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January 11, 2021 7:00 am
Today on Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhart challenges you to become a fully functioning follower of Jesus Christ. My favorite verses to meditate on limitations. The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end. They are no every morning great is thy faithfulness.
What a great lot that is every morning.
It's no let's go joining us today on this additional Fellowship in the Word pastor know your part.
Fellowship in the Words the radio ministry of Fellowship Bible church located in Metairie when pastoral Gebhart now is once again he shows us how God's word world thoughts about God, about themselves, but others even about life during the late chapter 9 verse 23. This is right after Peter had made the great profession of faith that you are the Christ of God.
In verse 23 Jesus saying to them and to us concerning life here it is.
If anyone wishes to come after me, you must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake, he is the one will save it says for what is a man profited, if he gains the whole world loses or forfeits himself. I can tell you what life is life is following Jesus Christ. That's life. What's life following Jesus Christ and Jesus.
I think Paul realizes this too but Jesus realizes what he says this but were like if he just said light was following me would also argue that I am a follower, I say grace at the table and I go to church. Most the time I'm a follower. He said no. I explained to her what followers forwards one of the one who denies himself that he takes up his cross, which is the object of shame and he does it every day and he follows me. That's his loyalty to me that's a follower. By the way, that's life.
Notice he says he understands that we think of life in different ways for what is a prophet man gains the whole world lost himself using life is my presenting myself as a living sacrifice out of Romans 12. That's life. Life is giving my all to my Lord, that's life as a great thought about life in the word of God talks about them a lot. You see, there are other places in all these overlap there so many great thoughts.
For example, when I think about life. I think of this thought, and I think about Bill Solomon writes there is a way that seems right to bill but is Ender's destruction. There is a way that seems right to man but is Ender's destruction and so immediately when I think about life. I think will wait a minute don't trust Bill Jeremiah courses in and says in Jeremiah 17 Bill's heart is desperately wicked deceitful above all things. Well, that's me so I'm not going to trust Bill and I because I can trust Bill's heart Logan I trust I can trust my Lord you see what I see like might see it that way when it comes to life. The book of Ecclesiastes, Solomon, here's another principle of thinking great thoughts about life.
Life isn't fair, so don't expect it to be.
That's a great thought you measured how much anxiety you'd save yourself. That's what you thought you bought in that world and you say life is not fair. I don't expect it to be know what why don't know about that, but to be fair to me.
I demand it is fair to me.
It won't be it's not is another way like this, you see victorious Christian thing great thoughts about life great thoughts about others great thoughts about themselves in great thoughts about God. You see, if you have this view of life. It immunizes you against something crisis you see if it's all about following him. I can do that, whether there's a hurricane in the Gov. It doesn't matter. I can do that, whether there's a Republican or Democrat in the White House to understand that I can do that I can do that whether the stock market is going up or going down I can do that with the property values are going up or going.
I can do that because light is not about that legs about following Jesus Christ and the Tory inscriptions think great thoughts like that. It makes all the difference in the world. Great thoughts about God great thoughts about yourself. Great thoughts about others great thoughts about life great thoughts about the future during the Jeremiah chapter 29 we been here before. It's a great verse should be highlighted by now in your Bible verse 11.
The Lord is speaking for I know the plans that I have for you will of course he does. He knows everything doesn't. But I love that he's got plans even more particular. He didn't say plans for the universe. Plans for the world.
He has those. These are plans for you. He says the plans I have for you declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future hope future hope that something God has plans for me to give me a future and I hope he has plans for you to give you a future and a hope.
He has plans for us to give us a future and a hope. You see that's why God told you things about the future and the word of God. He does not tell you things about the future and the word of God so that you can go to some kind of like a outdoor barbecue and mesmerize your friends with your understanding of end time. Okay that's not why God doesn't widely tell us that hope. He tells us that because he wants us to have this great sense of hope within us. That's what God does wonderful thing when I think about the things in the future. Rapture well enough to tell us that's coming when that beanie to be a great moment. By the way, to be just as great a moment if you're there or here still to be great. What about absent from the body present with the Lord.
What's at present hope went absent in the body present with the Lord. How about when I step into heaven, he says in the Lord's presidents indescribable joy.
Can you describe it while what about I'll never leave you nor forsake you. Heaven is a Shorty. What can separate me from the love of Christ.
Nothing in the present.
Nothing the past. Nothing become nothing can separate you from the love of Christ widely telling me this hope he wanted me now hope for the future and I think great thoughts about the future. I have hope. Victorious Christians think great thoughts about God, about themselves, about others, about life, about the future and I know what some of you are thinking. What I wish I could got in on that too late for me and I've really been a disappointment to God in a really bad day today waxy. I had a bad week bad month last decade hasn't been very good for me. You know, I'm pretty much a disappointment. Why not have great thoughts and about your past.
Turn the Philippians chapter 3 with me. Philippians 3 verses 13 and 14 brother.
I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet but one thing I do for getting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus, and amazing what about my past, forget it. What about all my sins and failures. Forget them. See, that's what God says he's gotten another great thought about God. The psalmist says as far as the east is from the west that software. I removed your sins. Isaiah says look, I've taken your sins.
And I've taken the sea and I threw them overboard, and I don't forgive them.
I forgot about now. That's really what happens. Why can't we think that about our past.
What will our past to hamstring our lives that I'm so locked into my past and all my goodness.
We understood this, first visiting on much psychotherapy would be done. You really gotta get in your past and figure out what went wrong with your past it went wrong. One of my favorite verses to meditate on limitations. The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end. They are no every morning great is thy faithfulness. What a great thought that is every morning you wake up. It's no let's go wonderful great thoughts about God great thoughts about yourselves great thoughts about others great thoughts about life great thoughts about the future and great thoughts about your past one last area great thoughts. I want to turn with me to James chapter 1 great thoughts about your trials and tribulations challenges listen. God knows more than we could ever imagine how difficult it is to live as a fallen person among fallen people want to curse planet he understands there's a tremendous amount of sorrow, and I he knows that. But there can be great thoughts about my trials.
James chapter 1 verse two considerate all jewelry my brother and when you encounter various trials. What considerate all joy. Why knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance, and let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, and lacking in nothing. What's that mean to what it means God says I will take the cursing of your trial and turn it a blessing in your life, he said. After all, that's what I do start in Genesis and work awaited revelation is a recursive in the beginning yes is there a blessing that follows. Yes, what is the new heaven and a new earth is a blessing over the cursed of the old earth. See, God says that's what I do consider it all joy, my brother. When various trials occur to you doesn't sound a little bit like Romans 828 all things work together for the good for hello you that the need for those who love Christ Jesus. He sees as you can even get a handle on that part of your life. Jesus said it this way in this world you have tribulation, Job said, as the sparks fly upward so was trouble in man it's going to happen. Then Jesus said, but be of good cheer. I've overcome the world. You see how this works is that I've overcome the world.
We go through trials with some of you may be right now. Tremendous challenges in our life but you can think great thoughts because God is the God who takes the curse in terms of the blessing.
His grace is sufficient for the moment was a great thoughts about God and that's a victorious Christians have.
They have these great thoughts great thoughts about God great thoughts about self great thoughts about others great thoughts about life great thoughts about the future great thoughts about the past. Even great thoughts about the trials you might be thing I like it started how I do this just one look at one passage for that turn the book of Psalms Psalm one we get some insight here in the first book of the Psalter psalmist says how blessed and as I've said in the past. That means happy, joyful how happy and joyful is the man or woman who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, nor stand in the path of sinners or sit in the seat of scoffers. In other words, they are the kind of person that doesn't allow that world and their world to shape their thoughts. They don't allow the media to shape your thoughts then allow the neighbors to save their thoughts. He says they have something else working verse two, but his or her delight is in the law of the Lord, which is a metaphor or synonym for the word of God. The light is in the law of the Lord and in his law he meditates day and night. He doesn't mean you go to a special place and there's nothing wrong with that for periods of time is party to discipline the read the word of God and meditate on. That's a good discipline, but obviously you have another life to live, he says, day and night. What he means by that is I think great thoughts. I think great thoughts about God all day long about myself, about others see about life, about the future about the past about challenges or trials. I think great thoughts, he says, and here's what happens if you do that. Verse three he will be like a tree firmly planted by the streams of water which yields forth its fruit in season and its leaf does not wither in whatever he or she does prospers the abundant life that Christ spoke as a life of joy and hope and peace. Regardless of the circumstances of life. Victorious Christians think great thoughts Paul says you should think great thoughts, and I know you're capable in us the difference in your life, even over things you can even imagine how this can come up with conclude by giving you a little story last week Velma and I were on vacation and we came back the end of this week from Florida and we were 910 and we were just leaving Alabama and Norway in the Mississippi and listening to the Eagles new CD and we're missing the Eagles we come over ramp and the whole way over traffic is been extraordinarily heavy. When the three lane section but lots of 18 wheelers.
Lots of traffic coming over the ramp and I'm on the inside lane closest to the median and I thought one gross vibration for just a second I thought there might be attire within the next microsecond. The vibration was gone because the tire was gone and soon as that happened, the sidewalk completely come off of the tire soon as that happened.
The car just one hard right and so we went into the middle lane in an angle. I looked in my rearview mirror at that moment and I'm going 70 okay mean that the speed limit and I'm going 70 and I look at my really mirror and there's no one there, and I'm thinking that that's good.
And then all of a sudden the back of the car comes around sideways. The car goes sideways so it's that speed on the interstate going that direction now.
My thought is this cars going the rule and I said or it's going to start fish doing doughnuts and were going straight into the woods don't doing doughnuts was amazing at this time was there wasn't a sound in the car that we have our two dogs with us and they make sounds for anything that's unusual. Anything is unusual or barking wondrously when Velma slapped and the other was in the backseat.
There's not even a gasp and my wife likes to gasp, but she didn't do that. There was no sound.
There was no sound. I remember as it fell on. I thought this a lot like sliding on ice in Pennsylvania and so I'm going to turn my will is the opposite direction and see if I can get the car to go straight and so I took the will and start turning to the ops direction. The back and came Ron went back to came running on the brakes when straight off the side and pulled right off of the meeting. The only words were spoken. Velma said nice job and I got out, went to the back had to unload everything was in the trunk got my spare out and then jacked the car up and up. No damage to the car the rim. Nothing. Just the tire is off the rim and so I put the spare on we get back in the car so we get back in the car would start driving and I said we were thinking about when that happened and she said I had to thoughts the here's what's amazing she had the same exact tooth outside. She said when the car turned sideways. I thought this is were going to die and I said I was the thought I this is were going to die because I realize the car inside tire like that it's in a flip if it did at that speed.
She said the second thought I had was I'm okay with that and I was exact that I had peace, no anxiety at all. Now was the grace of God sufficient just spirit of God there. Yes, the angels of God to work. Yes, I think somebody straighten this out but I tell you what else was at work. Years and years of years of thinking about great thoughts about our God what he's like. I have plans for you going to see. Also, great thoughts, great thoughts about our future. Absent in the bodies present with the Lord you see in his presence is indescribable joy was in fear.
Mother was much time for fear I do understand that but see a lot of times is what I'm saying is Christians. I would never even thought about that as an incident that was going to come didn't plan for it. But thinking great thoughts about God, about myself, about others, about life, about the future. The past and challenges when that comes the play is when something comes into your life.
That's when faith gets applied and you apply the fates of the great thoughts you have is of your Christian life is not what you thought it should be and not what you know others to be what you look in the mirror and save yourself the wine thing great thoughts. Do I have something to make my faith clinging to do. I meditate day and night great thoughts about God me others life future past trials and tribulations you do gotta be delighted. You will never be disappointed that spring father. I'm afraid that so often we think we list lack faith in. In many cases that might be true but father, I think what often happens to us as we have nothing for our faith to cling to. We stop thinking these great thoughts that we could have about you and we begin to allow ourselves to go to the default mode and think about life, the way we were taught to them the way everyone around the stars and father when difficult times, it creates tremendous anxiety on our part and we lack peace and the reason we do. Father is so often we are what we think even more than we think we are father, may your spirit challenge us this day. Each of us to get up tomorrow morning and begin the day by thinking great thoughts. The program ourselves to think that way father if we do we reap the bounty of the abundant life that our Lord spoke life that is filled with joy and peace and hope and immune circumstances. This we pray for our good Christ pastor broke apart. If you ever miss one of our broadcast or maybe you just like to listen to the message one more time.
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