Belize Day 4 –
Nor sworn deceitfully. 5 He shall receive blessing from the Lord, And righteousness from the God of his salvation. 6 This is Jacob, the generation of those who seek Him, Who seek Your face.
This is the third week is the Simple Discipleship series. Here are the first two messages in this series.
Here is the topic of study for next week:
- Prayer and Fasting
- The Scriptures for study are: Daniel 10:1-14, Isaiah 58, Matthew 6:5-21, Habakkuk 2:1-4, Mark 9:14-29, and 1 Timothy 2:1-4.
Worship and Sacrifice
- My notes can be found here: Simple Discipleship Week 3
- Here is the Audio Teaching from Feb 17, 2016: http://lwcburleson.sermon.net/main/main/20609931
As we begin learning about Worship and Sacrifice, we must first ask ourselves,
What is Worship?
What is Sacrifice?
If we do not have a proper understanding of these things, then as we discuss them, we will never come to a true understanding. My prayer is that as we investigate the scriptures, that we will understand even more the meaning of these and how we can apply them to our lives.
Worship – Honoring and lifting high another as higher than yourself out of a heart of love in response to God’s word, act, or nature.
Sacrifice – Giving up completely something that is greatly important to you for the benefit of another because you love them.
Here, I am talking specifically of the worshiping God, but we worship and lift high so many things that are undeserving. Food, sleep, money, fashion, entertainment, sports, people, can all be worshiped in spite of not being worth it. In this one statement, you may be feeling judged and your toes may feel stepped on, but this is the reality of the matter in my life as well as the lives of so many others.
We have a struggle in the morning when our alarms go off whether we will rise and spend time with the Lord worshiping Him or worship the god of sleep that is so seductive especially when it comes time to make the decision. I could go on and on about each one of these, but every time we choose these things over obedience to God and love for Him, we are worshiping them and lifting them high as the important things in our lives.
In 2 Chronicles 21, we come to learn that we worship God when we accept His word and are obedient without doubting or questioning what He says. Jehosophat had no direct command of God to put His worshipers on the front lines. They did it out of an act of obedience and thus worshiped God by being obedient and trusting in the word of God.
In Genesis 22, Abraham is called to sacrifice his son that God had just revealed was the son of promise. Abraham trusted God in such a way that as they went to the mountain in Vs. 5 Abraham says we go to worship. Abraham’s heart of sacrifice is a true act of worship to God. He was willing to give whatever God asked in obedience out of his great love for Him.
In John 4,
What Jesus mean to worship God in Spirit and truth?
- God wants a constant communion with you in the day to day. He does not want you to worship Him in a church or at your house only, but in the Spirit everywhere you go in every situation that you are in.
- God wants you to be honest with Him. You cannot fool God. He sees the thoughts and intentions of your heart. If you are giving Him something small and seemingly mediocre out of a good heart, it is greater worship than giving the very most you have out of a wrong heart. (1 Cor 13:3)
In Malachi 1, God desires our very best. If we bring God half-hearted worship out of duty, these things are not pure and holy and actually dishonor and disrespect God. He would rather no one worship than to have duty-filled worship out of grudging hearts. He wants pure and holy worship that is a true witness to who He is. This only comes when we are giving God our best out of a willing and loving heart.
In 2 Samuel 24, David reveals that God is blessed by our sacrifice more than he is blessed by our excess. We see this concept over and over throughout the Bible that when we give God something valuable to us, that is true worship. Those giving because they have extra does not impress God. Jesus states this in a different way when talking of the widow in Mark 12:41-44. God desires our pure and holy sacrifice so He can bless us with better than our very best!!!
Finally, in Luke 7, a “sinner” probably a prostitute comes in to the middle of the pastors and elders of their day. She humbles herself completely to the judgmental and critical thoughts and stares and worships Jesus. This “sinner” sacrificed more and gave more in worship than anyone else around. Because of her sacrifice and true heart of worship, her sins are forgiven, and she is saved. She was forgiven much and so loved much. The fact that she loved much caused her to sacrifice her most valuable possession and her pride as an act of worship to Jesus.
Does you love cause you to sacrifice your pride and valuables in worship to the Lord?
Nothing I have spoken is out of judgment or condemnation, but Holy Spirit has even convicted me in studying these things. Our love for God will always lead us to a true worship which is displayed in what we are willing to sacrifice for our True Love.
Ask Holy Spirit these questions and be obedient in what He is speaking:
Are you giving your very best to God? This is true worship.
What is God calling you to sacrifice to love Him and worship Him in a deeper way?
May you be blessed with knowing more of the Love of God than ever before, and may you receive the fullness of the blessing that comes through true worship and sacrifice.
Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!
It has been a very challenging season for us over the past few months. First of all, we would like to apologize for not being more up to date on posting as well as sending out monthly newsletters since the one we sent out in September. The day that Katie began to work on the newsletter for October, our computer that contains just about everything we do for ministry stopped working mysteriously. We have had to wait too long for the means to get it fixed and returned to us in a usable form. But praise the Lord, we are now up and running again!!! 🙂
Coming back to “normal” non-missionary life has been difficult in many ways. As we were traveling, we were standing on the word of the Lord to go, and we obeyed that word to the best of our ability. Now that we are back, it has been hard to understand what God has for us here and what He is saying next for work and ministry.
Although it has been a challenging time, we have been privileged to be able to carry on ministering in many different ways. We are privileged to be a part of leadership in Encounter God’s Presence (EGP). Formerly, this was an annual youth camp and leadership retreat, but now it has been developing into weekly meetings and numerous youth rallies across our network of churches. Katie has been involved in the organization and administration of things as well as being able to use her prophetic gifting to give words at several events. Recently, we traveled with an EGP team to Hobbs, New Mexico to put on a rally for the youth. Over a hundred youth came together and worshiped, prayed, and sought the Lord together. During this time, many were ministered to, and Katie even got to pray and watch as a young girl’s leg grew out. This along with her prophetic words touched the lives of many youth there.
This church invited the team to lead worship the next morning so that the entire congregation could be a part of what God was doing. We went early to pray and prepare our hearts to be filled with His presence and then give out what we had received. God had been speaking to me during this weekend a word that I was able to share with the worship team before they were able to minister to the congregation. During the service that followed, the power of God was displayed throughout the church and the pastor gave up his message to allow the Holy Spirit to minister as the worship continued to usher in the Kingdom of God!!!
The word that God had been speaking to me was a simple phrase, “A Moment in Time Changes Everything!!!” As I meditated on this word, God began to reveal more. We live our lives from moment to moment never really knowing what will come next and not being able to change what has been done in the past. Each moment, we are given the opportunity to be obedient to the Lord and the Truth that we know. Each moment in time changes what will come next for better of for worse. As we are faithful to the Lord and His word to us, our moment in time will come into contact with another person’s moment in time and they will be changed by the Presence of the Lord we carry with us. These life changing moments may not seem different than any other moment, because it is not even us doing anything but being obedient to the Lord. This obedience to Him allows Holy Spirit to flow supernaturally through us to whomever we come into contact with.
In Acts 9:10, we come upon “a certain disciple at Damascus named Ananias”. He appears to be no special person, not a pastor or leader in a church. He was a certain disciple like you and I are supposed to be. He was spending time listening to the Lord and allowing his spirit to be filled by the presence of God. When he got a word to go and pray for a man named Saul, he did not even really want to. He had heard of all the evil horrendous things that Saul had done in the name of God, and did not want him to be healed. This would be a bit like God telling you to go and pray for a well known member of ISIS. Nevertheless, because of his relationship with the Lord he was obedient. Saul was miraculously healed and chose to follow the Lord. Ananias, a relative nobody, had a moment in time that God’s power and presence was able to be infused into Saul’s life, and this changed everything!!! Saul became Paul and later became a traveling missionary and church planter, was appointed as an apostle, brought the word of God to the Gentiles, and wrote most of the letters that still influence us to this day. Ananias gained a mighty eternal inheritance of all of these things because of a simple act of obedience that he did not even really want to do. His moment in time still influences us today and changed all of eternity!!!
We can see all kinds of these life-changing moments throughout the Bible and even to modern day history. At the time, they do not even seem to be that important, but because God was able to infuse Himself into the obedience of His people, miraculous things took place and a supernatural legacy was brought about. Think about Abraham who left everything behind to follow the Lord, and his willingness to give up his most precious son Isaac, we are his inheritance. Moses gave up the pleasures of the palace and the solitude of the wilderness to speak the words of truth to Pharaoh, and he became the leader of God’s chosen people. After much resistance, Jonah spoke a word of destruction to Nineveh that saved the entire city. The Bible is made up of simple individuals like you and I (Elijah was a man with a nature like ours… James 5:17) who chose to follow and obey the Lord and this changed history!!!
This is who you are!!! This is your inheritance!!! This is your destiny!!! God calls you as His own to walk in faithful obedience to Him. As you walk out the simple mundane acts of obedience, it allows God to inject His Spirit into the situation so that the miraculous can occur. At the time, you may not see, realize, or feel anything special.
One “little” word or one “small” act of obedience will change the world when God is the one leading and directing!!!
A tiny word can change, save, or set a life free when spoken out of Obedience and Truth!!!
A simple act can affect a person, a nation, or all of eternity if we are walking with the Spirit!!!
One moment in time changes everything!!!
Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!
God is continuing to use us in different ways while here in Texas. It may not be how we would have thought, but He is showing us even more how to praise Him in seasons of waiting. As well as how to be faithful in not just doing the good works that benefit ourselves, but also stepping out into the Greater Works that Jesus talks about in John 14:12. May you be blessed in reading about our faith journey with the Lord and encouraged to step into the Greater Works that marked Jesus and the Apostles!!! 🙂
Jeremiah and Katie