Sunday, February 3, 2008

Romans 4:17

I know I said I was going to post some more about the book, "Starving Jesus", and I will, but for now I want to share just a little about what I just read in Romans.

I was reading this verse in Romans, when the Holy Spirit used it to hit me upside the head with the force of baseball bat being swung by Babe Ruth!

Romans 4:17
As it is written: "I have made you a father of many nations." He is our father in the sight of God, in whom he believed—the God who gives life to the dead and calls things that are not as though they were.

Did you get that last part?

Let me put it up here again, only this time, all in caps. I don't want you to miss this.

"...God who gives life to the dead AND CALLS THINGS THAT ARE NOT AS THOUGH THEY WERE."

Why did this hit me so hard? Well, maybe this is a no-brainer to you, but I saw this in a whole new way tonight.

In my sermon this morning I told our church that we needed to see the goal, the finish line in what God has called us to do. I am in a very unique and blessed position at this time. Hopefully I can explain it to you. We had 69 people in our services this morning, with at least 5 people who are normally there absent for various reasons. I know, I know, it doesn't sound like a big deal, unless you know that three years ago when I first preached at this church there was ten people there. Yup, you read right, ten people. How did we get from ten people to almost seventy people in three years?

Because God called things that were not as though they were.

God saw us and said, "You're not a little church of 10 people. You are an exploding church of 70!"

Which takes me back to what I asked the church this morning. What do they see for the future of our little church? I beleive that God has called us a church of waaaaay more than 70. I'm believing that God is ready to burst the doors open and knock down the walls. After all, He has no limitations.

Why this is all amazing to me is that I really didn't think He was going to do this when I first took on this little church. I was going to be jazzed if we could hit the low twenties within three years. I figured doubling our size and having a 100% increase would be pretty phenomenal. I found out that I think too small. I serve a big God.

I ask you to pray for us.

We have a lot of work to do.

We have people who have many spiritual, physical, financial and emotional needs.

We need to build a new building. Our present building only holds about 80 people. We're closing in on maximum occupation soon.

But I know that God doesn't see it like I do.

He calls things that are not, as though they were.

I just need to step out in faith.

One of those things is that I want to be able to leave my "tent-making" occupation and be able to devot all my time to building this church that God has called me to.

I don't know how that will be possible. I have medical insurance, a good salary, and a great retirement plan and to walk away from all of that, well, it is scary.

But I need to see truth.

And truth is not a "thing".

Truth is a person. Truth is Jesus.

And Truth tells me that I serve a God who can supply all of my needs. After all, he calls things that are not as though they are.

I will close this time with a contemporary song by the group, Casting Crowns.

The song is called, "The Voice Of Truth".

"Voice Of Truth"

Oh what I would do to have
The kind of faith it takes to climb out of this boat I'm in
Onto the crashing waves

To step out of my comfort zone
To the realm of the unknown where Jesus is
And He's holding out his hand

But the waves are calling out my name and they laugh at me
Reminding me of all the times I've tried before and failed
The waves they keep on telling me
Time and time again. 'Boy, you'll never win!'
"You'll never win"

But the voice of truth tells me a different story
And the voice of truth says "Do not be afraid!"
And the voice of truth says "This is for My glory"
Out of all the voices calling out to me
I will choose to listen and believe the voice of truth

Oh what I would do to have
The kind of strength it takes to stand before a giant
With just a Sling and a stone
Surrounded by the sound of a thousand warriors
Shaking in their armor
Wishing they'd have had the strength to stand

But the giant's calling out my name and he laughs at me
Reminding me of all the times I've tried before and failed
The giant keeps on telling me
Time and time again "boy, you'll never win!
"You'll never win"

But the stone was just the right size
To put the giant on the ground
And the waves they don't seem so high
From on top of them looking down
I will soar with the wings of eagles
When I stop and listen to the sound of Jesus
Singing over me

I will choose to listen and believe the voice of truth

Pastor Dave