Its funny the things that God can do for you isn’t it? The bible says ask and you shall receive, but most people tend to overlook that and say, “I’ve tried that, didn’t receive what I wanted, and
that’s that.” But see, that’s where they are wrong. When you ask God for something, His answer can come in many different ways. Maybe he’ll speak to you through prayer. Or maybe, he’ll send a
humanly figure to your side and help you. But understand this; you can’t ask God for $1,000,000 and expect a check to show up at your door the next day. God isn’t your personal Genie just waiting
to have his lamp rubbed. God is way bigger and more powerful than any human will ever understand until our time comes to meet him in Heaven.
See, this is where non Christians have a few problems. They all have different opinions ranging in a
variety of different thoughts, but a majority of the time, they have the wrong idea. I’ve brought a lot of my friends to God simply by talking to them about Him and the wonderful things he has
done, is doing, and will do in the future. Before those conversations, my friends thought of God as a Genie that if you asked for something, he’d make it show up instantly. When they’d ask upon Him
for something and nothing came of it, they lost hope. That is the image of God that non-believers put out there. So why not do something about it?
You all have those friends who you know have a horrible life at home and you’re always saying to yourself,
“I wish there was something I could do.” Guess what? There is something you can do. And you may find it hard to believe and I totally understand cause just a few months ago, I felt the exact same
way, but praying to God, your Lord and Savior, can make a HUGE difference. Just a few months ago, I had the state of mind that said, “Praying to God is good and all, but does it really help? Come
on now, get real!” But as I continued growing in my faith, I’ve realized that prayer is probably the most effective thing you can do, because think about it; God made everything, controls
everything, in a sense, is everything, right? And prayer is just simply talking to Him. So by praying, you are talking to the Man who created it all! He’s made hundreds of millions of galaxies
stretching farther than anyone can imagine. So don’t you think that maybe he can help you with your problem?
That’s the big picture though! He’s done so much for us; yet, people still choose to ignore His being.
Look at it in this sense; you have a neighbor who is very generous and one day you decide to go over and ask them if there is anyway they can help you out because you’re trying to raise money for
one thing or another. That person, having the heart that they do, donate a large amount of money for your cause. How do you take this? Do you thank them every chance you get for caring so much and
helping you achieve your ultimate goal? Or do you give them the cold shoulder and talk badly about them in public? God is the generous person giving us life and air to breathe and everything we
need to survive. You’re the one who’s received the gift and has to respond. Do you thank Him everyday for being the Glorious Father he is? Or do you reject him and choose not to believe, and talk
badly about Him? The choice is yours.
But see, some people have never been taught the right way. They have the parents who choose to neglect
God, by which, until some reaches out to their kids, they will believe that same. Part of being a Christian is spreading the good news. God loves you! If everyone in the world knew that God loved
them and that He was the answer to all of their problems, do you think that we would have the problems we do in our society? People killing themselves, murders, rapists, prostitutes, drug addicts,
alcohol abusers? Don’t you think that the world would be a much happier place if people knew that they could live forever in happiness with their Creator and that life on Earth was just a prequel
to what came next? Imagine that for a second. Nice isn’t it? But that is nearly impossible for the fact that evil being is just as real as God himself, sadly. Jesus fought of the devils’
temptations many times and that is exactly what the Devil does best. He will tempt and tempt and tempt and try his hardest to get you to fold. But with God in your heart, that won’t happen. You
see, the only way that people will hear about Jesus is if you tell them. Think of your school. Now think of how many people in your school go to your church or any church in your city. After that
reflection, isn’t it obvious the amount of witnessing you have to do?
For those of you who aren’t so sure of what witnessing is, let me give you the insight. When you have a friend who doesn’t believe in God, you should witness to them. All that is is simply talking
to them about God and maybe giving a quick testimony. My youth pastor says that using your friendship to lead you friends to Christ is the most powerful thing you can do. Tell them of how God has
helped you and made your life better. Tell of how you’ve started experiencing true happiness through Him. People need to hear real people saying this stuff. Its one thing to read the bible and hear
about all the great stuff Jesus did, but when people hear the stuff He is doing in the people you know, its reaches them at a higher level. People who haven’t heard the gospel sometimes haven’t had
a choice. All they are waiting for is someone to come along and tell them about it. You would have no idea the impact it has on those people when you walk up to them and say “Hi. Do you have a few
minutes? I would absolutely love to talk to you for a moment or two.” And by saying those few simple words, you’ve already came across to this person as an easy going, friendly person. Then after
you’ve told them about God and the wonderful things He has, is, and will be doing, they sometimes will be hooked, and all it took was a half an hour out of your day to safe them from the deep
depths of Hell. Doesn’t that feel good? And then, they will witness so some of there non-believing friends, and hopefully the same thing will happen. Sadly, however, it doesn’t always happen like
How can someone, so small on the face of the Earth, can deny the Man who created everything and beyond? I attended Student Life @ The Beach in 2007 and had the pleasure of hearing Louie Giglio
speak, who in the mean time has become my hero. But in his Indescribable talk, he says that you can fit 960,000 Earths inside the Sun, which isn’t even the largest star in the universe, believe it
or not. It’s just a medium sized one. In fact, the biggest star known to man-kind is one named Canus Majores. This blew me out of my seat when I heard this but check it out: you could fit 7
quadrillion Earths inside Canus Majores. And I’m not sure if you know exactly how big a quadrillion is, but look at it from this perspective. A quadrillion seconds ago would be somewhere in the
range of 30,800,000 years ago! Considering that a million seconds ago is only 12 days ago, that’s quite a difference. 1,000,000,000,000,000. That is what a quadrillion looks like.
Tell me how you, somebody who lives among six billion others, can deny your Father in Heaven who has created things bigger than our minds will ever comprehend? How is that even possible? That is
the most unfair thing that can ever be done. You think that your mom taking your cell phone away is unfair or your boss making you work extra hours to finish his work is unfair? How about creating
Earth for people to live on and have life, then asking for them to praise You in return and spread the word about You, yet, they say that You aren’t worthy of it. Excuse me? He isn’t worthy of it?
He is worthy of everything times infinite. We are the unworthy ones my friend, us! The selfish ones who live to please ourselves, yes us. But that is the beauty that is so great. We have been
forgiven so that one day we may live with the King in Heaven.
The Bible says in Matthew 5:48 “Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly father is perfect.” This is telling you not to sin, strive for perfection. God on the other hand knows this is impossible,
and knowing this, sent His son to die for us so that we may be forgiven of those sins and still be worthy of eternal life. There is one perfect man to ever walk on the face of our planet and his
name was Jesus Christ. He was perfect. He never once looked at a woman and had impure thoughts, and not once did he use his Fathers name in vain. Nor did he ever have hate in His heart against
another. God sent Jesus down to Earth as the ultimate example. Jesus was perfect. We as Christians should also strive for perfection, even though we also know that we can never achieve that because
in which case, we would be equal to our Savior and the bible states that our Lord has no equal.
God knows that we will mess up. He knows that there is no way we will be perfect. But our imperfections and our trials only make us stronger in our faith. If nothing ever went wrong, we would think
that we didn’t need God in our lives. So God gives us the occasional mishap. It isn’t always our fault, but it always helps us make us stronger. It sometimes makes us question our faith. But God
knows this. Because He knows that it is only helping our story with Him. Our troubles are stepping stones to Heaven. Once you’ve let God in, there is nothing that you can’t make it through. And for
every problem, your faith only strengthens.
My youth pastor and I were having a conversation one time about how troubles make your faith stronger and he said something that I will never forget. He said this: “I honestly don’t know how
non-believers can make it through a crisis. When they face a death or a divorce or something that changes there life, I don’t understand how they can make it through life.” I had mixed thoughts at
first as to how they could make it through but the longer I pondered, the more I realized that the trouble they were facing was probably because of God.
I’m not saying He was trying to ruin someone’s life because they didn’t believe in Him, but He was trying to get them to come to Him in their time of need. I shared this with my youth pastor (Rich
by the way) and he agreed. We came to the conclusion that one of the biggest ways to realize that you NEED God is by going through a life changing event, usually a hard one.
If you grow up in a rich family always getting everything you want, you’re not going to want to go to church because chances are, they already have everything they need to make them happy. But as
they grow older and start to be neglected by their parents and never have any friends and have forgotten what it means to be happy, how will they respond? Depending on the person, there are many
different choices. They could hide it and continue living the life that they have and just shut everyone out because they don’t know how to get close to someone. Or, the seriousness could multiply
and the person could be so depressed that they would have thoughts of ending their life. God calls us to change that. We as Christians can see the unhappy people in life. It’s our jobs to do His
work on earth and reach those people and teach them about God. You would be amazed by what a simple conversation would do. And that one conversation might lead to an exchange of numbers which may
lead to you asking them to a church event, which may lead to them accepting God into their hearts, which ultimately means that through God, you just saved someone’s life!
It seems farfetched, but because of that person being neglected by his/her parents, that lead to God telling you to help. It took something as bad as suicide thoughts to turn this person’s life
around. And a lot of times, the person comes to God and is saved before doing any major damage to themselves.
But what happens when someone has a bigger problem at home, maybe abuse, and when we’ve tried to help them, they hurt us. They then go on to commit suicide. How does that reflect on us? God told us
to help, we tried, we ran into a problem, we quit. And because we quit, that person died, on his own account. But would Jesus have quit? You know the answer as well as I do. And doesn’t the bible
tell us to strive to be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect? (Matthew 5:48)
We quit. We failed. They died. End of story right? No, God tested us as well as tested them. But by this event, we have become stronger in our faith. Sadly, God knew that we would fail and that the
man would take his own life. God used it to make us stronger though.
The awesome part though, is that we aren’t always going to fail. I’ve talked people through suicidal thoughts a few times and it was simply because God gave me the wisdom to do so. Thankfully, I’ve
never known anyone close to me to take their own life away, and hopefully I never will. But it kills me when someone sends me a text and says “I don’t even know if its worth it. I just wanna die”
Think about that, how would you respond? I reacted quickly with a “Please, don’t do this, can we talk about all of this?” After a few hours of tears and cursing, I had saved a life, through God.
God does everything for a reason, and you can talk a lot about that, but for the time being, let me tell you that God knows what He is doing. He does. And even though He knows that there are going
to be suicides committed and homicides carried out, and horrible things like that, its all for a purpose. Sometimes, it takes that deepest most hurtful thing to reach someone. That’s just the way
it is, wretchedly. But everyone has a chance to be a follower of God. It doesn’t matter how tall you are, how big you are, what you’ve done in your past, etc. GOD DOESN’T CARE!! He wants you to
love Him! If you are willing to do that, that’s only the beginning in the story He has planned out for you. And all of this can start by asking God the following: (And this is just an outline of
what can be said. This is what I told God when I came to know Him, but Everyone talks to God in their own personal way and there is no one prayer that is right. As long as your talking to God, than
your doing just fine) “God, I know that in my past, I’ve done bad things. I know that I’ve done exactly what you have said not to and I AM SORRY. I realize now that what I was doing was wrong and I
want to change that. I want to be forever with you and I want to take my life into your hands. Make me yours and mold my heart into what You have already planed for me God. I no longer want to lead
my old life, but I want to start over in you. God, please FORGIVE ME and take me as your child. I want You to be my Father, in Heaven, Forever.”
Do people Sin sometimes knowing that it’s wrong, simply because they know the forgiving nature of God? Do we say to ourselves “Well, even know this is wrong, I’ll make it the last time and then ask
for forgiveness and everything will be ok.” Have you done this? I have, multiple times. I’ve probably had 100 last times. So why is this not right? Well, don’t you think that by doing this we are
kind of taking advantage of what the Lord has done for us? He sent His son so we could experience forgiveness and love and happiness and have a strong relationship with Him! Notice the first thing
I said there, ‘Forgiveness’. Hebrews 8 talks a lot about Forgiveness. See, my point isn’t to stop asking God to be forgiven, but to stop taking advantage of it. Hebrews 8:10 says that God writes
His laws on your heart. This is saying that once you’ve accepted God into your heart, you will be changed from the inside and become more and more like Jesus. Next, in Hebrews 8:10-11, it says that
God becomes yours and you become His. The Holy Spirit comes to live with you which will bond together you and God forever. And lastly in Hebrews 8:12, God forgives you completely! Your sins all
forgotten, and you can look ahead to a new, better life. So here you have it, God will forgive you of all your sins! But did you also read the previous two verses? God will write His laws on your
heart and when you accept that, it will make your sinners side die down. You won’t get the urge to do the things that maybe ran your life before. You will become God’s and God will become yours.
The stronger your faith gets, the easier it gets for you to say NO to drugs and alcohol, and NO to sex and pornography. Instead, you will begin saying YES to God and everything He has planned for
you. So don’t take what he has to offer for granted, but realize that your guilt is hone, and with God in your future, it is brighter than you can ever imagine.
So did you know that God has a plan for you? Not our churches plan or your personal plans. But He has a mission for us in this sinful & broken world to restore our relationship with Him.
You see, we were once alienated from God, not a day when any of us were around, but there was a time when
we weren’t close to Him in the way he wanted us to be. But because of God’s son, Jesus Christ, the relationship has been restored. That is His mission!! Because of Jesus, it is now possible for us
to spend Eternity with our Father in Heaven. Think about that for a second…. ETERNITY! Not the next few years, try forever and ever and ever. Just try and wrap your head around that. It’s truly
But, along with that wonderful opportunity, we have also been called to be apart of this BIG picture and
spread the word of God. But how can you spread it if you don’t get out of your seat and say something? If your afraid to stand up for what you believe is right and let others in on the big secret,
you aren’t doing your role in God’s plan.
See, there are a lot of things in the world that sometimes we think are more important than Church related “stuff”. But there is only one thing in this world that will NEVER be ripped away from you
and that’s the relationship you can have with God. Let me cover the two reasons for not serving in the church:
The biggest thing for almost all humans is this “I just don’t have any time.” Now I could get mean and tell you all the stuff you do have time for, but I think that just by reading this a small
shower of guilt will come over you. Just writing it I also have some. But here’s the second reason that people tend to use: “I’m not good enough!” Ok, plain and simple, that’s just not true!
Ephesians 2:8-10 says “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith. And this is not from you; it is the gift of God; not by works so that no one can boast. For we are God’s workmanship,
created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do!”
- YOU ARE GOOD ENOUGH!
Now, switch back to the “getting off the bench” thinking. Fantasy sports. You can have the best players in the leagues on your team, but if they are on your bench, what good will they be doing you?
Other than making your team lose of course. I play fantasy sports and I get pretty into it. Fantasy football was the sport where we had the drafts and everyone crazed over it. So this past year I
was playing my step dad and the game was for first place, so it was a pretty big deal. It came down to Monday Night in the 4th quarter when his receiver caught a TD and he went ahead by
5. I ended up losing by 5 and dropped to 2nd place. But you know why this loss was so bitter? Matt Ryan was my QB but due to a few down weeks, I benched him for the week. He threw 5
TD’s! 5!!! I would have beaten Steve by 31 points had I started Ryan.
But you see, Paul wrote in Ephesians that no one had to ride the bench & in fact says that if someone
is, then something is terribly wrong! Kind of like not starting Matt Ryan.
Ephesians 4:16 says this “From him the whole body, joined together by every supporting ligament, grows and
builds itself up in love, as each part does its work”
The body of Christ won’t grow unless we spread His Love around and let it be known that He has a plan for
us and that he loves us and that EVERYTHING we do is for a reason. And in that verse where it says that we each should do our part, that’s not saying that we all need to go out and be ministers and
pastors and have jobs within the church. Its simply stating that we need to do what God has called us too and everyone has a different calling. (Lawyer, Social Worker, Technician, etc.) But in
those jobs, be faithful and talk to co-workers and customers about God’s unconditional love for us. It WILL make a difference. And for now, while we are in school, spread the word through
fellowship. Get your friends together and do something fun, and in the mean time, start telling them about their Creator. Chances are, they will become interested.
God is calling on everyone to play. No one has to be a bench warmer because to God, we are all the star players and what happens when your best players are on the bench? Your done, your team
loses! His plan is for you to be apart of His mission! God didn’t intend on life being a spectator sport. Drive the lane and score, throw the game winning TD, hit the Homer to send the game into
Extra’s. Be the hero in God’s book, not your own. And some of you are saying, I’m off the bench, but I don’t know how to get others to join me. All it takes is a few words. I know a kid who had
never played basketball in his life and I asked him if he wanted to ball with me one day at the courts and he came along, he liked it and I told him he should come out for the team. Now he’s
shaping into a great ball player and all I did was ask him. Ask someone to youth group or church or a camp. It can change their life! Worked for me.
And if your still on the bench and your looking to get up, think of it this way, in God’s book, you are Matt Ryan and God will start you every week!
Pray about where you would fit best into God’s plan and talk about it with Rich or people you feel comfortable around. God has a plan for you, he’s just waiting for you to ask about it.
So get off the bench and onto the floor, you gotta game to win! I pray that out of His glorious riches he may strengthen you with power and spirit. Amen!
The crazy thing about that is I was writing that bit on fantasy football for a talk at youth group and the Fantasy Sports hit me right in the face. Then, I was looking for a few verses to back my
points up and there was a sermon I found that had to do with the same thing! Except this guy used Brett Favre. God’s ways are mysterious, don’t you think?
So this God thing, its pretty much the Big Picture, wouldn’t you say? And in our world, wouldn’t you say that money is a pretty big part of the way things are done here on Earth? So let’s put the
two in the same sentence; God tells you to through $20 in the offering plate a month. Do you listen, or do you say “God, I think I have the money thing under control.” Did you know that a national
survey shows that 20% of church population gives the church a little over %80 of their offering? Now I’m not calling anyone out because what some people are called to give is different than others,
but you also have to take account that there ARE people with the selfish mind state. Tell me if I’m lying? They think they have their lives where they want them. But they have no idea that the
money they are talking about really isn’t even their money, right? The bible says don’t let your right hand know what your left is doing when it comes to giving money. But God knows what you do,
and that’s for the simple fact that God is the only reason you have that cash. Yeah, you may have worked for it, blah blah blah. But without God, there wouldn’t be money, there wouldn’t be that
chance for you to make that money, and if fact there wouldn’t be anything at all. So don’t you think it may be wise to listen to what He tells you, considering He’s the reason that you have it?
Now life isn’t about money. And money is very small in the world of God, miniscule. It’s only an example of human selfishness. We think we have it all under control, we are our own boss. So if were
the boss, why don’t we pray to ourselves for forgiveness? And why don’t we go to church on Sundays to worship ourselves? You know, since were as good as it gets… I’ll tell you why, because you
AREN’T the boss! And I’m not the boss and Rich isn’t the boss. If you live to make yourself happy and build up your treasures on Earth, what good are you doing God? Back to the money picture, where
do you put your money when you are trying to save it? The bank right? Because on Earth, that’s the safest place. But the truth is, all that money is doing is waiting to be spent on something you’ll
have for a few more years, then you die and it means absolutely nothing in what you’ll be doing for the rest of Eternity. So why not start saving up all your treasures in Heaven, where it actually
means something? Now I’m not saying that having money is bad, I’m saying that too many people live for money and money alone. God could care less how much money you have though, he wants your Love
and with that, you can’t go wrong.
So we’ve come to the conclusion that God is the boss, right? But you also know that in life, you’re going to have people who have some control over you, bosses and teachers, and so on. So who do
you listen too? Say it’s Sunday morning and your boss calls you up and says “Hey Dylan, I need that model finished by noon today!” But you haven’t even started yet. Do you skip church even though
God is calling you to worship Him? Or do you tell your boss that he is being unreasonable and make him wait until Monday? I don’t have an answer to that. It’s a personal choice as to what you do.
But in a more realistic form, what if you have a principle who says “God isn’t real. There is no proof. And if you talk about Him with your friends one more time, I’ll suspend you.” What are you
going to do? Deny your Lord in the presence of others or spread His word happily knowing the consequences? Honestly, there aren’t many principles like that, but there are people in life who are
going to threaten you for talking about God. Are you going to say “sorry, you are right?” Or “My God loves you just as He loves me and I will speak of Him proudly because there is not one thing you
can say that will change the way He thinks about me. He is the Boss of me, not you! ” Will you stand up for what is right? Get off the bench for your boss?
Sports include coaches. Coaches have some serious pull in the way you live your lives during their seasons. Am I right? Well say your season is 11 months through the year. And it’s expected of you
to be at optional practices. If you miss, sometimes there are consequences. Will you fall for his manipulation? Let me tell you something though, he may be in a position holding high authority in
your life of sports, but the boss who holds the authority for the rest of your life, who to me is a little more important, will NOT manipulate you. Love Him; give him all you can whenever you can.
He knows and understands what you have to deal with at home, the stuff that coaches don’t understand. But He also knows that nothing should come before Him. And you may say, “Isn’t that arrogant of
Him?” Yes, in a way. But aren’t you glad He is? If He wasn’t, there would be no us. Why? God created us for one fact, to share His love with us. He also knows that none is better then Him, He knows
He’s the boss. And if He didn’t, then when you would go to Him for help, He’d reply with, “Well, I don’t think I’m the right person for the job. I’m sure you could find someone better than Me,
right?” WRONG!!! God knows his power, thankfully. God is the BOSS and there is none who He can point you to who is better then Him. When we go to Him with a problem, He responds with “YES, I’d be
glad to help you! Why? Because I Love You! Do you want to be controlled by a boss who holds things against you, or a Boss who will forgive your every mistake? A boss who will punish you for all of
your miss-haps? Or a Boss who will take them to make you stronger? A boss who will lead you to a few wins here and there? Or a Boss who will lead you to a Full Life on Earth and an Eternity in
Heaven? The choice is yours…
(John 8:31-32)… “Then Jesus said to those Jews who believe Him, ‘If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you Free.” If your
coach gives you a game plan for tomorrow nights game, does that set you free? Or after your boss gives you a raise, are you then free? I think not… Why do we choose to be bossed around by people
who can give us nothing but small meaningless earthly positions? Because we believe we are our own bosses. The best thing we can do is realize that we are really really small and that God is REALLY
REALLY BIG! Look at it this way: We’re the boss of some small branch office. God, however, is the C.E.O. Do we have some say in what goes on, yes? Should we not look for instruction from higher
power? No. God is in control! Not you, not your teachers, or your coaches. No one can serve two masters, NO ONE! God is the one and only master we should listen to. Simply because no one has what
He has to offer you! Nothing on Earth comes even close to what He has waiting for us in Heaven. Imagine the God’s kingdom is the ocean. All we have seen of what is waiting for us, is the mist that
comes off the waves. We have yet to explore the depths of God’s love in Heaven and it has been quoted in scripture that it only gets better. God is the C.E.O who will NEVER stop hiring
So now, we’ve been called to a challenge. God knows we fall short of His commands. He knows. He also forgives. He wants you to strive to be perfect. He knows we’ll fall short. He knows there will
be times when you take orders from the wrong bosses. But realizing the God is “THE BOSS” will decrease those times more then you can ever imagine. Manipulation will start to diminish. So next time,
when someone challenges your faith and forces you to make a decision about which your going to follow, are you going to choose the dude who will get you a small fry at McDonalds? Or will you choose
the dude who’s going to get you the daily special entrée at Olive Garden? I feel you’ll make the right choice.
The following is a prayer that really helped me come to grips that God was in control: As king You were crowned ; as servant You knelt; but both roles demonstrate Your power. Only You are King
and only You are the Boss; and I now can be Your servant today; Use me as You wish! In Jesus name I pray, Amen.
© Copyright 2016 Isaiah Smith. All rights reserved.