Sunday, March 15, 2020

Worship, Sunday March 15th, 2020

Mighty Wind United Methodist Church

 

I Smile

https://youtu.be/Z8SPwT3nQZ8

 

I’ll Find You

https://youtu.be/Jv8IqJm6q7w

 

I Can Only Imagine

https://youtu.be/N_lrrq_opng

 

Prayer – Psalm 95

Psalm 9595:1 O come, let us sing to the LORD; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!95:2 Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!95:3 For the LORD is a great God, and a great King above all gods.95:4 In his hand are the depths of the earth; the heights of the mountains are his also.95:5 The sea is his, for he made it, and the dry land, which his hands have formed.95:6 O come, let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before the LORD, our Maker!95:7 For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand. O that today you would listen to his voice!95:8 Do not harden your hearts, as at Meribah, as on the day at Massah in the wilderness,95:9 when your ancestors tested me, and put me to the proof, though they had seen my work.95:10 For forty years I loathed that generation and said, "They are a people whose hearts go astray, and they do not regard my ways."95:11 Therefore in my anger I swore, "They shall not enter my rest."

Scripture Reading – Romans 5:1-11

Scripture Reading – John 4:5-42

The Message:

Mighty Wind UMC

Why Following Jesus is So _______________ Hard.

What the Faith?

Romans 5:1-115:1 Therefore, since we are justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,5:2 through whom we have obtained access to this grace in which we stand; and we boast in our hope of sharing the glory of God.5:3 And not only that, but we also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance,5:4 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope,5:5 and hope does not disappoint us, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.5:6 For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.5:7 Indeed, rarely will anyone die for a righteous person--though perhaps for a good person someone might actually dare to die.5:8 But God proves his love for us in that while we still were sinners Christ died for us.5:9 Much more surely then, now that we have been justified by his blood, will we be saved through him from the wrath of God.5:10 For if while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of his Son, much more surely, having been reconciled, will we be saved by his life.5:11 But more than that, we even boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.John 4:5-424:5 So he came to a Samaritan city called Sychar, near the plot of ground that Jacob had given to his son Joseph.4:6 Jacob's well was there, and Jesus, tired out by his journey, was sitting by the well. It was about noon.4:7 A Samaritan woman came to draw water, and Jesus said to her, "Give me a drink."4:8 (His disciples had gone to the city to buy food.)4:9 The Samaritan woman said to him, "How is it that you, a Jew, ask a drink of me, a woman of Samaria?" (Jews do not share things in common with Samaritans.)4:10 Jesus answered her, "If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, 'Give me a drink,' you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water."4:11 The woman said to him, "Sir, you have no bucket, and the well is deep. Where do you get that living water?4:12 Are you greater than our ancestor Jacob, who gave us the well, and with his sons and his flocks drank from it?"4:13 Jesus said to her, "Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again,4:14 but those who drink of the water that I will give them will never be thirsty. The water that I will give will become in them a spring of water gushing up to eternal life."4:15 The woman said to him, "Sir, give me this water, so that I may never be thirsty or have to keep coming here to draw water."4:16 Jesus said to her, "Go, call your husband, and come back."4:17 The woman answered him, "I have no husband." Jesus said to her, "You are right in saying, 'I have no husband';4:18 for you have had five husbands, and the one you have now is not your husband. What you have said is true!"4:19 The woman said to him, "Sir, I see that you are a prophet.4:20 Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you say that the place where people must worship is in Jerusalem."4:21 Jesus said to her, "Woman, believe me, the hour is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem.4:22 You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews.4:23 But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father seeks such as these to worship him.4:24 God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth."4:25 The woman said to him, "I know that Messiah is coming" (who is called Christ). "When he comes, he will proclaim all things to us."4:26 Jesus said to her, "I am he, the one who is speaking to you."4:27 Just then his disciples came. They were astonished that he was speaking with a woman, but no one said, "What do you want?" or, "Why are you speaking with her?"4:28 Then the woman left her water jar and went back to the city. She said to the people,4:29 "Come and see a man who told me everything I have ever done! He cannot be the Messiah, can he?"4:30 They left the city and were on their way to him.4:31 Meanwhile the disciples were urging him, "Rabbi, eat something."4:32 But he said to them, "I have food to eat that you do not know about."4:33 So the disciples said to one another, "Surely no one has brought him something to eat?"4:34 Jesus said to them, "My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to complete his work.4:35 Do you not say, 'Four months more, then comes the harvest'? But I tell you, look around you, and see how the fields are ripe for harvesting.4:36 The reaper is already receiving wages and is gathering fruit for eternal life, so that sower and reaper may rejoice together.4:37 For here the saying holds true, 'One sows and another reaps.'4:38 I sent you to reap that for which you did not labor. Others have labored, and you have entered into their labor."4:39 Many Samaritans from that city believed in him because of the woman's testimony, "He told me everything I have ever done."4:40 So when the Samaritans came to him, they asked him to stay with them; and he stayed there two days.4:41 And many more believed because of his word.4:42 They said to the woman, "It is no longer because of what you said that we believe, for we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this is truly the Savior of the world."

Having Faith Does Not Protect Us…

If it doesn’t protect us, then why do we believe?

 

We are in the final lesson in our series, “Why Following Jesus Can Be So Damn Hard.”

Our final lesson is about Faith.

Probably one of the most quoted verses of scripture is Hebrews 11:1- Now Faith is the substance of things hoped for, and the evidence of things not seen. It is here, where we have to begin to interrogate having faith, and what it means to have faith in a world that is complex and constantly changing.

I’ve often said, “Having faith is easy when things are good. When the money is flowing, when we have everything we need, and it seems as if there isn’t a care in the world.

But sometimes having faith can be hard:

When there are travel bans, and people are contained and quarantined

When we don’t know what’s next

When we are awaiting news of a loved one,

When we ourselves are sick or hurting.

It may leave us wondering where God is,

And if we have been forgotten.

Faith-

Webster’s Dictionary defines faith as:

Definition of faith

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : allegiance to duty or a person : loyalty lost faith in the company's president

b(1) : fidelity to one's promises

(2): sincerity of intentions acted in good faith

2a (1) : belief and trust in and loyalty to God

(2) : belief in the traditional doctrines of a religion

b (1) : firm belief in something for which there is no proof clinging to the faith that her missing son would one day return

(2): complete trust

3: something that is believed especially with strong conviction especially : a system of religious beliefs the Protestant faith

There’s a response in some churches, when someone is asked how they are doing they say, “Blessed and highly favored.” Rarely does the person say, “lacking faith and full of questions.”

Though this is rarely a response from followers of Christ, I think “lacking faith and full of questions,” is a response that is real, especially for the day and time that we live in.

It was even true for the disciples.

 

In Matthew chapter 17, the disciples attempt to cast out a demon and are unable to do so, even though Jesus has given them the power. Jesus rebukes the boy and he is healed from that moment. Afterwards, the disciples ask Jesus privately why they were unable to cast the demon out, to which he responds, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you."

The phrase doubting Thomas, is actually referencing Thomas, who in his unbelief says, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”

Lack of faith, or unbelief, is not new. It is not new for us, it was not new for the disciples, and it won’t be new for generations to come.

Our scripture readings today give us insight into faith. Paul reminds us that suffering produces character, charter produces endurance, and endurance produces hope, and this hope that comes from God, does not disappoint us.

Perhaps you’re thinking, “There are plenty of times when I have had hope, and believed, and I have been disappointed.”

If you found yourself thinking this, again you are not alone. In the telling of Jesus casting the demon from the boy in Mark 9, Jesus tells the father, all things can be done for the one who is able, and the father says, “I believe, help my unbelief.”

The father cries out on behalf of his son, and Jesus cries out on behalf of each of us. The scripture reading from Romans reminds us that God, sends his son Jesus to die for us, and Jesus in his final moments hanging on a cross that we might all be redeemed and one day share in heaven with him says cries out to God with the words, “Eli Eli Lama Sabachthani. The Hebrew form, as Eloi, Eloi, etc., is the Syro-Chaldaic (the common language in use by the Jews in the time of Christ) of the first words of the twenty-second Psalm; they mean "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me".

Some theologians have argued, that in this moment of distress, Jesus found his faith waning. Though we don’t know this to be true, we do know that in the midst of his darkest hour, when he is hanging on the cross that we might have eternal life, he feels forsaken.

In our faith, we must remember that we are not forsaken. Though we may not understand the reasons of any or all of what is happening in our lives, we must never forget that God has not forgotten us.

It’s a reminder that was served up to the woman at the well when she met Jesus, a stranger.

A stranger that spoke to her a Samaritan woman with a past.

Jesus welcomes her into conversation, but it’s not just conversation that she’s welcomed into, it is the transforming life of Christ that she is welcomed into.

Jesus doesn’t shun her but lets her know that the prophesies of old are true.

The Messiah has come.

We don’t know how her life was transformed, but we know that she and the people in her community

are transformed, and that none of them are the same.

In this season as we journey closer to the cross with Christ. We can take comfort in knowing that especially when we are in those moments when we feel forsaken or forgotten, the Lord will not forsake us. God is there to lead us every step of the way if only we allow it and will place people in our paths to remind us of this when we find our faith waning.

Our ancestors knew it would be difficult, Jesus knew it would be difficult, because we are not of the world.

In John 17, Jesus prays for us, praying,

“16 They do not belong to the world, just as I do not belong to the world. 17 Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. 18 As you have sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. 19 And for their sakes I sanctify myself, so that they also may be sanctified in truth.

20 “I ask not only on behalf of these, but also on behalf of those who will believe in me through their word, 21 that they may all be one. As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us,[f] so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 The glory that you have given me I have given them, so that they may be one, as we are one, 23 I in them and you in me, that they may become completely one, so that the world may know that you have sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. 24 Father, I desire that those also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory, which you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world.

25 “Righteous Father, the world does not know you, but I know you; and these know that you have sent me. 26 I made your name known to them, and I will make it known, so that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.”

 

Being a follower of Christ will be hard. Having faith at times will be difficult. Being a follower of Christ at times will be difficult.

However, no one said being a follower of Christ would be easy, but it will definitely be worth it.

 

Song- God Only Knows

https://youtu.be/Q5cPQg3oq-o

 

Questions for Reflection:

1. What is one area in your life where you have been struggling in your faith?

2. Often, when we are in the midst of a faith crisis, we feel like no one else has been through what we are going through. What is a passage of scripture, and some words of encouragement you can use to encourage someone that is struggling in their faith?

3. When you became a follower of Christ, did you think it would make life easier? Why, or why not?

 
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Mighty Wind United Methodist Church

  • First Flight Middle School
    109 Veteran's Drive
    Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina 27948
    Mailing Address
    P.O. Box 1793
    Nags Head, North Carolina 27959
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