Audio from Senior Pastor Vaughn Drawdy on Sunday morning December 30th, 2018.
This time of the year many are reflecting over the past year. The good, the bad, the ugly. Many started 2018 off with New Year's resolutions. Did you? How'd you do?
This coming year, many will make New Years resolutions again. Here are the most popular resolutions (survey of 2000 people from Google stats):
>Diet or eat healthier (71%)
>Exercise more (65%)
>Lose weight (54%)
>Save more and spend less ( 32%)
>Learn a new skill or hobby (26%)
>Quit smoking (21%)
>Read more (17%)
>Find another job (16%)
One thing that I didn’t see on the survey that I think many of us want to do: “a deeper relationship with God.”
Depend on Him more
To go to church more
To be more dedicated in their faith
To sin less
Tithe more (or tithe some some)
The amazing thing is, having a stronger faith, a maturing faith, is what God wants’s us to have as well.
Paul opened most of His letters with this thought.
(“Grace and peace be with you…)
He is saying, “May the power of God, in all strength - for every circumstance and moment in life, empower you, encourage you and bring you His presence in such a way that you know and walk in His blessing and in His peace.
So what is stopping you from having a more mature, stronger walk with God? In order to grow something in your garden, you must plant seeds. >God's Word empowered - planted in our hearts
>Watered, Empowered by His Spirit (grace)
>Will grow us, and produce stronger faith, and reveal His love to those around us.
Here's a great seed of truth for us today:
Psalm 34:1-22 NIV
1 I will extol the Lord at all times;his praise will always be on my lips. 2 I will glory in the Lord;let the afflicted hear and rejoice. 3 Glorify the Lord with me;let us exalt his name together. 4 I sought the Lord, and he answered me;he delivered me from all my fears. 5 Those who look to him are radiant;their faces are never covered with shame. 6 This poor man called, and the Lord heard him;he saved him out of all his troubles. 7 The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him,and he delivers them. 8 Taste and see that the Lord is good;blessed is the one who takes refuge in him. 9 Fear the Lord, you his holy people,for those who fear him lack nothing. 10 The lions may grow weak and hungry,but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing. 11 Come, my children, listen to me;I will teach you the fear of the Lord. 12 Whoever of you loves lifeand desires to see many good days, 13 keep your tongue from eviland your lips from telling lies. 14 Turn from evil and do good;seek peace and pursue it. 15 The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous,and his ears are attentive to their cry; 16 but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil,to blot out their name from the earth. 17 The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them;he delivers them from all their troubles. 18 The Lord is close to the brokenheartedand saves those who are crushed in spirit. 19 The righteous person may have many troubles,but the Lord delivers him from them all; 20 he protects all his bones,not one of them will be broken. 21 Evil will slay the wicked;the foes of the righteous will be condemned. 22 The Lord will rescue his servants;no one who takes refuge in him will be condemned.
As 2019 approaches...
May we, as God’s people, purpose in our herts to praise Him at all times. Look for the moments. There will be many. Some good, some bad.
In the good times, speak of His provision.
In the bad, the hard times, speak of your trust in Him.
Take someone with you on this faith journey.
In Exodus 15:20 we see that Miriam brought here tamborine for the journey that laid ahead. Why? She knew her God. She knew there would be moments to come where she was going to praise Him. Prepare now... pack your praise for the journey ahead...
John 3:16-17 NIV
16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.