Sunday, May 24, 2009

GREAT Input!

Today, Chad continued to talk about “what’s so great about Jesus.” It can hardly be fully explained in a sermon series because what’s so great about Jesus is the fact that there is SO MUCH that you just can’t explain it all!! He’s always so fresh and new! Every breath and every new day and experience is something great about Jesus. Like Chad said, Jesus isn’t contained in the pages of His Word; and for that matter, neither is the enemy. As explained in the last two blogs, both our ally and our adversary are very real. Though, like one of the gals on the worship team said today, we are bigger than the enemy because God is bigger than the enemy. And since the Holy Spirit is inside us, we already have the victory over Satan. We just have to believe that and claim the power and authority given to us by Christ!

Indeed, that’s the “great” part. That’s the stuff we’re supposed to be carrying in our heart and being filled with. Chad talked about Proverbs 4:23 in which Solomon tells us to guard our heart because it’s the wellspring of life. Chad said that the heart is a place of both input and output. The kind of things that get poured into your heart are the things that are going to spill out of your heart. Therefore, we must certainly guard it because not all that gets poured in are things that we want to pour out. We need to reject that garbage and take out the trash whenever the bad things want to pour themselves into us. Chad illustrated it as a vacuum cleaner. He mentioned that his kids are always seeking to absorb and suck in good input. He said those things are significance, security, acceptance, love, and praise. They are essential needs of every human being. If we aren’t getting enough of that (or are getting the opposite of that) our heart can get very messy. We can even get to the point where we close it off so that it doesn’t take anything else in; whether good or bad. Sure, you seal yourself off from negative stuff, but you also eliminate the possibility of accepting any good stuff.

Once again, Chad featured a testimony from . A lady named Priscilla Nicoara talked about the kind of “input” that got poured into her heart as a child. Her mother never wanted her (and had had several abortions prior to her even being born). She said she was always reminded by her mother that she was never really wanted. She didn’t have any of those crucial elements of need in her life; no love, praise, significance, security, or acceptance. The only place she felt she had that was from her father who absolutely loved her. Then, when she was a teen, he died unexpectedly. It devastated her and she felt all alone. It wasn’t until a man invited her to know Jesus that she discovered just how loved, accepted, and wanted she was. She explained how she went from feeling like garbage to feeling like a princess when she realized that she was God’s child; that He adopted her into His family, loves her, and chose her. Amen!!

Priscilla learned to empty her heart of the garbage that was brought in and allowed Jesus to meet her deepest needs and fill her heart with good things. Isn’t that great?! Yes, it’s great - it’s Jesus!!

We are going to have a lot going in and out of hearts during our lifetime. So, we must be alert! We need to take our thoughts captive (2 Corinthians 10:5) renew our minds (Romans 12:2) and think on good things (Philippians 4:8). If bad input tries to get in (or if it’s already there) we need to reject it! We need to pour it out! We don’t want to be filled with that! It’s like if you have an empty stomach and you have the choice between drinking something good or drinking poison. Fill up on what is good. Drink that! Don’t drink poison!! Pour it out! Don’t accept it! Or, if you have, puke it out (sorry, don’t know how else to say it). ;) You can’t be filled with good things if you are contaminating your tank with the bad. Empty it out so you can be filled with real fuel!

Grace and peace to all of you!! I pray that you will be emptied of and guarded against bad input. I pray that you will be filled with God’s good and glorious outpouring of input into your heart and that it will spill out to others!! Jesus,….GREAT!! “Great” input!! God bless you!!

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