New Hope Notes
Show And Tell Faith
Pastor Aaron Cordeiro
Pastor Aaron: We are beginning a wonderful series called Faith In Action. I love this series because it shows that if we actually apply what God’s word is saying to us, we will be a blessed church! The Bible says we’re not blessed if we just hear God’s word; but we’re blessed if we do what God’s word says! The cool thing is that in this series we’ll be walking through the book of Acts, which is really about one character: the Holy Spirit in action!
In following the acts of the Holy Spirit (in the book of Acts), we learn how to set up an atmosphere for the miraculous in our lives. I want to talk about a showable faith where people can see the good news through our lives and watch miracles take place!
Man’s definition of miracle is a surprising and welcome event that is not explainable by natural or scientific laws and is, therefore, considered the work of divine agency. But God’s definition of miracle is semeion (in Greek), which is something hidden and secret, a sign, warning, or admonition of instruction of truth.
God is saying that He will take that which is hidden, that which we can’t see, and bring it to life and use that sometimes as a warning to admonish, to build up, or to instruct us in the truth. We must understand that the miraculous always has a purpose to lift up the name of Jesus and give God glory.
We’ll talk about developing a showable faith that sets up the atmosphere for the miraculous where we kind of put ourselves in this zone, as it were, where God is willing to do miracles in our lives. God does this to turn our hearts to Jesus—the Hope of all hopes.
The Bible says it’s possible for you and me to actually put our faith in action. When we show people a transformed life, it’s like the loudest sermon you’ll ever preach in your life about the hope of Jesus! That’s what it’s about! It’s difficult to explain in words when God really transforms your life, it's almost as if you don't have to say anything because people see the transformation.
Isn't it true the best salesmen are those who are genuinely transformed by the product? If it transformed their life and if it made a difference in their life, then, it's easy to sell!
The Bible says, “When He saw them, He said, ‘Go, show yourselves to the priests.’ And as they went, they were cleansed.” (Luke 17:14 NIV)
The Bible also says, “Then Jesus ordered him, ‘Don't tell anyone, but go, show yourself to the priest and offer the sacrifices that Moses commanded for your cleansing, as a testimony to them.’" (Luke 5:14 NIV)
A. Show Up
It may be at church, a Bible study, a prayer group, your kid’s sports games, or the date that you’ve been promising your wife and you know God is telling you to spend more time with her. The first resolution is to just show up!
Here’s what the people of God did in the early church…
“All the believers were together and had everything in common.” (Acts 2:44 NIV)
In other words, they were showing up. They were gathering and coming together. There’s something about showing up and coming together that’s very powerful. If we have the faith to work within the kingdom of God, God promises: God stuff will happen! Here’s what happened to Peter and John as they headed to church to pray…
“One day Peter and John were going up to the temple at the time of prayer—at three in the afternoon.” (Acts 3:1 NIV)
What was interesting is that a blind man was begging for money, and Peter and John said, “Hey, man, we don’t have money, but we have Jesus and He heals. Get up!” As they were committed to show up, along the way, in the margin of life, God did a miracle!
An atmosphere for the miraculous is probably present because when you're going to church or to pray, you are thinking about God. There's consistency when we say, “God, we're going to show up. Where are you? I'm going to be there.”
When we show up at church, there will be a corporate word that God will speak to the body of Christ. When we show up, God will speak right to you, not just individually, but as a group of people. Maybe it's being in community with one another and doing life with one another that allows for support system. When we're down and out, we have help. We have others to do life with, life on life. Show up!
In order to set up an atmosphere for the miraculous, the first step is to show up. The next step is to…
B. Prioritize And Schedule Consistent Time With God
Consistent time spent with God is important because the One we prioritize our schedule with is the Creator of our soul! He is the miracle worker, the one who transforms and makes a difference; therefore, prioritize and schedule consistent time with God.
When we consistently spend time with Him, He gives us strength beyond our strength. We understand His love. We understand hope. We understand eternity. And perseverance happens, and when you want to give up, you won't because He didn't. You understand that fully.
The substance of our faith is developed in the margin when no one is looking. May I encourage you to set up an atmosphere for the miraculous by prioritizing God and consistently put Him in your schedule? It will make a big difference!
The Bible says, “’And I will reveal to you things that eye has not seen nor ear heard and which have not entered the heart of man, all that God has promised for those who love Him.’” (1 Cor. 2:9 NIV)
Whatever you love, you'll spend time doing. The Bible says if we love God, He will reveal things “the eye has not seen nor the ear has heard.” Man, He will blow you away!
The Bible says, “‘Come now, and let us reason together,’ says the Lord, ‘though your sins are as scarlet, they will be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they will be like wool.’” (Isaiah 1:18 NIV)
In other words, when we consistently come to God and repent saying, “God, I messed up. My sins are like crimson. I’m just a filthy person.” God says, “Hey, come, let me reason with you. Let me tell you about that sin. When you come and bring that to me and confess your sins, I take that sin, and I throw it as far as the east is to the west.” Repentance makes a big difference in our lives.
C. Persevere Amidst The Pressures Of Life.
Usually, when the going gets tough, it’s so easy for people to bail and give up because they don’t understand perseverance. Remember that the miracle is waiting just on the other side. Acts Chapter 2 helps us understand perseverance a little better:
The Bible says, “With many other words, he warned them; and he pleaded with them, ‘Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.’ Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.” (Acts 2:40-41 NIV)
When you hear the Good News, when you’re fully permeated with that word, when you believe it with all your heart, it does something—a transformation takes place!
We understand His love. We understand hope. We understand eternity. And perseverance happens and you won’t give up when you want to because Jesus didn’t give up!
Some of us might be here this weekend and God might be saying, “Hey, it’s time to show up and build consistency in your life. And when you want to quit, don’t! A miracle is waiting right on the other side!”