Sow That
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ConnectUs Church Audio Podcast
ConnectUs Church Audio Podcast

Episode · 2 years ago

Sow That

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Our choices have results and consequences. If we understand why we are making our choices it might help us predict the outcome. Do we make choices "so that I" or do we make choices "so that you?" Only one leads to life. Which one are you choosing?

Well, I'm never given a sermon from a car before and I've also never sat in a car outside of a hospital as I've waited for my little daughter to go through a procedure test on our heart either. So just figured we'd this do both at the same time. And we had a great day yesterday at the real cinemas for our first practice service, and it's great. We've been waiting for that day for a long, long time. We were praying, we were meeting in our house, we had, you know, a bunch of other things that we were doing every all the way since January, and so it was awesome to finally be in a space, in a place where we can meet and get together and invite people to join us, and we just had an awesome time. But we reminded ourselves that this was just the beginning. And so whenever we wait for something for so long and then we realize wow, it's just the beginning, that can be an overwhelming thought at times. And so yesterday is again. As we were working on all that stuff and setting everything up, we couldn't get our live stream or recording the work. So this is a good way to do that as well. So we wait so long for something like when we, you know, date that special boy or a special girl and you pray and you wonder and you think and you go out and do fun things and you to have these conversations and years go by and and you're thinking, and maybe this will be the one. And and so then you get engaged and then there's the whole wedding planning process and then it's the wedding day. And how awesome of a day is that, a super celebration of your relationship, but of your marriage. And then you have a great night, you wake up in the morning and you realize, Whoa, it's just the beginning. Maybe, maybe that's a little, a little deep for a Monday, rainy morning and sitting outside the hospital, but let's think. You know, you're on the couch and and you you're watching a show and you get that desire, that urge to satisfy your hunger with a little a little snack, and so you got to kick down the the reclining chair that you're sitting in and kind of wander over to the kitchen and trying to remember which can that your snacks are in, and then you gotta, you know, open the can the door and hope nothing falls out on you. Is it's all stuffed in there and maybe you find, you know you're one of your half open bags of chips that you think isn't so stale, and so you bring that and you maybe find a bowl to put them in and you take your bowl with your chips back to back to your couch where you're watching your show, and you put the bowl down next to you and you hope that it won't fall off, but you know, five seconds later you're picking up the chips off the floor and finally you sit down, you're ready to watch your show, and you would just wonder was all of that effort really worth it? Was All of that planning,...

...all of those decisions, all of those choices really worth the outcome in the end? Because, you know what, the longer you sit there and watch that show, you're going to have that same exact urge, that same exact desire in you know, the few minutes or hours. And so it's just the beginning. We make choices every day for a million different things. We choose to get married, we choose to go get a snack from the counch, we choose to get in our car, we choose to go to our job, and our choices affect things. They have consequences, they have results, they have effects on you, they have effects on the people around you and they have effects on the amount of money that you have or that you don't have, and they affect your relationship with God. And what I'm describing here in this message is what the Apostle Paul says and glaciers, chapter six, a letter he wrote to the church in Glacia in the first century. He says you reap what you so, you reap what you so. This is what Paul says. He says do not be deceived. God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh, will reap destruction. Whoever sows to please the spirit, from the spirit, will reap eternal life. Let us not become weary and doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who are in the family, belong to the family of believers. And guys, we take a minute here to pause and thank you for your word, thank you for your love for us, thank you for being there with us, no matter where we are. And God, as we sit in the hospital parking line, as we sit in our jobs or at our homes or on our way to work, or wherever we may find ourselves, maybe we just realize that you are there with us and because of that we can find comfort, we can find rest, we can find hope in you, in Jesus name, Amen. So I want to talk to you this day about this idea of reaping what you sow from a couple different angles. I think it will apply to your life and it also applied to our church as well. So let's think back first from this important point, that about that marriage illustration. And let's say, for example, that God told you exactly who you were going to marry, you know, back in high school, let's say, and it was one...

...of your classmates, and you've never spoken to this person before, you've never had a conversation, but you just knew that God had told you that this girl, this boy, was going to be that special person that you were going to marry one day. and I wonder how would knowing the result, how would knowing the count the rest, the consequence of your choices. How and knowing what came next. How would that affect the way that you interacted with this person? Would you like, every time you walk down the hallway, wonder or is this person going to look at me today? With this person going to notice me today? You know? And when? Maybe when you worked up the curves to finally start the conversation, like what would you talk about on the First Day, knowing that you were talking to your future husband or future wife? Well, what matters? What would you talk about in that moment? And as the days go on, you might wonder, like can I mess this up, like God told me this was going to happen, which, by the way, guys and girls, that's a very bad pickuplind. Don't ever say, Hey, God told me the date you so let's go out on the day. Let's not. Let's not do that. But you wonder, can can I mess this up, like what if I say the wrong thing? Or what if we go to the wrong place on a date? or or what if I do something that she or he doesn't like? Like if God said it and it'll happen, when, like, can I mess it up and the the point that I'm trying to make in this silly illustration is we got to get the order right. We reap what we so. We don't so into what we know we're going to reap. We so we reap what we so we get the result of the thing that we plan. When we plant a seed, you have to put it in the ground and you have to wait for it and it has to grow and then you reap, you harvest, you take in what has grown. You don't so the seed after the plant has already grown. You got to get the order right and they'll order matters, because God is saying to you and God is saying to us, do you trust me? Do you trust me? Do you trust me to put this seed into the ground and let it just be there until it has grown and then you can take in the outcome. Then you can take in the result. He's saying, do you trust me? We want to know the end result. We want to know is this going to work out? Is this going to be worth it? But God is saying, do you trust me? And so our life is a battle of trust, and this is what Paul continues to say in these verses and Glacians, chapter six and verse a. He continues. He says whoever so's to please their flesh, from the Flash, will reap destruction, and whoever sows to please the spirit, from the spirit will reap eternal life.

So you've got two directions that you can sow in. You can so to please the flesh or you can so to please the spirit. And basically God saying which one do you trust more? Which one looks better, which one leads to a better harvest? And so, given the choice between destruction and eternal life, you would think that everyone would choose eternal life. But if you're like me, I don't think that choice is as easy as it sounds. Let me explain what I mean this way. So you're on the couch watching your favorite show. You want her to go get snacks and you come back and you know, drop a fuel on the floor and you pick it up and you go through that whole episode. But here's the question. Why did you do that? Why did you make the choices that you did to go and satisfy that desire? Why did you do that? Was it so that I could satisfy my desire for US snack or hunger or was it so that I could not be as bored as I'm sitting there watching this show? See If our answer to the why question is so that, I so, that, I so that, I it will lead to destruction. which direction are you sewing into? Please yourself, your flesh, or to please the spirit? Now, of course we have to take care of ourselves. We have to do that, like we have to eat right when we're hungry right, we have to sleep, we have to exercise. These are just basic things that we have to do to take care of ourselves. But I think about even that statement for a minute. Are We caring for ourselves like we came up with some magic formula that, you know, makes our body feel better? And No, I don't think so. I think what we're doing, as we care for ourselves, as were, honoring God by doing what he designed our bodies to do in order for us to function well and at a hundred percent capacity. And and so in that way, we're honoring God by taking care of ourselves. We're not some in our own power and own strength doing it all ourselves. You know what I'm saying. And so let's bring it to the church now, let's bring it to the church. Now, I could say that we are, or I am leading a church that is meeting in the real cinemas, movie theater, so that I can...

...have a comfy seat where I can turn the heat on and recline. I could say that. I could say that I'm starting a new church to run away from my old, bad church right or I could say that I'm starting, we're meeting in this movie theater so that I can feel better about my relationship with God, so that I so that, I so that I. or I could say we're here in this movie theater so that you can have a place to experience God, or we're starting this church so that you can find a place, a community of people that can enjoy each other's company and love one another and encourage one another and spur one another on to love and to good deeds. See, there's two perspectives that you can have on your life. Is it so that I is everything through the Lens of me, of I ii, what's best for I? Or are you aware of, and are you living for, what's best for others? For you, next time you go to the doctors and see an eye chart, just think, am I seeing the world through I what's best for I, or can it be a you chart what's best for you, what's best for others, and so sewing into what's best for I so that I and sewing what's best for others, so that you, leads to two completely different results, so that I leads to destruction and so that you leads to eternal life. And now you might be asking, which is a really good question if you're falling along well as you say, Kevin, these verses don't exactly say that. They say if you live to please the flesh and it'll lead to destruction, but if you lead, live to please the spirit, not others, the spirit, it will lead to eternal life. And of course you would be right. But I want you to see through this message and through these verses that Paul has such a tight connection between living to please the spirit and living to please or not to please, but to do what's best for others so that others can benefit, so that others can find a relationship with God. This is what Paul says. He says let us not become weary and doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. So do you see it in these verses? Paul wants us to do good, like we should just do good generally. Right, when you're by yourself alone, we should be doing good between us and God, who's there with us.

We want to be just doing good for ourselves and we want to be doing good to develop a relationship with God, doing good to pray, doing good to study God's word, doing good to worship, doing good to live and to give. And I think, though, as Paul says in these verses, as we have opportunity, let us do good to who? To all people, all people, all people, all people of different classes, different economic status is, different races, different religious ideologies, all people, as we have the opportunity, and if you're joining us in any way a part of this new church, I think starting a new church is probably the best opportunity to engage with and care for and love for and do good to all people. We have such an incredible opportunity right now through connect US church, to care for all people and I can't wait to see what the harvest is gonna be. So we could look at all people. Let us do good to all people. But then Paul writes, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. So there's something special about those that call this their church family, their spiritual family, their community that's they're a part of. And so we want to do good, especially to each other. And so this is one of the big truths that God designed humans and God design the world to function in that I think oftentimes many, many people miss because we don't drift in this direction that I'm going to say. If we here's the point, if we care for all people, if we have a perspective for others, if we care for all people, then we will do a good job, or have a good chance of doing a good job, for caring for each other. But if we we shoot for caring for each other and forget about caring for all people, then we will miss doing good and caring for all people and we will most likely miss also caring for each other. It's just the way God design this world to function. Companies, groups, organization, schools, you name it, they all have the same philosophy, the same set of rules that they're playing by. If you focus on the people that are there and that you have, you most likely won't do a good job of caring for those people. But if you're planning for something, caring for something, doing good for something bigger than just your group,...

...you'll most likely, as you're planning, as you're praying together, as you're figuring this out, as you're working together, as you're living on mission together for something bigger than just yourselves, there God does something and that your little group can actually care for one another and do good to one another really, really well. And so we reap what we sew and we trust God that were sewing in the right direction. We're not sewing so that I, but we're sewing so that you and as we do this we're taking steps of faith to follow God and live in this amazing, abundant life that God has given us. I wish we would knew the answer. I wish we knew, you know, the result of Kinsley's test and procedure in just a few hours, but we don't. And so we got to trust, one step at a time, and so into the right direction and trust the outcome will come. We got to do that. I got to do that right now, and we got to do that in all of our choices into the future. And so Paul gives us one main command, one main encouragement that I want to give you as we wrap up this message, and that simply don't give up. Don't give up. Don't give up on your job, don't give up on your relationship, don't give up on your faith in God. Don't give up. The harvest comes eventually. You have to plant the seed, you have to wait for the seed to grow in order to reap in the harvest. We want it now, we want the outcome to be known, we want to know exactly what's going to happen, but we got to plant the scene and we got to let it grow and we ultimately got to trust God. Don't give up. The harvest is coming. We just have to wait for it. And so as a church, as connect US church, we don't want to give up on being focused on Jesus, like we're just getting started, and we got this so into this idea that Jesus makes a difference in our world, he makes a difference in our lives and we want to glorify him with everything that we do. We have to so into this idea, make choices that invest in this idea that we can't be a part of a church so that I can benefit from it. We can't be here for ourselves. We are here to honor God and so that others can know God and grow in their relationship with God. We are here to be focused on Jesus. Don't give up and being focused on Jesus and don't give up...

...on developing authentic relationships, like our relationships with people and our relationship with God are all developing in one way, whether good or maybe not so good, and we value as a church, the ability to meet people right where they are at, and whether we're doing that in our groups or or on a Sunday, and as we have Sunday services and people are able to get involved in different ways. We want to value the people over the position. Every time, a God has gifted you with specific ability, specific gifts that only you have and that you have to bring to this world, and I don't want to fit you into some box just to say that we have all that covered, like we want to invest in you, to say what's best for you and get you plugged in into that particular area so that you can flourish, so we value that position of people over position every time, and so we don't develop authentic relationships so that I can have more friends, or we don't develop authentic relationships so that I can have someone to take care of me when I'm in need. No, you have to give it to get it. You have to sew it to reap it. You don't reap it and then you start sewing and I believe this is a huge opportunity for our new church to be a place for people that want community, need community, to feel like they can belong. So as we sew into others lives, we invite them into our life and they see Jesus in us. We develop authentic relationship so that you can see Jesus in me, in our love and our care and our praying and our sharing of Jesus with you. And don't give up on having fun. You know, I mentioned to I chart earlier and just because I'm silly, things like that like those are some memorable experiences, some things that we can experience together that are fun in some way. And when we have fun, we were authenticating forgiveness, which is a key component of lasting relationships. You know, try to have fun with somebody that you haven't forgiven. It's difficult, maybe impossible, to do that, you know, and through this process of starting a new church and moving into the movie theater and doing things online, you know, the stream not working or whatever the case may be, like, I'm going to do things, where are we all are going to do things that are going to heard an offend or leave out or one another. And you know, personally, for me, I know I will do that, and so I just want to say I'm sorry and I want to ask you to forgive me, because that is the...

...only way that we're going to continue to have a relationship that lasts and I want that. And as we have fun together, then we can say to one another like yes, I'm enjoying my time together, I've forgiven you, and we can continue to have and develop an authentic relationship. And so we don't give up on having fun to other to see we don't have fun together so that I can feel better about myself, or we don't have fun together so that I can have fun and everyone else can get pushed to the side and put down, and we have fun so that you can have a good relationship with me, so that we can live it out and we don't want to give up. Don't give up on Biblical teaching. No, Biblical teaching isn't always what our world wants to hear. You know, there's some stuff in the Bible that just doesn't go with the popular culture, the popular mode today. But we believe that there is no book more relevant and more helpful than today than the Bible. And so as we approached the Bible, as we listen the sermons and learn from God's word. You know, we don't do that so that I can decide what I like in the Bible or what I don't like in the Bible. We don't study Biblical the Bible and engage in Biblical teaching so that I can know more about God and so that I can grow in my relationship with God. Like that's part of it. But we do it. We'd study the Bible, we engage in Biblical teaching so that you can also learn, so that you can also grow in your relationship with God, as I learn, and we study and engage in Biblical teachings so that you can see a difference in the way that I live. Don't give up on being generous. We plan to give our time and our talent and our money for others, not for ourselves. You know, I it's not a goal to see how much money that we can amass and accumulate for our selves. We don't go to work and get that paycheck so that I can have more money. We don't just take in as much as we can. Know we want to be generous with what God has given us. We are generous so that you can have what you need. We serve with our time and our talents so that you can be blessed, so that you can take a step in your relationship with God. And as an organization of a church, I want our organization, the way we've structured ourselves and we we budget and do those types of things. I WANT OUR CHURCH TO BE Super...

Generous and I'm excited to see how that's going to play out. I got some awesome ideas that I think it's just going to make a such an impact in our community and our families in our world. I can't wait to see that happen. But right now is we're getting started and we're relying on the general city of US individuals to support the Ministry of this church, the launch of this church and I want to invite you to give generously to support connect US church as we launch, and so if you would consider giving a special gift right now to help us launch strong in the movie theater, that would be awesome and for many of you I'll be if you haven't received the latter already, I'll be calling you soon to set up a time where we can get together. I could show you the church budget, we could plan and pray together about how God is going to provide through us, through you, this launch of connect US church. So we need to be generous. We can't give up on being generous. What God has given us is for the benefit of other people. We honor God when we do that. And finally, don't give up on multiplying disciples. You know I love you all. I loved when we were meeting in our house and we had awesome, awesome group. God has brought you specifically here right now for a great purpose and a great reason that. God has brought an awesome group together and I loved it. But the mission of our church, the mission that Jesus gives those who follow him, as so much greater, so much bigger than just a handful of few of US meeting in one place, and so I like to think about this. When at Lash and I were on a mission strip to Guatemala number of years ago and their public transportation system is a bunch of school buses and they they called them chicken buses, and the joke was, you know, how many Guatemalans can fit in a chicken bus? And the answer to this joke was one more, one more Guatemalan can always fit into a chicken bus. It's just the way with their rules, their laws, you know, they just shove as many people in there as possible. At LASHA and I drove in the back of a pickup truck, you know, regular size pickup truck, and there was probably twelve of us in the back of this pickup truck as we were driving through the town. And then I just remember, you know, we pulled up to this this Bible study one night and this minivan pulled up in about like fifteen adult came out of this mini van. They just pack them in. But the joke and I just stuck with me ever since I heard it, because there's room for one more. There's always room for one more in our life, in our church, there's...

...room for one more don't give up. A multiplying disciples. And this same dynamic is built into connect US church. Our mission, our vision, is connect you to God's next step for your life. And that, you, is really intentional. Now we're not connecting people, were not connecting man and women that we're connecting you, you as personal or connecting you your family member, you your friend, you your neighbor. And sometimes I get tongue tied as I'm explaining this phrase in different ways, because I'm saying connecting you to God's next step for your life. But but the the way that pronouns all work out, it doesn't always work. And and I love that about this phrase, because our church is about you, it's connecting you to God's next step for your life. And as you internalize that, as you take that in and you're explaining this new thing to your friend, you're saying, yeah, this church really cares about me. They want to connect me to God's next step for my life. I love that. And as you're saying that, it's true, but that's not our mission. Our mission is to connect you to God's next step for your life. And so baked into that statement is this idea of what we take in is not just for us, but it's so that others can benefit. What we take in, we can and should be giving out, and so we reap what we sow. And if we keep selling these things and don't give up, then the harvest is coming, I believe it. It's coming in our own life as we overcome sin and strengthen our relationship with God or find a relationship with God, and it's coming in our own life as we pass it on to the next person. So, ultimately, when we live so that you are, we are living a life that is honoring God with everything that we do, and this idea of so that you is really what God is about. Like, yes, there is one God and he alone should be worshiped, but this God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. God so loved you, and if God so loved you, the Church we I so love you and I can't wait to see how God is going to bring this harvest of lives eternally changed by the Gospel of Jesus Christ, this Jesus who died on the Cross,...

...the pay a penalty for your sin, was buried and rose again the third day so that you could have eternal life when you just believe and trust in him. And we want to help believers take their next steps and growing in their faith, discovering their gifts and learning how to pass what God has done in their life on to other people. And we want to do this one step at a time. To God, thank you for the opportunity to be here today, wherever we are, and think about how you are working in our life. Help us to trust you, one step at a time, one choice at a time, when see at a time. Lord, we don't know what the harvest is going to bring, we don't know what you're going to produce, we don't know how it's all going to work out in the end, but I pray that we can make a choice today to love you, to follow you, to trust you, to do good, to do good to all people, to honor you with the way that we live and care for ourselves so that others can benefit. Lord, help us to do that. Jesus name, I pray. Amen. Thanks for joining us today. We'll see you later.

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