A Casual Adventure?

Worship Service for May 23, 2021 – Pentecost Sunday

WELCOME

Good morning, welcome and thanks for joining CrossPointe Community Church’s online worship presentation. As does the Apostle Paul in his letters to churches, I thank God for all of you and pray that as a result of participating today, you will draw closer to the Lord’s presence and grow more and more into His likeness.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Next Sunday is Gather to Scatter Sunday. After worship, we will be asking for several volunteers to go to the home of Ron and Rena Thomas. We’d like to give them a hand with a couple of outdoor projects. We are also going to give you all a chance to purchase some items for one of the group homes run by SHC. And lastly, we would like to encourage all of you to do business with local sponsors of the Where’s Chippy benefit. For example, if you have a hankering for good broasted chicken or pizza, check out Contessa’s on the Lake. This will be our way of saying thanks to them. We will be providing little thank you cards that you may hand to the folks you are doing business with.

CALL TO WORSHIP

On the day of Pentecost, all the believers were meeting together in one place. Suddenly, there was a sound from heaven like the roaring of a mighty windstorm, and it filled the house where they were sitting. Then, what looked like flames or tongues of fire appeared and settled on each of them. And everyone present was filled with the Holy Spirit and began speaking in other languages, as the Holy Spirit gave them this ability.

At that time there were devout Jews from every nation living in Jerusalem. When they heard the loud noise, everyone came running, and they were bewildered to hear their own languages being spoken by the believers. They were completely amazed. “How can this be?” they exclaimed. “These people are all from Galilee, and yet we hear them speaking in our own native languages! Here we are—Parthians, Medes, Elamites, people from Mesopotamia, Judea, Cappadocia, Pontus, the province of Asia, Phrygia, Pamphylia, Egypt, and the areas of Libya around Cyrene, visitors from Rome (both Jews and converts to Judaism), Cretans, and Arabs. And we all hear these people speaking in our own languages about the wonderful things God has done!” They stood there amazed and perplexed. “What can this mean?” they asked each other.

But others in the crowd ridiculed them, saying, “They’re just drunk, that’s all!”

Acts 2:1-13

OPENING WORSHIP SONGS

All for Love

Fieldes, Mia/Smith, J. Daniel

All for love a Father gave
For only love could make a way.
All for love the heaven’s cried
For love was crucified.
Oh, how many times
Have I broken Your heart.
But, still You forgive
If only I ask.
And how many times
Have You heard me pray,
‘Draw near to me.’

Everything I need…is You
My beginning, my forever.
Everything I need…is You.

Let me sing…all for love
I will join…the angel’s song.
Ever holy…is the Lord
King of glory…King of all.
Oh, how many times
Have I broken Your heart.
But, still You forgive
If only I ask.
And how many times
Have You heard me pray,
‘Draw near to me.’

Everything I need…is You
My beginning, my forever.
Everything I need…is You.

Everything I need…is You
My beginning, my forever.
Everything I need…is You…is You.

©2004 Hillsong Publishing/ASCAP (admin in the US and Canada
by Integrity’s Hosanna! Music) This arrangement ©2008 Hillsong Publishing/ASCAP
(admin in the US and Canada by Integrity’s Hosanna! Music)
CCLI License No. 1843349

Beautiful One

Hughes, Tim

Wonderful, so wonderful is Your unfailing love,
Your cross has spoken mercy over me.
No eye has seen, no ear has heard,
No heart could fully know.
How glorious, how beautiful You are.

Beautiful One I love,
Beautiful One I a-dore
Beautiful One my soul must sing.

Powerful, so powerful
Your glory fills the skies,
Your mighty works dis-played for all to see.
The beauty of Your majesty awakes my heart to sing
How marvelous, how wonderful You are.

Beautiful One I love,
Beautiful One I a-dore
Beautiful One my soul must sing.

Beautiful One I love,
Beautiful One I a-dore
Beautiful One my soul must sing.

You’ve opened my eyes to Your wonders anew.
You’ve captured my heart with this love,
‘Cause nothing on earth is as beautiful as You.

You’ve opened my eyes to Your wonders anew.
You’ve captured my heart with this love,
‘Cause nothing on earth is as beautiful as You.

Beautiful One I love,
Beautiful One I a-dore
Beautiful One my soul must sing.

My soul, my soul must sing,
My soul, my soul must sing,
My soul, my soul must sing, Beautiful One.

My soul, my soul must sing,
My soul, my soul must sing,
My soul, my soul must sing, Beautiful One.

Beautiful One I love,
Beautiful One I a-dore
Beautiful One my soul must sing.

© 2002 Thankyou Music
CCLI License No. 1843349

Spirit of the Living God

Iverson, Daniel

Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on me.
Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on me.
Melt me, mold me, fill me, use me.
Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on me.

Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on me.
Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on me.
Melt me, mold me, fill me, use me.
Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on me.

©1935. Renewed 1963 Birdwing Music (a div. of EMI Christian Music Publishing)
CCLI License No. 1843349

OPENING PRAYER

Our Father in heaven, as we gather to worship you on this Pentecost Sunday, we are ever so grateful that Your Son Jesus dispatched His Holy Spirit to come into our lives when we first believed. As a result of our being here today, may we be refreshed and refilled with His presence and power. For we ask it in the name of Jesus, amen.

THE GIVING OF THE LORD’S OFFERING

For those of you who participate in the Lord’s offering by giving through the mail, our address is P. O. Box 126, Chippewa Lake, OH, 44215.

As we consider once again our calling to give, be encouraged by what the author of the letter to the Hebrews writes: “Do not neglect to do good and share what you have for such sacrifices are pleasing to the Holy Spirit” (Hebrews 13:16).

PRAYER SONG

Consuming Fire

Hughes, Tim

There must be more than this
O breath of God come breathe within
There must be more than this,
Spirit of God, we wait for You.

Fill us a-new we pray.
Fill us a-new we pray.
Consuming Fire, fan into flame
A passion for Your name.
Spirit of God, fall in this place.
Lord have Your way,
Lord have Your way…with us.

Come like a rushing wind
Clothe us with power from on high
Now set the captives free
Leave us abandoned to Your praise.

Fill us anew we pray
Fill us anew we pray.

Consuming Fire, fan into flame
A passion for Your name.
Spirit of God, fall in this place.
Lord have Your way,
Lord have Your way…

Consuming Fire, fan into flame
A passion for Your name.
Spirit of God, fall in this place.
Lord have Your way,
Lord have Your way…with us.

©2002 Thankyou Music, PRS, admin. by EMI Christian Music Publishing.
CCLI License No. 1843349

MORNING PRAYER

Alan Robbins

Please join me in prayer.

Dear Lord, our Heavenly Father.

We are ever more thankful for the opportunity to be back in your house of worship on this Pentecost (Holy Spirit) Sunday.

We can feel the Holy Spirit of God working to bring some sort of normalcy to our worlds as we begin to recover from all the pandemic activities that have kept us apart.

Keep Pastor Randy in our prayers as he guides us to understand the Holy Spirit …and how it works in our lives ….and the call for the Spirit of God to fall upon us.

Lord, we know you will stay by our side. We know you will listen and guide our prayers to Reach Out… to Hold… to give Help… to give Love… to give Peace… to give Joy and to Call the Holy Spirit to those that are grieving, for those that are ill, for those that are hurting in any way and prayers for our own needs.

Thank you, Lord, as we give God’s Glory… and Grace… and Joy… and Refuge… and Strength… and Love… and Peace… and the Holy Spirit to our community and the world in which we live.

In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen

SCRIPTURE

Then the two from Emmaus told their story of how Jesus had appeared to them as they were walking along the road, and how they had recognized Him as He was breaking the bread. And just as they were telling about it, Jesus Himself was suddenly standing there among them. “Peace be with you,” He said. But the whole group was startled and frightened, thinking they were seeing a ghost!

“Why are you frightened?” He asked. “Why are your hearts filled with doubt? Look at My hands. Look at My feet. You can see that it’s really Me. Touch Me and make sure that I am not a ghost, because ghosts don’t have bodies, as you see that I do.” As He spoke, He showed them his hands and his feet.

Still they stood there in disbelief, filled with joy and wonder. Then He asked them, “Do you have anything here to eat?” They gave Him a piece of broiled fish, and He ate it as they watched.

Then He said, “When I was with you before, I told you that everything written about me in the law of Moses and the prophets and in the Psalms must be fulfilled.” Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures. And He said, “Yes, it was written long ago that the Messiah would suffer and die and rise from the dead on the third day. It was also written that this message would be proclaimed in the authority of his name to all the nations, beginning in Jerusalem: ‘There is forgiveness of sins for all who repent.’ You are witnesses of all these things.

“And now I will send the Holy Spirit, just as my Father promised. But stay here in the city until the Holy Spirit comes and fills you with power from heaven.”

Luke 24:35-49

“So let everyone in Israel know for certain that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, to be both Lord and Messiah!”

Peter’s words pierced their hearts, and they said to him and to the other apostles, “Brothers, what should we do?”

Peter replied, “Each of you must repent of your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. This promise is to you, to your children, and to those far away—all who have been called by the Lord our God.” Then Peter continued preaching for a long time, strongly urging all his listeners, “Save yourselves from this crooked generation!” Those who believed what Peter said were baptized and added to the church that day—about 3,000 in all.

All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord’s Supper), and to prayer. A deep sense of awe came over them all, and the apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders. And all the believers met together in one place and shared everything they had. They sold their property and possessions and shared the money with those in need. They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity; all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people. And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved.

Acts 2:36-47

The Kingdom of Heaven is like a treasure that a man discovered hidden in a field. In his excitement, he hid it again and sold everything he owned to get enough money to buy the field. Again, the Kingdom of Heaven is like a merchant on the lookout for choice pearls. When he discovered a pearl of great value, he sold everything he owned and bought it!

Matthew 13:44-46

THE MESSAGE

Randy K’Meyer

A Casual Adventure?

Who wants to play a quick game of jeopardy? The category is ‘words.’ The answer is, “a combination of contradictory or incongruous words.” 1

What is an oxymoron?

A few humorous examples: adult children, airline schedule, closet space, jumbo shrimp, freezer burn, sensitive guy, congressional ethics, federal budget; 2 and the oxymoron we are featuring today: casual adventure

I was in my late 20’s when a friend I worked with on the railroad became a Christian and spoke in terms of the Christian life as being an adventure. To me that was an oxymoron.

Adventure was hopping from one box car to the next while the train’s moving 50 mph and having to hit the deck before hurtling through the next tunnel. Adventure in my mind didn’t have anything to do with sitting in a church pew singing another verse of Blest Be the Tie That Binds. I just couldn’t picture myself becoming a Christian and sitting on some church committee arguing over whether the new hymnals were going to be red or blue.

But an amazing thing happened. After I became a Christian, I found that living a Christian life can, indeed, be an exciting adventure. For I discovered that there is a huge difference between thrills and thrills that fulfill.

I’m not sure what Peter, James, John and company did for adventure and thrills. Perhaps they went cow-tipping. But after what they experienced as disciples of Jesus, cow tipping lost its luster.

Some people go through life seeking one thrill after another, never realizing that Christianity provides a thrill that fulfills forever. I’d like to give you three reasons why living a victorious Christian life is, in Bill and Ted’s terms, an ‘excellent adventure!’

The first is that we have a commander-in-chief we can count on.

How can we be absolutely sure our commander on this adventure is someone we can count on? The most profound way is to ask and answer this question: “Is this leader willing to take a bullet meant for you?”

Jesus said to His first followers, “Greater love has no one than this; that one lay down his or her life for his friend.” That’s exactly what Jesus did for you and I.

In the 1993 hit film In the Line of Fire, Clint Eastwood played Secret Service agent Frank Horrigan. Horrigan had protected the life of the President for more than three decades, but he was haunted by the memory of what had happened thirty years before. He was a young agent assigned to President Kennedy on that fateful day in Dallas. When the assassin fired, Horrigan froze in shock. For 30 years, he wrestled with the ultimate question for a Secret Service agent: Can I take a bullet for the President? In the climax of the movie, Horrigan does what he had been unable to do earlier: he throws himself into the path of an assassin’s bullet to save the president. 3

Secret Service agents are willing to do such a thing because they believe the President is so valuable to our country that he is worth dying for.

At the cross, the situation was reversed. The President of the Universe believes that we are so valuable to His Kingdom that He actually took a bullet for each of us.

Wonderful, so wonderful is Your unfailing love, Your cross has spoken mercy over me.

It was written that this message would be proclaimed in the authority of His name to all the nations beginning in Jerusalem: ‘There is forgiveness of sins for all who repent.’

Luke 24:47

Jesus took a bullet for us! That’s not all our commander-in-chief does for us; that’s just the beginning of this epic adventure!

For Jesus continued in that text from Luke, “I will send the Holy Spirit, just as the Father promised” (Luke 24:49).

And 50 days later the promise was fulfilled when the Holy Spirit fell upon them and they were empowered to accomplish great things for the Kingdom of God.

This experience wasn’t limited to those present on the Day of Pentecost. When those whose hearts were pierced by Peter’s preaching asked him what they should do,

Peter replied, ‘Each of you must repent of your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. This promise is to you, to your children, and to those far away—all who have been called by the Lord our God.’

Acts 2:38-39

We too have the power of the Holy Spirit at our disposal!

But please note that we must nurture that opportunity. Paul says by our actions we can both “grieve” the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 4:30), even “quench” the Holy Spirit (I Thessalonians 5:19). He also says we should “walk in the Spirit,” (Galatians 5:25) be “led by the Spirit,” (Romans 8:14) and “be filled with the Spirit” (Ephesians 5:18).

If we are not careful, we can minimize or even negate the impact of the power of Holy Spirit in our lives.

Speaking of negating power, in Trains Magazine’s Heavy Hauls, I read about the heaviest train on record. It weighed in at 34,000 tons! That’s 68 million pounds!!4 That’s crazy! The heaviest I had ever been on was 18,500. Yet three locomotives can pull a heavy train like 60 mph with no problem. The secret of course, is that all that weight and the power to pull it rides on two slender ribbons of steel rail reducing the coefficient of friction.

But do you know what can render a locomotive completely powerless? It’s easy – simply remove it from those rails. Despite their great power, if the train’s engine is not on the rails, it cannot even move itself a single inch! Until it is re-railed, it will never accomplish the purpose for which it is intended.

God has made the power of the Holy Spirit available to us to assist Him in building His Kingdom on earth as it is in heaven. But unless we remain “on the rails,” we will become powerless.

How do we stay on the rails? By maintaining contact with God through His Word and prayer.

Devoting ourselves to the inner life will yield greater and greater effectiveness in the outward life of helping God bring His Kingdom to heaven as it is on earth.

That leads to the third reason why the Christian life is an adventure.

We have a mission that matters!

Luke tells us a “deep sense of awe” (Acts 2:43) came over those early disciples as they realized what a tremendous difference they were making in people’s lives.

There’s a story of the pilot on the airplane who gets on the intercom, “Ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain speaking. Today, we’re flying at an altitude of 30,000 feet, traveling at 580 mph. And I have good news and bad news. The bad news is we’re hopelessly lost. The good news is that we are making excellent time!

That describes me before I met Christ. Going 100 mph in life, but where was I going? What was I really accomplishing in the ultimate sense?

Jesus said, “Do not lay up for yourselves treasure on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasure in heaven” (Matthew 6:19).

You know, when we are on our death bed, I highly doubt any one of us will say, “Man if only I had spent a few more hours at work.” or, “Gee whiz, if I had only put a few more bucks in that Mutual Fund.”

I think that most of us will look back and wonder what kind of a contribution we made, what kind of a mark have I left, what have I done that really matters?

This Christian life is an excellent adventure because we are given an opportunity to participate in a mission that really matters because we’re talking things eternal. Each of us individually and collectively as a church has a role to play in the incredible challenge to build God’s Kingdom, offering His love to a world that is desperately crying out for it.

A guy walking down the street in a big city and comes upon a construction site. He watches three laborers all doing the same work. When he asked them what they were doing, one of them said, “Can’t you see, I’m breaking up rock?”
The second said, “I’m earning a living.”
But the third guys says, “I’m building a cathedral.”

That’s what we are doing. In the power of the Holy Spirit we are building a cathedral for God. It’s a mission that matters.

A mission that matters, not only to us; it also matters to God that it matters to us!

This is why Jesus said, “The Kingdom of Heaven is like a treasure that a man discovered hidden in a field. In his excitement, he hid it again and sold everything he owned to get enough money to buy the field” (Matthew 13:44).

If I might embellish that teaching; imagine a man digging in a field, someone else’s field, and he hears a clunk. As he clears away dirt, the top of a chest comes into view. He looks around, but there’s nobody there, so he starts to get excited. He feverishly digs until he can open the lid, and when he does, he just about falls over backwards, it’s full of gold and silver! So what does he do? He kind of goes fanatical; he covers it back up, races into town, places his house on the market, places his car on the market, puts his wife and kids on the market. He doesn’t care what it takes: He’s got to have that field, because he’s got to have that treasure.

What’s Jesus talking about? He’s talking about another oxymoron: a Casual Christian?
He’s saying that a Casual Christian is a contradiction in terms. That in light of the tremendous need for the Kingdom of God to come that we ought to be fanatical about our faith!

Paul says, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters” (Colossians 3:23).

World famous author, political activist, and lecturer Hellen Keller, who was the first deaf and blind person in America to receive a bachelor’s degree, once said, “The Christian life is either a daring adventure or nothing!” 5

You know I bet those first 12 disciples would have described themselves as casual followers of Jesus. The gospels read that way for the most part.

But you know, after they witnessed their leader take a bullet for them, once they experienced the power of the Holy Spirit explode in their lives, once they discovered that each one of them had a significant role to play in building God’s Kingdom, the adventure began.

That’s our story, my friends; that’s our story!

Lord use us, we want to get in the fray, we want to get involved in the biggest adventure of all time: as an agent of change; to bring someone to you, to cheer somebody up, to help someone grow deeper in the faith, to impact a life, to solve a problem, to touch a life in your name, to fulfill our purpose of sharing your grace with our community.

Lord, we don’t want to just break rock anymore or earn a living anymore. We want to build a cathedral right here in Chippewa Lake for you!

Why Lord? Because of what you have done for us!

I close with a story about how prior to President Abraham Lincoln signing the Emancipation Proclamation, a gentleman happened upon a slave auction in a crowded street. He saw one slave after another bought and sold. Then he caught sight of a young girl whose eyes were filled with fear. When the auctioneer opened the bidding for this girl, the gentleman shouted out a bid that was twice the amount of any other. There was silence for an instance, then the gavel fell.

The man stepped forward and waited at the bottom of the steps as the young girl was led down to her new owner. The rope which bound her was handed to the man. The young girl suddenly spit in the man’s face. He reached for a handkerchief and wiped his face, smiled gently at the girl, and said, “follow me.”

She followed him reluctantly to a nearby area where each deal was closed legally. The gentleman paid the purchase price, and unbeknownst to her, signed manumission papers which declared her legally free. He turned and presented the documents to her. She looked at him with uncertainty and asked, “What are you doing?”

He said, “Here, take these papers. I bought you to set you free. As long as you have these papers in your possession, no man can ever make you a slave again.”

After a long pause, she said, “You bought me to set me free?” “You bought me to set me free?” As she began to grasp the significance of the documents she held in her hand, she fell to her knees and began to weep. Through her tears of joy and gratitude, she said, “You bought me to set me free, I will serve you forever!”

Let us continue to serve the One who set us free as we continue this grand adventure!

CLOSING PRAYER

[Please pray as you feel God is directing you.]

CLOSING SONG

Shine, Jesus, Shine

Kendrick, Graham

Lord, the light of Your love is shining
In the midst of the darkness shining;
Jesus, Light of the world, shine upon us;
Set us free by the truth You now bring us.
Shine on me, shine on me.

Shine, Jesus, shine.
Fill this land with the Father’s glory;
Blaze, Spirit, blaze, set our hearts on fire.
Flow, river, flow.
Flood the nations with grace and mercy;
Send forth Your Word, Lord,
And let there be light.

Lord, I come to Your awesome presence.
From the shadows into your radiance;
By the blood I may enter Your brightness,
Search me, try me,
Consume all my darkness.
Shine on me, shine on me.

Shine, Jesus, shine.
Fill this land with the Father’s glory;
Blaze, Spirit, blaze, set our hearts on fire.
Flow, river, flow.
Flood the nations with grace and mercy;
Send forth Your Word, Lord,
And let there be light.

As we gaze on Your kingly brightness,
So our faces display Your likeness;
Ever changing from glory to glory,
Mirror’d here, may our lives tell Your story.
Shine on me, Shine on me.

Shine, Jesus, shine.
Fill this land with the Father’s glory;
Blaze, Spirit, blaze, set our hearts on fire.
Flow, river, flow.
Flood the nations with grace and mercy;
Send forth Your Word, Lord,
And let there be light.

Shine, Jesus, shine.
Fill this land with the Father’s glory;
Blaze, Spirit, blaze, set our hearts on fire.
Flow, river, flow.
Flood the nations with grace and mercy;
Send forth Your Word, Lord,
And let there be light.

©1987 Make Way Music
CCLI License No. 1843349

BENEDICTION

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.

Romans 15:13

1 https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/oxymoron

2 http://www.oxymoronlist.com/

3 Douglas G. Pratt, Allison Park, Pennsylvania. Leadership, Vol. 16, no. 2.
https://www.preachingtoday.com/illustrations/1997/april/3140.html

4 Trains Magazine, Heavy Hauls, page 40.

5 73 Best Helen Keller Quotes
https://www.sportsfeelgoodstories.com/73-best-helen-keller-quotes/

Randy K'Meyer

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