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August 11, 2022 6:00 am
I've got a question for you that I want you to think hard about before you answer. Are you really enjoying life. I mean, are you productive. I don't mean are you committed.
I don't mean are you a good family man or single person I don't mean are you ministering your church. Are you really enjoying life today to learn that maybe you're not having enough fun and God wants to put some set as in your life that sounds good. Stay with.
Thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge Chip Ingram, Living on the Edges and informational discipleship ministry start helping Christians what is just a minute Chip finishes his message enjoy grateful from his series to great in God's eyes today to remind us the joy of experiencing happy occasions are vital to becoming a great Christian pleases God to want to learn how bullets join Chip out for the rest of his talk from Ecclesiastes chapter 3. Pleasure has been polluted and distorted and made to be the opposite of godliness.
It's very subtleness how Satan works.
In fact, CS Lewis made his other great quote. He says the problem with Christians is not that they enjoy too much pleasure. The problem with Christians is they enjoy too little pleasure.
See what we've done is we said pleasure is over here and it's evil and bad and godliness is over here some of the Bible teaches us.
The Bible teach the Bible teaches worldly pleasure, hedonism, the belief that satisfying sensual desires and food and sex and materialism and fame and all that will deliver for you and will feed your soul and make you somebody hedonism, live for today, eat, drink, for tomorrow we may die get it all why you can't. You deserve a break today. Get all the gusto right. That's hedonism that is worldly pleasure. But what we've done is we've taken pleasure, and we've got it, as that's the only kind of pleasure who invented pleasure.
So what we've done is we've taken the baby and we thrown it out with the bathwater. And so what we do is we think enjoying things and pleasure. Somehow we got logged in the Pentium chip of our brain that's wrong I feel guilty when I'm having fun. I feel guilty when I relax I feel guilty when I do something for me. I feel guilty when I take time and stop and enjoy and richly just soak in all the good things God's given me. Here's a line that you may want to jot down is just kinda grown out of the study has been just a one line summary for me.
Pleasure is a harsh taskmaster but it's an excellent tour guide pleasure is a harsh taskmaster and other words if you think pleasure can deliver for you if you think that pleasure once you get the big house once you finally get the boat. Once you remodel the kitchen.
Once you get the second house once so many people report to you what you can you know eat as many stakes as you want what you can take an exotic vacation what your body looks certain, like if you think and believe that what if I could get a little bit more that drug if I got a superduper off the chart sex life but whatever it is it's a harsh taskmaster because just like a drug.
No matter what hit you get it'll take a bigger hit to satisfy you next time it'll take a bigger hit to satisfy the next time that's why the whole sexual perversion. It starts with the morale and adultery and always intimate and Kiki weird stuff is it always takes something more, something bizarre.
Pleasure is a harsh taskmaster.
It can never deliver for you, but it's a great tour guide you know along the road of life of walking with God, stopping and enjoying the pleasure the good pleasure.
The God provides, itches, who was good in the midst of a fallen world and difficulty and pain is like what I needed that. That was an awesome meal that was a wonderful moment. That was a great sunset awesome party. I haven't laughed that hard around the table for now it happened ages.
Say what you know what my priorities in order of done this on it that was a great purchase. This is a wonderful house that was a nice walk and sees a tour got a member I was on a sabbatical once in and I had the opportunity go to Italy with my family. Part of Europe and and I'll never forget were on the cellular you're on the bus as you do these tours known the guy talks to the thing that you can understand, but but but but you know and so we get on this bus and it's is this bridge and it's in Italy some beautiful city. I can't remember. And there's something over here and something over here and is a tour guide goes I want you to know.
Please stop right here, you know, this offer to your left is the beautiful beautiful scenery and Outlook into your ride is a beautiful beautiful city. That's all there is a time YOU this, Mike is a beautiful picture you know what I was thinking to myself, you know what God wants me to stop and say it's a beautiful life you got a beautiful wife you got the beautiful children. This is a beautiful meal. This is a beautiful sky and I realize as a tour guide you know what I want to be on the bus. Looking at stuff in Italy. Full-time, but it was an awesome break. It reminded me of how wonderful it was to get back in the saddle and teach the word of God and be the man God wants me to be, you know, if you think I'm pushing this just a little you know I can't develop it fully. But let me give you a taste of both old and New Testament terms of what I think is accurate theology of pleasure, the Old Testament, you know there's feast.
Note you know we make these biblical words.
You know what a feast is at a feast people do what they eat when you eat like really good food and usually a lot of it with a lot of other people usually have some to do with fun we just put that in the back of your mind.
There were private fee shall notice there were communal fees and I just pulled this.
Anyone can do this Zondervan pictorial dictionary says about private feasts. The social life of ancient Israel provided many joyous occasions were celebrated with these weddings. The celebrations of which often lasted seven days can imagine having someone get married and let's take off all week and party for a week when we go three hours I go to wedding on a Pongo reception up the meaning of a child pay because Wayne let's have a party the birthday of the king. The arrival of a of an approaching dignitary.
The departure of an approaching dignitary.
Someone important came. Let's have a party he's late because of another party. Sheep shearing was also a joyous season where they sheared the wool and then they went to the sanctuary and they had a party. Solomon dedicated the temple with a feast.
Ancient Hebrews were not aesthetics often feast demanded no specific location other than gladness."
I feel happy to have but you are pretty happy with some party. This is this.
These were private feasts now. I wish I had time to develop all this, but you'll notice there's communal fees. There was a feast every Sabbath every Sabbath.
It was a joyous occasion. There were monthly fees. There was a new moon. There were annual fees in the word for festival here it is the Hebrew word, it means to dance or to turn around got put that the Bible can you ever seen tiny kids you have to teach little kids enjoy life. Do you teach all people like us. God says you know what I want you to forget this, so I've got these feast, I mean these big ones the Passover, Pentecost, the boost the day of atonement, and here's what you need to get instead of taking pleasure in pushing it over here which we end up making amusement which means not to think or entertainment.
I need a break today and getting movies so that I can recover from things I don't want to face.
Sorry if that was will to convicting. I'll get back to the text, God says I'm to take warship. I'm to have you stop I'm going to combine worship in seeing me and honoring me in the reading of my word and Sabbath or rest and then as that progresses and you see who I am. There's going to be required food and you know we always think of it, all you had to kill the blood and the goat came in the priest did this they did and I gave the first portion to the Lord right and then the priest got some what you think they did with the rest that food they had a party and the windows would come in the sojourners of common people. Passenger would come in the creeks will come and I mean by the time of Jesus, take thousands of people. The Passover was not like okay okay the big Passover's coming. Was it sober and wholly on the front and what they remembered.
Yeah. And that was like why were delivered were delivered and they had these weeklong parties three or four different times it would take a week off to stop to sing to dance to worship the New Testament you have Jesus words and works member the Beatitudes. Blessed are the words McCarty's blessed you were blessed means happy are. It's a deeper than superficial, but happy are those who want to understand who they are before God, and deal rightly with their sin and respond in certain ways, but there's this thing of God wants us to enjoy it when when and where the first miracle occur. Remember all be.
Isn't that think it was at a wedding, and what was the miracle to heal someone introducing like really spiritual the people been partying for a long time. What's he doing goes over the six jobs in those jugs. They're not like this, they they stood about this tall and were about this big around to what they must been a lot of people there.
I mean, you know that's like that that makes a keg look small so he fills six cakes with wine or more sit violate some of our traditions even this feel so your face is one sounds a little too wild to me.
Ethel, uncle Ned never go for this gun is just the Bible you know in the early church, love is what transformed the world but you know what their business card was joy the business card of the early church was joy when you met New Testament believer you saw someone that despite all the circumstances in the fallenness of life, who richly drank in the good things of God and deeply enjoyed and laughed in late, they actually greeted one another with a holy kiss and they embraced and they love one another and they had fun and you know what they did take great risks and they did make great sacrifices and they did pray great prayers in the dream great dreams for the glory of God.
But in a fallen world.
You need to stop and enjoy great moments and the reason we don't as we have a distorted view of God number one and second, as we have a warped theology of pleasure.
First Timothy 617 it says instruct those who are rich in this present world not to be conceited or fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches and when we usually quote that part of it affected no sound. Some verses we memorize them.
But we only memorize parts of them was sorely parts off pastors love this one. By the way, you know, instruct those who are rich in this present world.
By the way, that's all of us rich in the New Testament was you already had food for tomorrow and had a change of clothes and strict instructions are rich in this present world not to be conceited or fix their hope on which is why because they're uncertain why we just wanted you six stick your hope on something that can come through for you but fix your hope on God we get that part.
The last line is, who richly supplies us with are you ready for this. All things to enjoy God wants me to enjoy. He wants me to enjoy life. The third reason that we failed to deeply enjoy life and enjoy great moments is our unwillingness to face our Miss beliefs and or unhealthy behavior and unlocking a walk through these because we we struggle with all the minute you start looking. I was watch people they reduce Augusta hope he doesn't going to. These are normal workaholic. I'm a perfectionist.
People told me that bicarbonate counseling for that without approval to go what to do last. Here's what I want you to do.
I want you to understand, just like I need understand is that these are Miss beliefs that have been over time. Connor walked into the back of your mind in my and what you need to do. As I read through these just say which one of these is the most dominant in my thinking which one of these adjustable checkmark by because if you don't face your Miss belief then you just keep going down a path to do something that is unhealthy to deliver in an attempt to find that joy and happiness five quickness beliefs. The workaholic work to find your life so your best energy is spent there. But no, it's not working hard, not even working a lot it's working. Thinking your identity is your work that that is what kills you is a performance mentality. The perfectionist has long hours required to make every task flawless. Why because people only like me. I'm only significant if I do everything right there approval seeker work piles up because your fear of saying no to others, I have to say yes I had to CS I have to say it so everyone has a life and everyone likes you except you don't have a life and you don't have a life not because you're so wonderful, not because you're so godly not because you're such a servant, although I'm sure you are, but is because the strokes of people and your unwillingness to set some boundaries and say you know something I don't need this external artificial pot on the back to make me of someone, someone in Christ.
What I need to do is figure out his purposes for my life and you can't please everybody. Anyway, so no matter what you do. Some people are knocking like you just accept that say God what you want me to do before this escapist work provides an escape from painful relationships or problems. Why been there and done that you feel little conflict go downstairs and work their will conflict go back to the office below conflict back. You wash the dishes.
Something I needed to do one more time and we escape to places we escape in these ways are the materialist is an insatiable desire for possessions. The drive you to increase your workload. I gotta have more because that but the lie is is that that the people that are happy on the commercials they look like this and I have this kind of jewelry and have this kind of person with this kind of design on it. The drive disk on a cart and have these kind areas in these kind of communities with these kind of beach houses and they had to have this kind of money and these kind of clothes and bees, hair designs and this kind of stuff. And if you ever wonder were in any of this stuff is really with you just walking your garage, just walking your garage and then we get on walking a garage on what what what you know what all this stuff for problem. Many of you have storage. That's the new thing right you know if that doesn't work then go in your closet and and and and I haven't worn this in six months and I probably will never word I really don't like it but there's just one. There's just you get a little bit of a rush on a buying something new and I met people that they think they got stuff in the closet.
The tags are name taken off, lest you think this is just about you lie another life for me is that thinking, reading, relaxing, enjoying just doing things for the fun of it. Margin time for me time with Teresa trips to visit kids are all luxuries to be fit in after I get all my work deadlines and obligations completed. Some of you again are thinking and there's a line there somewhere. See all those are renewing refreshing times that really restore my life, my heart, my spirit, my body and the fun. But see, I grew up in the Protestant work ethic is a very good thing.
Don't get me wrong, but the Protestant work ethic with with World War II parents like I had means when you come home you cannot do what you cannot play until your homework start correct. You know you cannot have any dessert until your meal is not correct. But what I think these are good, very good disciplines.
Here's the problem if unconsciously gets so inbred and you you can't have fun until all your work is not that is good for 1/3 grader. But when you're 42 years old.
You can't have any funds for your work is done and the work is never done. Guess what we have any fun and you feel guilty when you do have fun.
The truth is, in reality, these renewing activities are the key to healing and effectiveness in leadership and lifelong impact health. Therefore, it means I must say no to pressing demands in the eyes of significant others. In fact, life's value is not measured simply by the extent of one's accomplishments or impact but by the quality of living in the process enjoying God's rich commands are commanded to give her think you're disobeying God when you're not enjoying life. For some of you that are built motivated.
That'll help you start about not having fun. No enjoy great moments. It's a serious business of heaven. Let me give you a little to go package on the solution side.
How can you start enjoying great moments. Some of you walk out here liberated and just go what you try some of these. First of all, slow down, ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life. Slow down Psalm 46 can't be still and know that I'm God speed kills joy. We are multitaskers and we just feel good when we get seven things done at the same time a member Dallas Willard in one of his books ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life.
Spiritual development and intimacy with God is impossible in a hurried life and it was like for for a solid two years unless you note circumstances were completely unavoidable. I started driving in the right hand lane on the freeway when I went to the grocery store. I got in the longest line. When I went to the bank.
I got the longest line I started arriving at meetings 10 minutes early and I decided I would slow and I realize underneath this.
I gotta get the shortest line get here get here get here get here and when people cut me off this behind it all was this thought where I'm going is way more important than where they're going. That's why I need to be at the front of the line.
I need to get to the quicklime because they just probably don't understand how important I am with all my demands and how much I have to get done as though all those people in all those cars and all those other lines are second rate citizens at the core of hurry is arrogance. God is against the proud, so slow down and it will take discipline in the plan.
Second, this don't take this as a weight loss plan but slim down slim down. Due last so you can enjoy it more. Simplify your schedule simplify your meals simplify your calendar simplify your close simplify your commitments. Quit getting overextended look at some of the stuff you do in your life and just say do I really need to do it. This may be heresy. I remember probably eight years ago. I look at all the time and all the energy in Christmas cards and I just thought into something I'm not doing so. If you don't get one for me is not that I don't love you. I really love you.
I just don't know who said he got most of them are. We spent all this money. All this time. All these addresses all the stuff and the only ones ever read to the people right will note on right. I don't from given Bob due to do to do God bless all those card companies make it all that money and I'm not saying the wrong but I just thought do I need to do Christmas cards what what motivates me to do that. Why not call five people you're really close to why not, why not do something that really matters to someone that might need some encouragement over Christmas time instead of all the jet and you know what Goldie gets crazy and used to get 50 another's hundred others 200 say no more. Third, sit down, stop living for tomorrow or because of yesterday.
First, that's 516, 18, says rejoice always present tense, pray without ceasing, present tense in everything give thanks, for this is the will of God, take stock, thank God. Drink it in, focus on what you do have, and I just realized so much of our activities. I can't do this. I gotta do this one because if I don't then this will happen in the future forgot to do this I gotta do this I gotta do this. Gotta do this will why because someone 32 years ago said you'll never amount to anything.
I'm gonna prove him wrong my land. Your 50 some years old, you already prove them wrong. Stop doing things because of the past or for the future and take some time to sit down and live in the now. I could be wrong but right now, maybe all you have. I don't have any prep three minutes from now Jesus come this afternoon I might get my truck so if I spent all my time living for something or because of, the only thing I miss his life forth look around what blessing from God. Could you celebrate today and I don't mean I mean everything.
I mean little things recently.
I leave in the morning when it's dark and there was a slight huge star. Not only thing about stars but was so bright was probably a planet.
It was probably venous but is awesome.
I lived out of next to the ocean for about 12 and half years. I went for like almost 9 months.
Once I realized I'm a mile and 1/2 from the ocean and I'm not seen the ocean that's called being an idiot and when I started learning this, and I started on Sunday mornings I would drive and have my sermon done.
I park over a cliff and look at the ocean and just see it come in and just just thank God and is often cry out of joy and just think this whole big planet and all this beauty and it was a couple three weeks ago I came home and Jan if you ever seen a hawk up close you get the big yellow line, I mean their majestic birds and this one was. I might exaggerate my wife says I do on these things, but his his wings is about that tall and I pulled in and are supposed to be real high in the bush next to my house is this hawk and I pull in and even flyway select my windshield for me to this hawk is like the first row. Unlike forefeet and I turn off my card and flyway and you don't like thing to do people see calls to make and I thought you know what, when's the next time you get five or 6 feet from a hog and I set my car as I look and I just got the majesty mean that he can be a probably couple hundred feet see a mouse. I just drink it, drink it in final thing is not on your notes right in the word plan and schedule great moments in your daily, weekly, monthly and annual calendar.
The only way I've been able to break out of this plan it in. I plan and a date with my wife. I plan it sounds crazy. I plan and I pick up a cup coffee in the morning.
I like coffee okay. I hope it's not bad for me.
For those of you to concern I go have to soak to relax I get a good cup of coffee every morning I put on some music that really refreshes my soul. I drive the long way to work I sing along with the song.
Sometimes I do little worship. Sometimes I pull into the parking lot and I sit in the parking lot for 10 minutes before I go in and I just leaned back and think of all the good things I have. I just start countenance that you know what thank you God. Do you realize what a change.
That is, instead of grabbing the cup on the way out. Gotta get here, you know coffee. Here's a burger here land traffic all the red light.
Well, you know everyone else around them all run into blood pressure goes up, you know, you arrive frenzy stressed, angry, upset that joyful, loving, winsome Christian to get that great testimony planet in planning and fun planning activities.
Planning get with people you live plan and times away daily one minute vacations a chat down the hall with someone you like vacation with the family a great clean movie a walk a couple times a week go out and just look at the stars is faceup from God. You have permission great application for this message. Enjoy great moments series. Good to great in God's eyes.
In the gospel of Mark, Jesus said whoever wants to become great among you must what the series chip explores what great this means to God by highlighting 10 crucial practices he says are vital know if you're looking to dive deeper into the subject. Let me encourage you to check out Chip's book or small group study. These are perfect tools to help jumpstart your faith.
To learn more about these resources go to LivingontheEdge.org the chip and remap call AAA 333-6003 chips back with me in studio now and chip before we go any further, I can see your wanting to jump in here and share something with her listeners. Thanks so much Dave. I just want to say thanks to every single one of you who partner with us Living on the Edge you know some of you pray some of you give and some you do both. You may not know about we meet as a staff Monday through Friday, and we pray to me, we have staff all across the country and we time it where we come together we pray over you. We pray over the teaching that goes out, we pray over the projects we have so many people to call in and say this is a specific need, and we pray for specific needs. We pray over relationships. We pray that God will use the ministry here and around the world. I have just one question. If the teaching on this program is making a difference in your life would you get on board. Would you commit to pray for us. Would you commit to give effect regardless of the amount, if you could give monthly would make a world of difference. We have so much ahead of us. The needs are so great and life is short, would you go online or give us a call and become a partner with the ministry I'm not discouraged because I know God's in control, but I believe he's calling us to step up and really make a difference and we need your help to do that will if you're already a financial partner. Thank you. With your help Living on the Edge is ministering to more people than ever before. But if you're benefiting from ships teaching and haven't yet taken that step.
Now would be a great time to join the team to send a gift to become a monthly partner go to LivingontheEdge.org or text the word donate to 741 41 that's donate to 741 41 or visit LivingontheEdge.org Listeners just Donate will ship today. You talked about five specific behaviors that we tend to fall into the destroy our ability to really enjoy great moments when she take a few minutes and just walk through those again for us which are limited. Just list those and as you're listening to me encourage you to put a little checkmark mentally in your mind to say oh yeah, that's me, or that's me and hopefully you'll have one or two checkmarks. Unfortunately, I have three, but the first is the workaholic number two the perfectionist number three.
The approval seeker number for the escapist and number five the materialist exercise we taught today. We talked about how when that is your mindset. You don't have time for fun. You don't build it in or you. The escapist actually you take it to the other extreme, and you think pleasures going to deliver for you what it never can and when me personally. I just admit this. I was a 28 years old I was a full-blown workaholic. I probably went on four hours sleep. I really was committed to my wife and kids and I got up and read the Bible but mama I was killing my body because of my workaholism and I felt guilty when I worked out I felt guilty if I watch the ballgame. I felt guilty if I played nine holes of golf.
I felt guilty about everything because I was, not only workaholic but I was a perfectionist, so the sermon was never good enough. The church was never good enough. I was never good enough. Unfortunately, so my kids would say dad you, projected that we were never good enough and then finally I was in approval seeker and so good I thought I did everything really well then people would like me and yet abets that's like a toxic mixture. It is amazing to think that enjoying great moments being refreshed by God.
Hearing him say I approve you. You know what that was your best effort. It doesn't have to be perfect and guess what, I rested from my work and I'm God so you can take one day off to so all this is to say now if you think it oh yeah thanks ship it's encouraging to know that someone else has. He struggles I didn't break out of those alone. I only broke out of those when I got with a group of people that we were really honest and I could out loud, say I'm a workaholic and it's it's I'm not a martyr I'm not a super saying I'm not a super pastor, a guy that desperately needs people's approval and that is sin.
I on the focus of my life and when I did that in a group and we processed it together and I had some people hold me accountable and then I renewed my mind about my thinking.
I broke free of that.
I always had the tendencies under pressure, but I broke free. Find a group study this God will change you from the inside out. That's a great reminder chip will help you get into meaningful community. Let me encourage you to check out our small group resources are so easy to use chip provides the teaching that he'll have time to discuss what you've heard alongside our helpful study guides.
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We've discounted all of our small groups tools for you to learn more, go to LivingontheEdge.org or call us at Tripoli 333-6003 Listeners Special offers will. Until next time for everyone here. This is Steve saying thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge