Friday, September 7, 2007

Will You Be Saved?

I hate when I do this. One paragraph, but I wish I hadn't left it out of the sermon Wednesday night. I think that perhaps it would have made it a little more practical and inspiring. Here is the paragraph:
So what do you do, when you find yourself in the midst of despair? Repent and cry to God for mercy. Call on Him to help you in times of trouble. Repent and turn to the Lord. I love the great mercy of the Lord. Listen to 2:12-14, “Yet even now [that means in the midst of this judgment] return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning; and rend your hearts and not your garments. Return to the Lord, your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love; and he relents over disaster. Who knows whether he will not turn and relent, and leave a blessing behind him…?”

As I read this, I am wondering how long has it been since we at FBC New London have turned to God with all of our heart? How long has it been since we fasted, since we deprived ourselves of material blessings because God is sweeter than anything? How long has it been since we really mourned? How long has it been since we have been absolutely broken for our sin? How long has it been since we have actually shed a tear for our sin and lack of love for the Lord? What does it mean to rend our hearts and not our garments? It means to not just pretend like we are broken but that we are actually broken, and repentance and obedience follow!
How hungry are you for God today? The locust invasion made Joel hungry, but not just for food, it made him hungry for the living God. May the Lord have grace on us to make us hungry!
Furthermore, I also want you to think about the closing words I gave you. "What would it be like if rather than expending all of our energy on trying to be accepted by God (which we already are in Christ) we would expend all of our energies on worship?" Oh! That we might be broken and thankful today!

In case you want to read the full text of the sermon you can find it here:

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