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Life boat the heart of God Sermon; What to do when life takes you under (4-4)

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Title: Lifeboat: the heart of God

Theme: To understand the big picture by understanding the heart of God.

Text Jonah 4:1-11

Goal: To rediscover the truth of God’s creation.


Me: orientation: (find common ground with the audience)

·        How many of you in varies situations, maybe country, govt.. whatever if you were in charge you could solve the problem?

·        If__________ would just get it we could move beyond and solve the problem. If I were_______ then it would be better.

·        How many now are smart enough to realize they may not see the whole picture.

We: Identification (Make it clear that you struggle)

Trust today is a big issue. There are times when I find it hard to trust those around me… president… denomination… why? Didn’t turn out as I planned.

·        We see their humanity

·        We are not sure they see who we are and our needs

·        We may not understand them or believe they know us.

Do you trust God?

·        Do you believe God sees and knows you?

·         ( relationship with Christ) Hedging your bets

·        Faith and trust work together in the walk

God: illumination (The goal here is to resolve the tension by pointing people to God)

What to do when life takes you under

The book depicts the larger scope of God’s purpose for Israel: that she might rediscover the truth of his concern for the whole creation and that she might better understand her own role in caring out that concern.

I.            Discovering the lifeboat ( recap… Jonah)

10 When God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he had compassion and did not bring upon them the destruction he had threatened.

Book of the second chance… a God of love,

A.  God delivers Jonah and he obeys

·        Angry: . angry—literally, “hot,” probably, with grief or vexation, rather than anger [Fairbairn]. How sad the contrast between God’s feeling on the repentance of Nineveh towards Him, and Jonah’s feeling on the repentance of God towards Nineveh. Strange in one who was himself a monument of mercy on his repentance!

·        When your greatest fears come true

·        Prayed… I knew it prayer ( be angry and even pray in our anger)

·        He doesn’t see the compassion in his life and Nineveh as the same

B.    God delivers Nineveh and there life changes

·        Jonah sees this and is emotional all over the place.

3 Now, O LORD, take away my life, for it is better for me to die than to live."

4 But the LORD replied, "Have you any right to be angry?"

5 Jonah went out and sat down at a place east of the city. There he made himself a shelter, sat in its shade and waited to see what would happen to the city.

·        Jonah loses sight of what God is all about

·        He moves from understanding the picture to missing the big picture

·        Do you think we as Christians ever miss the big picture?

C.    Israel and the church can lose sight

·        God is a God of redemption…

·        God loves you and wants you to know him… Jesus

·        World as well and wants to use you in the process

Discovering the lifeboat…

II.          Rediscover the life boat

A.     The purpose of rediscovery

Have you ever been afraid to share Christ with others… what will they think of me…

Illustration my first sermon knees knocking

When we think about what others will think of me we are focused wrong.

The heart of God says… if I can save a life… can I see them and love as God loves.

·        See others not through our eyes  but God’s

·        Maybe you are too busy or other concerns


6 Then the LORD God provided a vine and made it grow up over Jonah to give shade for his head to ease his discomfort, and Jonah was very happy about the vine. 7 But at dawn the next day God provided a worm, which chewed the vine so that it withered. 8 When the sun rose, God provided a scorching east wind, and the sun blazed on Jonah's head so that he grew faint. He wanted to die, and said, "It would be better for me to die than to live."

 9 But God said to Jonah, "Do you have a right to be angry about the vine?"
      "I do," he said. "I am angry enough to die."

B.    The journey of rediscovery

·        The journey of rediscovery begins with our heart and God’s

11 But Nineveh has more than a hundred and twenty thousand people who cannot tell their right hand from their left, and many cattle as well. Should I not be concerned about that great city?"

Trustee illustration…. White base board counter

Worried about scuff marks rather than people,,, kids are more important

C.    The choice ( Rediscover… comes to choice and heart God’s & yours)

·        Will you choose to seek to know the heart of God for you and others.

·        Can God be trusted?

III.        Which boat are you in

A.     In the end we are left with a cliff hanger

·        In the end Jonah’s heart … we don’t know

B.    The Christian can be in the place of cliff hanger

·        Will the church survive?... only if we open to God’s heart second chance

·        Will we become what God calls us to be?

·        Will new denominations spring up to replace those who have lost the heart of God?

C.    Understanding the heart of God makes the difference

·        Means we must act and live in God’s purpose… redemption self & others

·        Which boat are you in?

You: Application (tell people what to do with what they have heard)

God has a plan and wants the best for you.

God of the Second Chance

Seek to understand the heart of God

·        Daily time with God ( 10 min. easy)

·        Prayer for the heart ( send e-mails with what you learn)

We Inspiration is an emotion identify, vision casting

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