HOW TO HAVE POWERFUL PRAYERS Did you know that there was a disciple named…
5. How to Worship God
12. Nothing Wasted
29. Know Your Enemy
God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure.
You are not a mistake. You are not here by coincidence. You are here because God loves you and wants to know you. God wanted you in His family, so He made it possible through Jesus. You are more important than just something God created; He has made you His son or daughter.
As Jesus was walking along, he saw a man who had been blind from birth. “Rabbi,” his disciples asked him, “Why was this man born blind? Was it because of his own sins or his parents’ sins?”
“It was not because of his sins or his parents’ sins,” Jesus answered. “This happened so the power of God could be seen in him.
Jesus’ disciples had a question that we often ask ourselves. What happened here? Who’s fault is it? If everything happens for a reason, was it his parent’s fault or his sin? Jesus sets everyone straight, so this is no longer a question. It wasn’t the sins of the parents or man that made him blind. Not everything happens for a reason, but it can happen for a PURPOSE. God can take anything and use it for His good. He wants to take your pain and story if you’re willing to surrender to him. God can use what has happened to you for His purpose. Not everything happens for a reason, but it can happen for a purpose.
We know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.
God can use anything for his glory and purpose. God can take even your pain and use it to bring you closer to Him. He can also use your pain story to bring others closer to Him.
The Lord has made everything for his own purposes
The theme for 2022 is, “Don’t waste your pain.” We won’t let the enemy have his way with the terrible things we’ve gone through. We’re going to watch God take what the enemy meant for harm, and we’re going to use it for good.
John 9:3-7 NLT
“It was not because of his sins or his parents’ sins,” Jesus answered. “This happened so the power of God could be seen in him. We must quickly carry out the tasks assigned us by the one who sent us. The night is coming, and then no one can work. But while I am here in the world, I am the light of the world.”
Then he spit on the ground, made mud with the saliva, and spread the mud over the blind man’s eyes. He told him, “Go wash yourself in the pool of Siloam” (Siloam means “sent”). So the man went and washed and came back seeing!
Think about how bizarre and weird it is that Jesus spits in the mud and puts it on a blind man’s face during this miracle. Can we talk about this for a second? Jesus doesn’t do this in any other miracles, only this one. Why is that? Do you think God needs magic spit or magic mud to heal people? No, of course not. He raised Lazarus from the dead by talking to him. He didn’t have to do it this way, so it makes us wonder what the bigger purpose was.
Purpose #1: You were made to worship God.
You were created to be loved by God
Loving God back is called worship.
You were made to worship God. He made you for His pleasure because He loves you. But when you love God back, that’s called worship. He wants you to love Him and put your trust in Him. God desires you to have a strong, secure relationship with Him that you know He’s got you no matter what happens in your life.
Have you ever thought about worship as loving God back? Often we think of worship as the time when we are singing together. Singing is part of our worship time, but it isn’t all of it. When we put our heart, effort, and time into focusing on God, we worship Him. When you take the time to read this blog to learn more about Him, that is worship. When you take time to watch online services or drive to attend service, that is worship. When you check in with a friend and pray for them, that is worship. When you give your tithe to God, that is worship, too. Worship is more than just singing; it starts in your heart and the sacrifices you make to be closer to God.
Here’s what makes the story of the blind man in John 9 different. As Jesus was walking down the road, his disciples pointed out the man and asked why he was blind. Then, man did not cry out and ask for healing. We know that he was begging on the side of the road and something about his struggle caused Jesus’ disciples to ask why this was happening to him. This guy’s not asking Jesus to heal him. Instead, Jesus is asking the man if he wants to be healed.
Often your friends might tell you that they don’t have faith. Maybe they even will say that they lost their faith. But here’s the thing, technically, that’s not possible. It’s not possible for you to not have faith, nor is it possible to lose your faith. Do you know why? Because God says everybody has a measure of faith. Everybody has faith. The question is not IF you have faith or not; the question is, in WHOM do you put your faith? Maybe you are putting your faith in money. Perhaps you’re using money to give yourself a sense of identity and create the person you want to be. Maybe you’re using money to control other people or to self-medicate by making yourself feel better.
Matthew 6:24 NLT
You cannot serve God and be enslaved to money.
Jesus tells us in Matthew 6:24 that money will always be the greatest competitor for our heart. Another way of saying this is; money and worship will always be a battle. If you want to know if money is where you place your security, check your bank account. If it causes you anxiety or worry because you don’t see how it will provide for you, then you are not looking to the ONE who provides. This can be said for relationships, too. You will be disappointed if you want to put your faith and trust in a relationship. Who you sacrifice for and put your faith in is who you worship. There’s only one relationship you can worship that will never let you down, and His name is Jesus.
Faith is trusting God in action.
Your worship is the primary development of your relationship with God. You cannot worship God without trust. When you take something you would typically worship and redirect that trust toward God, you grow closer to Him. Choosing Him when you usually choose something else is a way you love Him back.
Jesus’ disciples asked Him about the man that was blind and whose fault it was that made him that way. Not only did Jesus set the record straight that it wasn’t anyone’s fault, but He also chose to do a miracle unlike any that He had done before. Jesus spits on the ground. Not just a little spit, enough to make mud out of His saliva and dirt. After making spit-filled mud, he put it on the blind man’s eyes. The man might have thought, “I didn’t sign up for this miracle. It wasn’t my idea to have the rabbi rub dirt and spit on my face.” Here’s the big difference between this miracle and others: this is the only time the person didn’t go to Jesus to ask for healing. Jesus went to him! Other times people were healed and acted on their faith by asking Jesus for the healing. But this time, Jesus invites the guy to get healed. What the man is missing is a demonstration of faith. Jesus knows that miracles exist. Miracles are done by a heavenly Father to help his kids trust Him.
God wants you to have a breakthrough in your life. He doesn’t take any joy in seeing you suffer. He wants you to have a breakthrough. He wants to deliver you from your financial issues. He wants to heal your heartbreak. Those things you’re praying for are important to God because they’re important to you. He loves you. If you can trust him and put your faith in action, you are setting yourself up for a miracle in your life. But if you continue to hold on to the things that are giving you the security in your life that you’re not getting from Him, I can’t promise that God will come through like that. Here’s the thing, God wants you to show Him that you trust Him. When Jesus looks at the blind man, He doesn’t want him to wipe off the mud. He wants him to walk all the way to the well. Jesus knows that people will look at him funny for having mud on his face; it will feel gross and uncomfortable. The man does it, and what happens? On the other side of his demonstration of trust, he gets healed! Not only can he see, but now he has a relationship with Jesus that has changed his whole life.
Some of us go to God wanting a miracle, but you’ve got to understand that God’s more eager to do a miracle in your life. When you show Him that you trust Him, you draw closer to Him. That’s how our relationship with God works. Trust is the foundation of all relationships. So why would it be different with your Father?
Worship is not a choice.
Who you worship is your only choice.
The question is not if you’re going into worship or not; you don’t have a choice. The choice is only who or what you’re going to worship. You’re a worshiper. You’re made in the image of God. You’re a worshiper, meaning you can’t stop worshiping even if you tried. There’s no light switch where you switch on and off worship mode. The very existence of you as a human being, made in the image of God, is one constant being of worship.
What are you worshiping? Some of you are worshiping your job. Some of you are worshiping that girl that you’re trying to get her attention. Some of you are worshiping money. Who or what are you putting your faith in? If you build your trust in God, you will draw closer to Him, and you will have a life full of purpose. God wants you. How much do you want him? How much do you want to love him back? That’s what worship is—loving God back.
1 John 4:19
We love each other because he loved us first.
The only reason we love is because He first loved us. That’s why we love him. If you know you’re lost, you’re heading in the wrong direction. You need a Savior. You need God to bring you into His family. That’s only possible through Jesus. He says, “I’m the WAY, the TRUTH, and the LIFE, and nobody comes to the Father, except through me.” Today, you can choose the one that first loved you. Are you ready to love Him back?