Faithlife Sermons

12-31-2017 - A Life of Praise

Christmas  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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We are made to praise God in word and deed.

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Thesis: We are made to praise God in word and deed.
For Kids: How can you tell what someone likes? (If you were picking out a present for someone) How can you tell if they like Jesus?

Sermon

Me

Pollution

Air
Water
Noise
Our friends in Beijing
who have to wear masks when they go outside because the air is toxic
who go years without seeing the stars
Can't hear the crickets above the car horns in the concrete jungle
I enjoy these few weeks after Christmas because the neighborhood has less loud music and shouting at 2am while the college students are away on break.
There's something that feels that feels more truly alive beneath the loud noises of anger and frustration we make as human beings.
We
It's why we often move out to the country, get out on the water and go fishing, or find a quiet beach to sit and listen to the ocean and read a good book.
We don't mind sound
We love good music
But the noise of anger and frustration wears us down
But we cannot run away forever
And we cannot escape the anger and frustration we create ourselves.

How do we live in this polluted world?

God

God created our world to live and to thrive, not to suffer and die.

The gasses that pollute the air are often cleaned by plants, providing richer healthier oxygen to support more life.
Fires burn away sickness and disease in plants
Water dissolves away many impurities
The ground filters the water and adds healthy minerals
Animals help pollinate plants and fertilize their growth.
All things work together for the good of creation and God's glory
We are going to learn more about this in the weeks to come.

The one wild card in the middle of this great work is us.

We as human beings often do not play our own part in the great redemptive cycle of creation

What is the key to changing a place of suffering and death into a place of thriving life?

Praise.

Scripture
Psalm 148:1–6 NIV
Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord from the heavens; praise him in the heights above. Praise him, all his angels; praise him, all his heavenly hosts. Praise him, sun and moon; praise him, all you shining stars. Praise him, you highest heavens and you waters above the skies. Let them praise the name of the Lord, for at his command they were created, and he established them for ever and ever— he issued a decree that will never pass away.
The stars in the sky praise God
The stars in the sky praise God
Praise the Lord from the heavens;
praise him in the heights above.
2 Praise him, all his angels;
praise him, all his heavenly hosts.
3 Praise him, sun and moon;
praise him, all you shining stars.
4 Praise him, you highest heavens
and you waters above the skies.
5 Let them praise the name of the Lord,
for at his command they were created,
6 and he established them for ever and ever—
he issued a decree that will never pass away.
The stars in the sky praise God
The Sun comes up each day as a symbol of God's unfailing love
The moon shines as a reminder that God watches over us even in the darkness
Psalm 148:7–12 NIV
Praise the Lord from the earth, you great sea creatures and all ocean depths, lightning and hail, snow and clouds, stormy winds that do his bidding, you mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars, wild animals and all cattle, small creatures and flying birds, kings of the earth and all nations, you princes and all rulers on earth, young men and women, old men and children.
Psalm 148:
All creatures serving God
you great sea creatures and all ocean depths,
8 lightning and hail, snow and clouds,
stormy winds that do his bidding,
9 you mountains and all hills,
fruit trees and all cedars,
10 wild animals and all cattle,
small creatures and flying birds,
11 kings of the earth and all nations,
you princes and all rulers on earth,
12 young men and women,
old men and children.
All creatures serving God
All people created to serve God
Psalm 148:13–14 NIV
Let them praise the name of the Lord, for his name alone is exalted; his splendor is above the earth and the heavens. And he has raised up for his people a horn, the praise of all his faithful servants, of Israel, the people close to his heart. Praise the Lord.

A special place for the servants of God.

for his name alone is exalted;
his splendor is above the earth and the heavens.
14 And he has raised up for his people a horn, 
the praise of all his faithful servants,
of Israel, the people close to his heart.
Praise the Lord.
A special place for the servants of God.
Not just pastors
Everyone who is part of the family of faith
Everyone who has been given the saving grace of God
And thereby responsible for sharing that grace

All of these aspects of creation praise God

Not just with their words, but with their deeds.
You cannot praise God in disobedience
Obedience is praising God with your actions.

Christmas

Every creature in the Christmas story was either praising God or rebelling against Him.
Do you think that stopped the next day?
Do you not think those angels followed Jesus his entire life?
We know they were there in the wilderness when He was being tempted.
We know Jesus said even the rocks would cry out and praise Him if none of the people did.
The winds and the waves obeyed Him.
The demons feared Him and fled from Him.
Strangers flocked to Him and had their lives changed
young and old
rich and poor
Jew and Gentile
From day 1.

Does your life praise God?

You

What kind of air and sound will you fill the world around you with?

Will your actions match your words and fill them with grace or leave them empty and disappointing to God and to the world around you?

We

We don't have to make up for past mistakes

There is grace

You may receive opportunities to correct past mistakes

But if we are not living a life of praise today, we probably will be too busy grumbling and complaining that we will miss those opportunities altogether.

Church Scrapbook as a Documentary of God in our community
An incredible way to invite people into our church family
Celebrating God's work among us

God is going to grow us this next year, because we are offering ourselves to His service in praise

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