In her first sermon of 2019, Eirwen brings a word about getting to know Jesus and becoming like Him. Beginning her sermon, she says that God and how He works is amazing. Following on from Andrea and Pastor Phyl, she said that we would basically be hearing the same message three times.
Talking about the verse that underpins her sermon, Proverbs 16:9, she said that it is a hyperbole. It says quite clearly that there is the path that you are meant to walk. It is perfectly normal for us to make plans, but we must be aware of God’s plans for us. In James 4:13, it tells us that we are wasting energy in worrying about tomorrow, because we cannot control what happens.
The thing is that the path is sometimes rocky, but God is steady and He will keep us from falling. It says in Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” Here we see, clearly God’s plan for us. He knows it, and He will make it happen.
This is shown in scripture. Jeremiah was in slavery for 70 years, but God had a plan for him and He was working on it. We must remember that God is always working for us, even when it doesn’t feel like it. All we must do is trust.
This is the plan of God:
“For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. And those he predestined, he also called; and those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified” Romans 8:28-29. This is the plan of God! That we become like His son.
We get so anxious about the plan of God in our lives, but we just need to live our lives. It doesn’t matter what we do, if it isn’t a part of God’s plan, then it won’t happen.
Eirwen went on to say that God isn’t calling us to simply work in Church. He is calling us to live our lives for the good of Him and His people. Our call is to be Christ-like. If we live like God, then we will be following the path.
In Genesis 13, we see Abraham and Lot separate. Abraham was the patriarch, and had the right to choose which way he would go, but he hands it all over to Lot. He was a man of faith, and men of faith don’t care how stony the ground is because they have God on their side.
The outcome of his decision is that Lot chooses the ground that is lush and green, but he ends up in Sodom, while Abraham is left with the stony ground with nothing growing on it. However, it is Abraham that God calls His friend. This is what faith does! It turns us into a friend of God. Abraham was blessed, because he had faith.
However, we also see in this section of scripture that God doesn’t punish is for our bad decisions, as, even when God is about to destroy Sodom, He still sends angels to rescue Lot, after Abraham pleads his case. Our mistakes don’t keep us out from the love of God.
Sometimes we can feel that there’s no hope, but God can rectify our mistakes. That is grace at work. We must fight for our faith sometimes. God promises to fix things, and He will move heaven and earth to make us who we are meant to be. God won’t take His hands off us, and He won’t leave us. He wants us to do amazing things, and trusts us to do them.
Eirwen then asked, “How can we look at people and criticise them, when God doesn’t criticise us?” God will bring us through the worst of things and He never lets us down.
It says in scripture that all we need is faith, hope and love, but it is quite clear that the greatest of these is love. The truth is that nothing supersedes love. Everything must always end in love. Because God is love, and as we become more like Him, we must also love, too.
We must, however, make sure that we speak of love in a way that keeps God in the picture because otherwise, we become human centred. We end up focusing on doing good, and when we get solely caught up in doing good, we lose God. Sometimes we take Christ out of the picture, and still think that we’re doing good, but our hope is always in Christ! We must remember that humanism is not Christianity.
If we follow God as He directs us on this path, then that is love, because it is in obedience that we find love.
Eirwen encouraged us, in closing, to not worry about the stones on our path, but to just look forward and trust God to bring us through. We must believe, like Abraham did, and walk the path.
We are called to simply obey Him, and He will make things right for us.
Scriptures: Proverbs 16:9, James 4:13, Jeremiah 29:11, Romans 8:28-29, Genesis 13, 1 Corinthians 13:13.