From the Pastor
Pastor Mike Burns
903.567.2072 (Ext. 3002)
Six Characteristics of Kingdom Risk Taking
Six Characteristics of Kingdom Risk Taking
On Sunday, July 25th, I finished preaching the series, Taking a Kingdom Risk. In this series we learned that Kingdom Risk Taking is a necessary component of true discipleship and is a Kingdom protocol (code of conduct) for following Jesus Christ. Jesus calls us to risk, to obey and step out in faith for His glory and to the fullest potential for the kingdom of God realized. Every great risk in Jesus’ Name begins with confidence in the goodness and trustworthiness of God. That He who calls us to “step out in faith” means to trust the One who supplies us with whatever we need to fulfill plans and purposes in and through us.
Kingdom Risk Taking has 6 Characteristics that helps us recognize and understand what is required in in this endeavor. The first five characteristics I have preached about and they are described on the podcast at our website (wordofvictory.org). Here is a synopsis of the last and sixth characteristic:
- Kingdom Risk Taking Is Rooted in Identity.
- Kingdom Risk Taking Is Calculated.
- Kingdom Risk Taking Is Rooted in Faith, Not Fear.
- Kingdom Risk Taking Invites Uncertainty.
- Kingdom Risk Taking Requires Persistence.
- Kingdom Risk Taking Ensures Growth.
The righteous flourish like the palm tree and grow like a cedar in Lebanon. 13 They are planted in the house of the Lord; they flourish in the courts of our God. 14 They still bear fruit in old age; they are ever full of sap and green…
Godly risk taking is different than the risk tied to immediate gratification, which is plentiful in our culture.
- Immediate gratification is often self-serving and short sighted.
- Kingdom Risk Taking is God-driven with long range
The latter can take you some place different, some place better!
Obeying God and stepping out of our comfort zone to trust Him and to walk by faith not only has positive repercussions for us and others around us today, but also for generations to come in the future (see Gen. 26:24).
Because it requires discipline, tempering the uncertainty (characteristic #4) and persistence (characteristic #5)…however, Godly Risk Taking is less common among many Christians.
“Guard my words as your most precious possession. Write them down and also keep them deep within your heart.” (Proverbs 7:2 TLB)
This summer I have challenged everyone (kids and adults), in our congregation at Victory to memorize 10 verses of scripture. I don’t want us at Victory to be biblically illiterate. By illiterate I don’t mean stupid or dumb. “Illiterate” means to display a “marked lack of knowledge in a particular field.” In this case…the field is the Bible. After all, many of us claim to be Christians and followers of Christ. We should be able to have a basic knowledge of the Scriptures.
One of the most powerful ways you can transform your spiritual life is to learn to memorize Scripture. The Bible says in Proverbs 7:2 “Guard my words as your most precious possession. Write them down and also keep them deep within your heart” (TLB).
You may not believe you can memorize Bible verses, but that’s just not true. You can memorize what you want to memorize. If you’re in the U.S., you’ve probably memorized the Pledge of Allegiance. You may have memorized the Lord's Prayer. You memorize what’s important to you: phone numbers, song lyrics, recipes, and baseball stats. How important is the Bible to you?
It's a matter of motivation rather than skill. David wrote in Psalm 119:72, “The law that you gave means more to me than all the money in the world” (GNB). When you understand how important and how valuable God's Word is, you’ll get serious about memorizing significant portions of it.
Why should you memorize God's Word?
•It’s the number one tool for resisting temptation. When Satan tempted Jesus in the wilderness, his only defense against this attack was the Word of God. If Jesus knew a better way to fight temptation, believe me, he would have used it.
•It helps you make wise decisions. I can’t count how many times I've asked God for guidance about something very specific, and he has brought a Scripture I’ve memorized back to mind, showing me what to do. The Bible says, “Your word is a lamp to guide me and a light for my path” (Psalm 119:105 GNB). The more you know what God says, the more you are going to know how God thinks, because the will of God is found in the Word of God. The more you fill your mind with the Word of God, the more you will know the will of God.
•It strengthens you when you’re under stress. We all get stressed from time to time. And the Bible says this, “Remember your promise to me; it is my only hope. Your promise revives me; it comforts me in all my troubles” (Psalm 119:49-50 NLT). If you will memorize Scripture, your stress level will decrease dramatically and your confidence level will increase dramatically.
•It comforts you when you’re sad. The Bible is full of comfort. Jeremiah said, “Your words are my joy and my heart’s delight” (Jeremiah 15:16b GWT). I can't tell you how many times I have been down and read Scripture, and it gave me great comfort.
•It helps you witness to unbelievers. 1 Peter 3:15 says, “Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect” (NIV). If someone asks you what the Bible says about an issue or what they should do in a situation, what do you tell them? If you have Scripture memorized, it’ll help you be far more effective in sharing because you can share the truth of God’s Word.
Pastor and Christian author Chuck Swindoll wrote, “I know of no other single practice in the Christian life more rewarding, practically speaking, than memorizing Scripture. . . . No other single exercise pays greater spiritual dividends! Your prayer life will be strengthened. Your witnessing will be sharper and much more effective. Your attitudes and outlook will begin to change. Your mind will become alert and observant. Your confidence and assurance will be enhanced. Your faith will be solidified” (Growing Strong in the Seasons of Life [Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1994], p. 61).
Our Write It on Your Heart scripture campaign begins Sunday, June 7. Here is the calendar and the 10 verses for summer 2015:
Week 1 June 7 John 3:16
Week 2 June 14 Romans 3:23
Week 3 June 21 Romans 6:23
Week 4 June 28 2 Corinthians 5:17
Catch up week July 5 No Scripture Assigned
Week 5 July 12 Colossians 2:6
Week 6 July 19 Colossians 2:7
Week 7 July 26 Philippians 4:19
Week 8 August 2 Matthew 6:33
Catch up Week August 9 No Scripture Assigned
Week 9 August 16 Acts 10:38
Week 10 August 23 Hebrews 13:8
Catch up week August 30 No Scripture Assigned
See you Sunday,
Published on Tuesday, June 2, 2015 @ 9:23 AM CDT