L.I.L.I.C. – Extraordrinary Acts from the Holy Spirit

LILIC (Lessons I Learned In Church – The “c” is silent, so it sounds like the lily flower.) are recaps of what I learned from church the prior Sunday.

Last Sunday’s sermon was conducted by Pastor Ricky Sarthou in CCF church extending what was said on the prior sermon (Read about Purposeful Acts of Power here). He presents the question: are you making disciples as Christ ordered?

Usually, we look at our abilities and inabilities to determine whether we can and should do something or not. If we want to participate in a Broadway musical, for example, we introspect that we may have singing talents but not dancing and conclude that it’s better to simply participate in an opera or our role must not have any dancing involved. Here we looked at our abilities from our own perception. However, the Christian mentality is much different. Instead, we must look at our God’s abilities, and we must view everything from a Godly perception.

With help from the Holy Spirit, ordinary people are turned into extraordinary people who do extraordinary things. Pastor Ricky spoke of a few stories in which ordinary people completed extraordinary tasks:

3 year-old Alexandra:

Alexandra’s parents would drive around and point out fire stations, police stations, and hospitals – places to go to for help. They had made a game out of it to ensure that their daughter knew these places and understood their importance. One day Alexandra and her father were the only people home. He had accidentally consumed the incorrect mixture of prescription pills and soon passed out. So, what could Alexandra do? She’s just a three-year-old, she knows no medical training and simply shaking her father hadn’t worked. Alexandra walked all the way from her house to the nearest fire station, about three blocks away, all by herself and told them, “Help! My father is frozen!” The firemen were amazed at her bravery and thanks to her, her father did not die.

Poor man makes disciples

Another interesting story, more closely related to the topic at hand, is the story of a poor man who made disciples. This man had nothing; he was living in a small efficiency and had no money. He lived far from his church and could no longer afford to catch a taxi to and fro so he would walk to church everyday. Other men would notice this but as they began talking to him he would share the Gospel. Later, he would have made 11 disciples for Christ and soon after this grew to 56 men he had discipled to.

Ask yourself these three questions:

  1. Am I more like Jesus today than yesterday?
  2. Am I making disciples for Him?
  3. Am I glorifying God through my life?

Do not limit God because of your inconveniences or inadequacies; do not disobey Christ’s order to make disciples just because you may feel ordinary or even afraid.  “God did not give us a spirit of timidity but of POWER” (2 Timothy 1:7). A Godly woman, Rebecca Pippert said that, “Being an extrovert isn’t essential to evangelism; obedience and love are.” In our Christian society there are no benchwarmers and on-lookers, every follower of Jesus should be a discipler for Jesus.

Who must we disciple too?

In short, everyone. This includes nonbelievers, Christians whose actions do not show Jesus is worth living for and even our other brothers and sisters. However, we must not only disciple to people we know we can win over (as discussed in the last LILIC) for fear of rejection, differences, and personal inadequacies. Make Jesus known to everyone you come in contact with; He’s worth it. 

So, whatever is holding you back is never something that should stop you from following out Jesus’ command. To ignore it is blatant and overt disobedience; as followers of Jesus we should want the whole world to know what it’s like to believe in Jesus Christ and serve the magnificent God we serve.

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L.I.L.I.C. – Purposeful Acts of Power

LILIC (Lessons I Learned In Church – The “c” is silent, so it sounds like the lily flower.) are recaps of what I learned from church the prior Sunday.

Pastor Charles Price conducted the sermon from CCF church, Manila in The Philippines. Its central focus was the Power and Purpose Christ left to His disciples before His Ascension. He paid close attention to the reactions and actions of the disciples; also, everything is found in the Book of Acts.

First off, I must say I’m glad I came to Church on Sunday. I was tired, sleepy, not in the mood, and the Devil was tempting me with my soft bed. If I hadn’t gone I would have missed a wonderful sermon. Whenever this happens to you it’s best to make an even greater attempt (and enthusiasm) to head to Church, there will be a sermon you just have to hear! I learned a lot on Sunday, things I’ve read repeatedly on my own time but hadn’t actually noticed. 

POWER

1. The word used for ‘power’ is ‘donamis’ in the Bible, meaning “Dynamite power.” It is the “action/make” part of our role as disciples. Jesus’ disciples spent more than 3 years with Him; they lived with Him, ate with Him, became a family with Him. He was their Rabbi. However, they all deserted Him. (John stayed up until the crucifixion but left Jesus’ body soon after.) I hadn’t realized how disappointing the disciples were at the time around Christ’s crucifixion.

  • The disciples fought over who was the greatest disciples during the Lord’s Supper.
  • Peter questions Jesus when he is told that he will deny Jesus three times. It is an implication that he believed Jesus did not know him well.
  • While Christ was praying before He was captured His disciples, Peter, James, and John fell asleep when they should have been guarding their Rabbi.
  • Judas’ betrayal
  • The disciples quaked in fear and hid after Jesus’ crucifixion; they didn’t even visit His grave.

Sadly, all this occurred after Jesus had spent YEARS with them. They had learned and lived with God, and yet they became discouraged and small. However, before Christ’s Ascension we see a huge change. In the Book of Acts we see the disciples being brave and faithful to God as they spread the Good News. This brings us to the second kind of power the Holy Spirit gives:

2. ‘Exusia’ used in the Bible means ‘Authority,’ this, as Pastor Charles Price described, is the power to ‘tell.’ I must admit some times it’s scary to speak up and let your voice be heard, you’re target for judgment and ridicule even if you’re right. With this type of power the disciples became bold and courageous, illustrating God’s Word and commands to others. [Question: Do you choose your words carefully when you’re trying to show a fellow Christian when they’re wrong?]

PURPOSE

With these two types of power the disciples are able to complete their purpose – spreading the Gospel and showing others that Christ is worth knowing. “Our lives tell others that Jesus Christ is worth knowing or that Jesus Christ is not worth knowing.”

An interesting fact I learned:

Compare Acts 1:8 with Acts 8:1.

Christ told His disciples to be a witness to people in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and all the ends of the earth. However, through chapters 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7, the disciples only witnessed in Jerusalem; because this is where they’re welcomed and known. The persecution of Stephen caused them to scatter to Judea and Smaria.

It is not that we need to ask for more of the Holy Spirit and His power; in reality we need to give more of ourselves to Him, wholeheartedly. We are all given the Holy Spirit to guide us, help us, and show us where to go and yet we keep our eyes on our own abilities. If you believe you can do all things through Christ, then you shouldn’t second guess nor look at what you have/don’t have. Just go out into the world and show everyone that Jesus is worth knowing!