Today I made a promise to God that if I had a day off I would post my first message of 2018. So Here it is.
For years I have stood on the sidelines of life waiting for clarity. There are so many things I don’t know. Why do some people pray to God and immediately become free from addictions while others struggle their whole life through? Truth be told we all have something that we would like gone that still is there.
In 2 Corinthians 12 Paul talks about the fact that despite his great experiences and all the exciting revelations he had experienced he still had a thorn, a messenger of Satan that afflicted him. And although he had prayed three times for it to be removed the answer he received is that God’s grace is enough for him and that God’s power is made perfect in weakness.
The title of our thought for today is “Just do it anyway.” “Just do it anyway.”
I’ve been reflecting on an amazing woman, my mother. Although both my parents made a great impact on my life, my father passed away when I was in my early twenties. My mother, now 86, is an incredible overcomer. To think that she had a stroke in 1990 but almost 30 years later is out performing so many half her age.
I’ve been studying her because quite frankly I need some of what she has. When I don’t feel well I usually shut down. I know that my body needs rest to heal and when I really don’t feel well I go into hibernation mode. I haven’t felt well for 6 weeks. But now I’m coming out and have energy and motivation. But she isn’t like me.
She finds strength to do what others need even when she is incapacitated. It seems that almost every day my mom in a subtle way coaches me on her success. She says that when she gets up she knows that there are things that won’t happen unless she does them. So she thinks of and studies about things that could make her feel better and she tries them all….but her key is that she doesn’t stop doing what needs to be done.
Maybe you, like I, have shut down in life. Your marriage imploded so you secluded yourself so as not to have to answer curious questions. Your awesome business venture didn’t make it off the ground and so you’re too embarrassed to dream again or to depressed to even try and start another one…or to reinvent your first one making it better and better. Perhaps you are obese and know you don’t like who you see in the mirror and figure no one else does either and so you retreat into seclusion and binge watching Netflix. Perhaps we can learn something from a parable Jesus taught.
There were some servants who were given talents. Two of them in faith took action to increase what they had been given. The other hid what they had in fear. As you may recall when the master returned those who acted in faith doubled what they had. But the one who acted in fear had taken away from them that which had been given to them.
Here is our lesson from the parable today.
1. Life isn’t perfect
The great women and men of the bible and history were all flawed. You and I are flawed. Stop focusing on the fact that you aren’t perfect as a reason not to take action. Those who follow Christ have accepted His righteousness. His perfection is what you need. Stop waiting for perfection and JUST DO IT ANYWAY!
2. Faith takes action and grows
When someone comes to study voice with me they may want to be the next Whitney Houston or Pavarotti in 3 weeks but it’s not happening! It takes time. The great athletes commit to routines that cultivate their gifts and propel them to greatness. Faith believes not just that there is greatness in you but that God really did give you what you have and that he is willing and able to bless the action you take to yield growth and develop greatness. So JUST DO IT ANYWAY!
3. Fear hides and diminishes
When I haven’t played the piano or sung in a while I lose a bit of my skill. My muscles aren’t quite as strong or flexible as they were when they were in training. If you have been sitting on the sidelines of life feeling sorry for all the things life has brought your way, perhaps discouraged because you thought you’d have more or be further along the path towards your dreams, listen for I have good news for you. You only have to have the courage and faith for one step. That’s it. With one step things start to change. With only one step you start to feel progress. With only one step your self esteem starts to grow a little bit. With only one step depression starts to evaporate. With only one step things will get better.
I have learned in life that we grow together. There are insights you have that will transform my life. There are miracles that will take place when two or three are gathered in His name. God is pleased when his children love one another. And so He has made it such that we have exponential blessings by adding value to each other’s life. How do I know? I don’t think you need a proof text for this one.
If you help me and I help you then more helping is happening than if only one of us helps or if neither of us helps. If my friend helps you and me and we help my friend then even more helping is occuring. And we are happier because we feel loved and a satisfaction from meeting the needs of others.
That’s why Satan has spent so much time first destroying the family unit and then transforming church from a participation experience to one of performance and observation. We are so wrapped up in our personal devices that we don’t look each other in the eye much anymore. We don’t have conversations like we used to. We are so addicted to the dopamine hits from advancing to the next level of our video games on Facebook or the Xbox that we find it difficult to enjoy praying or reading God’s word.
So I encourage you as I encourage myself to take a new approach. Do not hide from the world by immersing myself in entertainment to mask my pain and disappointment but rather accept that life is not perfect but God is still able to get the glory from my gifts so I’ll JUST DO IT ANYWAY. I may not have all the answers but I’ll JUST DO IT ANYWAY. I may feel unworthy but I’ll JUST DO IT ANYWAY.
And the result will be more love and more glory to our Heavenly Father.
I’m Minister David Griffiths
I Love you, God loves you more, so Just Do It Anyway!