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Excuses and Encouragment

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Intro

Excuses

I. God’s Calling and Making Excuses
1. The Task is too much.
Jeremiah had a daunting task before him, he was called to be a prophet to the nations. (Vs. 5), His dad and grandad were priests, this is what he knew growing up, but his calling is different.
A key difference between these two things is the predictability of the job. A priest woke up in the morning, or goes to bed at night knowing what’s happening during their next day. A prophet never knew what God was going to call him to preach tomorrow and sometimes who they would even be talking with the next day. The priest labored to preserve the past, a prophet labored to change the present in order that nations would have a future. Their jobs were to reach out to nations in order that they would repent and turn from their sin and back to their God, as is today, some people don’t want anything to do with that. This calling is demanding to say the least, it is easy to excuse his way out of it.
But what we see is that although God may place on us very demanding things, He will keep us going even when we want to quit, to strengthen and make us bold. But God told Jeremiah that He had this for Jeremiah before his birth even happened. Although it was a daunting task, God’s purpose will not be done away with. God can use anyone.
2. I can’t do that.
Then we see Jeremiah say in vs. 6 “I am only a youth, I don’t know how to speak in this way.” I can’t do it, im too young.
God overcomes our weaknesses and what we see as burdens to God’s call on us. And our talent (or what we think the lack thereof) may seem inadequate, but God equips those whom He calls for the task that He has laid before them.
Don’t allow an excuse of age or any excuse that you can come up about yourself to keep you from serving God.
3. Really? Now?
We see in vs. 17 that God says, “Now, get ready. Stand up and tell them everything that I command you.”
Jeremiah’s call was immediate! God is telling Jeremiah to roll up those sleeves and get ready for work now!
God is immediately calling Jeremiah to act, not next week, not when he is comfortable to do so, or when he feels like he is able to, but now.
God expects immediate obedience from us as His people, and immediate obedience is the only answer we can give.
So what excuses are we making to God? He will fulfill His purpose in you, He will enable you to do what He tells you to do, He will guide you and be present with you no matter where you go. And your view of your success, do not base it on the peoples response to the message you share, just be faithful.

Encouragement

Jeremiah 1:5 ESV
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.”
Vs. 5. “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.”

1. Jeremiah’s Calling is from God.

What makes this calling special for Jeremiah from God?
a. God knew him
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you.” God set his caring eye upon Jeremiah and chose him—This is the biblical concept of God knowing his people. This is true for every child of God. ()
God knows you, he knows your doubts, worries, fears, He knows who you are because He created you. So when God places a calling on your life, it is not Him hoping you can do the job, it is because He created you to do that job. He knows your thoughts, your heart, your actions, God knows and loves His people. This should be a comfort for us knowing that God knows us.
b. God called him
God tells Jeremiah, “Before you were born I consecrated you.” God had placed this purpose on Jeremiah’s life before he was even born. He destined Jeremiah for something divine and significant. This is true for you today as well. In everything that we have in God, He gave it to us for a purpose, for a reason, to be like Christ and use our gifts for God’s glory.
He did not call us to do nothing, He even called us to live out our faith beyond these walls on Sunday mornings. , whatever we do, do for Christ. Every word we say, every action we do, every person we reach, we should do it for the glory of God. God has placed a call on all of you today, do not neglect this calling in disobedience.
c. God created him
“Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you.” What Jeremiah was through the genetic makeup of his parents was no accident. God shaped and designed Jeremiah in his mother’s womb. This whole concept here is the same a designing a house or sculpting a statue.
You, you are no accident, the one whom God sculpted and made in your Mother’s womb, God knew you and created you, you are designed well and are known very well by God. If you are truly called to something by God, it is because His design is for it.

2. Jeremiah is under God’s Authority (Vs. 7)

Me getting frustrated at Luke because he would tell me to get out of his house when it wasn’t his but his aunt and uncle’s, he had no authority over me there because it wasn’t his. We go in God’s authority over this whole earth, we do what we do for Christ in his authority, because this world is His.
God said for to everyone that I send you, you shall go. This means that when we go, we go in the name of Christ. In our society today, we are told that our faith is a private matter that shouldn’t be discussed, that those are lines that we should not cross, but God has called us to cross those lines

3. God is present with Jeremiah to deliver him.

The basis of overcoming fear is the assurance of God’s presence.
A great obstacle to serving the Lord, especially among the young, is the fear of rejection and opposition. All kinds of thoughts enter the mind about how some people might not like the way I do it. People might disagree or be offended. I might make a mistake and get criticized. The fear of man is a great hindrance to ministry.
So God says, Don't fear, because I will be with you and I will deliver you. God's presence and approval is more valuable than all the approvals of men. And God says that in and through all your troubles, I will deliver you. You will triumph in the end. You will be more than a conqueror. And the same thing is promised to all of us in Christ Jesus today:
"God has said, 'I will never fail you or forsake you.' Therefore we can confidently say, 'The Lord is my helper, I will not be afraid; what can man do to me?'" ()
"If God is for us who can be against us?" ()
So do not let yourselves allow excuses, which are based in fear, doubt, and worry drive you away from the call of God. Remember as you are called to things that may worry you that your purpose is given to you by God, and He doesn’t make mistakes, that you don’t do this ministry in your own authority or in people’s approval, and the Lord will be with you to strengthen, guide, and deliver you.
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