Title: KNOWING WHERE GOD IS AT WORK
Text: Isa. 46:11; 14:24, 27
As you look back, can you identify times when God was trying to get your attention to reveal where He was at work? If you don’t recognize it at the beginning, sometimes it slides right on by us and we miss the opportunity to join God in His work. We need a more sensitive heart to respond to God’s slightest prompting.
So, my goal this morning is to help you recognize where God is working so you can join Him. If we are going to join Him, we need to know where God is working. The Bible tells us there are things only God can do. We need to identify them, then when we see them, we can know with confidence that that is God’s activity. Let’s pause right now and ask God to open our spiritual eyes so we can know when He’s at work. PRAY!
The first thing we need to do is…
I. LOOK FOR THINGS ONLY GOD CAN DO
A. John 6:44 says that no one can come to Christ except that the Father draws him. That means no one pursues spiritual things unless God is at work in their life.
B. So, when you have a friend asking about spiritual things, you know God is working in them.
C. Jesus was always looking for where the Father was working, even in crowds. The crowd is not the harvest field…the harvest field is within the crowd! Lk. 19:1-5
1. Jesus saw the harvest field in the crowd…it was sitting in the tree.
2. Maybe he thought, “Nobody would seek after Me with that kind of earnestness unless My Father is at work in his heart.” So Jesus singled him out of the crowd to have a divine encounter with him.
3. The result is that salvation came to Zacchaeus’ entire household that night!
Application: Folks, salvation will result when you join the activity of God in someone to whom you see the Holy Spirit working!
D. Where else can we look for the work of God? John 16:8
1. When you see someone under conviction about their sin…desiring to be righteous, but know they are not…or feeling fear about a coming judgment…beloved, jump on the wagon, because God is at work!
Application: What is God doing where you work? In your home? In your neighborhood? Is the Holy Spirit prompting you of someone He is working in right now? I urge you to join His work…He is wanting to draw them to the Father and He needs your help!
E. Yes, Ralph, I see God working! How do I join Him? You start by praying! Ask the Father to show you want He is doing; ask for doors of opportunity to share with them; pray for opportunities to minister to them in love.
1. After you get off your knees, watch to see what God does next!
2. Watch to see what they say when they come to you.
3. Folks, what we need to do is to make the connection between our prayers and what happens next! If we don’t make the connection, we will miss the answer to our prayer…we will miss the door of opportunity!
F. Next, ask probing questions that will reveal what is happening in their life. (Write these down!)
1. How can I pray for you?
2. Do you want to talk?
3. What is your greatest challenge?
4. What is the most significant thing happening in your life right now?
5. What is God bringing to surface in your life?
6. Has God laid a burden on you?
G. Next, listen for statements that reveal God’s work in their life; that God may be causing them to seek after Jesus, or bringing them under conviction of their sin.
H. Then be ready to make whatever adjustments are necessary to join God in what He is doing!
II. WHAT GOD INITIATES, HE COMPLETES
A. When you see God working in your life, or someone else’s, you can be assured that what He initiates, He will complete. Isa. 46:11; 14:24, 27
B. God says that if He ever lets His people know what He is about to do…it’s as good as done! God will bring it to pass! 1 Kings 8:54-56; Phil. 1:6
C. What God speaks, He guarantees it will come to pass!
Application: Do you understand the implications of what I just said? That means when He tells you what He is going to do, you can move forward in confidence because He’s going to complete it!!
III. WHEN GOD REVEALS, RESPOND IMMEDIATELY
A. When God spoke to Moses, what he did next was crucial. After Jesus spoke to the disciples, what they did next was crucial. What you do next after God reveals what He is about to do…is crucial!
B. Don’t be like Moses and go into a long discussion as to why you can’t join Him! That mistake limited Moses for the rest of his life! Instead of being the spokesman, Moses had to speak through his brother Aaron to the people.
C. Beloved, listen to me carefully: I urge you to carefully consider what God is saying to you on a regular basis. If God speaks and you hear but do not respond, a time could come when you will not hear His voice! Disobedience can lead to a “famine of hearing the words of God.” Amos 8:11-12
D. Let Samuel be your example of listening and responding to every word God gives you: 1 Sam. 3:19 Don’t let a single word from the Lord fail to bring adjustments in your life! Then God will do in you, and through you everything He says.
Let me conclude with an insight from one of Jesus’ parables. In Luke 8 is the parable of the sower and the seeds. The seed that fell on the good soil represented one who heard the word of God, retained it, and produced fruit. Now, listen carefully to Jesus’ words about His application of the parable: Lk. 8:15-18 *v.18
If you hear the Word of God and do not apply it to produce fruit in your life, even what you think you have will be taken away! Be careful how you listen to God! Determine now that when the Spirit of God speaks, you are going to do what He says!
Listen to the words of the prophet Malachi: “’I the Lord do not change…From the days of your fathers you have turned aside from My statutes and have not kept them. Return to Me, and I will return to you,’ says the LORD of hosts.”
The promise of the Lord of hosts is that if you change your heart, and listen to the prompting of the Holy Spirit, He will return once again to whisper His will in your ear!
Oh, beloved! Don’t miss out on the moving of our mighty God! Soften your heart…tune your ear…and make a determination of your will to join the work of God!