Part 4 of 4, #blessed Series
It’s Not about Us, but It starts with Us. We are here for larger reasons than ourselves. We have been blessed for a larger purpose than ourselves. We have been blessed with a Mission.
When we are willing to lay down our pride and release our control, bigger and better things can take place. Following Christ and the life of Faith is bigger than our preferences, than our thoughts and ideas. It is larger than our definitions and even our wildest dreams. It is not about us. It’s for us, but not about us.
It is about Jesus. Jesus died and rose again to do much more than make us FEEL better about ourselves. He gave His everything to make us whole, to rescue us, and restore us. If we are ever going to realize the power of that sacrifice in our community, then we must also lay down our lives. We must learn to sacrifice, give, plan, go and PRAY, PRAY, PRAY!
Our Mission to Unify!
Philippians 2:1-2 (NLT) Is there any encouragement from belonging to Christ? Any comfort from his love? Any fellowship together in the Spirit? Are your hearts tender and compassionate? 2 Then make me truly happy by agreeing wholeheartedly with each other, loving one another, and working together with one mind and purpose.
We can learn to AGREE with each other. The agreement Paul points to is that of purpose. Even Paul had a sharp disagreement with Barnabas over a guy named Mark. But even when the argument was intense they never lost sight of their purpose. If we would agree that making Jesus known is job number one, we could work in unity.
We can learn to LOVE each other. It sounds challenging, but loving each other is easy if we simply love God FIRST.
1 John 4:10 (NLT) This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.
If there is a secret to loving God, it is that we learn to be loved BY God. We often attempt to love God by trying to do stuff for God. We would discover His Love much more quickly if we set out to learn that we are loved by God. When we know that we are loved, we tend to love others well.
We can learn to WORK together if we will only think like Jesus. Who can do that? Who can know God’s thoughts? Who has His mind? We do!
1 Corinthians 2:16 (NLT) “Who can know the Lord’s thoughts? Who knows enough to teach him?” But we understand these things, for we have the mind of Christ.
Our Mission to Exemplify!
Philippians 2:3-5 (NLT) Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. 4 Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. 5 You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.
When we draw close to God in humility, we become an example, a representation of Jesus. What is Humility? It is confidence. It is not timidity. The Cross of Jesus grants us bold and confident access to God. So humility is reliance upon the nature of God. It provides us with security instead of insecurity. Humility is also joy! It knows that God is in control! When trouble comes, blessings are sure to follow.
James 4:7-8 (NLT) So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world.
Closeness to God enables us to resist the Devil. We have an enemy that is trying to pull us away from God. He wants us stressed out and trying to control our world. But God is in control and He is peace, love, and gentleness. These are experiences that our enemy prefers we not enjoy.
Closeness with God will also better prepare us to Obey God. We best represent Jesus when we hear and obey our Father as He did. If we could learn to ask the question, “How could I obey God in this circumstance?” Should I rejoice! Should I Worship? Serve? Pray? Proclaim? Speak? We tend to use one or two of those answers as our “go to”, but we need God’s solutions. We need to obey Him.
Our Mission to Glorify!
Philippians 2:9-11 (NLT) Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor and gave him the name above all other names, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue declare that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Jesus is the Answer! The World Needs to Know! The Bible is filled with people trying to find some other answer and it never works out for them. Why? Because Jesus is the Answer. Before Jesus, everything will bow. Our Job, politics, hobbies, heroes, dreams, successes, and our money will all take a knee to Jesus. Every King and Queen, every nation, every Demon, and EVERYTHING will bow before Him.
Acts 4:12 (NLT) There is salvation in no one else! God has given no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.”
There is no other name. There is only one name that saves. There is no greater mission than that of making Jesus known. Nothing is more helpful. Nothing else will do as much good. Giving as many people as possible access to Jesus is the single most important thing a follower of Jesus could undertake.
John 14:6 (NLT) Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.
There is no other way! There is only Jesus. He is the only hope for this world. Don’t believe that because your religion says it or because someone yelled it from a platform. Believe it because those are HIS WORDS! He is the only way. To remain silent about it would be cruel. We must kindly, gently, and with great love, engage people about Jesus.
What’s your mission? We start by trusting Jesus. We live to Honor God. We Grow by Helping Others start by Trusting Jesus. Could you make Jesus’ name great? Could you glorify Him? Would you make your life larger than you?
Talk about it…
- What are your first thoughts regarding today’s topic? Please share with the group.
- Review Philippians 2:1-11. What challenges you about this verse? What excites you?
- Discuss unity. Discuss some practical suggestions to become more unified.
- Review Philippians 2:3-5. How could we be more like Jesus?
- Review James 4:7-8. Discuss ways to draw close to God? Resist the Devil?
- Review Philippians 2:9-11, Acts 4:12, John 14:6. Discuss the implications of those verses.
- Is there anything in today’s topic that you would be excited to share with a friend?