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Ministry of Jesus 2 How a Christian Thinks

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Ministry of Jesus 2 - How A Christian Should Think – Mark 1:9-20 NV 2/2/03

OS: A little boy was sitting sadly on the curb beside his lawn mower, when along came a minister riding a bicycle. The minister noticed that the boy appeared discouraged, so he thought he would try to help.

"Hello there!" said the minister. "How would you like to trade your lawn mower for this bicycle?"

"Sure, mister," the little boy responded, and went on his merry way.

A few days later, the boy and the minister crossed paths again. The minister said, "I think you took me on our trade. I keep crankin' that old lawn mower, but it won't start."

"You gotta cuss it," said the little boy.

"Well I can't do that," said the minister. "I'm a preacher. I forgot about cussin' a long time ago."

The little boy answered, "Just keep on crankin', preacher; it'll come back to ya."

I.      We do allow our circumstances to dictate our attitudes to often.

A.   Yesterday we experienced a great example of how attitude can shape a circumstance.

B.    A spokesman for NASA after talking with the families of the victims summed up their statements and feelings, “find the cause, fix it, and fly”.

II.   In the preparation time of Jesus (Baptism, Wilderness Fast, & Calling of the first disciples) we gain some insight into His attitude.

A.   Philippians 2 5 Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:

B.    Mark 1:9-20

III.           Attitude is a choice. It’s how we look at our surroundings.

A.     Three store owners shared adjacent storefronts in the same building. Times were tough. In hopes of picking up sales, the owner of the shop at one end of the building put a sign over his front entrance that said, YEAR-END CLEARANCE!!! At the other end of the building, another owner responded with his own sign: ANNUAL CLOSE-OUT. The owner of the store in the middle knew he had to act fast or he'd lose business. After careful consideration, he hung a larger sign over his front door that read, MAIN ENTRANCE.

B.    When we need an attitude change we simply need to take a step back and take another look at our circumstances.

PQ: What kind of attitude indicators do we find in this preparation time of Jesus for Ministry?

An attitude that said:

I.       I am not focused on what is required, but rather on what is right.

A.   We gain this insight from Matthew’s account of the Baptism of Jesus.

                      1.       Matthew 3 15 Jesus replied, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness.” Then John consented.

                      2.       Jesus had no sin, no reason for baptism. He didn’t need as the others to come to the wilderness confessing His sin and being baptized by John.

B.    Jesus was baptized due to His simple attitude consumed with pleasing the Father.

                      1.       Not, “What do I have to do to get out of this place and be back at the Father’s side in heaven”?

                      2.       But, “How can I please the Father”

                      3.       The way we see our circumstances as Christians should not result in, “What do I have to do to get to heaven” but rather, “How can I please the Father.”

C.   Even with the proper attitude you will face temptation and trial – wilderness

II.    I am focused on time with the Father.

A.   Jesus, with all He had to accomplish, was carried into the wilderness for forty days of fasting and focus on the Father.

                      1.       This speaks volumes about His attitude toward His mission.

                      2.       I am willing to put my life on hold to spend time with the Father.

B.    I believe this in one of the greatest lessons we can learn from Jesus about attitude.

                      1.       We tend to try and fit Christianity in with our schedule, our desires, our wants.

                      2.       “Here is my life, now God fit your will into what I already have going on.  I’ll give you Sunday morning, small group on Sunday night, and even Wednesday night on occasion. And you give me heaven in return.”

                      3.       We punch our clock.

C.   Jesus taught us the right way in His example and His sermon on the mount.

                      1.       Matthew 6 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

D.   Jesus had things right with Himself, now after forty days right with the Father, and now He began reaching out to others.

III. I am focused on helping others know the joy of fellowship with the Father

A.   Jesus immediately began reaching out and selecting some people to have an impact on.

                      1.       All of His ministry is focused on two things: The Father, and People.

                      2.       He spent time with the Father and with People.

                      3.       He came to seek and to save, His business was people. And we should have the same attitude of Jesus.

B.    I want other people to know the joy of  fellowship with the Father.

                      1.       1 John 1 3 We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ.  4 We write this to make our joy complete.

                      2.       Today rendition of that verse: When the co-worker shares his troubles… “God has meant so much to me, let me tell you how He helped me through similar circumstances in my life…”

                      3.       Our relationship with God is so good we can’t help but wish it for others.

IV.Let me close with this truth. The attitudes we see in the ministry of Jesus are attitudes we must develop. Attitude can change.

A.   If you think/act like a Christian, you will act/think like Jesus.

B.    Attitude can change – It’s all in how you look at life.

When I look at a patch of dandelions, I see a bunch of weeds that are going to take over my yard. Kids see flowers for Mom and blowing white fluff you can wish on.

When I look at an old drunk and he smiles at me, I see a smelly, dirty person who probably wants money, and I look away. Kids see someone smiling at them, and they smile back.

When I hear music I love, I know I can't carry a tune and don't have much rhythm, so I sit self-consciously and listen. Kids feel the beat and move to it. They sing out the words, and if they don't know them, they make up their own.

When I feel wind on my face, I brace myself against it. I feel it messing up my hair and pulling me back when I walk. Kids close their eyes, spread their arms, and fly with it, until they fall to the ground laughing.

When I pray, I say "thee" and "thou" and "grant me this" and "give me that." Kids say "Hi, God! Thanks for my toys and my friends. Please keep the bad dreams away tonight. Sorry, I don't want to go to heaven yet. I would miss Mommy and Daddy."

When I see a mud puddle, I step around it. I see muddy shoes and clothes and dirty carpets. Kids sit in it. They see dams to build, rivers to cross, and worms to play with.

I wonder if we are given kids to teach or to learn from? No wonder God loves the little children!

Opening Remarks:

This Mornings Washington Times

Yesterday President Bush addressed the Nation and the families of the victims of the crash of Space Shuttle Columbia: On board was a crew of seven: Col. Rick Husband, Lt. Col. Michael Anderson, Comm. Laurel Clark, Capt. David Brown, Comm. William McCool, Dr. Kalpana Chawla and Ilan Ramon, a colonel in the Israeli air force. These men and women assumed great risk in this service to all humanity.

 "Our entire nation grieves with you," the president assured the families of the seven astronauts who perished aboard Space Shuttle Columbia, which disintegrated in meteoric streaks 207,135 feet over Texas.
     "The cause in which they died will continue," Mr. Bush said. "Mankind is led into the darkness beyond our world by the inspiration of discovery and the longing to understand. Our journey into space will go on."

President Bush looked to the Bible, in Isaiah 40:26, for answers to "this sudden shock and grief."
     "In the words of the prophet Isaiah, 'Lift your eyes and look to the heavens. Who created all these? He who brings out the starry hosts one by one and calls them each by name. Because of His great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing.'
     "The same Creator who names the stars also knows the names of the seven souls we mourn today," Mr Bush said. "The crew of the Shuttle Columbia did not return safely to Earth; yet we can pray that all are safely home."

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