Title: Double Impact: Embracing Your Calling To Lead (MESSAGE NOTES)
Passage: 2 Kings 2
Main Point: Become the Leader God Has Called You To Be.
INTRO: Busy Making Every Day Count (From Holman New Testament Commentary)
Zoyohiko Kagawa was a frail teenager in Japan. One pretty day he decided to go swimming. After frolicking and enjoying the invigoration of a good swim, he slowly stroked his way back to the beach. Reaching it, he reached down to pull himself up on his feet and out of the water. Instead, he collapsed. Fortunately, friends saw his plight, rushed to him, and pulled him from the shallow water. Minutes later a doctor stood over him. A quick examination was all it took. “This young man has an advanced case of tuberculosis. He has less than a year to live.”
Told of the prognosis, Kagawa looked up with a calm smile: “Then I must get busy immediately. I shall have to make every day count.” The dedication to make life count did not prove easy. He lived in a poor fisherman’s hut. Friends steered clear of him, afraid they would catch the disease. One man came—Dr. Myers, a Christian missionary. He even slept in Kagawa’s hovel for four nights. “Aren’t you afraid of me?” Kagawa asked. “No,” Dr. Myers replied. “Your disease is contagious, but love is more contagious.”
That day Kagawa dedicated his life to love the poor of Japan in their hovels as Dr. Myers had loved him. Preaching on the streets, he chanced to meet a former convict who pointed him to a “haunted house” where a murder had been committed. At least the rent was cheap. For fourteen years Kagawa lived there, even bringing his young bride there. Drunks beat him up several times. Still, he dedicated himself to live the life of his poor countrymen. As he preached Christ, he organized labor groups among the poor. This brought him a prison sentence. In prison he began writing books, forty in all. Finally the people realized what stood before them. “How like this Jesus he preaches about is Kagawa,” they said. God gave him more than one year to live, and he lived each of them as if it were the last, bringing new hope to the poor of the land.
Such dedication is what Jesus demonstrated in his ministry and what he called for in his teaching. Luke 11 is filled with the words of Jesus that show the meaning and direction of a life dedicated totally in faith to God.
Butler, T. C. (2000). Luke (Vol. 3, p. 183). Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers.
Story Summary: Elijah’s Last Day To Live
—> Elijah was an amazing prophet in difficult times
—> He is famous for several things such as birds feeding him in the wilderness, a ladies last meal lasting months, calling down fire from heaven, praying for rain and also praying that it would not rain.
—> 1 Kings 19 we discover he was ordinary person just like any of us because he went from a mountain top experience to the valley of despair. God had just brought fire from heaven proving he was the one true God and that Baal was not a real god. Elijah expected revival but instead he god death threats from the queen of the land. He flees full of fear and an angel shows up and twice gives him food and rest. He then goes on a 40 day journey fasting and ends up on the side of mountain near a cave. There was an earthquake, fire and great wind. But God’s manifest presence wasn’t in any of these great events. He speaks to Elijah in a gentle whisper and reassures Elijah of his calling. You would think after fire from heaven and incredible encounter with God that is still talked about to this day… Elijah would be good to go for the rest of his life. But God’s prescription for Elijah involved more than being touched by an angel and directly hearing the voice of God. God’s plan included bringing a companion for him to fellowship with. He would have servant that would call him Master but also a mentee that he would pass his mantle on to. Immediately following his mountaintop experience with God Elijah goes and find Elisha working hard farming a field with a pair of oxen. He places his mantle on Elisha and Elisha tells him let me kiss my parents goodbye. He ends up taking that ox and the wooden yoke and making a fire and cooking the ox and throwing a great feast. He was called to serve a great prophet for God and there was no turning back. During the ox and the yoke was a huge step of faith and total commitment for him to follow Elijah with no turning back.
—> In 2 Kings 2 we discover Elijah on his last day and the incredible story. Imagine discovering you don’t one year to live but only one day. What would you do with that day? What if you discovered you parents had one day to live? Or a great mentor who has had a great influence on your life? Like Kagawa, it can altar the course and direction of your life…. whether for a few day or a few months.
From 2 Kings 2 … we can discover 3 lessons in becoming the leader God has called you to be… (leadership is influence in your circle)
—> Parents … influencers in the home
—> Christians … influencers in the world (light, salt, witnesses)
—> Workplace… influencers for a better work environment
—> Community… seek the peace of our city (Jer 29:13)
—> Church… helping more people be disciples who make disciples. Using whatever gift you have to encourage and strengthen people.
- To become a great leader, you must first become a great follower.
1 Kings 19:21 So Elisha left him and went back. He took his yoke of oxen and slaughtered them. He burned the plowing equipment to cook the meat and gave it to the people, and they ate. Then he set out to follow Elijah and became his servant.
2 Kings 2:1-2 When the Lord was about to take Elijah up to heaven in a whirlwind, Elijah and Elisha were on their way from Gilgal. 2 Elijah said to Elisha, “Stay here; the Lord has sent me to Bethel.”
But Elisha said, “As surely as the Lord lives and as you live, I will not leave you.” So they went down to Bethel.
SHOW MAP AND SUMMARIZE REST OF JOURNEY
3 Times Elijah saids stay and Elisha responded I will follow you to the end.
2 Kings 2:4,6 “As surely as the Lord lives and as you live, I will not leave you.”
Illustration: Samwise Gamgee’s commitment not to leave Frodo Baggins and he runs into the water to follow him even though he did not know how to swim… I will follow you and help you or I die. A fellowship that did not end.
2 Kings 2:11a As they were walking along and talking together
illustration: when i was an assistant to the youth pastor, I made it my commitment to everything I could to make Pastor Asa the best youth pastor in Chicago.
illustration: philosophy of youth ministry - “flow in the river” principal… when we were doing our own thing with our own ideas… things were not flowing well… but when we flowed with the vision of the senior pastor … things flowed well and the youth group exploded.
POINT: FOLLOW THE LEADERS YOU WANT TO BECOME.
2) To become a Spirit-filled leader, you simply must ask with the right motives.
2 Kings 2:9 “Let me inherit a double portion of your spirit.”
Luke 11:1-13Jesus teaches disciples to pray.
v.9Ask, Seek, Knock (present active… ask and keep asking)
v. 13 “how much more with your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask HIm.”
Luke 11:13 in the amplified version (notice the verb tense in caps) If you, then, being evil [that is, sinful by nature], know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ASK AND CONTINUE TO ASK Him!”
John Piper: Jesus teaches in verse 13 that our prevailing in prayer should be a prevailing for the Holy Spirit.
"If you then who are evil know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!"
It is no accident that Luke tells us in Luke 3:21f. that while Jesus was praying, the Holy Spirit descended on him like a dove. Or that the outpouring of the Spirit at Pentecost came as the climax of a ten-day prayer vigil. Or (in Acts 4:31) that when the church had prayed, the place where they gathered was shaken and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit. Prevailing prayer is the pathway to the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.
And lest you think God is distant from you, and inattentive to you when the Spirit tarries, listen to this encouragement. When you prevail in prayer for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, more is happening in your life through this prevailing prayer than you would ever imagine. God waits because our prevailing is good for us. May the Lord forbid that we would lose heart and fail in the very thing needful: mighty prevailing prayer.
James 4:2b-3…You do not have because you do not ask God. 3 When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.
BIBLE ILLUS Acts 8 - Simon the Sorcerer
18 - When Simon saw that the Spirit was given at the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money
20 Peter answered: “May your money perish with you, because you thought you could buy the gift of God with money! 21 You have no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God. 22 Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord in the hope that he may forgive you for having such a thought in your heart. 23 For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin.”
1 Timothy 3:1Here is a trustworthy saying: Whoever aspires to be an overseer desires a noble task.
ILLUSTRATION: Prayed all night until about 4 in the morning before my first time speaking to an anticipated crowd of 1000 people. Had a picture in mind of God unzipping my back and getting inside of me… which I interpreted to mean God was going to speak through me and use me an instrument. The other two main youth leaders remarked later… “What got into Dwayne… he speaking in a different way.” POINT: BOLDLY ASK AND KEEP ASKING
POINT: ASK BOLDLY WITH RIGHT MOTIVES
Transition: Why would God want to give you a greater filling of His Holy Spirit?
3) To become a heroic leader, you must face difficulties head on!
2 Kings 2:10 “You have asked a difficult thing”
All that Elisha would go through…
2:11-22 a city with polluted water
2:23-25a town so wicked not one kid had respect for a man of God… all the kids were mocking him.. “baldy”
3:1-27 dealing with evil kings … leading armies to war
4:1-7a bankrupt widow about to lose two sons to slavery
4:38-41 poisonous stew about to kills some at the school of prophets… healed the food
4:22-44 almost out of food for the school of prophets… 20 barley loaves feed 100 men.
5:1-19 a foreign military general travels from afar asking for deliverance from leprosy
5:2-27his servant Gehazi get greedy and dishonest… catches leprosy for the rest of his life.
6:1-7a prophecy student loses an ax head in the water… student debt :-)
6:8-23A king with the latest horses and chariots come chasing him down… is able to see a spiritual army of demons and God’s army of angels “greater are those who are with us”
6:24-7:20 a 7 year famine so strong two moms get in fight over eating their kids in their state of starvation
8:1-6One of his supporters loses land but gets it restored.
8:7-30foreseeing painful events that yet to come
2 Kings 8:10-12 10 Elisha answered, “Go and say to him, ‘You will certainly recover.’ Nevertheless,[a] the Lord has revealed to me that he will in fact die.” 11 He stared at him with a fixed gaze until Hazael was embarrassed. Then the man of God began to weep.
12 “Why is my lord weeping?” asked Hazael.
“Because I know the harm you will do to the Israelites,” he answered. “You will set fire to their fortified places, kill their young men with the sword, dash their little children to the ground, and rip open their pregnant women.”
“you have asked a difficult thing”
Purpose for the Power…
ILLUS… Suffering brings sweet fellowship with the Lord…
—> Francis Chan story of Korean Missionaries captive in afghanistan
—> Brother Your in chinese prison felt closeness to God like no other place.
1 Thessalonians 1:6 You became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you welcomed the message in the midst of severe suffering with the joy given by the Holy Spirit.
J.R.R. Tolkein - The Fellowship of the Ring
QUOTE: “I wish it need not have happened in my time," said Frodo.
"So do I," said Gandalf, "and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”
Multiplying our Congregation into two is a great difficulty, but our purpose is to cooperate with God… if God is in it … that is where we want to be… and in the difficulties we havea great opportunity to experience the presence of God and the filling of the Holy Spirit like no other…
Ephesians 5:15 Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. 17 Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. 18 Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, 19 speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, 20 always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
DO HEROIC THINGS>>>
face the difficult areas that are holding you back head on… find a spiritual mentor to help you get victories in those areas… don’t be a drain… serve them… and take the steps they prescribe for you.
after become a great life long follower / leaner… mentor others and teach other what God is showing you.
the church is the people not the building… if you only come to the building … you are missing out your greatest opportunity to connect to the people … small groups…
the opportunity for service will be greater than every before … because multiplication creates vacuums and God always fills those vacuums… start serving today … and perhaps you will be a leader tomorrow. (in due time)
“Making the Most of Every Opportunity”
— we have great opportunities ahead… the destiny of neighborhoods hang in the balance.
If not us, who?
If not here, where?
If not now, when?
Commit to pray daily.. prayer line once a week
Commit to 35 days of Bible Reading (journal or post to facebook)
Commit to connect to a crowded house group.
Don’t miss a sunday over the next 4 weeks. (listen online if you do miss)