string(7) "m-66998" Burnt Hickory Baptist Church


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Jul 10, 2022

A Broken Heart For The Lost

A Broken Heart For The Lost

Speaker: Eli Laughlin

Series: Stand Alone Message

Category: Sunday Sermons

Keywords: church, identity, worship, prayer, faith, jesus, sunday, god, sermon, christian, gospel, kingdom, hope, preaching, believe, inspiration, purpose, preacher, motivation, bible study, missions trip, self improvement, live music, broken hearted, livestream, burnt hickory baptist church, finding hope, being on mission, burnt hickory worship, motivational video

Our Radiate Students just got back from their mission trip to Alaska, and Pastor Eli challenges us to have a broken heart for the lost. We learn that we need to live on mission, not just go on mission. That as we live out the daily rhythms of life, that we need to share the hope of Jesus to everyone with boldness. Take the example of our students and dig into scripture, be transformed, and reach out to those in our community who need hope.

Church, would you pray with me this morning? God, we love you. Father, we thank you. Father, we thank you for every testimony that was spoken here today. God, it's not us. It's all you. So, God, let us praise and honor your name this morning. God, would you continue to set a fire in our young people's hearts to reach the next generation? God, if you gave us a glimpse of that over these last ten days. Praise your name, Lord. So, Father, do with us what you please. Jesus. In your name, we pray. Amen.

Well, good morning, Church. If you don't know me, my name is Eli. I have the honor and privilege of being the high school pastor here at Burnt Hickory. And so, yes, I did take 87 kids halfway across the world to do a mission trip, and it was fantastic. And because this is the last service today, and I've already preached this four different times, I'm going to share a little story of my own since I didn't Paige was up here, or up in the classic service. And I was listening to her, and I was reminded we were at a park in Muldoon. You don't know where that's at, but I do It's in Alaska, and it's a little bit more It's not as affluent as some of the other parks that we were in. On the very back of that park was a tent, and it wasn't a tent like we would think it was a blue tarp that was kind of draped over some trees. And there was a little girl inside of it, about sixteen years old that had just ran away from her foster home because some abuse that happened in that foster home and because that team was there, we got to make a relationship with her, and they would go talk to her every day and got a chance to sit with her. And on Wednesday at Change Point, the church that we partnered with, we were doing a big youth outreach night and all the kids are really excited about it. And they were telling her about it and come to find out she spent the last $32 that she had to her name to taxi over to that church that night to hear about the love of Christ and then God showed up.

So, I want you to know, and I want you to be proud of how well our students represented Jesus. And it warms my heart. And so, if I'm emotional today, it's only because my heart is full. And I'm so pleased with how our students did. It just is amazing, amazing to watch when students get away from all of this, what God can do. So, this morning, I want to look at a passage in Acts Chapter four. I was reminded of this passage Tuesday night as we were doing a sound check for worship at Change Point because they wanted to see how well we were just being honest, right? Any time you show up to a church and you're doing the worship that Sunday morning, they want to test you out a little bit. So, Tuesday night we had a sound check with them and it warms my heart as I was sitting in the back of the auditorium watching our kids literally worship God with no audience. There's nobody in the auditorium. There's nobody here. And watching our students pour out their heart to God like they never have before. God brought this passage to mind for me, and I was reading through it. And to give you a little context in Acts Chapter three, right after Pentecost, The Resurrection of Jesus and Acts Chapter three, two of the disciples, Peter and John, were walking down a road that came across a temple called Beautiful, where there had been a man since birth that was lame. And for 40 years they laid this man in the same exact spot at this temple every single day so that he could beg for money or for food or for water, because that was his only means of survival. And Peter and John come walking along, and the man looks at Peter and John, as he would anybody else, and says, I need silver or gold. Peter and John replied, And I love this. It says, Silver and gold I do not have, but in the name of Jesus, stand up and walk. And the Scripture tells us that immediately he stood up and walked, that his legs were strengthened, that his ankles are strengthened so much so and he was so happy that he went and praise God's name in the temple where all the other religious people were.

Well, this didn't sit well with a little group called the Sadducees, and they were upset about it, and they had heard about it, and it had gotten back because people were starting to believe in the resurrected King Jesus. And so, they came, and they arrested Peter and John and they were putting them on trial. In front of everybody. And I want you to read with me an act chapter four, verse five, and we're going to walk line by line, verse by verse, to this. There's a couple of questions I want to ask you, and then we'll get out of here. Verse five says this The next day, the rulers the elders and the teachers of the law met in Jerusalem, and the high priest was there, and so were Caiaphas, John and Alexander and the other men of the High Priest family. In verse seven, they had Peter and John brought before them and began to question them. Now, with love for you to highlight or underline this question, they ask them By what power or by what name did you do this? That's a good question for me and for you. Now, Peter and John, knowing that these men, the Sanhedrin, had some power given to them by the Roman government, and they asked him to give a testimony as to what had happened in front of them. It had been really easy for them to cower down or to recluse, But I want you to hear in verse eight and nine what Peter and John said. Verse eight, then Peter highlight this filled with the Holy Spirit said to them, rulers and elders of the people, if we are being called to account today for the acts of kindness shown to a cripple and are asked how he was healed, then know this you and all the people of Israel. It is by the name of Jesus of Nazareth, whom you crucified, but whom God raised from the dead, and that this man stands before you. He is the stone you builders rejected, which has become the capstone. And if that wasn't a more savage move, verse 12, they sum it up. Salvation is found and no one else, for there is no other name under heaven. Which has been given to be saved. Now this is the same Peter that stood and denied Jesus three different times. Now, standing in front of some of the most influential, powerful people of the culture in that time because of the Holy Spirit of God stood in boldness and go. Make no mistake. What you have seen today, what these kids have performed and done in the testimony that you heard today is by nobody other than Christ himself.

Can I tell you, church yeah? You can clap. It's good. Yeah, you can totally clap. It's all good. We're Baptists. We can be a little charismatic at times. All right. Totally cool with that. Saw a lot of that in Alaska. Can I tell you There comes a time, and I was sitting in the back of that pew when I was reading this and God was just speaking in my heart, and I realized that we were on a mission trip, but I'm tired of calling it mission trips. This is a glimpse of how we should live every single day of our life. Church. There should be people looking at us and going by what name do you live by? Your life and your family looks so different by what name do you do these things by? We should be called to give a testimony of who God is to his church. 95% of Alaskans will not darken the door of a church. This year. 95%. That's a real stat by the SBC that's already there. Can I tell you what? It's the same here in Georgia. Church.

I think it's time to get out of the pews and start being the church. You know what I loved about being on a mission trip is that church can happen anywhere because we are the church that we can be in a homeless camp with 175 people that they ship from all over Alaska to this one camp. We can be out in the middle of the woods with needles all around us. Praise in the name of God and share in it. Or we can be in a church service. Or we can be door to door. You know, I loved one morning we were in a neighborhood extremely affluent. The only reason I know that is because I walked across the street and looked at a for sale sign in somebody's yard. It was a $900,000 house there. That very night we were in a homeless camp. The same hopelessness that we saw in that homeless camp was the same hopelessness that we saw in that affluent community. It's the same thing here in our community. We live in a community where everybody's needs are constantly met. We do, except for their spiritual needs. Church, my heart yearns for the day and the time we realize that we stop living for ourselves and start living for Jesus.

Can be really honest with you? It's easy for us to justify our actions, for us good Christians, to sit in here a lot of times and say, I'm living for God. Are you? Because I was sitting on that back pew going, why can't every day that we're at home look like today? Why do I have a mindset that right here, right now, everything that we do and I'm telling my kids every situation, whether we're in a Fred Meyer, which is pretty much Kroger right or we're at a park or we're going door to door, why can't we share our faith then? Why can't we share our faith when we're here at a ball field or at a football game on Friday night? Or Why can't you talk to your coworker that sits next to you every single day? Why is it only that when we're on a mission trip that we're only missional? And I had to stop, and I had to pause and reflect on that very thing. Because when the Holy Spirit of God fills our life, you know, the, you know, the secret formula is that the Spirit of God fill out is when you spend time with Him, when He pours in and he pours in, he pours. And it's no secret church. The reason that we have these kids read the whole New Testament for six to eight months is so God can constantly mold and shape their life to look more like him.

Now, when we sit in front of God have no agenda. Go God do with my life what you please. There's no choice but God to change inside of our heart, our actions, our mind, every single thing that we do to the point where we have no choice but to go look at what God's done. I love this picture of Peter because it displays the fact that our past doesn't determine our future. Could you imagine if Peter would have been like, Man, I denied Jesus, I'm no good? And here in this moment, in front of 5000 people standing in front of the most religious people of the time going it's by no other name than Jesus. My hope and my prayer, my challenge for you, church, is by what name are you truly living by? By what power sustains you? When you're tired from work, you have to come home and check on your wife and your kids’ hearts. But what power are you living by? Filled with the Holy Spirit, Peter and John proclaim the name and then look what it says in verse 13. And I love it. I love this highlight verse 13 This is for you and for me, for everybody. When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized they were unschooled, ordinary men they were astonished and took note that these men had been with Jesus. I don't know about you, church, but I want people to look at my life and go, They just been with Jesus.

There's nothing special about me or pastor staff or these students other than we serve an extremely extraordinary God and that He is so faithful despite the fact that we're all sinners - broken, that he uses us. Can you realize, church, that your broken past God makes whole for the testimony to honor and glorify Him in front of a lost and broken world to go there's hope? Church, we are that hope. I pray for the day that we take off this film, that everything's OK and go, It's OK not to be OK, but it's not OK to stay there. And God loves you and me so much that He is not OK. Just leaving you where you're at today. Every single day of our life. Gods expected to do a work in my life and in your life every day. There's not a second or an hour or a day that goes by that God's not trying to do something in you and through you. It's the whole gospel. It's all of the disciples. God used fisherman. Dudes that stunk. Could you imagine me on a fishing vessel back then? They probably cussed like sailors. That were as dumb as dumb. And God used those men to start his church God used those men to proclaim the gospel to all.

It doesn't matter what background you've come from, whether you're church or unchurched, whether you have a great testimony or if it doesn't matter, God wants to use you every single day of your life. Not on a mission trip. He wants to use you today. When we leave here and you're looking at your watch going, Hey, I got to get to lunch. He wants to use you he wants to use you tomorrow. When you go into work, students, he wants to use you and your friends and your school and where you're at. God has purposely put people in your life to build a relationship, to point to him. It's not about you. It's not about me. You know, I love I got the opportunity to sit down with almost not all I would say majority of the 87 students. And I asked them this very prompted question, what are you most scared about or nervous about going on this trip? Almost 100% of them said, I am nervous to just walk up to somebody and share my faith. But because of Jesus, because of him pouring into their life, I saw boldness like I've never seen before, filled by the Holy Spirit, the same Holy Spirit that's sitting here, that's sitting in your heart, believer, the same Holy Spirit that filled Peter and John. It's the same Holy Spirit of God that lives inside of you. We've got to start living as victors in Jesus and realize that we've already won, and we want to bring people with us. Unschooled, ordinary men just like me and you that can use your past and your future. Verse 14 and I love this, but since they could see the man who had been healed standing there with them, there was nothing they could say. The same man for 40 years that was begging, that could not walk, that was lame, is standing in front of them. And they had no choice but to look at that man and go, must be God. Because when God does something in our life, it's completely evident. When He saved you, he's given you a testimony, a story, only God. Verse 15.

So, they ordered them to withdraw from the Sanhedrin and then they conferred together. Verse 16. They asked, What are we going to do with these men? Everybody living in Jerusalem knows they've done an outstanding miracle and we can't deny it. Verse 17. But to stop this thing from spreading any further from the people, we must warn these men to speak no longer to anybody in this name. Listen to verse 19, or 18 through 20. Listen to the response. It called them in again and commanded them not to speak or teach all in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John replied, Highlight. Underline this for your life. Judge for yourself whether it's right in God's sight to obey you rather than to obey God. Church, you know what my greatest fear is? It's that we've started obeying culture and stopped obeying God. That we care way more about this world thinks about us than what God does. And I'm not talking about being angry and political and standing on your high ground. I'm talking about allowing God to penetrate your heart. And seeing people in this community how God sees them. And living our life so sold out for Jesus.

There is a leader on this trip. I'm not going to mention her name because she would hate me for it. She said something to me that stood this whole time. We were one night. We're tired we're 5 hours asleep on 48 hours getting everybody into Alaska. She was talking about how she hadn't seen her daughter in almost a month and I'm like over here weeping every time I get a picture of my daughter, right? Like I'm in the back corner like sheading a tear. And I miss her. And I was like, how do you do it? And she said this, and it blew my mind. When I die, I want my kids to look back at my life and say she was sold out on mission for Jesus. Man, that's my heart church. That should be our heart here Church. That our life should look so radically different that everybody around us should know that we're live in our life on mission for Jesus, not what this world says about us. We have been cowered down. We have been scared we have been desensitized to the fact that maybe we ruffle some feathers. The gospel, it ruffled feathers. There's one way, one truth, one life. It's through Christ Jesus. And I promise you, this world wants to know that they really do. And there are so many times we show up to event. Heaven forbid, we showed up to a car launch on a 4th of July with 5000 people on 4th of July. And I'm sitting here going, We're going to get ran out of this place. And you should have heard how people listened to the Gospel of Jesus that our students preached. Man, we don't give God enough credit for breaking down barriers and walls Church.

There's sometimes and there's moments in our life where we just trust God for him to give us the right words and the right thing, and we allow His Holy Spirit to guide us. He finishes this and verse 20. And man, I love this is what today's all about. Verse 20 says this, for we cannot help speak about what we have seen and what we have heard. Church, my prayer for us, my challenge for us this morning is that we allow God to penetrate our heart so much that God radically changes this community through us. And we're constantly celebrating the life change in Jesus. Church, it starts with me and you. There's no secret formula. There's no three points or six sub points other than are you dedicated and are you sold out for who God is and your family and your life personally? Because I know this community, they may not say it with their words, but they're looking for us for hope because we have it in Jesus. My challenge for you this week, just like I would challenge any of our students and what I love about our students is any time you give them a challenge, they meet that challenge. And they exceed it. My challenge for you this week is that you would draw so near to God that the Holy Spirit would be so evident and clear in your life that when you're in Kroger, you're at the gas station, you're in your school or your group or at your football training in the morning, the guy would penetrate your heart and go, that's who you need to talk to today.

I'm asking church for one person this week. I'm not asking for you to invite them to church, although that would be nice. We'd love to have them. I'm asking you to invite them to know Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. I'm asking you to share the gospel with them and give them an opportunity to respond. Church, when was the last time you looked at a coworker or a family member in the face and said, Can I just tell you about what my God has done for me? And can I ask you personally if you know Him as your Lord and Savior? And if not, why not? It's that simple. Will you have every word? No. Will God? Absolutely. Will you trust him? Will you be obedient to him this week and share your faith with one person? Would you pray with me?

Father, today, we thank you for your word. God, we thank you for your spirit moving in us and through us. God, we thank you for what's happened in Alaska. God, we're praising your name already for what you're going to do in the future here at Burnt Hickory. God set this next generations' hearts on fire for you. God set this generation that's here today on fire for you Jesus. God, when we don't have the words to say, Father, would your Holy Spirit speak loud and clear to us. God be with us as we draw close to you. Your word never changes. God, you never fail. God, let us rely upon that truth today. It's for Your Honor, for your glory and in your name we pray. Amen.

And I think you've got a just a little taste of what the last 12 days have looked like. It's been incredible to walk with these guys, to just be with them, to minister alongside of them. But I want to go a little farther and just say, this. If you've been around Burnt Hickory for the last couple of months, I think it's no secret that there is there's a stir of the Lord here. That He is really moving. We're watching people almost every week give their life to the Lord. We're watching people join this church every single week. We're watching live groups just really have some incredible moments of community in walking with the Lord. We got to see VBS. It's one of our largest ever and kids all over this building. And so many of them give their life to Christ. Middle School camp. Incredible. Alaska last week, just watching your students just be the hands and feet of Jesus This afternoon, kids camp is leaving out. Next week, Guatemala heads out and I'm telling you, God is moving. And he's been so faithful to us but he's calling us to be his people. He's calling us to be his representatives, just like Eli has just said. He's calling us to show the world what he's done in our hearts and lives. And I'm so proud of these guys just being able to be there this week and just watch. The student ministry and the worship ministries leadership to watch the receptivity, the connection between churches. And parents, let me just say this. Thank you. Thanks for trusting your kid with these guys. Church. Let me just say this. Thank you. You may not realize it, but you were a part of this trip. A lot of you prayed faithfully. You're giving supported. A lot of you followed this trip in more than just pictures, but in your heart and spirit, watching this happen. And that's what the church is. That's why every week that I get to get up here, I'm so excited because I can't think of another place, I'd rather be serving with a group of people like you guys.

Listen, if you're new to church today, man, thank you for being here. This is like an almost every week thing for us I feel like. We're celebrating something and we're looking for something. But as Eli said, if you need to give your life to Christ today, immediately after the service, I'll be standing over here. We've got some other counselors available, and we'd love to talk to you. Maybe God is just stirring in your spirit in a different way, whether it be through, maybe jumping into missions, maybe asking, Man, what can I do to be a part of this? Man, we'd love to walk with you through that process. But let me just say this God's moving and let's continue to pray that He does great marvelous things as the prophet Habakkuk says, so marvelous in which we wouldn't even understand.

Lord, today we celebrate you. God, we lift your name. God, this is not about a single church. This is about your sons and daughters. Representing you here Jesus. God, as we look towards the future of this church, God may today be a glimpse of who we are to our community. Let us be the light. Let us be the group of ordinary people who stand in the shadow of culture, giving light through the light of Jesus. Thank you, Lord, for today. Thank you for Lord, for the celebration. Thank you for every student and God, I pray that you set their lives on a trajectory to represent you. And it's in your name. We pray. Jesus.

Amen. Amen.

Bless you guys. We'll see you next week.