Ron Dozier, who has been on our staff for 12 years now and recently became the Moss Campus Pastor, delivered the second sermon in The Trust Factor series.
Contrasting Frank Sinatra with Proverbs 3:5-6, Ron’s message landed here: My Way Destroys. His Way Delivers.
Here it is:
There I stood at the head of the casket surrounded by the family and friends of a deceased member of a former church back in the city of Brotherly Love, Philadelphia, PA. I had just finished praying then as customary turned it over to the funeral director who was supposed to give final remarks. To my surprise he began to sing this song by Frank Sinatra. (picture of Frank Sinatra) “I did it my Wayyyyy,” What seemed like a fitting song well suited for the person really didn’t sit well with me.
Really, I reasoned, a Life Story summarized by doing it, MY WAY! Now don’t get me wrong for many years my behavior was characterized by my way. My way focused on me and making decisions based on my feelings. I often didn’t think of the consequences of my way until I had to face them. My perspective was very short sighted. My attitude was:
Forget about the rules …Do it My Way
Forget about how it impacts others…Do it My Way
Who knows what’s best for me? Well Me!
The reason why my way resonates with some and is celebrated by others is because it has been growing for a long time.
Children grow up wanting their way…
Teenagers wanting to exercise their voice because they have something to say, telling Mom & Dad, listen to My Way. Adults will tell you it’s my life, So I will do it my way!
I remember telling my son recently until you turn 18 you will do things my way.
Indirectly saying once you get 18 you can do it your way.
Have you ever told someone, “It’s my way or the HIGHWAY.”
Thank God there is a better way, THE BEST WAY!!! That way involves following the wisdom of Proverbs 3:5-6 which is what our series, “The Trust Factor,” is all about. Let’s read it together.
There it IS! Trust in the Lord, that is the best way. Trust him completely, with all your heart. Trust him confidently, do not lean to your own understanding. Put your weight on his understanding, His Way, not your way. Someone may ask, How can I know I am doing that? In all thy ways acknowledge him. Trust involves obedience to him in every area of life. On the surface that seems pretty straightforward. Trusting the Lord involves embracing what the bible calls “wisdom.” Wisdom involves living the right way. Wisdom is a lifestyle that reflects God’s Way. Whether you are wise or foolish is reflected in how you respond to what God says. Proverbs is wisdom literature. A key to trusting the Lord is Fearing the Lord, Proverbs 1:7.
“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.”
To fear the Lord is to take God seriously, respond to him reverently, realize He is God and I am not. To embrace his way above any other way.
My way puts the focus on me, His way puts my focus on him. Trusting the Lord starts with a decision that will impact future decisions. I decided I want to eat healthy, so every time I eat that decision impacts what I put in my mouth. In other words my present decisions align with a decision I have already made. That decision is His way.
Yet there are some things that get in the way of that decision you made to trust the Lord. It is an attempt to take our focus off of God and place it back on ourselves. One such thing is distractions. That is exactly why Proverbs is filled with Warnings. Proverbs encourages you to chose God’s way. It’s a battle that started in the very beginning, take a look at the screen. (Video clip Bible Project)
Wisdom says do not stray away from the path because what seems easy. Easy money, Gaining money at the expense of hurting people. Easy sex, putting your pleasure above someone else’s purity. Proverbs provides good instruction.
It’s like holding up a sign “Do not enter,” What If we could have a sign that would permanently warn our children when they are tempted, Don’t Do It! Not God’s way.
Well, God’s word does even better. It warns us and invites us to store his word into our hearts.
Our daughter Cassidi (PICTURE OF CASSIDI) a sophomore in college faces challenges and distractions living out her decision to trust the Lord. She is doing well not just because of our warnings but because she has been welcoming God’s word into her heart.
Another thing that tries to get in the way is difficulty. Trusting in the Lord will not exempt us from difficulty, life challenges. Life’s interruptions.
I wear this bracelet given to me by my sister in the lord RC, Rhonda Cook says Life’s interruptions. Although she Trusts God she is dealing with cancer. It reminds me to lift her up in prayer. She sees God’s strength in the midst of her weakness. As her strength allows she seeks to serve the Lord. A man in our church who suffers from chronic pain serves faithfully praying for others. He recently shared with me that even though his pain creates an obstacle He sees it as an opportunity to draw on God’s strength and experience his peace. There are so many people right now who trust in the Lord yet are facing life’s challenges. Family challenges, Financial challenges, Physical challenges.
Yet they are trusting the Lord in the midst of what they are going through.
I want you to know that God sees you, God cares for you. Keep trusting in God. Your decision to trust the Lord sets your life in a direction that leads to discovery. There is a very good reason why I chose His Way over My way
Here’s what I want you to know! My way destroys, His way delivers
When I was younger I thought I was a ladies man leaving a trail of broken hearts one being my own. Now I have been married for 21 years to one woman my beautiful wife Sanya. I just love what God is doing in our relationship. I had to abandon my way because my way destroys his way delivers.
Obedience leads to opportunity just ask Abraham.
Abraham would say, Keep trusting God. God called him to go to a place where he would later receive as his inheritance, he obeyed and went even though he didn’t know where he was going. You can trust God in times of uncertainty. Abraham would say, Keep trusting God even when you can’t figure out how he is going to work it out. Listen to how the author of Hebrews puts it in Hebrews 11:17 -19
“By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had embraced the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, even though God had said to him, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.” Abraham reasoned that God could even raise the dead, and so in a manner of speaking he did receive Isaac back from death.”
Abraham named that place Jehovah-jireh, God will provide. Abraham reasoned God can raise the dead. The Lord told Abraham don’t kill your son just look up and see the sacrifice that I have provided. Keep trusting, because the one you are trusting in has already sacrificed His only son. He did that so that nothing would separate you from his LOVE.
Look beyond your circumstances and see the sacrifice God has already provided. You can have confidence in His commitment to you.
Instead of having fear of what my circumstances look like, I need to have faith in the character of God. God is faithful, God is dependable. He can provide! So trust in the Lord with all your heart lean not to your own understanding in all your ways acknowledge him and he shall direct your path. My dependency is in his sufficiency because my way destroys but His way delivers. Circumstances causing you to fear? Remember there is no fear in love perfect love casts out all fear. His way delivers.
Circumstances causing you anxiety? Be anxious for nothing, in everything by prayer ………
Choose to follow the words of Solomon, Trust in the Lord, not the words of Sinatra, “I did it my way”
My Way destroys His Way delivers, AMEN.