Posted by: pastormikemcdowell | August 5, 2015

August 5, 2015 “Living Out Loud”

 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.  Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.” (Romans 12: 11-13)

Good morning Everyone!

Some years ago, a movie was released that told the story of a young man with a dream. His name was Daniel “Rudy” Ruettiger. Though a marginal student due to being dyslexic, Rudy had a dream of one day playing football for the University of Notre Dame. He was undersized, weighing only 165 pounds and standing only 5’6″ tall…hardly vital statistics that would garner a spot in such a storied and prestigious program as that of the Fighting Irish. But what Rudy lacked in size, was more than compensated by his enormous desire and determination. His determination did not go unrecognized by the team’s head coach, Dan Devine (ironically appropriate), who put him on the field for three plays the last home game of Rudy’s senior season. In the final play of Ruettiger’s senior season with the Fighting Irish, he recorded a sack and was carried off the field by his jubilant teammates. No less than the legendary quarterback Joe Montana said of him, “He worked his butt off to get where he was and to do the things he did.”

Rudy Reuttiger’s grit and determination should be reflective of the type of life we live for our own “Divine” coach, our Lord and our God. Paul wrote of this Christian character in Romans 12. He encourages believers to “Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.  Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.” In other words, we are to emulate Christ in every aspect of our lives. The Enemy always brings his “A” game to the fight. He will use every trick in the book to discourage and demean us and diminish our fervor. He is a joy-stealer, a pain-master, a prayer discourager. He will attempt to shift our focus towards selfish fulfillment and away from self-sacrifice. He will lie to us about the worth of those around us. Paul clearly understood his tactics, because, for a season, that is exactly what the Enemy did in his life. But that life was transformed by Christ. Though seemingly ill-equipped for the enormity of the God-directed task laid out before him, he said, “I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:14)  The great French artist Emile Zola once said of his own work,

“I am an artist… I am here to live out loud.”

I am a Christian! I am here to live out loud as well…to press on toward the goal and win the prize for which I have been called heavenward in Christ Jesus. I will not give up until I am carried off the field on the shoulders of the One Who was raised up on the cross and then from the grave on my behalf. I serve at his pleasure and will not be defeated. To God be the glory! Let’s pray!

Mighty and Everlasting God; Strengthen and encourage me for the task to which I have been called. As I am fortified by prayer and empowered by the Holy Spirit, let me live unabashedly and unequivocally for You. This I pray in Jesus’ Mighty Name. Amen!

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