Sermon Reflections from Transform the World | Damon Hopkins | August 27, 2023
This Sunday Damon embarked on part 2 of the sermon he started last week. He reminded us that the first step is to take in from God. Be that going to church, from Christian radio, podcasts, or your own study, we need to avail ourselves of hearing the Word and encountering God. When we do, the next step is to take it and share it. Our love for God is energized by encounters with Him. We are to use opportunities within the week, within our sphere of influence to share about Him. God commands us to do this in Matthew 28:19-20 “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Part 2 of this process is to make the sharing real. We are not perfect for sure, as we are all sinners saved by grace, but our sharing should be authentic and genuine to the core. We should seek to reflect Jesus in our lives then the hearer or seer will see that our walk with Jesus reflects our talk about Jesus. Damon had several examples of this from his life and pointed out to us that humility is required. One needs to be quick to admit their inconsistencies and praise God for His forgiveness and righteousness that covers our sin. Admitting our own constant need for the Savior requires humility. Although humility is difficult, scripture teaches us that it has great benefits. It is the high calling of all Christians and helps us reflect our Lord and Savior to the world.
Benefits of humility: Rest for our souls, Matthew 11:29
Salvation as our crown, Psalm149:4
Wisdom, Proverbs 11:2
Guidance and His teaching, Psalm 25:9
Grace, God’s unmerited favor, Isaiah 66:2b
Exaltation from God, Matthew 18:4, Matthew 23:12
So when Damon encourages us to be real, vulnerable and open in our sharing, it is the attitude God desires. To be like Jesus we need humility in our walk with Him. Our lives are constantly being transformed by the power of the Holy Spirit that dwells within us. We need to listen, accept and respond with boldness so we may show Christ to our needy world.
If we seek to show Christ in our lives, we will see a growth in the fruit provided by the Holy Spirit. Check yourself, think back and reflect on how you have changed in regard to the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in your life.
Galatians 5:22-23 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.’ How have you seen growth in the fruits of the Spirit in your life? Are you more forgiving, patient, faithful?
Do you allow the Holy Spirit to use you to comfort others? 2 Corinthians 1:4-5 “ who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ.”
How about your desire to talk to others about Christ? Do you feel His boldness spurring and engaging you in conversations that before you would have wanted to avoid? Acts 1:8 “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
Scripture also speaks of a hope that comes from His indwelling Holy Spirit. Romans 15:3 “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Are you feeling this, are you more hopeful in Christ and willing to share that hope of a solid affirmed future with others? Do experience peace when you know the situation is desperate but God gives you peace and joy? That is the work of the Holy Spirit in your life!
How about your time with others at work or church? Do you seek unity of Spirit or demand your own way? Ephesians 4:3 “Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.
The Holy Spirit imparts gifts to every believer. Think about your gifts and ask yourself- am I allowing God to use them within me? 1 Corinthians 12:1, 4-6,7-11 Now about the gifts of the Spirit, brothers and sisters, I do not want you to be uninformed. 4 There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. 5 There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. 6 There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work. 7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8 To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10 to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.
There is much to ponder and evaluate this week. If we are to reflect Christ in our lives we need to be humble and use the gifts God imparts to us through His Holy Spirit.
Thanks Damon for your encouragement to dynamically seek to live for Jesus in both word and deeds. It requires intentional living for Him! Thankfully, those He calls he equips! (Hebrews 13:21 and 2 Timothy 2:17)
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A collection of thoughts from our community