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Showing posts with label #leestrobel. Show all posts
Showing posts with label #leestrobel. Show all posts

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Seizing Spiritual Opportunities

Sunday, August 3, 2014
Harvest OC
Lee Strobel

Frank Sontag was a New Age Spiritualist leader on the radio- he came to Christ in his fifties.

He used to be on the Mark and Brian Morning Show.

Ozzy Osbourne was someone he interviewed. He actually told him that he was a follower of Christ; Ozzy told him that he did believe there was a God and he wore crosses because of that, but he knew he did bad things. He didn't get a chance to share his faith with Ozzy.

Frank told Greg he couldn't believe he was actually a spiritualist at some point, that it really is the doctrine of yourself.

He came to Christ after he watched his friend’s life change over a three-year period. It was a huge change that he witnessed in his friends life.

That friend questioned his beliefs and it changed him when his friend asked, "if you died today, are you right with God?"

He had a quick response saying that he was, but that was a lie and he knew it. Then he felt God asking him "are you ready to submit to me?" His life has been changed forever!

This verse is his life passage:
Luke 9:23 NKJV
[23] Then He said to them all, "If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.

Nelson's study bible says Luke 9:23 take up his cross daily: Although Jesus offered salvation as a free gift (John 1:12; 3:16–18; see Eph. 2:8, 9), He also warned that following Him would entail suffering and hardship (Matt. 5:10–12; see also Rom. 8:17; 2 Thess. 1:5).

Lee Strobel Notes: Seizing Spiritual Opportunities

He is talking about how he kept things together when he was slammed at work as a new believer and how his boss asked how this Christian thing is going. He noticed he was different since his conversion.

Lee was very happy to speak to his beliefs with him and it changed him forever.

Colossians 4:5-6 NLT
[5] Live wisely among those who are not believers, and make the most of every opportunity. [6] Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone.

Lee wants to talk about three people that walked in his life as a believer and helped change him.

1. Faith Regardless of Consequence:

First is Ron, who always lived his faith regardless of consequence. Ron was a second in command in a violent Chicago street gang.

Ron was a guy who plotted killing a rival gang member and the guy’s brother.

Ron pulled the trigger point blank on the guy twice and it didn't fire. But, it went off every other time. He fled from the police.

Later he came to Christ, and then he went and turned himself in, because as a believer he was convicted.

Even though he could of gotten away with it, he didn't. He didn't take the easy way out.

We need to live out our faith even when we have to pay a price as a result.

It can be a monetary price, sacrificing your pride, giving up a possession you love, forgoing a larger income, what ever it means you need to do it!

It cost Ron two decades of time in prison! Lee wrote an article about it. The judge read Lee's article and let Ron go. Ron told Lee, that judge showed him grace. It left a mark on Lee.

2. Live out Compassionate Christianity:
Doctors told Lee that there was something wrong with his baby when she was born. They told him that he needed to prepare for the worst.

He was an atheist at the time,

David was a devout follower of Christ that called Lee to let him know that he would do anything for him while they were going through this time of hardship.

David has affected Lee ever since, he can remember David saying that too him all those years ago because Lee always mocked David's faith prior to that.

Mark 10:45 NKJV
[45] For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many."

Matthew 5:16 NKJV
[16] Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.

Lee knows that David marked his heart and was an event that helped lead him to God.

3. Live out a Courageous Christianity:

Romans 10:13-14 NKJV
[13] For "whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved." [14] How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?

We have to take risk to reach people with the gospel.

Luke 19:7 NKJV
[7] But when they saw it, they all complained, saying, "He has gone to be a guest with a man who is a sinner."

Jesus was falsely accused of being a drunkard and a glutton because if how closely he interacted with people that were.

Leslie, Lee's wife, told him she had become a Christian.

Lee was mad, that he was a drunk, self-serving narcissist at the time. He had kicked a hole in the wall when she invited him to church once.

When he was hung over, she prayed, and then invited him to church. He said he would go, just so that he could get her out of that cult he felt she was in.

That day he heard a simple presentation of the gospel. So after that he spent two years trying to prove that Christian was a fake.

What he discovered instead was that it is real. After examining all the evidence, Lee fell to his knees and professed his faith.

We need to be like Leslie and just invite people.

We can invite them to the Harvest Crusade!

What's the worst that can happen, they say no. If they say yes they could find Jesus and be saved!

When God opens the opportunity we need to say a quick prayer and seize the opportunity.

He says do not wait to decide if we are going to share our faith.

We need to decide right now to take the opportunity to share our faith whenever we get the opportunity!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

If Jesus Lived In My House

Notes: If Jesus Lived In My House
Mothers Day Service - May 11, 2014
Guest Lee Strobel at Harvest
Matthew 5:13

Jesus commanded Christians to be salt and light to the world. What does that look like for us in the 21st century? Does it affect the way we care for our home, kids, work?

Believers Are Salt and Light

Matthew 5:13 “You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men. 14 “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lamp stand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.

God wants us to shine as Christians. What does that look like in the 21st century.

Lee wrote a book about this subject, he named it the “Unexpected Journey” because that is what it is like in these times.

When you live on the evangelistic edge, when you live to be the salt and the light, you don’t know where it will lead you.

When your prayer life takes a whole new dimension you don’t know where that takes you.

So what does that look like in the 21st century? What would it look like if Jesus Christ lived in my house.

  1. If Jesus Christ physically lived in my house, I believe before He talked to his neighbors about His Heavenly Father, He would talk to His Heavenly Father about His neighbors. He would pray.
    1. Jesus’ prayers were repeated over and over again, even from the cross.
    2. We need to pray the same prayer over and over for others.
      1. We seem to make the decision for others that they won’t come to Christ.
      2. Who have you stopped praying for, that you used to lift up to God but have now just given up?
        1. If Jesus showed up in your room and said I will answer all of your prayers from last week, would there be anyone else new in the kingdom of God? Lee finds that to be a convicting question.
        2. Jesus prayed for lost people until He was physically killed.
  2. If Jesus physically lived in my house He would let people know that His door is always open for any questions. Any question or doubts just come in and ask.
    1. John the Baptist would be one that you think would never doubt who Jesus was.
      1. When John the Baptist was thrown in prison and then sent his friends to ask Jesus if he was the One they were waiting for.
        1. Jesus replied to them, to go tell John the evidence they saw that He is the Messiah. 
      2. It is okay for us to have questions and occasional doubts.
        1. Only though if we pursue answers. You can’t let the doubts just stop you.
          1. Lee told us a story about him having a debate with an atheist. Dr. William Craig was the Christian, Professor Ziegler was the atheist.
          2. Atheist commentator from another debate between atheist and Dr. Craig stated that Dr. Craig spanked the atheist in the debate.
    2. Christians have an unfair advantage, because we have truth on our side.
      1. For us followers, the key word is not debate, it is dialogue and friendships. Praying that God would use as salt and light.
  3. Jesus would be authentic, He would not just proclaim the gospel he would live the gospel.
    1. Your neighbors are scanning you with the hypocrisy radar 24/7 when you say you are a Christian.
      1. Lee read a letter from a girl named Maggie, about how the bad Christians that she grew up with repelled her from wanting to be a christian.
Lee invited her to join a small group that was lead by a christian couple and she joined and then wrote him again. She said she needed to see people who’s actions match what they say. She said the christian couple in her group did those things, in fact she didn’t know why, she gave them tough questions and they were just kind to her.

Maggie's poem:
Do you know
do you understand 
that you represent Jesus to me, 

do you know 
do you understand 
that when you treat me with gentleness 
it raises the question in my mind, 
well Maybe He is gentle to, 
Maybe Hee isn’t someone who laughs when I get hurt, 

Do you know 
do you understand 
that when you listen to my questions 
and you don’t laugh 
that I think well, 
what if Jesus is interested in me too. 

Do you know 
do you understand 
that when I hear you talk honestly 
about arguments and conflicts 
and scars from your past, 
that I think well maybe I am just a regular person 
instead of a bad no good little girl who deserves abuse, 
if you care, 
then maybe I think He cares 

then there is this flame of hope 
that burns inside of me 
and for a while I’m afraid to breathe 
because it might go out, 

do you know 
do you understand 
that your words 
are His words 
that your face is His face 
to someone like me, 

please be who You say You are, 
please God 
do not let this be another trick this time. 

Do you know
do you understand 
that you represent Jesus to me.

  1. That poem made Lee cry and made him think of his neighbors.
    1. He called Maggie and she told him that she came to Christ
      1. It wasn’t the debates of Christ and atheist it was the love of Christians that brought her to Christ.

A sinner saved by grace living your life as Christ has saved you is all you need to do to bring many to Christ. 

Are you a Maggie running the other way?

Do you need a loving God that will love and validate you. 

Christ will not only redeem your soul but also will bring you on a serious of unexpected adventures that will be the joy of your life.


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