Sermon Series: Friends With God
Today: “We Need Friends”
Do the “mom”
on the cell phone routine.
Do we treat our
friends (or our mom) the same way? Have we built a wall around ourselves in other
ways so that people can’t get in? Do we live on an island all by ourselves?
I have been guilty
of this…I have been known to say: “You don’t pay my bills and you don’t tuck me in at night so I don’t
care about you or what you have to say!”
John Donne, a 17th
century pastor and poet said, “No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part
of the main.”
In other words, we, as Christians are meant to live as a continent.
o Many of us have isolated ourselves in some sort of invisible prison that keeps us from having genuine
friendships with others.
Some of us are fighters and that is how we keep people away
o Because we have been hurt in the past, we keep ourselves safe by being on the offensive. We go around hurting others before they can hurt us.
Some of us curl up in a ball and cry and feel miserable and throw pity parties for ourselves. “I’ve been hurt so I’m just going to sit here by myself and cry”
o Don’t get me wrong. Hurt is real and often makes
us cry, but we can’t allow ourselves to stay that way for ever.
We were created to be part of something bigger than ourselves.
o That something bigger comes in the form of friendships.
The church cannot function as a healthy church if friendships are not genuine
within the church
o People won’t come back to a church if they feel like the people within the church don’t
care for each other
§ The Barna Group did a survey and it said that: 53% of people said a key
factor in determining whether or not they will return to a church is how much people cared for each other
Are you someone
who does not see yourself as part of the bigger continent?
Are you someone
who does not want to be part of the bigger continent?
I’ve Got news
for you today.
teaches us that we need friends.
However, I must
If you want real friendship with others, you must be willing to take some risks.
There is no genuine
friendship that does not experience hurt, pain, frustration, etc. heartache.
If we get close
to each other, chances are we will hurt each other. Its part of being human.
Instead of taking
risks, I suppose you can choose to live inside a tiny little bubble.
(Get inside the
It seems much safer
in the bubble.
“If I stay
in this bubble, I am protected from so many other things. People can’t
say mean things about me or my family. They can’t see how chubby I am. They can’t see that I’m depressed and discouraged by the look on my face
because they can’t see my face!”
in this bubble, I don’t have to reach out to others and that will defiantly keep me safe, because…people do hurtful
things….so as long as I stay away from people I won’t get hurt. Yah,
that’s a great plan! I’ll stay away from people, especially Christians! Life will be much better inside my safe, and comfortable, little bubble.
(Pop my head out
of the tent)
You can try this
too… but you can’t have my tent!
you give it a try? Take the paper bag and place it on your head. That way no one can see you and you can’t see anyone else.
It’s just you in your little world all by yourself.
If we would all
do this, we can have a safe comfortable church. People wont find Jesus and lives
wont be changed, but that’s OK, at least I’m OK. I’m safe!
(Come out of the
We can’t do
that! As I said earlier, God wants more than that from us. He wants us to live
in friendship with one another!
The option of not
having friends so we don’t get hurt is not a real option.
is worth the risk of getting hurt once in a while because the benefits of friendship far outweigh the occasional mess-ups.
Things are not friends.
Animals are not
People are friends. We need each other!
Are you living a life separated from others?
Have you built walls around your life to keep people from getting close to you?
It is time to tear down the walls that separate us and start investing in friendships.
Turn to 1 Corinthians 12:12-26
As we have just
seen in the Scriptures, we were created to be a part of each others’ lives
Whether you like
I or not the good, the bad and the ugly are all part of your body
EXAMPLE: (As with
our own bodies) Just because there are things about your physical body that you don’t like, that does not mean you can
just cut it off or ignore. It is part of you for the rest of your earthly life.
In a sense, “we
complete each other” (Gerry McGuire Movie)
We all have a place. We all belong. We all have a part to
do. We all have gifts to use. We
all have others we are supposed to be connected with in friendship.
So, How do you make these kinds of friendships?
(Watch the video)
1. Get to know the body
14 Now the body is not made up of one part but of many.
Spend time with
Get to know other
parts of your body
Stop acting like
you are the only part of the body that matters, or even exists
Hint: You must take
the first step. “You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested
in other people then you can in two years by trying to get others interested in you.”
2. Serve within the Body
18But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them,
just as he wanted them to be. 19If they were all one part, where would the body be?
Each of us are here
for a specific purpose.
When we all do what
we are gifted to do, the church becomes a wonderful place.
Lets take a sense
of pride and ownership and responsibility for our body.
3. Experience life with the body
25so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts
should have equal concern for each other. 26If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every
part rejoices with it.
I do not believe
life was meant to be lived outside of the church family and that church is something we do as a part of our week.
Our church family
is to be our family! We are to share our lives with each other.
When you see someone
hurting, share their hurt. When you see someone succed, celebrate with them (don’t
compete with them)
Basically, If you want a friend, you need to be a friend
The Bible shows
us what true friendship is all about. Are you willing to make it happen?
Sure it takes risks. Yah, you’ll probably get hurt down the road.
But there is still no other way to live.
plan for us includes Christians living in friendship with other Christians.
Before we go, I
want you to look at The Daily Challenge insert.
It includes 4 things
you can do between today and next Sunday to help you make steps towards building friendship with others.