Beginning our new series on Joy, Pastor Hunter preached from the familiar text of Philippians 4:1-9.
Here are his sermon’s highlights:
– The pain of your past doesn’t have to paralyze the potential of your present.
– “Rejoice” implies that you’ve had joy at some point.
– Joy has nothing to do with what’s going on around you, but by what’s inside you.
– In order to get our joy back, we…
- Have to Relate Right (Eudia and Synteche)
- It only takes 2-3 people to threaten the unity of the church (James 3).
- You have to get rid of your mess, so you can get your joy.
- Where there is no unity, there is no joy.
- When you walk around mad at someone, you’re giving them too much attention.
- You can’t worship with a bad attitude.
- Squash all the petty stuff!!
- Have to Pray Right
- You can’t worry for anything!
- In every circumstance, we have to pray.
- Worry is a joy stealer.
- God told us to be a warrior not a worrier.
- There are things we can’t handle.
- Take all your stuff, big and small, to God.
- The enemy enters through our heart and mind, but when we pray, God sends peace to guard both entrances!!
- Have to Think Right
- You have a choice between negativity and positivity?
- Which do I usually choose?
- We need to constantly bring up great things about God from our insides.
- Some of us can’t shout because we’re not studying. We can’t bring up things from the inside because we don’t have anything stored up there. What can you shout about if you don’t know anything?
- Have to Do Right
- When we sin, we grieve the Holy Spirit. This, in effect, affects our spirit (sad Holy Spirit > bad mood/spirit)
- WE HAVE TO WANT THE JOY OF THE LORD MORE THAN WE WANT THE PLEASURES OF OUR BODIES!!!!
- Do have joy; we have to have a do-right mind.
- Even if you sin, you can have joy once you confess and ask for cleansing.
- It doesn’t matter what the Devil stole from you, you can reclaim it by being content.
“We have to want the joy of the Lord more than we want the pleasures of our bodies” and “…when we pray, God sends peace to guard both entrances” are two of the most convicting, challenging and comforting points in one of Pastor Hunter’s sermons. We all want joy. We sing songs about it. We write poems about it. It’s the topic of most of our conversations…but do we desire this joy on the inside more than we want the temporary, extremely nice satisfaction of external pleasures from the world in the forms of vengeance, fornication, overindulgence in alcohol and food, being spiteful, lying, fighting…? Sadly, some of us, me included, have to weigh the costs every single time, and, although the answer should be obviously the joy of the Lord, most of us don’t choose His joy of our temporary pleasure. We allow the desires of our flesh to overshadow the conviction of our Holy Spirit. No need to over talk that point…next.
Paul told the believers in Philippi in verses 6-7 that when they turn their worries over to God through prayer and petition, the peace that “transcends all understanding” comes down to guard your heart and your mind. The devil gets to us through our emotions, through our doubt, through logic, through monetary balances in our accounts, through letters from potential employers, universities, newly ex-partners…God blocks all that mess when we pray! The issue for the jury is did you pray? We see the insufficient funds letter and ask God to put money in our account, but do we pray that He assist us in managing our money, getting more gainful employment, living within or underneath our means, that He takes away the anxiety of being in debt? Not usually. Usually we want Him to provide the same temporary fixes the world does, not fix the real issue and reinstitute our joy. We have to work on pray and petitioning to God with confidence, so we can block out all of the devil’s mess.
This sermon was so good, I really don’t wanna mess it up by over analyzing it, so I’d encourage you to reflect on regaining your joy if you’ve lost it, or increasing that which you have by relating, thinking, praying and doing what pleases God. God Bless!