Fellowship of Word and Spirit – bible reading 2

FOWS2013Chris Green’s second bible talk at Fellowship of Word and Spirit concerns the balance between ambitious prayer and the work of God.

SMART goals – big churches – ministry goals and strategic thinking
These things can be useful but they can also become toxic. Poisonous.

Pride if things go well
False guilt when things go badly

Dark places can emerge in life where cicumstances are v. hard and you ask “what is the point of prayer, if God does not hear, answer and bless us through our prayers.”

2 Thessalonians 1

If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans (this saying is trite nonsense, we’ll see why).
If you want to make God smile, listen to his plans.

Plan part A. Warning of judgement for those who don’t believe and obey (faith in Christ and obedience to Christ are linked – salvation from sin leads to a heart of obedience). 2 Thess 1:5-9
Plan part B. Hope of salvation which will glorify God. 2 Thess 1:10

We are therefore allowed to tell God our plans and desires – verse 11 – by his power he may fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith.

Faith in Christ and salvation prompts good purposes – I intend to do this and that, I have intensions to glorify God with my life, our futures.

Verse 12 – We pray this so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.

We honour God when we ask God to honour our plans to bring honour to him.

Some things are rightly God’s work, and we should not make them ours.

We are intending to do this plan for your glory, please will you honour our plans.

We are not to think:
all I do is pray and God does the rest.

We should dare to be ambitious and have great plans.
God has told us his plans so that we can be bold in our plans.

BeHAGS – Big Hairy Audacious Goals [a small group on every street in the parish?]

Every good purpose

What is your purpose with regard to your area?

Lost being found – how?
Found being built – how?
Engagement – contending for the faith – resisting – pray and what act prompted by faith and a good purpose look like?

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