Faithlife Sermons

At The Bottom of Everest

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Whatever the call, whatever the cost

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Welcome to Renew!

Standing at the base looking over 29,000 feet in the air, he couldn’t help but think of the people before him. Men have died here. People he knew had tried to accomplish this feat but had failed. He had read stories of previous attempts to accomplish this. Over the last 30 years several had put in the research and the work to make this possible. Could he do it? Will I make it? On the morning of May 26th, 1953, facing the fears of the severe weather, falls from high cliffs or into deep crevasses, and even the chance of mountain sickness, Edmund Hillary and his partner Tenzing Norgay readied themselves to make it to the peak of Mt. Everest. For three days, the two explorers faced excruciating cold weather. They lugged their supplies with them every step of the way, struggling to acclimate to the environment. But they were committed. They knew this was their time. ON the morning of May 29th, they departed the final camp to make the final ascent. Only a few hours into the final climb, they reached a peak that they found almost impossible to climb. Wedging himself in a crack in the face, Hillary inched himself up what was thereafter known as the Hillary’s Step. Hillary threw down a rope, and Norgay followed. At about 11:30 a.m., the climbers arrived at the top of the world. Where many had come before them, including men from their own team, and failed, they were finding themselves the first to ever make it to the top of Everest. What was once seemingly impossible, was now a reality. What seemed to be inevitable failure turned out to be an epic victory!
On the final day of 2017, I am sure we are all getting ready to start the new year with some resolutions
Maybe you want to spend more time with family or read more, or maybe even lose weight and get healthy
All of these things take commitment
It takes a complete dedication to fulfilling those resolutions
According to an article on Forbes.com only 8% of people complete their New Year’s Resolutions
92% of people fail at finishing what they started!
Why?
From setting too many to making them too lofty, most of the time it all comes down to staying 100% committed.
They stand at the base of their Everest and look up at the 29,000 foot climb, instead of letting the desire of knowing what it will feel like on the tip of the mountain drive them.
Maybe it’s not resolutions, but dreams
You’ve set out to climb Everest, but fear of failure, negative influence in your life and other circumstances have pushed you back down the mountain.
Commitment means we turn around and start over.
Begin the ascent again
Failure is not final
We have spent 2017 concentrating on being Rooted
We have focused on how we can get our roots deeper in our relationship with God, and with our community
We have strived to be rooted in Jesus
Colossians 2:6–7 ESV
Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.
But now as we dive into 2018, it is time to focus on being Committed
Whatever the call, whatever the cost
Committing to this church, this community and more importantly to the advancement of the Kingdom!
Committing to seeing the vision and mission of this house come to fruition
Committing to the call that he has for us as a body and as individuals
2018 is the beginning of a new chapter in Renew Bryant
We have made many memories over this year
We have had some big wins this year
But we have only scratched the surface of what God has for us
2018 is the beginning of a new chapter in your life as well
I am sure 2017 has brought its challenges and adversity, but I am sure it has had many victories as well
But we are only scratching the surface as to what he has for us this year!
None of this comes without a commitment level bigger than we have ever had
2018 will present the possibilities of moving from 1 tier to the next
But we have to be all in!
We have to be completely committed to make it happen
Whatever the call, whatever the cost
Commitment requires a new mindset
A change in our approach to the call that God has for us individually and corporately
My goal for you today is to walk away from this gathering with a shift in your mindset
Or at least the keys to move toward that shift
finds Jesus being, in a sense, formally introduced.
He had alluded to his death only once () and his resurrection only once ()
Now he would begin to teach his disciples, from this moment on that he would be betrayer, arrested, beaten and crucified, but promises to rise again ()
Matthew 16:21 ESV
From that time Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.
This was a difficult message for them to hear
This man was to be the one to bring the new kingdom of Israel to fruition
He was the promised messiah
And now he is going to die
This message didn’t fit their idea of who Jesus was going to be
They were all standing at the bottom of their Everest.
Jesus would have to climb this mountain that would lead to his death
Matthew 16:24 ESV
Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.
Jesus was asking them to climb this mountain with him
Were the committed to him?
Were they 100% in with this?
The message that was being delivered would shape not only their present situation, but would echo throughout eternity
Jesus was asking them to walk this
The decision of commitment would literally shape the world in a manner none of them could even fathom
We find ourselves in that position as well
Our decision this year will shape the outcome of our homes, our families, this church and this community forever.
Whoa!
I know that is intense to think about but let me assure you, regardless of whatever level you are on, your decision to commit will change EVERYTHING your future self does.
Let’s Pray - PRAY for Renew and for Bryant

I Have No Rights and My Feelings Don’t Matter

As a fifteen year old I scoffed at this
Why do I have no rights and why does what I feel not matter?
I challenged my youth pastor on this
I was young and immature
Much like the disciples I had no idea what it meant to commit completely to Jesus
Matthew 16:21–23 ESV
From that time Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, “Far be it from you, Lord! This shall never happen to you.” But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me. For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.”
What a tense rebuke for Peter!
Just a few moments earlier, Jesus had proclaimed that the church that Jesus would build would be built on the him and nothing could stand in the way!
Then he called him SATAN!
Why?
Peter knew who Jesus was in his mindset
A mindset that meant Jesus would fill the Peter’s concept
Peter had a right to be free from this Roman control
Peter’s began to get all in his feels because it wasn’t fair that HIS messiah was saying he was going to die
Peter could only see his present day circumstances
We tend to view Jesus the same way
He should do for us what is beneficial in the here and now
We must begin to view Jesus with an eternal viewpoint
When our viewpoint switches to what is beneficial to us, to what is beneficial to eternity, then our commitment level changes
It is no longer about us, it is about those who will come after us
Our children, grandchildren and the generations that will come after
We no longer think about our conveniences and our comfort

Switching to this mindset pushes to go beyond the easy to the crucial
It causes us to DENY and FOLLOW

ἀπαρνέομαι

ἀπαρνέομαι

c

ἀπαρνέομαι

ἀπαρνέομαι
a - par - NEY - oh - my
Means to utterly deny, disown or abstain
Denying ourselves means that it does not matter what we have the right to do
It does not matter what we feel
It means that we will give up everything for the cause of Christ
When we pick up the cross, we let go of everything
We must deny ourselves the convenience and comfort that sometimes we feel we have/need and follow Jesus completely unashamed!
We will do whatever it takes to fulfill the call that God has for us!

Faith/Fear

Imagine what Edmund Hillary went through
Many men had died
He knew there was a LARGE chance he would too
Many had failed at what he was trying to accomplish
He knew it was going to be cold and he was going to be cold
But he believed he could do it!
His commitment took switching from fear dominant to faith dominant
I imagine Peter, and the other disciples, felt a sense of fear when they heard Jesus predict the hell that was coming his way
Fear is one of the most crippling components in our call Jesus has for us.
Fear can be a debilitating injury in this race
I believe it is fear that drove Peter to have the response that he had to Jesus
He was afraid of what was coming
He did not want Jesus to endure these things
But his faith had not been made strong just yet
Standing at the bottom of our Everest can seem impossible
We look at the 29,000 feet that we have to climb instead of picturing ourselves at the top
If Peter could see what was coming for himself and for eternity, I am certain that he would have been the first to jump up and proclaim, “I’m all in!”
This is the same man that got out of the boat in the middle of the storm to walk toward Jesus!
ESV Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.
Hebrews 11:1 ESV
Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.
In faith we are assured of what our hope is
Faith allows us to see when we cannot see!
Where FEAR is the crippler, FAITH is the catalyst!
What is your Everest?
Are you imagining yourself at the top or are you looking from the ground?
What is our Everest?
What if we began to rest in the ASSURANCE of God for what he has for our lives and our church?
How would that change our approach?
I’ve asked before but if you knew you couldn’t fail, what would you do?
We have to walk in faith not fear!

So Why is This Important?

The Bible Guide Jesus Predicts His Death (16:21–28)

Those who commit themselves totally to Jesus will one day see his glory as the Son of man, welcome his kingdom and receive his reward.

If we deny ourselves and take up the cross we gain more than we could ever imagine
Matthew 16:26 ESV
For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?
What can God do with us if we commit everything to him?
Whatever the call, whatever the cost?
Are you willing to trade your soul to see what God will do in return?

Where Do We Go From Here?

We have index cards to fill out
What is holding you back from committing?
Meditate
Matthew 16:26 ESV
For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?
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