The End of Times

Transcription

topic that I don't like and I assume my
guys signed it because abouna doesn't
like it either and the reason I don't
like it is because I haven't prepared it
before I'll tell you more about why I
don't like it later but we're talking
about the end of times the reason we
talked about the end of time is for
those of you who heard the gospel today
in the sermons the last two weeks of the
year the Gospels are dedicated to the
final things that are going to happen
it's to remind us to be vigilant and so
many people get so excited about hearing
about the end of times they want to hear
the signs and they want to study the
wars and their earthquakes and they get
all excited about these things that are
terrible for some reason we have a
fascination with things that are
terrible so what if i told you i did a
lot of personal studying i listen to a
bunch of commentators and they've
examined all the events and they said
the end of times is not for another
hundred years parents like that's great
right then what if i said we'll actually
i do my own studying again and i got a
vision and it's actually going to be in
two weeks how you respond to that
question says a lot about where you're
at are you excited that Christ is coming
in a hundred years are you terrified
that he would be coming in two weeks and
I think that is why I don't like this
top for a lot of time by the way when I
say it could happen in two weeks i'm
usually off up to 14 days so if i cared
about you a lot not saying i don't i do
care about you a lot but which one would
i tell you that it's going to happen in
a hundred years or two weeks clearly
that I told you that it is coming soon
because then you
might take it seriously but people focus
on the signs and when they see the signs
then Hollywood makes another movie about
it and we're not talking about
predicting we're talking about
participating it's like getting the news
about Stormageddon and you see it's
coming it's getting colder and it's
getting colder you you're like wow it's
awesome it's coming you're sitting on
your deck and your flip-flops and you're
like hey Stormageddon is here you've
seen it coming but you've done nothing
to prepare for it the reason I happen to
be here in virginia this weekend is very
related to this topic as well it was the
end of times for my grandmother and you
know people have been saying you know we
offer you your condolences and
everything which is much appreciated you
guys are wonderful but she was a very
godly woman and I'm not sad for her at
all but it was the end of times so I
attended a funeral and these two topics
together are very eye-opening and the
whole thought when you attend a funeral
is are you ready are you ready now I'll
be honest I've attended more funerals
than I have second returns of Christ I
bet all of you have to the likelihood of
attending another funeral before the
return of Christ is likely and I'm
wondering if the next funeral I attend
could be my own am I thinking about the
funeral or am I thinking about the
second coming I almost liken it to me
worried about getting Alzheimer's
disease when I'm 80 versus dying from a
heart attack at the age that I'm at now
shouldn't I be prepared for that moment
right now so how can I prepared for not
the end of all times but the end of my
time
it reminds me when I was in fifth grade
it was the day after Halloween and one
of our classmates didn't come to school
that day and our teacher told us well
she was trick-or-treating with her
friend and her friend tripped and hit
her head on the ground and she died just
like that and I I walk a lot I mean like
every day I mean it could have happened
to me so it makes more sense that I'm
prepared for my end time so this talk
will be given from a perspective of what
if it was to happen in a week or two so
I found some verses in the Bible and
this one was actually read yesterday the
liturgy we attended the end of all
things is at hand st. Peter is writing
this in the first century because
there's a lot of persecution a lot of
them could die he says the end of all
things is at hand be serious and
watchful in your prayers in other words
pray with urgency because the end of all
things is coming what if you knew that
you had a week to live do you think your
prayers would be any different than they
are than they were yesterday but your
prayers change I know this church loves
dick baya and I have a friend you know
we talked about we joke about certainly
what is your favorite Psalm in the egg
baya the favorite one you like to pray
at night and we were joking about this
so it's the last line o daughter of
Babylon doomed to destruction happiest
he repays you for what you have done to
us he who seizes your infants and dashes
them against the rocks and lay low
you're like what what did you just read
you just read it just like that and we
joke about it because we don't take that
Psalm seriously but then when I thought
you know if I did have a week and I'm
going to read this song I'm going to pay
attention to the most important part of
it where it says how can we sing the
songs the Lord while in a foreign land
if I forget you O
Jerusalem may my right hand forget its
skill may my tongue cling to the roof of
my mouth if I do not remember you if I
do not consider Jerusalem my highest joy
see we read the Psalms every day but we
are reading them oftentimes not with a
sense of urgency if I told you that you
were going to live for one week what
would be the most important things for
you to pray about you probably move a
certain few certain things right like
your football teams in Washington like
there's no hope like just just drop that
one you let that one go you probably
won't pray for your finances you
probably like what would you be praying
for if you had one week you wouldn't
just pray that your kids get along with
her friends at school what would you be
praying for you be praying with this
great intensity that your kids will go
to heaven you'll be praying for all your
friends that don't know God or that our
distant and you will be on your knees
and you will be weeping it is sad
oftentimes I know this church is
familiar with this and I had the very
similar situation as well but like when
someone gets a cancer so it's been about
eight years or so I had a brain tumor
and then they had a prayer meeting at
church and a girl who wasn't that close
to church she came to the prayer meeting
and she says I've never prayed like that
before and I said that's awesome but to
someone have to have a tragedy in order
for us to pray with intense urgency it
shouldn't have to be that way I don't
want you to pray just to pray I want you
to pray to connect I mean that's why
we're praying right because if Christ is
coming back in a week or if i'm going to
him i definitely want to be connected to
him before i get there
I would be on my knees repenting do you
know the story of st. by isa i love this
ain't she was born to Christian parents
very wealthy and they died while she was
young they left her all their money and
she was a wonderful godly girl and she
donated to the poor left and right she
donated so much and she never thought a
way of increasing the money she donated
until she had nothing left will her
friends said well we need to find a way
for you to make money and they kind of
influenced her in the wrong way she
ended up opening a brothel she was
running a house for those cutting people
when the monks heard about it they were
so worried and they went and sent st.
John the short to go talk to her so he
went to the brothel he met her and then
he asked her question says what is it
that Jesus did to you that you're so
upset about that you left him and then
he began to cry and he's she said why
are you crying this is because I could
see devil has taken over your heart and
I see him playing around your face and
she says is the path of return still
open for me he says absolutely she said
take me so that night he was going to
take her to another place they went
through the wilderness and so they had
to rest that night so they slept in
different areas she over there he over
here and while he was praying he saw a
light from heaven and then her body was
taken I sorry her soul was taken he said
God why did this happen she was just
beginning to pray she was just beginning
to repent and then he heard a voice that
said her repentance was perfect and so I
took her I mean she must have prayed
with such urgency like the best player
she's ever pray now I don't want this to
make you afraid of praying
your best prayer it might lead to more
good prayers God may not take you once
you pray it but when was the last time
you prayed with such urgency where your
heart was just pouring out because you
cared about all these people and you
definitely wanted to be straight with
god when was the last time I want you to
begin to pray urgently the next thing I
just read a book and it really opened my
mind and so I wanted to add this verse
here see then that you walk
circumspectly you know circumspectly
means like where you're looking exactly
where you're going says not as fool's
but wise redeeming the times because the
days are evil therefore do not be unwise
be understanding what what the will of
the Lord is redeeming the time it means
giving value to your time we've all been
granted a certain allotment of time I
don't know if you accept this but many
of you actually almost all of you
actually all of you have lived longer
than many others you've already had more
time than so many other people it's been
a gift for you so then how have you
scheduled your time you know we have
these apps on our phones and you can
sync your work calendar your home
calendar and they can all be 21 and then
you think oh well now I'm organized
because they have all counters one place
but there's still full of certain things
regardless of how you try to be
organized and then this book kind of
brought a few things to my mind and said
you know what is it that you put on your
calendar what is it you actually put in
your calendar well we make sure your
work meetings and your work appointments
are in there
you make sure all the birthday parties
and all the weddings and all the
anniversaries that you have to attend
you make sure of all the events you're
going to all your travels those go in
the calendar when was the last time you
put the word this word in your calendar
home I'm going to spend time with my
kids or my spouse when does that ever
make it into anyone's calendar very few
people do and most people think i'm
going to have family night father of the
year he spends one night a week with his
kids or a spouse which is awesome that's
less than fifteen percent of not your
time of your evenings less than fifty
percent of your evenings well how much
time do you think your kids should get
in a week if you have a desire for them
to be something amazing what if you
wrote in your schedule three and a half
four nights more than a half your
evenings you're going to put from five
to eight over four to seven when they
come home or whenever you're home I'm
going to dedicate no one can like if you
have a meeting at work no matter if
someone calls you sorry I'm busy I can't
move that meeting so sorry I'm busy I
can't move the time I have with my
family is like really important i'm
making an investment i read a story it's
i know if the real stories like a but it
proves the point there was a single
father who had a daughter and he didn't
really know how to raise her daughter he
wasn't super invested and she'd come and
talk to me to be reading his paper and
say why don't you watch TV and he say oh
you know dad will you play as means like
why don't you go and outside and play
their friends and she'd come again why
don't you and he'd say just go you know
talk to other people so she kept growing
and growing very distant from her father
till she got to her teenage years the
friends became her source of keeping her
busy and she got with the wrong group of
friends as you can imagine well she died
she went to heaven she's at the judgment
seat they saw that she's lived a
horrible horrible life and angels are
saying well what do we do for her and
the head angel says don't worry about
her she's good find me the one who
neglected her I need to talk to him and
you kind of wonder have we spent the
time where we need it the most how many
of you have put in your schedule light
in life meeting circled by church for
the three hours before it's in your
calendar and it's amazing calendars are
easy now you just put it in once and you
hit repeat forever and it just shows up
forever but we church is not always like
on our calendar an event that's at
church or prayer meeting I this we don't
put those on our calendar if we can if
we want to how many times do you put
prayer time on your calendar or is that
one of those things in your schedule
that can be moved around from the
morning to the evening to the next day
to the next week but if it's in your
schedule on your calendar so sorry this
time is given to God he brings out the
point as a book as the what if you gave
your calendar to God how do you think
God would rearrange your schedule do you
think he would say don't go to work he
would let you go to work but what else
would he do what if you began not only
to pray urgently to schedule
purposefully what if you took out your
calendars that you know what I
definitely need to put these prayer
times on my calendar I need to put these
times with my church and you put these
times with my family on my calendar put
your exercise times because if they're
not in your calendar they're not going
to happen some of you guys need to
change your life drastically
you're in a long career like oh how do I
get out of my career I don't have the
time look at your calendar if you did
one night a week in some course I've
heard of people their whole lives are
changed by putting one night a week
they're taking a masters and then they
get a whole new career that's fulfilling
God is going to say I gave you so much
time what did you put in your schedule
the next one is invest unswervingly
unswervingly is not in any English
Dictionary I made it up this morning
because it rise with fervently an
urgency but do not lay up for yourselves
treasures on earth where moth and rust
destroy and where thieves break in and
steal but lay up for yourselves
treasures in heaven where neither moth
nor rust destroy and where thieves do
not break in for where your treasure is
there your heart will be also God's
going to say I gave you time and I gave
you money on that day he's going to ask
you what did you do with it he's not
going to say I asked you to give me all
of it but I asked you to give me some of
it I mean as many of us are going to
have great excuses because I had to buy
a life insurance policy and a disability
insurance policy and I had to buy a 529
k and then a 401k they have all my
receipts for my 503 c and i really need
to make sure that all those were in
place so that was that was where i
invested in it's been my personal
experience I think one of the biggest
problems for Christians in America it's
not going to church it's giving their
money to God it's living not
uncomfortably because that would be
horrible for us to live uncomfortably
but to live less comfortably I know I
know you're going to like the tomatoes
are coming out right it would be so hard
for us what if where does this ten
percent come from in the New Testament
we have to give ten percent I can't find
it anywhere but when Christ talks about
giving he talks about the lady that gave
all when I read about the church in
Macedonia they gave above and beyond
their means they gave more than they
could they were begging st. Paul to take
stuff and they were being persecuted and
they were dying I invest in a lot of
things and I'm not saying don't invest
it actually is wise to invest but don't
invest all your money in earthly things
the things that I invest in an earthly
things drive me crazy I lose sleep at
night because the stock market changed
or the interest rates went up and the
real estate went down never once that I
give money to a needy person I couldn't
sleep that night actually that's the
best night of sleep I've had do you guys
know the story of st. Peter the poor st.
Peter the poor was rich initially and
there was a beggar that used to be by
his house and the beggar would bug him
he come home with all this bread and
like he's like give me just one piece of
bread and he didn't want him and finally
said here take a piece and he threw it
at him that night he had a dream
judgement day he was before God a big
scale two sides and the side for evil
works was like down through the floor
he's like oh this is not looking good he
realized he'd done all these things for
himself he spent all his money on
himself and then the angels are like is
there anything good he's in it can
anyone say anything for him then the
beggar shows up in the dream he comes he
takes the piece of bread that was thrown
at him and he puts it on the scale for a
good deed and the scale flips over and
then st. Peter saw that and he was
shocked he said that was what helped me
then he decides I'm no longer buying for
myself he started to give to the poor he
started to sell everything he had for
the poor and then he sold himself so
that he could give even that money to
the poor Christ said this parable make
for yourselves friends with unrighteous
Mammon like on that day those friends
you've made by giving your money to them
they will be at the gate saying Christ
when I was hungry that person did feed
me and when I was naked they actually
did give me clothes and they actually
did give me a drink and it was them that
when I lost my house or when this
happened I lost my job like that's have
you ever heard the book unfinished by
Richard Stearns he's the president World
Vision he tells this awesome story and
when i tell it like it breaks my heart
he gives a story of these people that
gets stranded on an island ten guys are
on an island and one guy starts to pray
and all of a sudden he's on the island
and like this basket full of everything
he needs a pack of mms something to
start fire a water purifier a korea
coffee meat like everything he needs
he's like thank you Lord for sending me
this and then he used it for himself
well the other nine are starving as if
he thought that God sent him something
that it was going to be just for him
like God sends him things to spend it
just on himself you say how ridiculous
of course he would share it with all the
others how ridiculous is it for us to
not share with all the others just
because God sent the basket to you
doesn't mean that they didn't pray as
well and then God send it to you to give
to them what if you invested heavenly we
invest earthly all the time what have
you invested heavenly so that when that
time comes you have all those friends
saying please let this person in
they've done so much for me so I want
you to pray urgently I want you to
schedule purposefully I want you to
invest heavenly and then I want you to
love fervently this is right after the
verse where he says the end of all
things is at hands pray and then he says
and above all things everything and if
times at hand above all things have
fervent love for one another for love
will cover a multitude of sins notice
how he didn't say just have love says
have fervent love yesterday the funeral
which I just found this out yesterday
that the funeral for women the gospel
they read is where the woman washes
Christ's feet before his burial that's
an awesome gospel like she offered cuz I
know what Christ said to the other lady
that washed his feet you know the center
of the adulterous woman said because she
was forgiven much loved much you know
how people say you should always choose
a life verse like go look in the Bible
and find a verse that like inspires you
and this is like your your core verse
for your for your life I don't have a
verse but one of my favorite verses as
when Christ said she loved much see this
is when you start thinking about your
funeral what are people gonna say he was
nice and his hair looked great and I
just want to bring that in because I
don't have great hair today because I
stated a bonus house he does not have
gel or shaving cream so that's my excuse
that's why it's like this but people
will not come to your funeral talking
about that you dressed nicely or that
your house was nice or that your car was
nice or that you worked hard at your job
they might even skip your funeral day
except for this one thing they'll say
that person touched my life in a way I
will never be the same I am better
because I have known that person that
person loved me that's not have a coffee
with someone kind of love that's not
like someone's obnoxious selfie on
Facebook kind of love that is you've
invested yourself in someone they're the
kind of person that when you need
something you can't wait to call them
but the problem is they always call you
first they just happen to know they just
happened to be there you know how people
when there's like a funeral and people
visit you the first day but then there's
the person when everyone else leaves
they come the second day and the third
day the person that thinks of others
before themselves like when Christ was
going to die and he wanted to leave an
impression his end time was coming what
did he do in John 13 it says this he
loved his own who are in the world and
he loved them to the end and then he
washed their feet and he says to his
disciples now go and love others as I
have loved you wouldn't it be amazing
not to know people who have loved you
but to be the person that when they walk
in the room you cannot wait to hug them
like this person is precious to you
because they have made you feel precious
to them so I was thinking about this
Christ did it through service and
washing the feet of another I thought
how am I going to make this work with
all that i read in that book and I said
you know what I should probably schedule
purposefully a time for loving others of
thinking of others
first so i mean i just read this book on
the plane so i haven't done this yet but
now I'm thinking thursday nights it's a
time where i'm going to have to think
about all the people i know who could i
call who could i reach out to who could
i pray especially for who could i send
that text to that will lift them up i
don't know if they need it but I feel
like God is telling me to send it that I
will be that person or they say or you
would be the person where everyone says
I'm going to miss them because they love
me so much I'm almost done if you guys
prayed urgently from now on do it for
the next two weeks the end of the Coptic
year is two weeks pray urgently for the
next two weeks really write something in
your calendar and schedule it
purposefully so that your scheduling of
who you want to become start thinking
about where your money has gone and do
you have an investment in heaven and
then think who could I love right now
who are the people that are really close
to me that I want them to know that I
love them to death and then probably the
most important thing I need you to do is
act immediately if you wait you will
find yourself in the same situation that
you were in at this time last year and
at the last retreat and at the last holy
week and at the last sermon that you
said i am going to but you never did
look at this verse that st. paul writes
he says therefore we make it our aim
like this is his life purpose whether
present or absent to be well pleasing to
him for we must all appear before the
judgment seat of Christ this is st. Paul
who and later in this book he says I was
whipped I was beaten I was stoned I was
shipwrecked I was I did everything for
crisises but that we might receive the
things done in the body to what he has
done whether
good or bad I'm he's like that's it I
know I'm gonna be there my end time is
going to come what is your life verse
what is it that you want to become God
gave you time he gave you money he gave
you the opportunity to pray and he gave
you a heart to love I pray that you be
the people that God wants you to be may
God bless this group now and always and
forever amen