The Polar Express - A Word To Live By #6
In the clip we just watched, we saw the kids getting back on board The Polar Express for their return trip home. As they line up to board the train, the Conductor takes the tickets that he had punched an incomplete message in before and fills in the blanks, completing the incomplete word they had received at the onset of their journey. Each child’s ticket carried a unique, personal message that was significant to them as individuals. As we wrap up this series, what unique, personal, significant message is the Lord wanting to punch on your ticket?
Each child had a different personality, came from a different background, and had different inner struggle or need. Therefore, each child received a different ‘Word’ from the Conductor.
As we are not only closing out this series today, but this year and this decade as well, if you’ll allow Him to, the Holy Spirit will give you a fresh Word to take with you as you continue your journey.
So right now, before we go any further, I want us to take a few minutes to look back over not just the last year, but the last ten years. If you’re like me, 10 years ago Amy and I had a 7 and a 5-year-old, now we have a 17-year-old high school senior and a 15 year old who is now getting ready to drive. I have less hair and more waistline… ok a lot less hair and a lot more waist line. I have 10 more years of marriage experience, parenting experience, pastoring experience, etc. But most importantly I have 10 more years of a daily walk with the Lord.
The question that I have to ask myself and you have to ask yourself is, “Has my life experience had more to do with who I have become than my walk with the Lord has?”
Am I just older, ‘wiser’ and more experienced, or am I ten years deeper into what Salvation truly has for me?
-You see, some of us are the same person we were last year, or even a decade ago. We have more life experience, but we haven’t really grown much spiritually.
-We have to do more than allow our life experience, good or bad, to be our teacher.
-Along the way, we must allow the Holy Spirit to be our Conductor.
-The Holy Spirit will guide us through the good and bad seasons of life by giving us ‘Words to Live By’ along the way.
-His eternal Words will grow and develop us in midst of temporary circumstances, allowing us to come out on the other side with so much more than just ‘experience’ to show for it.
And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man.
The Tickets - Believe, Learn, Lead
We must move from simply being Born Again to Experiencing Salvation
-When Mary had given birth to Jesus she was not just at the end of her old way of life, but at the beginning of her Salvation.
BELIEVE - Mary was holding Salvation her arms, experiencing the excitement of a new life
-When you’re born again, you experience Salvation in its infancy. In its most basic form.
-You've put your faith in the Lord and believed on Him.
-All you know about being a child of God is that He saved you from your sin.
LEARN - Mary to had raise Salvation, He was her responsibility.
-Salvation had to be nurtured. (He needed His diaper changed, and He had to be burped!)
-Salvation had to be taught. (He had to be shown how operate in the world)
-Salvation had to grow. (He had to be fed and allowed to run and play)
-Salvation had to become strong. (He had to mature)
LEAD - The time would come when Mary would have to submit to Salvation, He would have to be allowed take the lead.
-Salvation plays the lead role in the life of a mature believer.
-You must come to the place where you operate from Salvation, because of Salvation’s continual work in your life.
-Salvation cannot be fully experienced by simply trying to live up to a list of religious expectations and requirements.
-To experience true ‘Life’ means to experience life from Salvation, not by trying to live up to it.
According to Your Faith
28 When he entered the house, the blind men came to him, and Jesus said to them, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” They said to him, “Yes, Lord.” 29 Then he touched their eyes, saying, “According to your faith be it done to you.”
-The ‘ticket’ to experiencing Salvation is your faith.
-Throughout the Gospels, Jesus referred to people’s faith to receive as being the key to how the experienced Salvation.
-The extent to which you experience salvation is directly related to the extent that your willing to live by faith.
8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
-Notice that it reads that you are ‘Saved through faith’.
-In other words, If you want to access anything that Salvation encompasses, you must have faith to receive it.
-The blind men experienced salvation through healing because they had faith that Jesus could heal them.
And he did not do many miracles there because of their lack of faith.
-In Jesus’ own hometown of Nazareth, their lack of faith kept them from experiencing the wholeness that Salvation offered.
Let Him Punch Your Ticket
So, faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.
-The Passion Translation says it like this… Faith, then, is birthed in a heart that responds to God’s anointed utterance of the Anointed One.
-Notice it say faith comes from hearing, not seeing.
-The Logos, or written Word is vital, it shows us God’s general will and salvation. But, the Logos Word without the revelation that the Holy Spirit wants to speak to you will be no more than a 5000 page history book of rules.
-For the Logos to become personal to you, you must allow the Conductor to ‘punch your ticket’ with a rhema (revealed) Word that will sustain you on the way to where you’re going.
Faith begins where the will of God is known.
-God and His Word are one and the same.
-When He speaks, it’s for the purpose of strengthening your faith. This is why a real, working relationship with Him is so important.
-He wants to punch your ticket with a Word that will not just sustain you but propel you into a greater revelation of your salvation.
-He isn’t just telling you what to do, He’s revealing Himself to you to strengthen your faith for you to experience more of the salvation the He came, died and resurrected for you to receive.
The Special Ticket
Count On, Rely On, Depend On - One of the greatest aspects of Salvation is experiencing it alongside others.
-The boy who received this ticket had didn’t know the value of friendship until the difficulty of the journey required him to receive help from others.
-At TWBC we understand that God uses those around us to help experience Salvation in it’s fullness…We call that GroupLife.
-We want to see you establish relationships with other believers that you can Count On, Rely On, and Depend On to walk with you through this adventure we call life.
What does the year 2020 and the next decade hold for you?
Think back to the question I asked you at the start of this message.
-One year, or ten years from now, will you just have more life experience, or will you have truly experienced Life from your Salvation?
-Don’t leave this place today without letting Him give a Word to live by.
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