Made for More (Your Part in the Story) pt. 1

All Scripture taken from the New Living Translation

We are starting a new sermon series today. This sermon series is titled, “Made For More,” and it is designed to help us understand how we can join God in revealing His Kingdom to those around us.

All of us are in different places with our faith. Some of us are doing the stuff, and we’re almost embarrassing to our friends because wherever we go, we see opportunities to join God in revealing His Kingdom to others.

And some of us are so timid in our faith it would take a miracle of God to get us to step out of our comfort zone.

These are the “book ends” of the spiritual spectrum… And then there is the in between… And that’s where most of us are…. Somewhere in between.

I believe the in between is where we are more apt to hear God’s voice.

So, for the next several weeks, we are going to discover that we are all made for more than what we are doing.

And today we will start the series by looking at how we can play a part in the story… The story of God’s Kingdom here on earth.

Let’s just jump right into it and read a story from the Gospel of Luke. Many of you may be familiar with this story…

Luke 8:40-48: On the other side of the lake, the crowds welcomed Jesus, because they had been waiting for him. Then a man named Jairus, a leader of the local synagogue, came and fell at Jesus' feet, pleading with him to come home with him. His only daughter, who was about twelve years old, was dying. As Jesus went with him, he was surrounded by the crowds. A woman in the crowd had suffered for twelve years with constant bleeding, and she could find no cure. Coming up behind Jesus, she touched the fringe of his robe. Immediately, the bleeding stopped. "Who touched me?" Jesus asked. Everyone denied it, and Peter said, "Master, this whole crowd is pressing up against you." But Jesus said, "Someone deliberately touched me, for I felt healing power go out from me." When the woman realized that she could not stay hidden, she began to tremble and fell to her knees in front of him. The whole crowd heard her explain why she had touched him and that she had been immediately healed. "Daughter," he said to her, "your faith has made you well. Go in peace."

Picture this with me. Prior to this story, Jesus was on the other side of the lake, the Sea of Galilee, and he delivers a man from demon possession… So many demons were tormenting this guy that Jesus sends them away and they enter a herd of pigs and jump off a cliff into the lake and drown…

This freaked the entire town out that they beg Jesus to go away and leave them alone. The people were more concerned with what happened than they were with the man being delivered from demon possession…

So now Jesus returns… Crowds of people are waiting for Him. And a man named Jairus, who is the leader of the local synagogue falls at His feet and pleads with Jesus to come to His house because his 12-year-old daughter is dying.

As Jesus follows Jairus to his house, crowds of people surround him… What are we talking about here, 50, 100, 200, or more people? It’s chaotic… filled with excitement and anticipation… Can you picture this scene?

Then, a lady appears with some sort of issue involving bleeding… We don’t know exactly what the issue was, but we do know she couldn’t find a cure. Some versions say she spent all her money on doctors… For twelve long years, this lady had been physically unhealthy.

This medical condition meant that she couldn’t attend the synagogue, go to the temple, or participate in any of the Jewish festivals. She had to announce her uncleanliness to those around her. She was an outcast, suffering immensely.

However, she doesn’t try to get Jesus’ attention, nor does she cry out for help. She manages to get as close as she can amidst the chaotic crowd and reaches out to touch the fringe of His robe, the hem of His garment. Immediately, she is healed!

Many sermons have been written about this story, but did you know that many people were healed just by touching Jesus’ robe? According to Matthew 14:35-36: “When the people recognized Jesus, the news of His arrival spread quickly throughout the whole area, and soon people were bringing all their sick to be healed. They begged Him to let the sick touch at least the fringe of His robe, and all who touched Him were healed.”

Can you imagine dealing with a severe health issue for twelve years and suddenly feeling healing come upon you? You’ve gone unnoticed until now, and suddenly you’re healed. Jesus, amidst a chaotic moment, stops everything and asks, “Who touched Me?” He says, “Someone deliberately touched Me, for I felt healing power go out from Me.”

This is a powerful moment. Shaking, she falls at Jesus’ feet and the whole crowd listens as she explains to Jesus why she touched Him. Imagine the life of humiliation she led up until this point, and in her mind, it’s probably getting worse as she explains her story.

But His response is, “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace.”

We don’t even know her name, and we don’t need to. Because Jesus just restored her dignity. He gave her back everything she lost, and in front of the entire crowd of people, she is now referred to as a daughter of the King of kings.

Some of us in this room already know where the rest of this sermon is going. All we need to do is get close enough to Jesus so we can touch His robe, and we too can receive our healing. This is true. However, that’s not our focal point today.

We live in a world where humanity is broken – hurting, lost, and confused. Like sheep without a shepherd. And all they need is to touch the robe of Jesus. But do they know this? Do they know that Jesus is what they need?

Furthermore, who is going to point them to Jesus? Essentially, we are the robe. By pointing people to Jesus, by being a people who represent Jesus, we are the ones who usher in His presence, so the lost and hurting can have the same experience as the woman in the story.

So, they can now experience the kingdom of God like the woman in the story.

Acts 5:15-16 states: “Sick people were brought out into the streets on beds and mats so that Peter’s shadow might fall across some of them as he went by. Crowds came from the villages around Jerusalem, bringing their sick and those possessed by evil spirits, and they were all healed.”

The power of God was so rich that healing was found in Peter’s shadow. Jesus wasn’t even physically present, yet all who came to the apostles, to the early church, looking for a touch from Jesus… All who came were healed!

Church, this could be us. This should be us. The church ushering in the Kingdom of God in a way that all who experience it are healed and delivered. We are called to be a people who are not so consumed with ourselves that we can step away from our agenda for a minute and recognize when someone is literally reaching out to touch the robe of Jesus.

So, what’s keeping us from being the people we are called to be? Could it be because some of us are just as broken as we were when we first came to Jesus?

Some of us are accepting, loving, and forgiving… Full of joy and hope, and reconciliation. And some of us are full of doubt, bitterness, and unforgiveness… Full of anger, judgment, and hurt. How do we mend our brokenness so we can be the person others see as an invitation to Jesus?

Proverbs 4:23 states: “Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.” We are both natural and supernatural beings, and whatever is in our heart affects everyone around us.

“Well, you don’t know how bad that person hurt me. You don’t know the things that have been done to me… You don’t know how unfair life has been to me.” You’re right, I don’t know. But everyone around you are the recipients of the supernatural power that comes from within you.

We cannot hold onto past hurts and think we are going to introduce others to Jesus. When Jesus is saying, “You have a broken heart and I have been trying to bring the healing, but you will not let go of that hurt.” Everything about the kingdom of God hangs in the balance when we hold onto past hurts. Allow Jesus to bring the healing, and then guard your heart above all else.

1 Peter 5:7 states: “Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares about you.”

I believe that this desire is given to us by God, as it is His wish that we join Him in reconciling a broken humanity to their Creator.

Ephesians 2:10 states: “For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things He planned for us long ago.”

Some of the good things He planned for us long ago include us joining God in the adventure of reconciling a broken humanity back to Him. This is how we become part of God’s story!

The Value of Money (Inspiring Short Story about Self-Worth)

At the beginning of a new school year, a class teacher stands up in front of her students holding a $100 bill. She tells them, “Put your hands up if you want this money.”

Every hand in the room goes up, to which the teacher says, “I am going to give this money to someone here, but first, let me do this.”

She takes the bill and crumples it up in her hands, before asking, “Who still wants it?”

The hands stay up.

The teacher then drops the bill on the floor, stomps and grinds it into the ground, and picks it back up. “How about now?” she asks again.

The hands stay up.

“Class, I hope you see the lesson here. It didn’t matter what I did to this money, you still wanted it because its value stayed the same. Even with its creases and dirtiness, it’s still worth $100.”

She continues, “It’s the same with us. There will be similar times in your life when you’re dropped, bruised, and muddied. Yet no matter what happens, you never lose your value.”

Moral of the story: Life’s hardships are inevitable and we’ll all be put through the ringer at some point, often through no fault of our own. Don’t let these challenges alter your feelings of self-worth. You’ll always be enough; you have something unique and special to give and offer the world.

When you’re hanging on by a thread, make sure it’s the hem of His garment.


Please enjoy some content from some our guest contributors. Be blessed to be a blessing!

Laura Jean Truman

Don’t Tread on Me
“Don’t tread on me” is a phrase that originated in 1745. It is credited to five companies of Marines who joined
George Washington at the Battle of Bunker Hill. Before it was flown on a flag, it was emblazoned on bright yellow drums accompanying a coiled rattlesnake with 13 rattles. This iconography is why I think the Gadsden flag has remained. A rattlesnake makes sure that anyone or anything that crosses the threshold of its territory knows it.
What about resources? What if your territory has a well, the only fresh water for miles.
Is the well yours? What about the water?
Or a garden? What if you are the very first person to encounter a particular area or place? You can’t just sit and guard your territory all day, but you want to make sure if you are not around and a stranger stumbles across your territory, they have a clear understanding that the area (LXW) has been claimed and belongs to someone.
A flag would signal that someone is ready to fight over the property. Where you plant your flag is your territory; and if there is already a flag, planting yours beside it is as clear a challenge as any territorial person needs.
There’s a funny concept when it comes to land/territory that has always intrigued me, both because of its longevity and that it seems so juvenile: ‘Dibs’ or the I was here first’ argument/justification for ownership.
Of course, you can challenge, plant your flag next to his and let the chips fall where they may. As society began to evolve, property began to take on a new meaning; it seems now that all ideas, animals, and things

Dustin, Inside Member, PFC

Territorialism is a Life Force
With meaning that goes far beyond the turf it’s named after, territorialism is a character trait. It’s a competitive force, with desires and demands. It needs to dominate, possess, and have power over something or someone. It’s jealous, envious, and agonizes over fulfilling its desires. Fulfillment comes with satisfaction and pride. It’s a juxtaposition, a communal fluid that bleeds into all relationships and encounters, while being standoffish, holding all others at bay. It sends out roots to claim pockets of water, and white blood cells to fight off viruses and disease, so that plants and animals can survive.
Without territorialism ecosystems wouldn’t exist, there’d be no checks and balances, no boundaries, no yours and mine. There wouldn’t be committed relationships, probably no marriages or family as we know it. I doubt there’d be a Maury Povich show; we may never know who the father is. Would there still be such a thing as striving for life?
As standoffish as the word seems on the surface, life may depend on territorialism in the way that it depends on carbon and liquid water to exist. I am alive because my territorialism claims the space to live.

John, Inside Member, PFC

I am descended from warriors that were captured in their homelands to survive the ocean of omens to the land Satan was roamin’ relentless because I belong to no man voices of freedom saying but what did freedom bring just the truth that I’m not property
I built this land but I inherit privation full of ghetto prodigies only taught demonic psychology but that’s what the outsider see from the boundaries of our territories
so let me paint our story my hood don’t just survive it thrives
and culture, in living color to sustain lives in these projects love grows through the generations the love stays true
because this is all we know here I done seen dreams bloom out of a dark room
just to turn our territory into a pyramid which also doubles as a tomb here I come out of the womb by these boundaries I was groomed but to some
by these boundaries I was doomed but this is my pride the heartbeat of my tribe the territory of where the sunrise let the sunshine
as I feel its warm embrace this is our home
that holds our hearts in place so territory to me
is wherever I feel loved and safe

Elijah. Inside Member, PFC

Territory as Personal Space
Territorialism and personal space intertwine to create emotional intelligence. Ones sense of territory is connected to one’s thought process or expression of one’s mood
Most people think of territory as a neighborhood or a large area that is owned. The authentic or true nature of territory is very intimate and small. It is the way you go about mentally expressing your passion for your territory.
Good or bad, it influences a large portion of your life. It indirectly affects those around you because it is really a matter of personal space being infringed upon or not respected.
Emotional intelligence plays a significant role in all of this because most human beings have never properly identified their different moods. For instance, when a person feels their personal space is being attacked, they must work through multiple emotions, whether they feel upset, or frustrated, or letdown, or confused, or loved, or respected–all of these different variations are different emotions. Those of us that can recognize these feelings and learn to use our feelings in more productive ways have an advantage over the rest. This distinct advantage in life will bring not only our territorial views full circle but allow the human race not to continue to be victims of the battlefield or of the territory that is our minds.

I’Yanna, Inside Contributor

Home is Where You Hang Your Hat
Regardless of socioeconomic status, or the number of things you had dibs on, every person requires a certain amount of space to merely exist. Somewhere to sit, sleep and even relieve themselves. All of these areas may qualify as territory and if you think I’m wrong, go try to pitch a tent in big Johnny’s spot on Skid Row and see what happens. The less territory a man has, the more the value increases and the more intense are the lengths he will go to defend his territory, perhaps even to the point of defending it with his life.

Dustin, Inside Member. PFC

To be Christlike, I’ve never been the right type..
By tonight might end up in a knife fight
-or gun battle.. or drug war..
What could I love more than funds, guns, blood-n-gore?
Won’t have the benefit of ever plead’ innocent
Crime pays n more ways than we envisioned it…
We r witness’ n confessions that were neva said
B4 2day that say “I would’ve lived better dead”
So why beg 4 a life that I don’t derve?
Jus’ go and kill me cuz I really wanna go and serve..
The most high… n paradise.
But 2 B fair, I won’t B there or anywhere with Christ..
I live a life full of strife and of bad taste..
I’m just a sad case graced with my dad’s face.
And a Christian, only on Sunday…
Monday, I return 2 all my young ways.
4 every day I live 2 C the sunshine…
I pray and give thanks at least I time…
I kno’1 ain’t been livin’ like ur son, God.
But I hope I’ve been 4givin’ cuz I’m done try’n
I made a choice I’ma live wit and die 4..
I survived war just n time 2 find more…
Will I die or… live n filth and trash?
I’m only built 2 last as long as I am filled wit’ gas..
But with blessed assurance God provides the best insurance…
2 brave the test he gave my spirit and my flesh endurance…
It’s all driven solely by the love he feel’n fo’ me.
Upon his Judgment, hope he doesn’t say he didnt kno’ me.
‘uz I ain’t livin’ Holy, so will he give up on me?
I wouldn’t blame’m, but I hope that he 4give the homie.
B’n so stressed is equal 2 a slo death.
Thez who kno’ best r people who get no rest.
I am no less… driven 2 given’ up…
I prayed 4 redemption but it didn’t come…
Or did it? I’ll admit it, it’s a pipe dream…
Don what’s right ain’t as easy as it might seem..
[Repeat chorus]
There wasn’t one time I ain’t wanna unwind…
From b’n tired of b’n tied 2 this front line… on the 1 side, I kno’ that it’s unwise…
But I’m fried’ and my pride keeps me from try’n
2 bury it, why I even carry it?
Scarey cuz they vary, the xcuses u can spare me wit!
There’s 2 of me…but usually..
My dark side is the part I don’t want u 2 c.
N the deepest crevice, right where all the grief’s embedded..
There’s a secret fetish I relish but need 2 edit.
No preist or medic.. can save my mangled soul.
I’m in a stranglehold by that of which I can’t control…
So, I pay the toll…it’s just the cost of livin
Some say I lost my vision and I’m better off n prison…
Then I’m a blind man, who ran across his mission 2 c and finely b free, which mean it brought redemption,

Anonymous, Inside Member