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This was a sermon preached on Pentecost Sunday

Pentecostals of South Haven – South Haven, MI – May, 3rd, 2020

The Potter’s House Church – Battle Creek, MI – July 19th, 2020

and transcribed to text.

As Americans, we love to roll up our sleeves and do it ourselves. We have an entire television channel, the DIY Network, dedicating to helping us tackle projects on our own—without relying on professional help. Rightfully, we feel a sense of pride after mastering new skills and empowering ourselves to build or fix something around the house.

While initiative and self-reliance are admirable traits, we encounter a project that dwarfs our amateur abilities sooner or later. In these moments, the wise course of action would be to ask for help. Yet in our stubborn independence, we refuse to admit our need for aid, choosing to press alone. 

As the television show DIY Disasters attests, our attempts at self-sufficiency routinely backfire. Many of our remodeling projects end up in ruins, leaving property damaged and in need of repair.  

TOP FIVE DIY DISASTERS ARE: 

  1. Spilling paint/glue 
  2. Damaging a wall 
  3. Breaking a window 
  4. Breaking furniture 
  5. Damaging a ceiling 

This tendency to be over-ambitious is also putting the safety of DIY enthusiasts at risk, with 220,000 people ending up in hospital every year due to their keenness. 

  • 41,000 Ladders and step ladders
  • 15,000 Saws  
  • 6,000 Hammer related accidents. 

For the 20% of DIY enthusiasts who resort to calling in experts to fix their mistakes, thereʼs a heavy price to pay for not getting it right. 

People across the country spend an average of $3,000, having their DIY mistakes fixed.

We are not just DIY experts on home projects; we are DIY experts on EVERYTHING! Just look at your Facebook page in 2020 alone:

  • JANUARY  Impeachment experts without a law degree 
  • FEBRUARY – Foreign wars expert with no military leadership experience
  • MARCH  Health experts without a doctorate (or any degree) in infectious diseases
  • APRIL – Economic experts without an MBA and a cumulative wealth of $213.71
  • MAY – Constitutional lawyers on the right to wear/ not wear masks and to attend/ not attend Church services
  • JUNE – Human-rights Activists – using social media as our ONLY source
  • JULY – Conspiracy theorists – about everything!

Everyone’s an Expert, But Not Everyone Is a Master – Seth Godin

Every time something significant hits the news, everyone quickly becomes an expert due to the university of google. It’s ok to admit that there are some things that you do not have enough knowledge about to form an educated or well-informed opinion.

HAIRCUT STORY

In the midst of the quarantine, my hair began to grow very long and bushy. I will be honest here and say my greatest fear is not that people see my long hair but that they see my gray hair. I don’t even mind having gray hair. We know that gray hair a sign of wisdom. I would enjoy having gray hair sprinkled evenly all over my head in a distinguished manner. 

However, the problem is that all my gray hair congregates in one place as a strip right down the middle of my head—a skunk stripe. Therefore, I endeavor to keep my hair very short to avoid looking like a skunk.

To keep this non-skunk look, I must have a haircut every two weeks. I sit down, they take a half clipper and shave my head. I then pay $20 for the haircut and give a five-dollar tip, which equals $25 every two weeks, which is $50 a month, which equals $600 a year.

However, I have not been able to get my haircut because of haircutting institutions’ doors shuttered, and my hair was OUT OF CONTROL!

So, I came up with a brilliant idea. I went to Walmart, and for a total of $55.00, I purchased a pair of hair clippers. In all of my wisdom, I realized that with only two haircuts, the total pay of one month, I could pay for the ENTIRE YEAR worth of haircuts, if I simply did it myself.  

Things started well. I was able to cut my hair in the front, and things were nice and even. Then I nicked myself on my forehead and had blood running down my face. 

My daughter then told me that my hair looked pretty good in the front, but that in the back, my neck’s hairline looked more like an “M” than a straight line.

THE TRUTH IS, THERE ARE SOME THINGS WE CANNOT DO BY OURSELVES.

SAUL’S DISABILITATING IMPATIENCE

King Saul made three costly mistakes because his pride led him to believe that he could do it himself.

1 Samuel 13:8-13 And he tarried seven days, according to the set time that Samuel had appointed: but Samuel came not to Gilgal; and the people were scattered from him. 9. And Saul said, Bring hither a burnt offering to me, and peace offerings. And he offered the burnt offering. 10. And it came to pass, that as soon as he had made an end of offering the burnt offering, behold, Samuel came; and Saul went out to meet him, that he might salute him. 11. And Samuel said, What hast thou done? And Saul said, Because I saw that the people were scattered from me, and that thou camest not within the days appointed, and that the Philistines gathered themselves together at Michmash; 12. Therefore said I, The Philistines will come down now upon me to Gilgal, and I have not made supplication unto the Lord: I forced myself therefore, and offered a burnt offering. 13. And Samuel said to Saul, Thou hast done foolishly: thou hast not kept the commandment of the Lord thy God, which he commanded thee: for now would the Lord have established thy kingdom upon Israel for ever.

My daughter, Rosie’s favorite phrase as a TODDLER, was, “I DO IT MYSELF.” That motto is okay for a toddler but not the King of Israel. Saul became impatient. He felt he could do it himself. Saul believed that because the priest of the Lord had taken too long to arrive, he could go ahead and make the sacrifice and fulfill the office of the priest, even though he was not a priest. In doing so, he violated the law of God because HE WANTED IT NOW, and felt he could do it himself.

1) HE DID NOT TRUST THE PRIEST OF GOD.

1 Samuel 13:11 And Samuel said, What hast thou done? And Saul said, Because I saw that the people were scattered from me, and that thou camest not within the days appointed.

As Michiganders, we were in quarantine for 70 days this year. Many of us became restless. We feel as though we can do it ourselves. 

We weren’t even in our church building for nearly 70 days. Some feel and believe that they no longer need a church because all they have to do is watch church online, and don’t have to come to church anymore. 

However, that is the SAUL spirit within us feeling that we can be our own priest and that we can do it ourselves.

The truth is, we need the church now more than ever before. There are some things we simply cannot do for ourselves. We CANNOT be our own pastor. We need an UNBIASED man of God who can look at our lives and see things we cannot see and can help us in areas where we cannot help ourselves. 

You need the church. You need your pastor. You need the body of Christ. You cannot worship to yourself. We must worship the Lord our God!

2) HE DID NOT TRUST THE WAYS OF GOD.

1 Samuel 13:12 Therefore said I, The Philistines will come down now upon me to Gilgal, and I have not made supplication unto the Lord: I forced myself therefore, and offered a burnt offering.

Saul performed a burnt offering to GOD, himself. Saul had not kept the commandment of the LORD. He committed the sin of impatience, unbelieving GOD’s timing. Saul tried to do the work of a priest by HIMSELF

Every December, I am privileged to go to Dallas, Texas, for an evangelist retreat. In that meeting, there are many mighty men of God. Evangelists that are full of faith and work in the Gifts of the Spirit. Many of the men in that room see thousands of people healed every year through their ministries. Reverend Doug Klinedinst, whom God uses in the gift of healing, said in one of our meetings, that even though God uses him with the gift of healing when he is sick and generally even when his family is sick, He usually has to call another minister to pray for him and his family for healing. Yes, he prays for himself, and yes, he prays for his family, but the miracle usually comes from ANOTHER MINISTER. The reason for this is simple; God expects us to be dependent upon him. It is not God’s intention that we can heal ourselves. We must be dependent upon the plan of God for His healing, and His salvation. 

3) HE DID NOT TRUST THE PLAN OF GOD

1 Samuel 13:13 And Samuel said to Saul, Thou hast done foolishly: thou hast not kept the commandment of the Lord thy God, which he commanded thee: for now would the Lord have established thy kingdom upon Israel for ever.

Saul lost The promise of God; the Kingship was removed from him because he did not trust God.

SPIRITUAL BUYERS REMORSE

My wife has always had buyer’s remorse on every big purchase or decision that she makes. 

After she bought her first house, it took her six months to move into it. That only happened because Gran’s power went out, so Gran and Bobbi had to stay at Bobbi’s house. Once the power returned, Gran went back to her house, and Bobbi decided to stay in her home. 

Every new car Bobbi has gotten since we’ve been married, she hated the first few months. 

Every job she has gotten, she had buyers remorse until after she got working on the job. 

She even had buyers remorse with me! We had been dating for about nine months. It was no secret she wanted to get married. I was having a hard time coming to that conclusion. We were on the phone late one night talking about the future of our relationship. The next morning I said to myself, “I’m going to ask that girl to marry me!” She later told me she said to herself, “Oh no, he’s going to ask me to marry him! Her buyers’ remorse with me lasted at least for the first two years we were married!

I have felt all week strongly in my spirit that there are some members of The Potter’s House Church that are feeling spiritual buyers’ remorse.  

We have been preaching FAITH for months. Last Sunday was one of the most incredible services I’ve ever attended. Watching the display of faith as our church members gave $104,000 for “the church that Faith built campaign” was incredible!

Many times after I am involved in a SPIRITUAL high of a revival or a great moving of God, I often feel a major LET DOWN in my flesh. There were families that gave $1,000, $2,000, $2,500, $5,000, $10,000, $50,000. You felt really good and full of faith when you released that money to the Lord. But Monday, Wednesday, Friday, or maybe even this morning, you felt, “Oh no, what did we do!”

What you are feeling is the “FAITH ZONE” in action! You have been stretched beyond your physical limits, and there is a temptation to try to orchestrate events to produce your miracle.

You’ve heard about all of the other miracles that are already happening within the church, but for you, there’s been nothing.

It has been seven days since you released the seed of faith on behalf of your family. It was seven days that Saul had to wait on Samuel, but he got impatient and took matters into his own hands. 

Just be patient, God will keep his promise! He already anointed you a spiritual “King” when you were born into His Kingdom with the gift of the Holy Ghost. He will deliver his promise! Remember, this is a two-year commitment. God will provide!

CONCLUSION

His ways are higher than my ways. Yes, I can try to do it myself, but God in His righteousness has plans that I cannot even think of or conceive. I understand that things in our nation right now are very bleak. I remember Pastor Hopper saying a few months ago, “GOD DOES SOME OF HIS BEST WORK IN THE DARK.” If we simply trust God’s timing, God will perform his best work through this darkness. 

In this altar call, we will play the video of Jimmy Needham’s song, “Clear The Stage.” As you come to the altar, search your heart for any area you are trying to control things. Then surrender it all to God.

I challenge you to come to the altar and pray with someone ELSE. Remember, don’t try to do this yourself. Rely on someone else’s prayers today.

“CLEAR THE STAGE”
by Jimmy Needham

We must not worship something that’s not even worth it
Clear the stage, make some space for the one who deserves it

Anything I put before my God is an idol
Anything I want with all my heart is an idol
Anything I can’t stop thinking of is an idol
Anything that I give all my love is an idol

‘Cause I can sing all I want to
Yes, I can sing all I want to

And we can sing all we want to
And we can sing all we want to
We can sing all we want to
And still get it wrong
Worship is more than a song

Clear the stage and set the sound and lights ablaze
If that’s the measure you must take to crush the idols

SERMON SLIDES

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