Extravagant worship

This a sermon that has been on my heart for awhile, as I have been studying and reading about real worship.


Extravagant Worship Sermon

09/12/2012

*2 Chronicles 20:2-5

A. Jehoshaphat learned of three armies that were planning to take their promised land.

*2 Chronicles 20: 5-9

What was his reaction to the news?  What did he do and say to this?

 

B. Jehoshaphat called all of Judah and Jerusalem to seek God, fast, and worship God!  

     1. The first thing J. did was, get his people together and praise God for his mighty power, promises, and past deliverances.

 

       a. Their praise and prayers were declarations of God’s power and that we have victory through Him, that no enemy can come against.

 

*2 Chronicles 20:18-25

So walking in their knowing and faith they went out to the battle as instructed and J. sent worshippers to the very front line to go before and lead. As they did so, the whole time they were praising God saying, “Give thanks to the Lord, for His love endures forever!”

    2. They were praising God as they faced the battle, for the victory to come!

C.  Praise and Thanksgiving are keys to overcoming our situations. 

     1. When we get news of a problem, we start thanking Him for another opportunity for God’s power to be seen.

 

D. Extravagant Worship is more than an “appetizer” or fast song before the slow sweet “worship” song.

     1. Praise is a declaration! A victory cry! Proclaiming faith to stand firm in the place God has given you!

     2. Praise is a proclamation that the enemy’s attempt to plunder you will not rock you or shake you!

 

E. So when you need the enemy to flee start praising Him, he cannot stay when you start praising Him.

 

F. To praise God doesn’t mean we come to church and just sing during worship.

      1. Extravagant worship is not mediocre, nothing extreme, quiet and safe, as if somehow conformity is more holy.

        a. No! All that is within me will praise His Holy name!

*Psalms 103:1

  A. When King David brought the Ark of the Covenant to the city, he danced wildly through the streets wearing nothing but an under garment!

     1. If he had been half hearted Michal, his wife would not have been so upset.  But because he was wildly praising through the streets with everything, she despised him for the rest of her life.  

     2. Casual worship would not have disturbed anything, but God ask for everything.

        a. sometimes it means looking like a fool, but God wants us to be radical in our worship. Praise the Lord with reckless abandon!

       b. John 12:1-7   Mark 14:3-9 

           1. Mary brought a jar of alabaster perfume worth three years wages, and poured it on Jesus. So extreme was that, that the disciples were indignant.  But Jesus saw how beautiful her reckless, whole hearted worship was.    

    3. We praise Him because He is our victory. And now it has already been paid for. He is so good. Any situation that rises, start praising Him with reckless abandon and you will see your victory come to be.

 

B. Oh, how He loves us.  What love He has lavished on us!

*Psalms 188:1-23

 

*C. All our failures, fears, trials, weakness, sickness, disease, tribulations, every strong hold, every wall that held us back, every thought that told us we couldn’t become the victor, every excuse, every chain, He has overcome!  Praise the Lord our God has overcome! We are not of this world we are Free! 


Praise God for freedom, hope, love, and life!


Cinderella: rags to riches

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to actually be Cinderella? I’m sure almost every little girl has at one point thought about this glorious fairytale, and it is likely most of us long for a fairytale in our lives still. Some of us might even feel like we are Cinderella, enduring incredible hardships and evil step mothers, and we longing for our prince to come galloping in.  I know that I did and still do. It is part of being a woman. We want to be the damsel in distress and have a brave prince come rescue us from our evil step mother’s slavery. I realized a few months ago that something was missing, something very deep in my heart, and it was something very important. So I asked God what it was that I was missing. At first I thought maybe something is seriously wrong with me, but He said that is not it at all. His reply was the answer to my question. It was very clear.

You are my image. Why would I make anything faulty? You are beautiful because I created you to be beauty. You are strong because I am strong. You are healed because I took your sickness and pain. You are forgiven because I paid a price so you could be forgiven. Trust me. Men will break your heart, even your husband will fail at times, But I, I am in love with you and my love never fails.

What He spoke changed the way I saw God forever He is in love with me, not just Jesus loves me this I know, but He is deeply captivated and in love with me. The God of the universe is in love with me?!And He wants to romance me?! How wild is that?! Realizing this did so much more than you can imagine. It was like all of a sudden I was good enough for some to love, without fault. I am not saying that I in myself would ever be good enough, but because of what Christ did I am now perfect in His eyes. I still mess up, but it does not change His love and pursuit of my heart. My whole life growing up I always felt compared to my brother who was “so well behaved” or my cousin who “sang so well”. I was never good enough as just me for my parents especially my mother. there was that thought in my mind, “You are not good enough”. Any dream I had I could count on it failing. I wanted someone to come and rescue me from that dark dungeon, and come and tell me that I was the one they were looking for, and maybe even find me to be something pretty. I was looking for a man, and while I eventually found (or rather he found me) him, He was not the answer to my doubt, failures, and questions. I thought fir a little while I needed him to be complete me, he had to be the answer, but he wasn’t. For the first couple months I thought that he was supposed to be perfect, be there for my every need, and read my mind when I was upset but didn’t want to talk about it. Crazy right? But the truth is we all do it at some point, but I learned that husbands are not mind readers. When the God of the universe decided to talk to little ‘ole me, I finally got my answer. He is the only thing I need, He was the answer. Men and Husbands are not perfect, neither are we, which is why we need something more in our lives than just us. We need him to provide our every need when we can’t make it on our own; we need Him to give us purpose and completeness. The great part of this whole thing is He is all these things AND He wants so deeply to be all these things for us, if we allow Him into our lives, and let Him heal us. I still have a ways to go, but I am now acknowledging my past for what it was and allowing God to take control. He is now starting the healing process in me. There are still days that I struggle and have to be reminded that He is healing me and I have to trust Him. I have also learned that when all this begins I am able to communicate all the junk I was dealing with much better to my husband and he is now able to be there for me more than I ever imagined he could. In trusting God with my heart, I learned how to trust my husband with my heart again, but the right way this time. Oh, how He loves us, that we would be named sons and daughters of the King. How He pursues us continually, without hesitation or fault. What a God I serve! If you have experienced or are dealing with a painful past, there is healing. There is restoration to be found in Christ our magnificent Savior. No matter how deep or how bad you think it is, you are not too much for Christ. He paid a high price for our healing physically and emotionally, but we have to choose to allow Him in and heal us. He is not going to without our permission, He    is a gentleman. And to deny His healing would utter foolishness, because when He heals you it goes deeper than you will ever imagine. through this process I have found healing for things deep in my soul I didn’t know were even still there. He loves you and wants to restore you and heal you so completely. He is more than enough; He is our most complete Savior.

                                                                  Sarah R. Hall 


Sorry I have not written anything in awhile…life has been crazy. Not that anyone is really reading this, but just for the heck of it I guess. Anyway, so my husband and I have started with another couple a new young adults ministry. We are very excited about it, and praying and believing for young adults from around the area to just pour in. We excited because this ministry is all about real people and a real God. We do not want the same ol’ same ol’…we want new exciting and relevant for today, not just another religious establishment. The cool thing is God is really showing up, even in the beginning, and even with our small number. God has a big plan for this generation and it has nothing to do with religion or tradition, but selling out completely for sake of his cause. Just throw caution to the wind, go for broke, and abandoning everything for Christ. That is what real life is about: love God and love people.

Sorry I have not written anything in awhile…life has been crazy. Not that anyone is really reading this, but just for the heck of it I guess. Anyway, so my husband and I have started with another couple a new young adults ministry. We are very excited about it, and praying and believing for young adults from around the area to just pour in. We excited because this ministry is all about real people and a real God. We do not want the same ol’ same ol’…we want new exciting and relevant for today, not just another religious establishment. The cool thing is God is really showing up, even in the beginning, and even with our small number. God has a big plan for this generation and it has nothing to do with religion or tradition, but selling out completely for sake of his cause. Just throw caution to the wind, go for broke, and abandoning everything for Christ. That is what real life is about: love God and love people.


Here in Missouri we have had a very mild and blessed winter.  It is amazing to have a break from crazy ice storms and blizzards. The weather has been wonderful, and my husband and I have finally got the chance to go hiking! Yay! It has been such a blast, and we look forward to taking our first trip together with just me and him this month. We are going to Arkansas, and hiking at the Buffalo River and maybe even the Petit Jean State Park, which is where this picture is from. ( we went with the in-laws)  We may also get to ride a train and go to Eureka Springs. I am so delightfully excited. 

Here in Missouri we have had a very mild and blessed winter.  It is amazing to have a break from crazy ice storms and blizzards. The weather has been wonderful, and my husband and I have finally got the chance to go hiking! Yay! It has been such a blast, and we look forward to taking our first trip together with just me and him this month. We are going to Arkansas, and hiking at the Buffalo River and maybe even the Petit Jean State Park, which is where this picture is from. ( we went with the in-laws)  We may also get to ride a train and go to Eureka Springs. I am so delightfully excited. 


To love is a Great adventure.


The Power of Love

I know the title might sound a bit cheesy, but there is something to it if you will here me out.  In my last post I told you My Husband and I’s story, of how we met and fell in love, but that is not entirely what I am talking about this time.  While it can include this kind of love, we know there are various types of love.  For example there is love of animals, love of children, love of friends, love of family, and love of a spouse.   What about the kind of love that moves you to become something greater than your self? What if there was a love so powerful it actually broke chains in someones life that was holding them back from who they were meant to be.  What if there was a love that could actually heal the sick, or a love that gave all it had so the other person could have all they needed.  What if…

Oh, what beauty to behold!  The fact is, there is! There is a love that heals all, restores all, gives all, and is unending!  Christ died for us, for our salvation in this terribly fallen world.  When we were yet sinners and cursing his very name he still gave all he had. The God of the universe was bruised and beaten near death, and then nailed to a cross to die for us. Many might say yeah, yeah we know, but I feel so much sorrow for the people that do not realize what that means for them. It doesn’t mean we have to give up our life and become all saintly and religious.  It means we receive something  we did not have before, and we become free to live the greatest life we were meant to have.  Love has that kind of power.  Have you ever seen the look on someones face who has nothing to offer his family, then one person gives them a gift such as a job or food or a home to live in?  It is a face of a burden lifted, a face of freedom.  Christ is not here to make you feel bad for what you have done or to make sure you are good and religious.  No! He is here to bring you freedom, love, compassion, healing, and wholeness.  The only thing he wants is your heart so he can restore those deep hurts.  If we could only see how high, how wide, and how deep his love is for us, wow, we would want nothing more than to be with him and be like him to everyone.  The world says love is the answer, they are close but they have missed something that comes first that makes the world of difference. Answer to the world is Christ’s Love.  He loves You.  Regardless of who you are, regardless of what you have done. Just let him.


My First Sweetie Pie Story

Hey there! My name is Sarah Hall, I am twenty-one years old, and married to the most wonderfully gorgeous man alive. haha Marlin is his name, and he is my first sweetie pie story. Several years ago my family and I moved to Tulsa, OK, where I became very involved in the the youth program at the church we attended.  I was in the worship band. In the summer every year the church has a youth convention that last about a week. There is a lot of wonderful worship and sermons, as well as many other things. So being in the band, most of my time was spent on the stage practicing. I didn’t get to hang out with my friends much, but that was ok for me.  However, as a result one night I was on stage, all my friends were up front around the stage, I saw one tall, white, skinny boy, wearing skinny jeans with long hair and a nose ring. I thought, “who is that with my friends? And where did he come from?” haha Well sad to say I never thought about it again. A year went by when I decided to Intern for the youth Pastor, which automatically made me a intern and leader for summer camp. Well that boy I was telling you about was from a sister church in Jackson, MS.  He had recently become a youth leader himself, when his church decided to attend our church’s youth camp. Only this time I had no idea HE was there. My attention was drawn to a man a saw that was tall, had shorter hair, and gorgeous blue eyes. However being an intern at the camp I ignored it completely. That is until one dreary morning, I was tired and a bit annoyed by the girls. That had been talking the whole previous night, that I had to constantly get on to. I very slowly walked in to get my breakfast and then sat down with my fellow friends. Just as I am about to take my first very wanted for my aching stomach bite, I hear, ” Is this seat taken?” As I was in a bad morning mood I quickly turn my head to see who would dare interrupt my first much longed for bite, it was that gorgeous man I had seen everywhere. How could I say yes? Even if I was tired, hungry, and in a bad mood, it just doesn’t happen everyday that a gorgeous guy like him would ask to sit by me. So then he asked, “Can I sit here?” as everyone of our friends was watching. I felt like there was something I was missing completely. So I said yes. From there we slowly started talking more, and by the end of the week we both finally understood what we both had missed completely, we liked each other.  So as camp came to an end and we returned to the church, he decided to stay another week an a half with one of our friends, and during that time i saw a picture of a boy I never thought I would see again. He was the boy from the previous summer, completely changed. Marlin was the skinny kid. haha And you know what else? He had already planned on moving to Tulsa to attend the same seminary school as me that summer! And that is where our first sweetie pie story began! So the story goes, we dated for a little over two years, got married, and moved back to Missouri where my family was from. Now we are here until God throws us another completely perfect story!


Life has got to be be lived-that’s all that there is to it
Eleanor Roosevelt

Q
WHERE WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO VISIT ON YOUR PLANET?
A

I would like to go anywhere there is an adventure to be had!


Oh, the sweetness of sugars

Oh, the sweetness of sugars