New Hope Notes
God Has A Plan For You
Doing Church As A Team
Pastor Richard Waialeale
Several years ago, when I pastored New Hope South Shore along the Ala Wai, the congregation would gather outside the cafeteria for a free lunch after service. As each person left the cafeteria, I would try to catch them and thank them for coming. I remembered approaching this crusty elderly lady named Leona who use to hobble into service with a cane, and who never stayed for lunch, because she did not want to miss her Handi-Van ride. After I thanked Leona for coming, she said, “That was a great service.” I then replied, “That wasn’t me - that was the Holy Spirit.” Leona then responded “No-if that was the Holy Spirit, it would have been much better.” Well, I was immediately humbled!
My point is that I want you to recognize who God is, and who He has called you to be. Let God be your source of sufficiency. Today, I want to help you to understand what it means by this statement “God has a plan for you.”
When the prophet Samuel, went to Jesse’s house to look for the next king of Israel, all of Jesse’s sons were good looking and strong; however, God told Samuel, “Man looks at the outward appearance, but I look at the heart.” The part that you play in this world is not based on your outside criteria, it is based on your heart - on what is inside of you. The Bible says, “Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you, before you were born, I set you apart…” (Jer. 1:5)
So whenever you feel that you are not good enough to live the life that God has called you to live, remember that like Jeremiah, God chose you before you were born.
The Apostle Paul said, “But when God, who set me apart from birth and called me by His grace, was pleased…” (Gal. 1:15)
David wrote “For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” (Ps. 139:13-14)
During our short stay on earth, we have a special assignment from God. It is our job to discover why God put each of us here. God makes no mistakes. Sometimes we have to experience things that we cannot understand so God can bring us to a place where He needs us to be.
Today, I want everyone to learn that God has a plan for you by following three Biblical principles that will help set your alignment with God, shape your relationship with God, and help shape your perspective on how God sees you.
“You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit – fruit that will last – and so that whatever you ask in My name the Father will give you.” (John 15:16) This passage is saying that every one of you are ordained for ministry – all you need is Jesus. You do not need a pastor to pray for someone at the hospital, you can pray yourself, because you are a minister.
There was a story about Napoleon who was encircled by his high ranking officers while strategizing. Suddenly, his horse is spooked by something and takes off. Seeing this, a nearby private chases down the horse, catches the horse by the reins, and calms the horse down, before returning him to Napoleon. In response, Napoleon says, “Well done, Captain!” The private simply responds “Yes sir!” and does not say, “I don’t deserve this” or not accept it. In the same manner, God calls us ordained ministers, and we just need to simply say, “Yes sir!”
The second part of the scripture referencing John 15:16 says,”…so that whatever you ask in My name the Father will give you.”
I’d like to explain that using this example. I walk into a store and make a one-hundred thousand dollar purchase. At the cashier, I pull out a check with the words Richard Waialeale, Amazon.com prime member printed on the left hand corner. If I hand her the check, she will laugh at me; however, if I pull out a check with the name Bill Gates, Microsoft, or Warren Buffet, there will be no problem. So you see it’s not how rich I am, it is the person whose account I am drawing from that counts. When praying and calling on the name Jesus, the Bible says, “Whatever you ask in My name, the Father will give you.” God has a plan for you to bear fruit – His fruit.
After my acceptance of Jesus Christ, I was trying to figure out my calling
Well, although I have heard these words before, this time they resonated in me –“saving lives and winning souls for Jesus.” This time I told God, “If you let me do that, I will do whatever you tell me to do.” Sometime later, God called me to do a hospital visit, but I replied, “Anything but that!” Sometimes we pick and choose what we want to do for God; instead, we need to recognize His plan for our lives and be willing to be stretched by Him.
A couple of months ago I did a hospital visit to an unsaved man who was dying from cancer. Half of the words that came out of his mouth were “F bombs”, but he knew his time was ticking away and he wanted to receive Christ. Recently, I received word that he had passed. Someday I will meet him in Heaven and he is going to say thanks for saving his life. God created us to glorify Him by bearing fruit.
“From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and He marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands.” (Acts 17:26) God established the nations and the boundaries of mankind for our protection. Let the creator of your life rule your life, and trust that He will intervene with His presence when things go astray. In Luke 15, Jesus talked about the Prodigal son- the lost son who squandered his inheritance. What is interesting about this story, is that this father never tried to control his son, or use force to do so, but prayed for his son every single day. One day this father sees his son broken and humiliated, coming back to him after a long absence, from over the mountain. This father happily welcomes his son home, and unconditionally hugs him. The money was lost, but more importantly his son was lost, and now was found. This father always left the light on for his son to come back home. Always leave the light on. The power of prayer is far stronger than trying to control the situation.
The Bible says, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not upon your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your path.” (Prov. 3:5-6)
“Don’t be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil. This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones.” (Prov. 3:7-8)
If you do not allow God to intercede, you may take a chance of your body shutting down, due to stress and worry. Solomon knew that trusting God is exactly where we have to start, as written in Proverbs.
3. You are GOD’S MASTERPIECE.
“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus. So we can do the good things He planned for us long ago.” (Eph. 2:10 NLT) In other translations, the word masterpiece is referred to as “workmanship”. The Greek word for workmanship is “poiema”, pronounced “poi-eema”. That’s how we get the word poem. We are God’s poetry in motion.
I have heard people call Christians hypocrites, inconsistent, and not that great. I don’t try to defend Christians, because we are “poiema” – poetry in motion. I just say, “You should have seen me before I became a Christian!”
One day, when I was at New Hope South Shore, an old friend of mine named Leslie Wong, who grew up with me in Palolo Valley, came up to me after a service. He was a rough looking guy who dropped “F bombs” every other word. He said, “I couldn’t believe you had become a pastor, so I had to see for myself.” I replied, “It was either brain surgery or Jesus!” As a Christian, our calling is a life-long process to become more like Christ, and which will be completed when we see Christ face to face. To be worthy of His calling is to do what God is leading you to do.
Your application is to think like God thinks, see yourselves as God sees you, fix your mind on Him, and participate in God’s redemptive plan for you. In reference to this redemptive plan, the Bible says, “By this, My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit…” (John 15:8)
It’s the practical fruit of your life that produces the glory of God. It’s sort of like this; husbands, love your wives just as Christ loves the church – this glorifies God. When you manage your finances God’s way, when you honor the people around you, and when you empower another – you glorify God.
Press into Jesus and live life the way Jesus intends it to be and let the fruit you produce do the talking for you. This is God’s plan for your life. Bear fruit, and trust in God. Then you will know that you are glorifying God, and are His masterpiece.