New Day Community Church
November 29, 2020
      • Hebrews 10:24NIRV

      • Hebrews 10:24NIRV

      • Hebrews 10:24NIRV

      • Hebrews 10:24NIRV

  • Silent Night (Stille Nacht)
  • Our God
  • 10,000 Reasons (Bless The Lord)
  • God Of Wonders
  • What did it take a pandemic for you to be willing to do?

    As i was preparing for my Thanksgiving Day, I did an evaluation of my gratefulness and gratitude towards others.
    This has been a hard year for me, but perhaps the hardness of the year, opened me up to hear what God has been saying to me.
    My friends I was in a very dark space before the pandemic. My nights were filled with anxieties as I played out arguments, problems, hard ships, that occured all around me. I would wake up in a panic and not be able to go to sleep for hours. It was very hard, very scary, and I felt incredibly stuck, like getting out was impossible.
    Do you feel that way? Corona virus has trapped many of us, but I want to tell you that God hears our prayers.
    I asked you last week to be a Blessing to God. Seek out ways to bless God. I hope you did. I did. I had a wonderful week but it’s because I said yes to Jesus, moved into the fear, and followed in faith completely unknown as to how it would turn out.
    I told you to seek to bless God but often in the midst of blessing God, God will pour a blessing on you which will overwhelm you. It will scare you. You won’t know if you can handle it or you will know for a fact you can’t handle it.
    The Christmas Story is all about that. This familar story can actually be quite unfamilar as I was reminded of yesterday as we were setting up the Christmas light show and the star of Bethlehem was put over the Shepherds Hill. When I pointed out the problem I was told their wasn’t a problem. Do you know the problem? will find out in later weeks.
    Let’s get to real problems and not trivial ones.
    Your seeking a blessing but instead what is before you is scary, your facing something you don’t want to do or not sure you can do, or really know you can’t. Yet you know that’s exactly what God wants you to do.
    Jesus Himself is the Ultimate Blessing and every single person in the Christmas story will pushed to the point of intense fear with the only way to accept their blessing. They must

    Go into the fear with faith.

    The Christmas Story begins long before Mary, well it begins all the way back to Adam & Eve but we are going to pick it up where the Bible begins close to Jesus birth in Luke 1
    One of the aspects that ads to the truth of the story is the date and because dates did not cross against cultures, our dating now begins withe the supposed birth of Jesus even though it is off by a few years, the date of Kings and Emperors is more precise, other Kings and royals would write this stuff down of when other Kings were born so we can compare and get a good time frame. That’s why our story begins with the date of another King.
    Luke 1:5 CSB
    5 In the days of King Herod of Judea, there was a priest of Abijah’s division named Zechariah. His wife was from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth.
    We meet our couple and these people are awesome. They do the right thing, they follow God well, Zechariah is even from the special family picked by God that gets to work in the Temple. There was only one proper way to worship God and Zechariah’s family, all of his people, got to lead All the Jewish people in that worship. This wonderful couple were people you would want to know at that time. They were awesome!
    But there was one dreadful thing about them. They had no kids. Kids meant someone would take care of you when you were old. Kids meant and still means you get to carry on, a part of your genetic code carrys on. Kids were seen as the way to know your blessed by God.

    Our Greatest Shame can be the Beginning of God’s great story

    Yet these two still stayed in God. They didn’t abandon God but accepted that He chose not to bless them. Elizabeth was already too old to get pregnant. Yet they stayed faithful to God.
    Zechariah then got the rarest gift of a lifetime. He was selected at what appeared random but we know was by God to burn the incense before God. See when I said his family led worship in the temple I meant all of his relatives going back well over 1000 years. His family was so huge that this would only happen once in his lifetime. He would be able to bless God by giving this blessed gift from His people before God.
    What an amazing opportunity to worship God! I have to tell you friends

    One of the ways you get to Bless God is by giving Him your worship.

    Worship by Showing Up

    Worship by Singing

    Worship by Thanking Him

    Worship through Art

    You are empowered to worship God, give God worth in your way

    Zechariah worshipped God in a different way, at a different time when proper worship was to occur in the temple
    As what often happens when we attempt to bless God with our worship, God blesses us more.
    Luke 1:11–12 CSB
    11 An angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing to the right of the altar of incense. 12 When Zechariah saw him, he was terrified and overcome with fear.
    Angel of God shows up right in front of His face. To see something so spiritual so awesome.
    I hear people all the time … My Guardian Angel was watching over me or your such an angel. First of ANgELS always spark fear!
    God usually sparks fear in us. Holy Reverence. The unknown.
    Will you go into the fear? Will you go into the unknown knowing that God has said He will be with you.
    Matthew 28:20 CSB
    20 teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
    The Angel tells Zechariah of a blessing!
    Luke 1:12–17 CSB
    12 When Zechariah saw him, he was terrified and overcome with fear. 13 But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zechariah, because your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you will name him John. 14 There will be joy and delight for you, and many will rejoice at his birth. 15 For he will be great in the sight of the Lord and will never drink wine or beer. He will be filled with the Holy Spirit while still in his mother’s womb. 16 He will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God. 17 And he will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of fathers to their children, and the disobedient to the understanding of the righteous, to make ready for the Lord a prepared people.”
    So amazing! Not only will he have a son but He will be vital to all mankind! HE will matter!
    All of us want the best for our children and most of us believe our children are pretty special but here was a man who was told before his child was born by an ANGEL, a messenger of God that His Child would be one of the most important people to ever live!

    What happens in your heart when your told a blessing by God?

    I am usually petrified. My wife knew what was happening with me and joining me in prayer. She told me I was killing myself. She knew that I needed a couple of things. I needed one job I could walk away from and then be a pastor but doing so meant disappointing pastor Harry. But I knew that God was using my wife to tell me something incredibly important. While it sounds nice to call my wife an angel, again Biblically, angels spark fear. I will tell you that you, like my wife, could give a message from God to someone.

    Bless God by speaking truth to others

    Soon after my sister-in-law told me that I needed to get a sleep study because my brother had sleep apnea. I didn’t. At around the same time as we worshipped outside my allergies overwhelmed me so I went to an allergy doctor who told me to get a sleep study,
    But I was afraid because with a sleep study comes a cpap. I hated the idea of a cpap and becoming an alien in a sceince fiction film or the biggest dork in a Romantic Comedy is not what my ego needed. I thought.
    Zachariah’s blessing came with a much worse fear.
    Zachariah was confronted by the fear of attempting to make His wife pregnant again and being let down.
    Trying again, with hope this time is one of the hardest things for people who know failure
    hope of getting pregnant
    hope of passing the test or the class
    hope of working out the relationship
    hope of overcoming the addiction
    Faith begins with hope in God to deliver and that is scary

    Zachariah failed to hope. But God still delivered because God is bigger than us.

    That’s right Zachariah failed. I think its so interesting that we think God is like sorry one mess up, you suck, God moves along.
    No God knew who you were before He was ready to Bless you. God wants to Bless you to show you and all those around you How Great God is!

    Your blessing is about God’s greatness just accept it and go into it with Faith!

    There are consequences to our lack of faith. It might be delay. It might be loss of relationships. I don’t know what it will be but there are consequences to not having faith even though the blessing will come.
    Luke 1:18–19 CSB
    18 “How can I know this?” Zechariah asked the angel. “For I am an old man, and my wife is well along in years.” 19 The angel answered him, “I am Gabriel, who stands in the presence of God, and I was sent to speak to you and tell you this good news.
    I love this … Um, you do know that I am an Angel right?
    You do know that those who follow Jesus and call Him their Lord and Savior are filled by the Holy Spirit! Leading you!
    There are consequences.
    Luke 1:21–25 CSB
    21 Meanwhile, the people were waiting for Zechariah, amazed that he stayed so long in the sanctuary. 22 When he did come out, he could not speak to them. Then they realized that he had seen a vision in the sanctuary. He was making signs to them and remained speechless. 23 When the days of his ministry were completed, he went back home. 24 After these days his wife Elizabeth conceived and kept herself in seclusion for five months. She said, 25 “The Lord has done this for me. He has looked with favor in these days to take away my disgrace among the people.”
    Sometimes our shame can still be God’s greatest blessing.
    Some of you have amazing stories of what God has done in your life but the stories come withe embarrassing details of immorality, failure, failure of faith, shame. I tell you today that I have felt that shame but don’t be afraid of our embarrassment but share out of gratitude of what God has done!
    I was stuck in a desire of imaging escape my life by death rather than face my fears of failing relationships.
    Pastor Harry was blessed in his acceptance of my resignation. The school has been blessed beyond measure as I changed jobs. I walked into a weird but perfect situation for me. Who knew that my first two school observations would be in something called distance learning?
    Oh the cpap does suck, and I’ll be working with my doctor to make it better but ...
    It appears 95% of my anxieties, fears, etc. were because I couldn’t breathe at night. I would wake up in utter terror about my real life problems because my brain was waking me up to get me breathing again!
    My anxieties are mostly gone.
    But I do wonder how many bad decisions did I make because I was afraid to seize the blessing that was unknown?
    Zechariah went home and couldn’t talk, perhaps this is why Elizabeth was willing to conceive a child. He finally shut up. Just kidding.
    Think about this though, Zechariah even in Silence could have not taken the step he needed to take to see the blessing God promised. For him the step would likely be something he had done often, even enjoyable but at the end their would be a waiting and that fear.

    Take the next step toward your blessing.

    Go to rehab
    Go to the counselor
    Apply for the job
    Take the class
    Tell your friend about your faith in Jesus Christ
    Zechariah took the step. Elizabeth became pregnant.
    Zechariah had a son. He named him John. And as he wrote down the baby’s name for his village to see he regained his voice and sang in worship to God.
    Luke 1:68 CSB
    68 Blessed is the Lord, the God of Israel, because he has visited and provided redemption for his people.
    There is redemption, Jesus paid the price for your sins. He orchestrated you to remember that today. Will you follow Him into the hard thing and seek to Bless God by following in real faith.
      • Luke 1:5NIRV

      • Luke 1:11–12NIRV

      • Matthew 28:20NIRV

      • Luke 1:12–17NIRV

      • Luke 1:18–19NIRV

      • Luke 1:21–25NIRV

      • Luke 1:68NIRV

  • way maker
      • 1 John 3.16NRSV

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