Thursday, July 28, 2005

Lighthouse day 2

Ok so today was my second day at Lighthouse Hazlemere and my turn for the talk at the start (below). It was pretty well received. The whole marquee went really quiet which I thought wasn't a great sign at first but then realised it meant that everyone was listening and not chatting!

Second night of Fresh Cafe was FABULOUS. I actually got to have a go on the human sized table football because I was encouraging a group of young people to have a go and they were one short so they encouraged me!

We have such a great team that all went smoothly and it was a great night for all. The highlight had to be the EXCLUSIVE WORLD DEBUT of UnderSide the latest Christian rock youth band. Awesome. Go guys!

So here's the talk (you won't get the Darth Vader impression which I did ad-lib but hopefully you get the message!

In these last few days you've been looking at the Star wars films and the story of Joseph and today I want to talk to you about CHOICES.

In these stories, as in life, people make important choices.

Joseph first makes some stupid choices. He decides to use his God given gift of prophetic dreams to shame his brothers and claim he is better than them.
He had a dream in which all his brothers bowed down to him

Anakin Skywalker also makes some bad choices. He follows a path that seems to lead to his destruction. He made a choice to follow the Dark side.

We are all free to make choices. That is the amazing thing about God’s creation. We’re not mere playthings of God, toys that he controls like the puppets in the drama section. God gave each of us free will. Now certainly God would like us to make certain choices. But the choice is ALWAYS ours.

In the same way that it is so much better for the children we're working with to make the CHOICE to behave. So God would rather we made the CHOICE to be good.

The choice is always YOURS.

Yet the amazing message that God has for us is that even when we make bad choices.If we acknowledge our bad choices and turn around. Then God welcomes us back

Joseph and Anakin both go through dark and difficult times because of their choices. They seem to be in wonderful positions of power and have everything anyone could want Jospeh lives in a great Egyptian palace, Anakin is practically the rule of the galaxy and yet for each of them something is missing.

When Joseph’s brothers visit him and seek his help. He has a choice to make. He could have rubbed their noses in it that he was right. There they were bowing before him but he doesn't. He acts out of love and gives them the food they need.

When Anakin (darth Vader) meets his son and his son seeks his help he has a choice. He can follow the Emperor and keep all the power he has over the universe or he can help his son.

Despite all their bad decisions of the past Joseph and Anakin make the right Choice.

They make a brave and selfless choice that seeks to help others no matter what the cost might be.

I don’t know where each of you is in your life with God.
I don’t know what choices you have facing you.
I do know that you have the power to make those choices because God gives us that power. We can rely on God's power to give us the strength to make those choices.
To make a good choice or a bad choice
I also know that God can and will forgive any bad choices you have made if you say sorry for them.

What choices to you have to make? Maybe it’s a choice to seek God

Ask God to help you make those choices

"No in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height nor depth anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 8.37-39

I want you to remember that when you're making your choices.

I want you all to make a choice today. Today make the choice to serve God and make the choice to HAVE FUN.

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