-- In His Strength: October 2008 www.superfluousbanter.org

In His Strength

I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength --- Philippians 4:13

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Pastor Jim Hicks (CLC) - Too Late is Never Too Late

I didn't make it to church Saturday night, the young woman whom I go with had somewhere else she had to be. I missed service this morning because my aide had overslept her phone is her alarm clock adn she forgot to take it off vibrate). I listened to both messages online, one last night before bed and one this afternoon. Our Saturday night pastor just happened to be speaking in our Sunday morning service as he sometimes does. I had to post this up here as it is another message I want to come back to often. Shoot, I had to listen to this message twice because it was so amazing.

Too Late is Never Too Late ---Pastor Jim Hicks

Too late is never too late even when circumstances aren’t going our way
Luke 8:40
Full of faith and trust in what God is going to do
God transcends time
Expectancy within our hearts for what God can do among us
God stuff some expectation, belief in us
Vs. 41
Desperation = great motivator to take us to God
Vs. 42
How many times have we had something in our head and it didn’t go that way?
Vs. 43
Too late is never too late even when others say it is over/ will never happen
Woman with the flow of blood
“Daughter, your faith has made you well, go in peace”.
Saying all along, “God will work this out”.
What am I telling myself, what am I listening to?
Look at what God has said, not what others have said
“She touched the hem of His garment”
Even when it was over, she believed Him
Vs. 44
She touched (grabbed) a hold of His garment
She had some action to her faith
When we stop believing or acting on what God has put before us, THEN it is over
Vs. 45
The source of power – “It is not too late” - is in Jesus Christ
Come with our faith today, “Lord I want to press into you today”
Do what you need to do to press through to Him, no “microwave” prayers
Jesus is that answer
Praying through
Don’t let things destroy me
Vs.47 – 48
“Daughter” Go in peace (rescue, completeness) your faith has healed you
Lord, give me that same kind of faith today!
49 – 56
Too late is never too late even when natural hope is gone
Vs. 49
Our belief will cause us to do crazy things
Pastor Hicks “We will stalk (pursue) our future wife if we believe that is the one we want”
When things are not going well, can we still place ourselves at the mercy and trust of God?
Vs. 50
Jesus - “Do not be afraid any longer. Only believe….”
God, help us to build an atmosphere of faith and an atmosphere of belief no matter what we are facing
Vs. 51
Building an atmosphere of faith
Negative-‘ectomy’ – Jesus took the negative out of the room
Vs. 52
“Stop weeping, she has not died, but is asleep.”
He didn’t let their stuff stop what He wanted to do”
He saw something others didn’t see
Jesus wants to grab whatever is dead in your life and say “Arise!”
Return of the Spirit of God to the vision for what’s ahead
TOO LATE IS NEVER TOO LATE with GOD –Not because of who we are but of who He is
It’s the grace of God that He wants to pour into our lives

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Thursday, October 23, 2008

Facing Disappointment

Pastor Phillips was in Chi Alpha Tuesday night as I am just arriving through the door of the classroom where it's held. I was surprised to see him there. AFter saying an enthusiastic and somewhat surprised "Hi!", I asked "What brings you to Chi Alpha?" (or maybe something more like "What are YOU doing here?" He then told me he was the speaker for tonight. "Yeah!",I exclaim as I pump my fist. Little did I know how much his message and the story he told in closing would affect me.

Two areas of disappointment

Websters Dictionary definition of disappointment
not as appointed ; not as planned

dissappointed with the way things are going in our life

Acts 7:22 - 29

He's in trouble with the Egyptians AND the Hebrews
One day he is a somebody, the next - a foreigner
forry years away from what he thought was God's purpose in life
Life is not going as he planned
life is falling apart
situations not working out the way you think they should
goal/purpose - confused
no way out, no answer - nothing is going to change
Can God help me with my dissapointment

Moses is pulled toward his own brethren (me, having a disability myself, being pulled to teach children with disabilties)

He (meaning God) will have to teach me

1) God is in control of every circumstance
He is not controlled by them, He controls them
Power of Christs word holds everything together
Heb 1:3
He orders them according to His plan
Psalm 31 - My times are in Your hands
God is aware of times in my life
This is the da:y that the Lord has made, Let us rejoice and be glad in it - Psalm
whether in prison or Palace
we may not understand everything that comes our way, we can understand His nature and His purpose
Faith/Trust -I believe God and I will trust Him with what is happening in my life. I trust He will be true to His Word

2.) God has a plan for my life - unique and individual for me
He sees things that I go through in a different perspective / viewpoint
See things the way God sees them
God has a better plan than I do
Moses disappointment becomes God's great appointment
God's way became the best way, even when it took forty years to happen
Are there areas of your life where you are disappointed because of circumstances?
Put your trust in Him
God will never fail you
Joseph - dreams about what God is going to do in his life, how God was going to use him
(sold off by brothers, put in prison, falsely accused for trying to rape masters wife, prison again)
In all this Joseph did not lose sight of God
God elevates him in the end
David - kills Goliath
hero at 17
given daughter of the king to wed
lavished with gifts
taken away overnight because Saul becomes jealous adn hunts him down to take his life 17 years
God delivers him and David becomes next king of Israel. David keeps his eyes on God
Daniel lions den

3.) Disappointment in people
Our disappointments = God's great appointments
Moses disappointed in Aaron bis brother for making an idol for the people while Moses is on Mt. Sanai
Elisha and Gehezai - 2Kings 10
Nahman- dip in the river seven times
Acts 15 - Barnabas and the missionary journey (Paul and John-Mark)
Get you eyes on Jesus -Psalm 121:2
Too many times our lives are destroyed by people or circumstances
Quiet ourselves before God -
Paul- He who has begun a good workk in you will carry it on to completion until the day of christ

Jim Cymbala Fresh Faith
Wendy Alvair in Brooklyn
a romantic
dreaming of the day she would marry, raise a houseful of children
a lot harder than it looked - went through two boyfriends
disappointed with life
found a man of her dreams
engaged, planning wedding
fell apart, lonely, wasnt close enough to God to ask for help
experienced the death of her father
fiinally listened, resubmitted her life to Christ
Wendy grew in the Lord , became involved in the church
Desire to marry as strong a ever
Okay God, Where is he
watched many friends get married
30th, 35th bday went by
maybe God's plan didn't include marriage, motherhood
talked to God about her singleness
prayer time = pity party
God "you've taken eyes off Me, and put them on your circumstance"
God is the Source of all happiness
Dark cloud lifted
gave the desire to God on the altar, stopped whining about it
1 year later
(man she met 12 years earlier) this must be something from the enemy
concerned about getting involved with a babe in Christ
He wanted God's will so badly, even if it doesnt include Wendy
37 and finally married
birthed two children
keep seeking God's will
Dont settle for less
Hebrews 10:35 - don't throw away your confidence
Matt 6:33 - Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and all these things will be added to you.

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Friday, October 17, 2008

My Baby is Ten Years Old Today!!!

Alehe, my servicedog is a whoppin' ten years old today. Man time flies when your having fun! Next month it will be eight years that I will have had her. So far today, we have spent time laying on my bed in the sun together, me giving her a belly rub (her favorite thing in the world). After lunch, I think we will go for a walk somewhere, maybe to the dogpark with a toy.


Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A Giant Leap of Faith ---

There was a flier in Sunday's church bulletin. Upon reading it during our meet and greet I immediately filled it out without giving it a second thought. At the conclusion of second service I went straight to the imformation booth to turn it in. Leaving the sanctuary and heading to my van I thought to myself, "What did I just do!?"
I had just signed up to be a teacher in KidZone, Christian Life Center's children's Sunday school. It is set up so there are more than one teacher in a classroom, and so teachers rotate on who would give the lesson for each week. A lesson for November would be in the mail shortly. I am so excited!
Noel called me on my cellphone as I was leaving Wal Mart. I only had a few things I needed to pick up. She and I are in christmas choir rehearsals together and she has heard me talk about my job woes and my enthusiasm for working with young children. I had marked on the sheet of paper the spot for the intern, and she persuaded me to forgo the internship part and be a lead teacher instead. I tried to start out as a helper and work my way into the lead teacher, but she felt this was a God thing of my getting involved and her thinking of me. I decided to take a giant leap of faith and accepted the challenge.
What is God up to, if anything, I am beginning wonder. The job prospects in the secular jobmarket are proving to be futile (although I haven't given up hope just yet). Even some of the volunteer opporunities have been limited it seems although I am volunteering now at the Missoula Boys and Girls club (it's okay, not a blast, but it's okay). What is interesting is while at chi Alpha one evening we had a Missoinary speak that night and on the table were books to give away. The Title? "Out of the Comfort Zone".
My first teaching experience ever was shortly after moving to Montana, when both my mother and I were talked into becomeing Missionettes teachers. That was when I felt lead to pursue it as a profession. Then I became involved in a fourth/fifth grade classroom grading papers, helping with seatwork, and prep work for some of those lessons. I became even more interested in education.
I became interested in doing therapy og work with Alehe, and that didn't even last very long. I think I went to the hospital maybe twice, if even that. There was just no room for me a the time I thought it would be most convenient.
I couldn't help but wonder if God is not more involved in this trouble with finding work, paid or otherwise, and if He isn't preparing me for something else. Would gettin involved in kiZone have come up had I not gotten involved in either Community Hospital's Pet therapy program or Boys and Girls Club?

Now I've got a Carman Song stuck in my head -
Taking a step, taking a step of faith
Walking out on, the Promises God made
Taking a giant, leap in the air
Stepping out on nothing to find something there
Telling the doubt to wait (echo: wait wait wait)
Taking a step of faith

God, renewing my confidence in teaching young children?

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Sunday, October 12, 2008

New Beginnings Saturday Night Service 10-11-08

How to Thrive in Babylon---Thrive in a culture that is against you (Daniel 1:1 – 7)
What dreams and visions do you have?
Preparation – what’s needed to go further in the things of God
I have been given a lot of potential and a lot of promise (to accomplish what God wants me to in His kingdom)
The kingdom will impact people’s lives
What kind of potential and promise has God put into me?
Potential and promise – God given gifts to us
Preparation, what brings those things out to affect other people’s lives
Preparation in following God - Life and keeping our eyes on God as we go through life
There is a door somewhere, and we are the key to open that door.
Jeremiah –Prophecy, God was going to stir the pot
Daniels name changed, city besieged, nation has been in sin
Life as you know it is now different
Things that you hold dear are being taken and used for evil
David was forced to learn something false and demonic
Kidnapped, captured, displaced,
Taken from the familiar and put into unknown territory
Daniel – God is My Judge
How do you do when your world is shaken up?
We will remain strong if we build upon the things of God
His world was shaken but he was not
How do we thrive when that happens?
God disrupts the lives of those He is getting ready to use
(Moses, Abraham, Joshua, judges, Esther, Deborah, David, Saul, Peter, you)
The disruption in your life may actually be Divine direction
The things wrong in my life I may be complaining about may be the very gifts of God because he wants to bring out the potential and promise in you. (Preparation to see how we’ll respond)
When our world is shaken, God is doing something.
Heb. 12:28
(If your world is shaking you’re holding on to shakable things – Barry McGuire)
Psalm 62:1 – 2)
Psalm 15
How do we respond under pressure? (HOPE –Humility, Optimism, Perseverance, Enthusiasm)
Humility (3:1)
Submitted to the faulty system and earned the trust of others to be heard
God, I am going to submit my life to Your plan
Promise and potential will not trump preparation
Don’t ever say “That’ll never happen to me because……” because it could, and God could use that to prepare you in life
The way to greatness is to serve.
Bob Dylan –“You Gotta Serve Somebody”
Goes against what the world tells us
Optimism (Vs. 2)
The Lord gave….into his hand
The Lord did this
Next time your world gets shaken…say “God did this!”
God, You are in control
Panic and despair are not from God
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and thanksgiving
Proverbs -Anxiety will wear us down
Peter -Cast all your care on Him…
Today remember that God and God alone is able to care for all that exists. We can trust our smallest and largest concern to the wisdom and love of God
Vs. 8
Balance when it’s needed, stability, composure
Stability to pick and choose your battles
Opposite of poise – drama
Jesus Christ had great poise – before His accusers, on the cross
Vs. 17 – 20
God gave them intelligence and knowledge in every branch of literature and wisdom so that Daniel even understood all kinds of visions and dreams…
Daniel excelled in all kinds of challenged God put before him
(1828) enthusiasm – infused with a Divine spirit
Holiness- being the best you can be at where God has put you
What does our nation need?
By Gods grace we can thrive
What are we facing? Is our world being shaken?
He knows exactly where we’re at!
In Jesus Christ, these things become authentic…no matter WHAT happens
Give God your shaken, shaking world

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