Faithlife Sermons

Exceptional Exception

The Move  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
0 ratings
· 55 views

God can make an exceptional miracle with your exception.

Notes
Transcript
Handout
Sermon Tone Analysis
A
D
F
J
S
Emotion
A
C
T
Language
O
C
E
A
E
Social
View more →
Welcome everyone. My name is Charlie Kae and I’m the lead pastor here at Grace Empire, and if this is your first time here I want to personally welcome you and let you know that you picked the right week to be here today, and I believe that if you open up your ears and your hearts that you will walk away challenged and with unique perspective on your own life.

Our vision is to restore, revitalize, and refresh the community of Tampa Bay through an intimate relationship with Jesus.

So if you feel like your life has been battered, bruised, beat up, or broken, or bedraggled, in anyway, Grace Empire was created for you to call home. We know how hard life can be and want to make sure you are not doing life alone.
Last week we started a series called The Move. Specifically, we are gearing up and preparing for the move to Turner Bartel K-8 and our fall grand opening.
We asked the question, “how do we grow a new church?” last week and looked to the first christian church and how the original followers of Jesus grew it.
We looked at four things the disciples did, then challenged you with four initiatives in order to grow our church.
Anyone remember what they are?
Four Challenges
1. Learn from your pastors - Come to church and engage. Ask questions. Apply what you learn.
1. Come to church and engage. Ask questions. Apply what you learn.
2. Fellowship with other people - Invite someone over for dinner or go met them for coffee.
1. Invite someone over for dinner or go met them for coffee.
3. Lord’s Supper - Utilize the communion we provide every week to ground yourself.
1. Utilize the communion we provide every week to ground yourself.
4. Prayer - Pray everyday. Participate in 10 at 10.
1. Pray everyday. Participate in 10 at 10.
How has the 10 at 10 been going for people? Hard isn’t it?
But it has been good and I have been able to pray for every single one of you by name this past week. And I believe God is going to answer those prayers in a mighty way.
And thats what I want to talk about today. God answering prayers. God responding to our needs.
I want everyone to repeat this after me:

All I got, is all God needs.

You ever feel like you got nothing to bring to the table?
Playing pool and the pressure to perform for my children.
You know, as your pastor, I feel the same pressure. Sometimes I feel like things are going great, but other times I feel like you guys deserve better.
I worry, I stress, I doubt, I get worked up about things I can’t control, and get frustrated with the things I can control.
I worry about my future a lot.
Can you relate?
Im no profit but im sure everything single person in here struggles with or has struggled with inadequecies from time to time because we live in constant comparison to the things around us.
Everyone wants to feel successful. We all want to be someone with knowing and someone worth following. And im sure there are days we feel like kings and queens, but there are other days when we wonder why we are not working in fortune 500 companies, why we dont have a fancy title before our names, why didnt we choose a different career path, or if your me…why we arent speaking in front of thousands of people.
We’ve all struggled with the feeling that we are not enough and this can pertain to even how God sees us?
Can he use me? I’m not a great speaker. I cant sing. I cant play instruments. I can be a little bit socially awkward.
But this week, God has been reminding me through his word, but also through my own history that God has been with me in key moments in my life.
And I want to encourage you today, that where ever you are and whatever you are doing, that God is with you. That God sees you. And that you are enough as you are.
2 Kings 4:1–7 NLT
One day the widow of a member of the group of prophets came to Elisha and cried out, “My husband who served you is dead, and you know how he feared the Lord. But now a creditor has come, threatening to take my two sons as slaves.” “What can I do to help you?” Elisha asked. “Tell me, what do you have in the house?” “Nothing at all, except a flask of olive oil,” she replied. And Elisha said, “Borrow as many empty jars as you can from your friends and neighbors. Then go into your house with your sons and shut the door behind you. Pour olive oil from your flask into the jars, setting each one aside when it is filled.” So she did as she was told. Her sons kept bringing jars to her, and she filled one after another. Soon every container was full to the brim! “Bring me another jar,” she said to one of her sons. “There aren’t any more!” he told her. And then the olive oil stopped flowing. When she told the man of God what had happened, he said to her, “Now sell the olive oil and pay your debts, and you and your sons can live on what is left over.”
1 Kings 4:1–7 NLT
King Solomon now ruled over all Israel, and these were his high officials: Azariah son of Zadok was the priest. Elihoreph and Ahijah, the sons of Shisha, were court secretaries. Jehoshaphat son of Ahilud was the royal historian. Benaiah son of Jehoiada was commander of the army. Zadok and Abiathar were priests. Azariah son of Nathan was in charge of the district governors. Zabud son of Nathan, a priest, was a trusted adviser to the king. Ahishar was manager of the palace property. Adoniram son of Abda was in charge of force labor. Solomon also had twelve district governors who were over all Israel. They were responsible for providing food for the king’s household. Each of them arranged provisions for one month of the year.
A little bit of history, both Josephus (Ant. 9.47–48) and the Targums (Aramaic intrepetation of the Hebrew Bible) place this widow as the late wife of the prophet Obadiah, who risked his life to save a hundred prophets who was to be slain. The debt that the widow is in was money Obadiah borrowed for the maintenance of the prophets in hiding ()
Ant. 9.47–48
The prophets of old paid a high price

these followers of the covenant would have paid a high price for their commitment in the hostile environment of the official Baal cult. The time and sacrifice required to support this movement against the prevailing economic forces left little reserve when the family provider died. Even in normal times families could become so indebted that some members were given as servants to their creditors (cf. Ex. 21:1–11). God in his law provided that this would be a temporary situation (six years at the most), or that the servants could voluntarily enter into a new family relationship (especially if marriage and children were involved). Servanthood would be a dismal end for a family that had already endured so much.

these followers of the covenant would have paid a high price for their commitment in the hostile environment of the official Baal cult. The time and sacrifice required to support this movement against the prevailing economic forces left little reserve when the family provider died. Even in normal times families could become so indebted that some members were given as servants to their creditors (cf. Ex. 21:1–11).

Her dire situation was caused or in response to her husbands obedience to his call. Sometimes God calls you to do something, and the result is difficulty.
Thats the truth. We give ourselves and we get hurt. We love people and they abuse us. We try our best only to have it thrown in our faces.
This brings me a strange sense of comfort…because life through the ages hasnt changed that much. What you are experiencing as people, especially those that pursued God’s call only to be hurt or disappointed, isnt new. Its written in scripture as stories that we can relate too.
But this story has a happy ending because I can say this with my head held high, that God is faithful. Sometimes I feel like he’s not, but then I remember the altars that I built as a remembrance of his goodness, provision, and faithfulness, and my confidence in the changeless God is restored.
So what do we do with our inadequacies?

Embrace Your Limitations

The answer that the widow gives, gives us an indication of how to respond to the question:
What do you have in your house? Or in other words, what do you have to offer? or what do you have to work with?
Getting together with Pastor Brad White - Be who God made you.
Authenticity is a core value here at Grace Empire, but authenticity is more than just keeping it real. In our definition, authenticity is embracing your true self. It’s about self reflection, embracing the good and the bad of who you are, and deciding to give God just that.
The woman is desperate. She has no means of paying off the creditors that plague her door. She knows this…and when Elisha asks her what she has to offer, her response is laced in authenticity.
“Nothing at all.”
“When you embrace the limitations of your current life situation and decide to trust God completely and cooperate with Him fully in this season of your life, even greater things are possible.”
Excerpt From: Steven Furtick. “Greater.” iBooks. https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/greater/id548972825?mt=11
What I’m learning is to be comfortable with nothing at all. Im learning to be comfortable embracing my limitations as a person. I may never be on the cover of relevant magazine and I may never write a best selling novel and I may never look like all those pastors that I admire, but I am learning that is okay cause God has called me uniquely into his service.
You may never be the CEO of a company, your family may never be perfect, your name may never shine on a marquee but that doesn’t mean that God can’t show you how amazing he is…because the truth of the matter is…we may not have the look, finances, influence, or life of our neighbor whom we admire so much, but all of us have something to offer…just like the widow.

Exceptional Exception

Ever notice when you get stuck in the comparison black hole, all you seem to focus on is what you are not? We tend to focus on the things we dont do well, the talents we dont have, the screw ups, the mistakes, the inadequacies.
Embracing our limitations sounds amazing, but it is so hard to do, especially when the world constantly reminds us that we are losers.
And initially all the woman could focus on was what she didn’t have. Again, this is super comforting to me because when God calls me to do something, I rattle off a millions reasons why I’m the wrong man for the job.
Pursuing God’s call on your life is scary and hard and difficult. And Im sure you can find so many reasons why you shouldnt do it. We talk ourselves out of the right thing all the time.
But Elisha wasn’t deterred by what she didn’t have because his focus was on what she did have. His focus was on the four words that came out after she embraced her limitations...
Except a little oil.
See God doesn’t need much of anything to make a miracle happen. He can use nothing at all to make the miraculous, but he wants to use you. He desires to involve you in his miracle. He never promised that life wouldn’t be hard. He never promised that we wouldn’t suffer, but he did promise that he would be with us.
The woman brought her flask of oil and began pouring into jars, bottles, cisterns, empty mason jars, and buckets of tuperware. She poured and poured until there was nothing left to fill.
God wants to show you his extravagance, but the cost is pricey. The cost is trust. The cost is pushing your inadequacies aside and saying...”I have nothing to give, except a little of bit of what I got.” And God says…pour it out…pour it out for me and see what I can do.
Illustration about having $1500 in the bank
I poured it out…and today our little 30 person church has given over 12k in missions, have fed hundred of teachers, boughten meals for the hungry, provided shelter for the homeless, and is in no sign of slowing down.
Guys, our move to Turner Bartel will end up costing us about 80,000 dollars and look at me…do I look afraid? No…because God has shown me that all he needs is a little oil…and he needs is an exception and he can work an exceptional miracle.
Related Media
Related Sermons