Summary of Figuring out life: one day at a time
Brent starts by telling us a story about visiting his brother’s house. His brother’s family is going on a cruise and it was obvious how excited the children were for this trip. They were living for that future event. Brent tells another story about a person who was more reflective and lived for the past.
Living for the present – Ephesians 5:15-21
Focusing on verses 15: as people we live our lives one of two ways, either wise or unwise. This connects back to the on-going theme in Ephesians about light and darkness. The wise person makes the most out of his or her life. The wise person who is also being “light” is seeking God’s instruction every moment. He or she won’t shy away from God’s influence.
Doing a time audit
It is so easy to lose track of how much time a person spends relaxing, hobbies, TV, movies, chores, work, and other time consuming activities. Paul (the writer of Ephesians) isn’t just calling us to do a time audit but he is reminding us that “time is evil.”
Time is evil
Brent admits that he hit the snooze button on his alarm four times. Brent explains to the audience that there is a snooze button with our interactions with God. We have great reasons to hit that snooze button.
Living a full life but still being unwise
A Christian can “live life to the fullest” by cramming it full of service acts yet still be unwise. This is possible because he or she can ignore God’s will for his or her life. Being busy isn’t “living life to the fullest.” No! Paul is telling us that God has a purpose for our entire life and each single day.
Each single day as a purpose as organized by God
God gives us each day and he has something for us to do that day. The purpose doesn’t have to be big ticket items. Small interactions are all throughout our day with our children, with our neighbors, with our co-workers, with random people.
What is controlling our life
Brent goes on to discuss alcohol and how it is a depressant. Whereas the Holy Spirit is a stimulant! Being drunk leads to debauchery and leads to an uncontrolled life. A person makes terrible decisions when they are drunk. A person isn’t as aware of his or her surroundings when he or she is drunk so how can this person stay tuned into God during those moments. We already admit we push the snooze button towards God when we aren’t drunk!
We are commanded to be filled with the Spirit
A Christian can’t do anything to get filled with the holy spirit. There is no special ritual. God has given his Holy Spirit as a gift. We have to be open to God’s will and accept the his gift. And Paul reminds us to continue to be open to God’s Holy Spirit: being “filled with the holy spirit”.
A spirit filled life has 4 ingredients
- Community – verse 18 – Speak to one another like we are in a live musical! (Hahaha). When Paul says we should speak to one another with Psalms, he means we must speak truth to one another. (Psalms was a reference to God’s old testament the only access to God’s Word at the time.)
- Worship – verse 19 – singing and praising God as a group, with community. Our worship times can’t just be intellectual it must also be affecting our hearts. Worshipping God must not be ritual. Worshipping God that is spirit filled is worshipping “in the moment.” When God’s people come to worship there will be authenticity and passion.
- Gratitude – verse 20 – with a spirit filled life a person will be so filled with thankfulness. A grumbling heart cannot also be filled with a joy filled heart.
- Submissions and humbleness – verse 21 – Biblical submission is always a choice: when a person chooses to be under someone else’s authority. Jesus gives the best example of true Biblical submission.
Brent concludes by asking the audience if, as Christians, are we living a spirit-filled life. We need to look at the moments God is going to put in front of us … at this very moment … as you read this on this website.
About this Message Series
This is a message in a series called Ephesians. The goal of this series is to discuss the topics and themes that arise from the New Testament book Ephesians. The book of Ephesians is a letter that Paul wrote while in prison. Sometimes it is called a Prison Epistle. It was written to encourage believers. He was encouraging other faithful followers of Jesus to serve in unity and love in the midst of persecution. This series was started in January 2016.