“When Life Gets Serious” – Part IV

     So, we have been talking about “When Life Gets Serious”, and this is Part IV. We will move forward building upon our discussion from last week. Now, you will need to take some notes on this evening.

     We all can agree that life has gotten pretty tough!

QUESTION: How do you intend to make it during these “tough times”?

     During this “serious season”, God is going to give you three choices. He will place three choices in front of you.

     These are the same three choices that He gave the Hebrews, the Israelites, His old testament people.

     You will need to decide, make a choice,….choose, if you will:

  • Choice # 1- Survive
  • Choice # 2- Arrive
  • Choice # 3- Thrive

                      Mount Pisgah those are your three choices.

                         1). Deuteronomy 30:15; 19- See, I have set beforethee this day life and good, and

                             death and evil 19 I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I

                             have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life,

                             that both thou and thy seed may live         

You must make a choice. And if by chance you should choose, not to make a choice, that would equal death. The only ones who will make it is those who:

     1). Make a decision.

     2). Make the right decision.

God always allows you choose between superlatives: Good, Better, or Best.

  • Choice # 1- SURVIVE

When you choose to “survive”, what you are basically saying is, “I choose to stay right where I’m at”! You cry out, “Why did the good ole days have to change? I’m gonna sit right here and hope that they roll back around”.

Listen Mount Pisgah: The good ole days are gone! Let’s face it. Go ahead and take your head out of the sand. We now have a new normal.

DECISIVE QUESTION: So, what will you do?

Notice what the Israelites said and did, His old testament people, during their “serious season”:

     1). Numbers 11:4-5- And the mixt multitude that was among them fell a lusting: and the children of Israel also wept again, and said, Who shall give us flesh to eat? We remember the fish, which we did eat in Egypt freely; the cucumbers, and the melons, and the leeks, and the onions, and the garlick:

     What they were basically saying is that “we remember the good ole days. We want them back”!

     2). Numbers 14:1-4- 14 And all the congregation lifted up their voice, and cried; and the people wept that night. And all the children of Israel murmured against Moses and against Aaron: and the whole congregation said unto them, Would God that we had died in the land of Egypt! or would God we had died in this wilderness! And wherefore hath the Lord brought us unto this land, to fall by the sword, that our wives and our children should be a prey? were it not better for us to return into Egypt? And they said one to another, Let us make a captain, and let us return into Egypt.

     They were basically saying, “yesterday was a good place Why did everything have to change? We wish that everything was still the same. Bottom line: We could have survived in Egypt”.

QUESTION MOUNT PISGAH:

     ___   Would you rather survive?

     ___   Would you rather thrive?

     They said, “This was a “good” place! But God had a “better” place.

Again, God will always allow you to choose between superlatives: Good,  Better, or Best.

  • Choice # 2- ARRIVE

God always has another spiritual place/level that He wants you to arrive at. He will allow the “good” times to dry up; because He wants to move you into a “better” season.

     1). I Kings 17:2-4; 7;  9- And the word of the Lord came unto him, saying, Get thee hence, and turn thee eastward, and hide thyself by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan. And it shall be, that thou shalt drink of the brook; and I have commanded the ravens to feed thee there. And it came to pass after a while, that the brook dried up, because there had been no rain in the land. Arise, get thee to Zarephath, which belongeth to Zidon, and dwell there: behold, I have commanded a widow woman there to sustain thee.

     When He says, “Arise”, that does not mean that He will force you to go; or that you have to go. You do have a choice in the matter. Elijah thought that he was in a “good” place. But God had a “better” place!!!

POINT CONCERNING PROVISION:

     The raven could only give him a beak full.

     The woman could give him a bowl full.

Listen, during this “serious season” God has a specific place where He is taking you; where He wants you to arrive.

This is what He wanted His people to see:

     1). Exodus 3:12– And he said, Certainly I will be with thee; and this shall be a token unto thee, that I have sent thee: When thou hast brought forth the people out of Egypt, ye shall serve God upon this mountain.

God wanted to bring them “out” of Egypt. They wanted to go “back” to Egypt. They missed the “good ole days”.

     2). Exodus 7:16- And thou shalt say unto him, The Lord God of the Hebrews hath sent me unto thee, saying, Let my people go, that they may serve me in the wilderness: and, behold, hitherto thou wouldest not hear.

     Now, God never intended for them to stay in the wilderness; but it was “better” than yesterday when they were slaves. He had a “better” plan.

     Right now, we are in a wilderness season. But God does not want you or I to stay here!

One may ask, “Well preacher, why are we here?”

     1). Deuteronomy 8:2a- And thou shalt remember all the way which the Lord thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart,

Mount Pisgah God just showed us one of the reasons why we are here!!! But He dose not intend for us to stay here. But that choice is ours.

This is the necessary middle ground between “survive” and “thrive”. We are standing in the middle of “yesterday” and “tomorrow”. Between “surviving” and “thriving”.

They “arrived” at Mount Sinai…, in the wilderness. But it was only meant to be a layover.

  • Choice # 3- THRIVE

QUESTION: Do you plan to stay in the wilderness? The choice is yours.

Again, God will always allow you to choose between superlatives: Good, better, or best.

They thought that they were in a “good” place (Egypt). But God executed a plan to get them to a “better” place (Mount Sinai).  Although His ultimate goal for you and I, is His “best” place” (the Promise Land).

     1). Deuteronomy 2:24-25- 24 Rise ye up, take your journey, and pass over the river Arnon: behold, I have given into thine hand Sihon the Amorite, king of Heshbon, and his land: begin to possess it, and contend with him in battle. 25 This day will I begin to put the dread of thee and the fear of thee upon the nations that are under the whole heaven, who shall hear report of thee, and shall tremble, and be in anguish because of thee.

Notice, God is telling them to leave the place where they had “arrived”. And to go to another place where they could “thrive”.

But, they would have to “contend with the enemy in battle!” In other words, what got you here, won’t keep you here. You’re gonna have to raise your game. You’re gonna have to fight!

Mount Pisgah, during this “serious season”, if you stay where you are, and do what you’ve always done, you may “survive”; but you will not “arrive”; and you will not “thrive”.

FINAL QUESTION – Do you plan to (choose one):

     ___ Survive

     ___ Arrive

     ___ Thrive