Sunday, March 2, 2014

Keep The Bacon Hot!

Bacon comes out of the pan hot and greasy!  If it's not eaten quickly, it gets cold and the grease cakes up! Don't let your grease cake up!  Stay hot!

Acts 4:13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus.

Romans 12:11 Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord;

Keep your fire burning for God. 
  • Simply stated, do not keep a spiritual “air” about you without being truly spiritual.
  • If there are areas of your walk with the Lord that are shallow or empty, deal with them. If you need to ask for someone’s forgiveness and repent – then do it!
  • Sometimes when we see people get on fire, we get a little intimidated by it. We think “What can they teach me that I haven’t already learned?” and we become guilty of sitting in the back of the church, acting like we’ve heard it all before.
A wise person can learn from anyone. 
  • We need to realize we can learn from other people instead of letting their fervor and passion intimidate you. Let it push you to deeper levels of humility and intimacy with God, and more passionate times of mediating and reading His Word.
  • When you have a genuine fire burning passionately for God, other people in our life cannot help but be affected. When your relationship with God becomes stale, everyone in your house has the potential to have a heart that will grow cold. 
Start having honest discussions! 
  • Do not try to be pseudo-spiritual with people because they will interpret it as fake, but seek God with more fervor than you ever have.
Let me speak to parents...
  • If your student is going after God with all they’ve got, you have to go after Him even harder to provide true spiritual leadership for them.
  • As you share with them your prayer concerns, your struggles, and your victories in your walk with the Lord, your child will do the same with you.
  • You will be on the road of a discipling relationship with your teen. But do not assume that now that they are on fire for God or that they will stay that way forever.
  • The fire must continually be fanned and encouraged in order for it to be kept burning.
We need mutual accountability!
  • We need people to hold us accountable to certain areas of our life...not so they can throw it in our face later, but so that we can show a little trust and respect.
  • When most people who get the fire of God in their life start losing it, they don’t want anyone to know, so they cover it up in the darkness. But when the light comes in, it reveals the darkness for what it is. If you show the darkness for what it is before it becomes a problem, the darkness has no opportunity to become a stronghold.
  • Being accountable to one another will take the friendship intimacy factor to a whole new level in our relationship with other people.
You can't always be on the mountain!
  • A fallacy many people buy into is thinking we always live on the top of a spiritual mountain.
  • We put expectations on ourselves and other people put them on us as well to make us think we have to stay on the mountaintop forever and ever and hope it never goes away.
  • First of all, you cannot just hope – you must do something to keep the fire burning. Do not presume you will stay on fire forever by accident.
Look at the story of Jesus on the mount of transfiguration. 
  • Jesus went up there to pray and have His quiet time, not necessarily to get transfigured.
Luke 9:28-29 28And it came to pass about an eight days after these sayings, he took Peter and John and James, and went up into a mountain to pray. 29And as he prayed, the fashion of his countenance was altered, and his raiment was white and glistering.
  • When Jesus was praying on the mountaintop, the presence of God appeared. Moses and Elijah were there having a conversation with him. The disciples got so excited, they said, “Lord, Lord, do you want us to build a house for the three of you so you can stay around?” 
  • This is what happens when we encounter God – we want to institutionalize it. We want to remember that encounter forever and ever and hope it will never end.
Luke 9:35 And there came a voice out of the cloud, saying, This is my beloved Son: hear him.
  • In other words, “Quit talking, man! Check out what is going on”
  • I am told that since this writing in the Bible, Christians have gone to the top of that mountain (Mount Tabor) and have built a church for Jesus with two rooms – one for Moses and one for Elijah.
  • Does this surprise you?  It doesn't me.  We've been doing the same thing in Christianity for years!  We have built whole churches and entire denominations on ONE EXPERIENCE with God!

There is not supposed to just be a mountaintop!
  • We are supposed to go back again and again into the presence of God!
  • We are not supposed to hope we stay on that mountain, but that we get taken to the next mountain!

Ask yourself this today...
  • What’s the next challenge in my life? 
  • What’s the next area God wants me to grow in?
  • Maybe it’s going on a mission trip. 
  • Maybe it’s doing ministry in the inner city. 
  • Maybe there are areas of our character God wants to refine.
Ask this question...
  • “Why did He give you that fire and what is the next mountain God wants you to climb?”

We must consider the NEXT STEP in our spiritual journey. We have been given a FIRE for a reason.  God wants to do something in us and through us. When see there is another mountain to climb, we'll throw our PASSION and FERVOR into climbing that next mountain, not just try to keep the fire we already have. In going up that next mountain, our fire will BUILD and BECOME stable and strong!