How To Please the Lord in 2019

Dec 30, 2018 | Justin Beal, Children's Minister

How to Please the Lord in 2019

Titus 2:11-14

This time every year we get to the place where we evaluate what has happened over the past year and plan for the next year.

While these evaluations are not bad, we must keep in mind the standard by which we make these evaluations.

“Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”-Hebrews 12:1-2 

How to Please the Lord in 2019...

Accept God’s Grace Gift(2:11) 

Above any other instruction that Paul gave Titus for this church was the foundational truth/necessity of the gospel.

“For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is a gift of God.”-Ephesians 2:8 

It is God’s grace that brings salvation. There is nothing you and I can do to earn it.

Pleasing the Lord as Individuals Requires...

1)  Trusting the Work of Jesus

The second part of verse 11 says “the grace of God has appeared bringing salvation to all men.”

Jesus’ death on the cross was the ultimate demonstration of God’s grace toward us.

“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”-Romans 5:8 

Pleasing the Lord as a Church Requires... 

1)  Keeping the Gospel Central in All We Do

 “And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.”-Acts 4:12

We must ask ourselves this question of everything we put on our church calendar, “How does this affect the kingdom of God?” 

How to Please the Lord in 2019...

Obey God’s Instructions(2:12) 

The grace gift that we just described brings instructions that we must follow. 

The first instruction given is an indicator of the daily struggle that Christians face. We are instructed to deny ungodliness and worldly desires.

Ungodliness is to be profane and have a lack of reverence for God. Worldly desires are deep desires, lusts and cravings for the things of this world.

The second instruction is the opposite of the first. We are to live sensibly (self-controlled), righteously (fair, correct), and godly (with reverence and respect for what God desires for us).

Pleasing the Lord as Individuals Requires…

1)  Submitting Daily to His Instructions

And he said to all “if anyone wishes to come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.”-Luke 9:23

With this verse in mind we must say “no” when we are presented with the opportunity to engage in sin.

Pleasing the Lord as a Church Requires... 

1)  Remembering What is Most Important

“Therefore if there is any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and compassion, make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose. Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.”-Philippians 2:1-4 

We are to have the mind of Christ. In the verses that follow we are reminded that Christ demonstrated this by humbling himself to the point of death on a cross.

How to Please the Lord in 2019...

Remain Focused on Our Eternal Future(2:13-14)

While we are instructed as to how we should live in the present age, the Lord intends for us to look forward to His return.

As a Christian our hope is found in none other than Jesus and His return.

His death on the cross had a purpose. He redeemed (set free) us, He purified (to make clean) us, and He will one day return again to take us home.

Pleasing the Lord Requires...

1) Not Allowing the World/Circumstances to Dictate Our Joy

“Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. Be anxious for nothing but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”-Philippians 4:4-6

The instruction here is to run to no one or nothing else other than the Lord in 2019. 

We may not understand all that happens, but joy found only in the Lord will satisfy.

 Challenge-Am I using my relationship with the Lord as the standard for evaluating 2018 and planning for 2019?

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