I Almost Gave Up
Momentum • Sermon • Submitted • Presented • 47:17
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An object in motion will stay in motion unless acted on by an outside force. An object at rest will stay at rest unless acted on by an outside force. This is the first law of physics, but is true of our lives as well. We may enter into a situation energized, but become discouraged as outside obstacles come in our way. We may be stagnant in our situation, but as soon as we move into action, things begin to change. How do we gain the momentum to succeed and more importantly, how do we keep it?
Momentum Makes The Difference Luke 5:4 (Jesus Word Go) VISION SUNDAY
Maximize Momentum Luke 5:4
Sparks That Matter (Peter walking on water and the woman w/ issue of blood)
Maintain Momentum (Nehemiah 4 … determined focus)
1 Truly God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart. 2 But as for me, my feet had almost stumbled, my steps had nearly slipped. 3 For I was envious of the arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.
13 All in vain have I kept my heart clean and washed my hands in innocence. 14 For all the day long I have been stricken and rebuked every morning. 15 If I had said, “I will speak thus,” I would have betrayed the generation of your children. 16 But when I thought how to understand this, it seemed to me a wearisome task, 17 until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I discerned their end.
25 Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. 26 My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
something about almost giving up
Here we are in the book of Psalms. This past summer we did a series on Psalms called “The Songs of Summer”.
There are more than seven men who composed the Psalms. Some of those men are easily identifiable while others are hidden to us and will only be known to us when we get to heaven.
• David—Wrote at least 73 of the Psalms.
• The sons of Korah—Accounted for ten of them (42; 44-49; 84-85; & 87).
• Asaph—Wrote 12 of them (50; 73-83).
• Solomon—Wrote two (72, 127).
• Moses—Wrote one (90).
• Heman—Wrote one (88).
• Ethan—Wrote one (89).
-The remaining fifty psalms remain anonymous to us, although Ezra is thought to be the writer of some of those.
-What makes the Psalms even more compelling is when you consider who the author was and what the conditions were that surrounded the writing of that psalm.
Of all the books in the Old Testament the Book of Psalms most vividly represents the faith of people who trust in God. The Psalms are the inspired responses to what God has done or will do. The Psalms are the largest collection of what’s called “ancient lyrical poetry”. Ancient lyrical poetry is poetry to expresses the emotions of the poet. It’s really the Blues of the ancient world. In other words the poet is saying what they feel and they want you to feel what they are saying.
In the Hebrew Bible this book is actually called the “Book of Praises”, because most of the Psalms have some element of praise.
Here we are in Psalm 73 written by Asaph
David was the only person that wrote more psalms than Asaph. You see Asaph was special because he was a tabernacle minister of music during the Kingship of David.
Here’s what his job was, 1 Chron. 16 tells us that he had to “sing constant praise and thanks to the Lord of Israel.” Everyday he had to go before the ark of God and sing praise to the Lord of Israel.
And today we are blessed, we’ve been selected by the tabernacle selection committee to have the privilege of shadowing Asaph to learn something about keeping momentum when you want to give up.
We get to his house just as he’s about to take his daily walk to the tabernacle.
He greets us and says, I’m glad you all get to hang out with me today, I don’t know that I can teach you much but I’ll do my best.
He starts walking but he’s moving slow… he says to us, “you’ll have to excuse me for a while now my body has been in pain, I don’t know what it is but it makes my day pretty hard. It’s hard for me to sing sometime because I’m in so much pain but I just do my best.
Some people wave at him as we all walk past.
Then he stops in at a little coffee shop. He says to us. “I normally start my day early so that I can get here and grab a cup of coffee it also gives me a little time to rest my body.”
He sits at a little table and others walk by going about their day. When people see him they wave and say… “God is God All the time....”
I. What You Were Taught Matters
I. What You Were Taught Matters
Asaph opens up this Psalm by saying “Truly God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart”.
In Psalm 73 :1 Asaph is recounting what he’s been taught about who God is. Because from childhood he would have been told the stories about how God got them through.
He would have been taught how God blessed Abram and caused him to have many dissidents.
He would have been taught how God used Moses to lead his people out of Egyptian bondage.
He would have been taught how God blessed Joshua to lead to people into a land flowing with milk and honey.
The Israelites understood that in order for their values to survive they need to teach it to the next generation.
One of the problems we have now is that we have people knowing more Cardi B lyrics than what God’s word says.
Folk spend more time analyzing the movie US than analyzing what God’s word says.
Folk spend more time teaching their children football and basketball than how to pray and how to seek God for guidance.
What you are taught matters.
I’m thankful for Grandmomma teaching me how to pray.
I’m thankful for the Sunday school teachers that tought me the Bible stories that let me know that God can make a way out of no way.
I’m thankful for the conversations with momma that let me know that God is a provider.
Asaph starts by saying God is good… and he knew that because he was taught the goodness of God.
Anybody here thankful for the lessons you’ve learned about who our God is?
Anybody here thankful for the lessons you’ve learned about how our God will show up?
Is there anybody here that can say with Asaph God is Good?
My brother my sister… what you are taught matters.
But Pastor I wasn’t taught the Bible as a child, I came to church because I was invited.
Oh but you were still taught about God… the heavens declare the glory of God… the fact the you woke up this morning and the earth was till spinning on its axes shows the goodness of God.
The fact the the Sun was still shinning bright in its place shows the goodness of God.
The fact that you were able to capture air in your lungs and keep on breathing shows the goodness of God.
Nature itself teaches us that God is good.
What you are taught about God matters.
Asaph sips his coffee and waves at a few more people as they walk by.
Then a group walks by and everybody starts staring at them… they look different. Their cloths seems brighter than everyone elses, even the shop owners come out to great these people. They look both healthy and wealthy and they know it.
They see Asaph and the see us sitting with him… they come up and say to us… what are y’all doing with this fool? We say we are shadowing him for the day.
They say I don’t know why all he’s going to teach you is how to waste your time. Look at him he goes into that tabernacle everyday and he’s still sick, you’d think he’d be as healthy and wealthy as we are after all the singing he’s done.
Asaph get’s mad and says let’s go..
Then second thing shadowing Asaph teaches us is that… while what you are taught matters, what you experience matters more.
II. What You Experience Matters More
II. What You Experience Matters More
While walking Asaph looks up towards the sky and says… God I’m not sure how much longer I can do this. Everyday I get up and do my best for you and I have to see these people who don’t care about you doing better than me.
Look at them walking around all healthy and wealthy but here I am struggling to get to the tabernacle.
What’s the point of me trying and serving and singing praises to you and yet I’m still struggling. I thought surly things would be better for me by now. This is it for me, I can’t do this anymore.
Asaph’s problem was that he was frustrated when maintaining momentum when he saw the wicked doing better than him. He was frustrated when his experience didn’t match his expectation.
My brothers and my sisters, yes what you are taught matters but what you experience matters more.And this is where the problems comes in for many us when it comes to keeping our momentum. Please hear this anybody can maintain momentum for a short period of time. And when your experience doesn’t match your expectations you look for an exit.
Ex. of me racing Larry and Gill
III. What God Says Matters Most
III. What God Says Matters Most
In God’s presences you get God’s word. In God’s presence is understanding. When we get into God’s presence we begin to understand that God’s ways are not our ways.
We learn that You can be in the lead and still not be in first place.
Ex. Race car driving with the boys.
It wasn’t about which position you were in on the track it’s about how well you raced.
Don't Quit by John Greenleaf Whittier
When things go wrong as they sometimes will, When the road you're trudging seems all up hill, When the funds are low and the debts are high And you want to smile, but you have to sigh, When care is pressing you down a bit, Rest if you must, but don't you quit.
Life is strange with its twists and turns As every one of us sometimes learns And many a failure comes about When he might have won had he stuck it out; Don't give up though the pace seems slow— You may succeed with another blow.
Success is failure turned inside out— The silver tint of the clouds of doubt, And you never can tell just how close you are, It may be near when it seems so far; So stick to the fight when you're hardest hit— It's when things seem worst that you must not quit.
Have you ever compared yourself to others and felt worse about yourself?
What are some unmet expectation that are causing you to look for an exit?
What does God’s word say about your situation?