Revival and Its Arch Nemesis the “Selfie”

blog selfies

 

I am praying for revival in the Carbon Valley Area of Colorado…. Why not today?  What are we waiting for?  Are we waiting for God?  Are you waiting for someone else?  What am I waiting for?

“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” (Edmund Burke)

We read about revival.  We have studied about revival.  But sadly to say I have never seen or experienced a city wide or global revival.  I have read in history about the great revivals of our world.  Thousands coming to Christ, all because one person decided to stand up, to live right, and to be proactive with spreading the good news of Christ.  All it takes is one!  But this will never happen…why?  Because we do not think it can happen.  Well unless we change our mind!  Unless we change our mindset.  Unless we change the way we live, pray, study, and evangelize.

Really, I do not think people pray for revival and do not seek for revival?  Why?  Because they really do not want revival.  They do not want to give up on the things that please them.  They enjoy their pleasures and sins too much to allow Christ to influence their lives!  This must stop!  As a pastor I see the many faces of people that call themselves Christians.  As I have opportunities to preach all over the US and even some in the world, many men, women, and children are consumed with…themselves.

We live in a very narcissistic society.  We are more worried than ever before in history about our approval rate among peers.  The world is obsessed with themselves!  “Selfies” are wreaking havoc on society.  I even read this last week, that a selfie was the cause of a plane crash that killed a few people.  Companies are maximizing profits of our narcissistic mindset by introducing the “selfie stick.”  It is a stick that you attach to your phone or camera that extends far out so that you have a better ability to take pictures of none other than yourself.  These selfies are being plastered all over social media in droves.  Young people and old people alike are falling to this selfie generation.  Even worse is that they do not even understand what they are encouraging.  What they are teaching others, what they are teaching their children, and what they are teaching future generations.   Is a selfie inherently wrong?  No, of course not!  But is an obsession with it wrong?

I have had to ask myself…why should I or why would I post a selfie?  I have spent some time on social media as I see a flood of these coming across my screen.  One common factor in all of them,  the comments the people receive for posting them to social media.  This self obsession/narcissism is like a drug.  If I have people tell me how cute, beautiful, or handsome I am, that cheers me up and makes me feel good inside! We thrive off of the many likes that we get and all the comments that people tell us.  Selfies are a common day drug to fuel narcissism.

“Selfies are a common day drug to fuel narcissism.”

You might asking yourself now, is he going off on a tangent?  I thought we were talking about revival.  I promise you we are still very much on the same topic.  See, ultimately revival is not happening because we are consumed with one thing…self.   We have a hard time wanting revival because we cannot see past ourselves. We cannot see the greater righteousness and holiness of God.  We see more of ourselves in view than we see how great our God is.  John 3:30, says, “He must increase, but I must decrease.”  This is a mindset.  This is the act of living intentionally to be like Christ.  It is on purpose.  It is easy to be consumed with ones self.  It is hard to be consumed with Christ. 

Ultimately, Christ wants us to be consumed with Him.  He wants us to be focused on Him.  He wants us to have accurate “picture”, if you will, of Him.  The more we know Christ, the less we will be consumed with ourselves.  Narcissism will fade away, because we see God in His great glory.  Psalm 23, a very familiar passage, gives us good insight of a godly focus.

Psalm 23

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
    He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
    He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
    for his name’s sake.

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
    I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
    your rod and your staff,
    they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me
    in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
    my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
    all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
    forever.

If you notice the very first verse it says if the Lord is shepherd. If He is your sustainer, guide, protector, and master;  then you will not be wanting of anything.  You will not be looking for extracurricular approval of man.  When we allow God to be our focus, we then are led beside still waters.  God restores or revives the Christian!   King David after falling in his sin with Bathsheba wrote this Psalm.

 Psalm 51

Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being,
    and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart.
Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
    wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
Let me hear joy and gladness;
    let the bones that you have broken rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins,
    and blot out all my iniquities.
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
    and renew a right spirit within me.
11 Cast me not away from your presence,
    and take not your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
    and uphold me with a willing spirit.

Here David, because of his sin, was focused on himself.  It was not until David realized, in verse 10, that he could experience the joy of Salvation if he repented of his selfish ways.  Joy is a gift.  It is one of the fruits of the Spirit that God gives to those who keep Christ at the center. Christians today sometimes seem to be the gloomiest people I know.  They have no real joy. They fake happiness, and they have no true joy in their life, because they are saturated with circumstances and the glorification of self rather than the Spirit.

We make more problems as Christians than we do solve them.  Our agendas on philosophy and movements are completely focused on who gets the lime light. Very rarely does God ever that light.  We worship men more than God.  We worship man’s approval more than we do God.  We no longer keep the main thing the main thing.

The recipe for revival is rather a simple one, but it is a monumental choice for one person to get rid of self.  They need to stop being self centered and start being God Focused.  Is the “selfie” really the arch nemesis of revival?  No, but the concept of the narcissism behind it is. We do not see revival and we will not see revival until we can admit and change our self centered, self pleasing lifestyle.  Revival does not start with a multitude of people. Revival spreads when people decide that they are no longer worthy in the sight of God.  Isaiah 6:8 gives a great example of Isaiah seeing himself for who he really was.

Isaiah 6:8 “And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Then I said, “Here I am! Send me.”  The several verses before that showed Isaiah seeing the true glory and holiness of God.  It was only then that Isaiah really realized his position in Christ.  This is when true revival happened.  It was not in a church, it was not in a multitude of people, it was not at a conference, it was not in a revival meeting.  It was an individual moment in Isaiah’s life that he realized he was not worthy.  Then and only then can we experience true revival.  Isaiah was a great prophet then used by God to see many mighty things.  It was through Isaiah that he saw many of the prophecies of Christ the Messiah been given.  He did not wait for anyone to have true revival.  He was not waiting for a special circumstance.

I am praying for revival in the Carbon Valley area of Colorado.  Their are people in the Firestone, Frederick, Dacono, and Erie areas that need the Lord.  If we stay so consumed with ourselves we will forget why God has us here.  I am praying that God uses me.  I am praying that God uses Carbon Valley Bible Church. I am praying that I have the mindset of revival in myself first!  I am praying that my own revival will spread to my church.  I am praying that the church’s sincerity in serving will spread to the city and from their spread to the entire Carbon Valley Area. I am praying for Christians to step up and be Christi like.   I am praying that they have deep consuming passion for God.  I am praying that together we can reach the many depths and areas of the Carbon Valley area.  I am praying that souls are saved.  I am praying that people are discipled.  I am praying for revival.

Why can’t revival happen?  Why can’t we see great things from God?  It is not His fault. He is waiting….

 

For more information on Carbon Valley Bible Church please go to cvbiblechurch.com or call 303-736-9959.

We have ministries for ALL ages.

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Colorado Flood Victims: FEMA support running Out

It has now been a couple of weeks, but there are literally hundreds if not thousands of people still dealing with all of the issues. For those of us who have not been directly impacted with the floods in our own house, it is often that we forget. If you can help financially please do so here, if you cannot but are able to share this link, we ask that you do that. Thanks so much! http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/help-relieve-the-colorado-flood-victims/x/4596822

Molly Hendrickson

LYONS, Colo. – You’d never know it looking at the outside of her Lyons home, but Crysty McCain and her kids are running out of places to go.

“It’s unlivable.  They gave me $1,574 and when that’s gone, that’s it,” McCain said.

Their water has ecoli in it and their gas and electricity is still shut off.  The problem is all of the FEMA approved hotels in nearby Longmont are full.

“I even had one FEMA lady say on the phone, well you might have to live out of your car,” McCain said.

FEMA has allotted $30 million in housing assistance for flood victims.  Representatives told 7NEWS they’re continually working with counties to find more housing solutions but in the meantime evacuees with no place to go should stay in the shelters.

For people like Bobby and Rene Young, that’s a short-term solution to a long-term problem.

“The rental assistance is not quite as much as what the landlords are asking for in most cases,” Young said.

The Youngs lost their home in the flood.  FEMA has given them $1,000 a month in rental assistance, but finding a month to month rental within that budget is proving to be a challenge.

“That seems a little rough,” Young said.

Just when the Young’s thought they’d begin settling down, like so many others in Lyons, they’re starting over.

“I feel grateful because I’m not homeless, but in the long term, we are,” Young said.

Crysty McCain and her kids have a house still, but don’t know how long it’ll be until they can call it a home again.

“They’re worried we’re never going to come back ever,” McCain said.

For more information on Carbon Valley Bible Church please go to cvbiblechurch.com or call 303-736-9959

Find our church on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Firestone-Baptist-Church/203757890870

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People Are Reaching Out, We need Your Help!

People are reaching out to us for help, would you consider giving? We have had a significant amount of displaced people from around the community. However, we can only help them a little. These financial gifts will be a great blessing to them.

Help Relieve the Colorado Flood Victims by Financially giving. All proceeds will go 100% to the victims! Click here for more details. ‪#‎Coloflood‬, ‪#‎longmontflood‬

http://www.firestonebaptist.com/floodfund.htm

Or

http://igg.me/at/coloradofloodvictims/x/4596822

If you cannot give financially please share this link.

 

Short Summary

Colorado emergency management officials have released an initial estimate that says the ongoing flooding has damaged or destroyed nearly 19,000 homes.

The Colorado Office of Emergency Management estimated Sunday on its website that 17,494 homes have been damaged and 1,502 destroyed.

In addition, 11,700 people have been evacuated and a total of 1,253 people are unaccounted for.

What We Need & What You Get

Our goal is to get $500,000.00 to go 100% to the victims of these Colorado floods.  These areas include Weld, Boulder, and Larimer Counties.

Firestone Baptist Church is located right in the heart of Weld County of which is central to Firestone, Frederick, Dacono, Longmont, and 30 minutes south of Loveland and 45 minutes east of Estes Park.  We believe that our community will greatly benefit from this fundraiser to help this flood victims.

The Impact

In Larimer County alone, the current impact area is estimated at 1,120 square miles. Another 760 are impacted in Boulder County and 385 in Jefferson County.

An estimated 35 bridges, 100 minor structures and 100 miles of road need repair in Boulder County. Emergency managers estimate $100-150 million in damage in that county.

Statewide, 26 shelters have taken in a population of 1,872 people. Nine counties and five cities have activated Emergency Operations Centers.

Saturday, President Barack Obama also declared a major disaster declaration specifically for Boulder County. That allows for federal assistance with temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners in their recovery.

Other Ways You Can Help

If you are not able to financially help we would love for you to share this with your friends, families, and businesses.

If you live in the area and were not effected by the floods and would like to help our church be a blessing and a ministry to the flood victims by helping them.

 

For more information on Carbon Valley Bible Church please go to cvbiblechurch.com or call 303-736-9959

Find our church on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Firestone-Baptist-Church/203757890870

 

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Help Relieve the Colorado Flood Victims.

DONATE

to the Colorado Flood Victims

Short Summary

Colorado emergency management officials have released an initial estimate that says the ongoing flooding has damaged or destroyed nearly 19,000 homes.

The Colorado Office of Emergency Management estimated Sunday on its website that 17,494 homes have been damaged and 1,502 destroyed.

In addition, 11,700 people have been evacuated and a total of 1,253 people are unaccounted for.

What We Need & What You Get

Our goal is to get $500,000.00 to go 100% to the victims of these Colorado floods.  These areas include Weld, Boulder, and Larimer Counties.

Firestone Baptist Church is located right in the heart of Weld County of which is central to Firestone, Frederick, Dacono, Longmont, and 30 minutes south of Loveland and 45 minutes east of Estes Park.  We believe that our community will greatly benefit from this fundraiser to help this flood victims.

The Impact

In Larimer County alone, the current impact area is estimated at 1,120 square miles. Another 760 are impacted in Boulder County and 385 in Jefferson County.

An estimated 35 bridges, 100 minor structures and 100 miles of road need repair in Boulder County. Emergency managers estimate $100-150 million in damage in that county.

Statewide, 26 shelters have taken in a population of 1,872 people. Nine counties and five cities have activated Emergency Operations Centers.

Saturday, President Barack Obama also declared a major disaster declaration specifically for Boulder County. That allows for federal assistance with temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners in their recovery.

Other Ways You Can Help

If you are not able to financially help we would love for you to share this with your friends, families, and businesses.

If you live in the area and were not effected by the floods and would like to help our church be a blessing and a ministry to the flood victims by helping them.

 

For more information on Carbon Valley Bible Church please go to cvbiblechurch.com or call 303-736-9959

Find our church on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Firestone-Baptist-Church/203757890870

Why Video Games are Destroying Society: A part of the Destruction of the Christian Culture

https://i2.wp.com/static.ddmcdn.com/gif/best-games-never-made-6.jpg I can tell you now that I will have many friends and former youth group members, that I was their youth pastor, that will not be happy about this post.  I am sure as soon as they see the title they are rolling their eyes or are angry from me posting this. But as we move on with society, I can see that this era of video games will end up being part of the destruction of our Christian society. I will tell you right now that many of these people who are angry, will probably pull up Google and type in the search bar, “the benefits of playing video games.”  Now before you do that, may I suggest to you that this is not about physical health or mental health.  There has been many studies that are posted all over the internet about these issues.  This is not about the camaraderie that these gamers may feel with each other.  This not about your gang or clan or community that one may be a part of.  This is also not entirely about violence or the sexual content in games. This at first may seem like something that is rather trivial and trite.  This may be something that someone may think that I am trying to push my personal agenda or that I am trying to make a mountain out of a mole hill.  Some may even think that this may be something like the movie theater debate that has gone on for the last 100 years.  “Show me the proof from God’s Word that gaming is wrong!”  But this is much farther than that I believe.  This not a small battle about something that at the end of the day has no validity. May I first say, that I am not anti-gaming.  I do think they have a time and a place. However, everything has to be in balance.  I think this digs much deeper that just whether or not our society plays video games.  Ultimately it is about how video games and the video gaming community is and will be detrimental to the health of the church and of the Christian society. This actually causes two problems within Christianity.  The first is that it will be part of the destruction of the Christian culture.  The second being that this is an unreached community of people, that the church is going to have a hard time reaching.  These two problems can cause major problems and I believe in epic proportions.   Now you may read that and laugh, but let me help you understand where I am coming from. This gaming community has largely become a rather introverted community.  This community can play for hours upon hours at a time, locked away in the rooms, offices, and basements playing these video games of all sorts.  They are constantly thinking of video games.  And now with the advancement of technology they can take video games with them anywhere and everywhere they go.  They spend hours upon hours trying to rank up, get to the next level, beat the final boss, and trying to get the latest feature.  If they are part of the smart phone market they are even spending money to help them make these advancements through the games that they are playing. This introverted mentality is sweeping the nation and sweeping the earth.  The video gaming industry racks in well over 41 Billion dollars annually globally.  What is scary about this is who this is influencing.  This market you would think would be sweeping into our teens and children.  However, the ESRB (Entertainment Software Rating Board) has completely different statistics.

  • 67% of all households play video games
  • 49% of those who play games are between the ages of 18-49
  • 25% were under 18
  • 26% were over 50

I am not sure if those number shock you, but they should.  If you notice the number of the least amount of players is actually the teenage!  Most video game players are those who are classified as adults by ALL scenarios.  Why does this pose such a threat to Christianity?  Have you ever heard of the thought that the Young Marrieds and College and Career show a healthy church?  As a church planter, I can tell you this indeed is true!  Young People attract all people when it comes to church. If a church has young people in it, that typically tells the rest of the area, that this church is culturally relevant.  For more reading on culturally relevant please click HERE. Personally I am scared because of these frightening statistics. “The National Center for Health Marketing at the Centers for Disease Control was the strong correlation between regular gaming and internet use, and increased risk for depression, higher body mass index (BMI), and other negative physical and mental health issues. Women who regularly played video games had both higher levels of depression and lower overall health status compared with women who didn’t play, and men who concentrated time on the console were more likely to have elevated BMI and report more time spent on the internet than men who weren’t gamers. Overall there were more male than female video game devotees (55.9% of those who reported playing regularly in this survey were men), but for both men and women, regular gaming was strongly correlated with a higher dependence on the internet for social interaction.” The last phrase of the previous quote scares me, it says that the gamers had a higher dependance on the internet for social interaction.  According to a survey conducted by video game price comparison site Playr2.com, gamers age 18 – 40 may end up dedicating almost two years of their lives playing video games. The company conducted a survey of 1,452 of its members, asking a variety of questions about their gaming habits. The survey found that the average gamer will spend about 1.8 years of their life playing games on various platforms. What this is doing to the Christian community is that instead of driving them out of their four walls of their home, it is driving them farther and farther inside and for more and more time.  I know this may seem small, but in the great cause that Christ has called us, this could be catastrophic. You may think that is over the top or exaggerating.  But as a Christians we must consider our greatest purpose.  If our time is consumed with beating the next boss, or leveling up and we forget the Gospel, what have we become?  If our churches are filled with video game minds rather than the minds of Christ, where will this lead us?  These gamers are the next leaders of our church?  These gamers are the next generation of “God Fearing” Christians? The gamers are the next group of missionaries?  These gamers are the next Spurgeons, Carmichels, Elliots of our time. I fear that this issue needs to be taken into consideration for massive action. Personally I have been concerned with the leadership of our church for years.  Many of the leaders have a hard time describing why they believe what they believe.  If this is the case now, what about the leaders that will be hereafter?  God has called us to be studiers of His Word, to be instant in season, out of season!  Always ready at a moments notice to defend, preach, and teach the Word of God.  He also teaches us to redeem the time because the days are evil.  The Lord’s return is immanent.  Should we waste our minds and time with such frivolous things?  A balanced approach is in order!  A vision of the spreading of the Gospel is in order!  And a mindset of renewing our minds with the Word of God is an absolute! This does bring us to the second problem. And to be honest. It is a problem that I do not know how to effectively solve!  It is a problem of reaching the Lost world who has introverted themselves in their basements playing video games.  How do we effectively reach these people for Christ?  There is an estimated 70% of the worlds population that plays video games!  This proposes a conundrum for us as Believers!  How do we effectively spread the Gospel to the uttermost parts of the earth…literally defined, the basement? We could:

  • Get more involved in the gaming community
  • Start Christian Clans and gaming communities
  • Create GREAT Christian games
  • Start Boycotting the gaming market

Obviously, some of the above suggestions are silly and ridiculous.  All the suggestions above have some issues that would actually make us spend MORE time in the world of gaming rather than limiting us.  If 70% of the world is gaming, than this is something that I really believe should be something that we as Believers consider.  How do we effectively reach the gaming world, without completely wasting our time as Believers? Truly at the end of the day, this may not seem like something that big right now.  But if the trend is going the way it looks like it will be going, this could be a devastating issue for the church, for outreach, and ultimately for the Gospel’s sake.

For more information on Carbon Valley Bible Church please go to cvbiblechurch.com or call 303-736-9959

Bible Preaching Church?

holding the bible

I know that this is sad, and really should not need to be said. But do you realize that there are a lot of churches out there that do not use the Bible.  What is sad, is that they call themselves a church.  The pastor no longer preaches, but rather gives a talk.  The congregation is no longer a congregation, but rather an audience.  The people are no longer expected to bring a Bible let alone actually open when.  The pastor no longer even opens the Bible, but rather just talks about life events that may have biblical principles.  The pastor is no longer looked as a pastor, nor should he be in these type of churches, but is looked at as a just another person.

We live in a Christian society that is doing everything possible to make church everything but a church.  The sad part is they are still calling it a church.  This is not a church at all and should not be called one.  This is not a place that is for the fellowship of Believers, but rather a hang out for like minded people.  This is no longer a call to holiness and repentance, but rather a social gathering to help others feel good.  This is no longer a place to understand right Theology, but now a place to hear about life stories and how to better live your life morally.

2 Timothy 4:1-5

I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: 2 preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. 3 For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, 4 and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. 5 As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.

This passage is pretty clear, that we should be expecting these types of churches to come into existence more and more.  God however, expects us to preach the Word. Where?  The church, inside of it, outside of it, everywhere, but specifically inside of it!  This passage is about the church.  A church should be a place that the Bible is not just talked about, but expounded on!  Not just highlighted, but expressed with detail.  Why?  Because it is for the betterment of the Believers.  This is for the shepherding of the Flock.  This is for showing those who follow Christ to look to be like Him.  This is also to protect the sheep from falling under false teaching.

False teaching is something that will penetrate our churches more and more as time moves on.  These people are there to follow after their own passions, and not to worship the True Christ.  If they were there to worship the True Christ, the Bible would be the center of that worship.  The Bible would be the focus of the church on Sunday as they learn to know Him better.

A church if it really is a church, is one that is focused on knowing God more and genuinely wanting to worship Him.  The Bible teaches us that Faith only can increase by the hearing of the Word of God. This is why it is crucial for this to be the center of our corporate worship.

I suppose the challenge would be to look at the church you go to.  Do they open the Word of God?  Do they reference the Word of God, or do they expound on the Word of God.  Do they preach from it, or do they just talk about life’s principles you may see in the Word of God?

For more information on Carbon Valley Bible Church please go to cvbiblechurch.com or call 303-736-9959

I Got Stuck in an Elevator Yesterday!

elevator-pitch

So there I was arriving at church yesterday getting ready to set up everything like every church planting pastor does.  I arrived about 45 minutes before anyone else arrived.  Just as usual I would load up my dolly and do some preparation downstairs, before taking the dolly in the elevator to finish all the preparations that we have upstairs.  Nothing out of the ordinary seemed strange or different.  I had done this hundreds of times before!  I was expecting anything to happen.  I would get in, push the button and about 10 seconds later arrive at the next floor and push the dolly out.

At the top of my now 8 second ascent, the elevator started vigorously jolting.  At this point in my life, I did no feel my life was in danger.  I did not feel that I had said my last goodbyes, or that I had seen my life flash before my eyes.  It was almost as though I was expecting at some point in my life to be trapped in an elevator.  After the jolting stopped, so did the elevator, however something different happened that had never happened before.  The door did not open.  So like anyone in this situation, I decided to try to open the door with my brute strength.  On my first attempt I realized that I was only about 2 feet away from the very top.  I supposed that was better than being stuck right in the middle of both levels.

On my second attempt I tried with all my might to open the door, but to no avail.  The apparently had some safety feature that only allowed it to open about 6 inches, either that or I was significantly weaker than I thought.  At this point I was unsure what to do.  Do I call 911?  It isn’t exactly an emergency!  Do I call the owner of the building we are renting?  I am not sure what he could really do anyway!  Do I call my wife?  Should I Let her have undo stress and let her worry about her beloved husband?

So I decided to pray and not freak out.  The funny thing is I was not scared even remotely. It was kind of one of those things, that I kind of just expected to happen at some time in my life. So I remained calm.  I then asked the Lord for wisdom as far as which direction to go.  I suppose it was a little uncomfortable in there as elevators are not meant to be long term stays.  The elevator was getting a little warm now as it was around 7 minutes into my thought process of what I was going to do.

Finally it hit me what I should do. I had already hit all the buttons on the panel.  Floor 1, floor 2, open door, close door, and cancel.  At last, I said I might as well push this button.  “In Emergency Push.”  So I did.  Immediately, I was drawn into a musical surround sound in the elevator of hold music!  I thought this was rather odd, but chose to wait.  Of course I had no choice.  As I was listening to the music just standing there, finally a voice!  “We thank you for your patience all of your service representatives are currently busy….”  I really did not feel like I had a choice but to be patient.

At this point I was thinking, I cannot wait for the congregation to come in the building.  This will be one for the memory books!  I will preach from the elevator.  Maybe the whole congregation can huddle around the hallway and I can preach through the door!  This was not ideal, but I figured, they came to hear preaching, they will get preaching.  Now it may be through the confusion of firefighters and EMT trying to rescue the poor trapped pastor, but I though well it could be worse.

At this point I started to think about a spiritual lesson, that kind of hit me square in the face.  The spiritual lesson was this…  How often we turn to God only when we have no where else to turn.  It is like there is a built in “spiritual button” that says, “In case of a life emergency push to access God.”  I often see myself doing just this.

Why do I need God to have an effect in my life, when I can do so many things myself.  I will call on God when I am at a last ditch effort.  “In Case of Emergency Push.”  How often have I seen this happen in my life!  I rely on my own strengths, and do not rely on God.  While I had time to think in the elevator, my mind was drawn to a passage of Scripture that we had been recently talking about in our Mid-Week Bible Study.  2 Corinthians 12:9, “But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”

God is not looking for strong people!  We already know who we are!  God is looking for weak people.  This is a little bit harder to find.  Why because weak people are not willing to admit their weaknesses!  This verse teaches us that God’s grace is sufficient, but only when we recognize that we need His strength.  This is what True grace is, God’s strength covering our weakness!

God does not want us to rely on Him just when we absolutely have no other option.  God did not give us a button only in case of emergencies.  Scripture teaches us to cast ALL of our cares on Him!  Everyone, even the ones we fill like we can handle ourselves.  He wants us to have absolute and complete dependency on Him.  God does not just want to be a part of our life when we want Him to be a part.  This is a common misconception of Christians and I believe as time moves on more and more Christians tend to have less of dependency on God.

As you probably have figured out by now, I am obviously no longer in the elevator.  After waiting and waiting through this endless music and voice prompts that said, “thank you for your patience” the elevator emergency call button service finally sent me to some type of voice mail.  I am certainly at this point, absolutely glad that this situation of me being stuck in a elevator was not a super emergency.  I was not exactly sure what to say on the voice mail.  “Hi, my name is Jason and I am stuck in an elevator.  Can you please get me out of here, I have to preach here in about 30 minutes!”

For some unknown reason, the elevator started sinking down to the first floor.  When the elevator stopped, nothing happened.  At this point I was somewhat relieved again to think, that was a whole lot better than the elevator just dropping to the first floor.  The door still closed, I was hoping well maybe something will just happen.  I hit the Emergency Call Button one more time, just to be reunited with the wonderful music.  This certainly put a whole new twist on elevator music! No matter who I looked at elevator music, I still do not like it!

Finally, after about 4 more minutes of me being now stuck on the first floor, the door magically opened.  I was not greeted by anyone, there was not great reuniting, just a story that I thought was rather funny as after I got out of being stuck in an elevator.  I suppose this situation taught me a few things, but the most important it taught me, was to always rely on God.  Don’t wait for the absolute emergency in your life, cast all of your care on Him…today.  No matter how much you think you can handle it, that is not the point.  The point is God is genuinely concerned for you, and all your weaknesses, needs, and even wants.

For more information on Carbon Valley Bible Church please go to cvbiblechurch.com or call 303-736-9959