Monday, July 18, 2011

this is confidence

Before I share today's thought with you, I want to let you know that we are still signing up students for our back2school outreach that is taking place Saturday, August 6th.  To register simply call the church at 276-647-8231.  Donations, volunteers and students who need this outreach are needed!!!  Students will receive brand new shoes and socks, backpacks and school supplies, clothes and haircuts as well as each one will have their feet washed by one of our volunteers who will take to them about having real hope in life.  Will you pray for this outreach event?  Will you support and help this event?  Let me know, and thank you to those who have and those who will be underwriting this effort with your prayers and resources.

On to today's thought...

I am preaching through a series called FEARLESS at The Community Fellowship, and it is going well.  We are talking about people from the Old Testament who faced fear head on.  This week we took a look at Shadrach, Meshach and Abenego.  3 incredible guys to say the least.

To make a long story short (see Daniel 3 for the complete story) these guys were offered an ultimatum as was everyone in Babylon at that time.  Everyone was to bow and worship the idol that King Nebuchadnezzar built to honor himself.  It was huge being 90 feet tall and 9 feet wide, but these 3 men would not budge and would not worship.  What they said to the king is awesome.  Follow along with me....

Daniel 3:16-18 NLT
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego replied, "O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you.  If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God whom we serve is able to save us. He will rescue us from your power, Your Majesty. But even if he doesn't, we want to make it clear to you, Your Majesty, that we will never serve your gods or worship the gold statue you have set up."

Hear what they said, how they said it and the strength behind it.  This is confidence.  By the way, answering a king this way and not doing what the king said to do could get you killed.  Not only were they threatened with being thrown into a fiery furnace if they didn't bow down, there were many other things that could happen to them.

1.  they said there is no need to answer the king.  This is confidence.  Without saying much, they said that God is more important than the king.

2.  they said that "the God whom we serve is able to save us".  This is confidence.  They had a personal experience with God and knew what He was capable of.

3.  they said that God would rescue them from the king.  This is confidence.  God would rescue them.  God is more powerful than the king too.

4.  they said, and maybe the most important thing over all, that "even if he doesn't...we will never serve your gods".  This is confidence.  They were set.  Literally, HECK NO we will not worship your gods or you.  No matter what we will serve God.

The "no matter what" statement is one that clarifies a person's faith in God.  No matter what these 3 men had confidence and faith in God who would see them through whatever the king put them through.  Before they were asked to bow, they had a plan to trust and follow God.  That is, this is confidence.

What happens when you or I face a possible fiery furnace?  Will people see and hear that we trust God no matter what happens.

See the end of the story.  The 3 men went into the fire that was hotter than it had ever been before.  They were not touched by fire and didn't even smell like smoke when they walked out of the fire.

When we place our faith in God, God shows up in big ways.  This is confidence.  I want to have confidence and faith like this.  How about you?

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happy birthday, Julie

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