We didn’t know what to expect this Sunday, maybe only 3 or 4 kids… but there were something like 15! Again, they sat “enraptured” with the story reading. The Mom finds it a little depressing downstairs though, and will be glad for a break next Sunday, especially to disabuse people of the notion that she’s taking over the children’s ministry!
Sam recorded the sermon for us… uh oh, one can make a lot more notes with a keyboard on hand while you’re listening! We’ll try to keep them brief though.
I think his main message was that although it’s human nature to focus on ourselves, there is a world out there that we are called to serve (Craig’s “MO”!)… sounds kind of hard when you think of how we are hurting, in light of recent events at our church; but he started by talking about how he was longing to be with us a couple of weeks ago even though he was at a fancy church in Atlanta–his love for us comes through, so we are ready to listen to him.
We were quite interested to see that he said the very same thing that we were saying a few days ago: pointing out how quickly praise turns to rejection (remember–the Sunday before “IT happened”, the praise was so good); but our love for one another need not turn to criticism, rejection, etc.
The scripture reference was the one where Jesus read in the synagogue, the part where it says “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me… he has anointed me…” etc., and when he sat down all eyes were upon him. This was just after his temptation, and he “returned filled with the Holy Spirit”. Craig’s “Four Simple Points of what being filled with the Holy Spirit might look like for us” is a pretty good summary of the sermon:
1. Keep your eyes on Jesus
–He was filled with the Holy Spirit.
–He said that he would be lifted up “as the serpent was lifted up in the wilderness”, which if you remember the story, when people looked, they were healed/saved.
2. Stay in the Word
–not just once a week (“please”, as Craig said).
–It’s up to each and every one of us to be in the Word 7 days a week
–It’s not just a job for “professionals” to hear & communicate what God is saying, but for each and every one of us together.
–From the Word will come direction and healing.
3. A) Believe the Best
B) Talk TO one another, not ABOUT one another
This is impossible without the Holy Spirit, and also includes listening and learning.
4. Get Involved
–Christianity is not a Spectator Sport.
–Christianity is about us pulling together, all hands on board.
–We will be asked by God to do the unexpected, the impossible.
But Jesus has given us his spirit, his anointing, his gifting, his mandate, his enabling, his work, his plan, etc. It’s about him being lifted up, and reports about HIM (not us) will spread.