Message from the Pastor

This Could Be the Start of Something Big: Think Small, Grow Big
I Peter 5:2-6
1 Peter 5:1-4 (KJV)
1 The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed:
2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;
3 Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.
4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away. 5 Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.
6 Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:
7 Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

 
What kind of difference can be made by something small?
At 211 degrees, water is hot. At 212 degrees, it boils. And with boiling water, comes steam. And with steam, you can power a train. One degree. Applying one extra degree of temperature to water means the difference between something that’s simply very hot and something that generates enough force to power a machine – a beautifully uncomplicated metaphor that ideally should feed everything we do.
Seemingly small things can make tremendous differences.
Thomas Edison said... “Many of life’s failures are men who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”
What would happen if you just added a “+” to your life?
From 2000-2006, The PGA Championship winner took home an average of $1,060,714. The second-place finisher averaged $460,657… less.
The margin of difference…1.71 strokes. Less than a stroke a day
At NASCAR’s Daytona 500 from 1997-2006 (10 years), the winner took the checkered flag by an average margin of 0.175 seconds… less than two-tenths of a second.
For the winner it meant $509,000… more. Vince Lombardi tightened it up with...
“Inches make the champion.”
Eula Hamilton was the consummate Church Secretary. She could type with one hand and run the mimeograph machine with the other, all the while fielding phone calls from parishioners and the general public. I liked the sign in her office:
If you are like a wheelbarrow, going no farther than you are pushed, you need not apply for work here! Eula knew how to add the plus sign to her ministry! She refused to give less than 101%.
1 Peter 5:2-6
Here’s my concern: that you care for God’s flock with all the diligence of a shepherd. Not because you have to, but because you want to please God.
Not calculating what you can get out of it, but acting spontaneously. Not bossily telling others what to do, but tenderly showing them the way. When God, who is the best shepherd of all, comes out in the open with his rule, he’ll see that you’ve done it right and commend you lavishly. And you who are younger must follow your leaders. But all of you, leaders and followers alike, are to be down to earth with each other, for— God has had it with the proud, But takes delight in just plain people. So be content with who you are, and don’t put on airs. God’s strong hand is on you; he’ll promote you at the right time.
(The Message)
The “+” for Spiritual Leadership = “-“!
Matthew 23:11-12
11 The greatest among you will be your servant. 12 For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted. (NIV)
Leaders, lead humbly!
1 Peter 5:2-3
2 Be shepherds of God's flock that is under your care, serving as overseers—
not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be;
not greedy for money, but eager to serve; 3 not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. (NIV)
"Lord, when we are wrong, make us willing to change. And when we are right, make us easy to live with." - Peter Marshall
John Trent did his best to round up kids who really needed to hear the gospel when they went to summer camp. Mark was one of those kids.
Bob Mitchell, the main speaker that week, called most of the shots—including when meals would be served. So "Mitch" was always talking with the cook. The cook loved her work, but it was exhausting. She always looked tired. Whenever she talked to Mitch, he got up and gave her his chair—and a moment's rest—while they discussed meal plans.
Nobody noticed Mitch doing this . . . except Mark. Mark hadn't come to hear about Jesus. But when he saw Jesus' love lived out in that simple act of kindness by the camp speaker, he began to listen to Mitchell's talks. Later that week, Mark asked Jesus to be his Savior.
It wasn't because of the messages, Mark said, but because of the love he saw in Mitch. "If that's what it means to be a Christian," Mark said, "I want to be one."
Followers, follow humbly!
1 Peter 5:5
5 Young men, in the same way be submissive to those who are older. (NIV)
Christians, practice humbly sweating the small stuff!
1 Peter 5:5-6
5 All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, "God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble." 6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under God's mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. (NIV)
"Get someone else to blow your horn, and the sound will carry twice as far." - Will Rogers
Matthew 5:41-42 41 If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles.
42 Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you. (NIV)
Success is not being larger than some other church; it is bearing as much fruit as possible given your gifts, opportunities, and potential. If you’re not taking any risks in your ministry, then no faith is required to do it. And if your ministry doesn’t require any faith, then you are being unfaithful.
-Rick Warren
Matthew 17:14-20
14 When they came to the crowd, a man approached Jesus and knelt before him. 15 "Lord, have mercy on my son," he said. "He has seizures and is suffering greatly. He often falls into the fire or into the water. 16 I brought him to your disciples, but they could not heal him." 17 "O unbelieving and perverse generation," Jesus replied, "how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy here to me." 18 Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of the boy, and he was healed from that moment. 19 Then the disciples came to Jesus in private and asked, "Why couldn't we drive it out?" 20 He replied, "Because you have so little faith. I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you." (NIV)
There is greatness in small things! What would happen if you just added a little bit more faith into your prayers, your confidence in God, your job, your family, your commitment? How often do we miss an opportunity to create better results because we don’t apply a small amount of effort beyond what we normally do? Consider, the impact of making an extra contact each day at work... a sales call... a customer follow-up... a brief discussion with a colleague... an encouraging talk with a member of your team. With contact comes opportunity. At the end of a year you’ll have opened more than 200 additional doors of possibility. On the personal side, imagine the exponentially positive results of investing an additional 15 minutes of quality time each day with your children or spouse – an equivalent of more than two weeks each year at work.
No longer will you be able to do only what is required of you, only what is expected of you. Because with awareness comes responsibility – to yourself and others.
Think Small -- Grow Big!