What Do You See?
March 12, 2017 • Jason Smith
WHAT DO YOU SEE? GIVE- freely transfer the possession of something to someone RETURN- to put, or send something back to a place or person When we return a gift to God, we are transferring something back to what already belongs to Him. Luke 21:1-4 He looked up and saw the rich dropping their offerings into the temple treasury. 2 He also saw a poor widow dropping in two tiny coins.[a] 3 “I tell you the truth,” He said. “This poor widow has put in more than all of them. 4 For all these people have put in gifts out of their surplus, but she out of her poverty has put in all she had to live on.” What Do You See? Do You see... An OBLIGATION or an OPPORTUNITY v.1- He looked up and saw... Jesus looked up and saw their hearts and their attitudes. Obligation means that you are morally and legally bound to do something. Luke 20:45-47 While all the people were listening, He said to His disciples, 46 “Beware of the scribes, who want to go around in long robes and who love greetings in the marketplaces, the front seats in the synagogues, and the places of honor at banquets. 47 They devour widows’ houses and say long prayers just for show. These will receive greater punishment.” The rich were giving out of obligation and their hears where full of deception. It's time we change our attitude so that we get the Master's attention. The rich saw it as an OBLIGATION, whereas the widow saw it as an OPPORTUNITY. V.2-3 He also saw a poor widow dropping in two tiny coins.[a] 3 “I tell you the truth,” He said. “This poor widow has put in more than all of them. Opportunity- a set of circumstances that makes it possible to do something. God may be asking you to change your perspective so that you can get the Master's attention! When you do something because you have been given the opportunity, then the Master takes notice. What do you See? Do you see... A SACRIFICE or a SMIDGEN v. 4 For all these people have put in gifts out of their surplus, but she out of her poverty has put in all she had to live on.” She was willing to RETURN IT ALL, and not settle with just giving a portion. Does Jesus have all of your- -time -effort -marriage -family -finances -future -failures -triumphs The widow had nothing, but was willing to return it all. A sacrifice is when you see more of a need in an opportunity than taking the opportunity to meet your own need. The widows gift was not for her. She gave all and then planned on dying. her sacrificial gift was actually for others in an act of obedience. And that is what made Jesus look up. "Sacrificial giving is parting with what we'd rather keep. It's keeping the old and giving away the new or giving away both. The giving of the first Christians was spontaneous, unguarded, and uncalculated. Sacrificial giving appears to be unreasonable. In reality, though, it's perfectly reasonable. It brings God glory, meets other's needs, and ensures us eternal rewards. And all the while God takes care of our immediate needs. Sacrificial giving makes no human sense. But we are to think like Christ, not the world." Randy Alcorn "When she gave that one, insignificant mite, she gave her next meal, her next wardrobe, her next gift for a friend, her next boat, her next manicure and pedicure, her next whatever. Yes, she gave more than a simple monetary item; she gave all she had! Now she had nothing left. No more resources. No more savings. She had given it away to the blessed Savior, a sacrifice that prompted the Almighty God of the universe to sit up and take notice." So that proves that giving everything isn't a number; it's not an amount. It's an attitude of sacrifice! That's what tells the story of your heart." Some of us are giving God a SMIDGEN, instead of a SACRIFICE out of a heart of obedience. When you give and when you serve, you are making the greatest investment into someone else's life.
ENOUGH with the EXCUSES
March 5, 2017 • Jason Smith
Title: ENOUGH with the EXCUSES Luke 9:57-58 As they were traveling on the road someone said to Him, "I will follow You wherever You go!" Jesus told him, "Foxes have dens, and birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay His head." #1: willing BUT unable (The excuse of Comfort) willing- ready, eager, or prepared to do something. unable-lacking the skill, means, or opportunity to do something Matthew 16:24-27 Then Jesus said to HIs disciples, "If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of Me will find it. What will it benefit a man if he gains the whole world yet loses his life? Or what will a man give in exchange for his life? For the Son of Man is going to come with His angels in the glory of His Father, and then He will reward each according to what he has done. **Excuses will always give us permission to settle for less than God's best** #2: able BUT unwilling (The excuse of Convenience) v. 59-60 Then He said to another, "Follow Me." "Lord," he said, "first let me go bury my father." But He told him, "Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and spread the news of the kingdom of God." You are listening more to the voice of failure than listening to the voice of victory. He says, "Lord." He is saying: you are master, you are ruler, you have authority over me, you have influenced me to follow you, you are sovereign and you are king. and then he says........"FIRST ME." Lord, and me first, can never be in the same sentence. Choose who is going to be Lord of your life. If Jesus is Lord enough to save us, He is Lord enough to lead us. He was allowing something else or someone else to take precedence over Christ's call and invitation to follow Him. **We either surrender our lives to Him, or risk eternity without Him** Do YOU Commit?? #3: Would've been...BUT (The excuse of Distractions) v. 61-62 Another also said, "I will follow You, Lord, but first let me go and say good-bye to those at my house." But Jesus said to him, "No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God." **We are only to do what Jesus says and not tell Him what we are to do** Don't make deals or bargain with Jesus. Trade in your COMFORT, trade in your CONVENIENCE, and trade in your DISTRACTIONS so that you can become a COMMITTED follower of Jesus. ENOUGH WITH THE EXCUSES!!!