This is a message I spoke at Thrive and 19 North. In it, I challenge you to be intentional about making a difference in the lives of the homeless, needy, addicted, and abused. My hope is that this message will cause you to act. After listening to it, let me know if there is anything I can do to help you! Enjoy:
How to make the Most of Your Summer: Come and See to Come and Die
A scripture that we don’t take serious enough:
31 “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy[c] angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. 32 All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. 33 And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. 34 Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; 36 I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’ 37 “Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? 38 When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? 39 Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You? 40 And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me. -Matthew 25:31-39
Jesus took a disciples on a journey from come and see to come and die.
In the beginning, walking with God is all about you, as you mature, walking with God becomes all about others.
***Some of you NEED TO CROSS THE THRESHOLD… it’s still about you – it’s time to MATURE!
In your Teens and twenties, get as many come and see experiences as you can!
- * Check out homeless shelters, urban settings, jails, mentoring, etc.
- * Find out what God is calling you to do something about!
- **some of you will go to a homeless shelter and not get fired up at all, some of you will want to help with human trafficking!
- * Come and die – you’ll find your cause and give your life to it!
- * What can you experience this summer that will change your life forever
Jesus commanded us to: Feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, shelter the stranger, clothe the naked, visit the sick, and visit those in prison.
4 Excuses We use Why We Don’t Take this Seriously:
Margin – We don’t have time
Ignorance – We just don’t know what to do or what the need is
Selfishness – We are worried about our needs and our lives only
Insecurity – We don’t think we have what it takes to make a difference
Ignorance: We just don’t know what to do or what the need is
The Solution: Exposure and Proximity
What I have Learned about the Homeless: They are just like you!
You’ll never get it -> If you’re not exposed!
Jesus was exposed to people who committed adultery, who had diseases that nobody would go near them, corrupt leaders, etc.
What if he just stayed in the temple? The 4 walls of the church!
What are you exposing yourself to?
**We all want to change the world, but we don’t want to change the world we live in! The world God has called you to change is all around you everyday!
“Most of life is not lived not globally, but very locally.” -Steven Garber
As leaders,we think our neighbors should know us, but do we know our neighbors?
To know these issues, we have to expose ourselves to what is happening in the world. Yes, you can get exposure by watching a documentary, watching the news, or reading about an issue, however, until you get up close to an issue, you’ll never truly know it.
To know it, you must get in proximity with it. This is why it’s important to volunteer with different organizations that are taking on these different issues. Once you expose yourself to several issues, you’ll learn what issues matter the most to you. Until you see an issue up close, you’ll never truly know.
Margin: I don’t Have Enough Time
Making Time for the Poor:
Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him and departed, leaving him half dead. Now by chance a priest was going down that road, and when he saw him he passed by on the other side. So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion. He went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he set him on his own animal and brought him to an inn and took care of him. -Luke 10:30-37
*The people who make a difference are the people who are constantly looking for opportunities to make a difference.
So much of Jesus ministry occurred when he was passing through . . . OCCUPY ALL STREETS!
***Write down what you do every 15 minutes. . .
Selfishness: They can’t do anything for us in return
The more you grow in your relationship with God, the less it’s about you. You recognize what God has done for you and in return you give your life to serve God and others . . . and it’s not a sacrifice, it’s a joy.
“If you don’t love the poor, you don’t know what God’s done for you.” -Tim Keller
Romans 5:8 says, “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
He said also to the man who had invited him, “When you give a dinner or a banquet, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, lest they also invite you in return and you be repaid. But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just.” Luke 14:12-14 ESV
*Jesus said we should be concerned more about the people who can’t repay us than the people who can. . .
Philippians 2:3 Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. 4 Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.
How do you treat people who can do nothing for you?
Insecurity – We don’t think what is in our hand is enough.
**I’m not good enough, talented enough, charismatic enough, know enough scripture, etc.
Exodus 4:2: 2 Then the Lord said to him, “What is that in your hand?”“A staff,” he replied.
**You have time, you have gifts, and a burden to make a difference.
You won’t discover what’s in your hand until you start to serve . . . then your gifts, etc. will come out . . . Come and see, then go and serve, the come and die!
3 People Coming and Seeing to Coming and Dying
* Charles Chapman – College Freshman
* John Jackson – Keep Yinz Warm – Started a homeless outreach when he was 12
* Lisa DiFalco – Raised $8,000 for Light of Life in one day
WHY NOT YOU?
**What are you going to do with the time, unselfishness, security, and proximity you’ll have this summer?
*There are people on the other side of your come and see experience . . . You’re called to help someone, and not twenty years from now… NOW!
At the end of your life:
34 Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; 36 I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me
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