I. Where do I even start?
You have made a mess of something that is so big you're not sure it can ever be cleaned up.
Three things you can do:
Shut the door, ignore it.
You can blame others.
You can be honest
You ignored somebody's advice, you ignored your conscience, you ignored your parents, you ignored your best friend, you ignored God, you ignored the people that were telling you the truth. You even ignored yourself.
This mess is my fault. Even if I didn’t start it. A lot of this mess is mine.
Remember: Your mess is the mess that brought God near.
John 3:16-17 (NIV) - For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
Jesus came not to point at your mess and say you failed but to save you from that mess.
God is saving Christians all the time.
Finances, relationships, academic life, professional life, something going on in your marriage, something going on with your parents, trouble with the law
Romans 1:16 - For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes…
The amazing thing and the thing I don't want you to miss, and no matter how messy your life is, and how much of it's your fault, here's what Jesus offered these messy people, that Jesus offers you. He offered himself as the solution.
John 3:17 (NIV) - For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
II. Embrace His plan / Way
He invites us to follow him while we are still messy
Romans 5:8 (NLT) - But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.
He invites us to follow Him because He’s the way through.
Two things we have to do to embrace His plan:
Leave your life of sin
Stop making messes. If you find yourself in a hole stop digging.
If you follow His plan he will lead you in the way everlasting.
Surrender to the plan.
John 8:12 (NLT) - Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness but will have the light of life.”
To follow is to surrender, to take new leadership of your life.
To follow Jesus is not to say a prayer that consents to the facts of the gospel.
Matthew 7:21-23 - “Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Only those who actually do the will of my Father in heaven will enter. 22 On judgment day many will say to me, ‘Lord! Lord! We prophesied in your name and cast out demons in your name and performed many miracles in your name.’ 23 But I will reply, ‘I never knew you. Get away from me, you who break God’s laws.’
This moment we are all standing in the garage and we have all kinds of plans of what we should do first. All we do is move the mess from side to side until you start where he wants.
Acts 26 :16-18 - ‘Now get up and stand on your feet. I have appeared to you to appoint you as a servant and as a witness of what you have seen and will see of me. 17 I will rescue you from your own people and from the Gentiles. I am sending you to them 18 to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.
Does that mean I have to do something to keep being saved? No it means you will do something… The will of the Father. Matt 7.
James 4:7 (NIV) - Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
Submit first or there is no power over the devil. Surrender
He says this, "Whoever follows me." " I'm offering myself as the solution." And then he makes this promise. "I am the light of the world, whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."
III. The Way is a process
Matthew 7:24-26 (NLT) - “Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. 25 Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock. 26 But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. 27 When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash.”
Listen to My teaching
Following what He says is surrendering to His plan, your way. He is going to teach you things along the way. Forgiveness, humility, kindness, peace, how to love those you love and how to love those you hate.
Jesus is saying I want you to begin the process of building your life, your finances, your relationship, your marriage, your parenting, your friendships, your professional life, your academic life. I want you to begin building those areas of your life.
Build them around My teaching. And if you do, I will lead you out of your mess."
“You can't pray your way out of a mess that you have behaved your way into.”
There's no silver bullet. There's no magic prayer.
And God will meet you in the mess. He is not offended by you. He does not condemn you. He sees your mess as an opportunity for you to invite Him in.
You came to Christ last week and now we are right in the middle of your mess. Don’t worry we have been there too. Embrace your mess Christ wants to lead you out of. Sometimes we get stuck. Some of you are right back in the mess again. Meet Him in the garage again. Next week we are talking about what happens sometimes along our way. When things start to get messy again.