The Blessings of Being Available
Monday, July 28, 2014
Do you make yourself available to spiriutal growth opportunities? Over the last few weeks I have been reminded of something many Christians do that is so defeating to their walk with the Lord. This particular thing will keep them from growing in the Lord and will cause them to be unable to stand for the Lord when they need to stand. This certain sin will keep them from being able to walk through storms in their life. Remember storms do come. And according to Jesus if you do not stand during a storm it is because you are a foolish person. Matt. 7:26 "Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them, will be a like a foolish man...." The problem is that many Christians never hear His words because they do not make themselves available to hear His words.
Let me ask you a few questions. Do you have a good doctor? Why is he good? He is good because he made himself available to medical school. He made himself available to instruction. Do you have a good mechanic? He is good because he made himself available to instruction? Do you have a good athletic team you enjoy watching? What if they never went to practice? What if they never listened to the coach?
Availability is important. This is especially true in the Christian life. If you are not available to spiritual growth opportunities you cannot expect yourself to produce spiritual qualities when they are needed. I have been a pastor for over 44 years. I have noticed something in those years. Many church members do not have a very good Christian life. They live a life of turmoil. They live a life of frustration. They have struggles in their family and do not handle them in a Christian manner. They are always living in the flesh and therefore miss so much joy and peace. And I have noticed that many of these who live in such turmoil have not made themselves available to spiritual growth opportunities. It is not difficult at all to understand why they live like foolish people. There is no spiritual growth because they let all the opportunities go buy and they were not available.
We have just finished four weeks of amazing spiritual opportunities at South Tulsa Baptist Church. We sat at the feet of David Platt and listened to him teach on the "Cross in Everyday Life". I learned so much. He taught me so many things about the Christian walk. I am more ready for Satan today than ever. I feel so encouraged about how to defeat sin and sinful habits. I was able to share with my adult children some of the truth David was teaching. I had the opportunity to share with my grandchildren some of the information I learned. Today as I went through my day I was able to walk more full of the Spirit because of some of the things David taught. I truly felt I defeated some temptation because of things I learned over the last four weeks. It is amazing what happens when you are available.
As we were learning from David I thought of several families who needed to be available. As their pastor I wondered what they were doing on Sunday evening from 6:00 until 7:00. Were they taking a nap? Were they just watching something on TV that did not add to their spiritual life? Were they even giving thought to what they might do to grow in the Lord? Were they struggling with their Christian life? Were they and their family being defeated by sin?
What might have happened if they had been available?
If you struggle with the Christian life it may be you have not been available. It is important that you attend church. It is important that you read your Bible. It is important that you pray. It is important that you have a small group. I very sincerely want to encourage you to be available to spiritual growth opportunities.