God Speaking to Us Through Circumstances

Today’s post are my preaching notes for my sermon at Kishwaukee Community Church.  If you are at Kishwaukee today, you may follow these notes as I preach.  If you are not at Kishwaukee today, click here to go to our  website on Monday and follow the links to hear the sermon. You can then follow these notes as you listen to the sermon.

.

How We Hear God Speaking to Us, Part 3

.

I.  Listening and Looking for God in Daily Life

A.  God speaking to us regularly

Scripture, Prayer, Worship, Dreams, Visions, Theophany’s

Circumstances

B.  Parents hearing Children

.

II.  Hearing and Seeing God

A. Seeing God’s work to be done vs Seeking God’s will

We obsess if this is God’s will,

rather than if it is His work for me to do.

B.  Determining if God has work for me to do

always comes before

the conviction that this is/was God’s will for me.

C.  I often do not clearly see God’s will

Until after getting to work and

After seeing Him equip me.

D.  This is not to minimize seeking God’s will

But if His will is unclear

Do the work God has placed before you

E.  Have I misread God’s will before

Absolutely, but instead of fretting over misread

Do His work and trust God to work out His purposes

.

III.  The Work God Tells Us To Do

A.  Rely on Holy Spirit to guide you

B.  Remember the 4 boundaries

Consistent with scripture

Word from scripture

Confirmation through the body

Calls you to act

C.  God does not send where I want or where I don’t want

just because that is my wish

Usually when I stake out these claims

God sends me to prove who is in charge

D.  Let God initiate giving direction

You do not need to dream up work to do for God

At worse may need to discern which work to do

E.  Jesus trusted God to reveal work to be done – John 5:19-20

Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of his own accord, but only what he sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, that the Son does likewise.  For the Father loves the Son and shows him all that he himself is doing. And greater works than these will he show him, so that you may marvel.

F.  Look at Jesus ministry

Healing of sick – they came to Him

Feeding of 5000 – Jesus did not say assemble hungry people

Calming the Storm – Jesus did not pray for storm

Raising Jarius’ daughter from illness

Raising Lazarus from the Tomb

God brought the work to Jesus

Work for Jesus to do while fulfilling God’s Will for salvation

G.  Seek short-term clarity of direction rather than long-term discernment

Ask God what do You want me to do today

Instead of asking God what do you want me to be doing in 10 years

If we tend to the little picture

God will tend to the big picture

.

IV.  Mistakes, Regrets, and Difficulties

A.  You will make mistakes, mis-steps in discernment

Regardless of prayer, discernment

Because of that little problem called sin and living in the flesh

B.  Mistake when pushed ahead

Worship experiment at PC

I knew we made the wrong decision

We pushed for a long-term goal

C.  Regret leaving denomination at the time we did

Lawsuit pending, oral arguments April 17

A ministry at a standstill

What has happened to us since then

has not been kind or fair much less Christian behavior.

It broke me, but I did not think I needed to be broken

My biggest regret is the pain it caused my family.

However God still using me!

Never let past regrets or present difficulties to lead you to question God’s will. There are actions which seemed to be 100% God’s direction which I later regretted, because of the hurt and pain. BUT, I cannot say, that what I did was not God’s will.

God sends us into the frying pan

because He needs someone there

D.  When following God’s will ==> regret, difficulty, hurt

You need God’s perspective

to understand your circumstances …

That perspective may not come

Until God shows how He is using you

Again, this is why I only seek short term clarity

.

V.  Story of Joseph

A.  His life a roller coaster

Vision of greatness

Dad’s favorite

Brother’s sell into slavery

Special in Pharaoh’s house

Falsely accused for spurning advances

Years in prison

Finally opportunity to interpret dreams

High place in Pharaoh’s government

Brothers come hungry

Opportunity to save God’s people from starvation

B.  Where on the roller coaster do we stop

to measure God’s will and blessing

C.  Genesis 50:20-21

What you meant for evil against me, God used for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.  So do not fear; I will provide for you and your little ones.”  Thus he comforted them and spoke kindly to them.

D.  Joseph did not return the evil

Joseph remembered God’s work, will

E.  Blackaby quote

During his difficulties Joseph needed God’s perspective to understand his circumstances.  … When Joseph’s life was placed in the context of God’s eternal purposes, every major experience in his life—both good and bad—could be seen to have a purpose and to result in good.

F.  We can only see circumstances with clarity

We cannot see God’s will with clarity

This is why work faithfully in the present

If not you will have a misunderstanding of God’s will

and miss His grace in your circumstances

G.  Blackaby, again

What should you do instead? First, ask God to show you His perspective on what’s happening. Look back at your situation from what you already know about God. When you face a troublesome time, the Holy Spirit will take the Word of God and help you understand the event from God’s perspective. He will reveal to you the truth of your circumstances.

H.  Always remember

God’s love for you never changes, has not changed

Never try to understand what God is like in the middle of difficult circumstances

God is sovereign depend on His sustaining grace

I.  Blackaby quote

There are some things that happen in our lives we may never understand until they are revealed in heaven.

.

VI.  Conversion of Saul to Paul

A.  Most dramatic to everyone’s amazement

==> Questions

Why Him?

Why not earlier?

Answers never forthcoming, except

This was clearly an act of God

B.  Jewish prosecutor became builder of Christian Church

Good reminder

Whether God speaks clearly, dramatically

Or quietly in an everyday pedestrian way

He is speaking to us

Always for His will and purpose

Always for our good and blessing

C.  You do not need long-term vision or understanding

Simply eyes and ears attentive to God

In scripture, prayer, and worship

Perhaps in dreams, visions, and theophanies

Always in circumstances in front of you right now

D.  Remember the boundaries

Consistent with scripture – to serve Jesus

A word of scripture – Great Commission

Confirmed within body – bystanders and  Ananias

Call to go – Saul to city, Ananias to lay on hands

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Dumb things we do, Faith, God Speaks, God Wins, God's Blessings, God's Grace, God's Presence, God's Will, Hearing God, Humility, Miracles, Prayer, Sermon, Sin, Suffering, Theophany, Trusting God, Worship and Praise and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s