This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
February 26/27 2011 Saturday/Sunday
BUILDING SOLID LIVES
TEXT: Ephesians 4:15, 16 I. REVIEW A. Building = Identity (Solid lives are built on the foundation of Biblical identity: Who God is and Who God says I am.) B. Solid = Maturity (Solid lives are always growing. Solid lives have a Biblical plan for spiritual formation.) C. Lives = Community (Solid lives are growing together in transparent relationships…learning to do life together.) II. THE CHRISTIAN LIFE WAS MEANT TO BE LIVED TOGETHER And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved. (Acts 2:42–47 ESV) ← ← A. This radical community was part of the overflow effect of the new capacity they had to live in the Spirit after the Holy Spirit was poured out. ← B. What community adds: ← 1. ← ← ← ← 1 Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. (Galatians 6: 2 ESV) Support in burdensome times.
Encouragement to do good works.
← And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. (Hebrews 10:24–25 ESV) ← ← And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes… (Acts 2:46 ESV) ← ← ← …from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love. (Ephesians 4:16 ESV) ← ← III. THREE INGREDIENTS FOR SOLID COMMUNITY And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ… (Ephesians 4:11–14 ESV) ← ← A. God’s blueprint for us to live in community: ← ← 1. Speaking: Verbal Communication ← 2. ← 3. Truth: Honest words Love: Compassion 3. Strength to grow into God’s destiny for your life.
← 4. In almost any circle of relationships, people will be better in two of the three characteristics of Solid Community. B. Three different people…those who: 1. Speak + Truth - Love = Criticism a. Excuses: “I’m just honest” or “I care more about being right than making a difference in your life”.
b. Instead, try making sure your heart is in the right place before you open your mouth. If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. (1 Corinthians 13:1 ESV) 2. Speak + Love - Truth = License a. Excuses: “I don’t want to hurt anybody’s feelings” or “I’m not good at confrontation”. b. Instead, remember that love is many things…but it is not silent. Faithful are the wounds of a friend; profuse are the kisses of an enemy. (Proverbs 27:6 ESV) 3. Truth + Love - Speaking = Silence a. Excuses: “I don’t have time” or “I’m not good with words”. b. Instead, don’t leave people to guess what you are thinking. ← Everyone enjoys a fitting reply; it is wonderful to say the right thing at the right time! (Proverbs 15:23 NLT) ← ← ← III. CONCLUSION
A. First: Examine your existing relationships for strengths and weaknesses. ← 1. Ask you spouse or children how you are doing in each of the areas.
B. Second: Do you have intentional community beyond the people with whom you live? 1. Things to look for: authenticity, the Word, spiritual conversation. C. Third: Cultivate intentional community. D. Speaking + Truth + Love = Life-giving relationships that build life-giving community. ←