Here are the extended notes to Part 8 of our series GAME PLAN presented at a2 Church on Sunday, February 27. Sorry about the delay in getting this up...
The entire podcast of the message is available on the website of a2 Church or via iTunes by clicking here.
Game Plan - Part 8
February 27, 2011
Acknowledgement: Thanks to John Ortberg and his message, “Life’s Too Short To…Work All The Time” for most of the insights contained in this message, especially the concepts of "abounding" and "abiding."
FIRST IMPORTANT WORD: “ABOUND”
1 Corinthians 15:58 (ESV), Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.
1 Corinthians 15:58 (NLT), “Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.”
1 Corinthians 15:58 (MSG), “…don’t hold back. Throw yourselves into the work of the Master…”
Colossians 3:23 (Holman Christian Standard Bible), Whatever you do, do it enthusiastically, as something done for the Lord and not for men… (See Colossians 3:17 and 1 Corinthians 10:31)
Colossians 3:23 (NIV ‘84), Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart…
Genesis 2:15 (ESV), The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.
iMPORTANT: This was before sin, before the fall and before the curse… God created man, placed Him in the garden and commanded him to work… Before there were bills to pay, a family to support or a child to put through college, God put Adam to WORK…
“Before God gave Adam britches, He gave Adam a job…” ~ Max Lucado
THOUGHT: Unfortunately, when sin entered the picture, it changed the nature of work…
Genesis 3:17, “From this point on, all your life you will struggle to scratch a living… You will labor by the sweat of your brow…”
THOUGHT: Work is part of what God Himself does… God creates… He works… He likes it when we work… Over and over again throughout the Bible, God says, “I want you to excel at what you do… I want you to abound… I want you to take the gifts, talents, abilities and experiences I’ve given you and develop them to their fullest potential… I want you to discover the deepest passions that have been hard wired into your make up, and I want you to fan those desires into burning flames… I want you to make a difference in this world…”
Ephesians 2:10 (NIV ’84), For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Ecclesiastes 9:10 (ESV), Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might, for there is no work or thought or knowledge or wisdom in Sheol, to which you are going.
SECOND IMPORTANT WORD: “ABIDE”
John 15:4 (ESV), Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.
John 15:4 (AMP), Dwell in Me, and I will dwell in you. [Live in Me, and I will live in you…]
John 15:4 (MSG), Live in me. Make your home in me just as I do in you.
Psalm 23:1-3 (NLT), The Lord is my shepherd;
I have all that I need. 2 He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams. 3 He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name.
Matthew 11:28 (NLT), Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.”
Two “Larger Than Life” Goals:
I want to abide and to abound…
Four Important Questions:
1. When can I expect the tension between “abounding” and “abiding” to go away?
Answer: When you die…
Mark 1:35 (NIV 2011), Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.
2. Who is responsible for balancing the tension?
Answer: I am. You are.
3. What are the consequences of ignoring the tension?
Example of Consequences: (See Elijah – 1 Kings 18-19)
1 Kings 18:21 (MSG), Elijah challenged the people: “How long are you going to sit on the fence? If God is the real God, follow him; if it’s Baal, follow him. Make up your minds!” Nobody said a word; nobody made a move.
1 Kings 18:45 (NLT), Then the Lord gave special strength to Elijah. He tucked his cloak into his belt and ran ahead of Ahab’s chariot all the way to the entrance of Jezreel.
Five Consequences of Ignoring The Tension:
(Getting Out of Balance)
• Fear That Becomes Overwhelming
1 Kings 19:3, Elijah was afraid and fled for his life…
• Fatigue (Emotional and Physical Exhaustion)
• Isolation and Loneliness
4. What practices will help me balance the tension between “abounding” and “abiding”?
• Keep focused on the stuff that matters most.
Matthew 6:33 (ESV), But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
1 Corinthians 10:31 (NLT), So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.
• Develop the art and habit of being fully present.
• Do life in community.
Hebrews 10:25 (NIV ’84), Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another–and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
• Plan and prioritize your leisure time.
• Live with a sense of rhythm.
Exodus 20:8-10 (NLT), Remember to observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. 9 You have six days each week for your ordinary work, 10 but the seventh day is a Sabbath day of rest dedicated to the Lord your God. On that day no one in your household may do any work.
Example: Elijah (1 Kings 18-19)
1 Kings 19:12 (NLT), And after the earthquake there was a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire there was the sound of a gentle whisper.
Matthew 11:28-29 (MSG), Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. 29Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you.
Choosing To Cheat by Andy Stanley
The Me I Want To Be by John Ortberg