In Ephesians 6 Paul calls us to spiritual battle, and over the next 10 weeks we will be doing a series of case studies in spiritual warfare.
Using the 7 deadly sins as a framework, we will look at 7 of Satan’s primary strategies for attacking us.
In this sermon Gray Keller helps us battle greed. He surveys the mass of biblical examples of greed and then compares and contrasts the rich young ruler with Zacchaeus from Luke 18 and 19.
Here is the outline for the upcoming weeks:
for the anthem of the sin. And, uh, I had every intention of getting a song this week, but just never you get it. I didn't make it slow. We do have a phone, but we'll get to it in just a second. And if you have your Bibles, you interned with me to Joshua.
We're gonna be in Joshua, Chapter 14 And look at the case of Caleb. So Caleb is gonna be our case. Study as someone who conquers and his victorious over sloth. But, well, let me set up the song. So this comes from the unofficial history of grunge.
If you want to add a book to your reading list Grunge music. Uh, Kurt and curtain Kathleen were holed up in the woods of Olympia, Washington. Catholic Kathleen was a singer songwriter of the influential quote influential feminist riot girl punk band named Bikini Kill.
And they were sharing a bottle of Canadian club whiskey with the goal on this fateful October night in 1990 their goal is to deface a new teen pregnancy center, which Hanna described as quote a right wing con where they get teenage girls to go in there and then they told them that they're going to go to hell if they have abortions.
And after doing some re con her and Kurt, Kurt was on the lookout. So Hannah ran up in the middle of night and took spray paint and graffitied fake abortion clinic everyone and then ran. Back. Then it was Kurt's turn, and then he ran up and in giant six foot letters, spray painted God is gay on the front door.
Then the two spent the rest of their evening celebrating their victory of social protest, and they ended up at Kurt's house, where Hannah went around in a joyful triumphs, smashed things all throughout the house.
Sure, his mother loved that, and then she took out a Sharpie and wrote in giant letters on his bedroom wall. Kurt smells like teen spirit. Then they both passed out. Then he woke up in the morning. It was like an epiphany from the Lord.
The line Kurt smells like teen spirit, and that was the inspiration for this song. So hit it, Eli. Yeah, no. And all of you grew up in then in the early nineties, were instantly taken back, and that song is interesting from Nirvana.
Smells like Teen Spirit has actually called by one British research group Uh, the most iconic song of all time that that it embodies the mood of an entire generation better than any song ever written.
Which is a pretty staggering, bold claim. But do you think about that anthem is the anthem of a generation. It's the anthem of those who are cosmically board you here. When the lights out, it's less dangerous.
Here we are now entertain us. Come on. What are you gonna do here? We are entertained. Me, I feel stupid. I feel contagious. But here we are. Entertain us and I forget And I forget just why I taste Oh, yeah, I guess it makes me smile.
See, There's things that are supposed to taste and they're supposed to be good people Tell me these things are good but I'm so numb I don't even taste them. I find it hard. It's hard to find a well, whatever.
Never mind. Hello. Hello. Hello. Hello. Hello. Hello. Hello. And this whole anthem of a generation is here I am now Entertain me. Feed me. I'm bored. Whatever. And what's interesting is that was that those were the grunge kids.
So this this that was the anthem when I was in high school. So that instantly takes me back to ninth grade. And you know, you have the grunge kids over here who were, you know, singing that song. And then you had, like, the prep re legally blonde cheerleaders over here.
And this was Do you remember when the girls would go like whatever and you do that? That was cool the same time. What's what's interesting is they're actually suffering from the same disease, even though they're not hanging out at all in the lunchroom.
They're pointing fingers at one another. That actually articulates. It was better than any song I know the anthem of sloth. What sloth really is now, this week has been fascinating kind of studying for sloth because I originally set this Siri's up, thinking we get to the 77 deadly sins Reitzle off.
That's laziness. We're not really in the area where people really going to struggle with that so we can kind of move on. I thought, Well, of course, our case study will be the slugger in proverbs because there's a character in Proverbs is the slugger, and he just needs some motivation.
He's kind of a tragic comic figure who just needs some kind of up to his life. And then the Maur. This week I started wrestling and studying with it. That's not it at all. It's actually much worse, and we can imagine it's a lot more pervasive than I'd ever thought in the desert.
Fathers were some of the wisest pastoral counselors who would help people wrestle and fight their own sin. They would clump sloth, lust and gluttony altogether, and they would say that less than Glitnir sins of the flesh they're easy to destroy.
But sloth can slowly seep into your soul. Enough infected. So we need to first think I sloth. Let's get our mind around it. What it is not. It's not just laziness. It is not laziness. There's this this little delightful little Siris on the seven deadly sins that Oxford University Press put out a little bit.
E books and escort help may have been reading each one, and one for this week is on sloth. Uh, Wendy Wasserstein wrote it, and it's interesting is one thing she writes in this book is, uh, it's actually a parody self help manual on how you can get more sloth into your life.
Because, he says, far from being a deadly sin, it is one of the world's most amiable. Weakness is, most of the world's problems come from people who are too busy. We actually need more sloth in our life.
So most people look at that sloth and say, Well, it's just I So maybe you're not very motivated and just binge watch Netflix. What's the big deal? And actually, when you start looking at what it is, what it causes, how deep it is, you see, it actually is worse.
Another book is a little more helpful is from R. J. Snell, whose philosophy professor at Eastern University wrote a book called A CD A and Its Discontents. So the original Greek word for sloth is a CD a ah, not CD a care.
It's someone who does not care, and here this is kind of long, but hang on, it's worth it, he says. Sloth is not laziness, although the term in time does come to mean in activity. Rather, it reveals a frustration.
Ah, hate, a disgust at place and life itself Sienna. See, Dia has some of the monks who first really wrestled with understanding these things. The monk abhors what God has given, namely the reality and the limits of his life, especially the limits on one's own self hood.
See a CD is a profound withdrawal into self, where action for others is no longer perceived as a gift of oneself as the response to a prior loving act that love calls forth. It's seen instead as an uninhibited seeking of personal satisfaction in the fear of losing something.
The desire to save one's freedom at any price in reality is a deeper enslavement to self. So sloth is the desire that I'm gonna maintain my freedom at all costs. So there's no longer any room for the abandonment of self to the other, for the joy of the gift.
And what remains in the soul is sadness and bitterness, because one has distanced himself from the community who, being separated from others, find themselves also separated from God. It's a mistake to think that sloth is laziness.
The sloth ful might very well be very busy doing things. It's a frenzy of pointless action. Now this now that in their disgust and the actual work God has put before them. Much more than indolent Sloth rejects the burden of order, choosing instead the breezy lightness of freedom loving self.
More than others, autonomy more than good in sloth, one rejects the weight of living in loving relationships. So all these symptoms, you want things, all of the sins. What God tells Cane and Genesis Chapter four is that sin is lurking outside your door.
Waiting and sloth is one of the things that is looming is lurking. It's waiting. So how do you know so to kind of keep the nineties theme in In honor of the nineties, we'll do another kind of riff. There was a famous Southern comedian in the nineties who had a famous little line called You Might Be a Redneck.
If so, Jeff Foxworthy, you know you might be a redneck if somebody has to see your I D. And you show him your belt buckle. You might be a redneck if somebody comes to your house mistakenly thinking you're having a yard sale.
Um, let's say you might be sloth ful. If so, if you struggle and you know it with the fear of missing out With Foma, you might be a sloth if your energy and joy for your spouses less today than it was when you married.
You might be a flaw if you're like when somebody asks you how you're doing and your responses. I'm so busy. Life is so busy you might be asl off if you struggle on Monday afternoon at two o'clock sitting in your office and you start to J dream about anywhere but here, I would rather be anywhere but right here you might be a sloth struggle with apathy.
Struggle with motivation. Struggle with procrastination. You might miss law what Steven Press Field calls from people in creative field because the war of Art, where you have to sit down and you have to do your work and you start feeling that resistance and so you'll do anything, expect what you're supposed to do in the moment you'll rearrange your closet.
You'll shine your shoes. You'll wash your car anything but what you're supposed to be doing in the moment. You might be a sloth, so if you're easily distracted and easily discouraged, you could struggle with slaw.
If you're constantly checking your phone or checking out, you might struggle with slaw. What press field he gives the image from a kind of unknown? Never. I'd never heard of it before. Ah, novel from Ah, writer that came out of Czech Republic in 1984 he says.
There's two characters in this book that perfectly embody slaw Ste effect on us. When and it's Ah, the name of the book is the unbearable lightness of being. There's two characters, one is Thomas and wanna Sabina.
And so Thomas is kind of your, you know, your type, a go getter who loves work. And he's a womanizer and has all these conquests. And he has this conquest of one woman. One night has this kind of country bumpkin who doesn't really know the ways of the world.
And so, after their escapades, she doesn't know she's supposed to leave and she stays. She tries to hold his hand, gonna lay on his shoulder, and then he starts to have a panic attack because he can't handle.
It's the unbearable weight that the responsibility is now coming on him and he panics. He can't take it. There's something that's now being asked of him and require. And this is the sentence where he cooked comes up.
Sabina's life was so haunting. So listen, the heavier the burden, the closer our lives come to the Earth, the more real and truthful they become. But conversely, the absence the absolute absence of burdens can cause man to be lighter than air, to soar into the heights, to take leave of the earth and his earthly being and become.
But you become only half real. Your movements are free, but they're totally insignificant. What then, shall we choose? Shall we choose wait or lightness when we want to give expression to some dramatic situation in our lives? We tend to use metaphors of heaviness.
We say that something has become a great burden to us. We either bear the burden or fail and go down with it. But we struggled. Win or lose if it ends Sabina, what had come of her? Nothing. She had left a man because she felt like leaving him.
Had he persecuted her Had he tried to take revenge on her? No, Her drama was a drama not of heaviness, but of lightness. What fell to her lot was not the burden but the unbearable lightness of being. And so in the novel, for both of them, they relentlessly pursue their own freedom to the extent that in the end they're utterly ruthless and they're aimless and they're pointless.
And they die loveless because he refused to allow the weight of responsibility to be placed on them. So tt the smells like teen spirit. It's an anthem of oven entire age because it articulates that refusal to bear the burdens of loving relationships.
Two things we think how to slaughter manifest itself. It can mend itself in just in apathy of the heart. So you have a despairing resignation. So you checked out, you've given up. There's a sense that, just like in the song, all my sense of taste is gone.
I can't taste, I can't smell. I'm just stuck, I'm not alive. I'm a drone, I'm a zombie. And what it'll cause it's something is one of the reasons. Like teenage girls have cut themselves because they want to know, at least for 30 seconds.
While I'm bleeding, I'm alive and a sloth eating away. It's muddy, so another way it can affect you is from not apathy, but avoid apps where you just desperately pursue one escape after another and you and avoid.
And your mantra is I hear we are entertain us, Divert us, distract us, always clicking, always checking never at rest, never silent, never at peace. A sloth and one of the reasons why it's so bad. The second point is what they would say is the wear sloth is going to attack you isn't going to attack you at the very core of who you are.
It will attack you causes trying to slowly seep the life out of your closest relationships. And you're actually called your calling your vocation The reason why you're alive. So what sloth is is refusing the daily drudgery and discipline that love requires and CP seeking escapes.
And so it could be fueled by fear. So fear of missing out fear being tied down, fear of doing the wrong thing the wrong way, or it could be fueled by neglect. But either way, it's slowly tries to steal the things most precious to us.
So that's what it is. So when you see that you think well, sloth is not just a kind of funny, bumbling thing, this is actually deathly serious because it's what's wants to slowly drain my life of life.
So where do you go to find help? We wanted to look in this whole series. Do case studies of people who either fell to the sin or overcame it. And actually, this week I had somewhat of ah, might. One was about a crisis, not a crisis.
I didn't know where to go because I initially thought I were going to do the character in Proverbs a slugger. But this is not it. This doesn't really get at what sloth really is. And so, even at the men's Bible study on Thursday, I don't know where to go and what was so fascinating.
It was actually in the midst of struggling with sloth that I saw a ray of light to help us how we can get out of it. And I was having my own Bible reading and in my own Bible reading. I was in Joshua, a section from Joshua 13 all the way to the end in 21 you kind of get to the section and Joshua and kind of the energy and the action starts toe lag a little bit.
So the first part of the book is pretty energetic. You have the one of the key words is passing over. So they're coming out of the wilderness and they're crossing over into the promised land and they're going to go.
And then the second major section is the battles. They're coming in and they're gonna take it. That's the key. One of the key lines as they take. And so you're the battle of Jericho than A II. The fall and then they rise and they take it and they start moving.
And then you hit kind of this. This lull in Chapter 13 all the way to 20 where's just kind of one almost endless cycle of place names? Here's so on. So the lot fell to them. They went here. Here's the boundary hears these half a dozen towns that you've never heard of, and so it could be pretty, not monotonous, this relentless names and places.
It could be a cure for insomnia. And as I was saying there Thursday, just kind of reading and dozing off and not really paying attention. All of a sudden, it's like the spirit lives that wake up. You're actually failing in the very thing you're thinking about how to fight and look, look, Open up your eyes.
Where are you? And actually, in this section from 13 to 19 we have a tremendous demonstration of what it means to be faithful, to fight all the way to the end into battle sloth. And you have an illustration of what means to fall to it.
The slow, steady draining. So let's kind of set up this section in verse, Chapter 13. You can look back and here's our actually Chapter 12. You can see the whole litany of all of Joshua's great accomplishments.
They defeated this king and this king and this king. So they've come in and they've taken the land. So the great victory has been won. Now they have the hard work of settling in and possessing it. So it's kind of like the idea of, you know, when you've moved, you moved to a new home in the 1st 4 days.
Were this explosion of activity and you move 90% of your things in those four days. Then how much time does it take to finish the final 10%? Eight years, seven years later. You still have boxes that you don't even notice.
They're there until company comes over here like Oh, yeah, we actually haven't, um that fan. And why does it take so long to actually finish? Because we're all so awful. And this is the story in macro of in Joshua.
They come into the land, they've taken it. Now they have to finish the job, and it sets him in Chapter 13. It says now Joshua was old in advanced in years, and the Lord said to him, You're old advanced years, but there remains yet much land with this.
You're not done. You made a good start, but you're not finished. And then this look is what we have. This kind of this case study of comparing Caleb and the seven tribes to the north. And so the seven tribes of the north they get to their land and then chapter 17 there They complain about the allotment.
They said, Look, we're Joseph. It was probably Joseph F. Freemen. Manasseh were Joseph where the most numerous tribe You're giving us this? We want the hill country we want the forest to doesn't find Go! Cut it down.
You have to do the work. This is the gift now. You have to. I have to do the work of settling. They feel entitled. They're complaining and they have no energy. It says they were slack in obeying the Lord's commands.
One things you see is actually, uh, in complete obedience is disobedience. They're not finishing, but in here Caleb is a case study in finishing. So let's follow along. And there's a couple things I think we can learn about how we can be faithful in every age in every stage of life.
So it's pick up in verse, Chapter 14 starting over six. Then the people of Judah came to Joshua, Gilgo and Caleb. Now I tried all morning to pronounce his his name and out of respect of the family, to not butcher it will.
Just so you see his family's name there. You know what the Lord said to Moses, the man of God and cadets, Barnea, concerning you and me. I was 40 years old, and Moses, the servant lord, sent me from cadets to spy out the land.
And I brought him word again as it was in my heart. But my brothers, who went up with me made the heart of this people melt. Yet I wholly followed the Lord my God. And Moses swore on that day saying surely the land on which your foot has tried and shall be an inheritance for you and your Children forever because you have holy followed the Lord my God.
And now behold the Lord has kept me alive. Just a Z said these 45 years since that time The Lord spoke this word to Moses while Israel walked in the wilderness and B and behold, Now I am this day 85 years old and I'm still a strong today as I was in the day that Moses sent me.
My strength now is as my strength was then for war and for going and for coming. So now give me this hill country of which the Lord spoke on that day when that day with 45 years ago Give it to me for you heard on that day how the Anna came were there and with great fortified cities.
And it may be that the Lord will be with me and I shall drive them out, just as the Lord said Joshua blessed him and he gave Hebron to Caleb and therefore he burn became the inheritance of Gala. And to this day, because he wholly followed the Lord the God of Israel.
And then it says now, this was cure with a robot. An air by was the greatest man among the and Akeem. But he was driven out and the land was at rest from war. So here in Caleb, you see this remarkable demonstration of what it means to be faithful all the way to then to fight the good fight to finish the race.
So a couple things I want you to see is one that faithfulness to the end can be. It will be lonely and it can seem crazy. And that faithfulness to the end is fueled by promises and energized by the present.
So this thing about those two things first it can be lonely and will seem crazy. Lovely says, look at verse eight. But my brothers who went up with me made the heart of the people melt. Yet I wholly followed the Lord My God, the only two people in the entire company, probably two million that wanted to go forward with Joshua and Caleb.
Interesting enough. They're the only two people of the entire nation that get to choose their inheritance, choose where they're going to settle. They're the only two people to be faithful at times can be very lonely.
In fact, often the battle of faithfulness will be. Will you be faithful, even win your lonely? Will you be faithful when nobody's watching? Will you be faithful in the mundane we call spiritual integrity.
Much of the spiritual life happens when your alone. What do you do when nobody's watching one thing's Jesus repeats over and over. Don't practice your righteousness to be seen by others. Don't just give to the poor to be seen by them.
Don't just pray to be seen by them. Don't fast so people impressed by your spiritual devotion. You don't do these things for the attention. So just think about your own life. What sloth wants to creep into our hearts to numb us so that we're on Lee actually motivated when eyes are on us.
So what things in your life are you most motivated to do because you know people are watching, We need attention. Need encouragement. How can you be faithful even when no one's watching. But what's so interesting here is noticed.
Caleb has to suffer. He has to wait 45 years because off the sins of his people, he suffers because of other people's sins. Can you imagine? For 40 years he's wandering in the wilderness? How many times do you think he laid in his mat on the ground, in his tent at night, thinking I should not be here right now? Why am I here? I should already be in my bed that I've created in the land of the Lord has given us.
Why am I here? He had to suffer because of the sins of others. But then faithfulness. It can be lonely. It can cause you to suffer for the sins of others. But the faithfulness can seem crazy. I love the energy of Caleb.
Do you notice? In verse 12 Caleb and Joshua, the only ones who get to pick the land. Did you notice what land Caleb picks? He picks the fortified cities where the Anna came. Were Do you remember the original reason why the Israel lights were too scared to go into the land because of the fortified cities where the Anakin were.
They were scared of them. And so here he is, 45 years like he hasn't gotten any younger. He claims he's still just a strong maybe, but he is then going to take the actual land that everybody else was afraid off.
They probably looked at it. Are you crazy? What do you do it? You want to go there? Look, sit down. Let somebody let some of these young kids go up and do the job. And what's so interesting? His vigor and his energy is fueled by the impossibility of what he's going to do.
And one of the things really to think about is maybe you struggle with sloth because you're not trying to do anything that requires supernatural help. One of the things is will struggle with sloth as long as we just stand in the world and look at it like consumers.
So here I am, entertained me, feed me, distract me. See here, Caleb, he's going to try and do something that if God doesn't fight for him, he's going to fail. And it's where thing is there anything in your life that you're trying to do that if God doesn't show up, it's gonna fail.
And what dream are you dreaming for yourself? For your kids? Do you want something for your kids? That if God doesn't do it, is going to fail or you just want something that anybody can do that doesn't be fine, well behaved, good, productive citizens of the community.
What do we actually want for them? He wants something bigger. There's a I I doubt this is true. This is one of the stories you know, preacher stories and business stories. They're they're all who knows where they come from.
This is a business story. And there's a business story about a American shoe manufacturer in the forties who are sending people wanted to send, uh, reps in China to start their, uh, their, you know, selling shoes to the Chinese.
And the story goes that one of their first sales rep went in and he cabled back home. You have to bring me back No one here where she is. And then they sent another person and and, of course, he cabled back.
We have to build another factory, nobody here where she is. I don't know if it's true or not, but you get the point how he's looking at what's the opportunity before us? Caleb is looking for this opportunity.
Impossible. Awesome. If God doesn't show up, then we fail. That's what faithfulness. Sometimes it can seem crazy. But then faithfulness is fueled by the promises, and it's energized by the present faithfulness Look noticed.
I was fueled by the promises. I love it because five times he has this anthem here, the Lord said. The Lord said, You know, in Verse six what the Lord said to Moses, You heard what the Lord said to me.
You heard what he said to Moses in Verse 10. You heard what the Lord said. Perhaps the Lord will be with me and drive them out, just as he said his faith. It may seem crazy, but it's not because faith in a leap into the dark is a leap into the light.
He's leaping into the light of God's word and God's promises, and he says, I know who he is. I know what he said, and I've trusted in him to come through. He's believing in the promise is it's acting on his word.
That's what faith does it takes God's promises. It turns them into prayers. And then it pleads them back to energize our action. And so faith clings to what he says. So maybe one thing you battle sloth in your own heart is you need to know more of his word.
I need to know more of his promises. What has the Lord said? See the promises of God or to be stimulants for our actions, not sedatives to put us to sleep. They're just stimulate you. This is this is spiritually coffee to get us up and get us moving.
And then the last thing noticed faithfulness is energized by the present. I love this. This presentation, his his conception of himself looking 1st 10 and now behold, The Lord has kept me alive. Justus, he said, This is why I'm alive.
If I'm alive is because he has something for me to do. And this right now, right here is it? And these 45 years since the time that the Lord said this word to me while Moses walked in the wilderness. Behold, Now I'm this day 85 years old and I'm still a strong today as I was in the day when Moses sent me my strength.
My stamina. Yeah, I love that energy says, Look, I spent the last 45 years walking through war and the wilderness. I was made for this. You tell me. Step down and let one of these young kids come doing nothing.
This is why I'm here. This is why I am made. I have the strength, and I have the stamina. And he's energized by what's placed before him. In that moment, it was so fascinating. Is Kayla recognize? This is my life's work.
This is why I'm here. That's why I've been created to take this for my family. He was fascinating. I mean, maybe if you never found you know what your life's work is. Maybe you just haven't gotten there yet.
Caleb got when he was 85. Maybe it takes time. It takes progressions, but notice he had to be faithful, You know, he couldn't. He couldn't still be strong and have the strength and stamina if he spent all 40 years in the wilderness getting drug around on a mat.
Yeah. He had to keep up his stamina. He had to keep up his strength. There was things he did every day so he could say that and it would be true. So think about your own heart. What's your What's your life's work? Maybe you won't know it yet, but in every location there's a lesson for you in every place where you are.
There's something that God wants you to learn. There's something I want you to know. There's a certain way he wants you to grow. And so here with Caleb, you just see this remarkable image, an illustration of someone who is faithful all the way till the end.
You called my good friend and Claremont Caleb Brazier. We we planned it together and that and tonight I'm preaching on your namesake. Tomorrow, he says. Good. He's the most underrated character in the whole Bible.
Hey, love never gets the love he deserves and said, Don't you want to be like this? Someone who, to the end of his days is eager, energetic, faithful fighting, finishing the race, fighting the good fight.
Where do you get the strength to make war on the sloth that will seep into your soul? It's sloth, if you think about it, is cosmic boredom. There's a board is bored with the world and you think about it.
Boredom is a judgment. Boredom is an act of judgment. You're sitting on the throne of the cosmos, and you're rendering judgment on it that it is not worthy of your energy of your time, of your attention.
When you're bored around people, you're judging them. You're judging them not to be worthy of your attention or not to be worthy of your sacrifice. But, you know, salvation is also an act of judgment.
The way we get the strength to overcome sloth as we have to look too another one greater than Caleb. Salvation is also a judgment. But when Jesus came, he delivers the verdict of not cosmic dis value.
You are not worthy, but of cosmic value. You are worthy. You are worthy of my attention. You are worthy of my affection. You are worthy of my ultimate sacrifice. See, when we look to the cross, we look and we see one who had a work to do, and the work was redemption.
And he took it all the way to completion even though it was lonely, even though it was hard. Even though he was suffering for the sins of others. He took it, and when he cries out on the cross, it is finished.
That is a cosmic declaration that the seas of sloth have been cut. And all of us who suffer with that confined life in him sie on the cross sloth is a refusal toe bear, the weight that love requires. And on the cross you have the ultimate demonstration of him bearing the weight that redemption required.
He endured the crushing burden with joy because he loved us enough to finish the work the father gave him. And so we follow in the footsteps of one who is faithful to the very end. So ending here, just a couple of practical things.
How can you work this into your life? Because it's on the cross that Jesus redeems us, and there's by the Holy Spirit that he makes us new. So every person in this room who struggles with distraction, who struggles with, um, lack of focus.
It's the Holy Spirit that can make us new because all Christian living, in essence, is is giving of yourself. It's sacrificial suffering, so anything that matters is just going to take daily toil daily, nurturing, daily effort and daily practice.
One. The troubles. Those that was sloth. There's no easy remedy. It's not like there's not a Mary Poppins fix or C just clap your hands and waiver wand and look. The whole house is now clean and tidy.
It takes work slow, steady, daily, deliberate work and one of the things that can help you with things I've been thinking a lot about lately is you need the stability of place. Sloth is refusal to allow the weights of place to put on you, but one of things you need to see a couple things to see the beauty of the boundaries.
First, the Lord has laid boundaries for you, and you don't need to see those restrictions to your freedom, keeping you bound between you. See those gifts noticing Chapter 15. I won't read them all, but what struck me and Chapter 15 in the 1st 12 versus 19 times, he says.
This is the boundary. This is the boundary of Adam. This is the boundary of the South Sea. This is the boundary on the south. Here's the east boundary. Here's the boundary on the north. Here's the boundary that goes here.
Here's a boundary here. Here's the boundary here 19 times. This is your boundary and once you begin to see is the beauty of the boundaries that the Lord has placed you in a certain position around certain people in a certain place because he wants you to grow and thrive there.
So you see the beauty. You know, one of the things that makes this boring to us is because there's this relentless role of place, Names says. We don't know any of the places We don't know any of the people.
But every single one of those is a declaration that God is faithful to his promises because he promised Abraham in Genesis Chapter 12 that of your descendants will be as numerous as the stars in the sky, and I'm gonna give them this land and every single place.
Name is a place where he's placing his people is that I want my people here. I will have people in cadets, Barnea, who will pray to me and praise me. I will have people here, and every single one of those place names with boundaries is is a place that the Lord wants his people.
So how can you develop faithfulness? One question and that I've been thinking over and over is trying to fight sloth. And my own life is what does it look like to be faithful in this place with these people? What his faithfulness look right now, in this place with these people, God has put you in this place.
One things We joke, cause Cynthia's from Orlando, and she's one of, like, four of you. Like and there's room. There's two of you who, actually from here. Everybody else is transient. So thank you for letting us come in.
And, you know, we come here on vacation. We like it, We don't leave. And so you might be thinking why? I'm transient. This is not my home. I'm passing through. I'm going from here to the next stop right now.
The Lord has you placed. Why are you here? Be here. One of the greatest trouble struggles in our modern age is to be present where were present. So the question is what does the war? Why am I here? Why does he have me in this house on this street? Going to this office with these neighbors? Why am I here? I think for the life of our church, we'll talk about the Met with their members made in one.
The most important questions we have is why are we here? What does the Lord have for us to do in this place? Why are we in this place? Means we're thinking about I mean, think about why am I in my office? Why my job? So some of you know why is it that you know right now, the largest employer in this town is a mission's agency.
What does the Lord want for a community that's built up where the largest employers are missionaries? But what does the Lord want for this town? It might be something extraordinary. Maybe we need the Lord to have give us a bigger gaze of what he wants us to do here.
And why are you on your street? The Lord has ordained those times and seasons is not so. You can hide in your home away from people. Why are you here? And why would these people you know? You heard those saying family.
Everybody's got one. Why? Why did the Lord place me in this family? What is it. I'm supposed to be a means off to mediate. Grace, why am I here? This family, this street, these neighbors, these co workers, these soccer teammates see if smells like Teen Spirit is an anthem for our age, I think the great song of counterpoint of singing the song where we love Maybe Mister Rogers Theme song is the great counterpoint We're gonna love our neighborhood.
I love the place where we are in the here and now. So let's pray and ask him to help this to be so Lord, we thank you for your word. We thank you for the the power of your son on the cross who redeems us.
We confessed to you the subtle way sin conceit pinto our hearts and it can infect so many different things. So we ask that you help us. We ask that you help us to truly find freedom not by sloughing off the weight of responsibility but by joyfully embracing them in the power of your son and your spirit.
So I pray for anyone here who they know they're just distracted in life there. So divided and so distracted. Give them the strength and courage to focus on the things that are most important normally pray for anyone for marriages in this room who they've experienced the slow, steady, seeping away of life and energy in love.
We pray we thank you that in the power of the cross from the Gospel we can stop it and we can reverse the effects of the curse. Pray for anyone here this morning. They're struggling with their work and their calling.
And I don't know why I'm here. What is the Lord want from me? Give them a sense of why you've placed them here. What you're calling them to do how they can contribute to your kingdom. Lord, we pray that you would help us to be faithful in the 10,000 small things that you put in our way every a single day.
That Lord, we pause now we grieve. We pray for the families in New Zealand who lost loved ones. We grieve for them. We long for the day when Isaiah too will be a reality. Where the nation's lay down their swords and we'd study war no more.
And there's no more killing. There's no more death, no more disease and no more tears. No more pain. We pray for those closer to home in Nebraska are experiencing terrible disaster. We pray from people who were in the midst of the darkness.
Come to them in this moment. No, This we ask in Christ. Holy name. Hey, man.