The high school students who we are recognizing today and are graduating some time very soon in the next week or so were born in the year 2000, and oh, what a year it was! I thought I might give you a few reminders of what was going on in the year 2000.
In 2000, the average price for a gallon of unleaded gas was $1.48 / about $1.71 in California.
Postage stamps were 33 cents, not 50!
2000 – it was the start of the new millennium, we had just escaped the y2K scare, when we thought that computers and the date turnover on Jan. 1st was going to possibly throw the world into technological and actual chaos. But it never happened!
The Conversation: “So, why were we so worried about Y2K again…?”
Spain’s Paralympic basketball team were ordered to return their gold medals won in Sydney after nearly all of their players were found to have no disability at all.
2000 Toys inducted to the National Toy Hall of Fame: Bicycle, Jacks, Jump Rope, Mr. Potato Head, Slinky
Superbowl XXXIV Champions: St. Louis Rams
The World Population was 6,088,000,000 / Currently 7.6 billion
FYI: The 20th Century ended on December 31st 2000, not December 31st 1999.
The Chernobyl Power Plant continued operating and producing electricity until 2000, 14 years after the Chernobyl Disaster.
Photography: A man looking for a barber chair at a garage sale purchased a two deteriorated boxes of items for $45. He later found the boxes contained 65 glass plate negatives from photographer Ansel Adams worth $200 million.
Blockbuster Video declined the chance to buy Netflix for $50 million in 2000, as of Jan. 2018 $100Billion
Please bring up the title slide - Real Life Series, Part 2 – Really? 5.6.18
So if you’re serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it. Pursue the things over which Christ presides. 2 Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ — that’s where the action is. See things from his perspective.
3 Your old life is dead. Your new life, which is your real life — even though invisible to spectators — is with Christ in God. He is your life. 4 When Christ (your real life, remember) shows up again on this earth, you’ll show up, too — the real you, the glorious you. Meanwhile, be content with obscurity, like Christ. THE MESSAGE
Whoever believes in me has real life, eternal life. THE MESSAGE
For us to continually experience Real Life, Jesus must stay the center focus of our lives! That is why we must be intentional in the way we live, and His life must be at the center. All eyes on the cross and the resurrection, church!
As we recognize this time of graduation, I am reminded that to experience real life, we must begin by understanding some of the expectations of life, something of the journey we travel, some of the experiences that we all face, and the obstacles we will encounter.
Some of the things I will share today, may cause you to set back in your chair and like the young man in the title slide, say “Really?” “Really? Pastor Phil?”
Can you imagine how much is not said about the life of Jesus as he grew up, see what scripture tells of how he grew. There’s a lot of gaps to fill in, though, isn’t there. I mean we don’t see or read much of what He was like when he turned 13, when He got his first pimple, when He triumphed over the temptation to lust, (He was tempted like we are, yet without sin)()
1. At times, Life will be really challenging, but be reminded that we have overcome the world through Jesus. Really!
In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." NKJV
"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." NIV
I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.] AMP
Real Life involves being able to experiencing the transitions of life, the changes, both anticipated and not expected that come our way. Feed your faith and starve your fears, because John reminds us that there is no fear in love, perfect love casts out all fear, he who fears is not made perfect in love…
How we roll with the punches makes a huge difference. 1. A boxing term that means to position, or move one's body or head in such a way so as to decrease the force of impact of the opponent's incoming punches.
Look at this Gif of Muhammad Ali fighting Sonny Liston, I believe. And now this quick video clip
How we deflect the enemy’s right hook or uppercut go a long way in insuring our durability and our longevity.
Remember, greater is He that is in us, than he that is in the world! And if God is for us, who can be against us?
2. Offense will really come your way, how you respond really determines how you grow and go to the next level.
Then He said to the disciples, "It is impossible that no offenses should come, but woe to him through whom they do come! 2 It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were thrown into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones. 3 Take heed to yourselves. If your brother sins against you, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him. 4 And if he sins against you seven times in a day, and seven times in a day returns to you, saying, 'I repent,' you shall forgive him." NKJV
Woe to the world because of offenses! For offenses must come, but woe to that man by whom the offense comes! NKJV
I’ve found that as a leader, no matter what I do I cannot please everybody, so I have set my heart, mind, soul and spirit on the fact that I must please God first. God’s priority in my life must always precede my desire for popularity (doesn’t everyone want to be liked) must bow and never come before my priority to be
Recently this body (as of our annual meeting in January) released this board to make some very difficult decisions. As I pondered these decisions in prayer, the Holy Spirit reminded me that one of my main priorities was to be a steward of His church, and therefore we made a difficult, but sure stewardship decision.
Still God’s word reminds me that offense will come. How I handle offense is a sure sign of my maturity in Christ. Do I let offense of any sort keep me from the peace and the presence of the Holy Spirit in my life. Church, please know that as a Christ follower and certainly a pastor, and thirdly, a leader “I know the feeling”!
Offenses and Trespasses are interchangeable here:
NT:3900 paraptoma (par-ap'-to-mah); from NT:3895; a side-slip (lapse or deviation), i.e. (unintentional) error or (wilful) transgression: KJV - fall, fault, offence, sin, trespass.
"For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. NKJV
Multiple times the scripture tells us to forgive our brother / our sister their offenses. That if we want forgiveness, we must forgive. Sounds to me like forgiving is mandatory, isn’t it church?
At Times we step back and see is this really what life is all about
3. Life goes by really fast, find your purpose!
Come now, you who say, Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a city and spend a year there and carry on our business and make money. 14 Yet you do not know [the least thing] about what may happen tomorrow. What is the nature of your life? You are [really] but a wisp of vapor (a puff of smoke, a mist) that is visible for a little while and then disappears [into thin air]. 15 You ought instead to say, If the Lord is willing, we shall live and we shall do this or that [thing]. AMP
James says it is a but a mist, a vapor, a quick and disappearing cloud. Each of us has a purpose, a calling. We are on a Assignment /Mission. We need to stay our course, fulfill our Journey /this Adventure.
"For when David had served God's purpose in his own generation, he fell asleep; NIV
4. Things you don’t expect really do happen. Life is real, and Deal with it…through God’s eyes and God’s help
Really live life through His lens, through His eyes. It’s so easy to see things through your lens of experience or experiences, your lens of past failure, rejection, opinion, and even your family of origin.
See things through the eyes of the Savior, It’s always about redemption, about grace, about forgiveness. Get a God’s eye view!
If you [really] love Me, you will keep (obey) My commands. 16 And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Comforter (Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, and Standby), that He may remain with you forever —
17 The Spirit of Truth, Whom the world cannot receive (welcome, take to its heart), because it does not see Him or know and recognize Him. But you know and recognize Him, for He lives with you [constantly] and will be in you. 18 I will not leave you as orphans [comfortless, desolate, bereaved, forlorn, helpless]; I will come [back] to you.
19 Just a little while now, and the world will not see Me anymore, but you will see Me; because I live, you will live also. 20 At that time [when that day comes] you will know [for yourselves] that I am in My Father, and you [are] in Me, and I [am] in you.
21 The person who has My commands and keeps them is the one who [really] loves Me; and whoever [really] loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I [too] will love him and will show (reveal, manifest) Myself to him. [I will let Myself be clearly seen by him and make Myself real to him.] 22 Judas, not Iscariot, asked Him, Lord, how is it that You will reveal Yourself [make Yourself real] to us and not to the world?
23 Jesus answered, If a person [really] loves Me, he will keep My word [obey My teaching]; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home (abode, special dwelling place) with him. 24 Anyone who does not [really] love Me does not observe and obey My teaching. And the teaching which you hear and heed is not Mine, but [comes] from the Father Who sent Me. AMP
Sickness, death, separation, career disaster, change.
I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge — that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. NIV
Closing: Pastor, there are some things, some feelings, that I need to let go of today.
For if you live according to [the dictates of] the flesh, you will surely die. But if through the power of the [Holy] Spirit you are [habitually] putting to death (making extinct, deadening) the [evil] deeds prompted by the body, you shall [really and genuinely] live forever. AMP
Declaration: declares “For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword… I declare I will live by the principles and authority of God’s word. He is the solution to ALL my problems and the answer to ALL my questions. I am alive in Him!