On the accompanying video, the pastor isurging us to reach out to others to invite them to know Jesus Christ. You may know someone who is, or you yourself may be feeling hopeless and worthless and wondering what is yourpurpose in life. God has plan for you, and through a relationship with God, you can find the joy in life that comes when you invite Jesus into your heart.
What to Do When You Feel Hopeless
Read the verse from the Bible that will help you find your way to knowing God's will for your life. If you do not yet have a relationship with God, each the video on the right of this post to find out how you can invite Jesus to become your savior and begin a relationship with the true, living God..
Romans 12 verse 1. Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
Make a Difference in Someone's Life
If you want to be the best in your business or have expertise, you must go all in. If you want to be the best in the NFL, the best in major league baseball, the best Olympian, the best musician, you must sacrifice a lot to do that. But heroes are people who don't just sacrifice, they sacrifice to help other people.
You see, watching the Olympics I stayed up too late. I admit it as well and watched games I never knew existed. I'm not even a fan of swimming and I don't know about it. I know there's a lot of swimming families here on the Rockwell Campus, but Michael Phelps, whether you're a swimmer or not, was just inspiring to watch.
I mean the guy walked away from Rio with a total of all his Olympic career wins, with 28 medals. I mean, just to put that into perspective, I mean number two is nine medals, the most medals ever won, but it's interesting most people look at that and they even see interviews where Michael Phelps said, 'I'm at the best place I've ever been in my life,' after the Olympics and people say of course he is.
Feeling Hopeless and Worthless
I mean, he won all the those gold medals. He stood in front of the Wheaties box, of course, he's in the best place of his life. But most people don't know the rest of that story because two years ago, literally two years ago, Michael Phelps was in a rehab addiction center feeling like his life was worthless – feeling hopeless.
As a matter of fact, he literally said in interviews, you can Google this where he said,
I really felt like I should just end my life because the world would be a better place without me - Michael Phelps
So, how can he get there? In the Book of Judges in the Old Testament, Gideon was there also. He just felt like I really can't make a difference, I'm not really here for any purpose.
Purpose Driven Life
Well, while he was in that rehab center, his good friend, a good Christian friend and also an NFL athlete Ray Lewis, came to see him and gave him the Purpose Driven Life. That book is just packed full of scripture and the very first page, Michael Phelps opened it up, and the very first line in the book said, It's Not About You.
And he kept on reading and he found out that God created him for a purpose and that he was wired to make a difference and there was a reason why he was on the earth, and he decided I'm going to go for one more Olympics but this time I'm going to go win all the gold. Although he is a really intense competitor, the people around Rio at the time talked about how he'd walk in and he'd talk to athletes who were, just like their first time there, he talked to athletes who probably weren't even going to qualify to actually try to win a gold medal. He was nice to everyone. It's the reason why he was voted by all the athletes of America to carry the flag for the entire country.
How to Make a Difference in the World
It is why after he won all the medals he won this year in Rio. He said after that, I'm in the best place of my life because he said I'm done with swimming. Swimming wasn't his identity. It was just something God used for a purpose and now he's go to get in for the rest of his life on the very thing that Gideon got on - the very thing we are called to do, and that is to make a difference.
But it's going to require sacrifice, what people opinions are about but you want to go all in. And when I talk about this impact card, when I talk about that you can make a difference, maybe you think today I'm supposed to say that. Well, of course you are a pastor, you want me to do this, but I want you to hear from somebody who really wants you to do this.
There is someone whose name was on an impact card two years ago, was written down two years ago. And because of someone praying and giving verbal witness and inviting this person to come, they see the impact that's made on them and now they want to make an impact as well. Watch this.
” Hi my name is Michael. I have no idea what an impact card is and if someone told me that they were praying for a week ago, a month ago or whatever, it would have really freaked me out. I got married to my wife and we were together searching for something. We're meeting people and going out and seeing these bands, and going to bars and thinking we're having a really great time and as those great times were happening, we were growing further and further apart from each other.
Fast forward four years later, she moves out, I'm home all by myself, just kind of waiting for the time to go to bed and wake up and just kind of do it all over again. And I really didn't know how many more days I could really get through doing that. Throughout all this time where I'm struggling in life, I'm cutting this guy's hair and he's talking to me about God, and you should come to my church.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. And suddenly it was just like well, it will make my mom happy so I guess I'll just kind of check it out. So, one Sunday I honestly talked myself into going and I almost didn't go. I felt like I was the only person in the room that day. God was talking to me through the guy on stage and he was basically just describing my life, and how lonely I have been.
God walked into my heart that day and He flipped on the switch and it was just like everything is different now. Every single second of my life since that moment has been different. And if you're listening to this right now and you're praying for someone, if it's your hair stylist, person at the gas station, random person you met on the street, and you feel like it's not going anywhere, just do not give up because I had dozens and dozens of people that did not give up praying for me and if they did, I'd be lost forever. “
So keep praying and don't give up. Keep praying and don't give up. I'm going to ask you to take an impact card, write some names on it. I'm going to ask you to realize that the whole strategy of this church is to fill the seats that you may see that are empty in this space. It's for you to reach the people you're uniquely wired and already connected to reach and so, please, when you get this impact card, please write the names of people that you know, don't write the names of famous people that you'll never meet but would be really cool to pray for okay? Please don't say okay Lord, Taylor Swift, Eminem and LeBron James, let's do this all right? You'll never see them.
You can write down the names of people you already know their names, you already know who God's put in your life and when you get those names on there, I'm going to ask you to put this card, not in your wallet, not in your purse, you won't see it again till Christmas. Put it somewhere where you'll see it.
Put it on your refrigerator, you go there a lot, unless the person is on this card comes over to your house, okay? Then it's weird then they go why is my name on your refrigerator? Oh my bad, make an impact on my fridge sorry. Okay so maybe you need to put it somewhere that's more private but where you'll see it every day.
And just to be real there's a place that most of us go everyday and we sit down for a second, all right. Just look over, I'm supposed to make a difference in somebody's life, all right? What I'm saying is do whatever you've need to do to remind yourself that you are wired to make a difference and you can impact God's world.
It's been the plan since the beginning. We close with this verse. The last words of Jesus before he ascended into heaven: Mathew 28. “Go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given.” And be sure of these, somebody came just for this phrase today; “I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Let's pray about that together. Heavenly Father as we bow before you we're humbled that you want us to be a part of the rescue mission, and we also realize God it's not up to us to save anybody but just to share, just to pray, just to give all that we are and just to go to them as you lead us and just to say come and see, and right now we know that names are coming to our minds and I pray God, those names would make it through a piece of paper.
And it would be names that we can lift up before you and pray according to your will that none will perish, but all would come to repentance. And Father, help us not to hide or hunker down in our situation, but just like Gideon, open our eyes to the mission around us. We're on a rescue mission.
And Father thank you that you've wired us to change the world by reaching one person. In light of the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus, Father what else can we do but sacrifice in many ways to reach others as well. And so Jesus we thank you, for your forgiveness and the hope that you offer us, and help us have the courage to share that forgiveness and that love and that hope, with the people around us.