(Preached at Langley Avenue Church of God on 2/17/08)
We ended last week with David handling the negative from others. We pick up this week with how you can handle the negative:
So if you can sing, do math, whatever it is, give it to God and watch him take what looks useless and make it into giant killers. Not only will you have victory over the Goliath situations, but you encourage those that see you to go forward in the battle to win as well. I had people tell me I couldn’t be anything. I was told I would be nothing but a statistic. I would be a girl on welfare with a bunch of babies with nothing to offer. But God said, “NO. You will not be a statistic because I have you destined for greatness”. Sometimes you have to tell the naysayers in your life, if you don’t have anything good to say, please be quiet and stop talking to me. My rocks are not useless they are giant killers. So people of God, let us stop looking on the outside and seek to see what God sees, the heart.
Let’s stop looking at the negative and start to seeing the positive. If we have a child that doesn’t come to Sunday school often, let us not jump on them for only being there for 15 minutes or for only coming once a month, lets give them the best 15 minutes they can get and drench that seed in them. Let’s stop jumping on our youth because they don’t look like we think. “OH what a sin before God” Well if what they look like is a sin before God let’s pray for them, and then when we see them tell them, I am so happy to see you. I miss you when you aren’t here. I’m glad your doing well in school. I love your smile. I’m praying for you. and the praises goes on and on. You know what happens? We invest so much in that young person, they will want to come back to us because they have found love and acceptance and not rejection and ridicule. Guess what then happens, you can tell them things that may help them grow and change. You can’t do it until you have established a relationship with them first.
I had a friend’s mother when I was young that would allow me to come and talk to her no matter how long I needed to talk. She didn’t tell me my shorts were too short, and they were. She didn’t tell me all the negative things about me (because there were some), instead she talked about the good things. If I needed 10 minutes or 2 hours, she gave it to me. Her name is Barbara Ellis and she invested in me. Do you know that investment in me saved me at times? When my stepfather thought it was his job to ridicule me daily I would replay the messages she gave over and over again in my head.
Do you know because she invested in me I didn’t have to become another negative statistic? Church do you know when we ridicule our young people we are grooming them to become a statistic? So when we wag our tongues about how bad they are or how lazy they are or some other complaint we can come up with, be assured you are adding to the negative numbers.
Young people, God wants you to find assurance in what you can become in him. It is your choice, you can decide to accept his calling for you and allow his Spirit to direct you even now, or you can reject it and choose to become just another statistic. You can know with assurance that God ‘s purpose in you will be fulfilled if you give yourself to him. God does not invest himself in anything or anyone he does not plan to complete. So you can stand boldly when some come and say the negative things. Even if those words hurt, you can do like David and determine in your heart to continue to go forward. David didn’t stop short of becoming the king he was anointed to be, don’t stop short of reaching your place of purpose, the place God destined you to fulfill. Now I want you to understand David was not anointed king one day and then became king the next. He had to go through some bitter times before that thing was fulfilled. Yet, I believe in those bitter times he was able to remember the calling on his life and to continue to move toward that goal.