Summerfest 2019: "Counter Culture Christ: The Civility Challenge" (René Schlaepfer) – 7/28/2019

morning not to have you with us this morning well you go ahead and stand with us we begin begin our time of worship and we want to begin by proclaiming who we know God to be and who we believe him to be who we trust him to be and that becomes the the really the the fuel for our praise this morning join us singing our last god through your experiencing Christ us jesus top senior singer ha ha believe in Christ this I believe the Holy Spirit I believe in the resin that we is our judge judge forgiveness he said you I believe in God IVA me that me in the leaving you Oh I believe in you yes neither died that she strikes it I believe in God our Father I believe in God our Father I believe in Christ the Son even though the spirit three I believe in the resurrection that we will rise again for I believe in the name gee I believe in life I believe in life eternal I believe in the virgin birth I believe in the Saints Communion and in your Holy Church I believe in the resurrection when Jesus comes again for I believe in the man Lord God we have declared our belief and in declaring so we are saying that we trust you every promise is sure you are completely 100% trustworthy you have never gone back on your word never once and Lord sometimes it's easier to sing our trust than it is to live out our trust and we pray that this morning this will be a catalyst in our lives to be better trusters that we would put all our hope in you with no reservations and that that would show in our lives that it lives a true faith would be lived down as we are worshiping bind us together for your purpose this morning we pray in Jesus name Amen let's enjoy some fellowship this morning would you turn to those around each other and greet each other say hello this morning good morning if you want to make your way back to your seat we're gonna continue our worship service together this morning all right well it's good to hear everyone fellowshipping this morning hopefully you should already got all that done yesterday out at the park all together raise your hand if you were able to come to our Summerfest up at the park outside all right very good who had a good time there I can't hear you got there's some good times you the crew people had a good time that's good raise your hand if you got sunburned yesterday out the park right there I don't know if you can tell but I'm trying to match my shirt with my sunburn already someone pointed that out to me they said are you why are you trying to match your shirt with your face Zack and I thought thank you that really hurt you know who you are no it was a great time if you're if you are just visiting this morning we are in the midst of our Summerfest 2019 and so this is something we try to do over the summer that we have a special guest speaker come in to encourage our church and our body as well as having different times of fellowship and this year we kicked it off yesterday with a time up at the park here in Claremont right up the street where we had big blowup inflatables for the kids as well as a lot of different games we had volleyball courts up we had our personal youth favorite game 9 square in the air and I could see some people really getting in there beating up some of the smaller kids a lot about that tall when you had big kids this big playing so it's kind of a little bit unfair difference but it was a great time out there and I hope that you who were there you had a great time as well with fellowship but Summerfest again we have a special speaker this morning Renee man I get really nervous every time I say it I said it right the first service Renee slept fer there he is right there he liked it oh man I thought I thought I was gonna be confident this service and I still wasn't but he is here this morning and you are in for a treat first service was a great time and I can guarantee that you were going to want to come back tonight for the second part of our Summerfest so at 7 o'clock is when we're going to be back in here for our second message from Renee but even before that you might have saw a table as you came in at five o'clock we're gonna be having a dinner in the fellowship hall and so if you're able to come to that for some extra time a fellowship to be together as a church we encourage you to do that if you didn't sign up at the table I believe someone will be there after service so you can still sign up as well as get some of the Claremont Emmanuel gear some swag merchandise of our Summerfest shirts as well as some cool hats we've got a cool hat right here in the front with the Claremont amount emmanuel logo on it but we just love for you to be able to feel that you are a part of this great summer event I here this morning and so we're gonna continue our worship service this morning but also just reminds you we've got the notes for Rene that are in your worship folders as well as on the YouVersion Bible app you can find the notes they're digitally as well but let's continue our worship service this morning well we're gonna begin with the song the new song that we learned last week which once and for all we were studying in Hebrews and we learned that the Christ sacrifice was done once and for all there is no further work that needs to be done Christ's sacrifice on the cross was complete will you stand with us as we sing so we take times look upon his face see the thorns we should his bride and no I hope is found in the that's flown what's it for off once and for all price times merci once and for me yes for here now is he is lady he's laying see look at mark is gross look upon his cross Oh God especially wanna see why is V CE the perfect once and for all right times burstiness a he's many he's we come to cross to the cross where merci where speak with the dry his blood our sin it's here at the Wynn we come mercy please wear speaking it's me once once and for Christ once and merci musky Hey yes for now he is what right once and for merci he's living look at mom this fitness look upon his brow and see this a is buddy I see your face you're a man phone you're beautiful you're merely I see you I see your face your you're beautiful you're a church you're beautiful I see you sorry we are you vo I see you there I see you now you are sitting yo whether your Oh I see a face behold I see your face your you see you're you're here we come presenting our need knowing our Lord I my chest lord I come I confess [Applause] we what I mean yeah [Applause] each my sons arrives to teach my son when I cannot stand what is Jesus you're my own man you know Oh one defense let's just take one moment and just stand before the Lord and each of us has a need it's presented before him now now just take time to praise him knowing that he is there to meet you where you are at lord I need you Oh oh well that we're gonna go to prayer and continue to present our needs before the Lord I invite you to be seated I want to invite you to take your worship folder and turn to the back as we bring some of our needs to the Lord now let's pray definitely father thank you for who you are thank you that you are the sovereign God there's nothing that takes you by surprise you are great Lord and greatly to be praised you are holy and it wasn't enough for Isaiah to cry that you were holy your holy holy holy the whole earth is filled with your glory Father we acknowledge your lordship over the universe you're the hope of the world and father we have so much to be thankful for we're thankful for each other we're thankful for our family in Christ we're thankful for our physical families the families that you've blessed us with we're thankful that even though we may be struggling with health issues we're thankful that we're healthy enough to be here this morning Lord we want to lift up some of the folks who some who are here some who would love to be here but are having some major health issues and we we pray for Shirley Freedman thank you that she was able to be at the first service and for Fred night and John Michell father we lift up Steven soon Norman we pray for Steve that you would wipe out every cancer cell in his body and pursue that you would heal her quickly from our two broken arms we just are grateful for them Lord one for all the ones on this list Father we pray for our own country that you would pour out your Holy Spirit on on this country guide our leaders and we pray that on a local level right here in our in our state as well as for our country and Lord we want to pray for the country of Ecuador as well and we pray that you would continue to give them a vision for missions we thank you Father for their the great tradition they have of missionaries in this country and we thank you now that you're touching the hearts of some of the the nashville national Ecuadorians to go out themselves and and reach their surrounding countries and and and people groups and so we we just continue to pray for Eddie and Maggie Paso more who are working in this country of Ecuador and pray that you would have your hand on them in a powerful way and we're grateful Lord for what you're doing through them father we want to pray for our missionaries of the week Kirk in Yolanda Rogers and pray that as they get that is a translation finished in the land uma language we ask that you would anoint them with your Holy Spirit and give them strength to finish what they've started we pray from a Sulu and an a boule as they help with the translation that you would give them insight and wisdom we pray for the tribal members Benjamin and janaba as they get some further training and get Bible training and we pray Lord that they would grow in grace and the knowledge of who you are and father we want to lift up our speaker this morning Renee slept for and we pray that you would anoint him with your Holy Spirit and as you do a miracle through every time somebody preaches you take your word and you and plant it in people's hearts and you you touch their hearts and draw them to yourself and and teach them to live in a more effective way for you we pray that you would do that this morning through Renee and father we thank you for the privilege of being able to give back to you what you've blessed us with a portion of that they want to do it out of obedience and we want to do it with great joy we love you so much father in Jesus name we pray and this is one of my very favorite hymns of comfort be still my soul the Lord is on thy side he has promised to undertake to guide the future as he has the past and due to that we should not let our confidence be shaken be still he's still my soul is that's they're patient the cross of a Forte we do die ooh babies I through these two words çb still lives my soul Oh to moocher Oh that Oh be bright still his voice needs nice still holy we shall be when so Forrester change aunty thing we shall be I invite you to be seated as we get into God's Word this and I want to introduce our speaker this morning Rene schlep fur is the pastor of twin lakes Church in Aptos near Santa Cruz and we have had Rene here before 13 years ago for Summerfest I first met him and he was like 1998 when he was speaking with another pastor we've had here to speak before ray Johnston and they were speaking at the national pastors conference and it was there for it was through Rene actually that I got the idea of having an outline with blanks and having daily meditations so if you don't like that I'm doing that you can blame Rene talk to Rene afterwards and telling that but I'm really thankful for Rene and his ministry in my life and his ministry at our church here as well Rene and his wife Laurie have three children and their youngest son is getting married next weekend but he's still here this weekend so let's welcome Rene with a warm Claremont Emmanuel welcome thanks man I'm so stoked to be here yeah it was 13 years ago that I was here last and so our kids were 16 14 and 8 so let me kind of give you a little bit of an updated photograph here they are now there's Jonathan who is 28 years old now he's an engineer for Apple works on the Apple watch so if you've got one of those you've got code but my son has written his wife Kelly that's our middle child Elizabeth she just graduated from Stanford with a master's degree she now works for an artificial intelligence firm so my children are always smarter than I am and that's her husband Jordan who's a youth minister he's great and there I am with my wife Lori Lori is a professor of comparative religion at a couple of places like Western Seminary and there's our youngest David he was eight years old when we were here last and Kenny I don't know if you remember we had to rush him to the hospital yet pneumonia actually while he was here and but he survived and he's doing great and he is now 21 and getting married next weekend and so I said yes to this to get out of the house so I'm super glad to be here but what's not in these picture are the two most important people in our universe right now our grandchildren Jonathan and Kelly's two kids and there they are Freddie and Danny Freddie just turned three and Danny is almost 8 months old and they are awesome I love them anybody grant any grandparents here today we raise your hand you know how cool it is right you know why I'm going to use them for almost every illustration in my message today right because I just love to show pictures love to love to brag on those two little guys they're just adorable well grab your message notes that look like this today and tonight we're going to talk about counterculture Christ that's the name of our little Summerfest series and here's what this is all about I noticed that our culture right now American culture is at a crisis point we are experiencing two things at unforeseen levels that we've never experienced before in our society and that's anxiety and incivility both anxiety levels stress levels worry levels are measurably higher than this culture has ever experienced perhaps higher than in any culture ever I'll get to that in just a second and incivility right now is so high that about 95% of Americans believe that incivility in our culture is the most serious problem that we're facing right now now you can't get 95% of Americans to agree on like the fact that the earth is flat but the fact that everybody agrees that's a problem is fascinating so anxiety and civility and I realize that actually in the heart of the Sermon on the Mount Jesus spends a lot of time dealing with both of those issues anxiety and incivility these are issues that Christians really need to learn about if we want to follow Jesus who is completely countercultural both of those issues so if you want to be a countercultural Christian following a counterculture Christ we're gonna dive into anxiety this morning and then incivility tonight I think it's gonna be huge I hope you can join us for that well as I start I want to tell you the story of my friend Dan ad rania this is a story I told thirteen years ago right after it happened actually when I was here last time and candy specifically requested that I teach it again and I said yes because it ties into the topic of anxiety so well Dan was a young father probably in his late 30s when he came to Christ at the church that I passed her Twin Lakes church up in Santa Cruz he had two teenagers he was raising his marriage had ended in divorce and that had caused him to seek out church and it was at our church that he came to Christ and when he found Jesus you could not wipe the joy off his face I was talking to Steve who we prayed for earlier today between services there Steve is back there and he said you know when I came to Christ last October it just brought so much joy to my life it he said salvation is true on so many levels not just like salvation from hell but just salvation from despair and that's exactly what Dan ad rania found you'd like you could not wipe the joy of the Lord office face but that joy was put to the test one day when Dan and his teenage daughter Shelly were driving to Christmas Eve candlelight services at our church Christmas Eve and on the drive he is coughing so much he can hardly get a breath and Shelly says dad you really ought to go to the doctor and check this out and he's all it's Christmas Eve the temporary thing she goes dan dad this is something so bad you've got to go check it out so what Shelly's urging he pulls into the one hospital in our little County and he goes into emergency and Shelly goes on and drives the car to candlelight services thinking she's gonna pick dad up on the way home from church after he's gotten whatever medication that he needs for this cough so Dan goes into the emergency room sits down on the waiting bench there faints and does not regain consciousness for over two months because what Dan had was a severe form of viral pneumonia it was the same kind of pneumonia that if you remember the Muppets and Jim Henson the guy who founded the Muppets he had the same exact thing and it killed him within a day and they told me and Dan's family this is what Dan has he is not going to survive the night he will be dead by the end of Christmas day and so he and his friends and fans and family we were all gathered in the waiting room praying for him he flatlined I mean he died but they resuscitated him got a little bit of a heartbeat back he flatlined over the next week two more times but they brought him back and so they're like well he's still in a coma but he's alive so far but there's no way he's going to survive this people just don't survive this well while Dan was in this coma they had to amputate part of his body in order to arrest the gang gangrene that started to set in so they had to chop off all of the toes on his right foot and then all the toes on his left foot and then his entire right foot then his entire left foot then his entire right leg as it just kind of kept advancing and this his entire left leg and then other bits and pieces of his body the tip of his nose the back of his head they were just chopping him up try to save his life as the gangrene just kept spreading finally they were able to halt it but so much of it and was just gone at that point we weren't we almost were like maybe we don't want him to come back from this then in early March I get a phone call at church Rene you got to get to the hospital Dan just blinked his eyes and woke up with no medical intervention from his coma no brain damage he just woke up like he liked imagine this is you and you passed out on Christmas Eve with what you thought was a little tickle in your throat then it's early March and you wake up and your body's what I just described it I mean how traumatic would that be so I prepare myself for the worst and I go into the hospital room I knock on the door hey buddy how's it going and Dan's throat it's made hoarse because they'd put a tube down his throat which had the lacerated part of his larynx he goes Renee Renee come on in and I go and I go sit down on the bed how's it going man he goes well let me put it this way this is the first thing he said to me he said I woke up I looked down and I realized I'm not half the man I used to be that's literally I was the first thing he said and he just has had this joyful attitude ever since he told me he goes Renee this is the way I look at it this is the hand I was dealt and so you can only play the cards you were dealt so I'm gonna play these cards as good as I can I mean it's it's quite a remarkable attitude and but that attitude is joy almost gets him at a trouble at times dan was in a wheelchair at first then he was fitted with prosthetic legs and the science of prosthetics has advanced so much when he wears long pants like I'm wearing right now you cannot tell that their prosthetics he can walk he can skip he can run but as I said that has gotten him into trouble he comes up to me before our Saturday night service a while back and it goes Renee I just have to tell you what happened to me at Great America today and Great America is this amusement we've got that's kind of like a Six Flags or a Magic Mountain up in Santa Clara and Dan and a buddy of his decided to go just kind of for a Saturday afternoon to just have some fun riding some of the extreme rides they've got and they decide to go on a roller coaster called invertigo now let me just kind of show you what part of the track of invertigo looks like when you ride on in vertigo first of all you get shot right out of the gate like it's 60 miles an hour just three two one boom just instantly right it's got a linear induction motor secondly you go through all these twists and turns and loops and corkscrews and then you go almost straight up at the end and your car just stops suddenly and then you go backwards through the same track again now also when you ride in vertigo you're not sitting next to the person you're riding to facing forward you're you're both turned inwards so that you're facing the person you're riding with so that like you're forward and then they're forward for the second half of the ride I don't know why they designed it this way so you can watch each other like scream and abject terror or something but it's kind of clever and then finally to understand and vertigo you have to imagine this imagine this is your seat when you're riding in vertigo you're not that the seats aren't sitting on the track the track is above your head so that when you're riding in vertigo you sit down but your legs dangle so yeah don't get ahead of me so here's what happens dan goes to ride on this ride and he sits down and they're in the single rider line so that they can be seated faster and he sits down and he's facing he said probably about a fourth or a fifth grade girl who he's never seen before in his life and he's wearing his long pants and his prosthetics and he sits down how's it going and she kind of like shyly looks at him doesn't say a word so they countdown three two one boom they get launched out of the gate and Dan tells me that his legs instantly whip back over his shoulders at a biologically impossible angle the soles of his feet are just facing backwards like this and Dan is having fun he's just going oh yeah can't imagine you're that little girl watching this she's like what's happening right now so then they go through all these loops and twists and turns and Dan's legs now loosened up are just spinning they're just like going like like a cartoon character then they go up that very end where they stop suddenly and of course momentum dance pant legs whipped forward toward this little girl and then his prosthetics come blasting out of his pants over the little girl's head into the clear blue California sky like torpedo tube launch torpedo tube tube then they have to go backwards through all these tracks and Dan's pant legs now empty are whipping toward this little girl like penance and a stiff breeze and Dan says little girls now grabbing on to her own legs screaming so the roller-coaster glides to a stop and Dan says instantly when the safety straights got released he said this little girl just went sprinting away screaming because she just saw somebody's limbs come up Dan's not going anywhere he's just sitting there and his friend his friend finds his legs they were fine he told me they spent the rest of the afternoon looking for this little girl to tell her honey those are protects you just not just see limbs come off of someone but they never found her and I told Dan why didn't you just tell her after the ride was over and you were both still there that those were prosthetic legs here's his answer to me he says Renee I tried to but I was laughing too hard now would that be your problem if you were Dan something like that happens to you and you try to explain but you're just laughing too hard man where I want to go through life like Dan right I know it's possible because I've seen him well here's where Dan gets some of his joy Dan is now a rep for wheels for the world that stand right there with his prosthetic legs right there in front of him that's his wife Melinda they married a wonderful woman dan is in Ghana West Africa in this picture they take wheelchairs to developing world countries and get people fixed up there and dancers look at how God has used this in my life he says my so-called disability has in fact made it possible for me to bridge cultures in in a way that nothing else possibly could have when people realize he said that then I'm a that that I don't have my lower limbs he said there's an instant connection and I can share the gospel with him in a way that I he said I never ever could have before he said Rene Romans 8:28 is true God works all things together for good even a tragedy like that God is amazing God is sovereign God is good I want to go through life with that kind of conviction and I don't always but how can I get past my anxieties and live with Dan adronis style joy well let's talk about it as we talked this morning in this little miniseries counterculture Christ I call this message reverse your worry how to turn your anxiety and did that kind of joyful confidence again this is so relevant today I just read in a new poll this year 55% of Americans say they felt anxious on most days of this past year most of us have anxiety every day and this comes on the heels of this Americans anxiety levels experienced a sharp increase in the past year 46% of respondents to this poll said they felt more anxious and worried than they did a year ago just probably two months ago I was online reading Slate Magazine so this isn't like you know national pastors magazine or something this is Slate Magazine and they were talking about a new report by the National Institute of Mental Health that proved that the United States is now the most anxious nation in the world now just think of what that means for just a second think of all the nations in the world you're talking about Sudan and Lebanon and Libya and all kinds of nations that are going through some really tough stuff civil war extreme poverty but when it comes to anxiety we're number one i sat on an airplane in February on my way to Israel next to a woman who was all dressed in black I found out she was going to her own sister's funeral in Syria she's a Syrian immigrant who several years ago migrated to the United States she's now a pharmacist at Stanford Hospital in Palo Alto up in the Bay Area and we talked for hours fascinating story about what it's like to be from Syria she until she was a young adult she grew up in a country that for most of her life was just being torn by a violence of or she said I said did you have any neighbors who lost their home she said oh like half of our neighbors their homes were just bombed and they everybody has a close family member who was killed in the conflict wow that's intense and so I said well how do you like the Bay Area she said well it's beautiful and it's lovely I said is there anything that you sort of wish that Americans would know but you know how the kind of thing like like if you're visiting a country why I wish somebody would ask me my impressions because I feel like there's something that they would like to know and she said well since you bring it up I haven't told any and Americans this but she said one thing that's really strange to me is I work up there in the San Francisco Bay Area which is just exploding right now if the Silicon Valley was an independent country its per capita wealth would put it second in the world second only to Qatar so it's booming its prosperous people are healthy it's a beautiful place to live she said I have never met more anxious people in my life she said they're like 10 times more anxiety ridden and worried then my friends and family in Libya and we're in a war she said I don't know what is going on in America but she's like everybody is just freaked out and what do they have to be freaked out about that is a great question so this is a super super relevant issue and Jesus has something to say about this it's very counter cultural and listen this is one of those messages that I'm preaching to myself because I am a born warrior I'm always imagining the worst case scenario like if my wife is five minutes late coming back from an errand she's probably dead that's instantly where I go I'm running I have a pain in my knee bone cancer most likely so that's just how I am right then it got worse I began having anxiety attacks I'd never even heard of anxiety attacks before I started having them I felt like I was having a heart attack or a stroke I thought I was going to die I'll tell more more about this at the end of the message but I ended up in the hospital very afraid with my first anxiety attack and one of the things the doctor explained to me is that my anxiety attack was my body responding to life with anxiety because I had trained it to do so with my constant conscious anxiety I had trained my body to / respond to every situation with super high shots of adrenaline and worry and the doctor told me so Renee you have to unate you have to retrain your body and your mind to be peaceful and joyful instead of anxious so how do you do that and a culture of anxiety how do we retrain our minds our souls to not be anxious I have no idea let's close in a word of Prayer no just kidding I dunno but almost every day it's a fight for me but honestly it's a fight I'm winning thanks to God and I've learned there are a lot of components to fighting this by the way that I I've benefited from meds from change and diet from a change in exercise but what I want to talk to you about today is another crucial component and that's relearning how to think and this is what Jesus talks about in Matthew 6 verses 27 through 34 that's the first part of the first major sermon by Jesus recorded in the Gospels and he says more about worry than almost any other topic and he says here's the problem here's the solution first here's the problem with worry there are four problems with worry and it this is a very easy passage to outline because Jesus poses for rhetorical questions about worry and the first one concludes that worry just doesn't work where he doesn't do anything for you Jesus asks who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life to paraphrase in the revised schlepped for version the RSV what he's saying here is who of you by worrying has probably taken a year off your own life who of you by worrying is driving people in your life out of their minds who of you by worrying has upgraded your marriage or your wardrobe or reduced your grocery bill who of you by worrying is added value to what you value most in other words what good has worry ever done you right nothing worry doesn't work and then second worry distracts me it distracts me from what's really important God has people for you to be with things for you to do opportunities he wants you to notice today and you're being distracted from those things by worry jesus says therefore I tell you do not worry about your life what you'll eat or drink or about your body what you'll wear he says is not life more important than food and the body more important than clothes and to paraphrase this question he's saying isn't life more important than whatever it is you're worried about worry distracts me from what's important from real life from what is happening right now from the gifts and opportunities God has for you you can tell I'm passionate about that this is this is for me talking about worry is like he's like recovering alcoholic talking about the evils of addiction I was an anxiety addict and this is why I preach about this with so much passion it is robbing some of you of the joy that your Heavenly Father wants to give you the other day I felt so busy I had so much to do but Kelly said can I drop off the grandkids for a while to keep an appointment I don't have anybody else to watch them and at first I was like wow I got so many things on my to-do list I thought you know what that's this is way more important and so I spent two hours with him that was just a gift I brought out the Hot Wheels and Freddie played with these little I just took some paper and I put it into little pieces of paper on the floor and I said Freddie this is garbage and you can use your Hot Wheel garbage truck to move the garbage around and he literally did this for an hour and his little brother Danny was on the floor there just watching him just it was like one of the best days of the year for me and worried could have distracted me from the simple pleasure distracted me from being with them and then third worried devalues me it actually D values you this sounds like such a contemporary thing for Jesus to say but 2,000 years ago he says look at the birds of the air they don't sow or reap or store away in barns and yet your heavenly Father feeds them and then here's his third rhetorical question are you not much more valuable than they saying you you're you're you're undercutting your value by worrying your value to who to God he's saying don't you realize how much your heavenly Father loves you your father loves you like a father loves a son or like a mama loves her baby and this is why Jesus keeps calling God your heavenly Father so we see God like a loving parent you think this is how much God loves you so don't let worry devalue you by telling you that God doesn't care and then fourth worry actually dishonours God it dishonours God because somebody said worry is practical atheism you say you believe but then you act like God doesn't even exist Jesus says and why do you worry about clothes see how the flowers of the field grow they don't labor or spin and yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these and then here's his last rhetorical question if that is how God clothes the grass of the field which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire will he not much more clothe you oh you of little faith and you could paraphrase this fourth question this way don't you know that God will provide so my parents were Swiss immigrants living here in the in the Bay Area when my sister and I were born dad was studying architecture at Berkeley and then when I was almost four years old and my sister was about a year and a half my father got cancer a fast-acting cancer that took his life and so suddenly my mother who didn't know a lot of English she wasn't a citizen of this country was left with two little kids this is the earliest picture I have of our family when it got knocked down from four to three and so there's mom with these two little ones in a strange country what's she gonna do well she had just come to Christ like right before dad's diagnosis and her faith enabled her to go through so much tough stuff most of our childhood was spent actually in poverty literally below the poverty line she married briefly but then was widowed again after just a few years and on top of all of this after many other hardships she got relatively early onset Alzheimer's disease and so we brought her into our home to live with us until she passed away three years ago but I often looked at her and thought man this woman just got hit pretty bad by life now she still loved to walk she was kind of an athlete and even in her Alzheimer's stage she still liked to go for walks and on this day when we went out to a walk to the to the lighthouse there at the Harbor in Santa Cruz I was going through my own time a time of anxiety and I asked her mom when you look back on your own life do you have any words of wisdom after all the ups and downs you've been through now she'd already had begun having difficulty speaking due to her Alzheimer's they call it dysphasia where you can think the thoughts but you can't speak them easily and after I'd asked the question she stopped and she paused for a long time and I thought maybe she doesn't understand me and I got a rephrase the question but then she looked at me and she was just mustering all her ability to concentrate past the fog of her disease and she was almost like stomping her feet trying to get the words out and she looked me right in the eye and she grabbed both of my hands and she said under thick Swiss accent the Lord will provide the Lord will provide and and tears started coming out of her face as she said it again the Lord will provide I mean I'll never forget it because that was almost literally her last word on life I mean think about that for just a second after being widowed twice struck with a fatal disease suffering a lot she said well here's the sum of it all when I add all this up the Lord will provide because she'd seen it happened again and again and again and I don't know what you're worried about right now but if my mom knew and if she were here today if she were able to be here I know that she would walk her way down the island down your row and she would look at you in the eye and hold your hand and she would say to her she would muster all her ability to communicate this truth to you whatever you're anxious about the Lord will provide the problem with worry is it undercuts your faith in this truth and then it undercuts your faith period and this is why Jesus talked about this so much the root of all worry really is doubting God's goodness where he chips away at your faith until you don't have any faith left or at least it's just kind of a very impersonal sort of an agnostic faith so how do you stop that erosion well Jesus then goes into the prevention of worry and I want to cover this briefly on page 2 of your notes I summarized what he said in three phrases that I heard once I actually I told you that I look at my own struggles with anxiety as if I was an anxiety addict and I've actually gotten a lot of help out of Christian 12-step recovery programs most people in recovery are there for alcoholism or drug addiction I go through it for anxiety addiction but so many of the principles are true and these are some of the principles that come right out of what Jesus teaches in these verses like number one live one day at a time you got to just live one now does this mean never plan ahead of course not the Bible says you reap what you sow the Bible says wise people make plans but you can plan for tomorrow without worrying about tomorrow you can plan for tomorrow but you have to live in today if you if you make plans for tomorrow you don't have to worry about it if you worry too much about tomorrow you're just gonna be paralyzed with fear and he won't be able to make plans in verse 34 Jesus says therefore do not worry about tomorrow for tomorrow will worry about itself each day has enough trouble of its own I want you to look at what Jesus is doing here that's so brilliant when he says don't worry about tomorrow what what really he's saying is fill in this blank don't worry about whatever it is you're worrying about don't worry about blank and Jesus is saying that effectively any worry is worried about tomorrow because it's taking you out of both the joys and the opportunities of today and and you add a lot of emotion to it and making you focus on tomorrow it doesn't do anything about tomorrow just ruins today it steals your joy ruins your sleep so remember to live one day at a time you that's all you can live after all and then secondly you live one day at a time oh I should mention this so consequently real Abel every word you've got is just tomorrow whatever your worry is real Abel at tomorrow it's just worry about tomorrow whatever's eating at you so live one day at a time and then second do one thing at a time do one thing at a time when my mom briefly remarried she married a guy from the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee and he just kind of had a kind of a homey aphorism for everything and he used to say where do you live he'd say oh we live way out in the toolies and my mom from Switzerland would try to talk like him because she loved him and she would always mess it up I overheard her one time going oh yeah leaving vais out into tulips that's to Lee's mom Dooley's but one time he told me when he saw me anxious he said Renee you're like a hound dog trying to chase two Jackrabbits at the same time you know you can't catch two rabbits at the same time but that's what worried does to you it leads to divided attention so just focus on one thing at a time and Jesus says here's the best one thing he says but seek first his kingdom and his righteousness and all these things will be given to you as well maybe you've read this before and you've wondered what does it mean to seek first his kingdom I heard somebody put it this way here's the point of what Jesus is saying when you are tempted to borrow from tomorrow look for a way to get into what get into what God is doing today does that make sense when you're tempted to borrow from tomorrow look for ways to participate in what God is doing today you're tempted to worry hang on instead call that person who's been on your mind instead you've been thinking about bringing a meal or some cookies over that neighbor well go do that right now instead volunteer for whatever you know kind of social justice thing that your church is doing instead of sitting in your living room looking at the TV bemoaning the state of this country well get up and do something about it participate with your congregation and what Claremont Emmanuel or wherever you're from is doing that's what it means to replace your worry with action for the kingdom of God look for ways to participate in what God is doing today that is a major cure for worry so you live one day at a time you do one thing at a time and then number three you trust God all the time you trust God all of the time Jesus says so don't worry saying what will we eat why don't we drink what will we wear for the pagans run after all these things and your heavenly Father knows that you need them your heavenly Father knows so live one day at a time do one thing at a time and trust God all the time when I had my anxiety attacks I went into emergency thinking I was having a heart attack or a stroke or something it felt terrible and the doctor came in he said Renee your EKGs all check out I didn't know who this doctor was and he said but I want to ask you a question about your life he so just looking over your chart here he said are you um do you have a stressful job and I didn't want to tell him I'm a pastor of a church because I thought like that would be a bad witness or something you know so I but I said yes yes doctor my job is super stressful it's like driving me crazy right now I can't sleep there's too much to do I never exercise because I don't have time I'm not eating right because I'm always working I just driving me into the ground I think my job's killing me and he goes well pastor Renee he says my wife and our two young children have just begun attending Twin Lakes and we love it and we don't want anxiety and burnout to ruin our pastor so he said I'm gonna help you get we're gonna make a team that's gonna get you through this he prescribed some meds which really helped me he gave me some physical advice but he said here's some spiritual cognitive therapy for him he said take a stack of three by five cards write a positive biblical promise on each one of them and then he said put them in your pocket like you're like a wallet with a rubber band around him and every time you feel yourself getting anxious wash your mind with those Bible verses like keep it with you at all times he says when you're driving to work before you walk into work whip those cards out and read them at lunch read those cards when you drive home in the driveway before you walk in the door read those cards at night read those cards put them under your pillow when you wake up in the middle of night take them out read those cards get up first thing in the morning read those cards repeat well I did this for months and first of all you memorize a lot of verses that way but secondly it really changes you like at the soul DNA level it teaches you how to live one day at a time do one thing at a time and really helps you trust God all the time well as we close I want you to see something talking about worries not some light issue this was one of the earliest teachings of Jesus we've just been studying it it was also one of the last teachings of Jesus right before he's betrayed at the last supper he tells his disciples don't let your hearts be troubled and it was also one of the final teachings in the New Testament the Apostle Paul facing execution tells the little church in Philippi don't be anxious about anything this is all over the Bible what I'm getting at is do not worry is major in the Bible it's not some minor thing it's not something like oh well it's just I used to I used to excuse it by saying well it's just part of my personality I'm anxious that's just the way I am that was a bogus rationalization for me to excuse sin in my life this is a major teaching in the Bible the Bible is saying you've got to grab this with both hands and grapple with it by the power of God and make plans to overcome it and you can imagine what would happen if you went countercultural on this one and didn't worry in our culture right now you'd be so unusual that people would notice and they'd say what is up with you it's not only healthier for you but it's a witness to others and so here's two questions for you as we close first what if you actually believed this that your heavenly Father loves you and the Lord will provide what if you actually believe this to the core of your being imagine what kind of a person you'd be so second why not believe this why not even as an experiment start today I dare you to do this for a week just pretend that you actually totally believe like Danna drana God's got it whatever happens to me God's gonna God's gonna use it for good like you really truly believe that a hundred and ten percent so I don't have to worry just as an experiment pretend you believe that how do you pretend you believe that try this for the next week here's the application begin every day every morning by declaring first your thanks think of five things that you're thankful for like the first moment you gain consciousness God thank you for these five things declare your thanks and your trust when those things that stress you start to rise up I go I'm facing this today I'm facing that just shoot it down by saying God I trust you for that up trust you for that that test trust you for that one that relationship I trust you for that the finances well trust you for that to God and if you do that first thing in the morning in my experience if you can get ahead of worry you usually stay ahead of worry I dare you to try this as an experiment and see what happens to you because you will become a countercultural Christian who proves that you are following a counter-cultural Christ let's pray together with our heads bowed what's got you worried right now maybe it's the future or your kids or your job or the country or your health well worries not gonna solve it so ask God to take your worries right now and pray this in your heart lord thank you that you're my heavenly father thank you that you care for me today I declare my thanks and my trust in you Lord we know that you are our gracious Heavenly Father that you love us like I love those two little grandsons so thank you that we can trust in that that we can know that with all of our hearts in Jesus name we pray amen will you stand with this as we sing our closing song there is please be just these the world there is no there is be the don't you and all of the life when Oh you show every time my fix Maggie's I will see there's these four troubled hearts histories me survive Oh is bad you show me my saw and heaven comes like man you shall be I will I will live my there is please be on understand please rest thank you guys well I sure hope that you'll be able to come back and join us tonight for part two from Renee so we'll be here at 7 p.m. again in the sanctuary 5 p.m. is dinner and if you would like to sign up for dinner you can do that afterwards we also have Summerfest t-shirts and and Claremont Emmanuel hats for sale so if you'd like to get one of those you can Renee also has some books that will be out at the table out there they're ten dollars each so I encourage you to stop by and check out his books and and maybe pick one up this is also Cruz last Sunday here and so we're sad to see him go but if you haven't had a chance to meet him it's not too late please say hi to them and thank them for being a part of our church this the Sun this summer and this Sunday also today you know we have our first grandchild who's here today so we have three of our four children here and our grandchild so if you want to meet them you can there right sitting with Cathy there you can go and meet them afterwards but well let's it will close with this The Amazing Grace of our master Jesus Christ the extravagant love of God and the intimate friendship of the Holy Spirit be with you all god bless you thanks for being here today and hopefully we'll see you back this evening

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *