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STAYCATION  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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STAYCATION PT 4

Matthew 14:13-23 (NKJV) When Jesus heard it, He departed from there by boat to a deserted place by Himself. But when the multitudes heard it, they followed Him on foot from the cities. And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick. When it was evening, His disciples came to Him, saying, “This is a deserted place, and the hour is already late. Send the multitudes away, that they may go into the villages and buy themselves food.” But Jesus said to them, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.” And they said to Him, “We have here only five loaves and two fish.” He said, “Bring them here to Me.” Then He commanded the multitudes to sit down on the grass. And He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, He blessed and broke and gave the loaves to the disciples; and the disciples gave to the multitudes. So they all ate and were filled, and they took up twelve baskets full of the fragments that remained. Now those who had eaten were about five thousand men, besides women and children.

JESUS hears of John The Baptists death and goes to a deserted place -- this was his cousin -- they grew up together, played together as kids and knew they had a mission for God. JESUS pulls away to grieve and get away from the commotion of it all.
BUT -- when JESUS came out -- THERE WAS A CROWD THAT HAD FOLLOWED HIM TO HIS DESERTED PLACE -- & JESUS “was moved with compassion”
ILLUSTRATION
I remember when my dad passed away -- the last thing I wanted to do was minister to someone -- man can”t you see I’M GOING THRU SOMETHING MYSELF RIGHT NOW!!
Being a Christian does not isolate a person from pain, grief, and misfortune. The inevitable pain that each believer will face requires faith and perseverance to do the hard work of grieving and healing. Solitude can be a part of that process
BUT HERE -- We see Jesus model the balance of knowing personal needs and also remaining faithful to God’s call to serve others.

1st LESSON -- JESUS SHOWS US FAITH TO FOLLOW THROUGH

JESUS -- shows us that we can push past our own troubles and be aware of the needs of others at the same time.
WE NEED to even in the times when we’re having difficulties in our own lives or going through some kind of life trouble or facing a major challenge in our lives -- WE still need to be willing to have COMPASSION on those atround us
BUT WE don’t help them alone -- look what JESUS said ....

Matthew 14:17-19 (NKJV) And they said to Him, “We have here only five loaves and two fish.” He said, “Bring them here to Me.”

NO MATTER how limited we feel or even overwhelmed by someone’s need -- WE DON’T DO IT ALONE -- WE BRING IT TO JESUS AND GET HELP FROM THE OTHER DISCIPLES
Jesus served others, but not alone. At this point in Jesus’s earthly ministry, he had assembled a team. His disciples and other followers were active in serving others. It’s easy to think of Jesus as a one-man show, and certainly when it comes to the work of salvation, he is the one and only Savior. However, in the day-to-day work of loving and giving to the people he encountered, his disciples were an integral part of the operation
IT IS really an act of “Following Through” --
WE can wish it would happen -- “Boy I sure wish things would get better for you”
We can even HOPE it gets better or DREAM that it gets better
BUT -- UNTIL we “Follow Through” TOGETHER with some kind of ACTION OF FAITH -- NOTHING IS GOING TO CHANGE
ILLUSTRATION
Just like -- we ALL want to see more people saved, healed, made whole -- more people brought into and becoming a part of this Church Family -- it won’t happen until we ALL participate in ways to sow -- then GOD can multiply it. LIKE passing out these BACK TO CHURCH BROCHURES -- GOD WILL BLESS OUR “FOLLOW THROUGH” EFFORTS!!
WHEN we are willing to “Follow Through” in spite of what we are facing or our busyness -- man we are ALL BUSY -- JESUS MULTIPLIES what we need back into our own lives.
WE ALWAYS get that backwards -- and get no results -- we think -- “Well I”ll take care of this first and then I’ll get more involved Lord -- THAT NEVER WORKS!! WE sound like the young ruler that had excuses of what he needed to do first before he could totally Follow JESUS -- AND JESUS JUST WALKED AWAY!!
ALOT OF TIMES we all have good intentions -- SEE the disciples had Good Intentions to send the people away so thery could eat -- BUT JESUS challenged them by saying “Hey we can feed them!” -- and when they are stopped by their own focus on limitations -- JESUS SHOWS THEM “WE CAN DO IT TOGETHER” WHEN WE INVOLVE HIM
HOW DO WE INVOLVE JESUS?
Praying in the Holy Spirit
Following Through By Faith
WHEN YOU go to pass out brochures & invite people to church -- that’s following through by FAITH -- Believing JESUS will multiply our Follow Through -- HE WILL!!!
Now Let’s Move Right To The Next Lesson Jesus Teaches Us ....

Matthew 14:22-29 (NKJV) Immediately Jesus made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He sent the multitudes away. And when He had sent the multitudes away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. Now when evening came, He was alone there. But the boat was now in the middle of the sea, tossed by the waves, for the wind was contrary. Now in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went to them, walking on the sea. And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out for fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.” And Peter answered Him and said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” So He said, “Come.” And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus.

2ND LESSON -- JESUS SHOWS US FAITH TO FOCUS

ILLUSTRATION
When Linda and I lived in Florida, one day a friend asked me to go deep sea fishing for Red Snapper, Amberjack and other big fish. So we went on a group fishing boat early one morning -- my first and last one -- when we started getting out to sea, it started raining, so we all went below, about 20 of us, and then the waves went from 2 ft to 9 ft “The weather started getting rough, The tiny ship was tossed” HAHAHAHA -- the guys startged telling all kinds of horrible tales and getting fearful -- then many of them started throwing up. I told my friend I’ve got to get out of here, rain or no rain -- so we went topside, thank goodness it wasn’t raining as hard but the waves were huge and the boat was like a roller coaster UP & DOWN -- my friend, an experienced fisherman said -- “Don’t look at the boat, Don’t look at the waves -- FOCUS ON THE HORIZON!

YOU KNOW WHAT RUINS FOCUS -- FEAR

When fear is present people are unreasonable

Fear causes people to imagine the worse

Fear leads to unbelief

WORSE -- FEAR will cause you to not even recognize JESUS
Matthew 14:26 (NKJV)
And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out for fear.
These guys had been with JESUS for quite awhile now -- BUT FEAR caused them to not even recognize him
It’s that “Inside The Boat” mentality -- FEAR of the waves overtaking them caused FEAR to overtake their experience -- their strength -- and their Faith In God!!
EVEN -- Peter said, “if it is you”
Fear will blind us to the work of the God
Fear keeps you in the boat of doubt
WHEN JESUS HAS ONE DESIRE -- “COME JOIN ME”
Get out of that “Inside The Boat” Mentality -- Change Your Facus From The Storm to the Horizon -- Changing your Perspective -- Peter would have never experienced a FAITH MOMENT WITH JESUS -- UNless he left the “Inside The Boat” Mentality
INSIDE THE BOAT ...
Where we have curled up in a comfort zone
Where we as weird as it sounds -- embrace our Fears as normal and stroke them
We need to realize that storms will come – they are inevitable!
Relationship storm? Financial storm? Health storm? Emotional storm
The Amazing Thing -- The Faith We Want To Walk In -- IS KNOWING JESUS IS IN THE BOAT WITH US

1. DON’T WORRY ABOUT ANYTHING

Matthew 6:31-34 (NKJV) Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

If you give your cares to God, then who has them? Leave them with Him

2. PRAY ABOUT EVERYTHING

Ephesians 6:18 (GW) Pray in the Spirit in every situation. Use every kind of prayer and request there is. For the same reason be alert. Use every kind of effort and make every kind of request for all of God’s people.

3. THANK GOD FOR ALL HE HAS DONE

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (ASV) Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus to you-ward.

WHEN GOING THROUGH A TOUGH TIME -- Take the time to write out a Blessing List of all the good things God has done for you.
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