Please remember that sermon notes are meant to act as a guide and may not be exactly what was preached.
We make decisions all the time – to get out of debt, lose weight, read our bibles, get more involved in ministry, adjust a wrong attitude. We promise ourselves that we are going to look or act differently, but we don’t follow through. We’re stuck sitting at a place we arrived at a long time ago.
Busy, overstressed on what to do next, we hesitate, fumble about, and make very little progress. We might scoot closer to going one way or the other, but we don’t take the next step, we don’t commit! Solomon, said to be the wisest man who ever lived, had this to say about our time in this world…
There are 3 things that we can do to help us follow through on our decisions or resolutions, to get on with our journey in this world.
- Discover your purpose. If you know your purpose, you can take the next step in moving forward, you will know which road to follow. Keep in mind what Solomon said we were created for: a reason and a purpose, to be about the business of God.
“For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s.” – Romans 14:8
“Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” – 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
God’s Word in Philippians 2:12-13 says, “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.” Your purpose is to live out and fulfill the purpose of God for your life. He is working to unfold that plan in your life and He has enabled you in and through the Spirit. Your responsibility is to cooperate with His work in you.
1 Corinthians 10:31 says, “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” The primary, or first, purpose of your life should be to know God and have an ongoing relationship with Him that brings Him glory in the way you live your life.
In Ephesians 2:10, “For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” The purpose for which man was created is to know God through his Son Jesus Christ and to live for Him. You are not here to serve and please yourself; you have a higher calling. If you don’t understand your purpose, then your life is built on the wrong foundation.
Your primary/first purpose here is not to be successful or have a wonderful career. Your purpose is not to be happy in your earthly accomplishments or earn a lot of money. Your purpose is not even to find love and have a family. The Word of God says, “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness…” (Matthew 6:33). Having a family and a job and being successful are not wrong, it is just that they cannot come before the main purpose for which you were created — to know God and glorify him with your life. When you get that straight, then the rest will start to fall into place. God has a plan for us all. There is a season, a time, for everything under heaven.
So is your primary purpose going to become secondary or is it going to be the priority in your life? Are you going to walk in accordance with His will or do your own thing?
Because the second thing we need to do is prioritize, “lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.” What is it that takes priority in your life? I will tell you that your priorities should line up with your purpose. If they don’t …Setting priorities is not about choosing between what is good and what is bad. That has been settled when you decide to live out your God-given purpose in life. Priorities have to be set when the choice is between what is good and what is best, between what will be beneficial and what is actually God’s will for you. Don’t confuse charity and community service as ministry.
Setting priorities is about getting the most from your life. Setting priorities helps you to trim down your involvement in things outside of your purpose.
God’s Word, in Colossians 3:23, says, “And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men.” It isn’t always important what we do, but why and how we do it. Are you doing it wholeheartedly because you want to please the Lord? Or are there a few selfish reasons behind what you are making a priority? Don’t rationalize what you are doing… more is caught than taught…
3rd Have a plan every one of us receives the same amount of time each day. Martin Luther, John Wesley, Mother Teresa, or Billy Graham, had no more hours in a day to accomplish what they did, than you do. We are tempted to hold tightly to the things we see and understand and enjoy. We do not like change unless it benefits us/me.
In Matthew 7:7, “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.” God is more than willing to show us His will and plan for our lives, but He also wants us to show that we want to know it and follow it. So if you are asking, and seeking, and knocking, and doing everything as to the Lord, then you can rest assured that He will show you His will for your life.
Is what you plan good, acceptable, perfect?
- What is your purpose?
- What is your first priority?
- What is your plan?
Further Reading: Matthew 6:33, Mark 8:36, Romans 14:8, 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, 1 Corinthians 10:31, Ephesians 2:10, Philippians 2:12-13, Philippians 3:13-14, Hebrews 12:1-17, Jeremiah 29:11, Psalm 57 (vs. 2)