As a lot of you know, I am seldom away from the Good Shepherd pulpit.
Yesterday was one of those days.
I felt my daughter’s wedding in Nashville, Tennessee, was a good reason to miss.
So I asked Ron Dozier, our Pastor Of Missions & Community Impact, to open up our ThanksLiving 2018 series.
And that he did, with a very good message called “Yours, Mine, And Ours.” Here it is:
While entering Lake Wylie elementary on my way to pick up my Reading Buddy. I happened to glance up and see that some of the ceiling tiles had these beautiful art designs. (Picture) While checking in at the office I asked, who painted those tiles in the hallway and when was it done?
The office staff said, the former art teacher, as a gift to the school painted those before she left a couple of years ago. No way I said. You mean I have been walking down that hallway for two plus years and never even noticed the work of art teacher right above my head, WOW!
In the hallways at the same school displayed on the walls you will find students work (Picture). I love that because it gives me an opportunity praise my Reading Buddy for the work he has done. When I do he really smiles, the praise really has an impact on his life.
Praise can go a long way. It is a free gift that we can give to bless others. It is our way of saying, I see that! It is way of being a human highlighter.
What we will discover through our passage there are things we can give that have the ability to impact others.
So, turn with me to 1 Chronicles 28:3-4 let us read that.
King David had it in his heart to build God a temple so the people would have a permanent place to gather together in worship and service to God rather than a portable one. Here we find some of David’s final words, which provide a portrait of a man after God’s own heart. After four decades of service to Israel, King David, now old, looked for the last time into the faces of his trusted followers. David heard the Lord’s “no” and quietly accepted it without resentment. David chose to focus on what God had allowed him to do—to reign as king over Israel, to establish his son Solomon over the kingdom, and to pass the dream on to him. Then, in a beautiful prayer, David praised the greatness of God, thanking Him for His many blessings, and then interceded for the people of Israel and for their new king, Solomon. Praise is one of the gifts we have been given that can have a tremendous impact on others. It is what King David did even despite disappointment.
We don’t praise the Lord because we have no problems. We praise Him because He is worthy. David did not withhold the gift of praise because of disappointment, He remembered God’s faithfulness over time. Rehearsing his journey, saying Yet the LORD. It is the sentiment of the Psalmist in Psalm 43:5 when he asks himself then reminds himself (UP ON SCREEN)
Why, my soul are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my savior and my God.
That is exactly what David did take a look at 1 Chronicles 29:10 -13 (ON SCREEN)
Our disaster relief team that served in Wilmington, NC (Pictured here) we stood in front of a woman’s house that we were getting ready to work on named Annie. Like we would do before serving we would gather to pray. Well they asked her to pray. She preceded to praise God. Recognizing that He is King, ruling and reigning over everything. She recognized like David in our passage that everything that is, is His!
You see that by the use of the word YOURS take a look at verse 11 (On screen)
Imagine the impact if we would just simply take the time at home this reality or even when we pray before we request we recognize who we are talking to.
We must use the gift of praise!
That’s not all take a look at 29:14-17 (ON SCREEN)
There was this deep sense of humility and self-awareness from David that everything He has flows out of the generosity of God.
David said, I was willing to give and I have seen with JOY how willingly your people have given.
What a joy it is to see the generosity of God at work through the hands of His people. One of the guys on our disaster relief trip showed up to serve and brought with him so many resources from his own business that he was giving away to help the work. He did it willingly.
What if as a church community we didn’t respond to disasters, homelessness or other causes that reflect the heart of God? We have the ability because of generosity that flows out of what we have been given by God!
Give Generously To Impact A Generation.
As we have discovered so far, we give Praise to God, we give our possessions from God last but certainly not least we give, Prayer.
Take a look at verse 18 (Screen)
What started out as a quest to stay healthy because of type 2 diabetes has turned into one of the joys of my life. A couple of times a week I go to Rivergate (Picture) in Rockhill to pray along the 6.4-mile path. While out there I praise God, cry out to God, Pray for myself and others. This week I was able to pray for Butler High school. Whether you are outdoors, running, walking, or biking. Whether you are indoors cooking, eating, or relaxing give the gift of prayer.
Sometimes when walking my glasses get foggy so I cannot see. So, I have to take one of these wipes to clear up my lenses. Sometimes the difficulties of life can cause us to lose sight of the goodness of God. That’s when we ask to Holy Spirit clear up our sight.
Give generously to impact a generation.
David prayed that the generosity toward the work of God would continue throughout the generations.
We are going to give that gift right now. Stand and let us pray together this
Thanks Living Prayer as a community at Moss at Zoar.
Thanks Living Prayer up on the screen.
Praise be to you, LORD, Our God and Father,
Everything in heaven and earth is yours.
You are exalted as head over all.
Wealth and honor come from you;
You are the ruler of all things.
In your hands are strength and power
to exalt and give strength to all.
Make us a people where Generosity
shapes our Identity as a Community.
Keep our hearts loyal to you
We invite you to work mightily
As we give willing the gifts of praise,
Possessions, and Prayer, to bless the generations,
In Jesus name, Amen.