Words sacrifice ROGER VALCI | JIMI MERRELL
Just so you know up front...
Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Will he not first sit down and estimate the cost to see if he has enough money to complete it? For if he lays the foundation and is not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule him, saying, â€˜This fellow began to build and was not able to finish.â€™
Or suppose a king is about to go to war against another king. Will he not first sit down and consider whether he is able with ten thousand men to oppose the one coming against him with twenty thousand? If he is not able, he will send a delegation while the other is still a long way off and will ask for terms of peace.
In the same way, any of you who do not give up everything he has cannot be my disciple. [the cost of discipleship according to jesus | Luke 14:28-33]
Don’t read this tract if you are looking for an easy life… You won’t get one if you follow what’s inside. Don’t read this tract if you are attempting to secure your place in Heaven. That promise has lured millions to a perturbed view of faith. Don’t read this tract if you aren’t serious about God. Its words and message will matter little to your life. Don’t read this tract if you are doing someone a favor. Placating people is a game of politeness; a trite gesture that means nothing. Don’t read this tract if you are looking to find happiness. Happiness is a prize of this world that repeatedly over-promises and under-delivers. Don’t read this tract, say a prayer, and not join Christ’s church. That’s an insult to God. Read this tract ONLY if you are ready to… Face your own foils and inner demons; release your right to get even for the injustice that has happened to you; surrender your control to chart the course of your life; walk away from the relationships that are destroying you; ask the hard questions you have been avoiding… If you not willing to do these things, put down this tract and go on with life.You don’t need it and we don’t want to waste your time.
Otherwise, turn the page and get ready to be AMAZED!!!
1 John 4:9-10
This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
â€œGod has paid us the intolerable compliment of loving us, in the deepest, most tragic, most inexorable sense.â€? â€“C. S. Lewis
God loves you! Sounds trite, perhaps, but I assure you, it’s not. Love is such an overused word. We love our pizza, we love our sports, we love our coffee, and we love our favorite pair of sweats. That’s not the kind of love we are talking about here. Love is also a misused word. Some people say, “I love you” to get something from us. Regrettably, some of us give it to them. And love is an underused word. For some of us, we’ve never – and I mean never – heard anyone say these three powerful words to us. We are still wondering if anyone ever will...
But here is the Truth: God loves you!
For Him, love is not a throw-away word or a filler. He is not trying to coerce or manipulate us with love to get something in return. In fact, He causes one to blush when He shares His affection, excitement, and, in some ways, romance, about how He feels about you. He can’t wait to see you wake up in the morning. He is crazy about your quirky personality. He enjoys what you bring to this world. Yes, God loves you! That’s very good news indeed.
Unfortunately, there is also bad news to share…
For from within, out of men’s hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. All these evils come from inside and make a man “unclean.”
in me, my sin nature,
“If you reduce sin to its simplest form, at its root, you will find selfishness.” –Jimi Merrell
separates me from God
And that bad news falls on us. Selfishness. I’m sure there are situations in your life that you look back upon and wish you could have a “do-over” – a second chance to handle things differently. See, our natural desire is to do what is right by us, not taking into account the needs or feelings of others. Selfishness Separates. Yet when we ascribe to this rule of life, we find that our own “self-promoting” choices separate us from our most valued relationships – those that we love and God Himself. Sadly, some of these relationships are yet to be restored. Separation Brings Regret. Missed opportunities. Broken relationships. Wrong priorities. And the ultimate regret: life without God, in this world and the next.
This separation torments Something had to change.
JESUS died so we could be reconciled to
“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. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.”
“Before we can begin to see the cross as something done for us, we have to see it as something done by us.” –John R. W. Stott
God sent Jesus to this earth to be a bridge. Our bridge. A bridge that would span the chasm of our selfishness and regret, back into the loving arms of the One who created us. Jesus did not commit suicide, nor was He a martyr. Jesus became our sacrifice. He could have said, “No,” but He didn’t. He didn’t fight against the sacred assignment that was given to Him. He understood the eternal ramifications of what was taking place, and what that would mean for us. With each passing moment that Jesus’ arms were outstretched on the Cross, His thoughts were fixed on you and me. His perfect life was blemished with every sin that we would ever commit – the perfect as a sacrifice for the imperfect.
The bridge is in place, has been paid.
“Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on him.”
opportunity to mankind
accept or reject Jesus’ sacrifice “Now just think a moment and answer the question, what shall I do with Jesus who is called Christ?” –D. L. Moody
Are you ready to make a choice? Will you accept God’s gift in Jesus Christ or will you continue to live life for yourself? Will you turn away from your own pattern of living and step into God’s design for your life? Will you stop making selfish decisions that separate you from God and others? Will you start living your spiritual journey today? If so, then you need to make two choices: REPENT and BELIEVE. REPENTANCE is a foreign word to many of us. It simply means “turning.” You must first take responsibiity for your own errors and the hurt you have caused God and others.You then make amends, and walk a new road. Next, you simply BELIEVE that what Jesus did on the Cross was sufficient to cover all your selfish motives and deeds. That’s it.
You’ve crossed the bridge.
purpose Through God, we have
“For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
“God has created me to do him
some definite service; he has committed some work to me which he has not committed to another. I have my mission ...” –John Henry Newman
God is concerned about Earth, not Heaven. Perhaps the greatest misunderstanding of the Christian faith is the over-emphasis on Heaven and under-emphasis of Earth. Most of the Bible is written not to get people to Heaven, but how to live on Earth. Heaven, from what we can tell, is doing fine. Earth, on the other hand, is in chaos. Deceit. Betrayal. Prejudice. Rage. Slander. Greed. They envelop our world and subdue its subjects. That’s where your purpose comes in. God never removes us from the pangs of this world, but He does call us to bring His name, His kingdom and His will to this ailing planet. He is inviting you to join with Him in bringing comfort, hope, healing and wholeness to the Earth. The Early Church went from as few as 25,000 Christians in AD 100 to 20 million Christians in AD 300. How did they do this? The Bible gives us two indicators. First, they got water baptized. Baptism tells the world to whom you belong and to what you are dedicating your life. It is a ceremony of solidarity to God’s work and His people, the Church. Second, they received the empowerment of the Holy Spirit. The mission of Earth is impossible without God’s power. The Holy Spirit gives us the conviction and courage to bring God’s hope and healing to a hurting world.
You’ll never find meaningful purpose in this life until your plan, your mission, and your calling aligns with God’s transforming work for this world.
Ready to begin your faith journey?
LOVE | God, I am humbled and overwhelmed at Your love toward me. I may not understand the depth of Your love for me or why You would choose to love me in the first place, but I thank You and I accept it.
EVIL | I understand my best efforts and selfish intentions fall short of Heaven. I regret how I have separated myself from You and those I love. SACRIFICE | I believe that Jesus came to this Earth to be my bridge back to You â€“ a perfect sacrifice that overrides my selfishness and regret. He gave up His life so that I might be spared. CHOICE | I ask that You shape me and form me into the person that You created me to be. I choose to turn from my old path and desires to the road You always planned for me. In the same way that You offered Your life for me, I offer my life to You. PURPOSE | I plan to live out the course and mission You have before me. As I embark on this journey, I understand that this will not be easy. Let the world know that today I die to myself, and am spiritually reborn as a child of God.
“I know what I’m doing [with your life]. I have it all planned out.” Plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for. When you call on Me, when you come and pray to Me, I’ll listen. When you come looking for Me, you’ll find Me. Yes, when you get serious about finding Me and want it more than anything else, I’ll make sure you won’t be disappointed. I’ll turn things around for you. [GOD SPEAKING TO HIS PEOPLE | Jeremiah 29:11-14]
7500 Inspiration Drive | Dublin, CA 94568 | www.ComeDiscoverVCC.org
Copyright 2015 | Valley Christian Center | All rights reserved.
A WORD OF ENCOURAGEMENT: