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Posts Tagged ‘Psalms’

To hear this past weeks sermon click the following link.

It Is It Isn’t Sermon

Working through this series on “Hearing God”, it doesn’t take long to realize that a great deal of scripture wrestles with this very topic.  Isn’t that what each story seems to share, God speaking to people and how people respond to that word?  As a matter of fact hearing God is so central to the message of God that God deemed it vital to embody his word.  Sometimes people wonder why “the Word become flesh” is important.  I think about it like this; people I really want to get to know, I want to talk to them in person.  Conversations that are very important, I want to have them in person.  God’s desire is relationship, for only through his relationship are we truly whole. When we talk about “hearing God”, we are essentially talking about a healthy relationship with God.

This past week we explored the fear many people have of being alone and briefly on some of the ways we attempt to make up for that deficiency.  We heard the good news in Romans 8, that in Christ, we are never alone.  Dallas Willard, essentially, was the outline for this past weeks sermon and he in his book “Hearing God” drives this point home, that we are made for relationship with God and it is his nature to draw us to him.  There were also a couple of really great points he made.  One point he makes is that if we look at scripture such as Romans 8:35, Psalm 16, and Psalm 23, the promises made are not that bad things will never happen to us, but that no matter what comes at us we are still beyond genuine harm because God is present with us.

That begs the question of what “general harm” is.  I shared the example Sunday that when a home is broken into the most upsetting thing that happens to the home owner is not the loss of their stuff, but the loss of their security.  Essentially, the soul has been violated.  Some thing with abusive language, manipulated feelings, disrespect for another person, etc.  What scripture is saying, what God is saying, is that let me guide you in your value and I can heal you from all violations.

So what does all of this have to do with hearing God?  Well, the only way to receive the benefits of a relationship (with anyone) is to actually participate in the relationship.  The only way for us to discover this peace is to find ourselves with the peace maker (I don’t mean Smith and Wesson).  We are called by God to be in a conversational relationship with him.  Exodus 19:6 and Rev. 1: 5-6, both say that we are called to be a priesthood to the nations.  Let me “de-religion” that for you.  We are called to be co-workers with God.  Living a life of lifting up, creating, caring, loving, healing, making whole, building relationships.  The Gospel of John says that Jesus calls us friends.    So we are called to be friends and called to work along side God.  This means we are called to be engaged in the business of God.

The funny thing about that last sentence is that so many people interpret that as meaning we are all called to be pastors.  Why is that funny?  Because, really, yes the job of a pastor is about God’s work but only a portion of it.  As a matter of fact, the job of the pastor is to get you to work along side God in whatever it is that you do.  I think we get confused about hearing God and discerning his will because we limit our understanding of God’s desires.  Our actions indicate that the pinnacle of our week is Sunday Worship, that we are working for that day.  We act like we are doing God a favor by going to to church.  This is a lot like telling a friend that you are going to do him a favor by eating the food in his fridge.  You are helping him clean the fridge out and helping him not waste food.

The reality is that worship on Sunday’s is the beginning of the week and it here we remind ourselves that we want to be about the business of God because that is where life is.  Then both you and I go into the rest of the week and we work with God.  Ahh, but what work is that?  This is where we drop the ball.  Some o us wonder what God’s will is for every second of the day and we become immobilized.  Others of us just ignore it because we think it is impossible to hear God.  The big problem is that the best way to hear God is to work with him, but many are saying how can I work with him if I can’t hear him.

I have the solution.  Ok, I have a way to practice listening to God by what you are doing.  Can you tell the difference between good and bad?  Someone does something that really annoys you… got it in your head… now bad would be to say what you were really thinking out loud.  Good would be to say nothing…. well, that’s a start.  Really good would be when you started to think that thought, you pray for them, yourself and the situation (probably a prayer in your head, they may freak out if you put a hand on their shoulder and…) Another example are the potential acts of goodness all around and you know what they are.  It doesn’t have to have scripture attached to it to be holy.  These are starting places and as you do them, try to see Christ.  This combined with reading scripture and daily asking God to reveal himself to you will be fruitful in your walk with God.  You will begin to learn to hear him.  Then when you learn to hear him in the little things, discerning prayer for the big moves in your life will make more sense.

Later, I will share some of Dallas Willard’s thoughts on some of the mistakes we make in listening to God, but in the mean time, seek him out in scripture, community, and learning how to see with the eyes of Christ.

Last Sunday’s Music and Video Clips

  1. Awesome Is The Lord Most High
  2. Jesus Messiah
  3. Revelation Song
  4. I Will Rise

Mother’s Day clips

  1. I’m Sorry Mom
  2. You’re the Reason
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