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Here is a sermon by Marcus "Goodie" Goodlow, at Ecclesia Church:
It's based on 1 Samuel 7:1-10, about the Israelites turning back towards the Lord, but then being attacked by their enemies. They beckon God to show up and save them, and He does!
In the sermon Goodie says, "Courage to sacrifice is the prelude to the phenomenal." What an awesome statement! I've been thinking about courage a lot lately (and have written about it). It's often believed that self-preservation is basic human nature, so just embrace it and get what you want in life. But are these the folks that are truly celebrated in life? No! It's the ones that sacrifice themselves, through life or in death, that receive the highest honor. It's also what Jesus did.
So the next time you're given the opportunity to inconvenience yourself for the good of someone else, take it! Then see what God does! We have been given "every spiritual blessing in Christ," (see below) which means we can expect big things from God!
- Samuel had never visited a place and left it destroyed
- Samuel never wasted a word
- 1 Samuel 3:19 - "The LORD was with Samuel as he grew up, and he let none of Samuel's words fall to the ground."
- Are we willing to confront our own compromises?
- Pride is having an inaccurate view of self
- Our worst is never so bad that we are beyond God's grace
- And neither is our best that we don't need God's grace
- Ephesians 1:3 - " Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ."
- We have been given "every spiritual blessing"
- What are you compromising in when it comes to God? Where are you settling?
- Humility means having an accurate view of yourself
- Don't be afraid to ask for help
- Or ask people to help - utilizing their gifts
- We all need a spotter - life can get weighty
- 1 Samuel 7:10 - "While Samuel was sacrificing the burnt offering, the Philistines drew near to engage Israel in battle. But that day the Lord thundered with loud thunder against the Philistines and threw them into such a panic that they were routed before the Israelites."
- Every once in a while, God intervenes and something out of the ordinary happens
- We all need "that day"
- Courage to sacrifice is the prelude to the phenomenal
- Time, resources, talents, etc.
- Being connected to a movement - advancing a cause that is bigger than yours
- God is in the business of defining moments