Saturday, April 19, 2014

The Greatest Season of the Year

I love Resurrection Day (AKA Easter) - it truly is my favorite time of the year, and the most introspective. I this take time every year to do an inventory on myself - I don't always like what I find. My lacking, or being weighed, measured, and being found wanting only adds more value to the cross. It is my greatest need. Too many people rush to carry it without considering first what it cost Jesus, and what it costs us.

Take some time and evaluate yourself - your true self - and express your appreciation for His love for you ... that's what I do.  Please continue reading ...

You see, this is my favorite holiday because without it, the other holidays really have no meaning. Christmas, Valentine's Day, Saint Patrick's Day, All Saint's Day and Hallowed Eve (AKA Halloween), even our own independence day have no value without the cross of Jesus. We are quick to dream of the success of what we define "carrying the cross" to mean - the glamour of showing everybody how hard it was for Him - we even carry crosses so everyone can know who we are ... but for many of us, according to the Bible, we will be told by Jesus Himself, "Depart from me, I never knew you." The thought of that is terrifying.

Mat 7:21-23 "Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, 'Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?' 23 And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!'
Paul also says it like this:

2 Corinthians 13:5  Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you are disqualified. 

I am constantly examining myself.  I am His, and He is mine ... and I am ever thankful!

Since we are in the season I thought that a series I preached on Paul's Mission Statement, or Anthem, (Phillipians 3:8-11) would be a good subject. Paul spoke of mastering the four characteristics of a powerful and effective walk in Christ ... what did he mean?

Click on the following links for the sermon outlines I wrote in regard to Paul's mission statement. I hope these resources serve you personally as well as those who are following your lead.
They are formatted in MS Word so you can edit them for your own personal use ... I do that on purpose.  Feel free to look around for other outlines you may find helpful - It's there to be used! Enjoy ... and Happy Easter.

Pat Hazard

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