6/24/2006

Friday Night Lights...

Wow…Our church has a Friday Night Service. For the longest time (about a month or two) after I was hired, I missed it. Not on purpose, mind you. But, the last church that I worked at was a Saturday night, Sunday morning and evening service church. So, I honestly would forget that my new church had a Friday service. The good news is that we don’t do student services on Fridays. So it wasn’t as if I had to teach, but just didn’t show. I would be on the way to Barnes & Noble and pass by church and see all of these cars and ask myself, “What’s going on at church?” It’s then that I would realize that I had, once again, missed service.

I’m so glad that I didn’t miss tonight’s service. Tonight was the last week of the teaching series Sexual Wholeness. The message was titled Sexual Healing – Experiencing God’s Restorative Power In Your Life.

And yes, as soon as I walked in, I did begin to sing the Marvin Gay song.

Now, I should probably explain this before I go any farther. I don’t need sexual healing. But I do feel that there needs to be some restoration in my life in some places. The wonderful thing about our teaching pastor, Ed, is that he crafts his messages in such a way to allow room for God to speak to you, even if you aren’t dealing with exactly what the topic is. I felt like, even though he was speaking primarily about sexual healing, I could carry a lot of the principals out of the message and into my life, and apply them to the places where I need to be healed. Here’s some of the things that hit me pretty hard:

-We all work BROKEN STRATEGIES that yield PREDICTABLE RESULTS in relation to how we attempt to fix ourselves. So the real question is “Will you trust Jesus to heal (i.e. CHANGE) you? Ed told the story from John 5 about the man laying by the pool wanting to get in to be healed, but he couldn’t. Jesus asked him if he wanted to be healed. So many of us want to be healed, but we don’t want to change. We want God to take away our hang-ups, but we don’t want to move from where we’re at. We want to deal with our sin on our terms. Fortunately for us, that’s not the way that God works. If we want to be healed, we’ve got to be willing to change.

-Our brokenness can seem like our IDENTITY, but it’s not. And it doesn’t have to be. Sometimes, we get so dragged down into our own stuff, that we begin to associate it with our very being. We think that it’s a part of us. That without it, we wouldn’t be who we are. That’s just not the case. 1 Corinthians 6:11 speaks about our brokenness as a thing of the past. It says that we’ve been cleaned up and given a fresh start by Jesus, our Master, our Messiah, and by our God present in us, the Spirit.

-Just because we have a desire for something, doesn’t mean that it’s the best thing for us. We need to accept that we will go through life with many LEGITIMATE DESIRES UNFULLFILLED! A friend, whom I trust a great deal, once told me that God would not put a desire in me, that he would not fulfill. He said this, in relation to my perpetual state of singleness. But, according to this, there will be completely legitimate desires that I have, some of which are even good, that will go unfulfilled in my life. This makes me a little angry, but mostly it makes me scared.

On a side note, this morning I read in To Own a Dragon by Donald Miller, that when God doesn’t give us something that we want, it’s because it’s not something that we need. He talked about how, upon realizing this, it allowed him to trust God more. I think I need to trust God more too.

Great lesson as a part of a great service and time of worshipping before God. Just wanted to share it with you guys too…

1 comment:

marko said...

josh, i agree -- that was a fantastic sermon. wow. i LOVED that point about legitimate unfilled expectations.