Are you Ready for Service?
There is a splendid moment in the movie Jurassic Park, when world-class paleontologist Allen Grant, who has devoted his life to the study of dinosaurs, suddenly comes face-to-face with real, live prehistoric creatures. He falls to the ground, dumbstruck. The reason is obvious. It is one thing to piece together an informed but nonetheless imperfect image of dinosaurs by picking through fossils and bones. But to encounter an actual dinosaur—well, there can be no comparison.
For many people, spirituality amounts to picking through the artifacts of faith that survive from long ago and far away. In that bygone era, humans saw God, heard his voice, and experienced his awesome, at times terrible, power. But that was then. Today, those kinds of gripping encounters with God—with a God who wasn't an illusion, but Someone who was real, Someone you could see, and touch, and feel—well, there could be no comparison.
Citation: William D. Hendricks, Exit Interviews (Chicago: Moody, 1993)
Isaiah is one of the most significant of Old Testament books. Isaiah spoke out to Judah during the critical years of Assyrian expansion, when the Northern Kingdom, Israel, was destroyed. Isaiah is especially significant for (1) his revelation of God through powerful, vital names (such as Holy One, God the Judge, etc.); for (2) his clear vision of Jesus the Messiah; for (3) his Servant theme; and (4) for his powerful visions of history’s end. The book of Isaiah is a miniature of the bible in that there are 39 divisions in the first part and 27 in the second half of the book. The sins of the people are so great that God issues an invitation, who will go for Us, and whom shall we send. The Triune God is interested in willing workers.
I want you to assess your readiness to serve based on 1). A Personal Experience, 2). A Personal Evaluation and 3). A Personal Enlisting.
I. A Personal Experience
a. The Vision
b. The Voice
c. The Volume
Abraham had a faith challenge experience
Esther had a courage challenge experience
Saul had a Damascus experience
Job had an illness and betrayal experience
Ruth had a commitment experience
Joseph had an envious family experience
Hezekiah had wall of wellness experience
Mary had a Holy Spirit impregnation experience
Hosea had a promiscuous wife experience
Esau had a deception experience
David had a sin experience
David had a stalking experience
Naaman had a Jordan River experience
Jeremiah had a dungeon experience
Nehemiah had a wall building experience
Ezra had a temple rebuilding experience
Elijah had a Mt. Carmel experience
Jesus had a Calvary experience
II. A Personal Evaluation
a. The Circumstance
b. The Coals
c. The Cleansing
What is man that Thou art so mindful of him?
Lord Teach us how to number our days that we may know how frail we are
Man that is born of a woman is of a few days and full of trouble.
Search me Oh God, try me and see if there be any wicked way in me.
III. A Personal Enlisting
a. I am a Volunteer
b. I am a Vessel
c. I am Valuable
1. I am available
2. I am anointed
3. I am assigned
Joshua says, “but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
Elijah says, “Choose ye this day whom you will serve.”
Jesus says, “He that desires to be great, let him be chief servant.”
No man can serve two Masters, you must choose one.
There is a story told of a pig and a cow. The pig bragged about how when he died, people would benefit from his death, pig feet, pig ears, chitterlings, etc. The cow said that I don’t have to wait until I die to be of service! I provide milk all over the world and when I die, I will provide steaks, burgers, neck bones, etc.
You don’t have to wait until you die to be affective
You don’t have to wait until you die to be a blessing
You don’t have to wait until you die to be a cure
You don’t have to wait until you die to be distinguished
You don’t have to wait until you die to be effective
You don’t have to wait until you die to be faithful
You don’t have to wait until you die to be grateful
You don’t have to wait until you die to be helpful
You don’t have to wait until you die to be innovative
You don’t have to wait until you die to be joyous
You don’t have to wait until you die to know the King!