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Beginning at the End of Ourselves The Importance of Relying on God’s Power.

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Presentation on theme: "Beginning at the End of Ourselves The Importance of Relying on God’s Power."— Presentation transcript:

1 Beginning at the End of Ourselves The Importance of Relying on God’s Power

2 The challenge for us living in American culture is to live in such a way that we are radically dependent on and desperate for the power that only God can provide.

3 Subtle Danger The American Dream Prizes what people can accomplish when they believe in themselves and trust in themselves. Goal: Make much of ourselves vs. The Gospel of Jesus Christ The gospel beckons us to die to ourselves and believe in God and trust in his power. Goal: Make much of God.

4 Exalting Our Inability In direct contradiction to the American dream, God actually delights in exalting our inability. Why did God design the battle plan for taking the first city (Jericho) in the Promised Land? (Joshua 5-6) He was divinely orchestrating the events of his people so that in the end only he could get the glory for what would happen.

5 Exalting Our Inability This is how God works…. He puts his people in positions where they are desperate for His power, and then he shows his provision in ways that displayed his greatness.

6 Dependent on Ourselves or Desperate for His Spirit? Clearly, it doesn’t require the power of God to draw a crowd in our culture. A few key elements that we can manufacture will suffice.

7 Dependent on Ourselves or Desperate for His Spirit? ● First, we need a good performance. ● Second, we gather all our resources to build a multi-million dollar facility to house the performance. ● Finally, once the crowds get there, we need to have something to keep them coming back. Then we start programs and rely on professionals to handle the ministries.

8 Dependent on Ourselves or Desperate for His Spirit? What is strangely lacking in the picture of performances, personalities, programs and professionals is desperation for the power of God. God’s power is at best an add-on to our strategies.

9 The Scene of the Church in Acts The church I long to be apart of today… ▪ A scene where we refuse to operate in a mind-set dominated by an American dream that depends on what we can achieve in our own abilities. ▪ A scene where we no longer settle for what we can do in our own power. ▪ A scene where the church radically trusts in God’s great power to provide unlikely people with unlimited, unforeseen, uninhibited resources to make his name known as great.

10 Ordinary Christians, Extraordinary God What if God in all his grace is radically committed to showing himself strong on behalf of a people who express their need for him so their lives might make much of him? Example: George Muller God delights in using ordinary Christians who come to the end of themselves and choose to trust in his extraordinary provision. He stands ready to allocate his power to all who are radically dependent on him and radically devoted to making much of him.

11 ON OUR KNEES It is the way of Christ. Instead of asserting ourselves, we crucify ourselves. Instead of imagining all of the things we can accomplish, we ask God to do what only he can accomplish. Yes, we work, we plan, we organize, and we create, but we do it all while we fast, while we pray, and while we constantly confess our need for the provision of God. Instead of dependence on ourselves, we express radical desperation for the power of his Spirit, and we trust that Jesus stands ready to give us everything we ask for so that he might make much of our Father in the world.

12 THINK ABOUT IT Would you say that your life is marked right now by desperation for the Spirit of God? Would you say that the church that you are a part of is characterized by this sense of desperation? We will then discover that we were created for a purpose much greater than ourselves, the kind of purpose that can only be accomplished in the power of his Spirit.

13 My Radical Experiment I agree with the Radical claim that I can find satisfaction and real service to God only in abandonment to Jesus. So I hereby commit to one year experiment of radical living according to the gospel ….. And making myself open to permanent changes God wants to perform in my life as a result of this experiment. Over the next year I will……

14 My Radical Experiment I will pray for the entire world. I will read through the entire Word. I will sacrifice my money for a specific purpose. I will spend time in another context. I will commit my life to multiplying community.

15 Beginning at the End of Ourselves The Importance of Relying on God’s Power

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