunday?
Speaker 2:
36:12
Yeah,
Speaker 1:
36:13
come on. Give me a little feedback. Would that be a good thing for you to chew on for this particular Sunday? Just sit at home and think, what could we do? How could I leverage if I have received that grace? I think that's the most important question of our jobs. Careers and studies. Whatever you do as an occupation, do it in a way that reflects Christ being formed in you. So what comes out of you to other people? Is Jesus? Just one more lengthy quote from brother Lawrence. This is one of the final letters he wrote before he died,
Speaker 2:
36:49
says this,
Speaker 1:
36:51
dear Christian friend, it is paradise to suffer with the Lord.
Speaker 2:
36:58
What?
Speaker 1:
37:00
What are you smoking, brother Lawrence? What are you talking about? That perspective is so different, dear Christian friend, that is paradise to suffer with the Lord, it is possible to be with him under any conditions,
Speaker 2:
37:16
okay?
Speaker 1:
37:17
Even your job situation, even mine, even your home situation, even mind, it is possible for us to live in the very sense of the Lord's presence under even the most difficult circumstances.
Speaker 2:
37:29
Okay?
Speaker 1:
37:29
If you and I are going to enjoy the peace, a paradise during this life, we must become accustomed to a familiar, humble and very affectionate conversation with the Lord Jesus. You must stop your spirit from wandering from the Lord no matter what the circumstances
Speaker 2:
37:48
are.
Speaker 1:
37:50
So again, there's, let me ask, how's your vocation?
Speaker 1:
37:57
How are you leveraging everything that is who you are for God? How are you leveraging his blessing on your life for him in whatever situation you're in because that is truly possible for that to change. Jesus. Thank you so much for these good people. Thank you for the high honor of being able to share with them this morning and I pray that you would use these words here, chapel down pleasant view. He used these words to speak to our folks that are part of the live community. Lord, we desire to be a place where people find their vocation, they their calling, they find the thing or that makes the difference in their lives. They find the thing that changes who they are and they're able to leverage their situation. Lord, brother Lawrence was pots and pans and yet he, you used him to near continue to use him to change the world. What was so special or so unique? Lord, I just believe that you're not done and I believe you desire to use people all in the live community. I just, I think you desire to use them to leverage all that they are for you, but it's gonna require them leaving some very comfortable things behind. It's going to require a stepping out of some birdcage areas of our lives can require us taking a step of love. In a relationship, maybe in a career change.
Speaker 1:
39:31
And so Lord, I ask that you would be our pastor, that you would speak to us, that you would lay up on our hearts, our takeaway from this moment in your name. Amen.
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