Don’t be Defined by the world
- Work, looks, wealth, health, friends… “Be not conformed to the world” (Romans 12:2)
- Need PURPOSE (by God), PARTNERSHIP (Friends of Faith), PROOF (of genuine Faith)
- Daniel 1:3-20 Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego – They would not bow to Babylon
- Apostle Paul – Was not defined by the world around him, but the God inside him.
- Galatians 2:20 “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless, I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”
- Romans 8:28 “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.”
Parable of the Pencil
1. Allow yourself to be held in someone’s hand
- A pencil is designed to write, but it has no power of its own – need capable hands.
- Be teachable: In hands of God, a Parent, School Teacher, Pastor.
- Ephesians 6:2,3 “Honor your father and mother — which is the first commandment with a promise — that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”
2. You will experience painful sharpening, which you’ll need, to be able to make your mark in life
- The wood has to be pruned… cut back… to expose the lead
- John 15:2 “…every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.”
- Must stay “sharp” in order to make a clear mark… don’t allow yourself to get dull.
- Proverbs 27:17 “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”
3. You will make mistakes – fortunately, you’re created with an eraser to help you correct your errors
- Our sins are erased by the blood of Jesus
- Ephesians 2:8 “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God.”
- Romans 5:1 “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. (9) Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from Gods wrath thru him.”
- Justified: Just-as-if-I’d-never-sinned
4. It’s what’s inside that’s most important!
- You can have all the symbols of success… big house, nice car, fine clothes…, but what’s inside?
- Pencils come in all colors, sizes, shapes, and abilities…but if it doesn’t have LEAD, what good is it?
- Mark 8:36 “What shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?”
- II Corinthians 4:7 “We have this treasure in earthen vessels, to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.”
5. Wherever you go, always leave your mark!
- Leave a mark for RIGHTEOUSNESS, for HONESTY, for PURITY, for INTEGRITY
- Mark 16:15 “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.”
- Matthew 5:13 “You are the salt of the earth… (14) You are the light of the world… (16) Let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”
- Your Relationship with God, Friends of Faith, Biblical Absolutes, Personal Disciplines, Pass the Spiritual Tests, Leave a mark for Righteousness, Grow your Faith!
- Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight.”