Morning. David Sorn. Lead Pastor here at Renovation Church.
We’re going to start a little differently this morning.
For a long time now, we’ve been talking about how we really value church planting…starting new churches.
Starting new churches is the most effective way to reach new people in America in the last 25 years
And our big, crazy, audacious goal is to plant 10 new churches out of Renovation Church in 10 years.
We are kicking it off with a bang by starting 2 churches out of our church this Fall already.
We help start churches by giving 5% of our offering every week to our church planting fund, giving training to church planters, and thirdly by allowing them to be supported by you
Whether that’s financaily, in prayer, or by actually joining their launch teams
When we started Renovation Church, 15 people joined our launch team from our parent churches: Grace Fellowship and enCompass Church
We’ve been talking about our church planters for quite some time now, and today, for the first time, one of them is here.
I want to call Bryan McInnis up to the stage and introduce him to you
Bryan is going to be planting Hope Bridge Church in Plymouth this Fall
Q & A
Tell us a little bit about yourself. Family, what do you like to do, etc.?
Tell us why you feel called to plant a church? And why in Plymouth?
What’s Hope Bridge Church going to look like? What kind of church do you want to create?
Thanks Bryan! (you can have a seat)
Bryan’s going to be here an additional 2 weeks after this week, so start thinking and praying about if there’s a way God might be calling you to support Hope Bridge Church.
We’ll give you an opportunity to respond in the coming weeks, but feel free to meet Bryan between services!
FUTURE YOU CONCEPT
Let me pray as we get in to today’s message.
We are starting a new series today called “Future You.”
Here’s the general concept for the series: Imagine with me that you could come back in a time machine from 5 years from now, 2017, and talk to yourself today in 2012.
What do you think the “Future You” would say to yourself?
We are doing 5 years into the Future today. 50 Years into the future next week, and 500 years into the Future in 2 weeks.
So, for today’s topic…the 5 years, it’s like this: I’m 30 years old right now.
And I’m saying, what if the 35 year old me, could come back and talk to me, right now, today?
What would he say?
Now, at first, you might be thinking, “Well, that’s stupid. It’s an unanswerable question. It’s all speculation.”
And on the one hand, sure, it kind of is.
But on the other, it’s not.
It’s easier to see what I mean, if we go backwards first.
Let’s go back in time, shall we?
Let’s go ALL the way back to 2007.
Do you remember 2007? So long ago:
Here are some things that happened that year:
Virginia Tech shooting
The iPhone was introduced
Blu-Ray beat out HD-DVD’s
The housing bubble began to burst
35W Bridge collapsed
So, if you went back to 2007, what would you say to yourself?
Well, firstly, you might say something like: “Please don’t buy a house this year…or an HD-DVD player for $2,000.”
But what else would you say?
In fact, think about it for a moment, if you could go back 5 years, what would you say??????
You might say some things like:
You’re gonna need God more than ever these next 5 years
Not everything’s gonna come easy
As much as you’d like to think, you’re not gonna have it all figured out in 2012.
God’s going to bring you some real blessings in the next 5 years. THANK HIM for it.
Get Help. Get help for your depression, your addiction now.
Spend some time with your spouse. Your relationship is gonna be tested. Work on it. Don’t let it wither.
That thing you’re going to freak out about in 2009 AND 2010, it’ll work itself out.
And we could go on and on and on and on
EYES GONE BAD
Honestly, I think if I had 24 hours with myself from 5 years ago, I couldn’t fit in all the things I’d want to say
I don’t think we realize it sometimes, but we learn a lot in 5 years.
So much so, that if you had 24 hours with yourself from 2007, you could download a lot of wisdom.
So what if the 2017 version of you came back? What would they say?
They might say things like:
Hey, don’t buy that 3D iPhone. It’s a joke.
Or, stay faithful. The Timberwolves will win a championship
Or, enjoy driving now because they’re starting to automate it
But let me tell you something crazy.
For the vast majority of people in this room, you’re actually going to be telling yourself the exact same thing 5 years from now, in 2017, that you would tell yourself right now if you could go back to 2007
The themes, unfortunately, usually don’t change.
For a lot of us, if the 2017 FUTURE YOU could talk to you, they’d be screaming the same things you’d scream at 2007 version of you:
“Seriously, stop the addiction now. Stop it now! Do whatever you can. Don’t do this for another 5 years. Trust me!”
“Slow down. SLOW…down… Focus on your family. Your kids. Working like crazy…you might think it’s worth it now…it’s not”
“Hold on tightly to God. Tight. He’s going to do some amazing things for you in the next 5 years. Give Him credit. Don’t’ steal it from Him.
“But there’s some hard times coming. Hold on tight to Him. Tight!”
“Stop relying on yourself. You need something greater than this. You need someONE greater than you. Life is more than just school, work, and family. You’re getting older, life is growing shorter… there’s more to this life. Find it!”
It doesn’t take a genius to agree that these are indeed some of the things you would say to yourself.
If you struggle with your addiction, your depression, your marriage, you name it…for 5 MORE years, of course you would be yelling at yourself….
“Stop it now! Get help now. Please, please, please, don’t put yourself through another 5 years of this! There is life… there is help! One who can help!”
But for most of us, even though we can agree with that, we don’t do anything about it.
We see that we haven’t changed that much in the last 5 years, and it doesn’t look like we’re on the path to change in the next 5, but we don’t do anything about it.
And here’s why…
Our sin, our depravity, our brokenness, for most of us, it’s a slow fade.
Serious enough that we notice it, but never fast enough that we do anything about it.
Let me give you an example.
I’ve always taken pride in my eyesight.
I didn’t have to be one of those kids that had to get glasses in 2nd grade
Or worse, 7th grade, when all the kids when mock you for it.
I’ve never had to wear contacts or anything.
I’ve always said, “I’ve got perfect 20/20 vision.”
But I don’t think that’s totally true anymore.
Over the last 5 years, I think my vision has started to get worse.
I can’t read street signs as well as I used to
Or, I notice it if I’m in some big box store, and I can’t read the signs over the aisle as well.
But, am I going to do something about it?
Probably not. J
I’m just being honest with you. I don’t want to go to the eye doctor, because if I go to the eye doctor, then I’m going to have to wear contacts
And I don’t want to change.
So, I guess, I’m okay with things just kind of deteriorating over time
And I think that’s what happens with most of our lives.
We think, nah, I’ll figure it out on my own.
My marriage will work itself out.
I’m not gonna go get help, cuz to go get help is to admit I have a problem.
My addiction.. My anger problem. My depression, It’ll work itself out
I’m not gonna talk to anyone in my house group, or a friend, or a professional about it.
Cuz to ask for help, is admitting, that I need Help. That I can’t do it on my own.
So just like I never go to the eye doctor, we never really fix anything in our lives, and we just let the slow fade continue…
Every once in a while we try to fix something on our own, but we were never meant to do it in our own strength, so it usually doesn’t work.
And to compound the issue, our lives are so busy, that it all happens in such a blur
It’s such a blur, that we’ve almost become NUMB to the pain in our lives, the lack of change in our lives, and the lack of LIFE in our lives.
That the only way we can ever even see it is if we press PAUSE…and look out 5 years into the future.
Then we can all see, that yeah, we would be yelling at ourselves to finally stand up and DO SOMETHING about it.
But right now… in the fast paced, blur of a merry-go-round that we all ride on, we can’t see the answer, so we just keep on trying on our own once in a while, but mostly just ignoring the problem.
This life has been such a blur, that we’ve never noticed that the answer has been right in front of us all along
THE BLIND MAN
Here it is. Let’s look to God’s Word. The Bible.
(Luke 18:35-43) – NIV
35 As Jesus approached Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging. 36 When he heard the crowd going by, he asked what was happening. 37 They told him, “Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.” 38 He called out, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” 39 Those who led the way rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” 40 Jesus stopped and ordered the man to be brought to him. When he came near, Jesus asked him, 41 “What do you want me to do for you?” “Lord, I want to see,” he replied. 42 Jesus said to him, “Receive your sight; your faith has healed you.” 43 Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus, praising God. When all the people saw it, they also praised God.
So the blind man inquires, “What’s going on? What’s all the commotion about?”
And they tell him, “It’s Jesus. He’s PASSING BY.”
And here it is. This is the blind man’s moment. His opportunity.
Obviously, by his reaction, he had heard of Jesus. That he could heal, that he was the Savior.
He calls him “Son of David,” which was a term they used for the messiah, the savior, the Son of God.
He’s heard it’s true, that this is the one that could finally CHANGE his life.
And as that opportunity sits in front of him (as Jesus is “PASSING BY”), he’s got a choice to make:
He can YELL out for Jesus
OR, he can keep doing the same old.
The road he sat on, from Jericho to Jerusalem was a common one for beggars to sit on as people went on their pilgrimages to Jerusalem .
He’s got the option to keep relying on himself:
Just continue begging like usual.
That was kind of working, right? He was still alive, wasn’t he? He had made it this long.
His sight had failed so much so now, that he was blind.
But, people helped him every once in a while.
He was kind of making it on his own…
But this is an opportunity for fundamental change!
The savior of the world is PASSING BY!
But if he gets up, if he starts shouting out, there’s no turning back!
The crowd’s gonna mock him, people are going to ridicule him. It’s a risk. This is FAITH.
And the blind man doesn’t really know how it’s gonna turn out…but it’s TIME TO PUT HIS FAITH IN SOMEONE ELSE BESIDES HIMSELF!
So he gets up and shouts out! “JESUS! SON OF DAVID! HAVE MERCY ON ME!”
And Jesus, not only has mercy on Him, He forgives Him, He restores his sight, and the blind man, now a new person, doesn’t just say “Thanks,” he gets up and follows Jesus!
Let me be honest with you like few probably are: For far too many of us, the next 5 years are just going to continue to be the same
We are human. And our ability to bring change in our own lives is severely limited.
We need God.
Every 12 step program you can think of, every marriage recovery program, anything related to bringing change…is founded on the bedrock of this principle: WE…NEED…JESUS.
And right now…RIGHT NOW…He’s passing you by.
What are you going to do about it?
You can sit here for another 5 years, and do the same old, or you can cry out and get help.
You can think, “well, maybe it’ll get better. Maybe I’ll figure it out.”
BUT IF WE WANT TO CHANGE, WE NEED TO PRESS PAUSE AND LET JESUS HELP US CHANGE. Otherwise we just keep drifting through year by year…kind of bothered by it…kind of not…we attempt to change…but not really.
But we just don’t have that much power to change us (it’s not in us).
So, how do you create a different YOU for 5 years from now???
Stop trying to “fix yourself”
Too many of us never change over 5-year periods.
It’s like, we walk around every day, and we see that we’re bleeding.
But we’re too busy to go to the doctor.
So, we just keep putting on a new band-aid every day.
But if the future you could talk to you, they’d say, “GO SEE THE DOCTOR!”
Just like the Future Me would probably say about my eyes. Go see the Eye Doctor. So you can see again.
But in life…the Doctor is JESUS!
And he can do more than just give you glasses…he can make you see again.
He can make you live again. You can experience life again.
He can CHANGE YOUR LIFE.
And let Him. Change your Future Now.
I beg you to wake up from the auto-pilot of your life, see Jesus walking by, and call out to Him!
For some of you that already know Jesus, grab on to Him now.
Let this be the year in your life where REAL change finally happens.
Where the FUTURE YOU is finally going to look different.
Where you courageously stand up from the crowd, and start following the healer, start walking with him, start letting him change every ounce of who you are.
And if you’re just starting to check out Jesus, and you don’t have a relationship with Him yet, know, that right now, he’s walking by.
And you can call out to Him.
And He can CHANGE YOUR LIFE.
And not only change it, but save it.
See, 2,000 years ago, Jesus LITERALLY came to earth and died on the cross to take our place.
Because we’re not good enough. We sin against God. All the time.
It’s part of why, we never really change over time.
We’re sinful, broken people.
And punishment is what we justly deserve.
We’ve never done ANYTHING to deserve ETERNITY in HEAVEN with God.
In fact, we deserve the opposite.
But God, in His love for you, FOR YOU, sent His Son Jesus…to die in your place.
This is what the Bible’s all about. IT’s what Christianity is all about.
That Jesus came to die for you!
Because He loves you and wants to forgive you and change your life and have you follow Him!
And that’s the offer that sits before you right now…
He’s passing by! And you’ve got an offer out there to follow Him or keep trying to do this on your own.
(John 1:12) – NIV
Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God
The Bible says that if we RECEIVE Jesus into our lives and believe in what He did, we can become his Children
That is: To be forgiven…for EVERYTHING you ever done and spend ETERNITY with Him in heaven.
And it’s not just to BELIEVE. The Bible says, even the demons believe in God. But have you ever committed to following Him? Have you received Him?
That’s to see him PASSING BY, get up, and say, “I want to follow! To receive Him in. Let him open your eyes. And follow Him.”
And I want to give you that opportunity this morning.
He’s passing by. Will you receive Christ into your life to let HIM start changing you? Or will you just go on with life as normal? And let him pass by?
That’s your choice.
But, if today, you want CHANGE, you want LIFE, you want FORGIVNESS…if you want Jesus to be your leader and forgiver
To believe He died for you and follow Him…
I want to give you the chance to do that right now.
Here’s what we’re going to do.
Let’s all bow our heads and close our eyes…as I want this to be a special moment between you and God.
If you want to follow Jesus today, and believe that He died on the cross for you…I want to give you the opportunity to tell Him that you believe.
The Bible tells us in Romans 10:9 that if we confess with our mouths and believe in our hearts, we will be saved
That’s all it takes…just for you to say, “God. I believe now. I’ll follow you”
And when we do that…cross the line of faith…
And for some of you in this room. It’s TIME. Right now. Not another five years of doing it on your own.
It’s time to RECEIVE him in. And follow Jesus.
Would you tell Him that right now?
Let’s make it official.
Just like the blind man, had a moment where he got up and followed.
If you want to believe and start following Jesus…(you want to make him your leader & forgiver), I want you, just like the blind man, to stand up where you are. Right now.
Don’t just keep begging by the road for another 5 years. Jesus is passing you by. Get up!
No different than holding up your hand.
Let’s make it official
I’ll give you a moment.
If you’re standing, would you pray this prayer with me…
It’s not a magic prayer…but just a prayer to tell God where you’re at…and the Bible says, we 1) believe in our hearts and 2) confess with our mouths.
So I want you to say it out loud with me. Repeat after me.
IN fact, there are a lot of other believers already in the room, and this is what we believe.
So, let’s all say it together with these new believers.
EVERYONE repeat after me with these new believers.
I confess to you, that I have sinned against you.
And that I have fallen short
But God, I believe, that you sent your Son Jesus, to take my place
And God, I thank you, for forgiving my sins.
And now I commit, to following you, with my life.
Thank you God. Amen.
AMEN!! (you can have a seat) Let’s just clap and praise God.
Let me thank Him and pray.
If you gave your life to Christ today, I need you to do just 1 thing for me
At the end of the service, I need you to head to the back of the room, and we’re going to give you a gift to help you get started in your relationship with Christ. So awesome!
Won’t take you long at all, but it’s important that you have direction in where to go next.
Copyright: David Sorn
Renovation Church in Blaine, MN
You may use this material all you like! We only ask that you do not charge a fee and that you quote the source and not say it is your own.