March 10, 2019
Sermon Series: Christ in Me
“Only Jesus” CD by Casting Crowns
“Only Jesus Devotional”
by Pastor Mark Hall
With Tim Luke
Psalm 91:1-2, 9-16
“Only Jesus” Casting Crowns
What is Your Legacy?
Let us pray…pray for the Spirits leading
A reading from the book of Acts, chapter 20 verse 24. Hear the words of Paul as he proclaims the purpose of all who believe…
Acts 20:24 The Voice (VOICE)
24 But that’s OK. That’s no tragedy for me because I don’t cling to my life for my own sake. The only value I place on my life is that I may finish my race, that I may fulfill the ministry that Jesus our King has given me, that I may gladly tell the good news of God’s grace.
Good morning. This is the first Sunday…the first step on our journey towards the cross. Lent is a time of soul searching and confession as we search our hearts and prepare it for the new life, we rise to on Resurrection Sunday. We think about what Jesus did for us. We contemplate the great love that was shown on Calvary’s Cross for you and me.
I am so thankful for what this season stands for. I am so thankful for the gift that I am offered. As my gratitude overflows, I can’t help but think of how I can somehow…in some way…thank God and Jesus for the unmerited grace that this sin-sick soul received and continues to receive. This grace that is new each day dawning…is something I can’t do without. So, I figured I would be a faithful follower. I am going to live my life for Jesus. No matter what I am going to be out there do His work, no matter what that looks like. Then I received the epiphany…many years later…
Have you ever read something or heard something that makes you stop in your tracks and question all that you believed? Have you ever had that epiphany moment that brings you to your knees in:
- Awe and wonder
- Asking for forgiveness for being so blind
- Wanting to rededicate your life
- All of the Above…
Mine was a number 4. It happened in the middle of a concert. As I listened to the lead singer…who is also a pastor…speak I was brought to tears. You see…I had been living my life for Jesus. I am a professed “Sold Out Chick for Jesus”. There is nothing that I would not do for Him… Except one thing I held back from the One I professed to be my All-In-All… I have been living my life for Jesus but not letting Him live His life through me… Are you living for Christ or are you letting Christ live through you?
We are here at the beginning of the time when we journey to the place of redemption…where God’s greatest work was done…to the place where we surrender ourselves to the One who surrendered Himself for all of humanity. But what does it look like when we begin to become the glove that the hand of our Savior can wear for His glory? What does it look like when we surrender ourselves and not live for Jesus but let Jesus live through us? I want Christ to be seen in me but is it more important for Christ to be seen through me? One is about me…the other about Christ…
In His devotional “Only Jesus”, Pastor…and lead singer of Casting Crowns…Mark Hall talks about just that…what does it mean to let Jesus live through us. What it looks like as we surrender ourselves to the one who surrendered Himself for you and me. It is a powerful and life changing devotional… This is going to be our guide as we travel this season together.
So as we begin that journey from self to Jesus, we need to look at our motives…why we do what we do. In this world, we are told that we need to leave a legacy. My question is, what or whose legacy are we leaving?
Legacy, Merriam-Webster Dictionary gives us this definition:
1: a gift by will especially of money or other personal property.
2: something transmitted by or received from an ancestor or predecessor or from the past.
3: a candidate for membership in an organization (such as a school or fraternal order) who is given special status because of a familial relationship to a member
So, essentially, it is something left by someone for future generation…to put it short. So, what is your legacy? Are you and I leaving a legacy with our name or in Jesus’ name? We are told by the world that you have to be someone, leave a name for yourself. My question is this, is that what is most important, is that what you and I are here for, or is there something or someone else that needs to be lifted higher than our ego’s? In God’s Word, He states that we are to “Put no other gods before me.” How are we doing on that…are we putting ourselves and our ego’s before God? Are we needing to open our bibles to refocus ourselves off ourselves and magnify God instead?
As we read God’s Word, we come to realize…if we don’t already…that none of the real heroes of the bible didn’t wake up one day and thought “I want to be a hero.”
†Mary – Had no idea she was going to be called to carry God’s Son. She was just going about doing what she always did…living to magnify God.
†David – Was just taking lunch for his brothers to the battle field. He had no idea that he would slay a giant or eventually become the King of God’s people. He was just a simple shepherd boy who trusted in God.
†Abraham – Lied, took short cuts to get what he thought was best. Trying to live his life for God’s purpose. Through him God blessed the world.
They were even reluctant in some ways…Moses for example… But they knew the secret…there view of themselves was this…I got nothing…I have no business here…they were humble…they weren’t looking to leave a legacy…they were looking to live for God…
Not leaving a legacy goes against the flesh… The scripture I read this morning, Paul states…considers…his life of no value and the only value us to bring Jesus…his life not lived for today but for eternity…not before men but before God and His purposes. Unfortunately, we tend to not be able to be still before God and content to let Jesus live through us. We go after what the world says success is…
- Glorify ourselves
- Elevate the individual
- “Look At ME!”
Beloved, God is always…constantly…reaching out to rescue us from ourselves…our drives…our passion for self…our need to find meaning in the promises of the world. Which by the way is completely opposed to what Jesus modeled…Not my will but Your own… Beloved…all we build…all we have…all we have done…all of our trophies and accolades we have received…is truly nothing but dust when it’s all done…when life is over. The important thing…what we need to strive for is this…, “have our lives been lived in a way that lives out God’s truth to the people we love, and the ones God puts in our path…”?
What is the focus of your legacy? You or Jesus? In the end, all that matters…all that I want to point to…to me…now…the legacy I want to leave is not about me…Only Jesus…
(play “Only Jesus” by Casting Crowns)