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I Love My Church Series – Part 2
“Make A Difference”
Read Ephesians 4:16
When the church is working right, there’s nothing like it. The church is a place to make a difference. We were created to serve and make a difference.
Forbes Magazine had an article on ‘The Surprising Benefits of Volunteering’. From research they found:
A. Volunteering makes you feel like you have more time.
Wharton professor Cassie Mogilner found through research that those who volunteer their time felt they had more time.
Many times people don’t volunteer because they say they don’t have the time, but research shows that when you volunteer, you actually get time back, and you become what she calls time affluent.
B. Volunteering helps you have a healthier body.
A corporation for a national and community service report noted,
‘Research demonstrates that volunteering leads to better health. Those who volunteer have lower mortality rates, greater functional ability, and lower rates of depression compared to those who do not volunteer.’
C. Volunteering helps you feel happier.
The London School of Economics examined the relationship between volunteering and happiness and found the more people volunteer, the happier they were. ‘Volunteering builds empathy, strengthens social bonds, and makes you smile.’
You were created to give your time, your talents, and your energy to others.
The Bible says, we were created to do the good work God has planned for us (Ephesians 2:10).
I Love My Church Principle: ‘My church is where I can make an eternal difference.’
Generally, when you volunteer you get a temporary benefit as mentioned in the Forbes survey. But when you volunteer in the church, you’re making an eternal difference.
HOW TO MAKE AN ETERNAL DIFFERENCE WITH MY LIFE:
1. Ask God To Use You To Make a Difference.
Do you want God to use you? God is waiting for us to say, “Will You use me?” God asked Isaiah, ‘Whom should I send as a messenger to this people? Who will go for us?’ (6:8). God wants to use us to make an eternal difference. Are you ready to say yes? That’s where it all starts.
2. ACTIVATE MY UNIQUE GIFTS TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE
God uses us to make a difference when He activates our unique spiritual gifts that He gives us when we become a Christian.
1 Peter 4:10, tells us God has given every believer a gift to serve each other.
These gifts are usually not foreign to you and are often things you are already good at. They are passions that you already have or skills you used before you were a believer. God adds His power and blessing to it, and you can use these new gifts according to your own personality and makeup to make a difference for eternity.
1 Corinthians 12 and Romans 12:6-8 provide a list of spiritual gifts. To help you understand your spiritual gifts, contact our church office for an inventory of spiritual gifts. It asks a series of questions that you can use to evaluate what you’re good at and passionate about, which can help you understand your spiritual gifts.
Feel free to email us the results if you’re okay doing that.
Examples of Spiritual gifts
- Often time people with this gift also use it in their career. In the Church you can help organize to ensure things run smoothly.
- This is when someone is facing a decision, and is able to discern what is the best Biblical path.
- You make people feel better by affirming and building them up.
- Every Christian is called to give our tithes and our offerings, but a person with this gift goes above and beyond that. It has nothing to do with how much you make, but with the desire to give over and above your tithes and offerings.
- If you have the gift of leadership then somebody must be following you. If no one’s following you, you probably don’t have this gift.
- All Christians care for each other but this person is supercharged and really caring for people.
- This person likes to study and dig deeper into Scripture.
- You love to start and do new things.
- This person goes above and beyond and really has a deep burden for those who are without Jesus Christ.
- All Christians have faith, but this person seems to see further than everybody else, pulling the rest of us up.
- This person loves to host people and make them feel at home.
- This is a person is very compassionate. They bend over backwards showing mercy to others.
- You’re willing to help and serve in whatever way you can.
- This means you can walk along with someone and help them stay on path Biblically and in God’s will.
3. ADJUST MY SCHEDULE TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE
So even though we ask God to use us, and even though we have these unique gifts, we still have to make serving a priority. Many Christians want to serve but are too busy. As you mature in Christ, one of the trade offs that you make is that you say no to some good things, so you can say yes to some best things.
Are you willing to adjust your schedule to fulfill God’s best for your life?
4. ACCEPT GOD’S BLESSING WHEN I MAKE A DIFFERENCE
There are amazing blessings that come when you are willing to serve. God blesses us when we bless others.
When you bless others with your time, God blesses your time. Bless others with your gifts, talents, and energy, God blesses your gifts, talents and use you to make an eternal difference. You’ll be abundantly blessed (Proverbs 11:25).
1 Corinthians 15:58 tells us nothing we do for God is ever wasted. Isn’t that incredible? When we give ourselves and use our gifts for God, He always blesses us. So take this challenge. Take a chance. Find a place of service.
Jesus in Luke 6:38 reminds us that when we “Give to others, God will give to you.”
The Forbes article found the same thing. Give your time, you get your time back. Give your energy, you get health back.
I pray today that you will choose to make an eternal difference with your life.
This sermon was preached by Pastor Elio Marrocco on September 9, 2018 at New Life Christian Church