DARE TO EXCEL DURING THE COVID-19 CONFINEMENT!

DARE TO EXCEL DURING THE COVID 19 CONFINEMENT

DARE TO EXCEL DURING THE CONFINEMENT (SERMON) (1)

CHRIST THE ROCK CONGREGATION
SUNDAY APRIL 19TH 2020
DARE TO EXCEL DURING THE COVID-19 CONFINEMENT
By Pastor Marc Simeon
Psaume 84:6-8)
6) Heureux ceux qui placent en toi leur appui! Ils trouvent dans leur cœur des chemins tout tracés.
7) Lorsqu’ils traversent la vallée de Baca, Ils la transforment en un lieu plein de sources, Et la pluie la couvre aussi de bénédictions.
8) Leur force augmente pendant la marche, Et ils se présentent devant Dieu à Sion.
Psalm 84 : 5-7
5 Blessed is the man whose strength is in You, Whose heart is set on pilgrimage.
 6 As they pass through the Valley of Baca, They make it a spring; The rain also covers it with pools.
 7 They go from strength to strength; Each one appears before God in Zion.
 
INTRODUCTION
The whole world is under the advisory or mandatory confinement while governing officials are trying to figure out a way to halt the spread of the corona virus.
To modern people, confinement is a bad word. We create all sorts of machines to travel far away from our homes on a daily basis if necessary.
Confinement in our present world is a negative word synonymous to prison, punishment, and unfair restrictions.
Today, by the grace of God, I want to launch a challenge to all. I want all of us to project how we will excel in meaningful areas in our lives during the confinement.
 
THE WORLD WE LIVE IN
·                    Without realizing it, our lives have been greatly alternated by the industrialization of this world.
·                    Up to now, we’ve praised ourselves for our busyness and criticized those who are not following the same plane.
·                    We have expected family and friends to understand and to forgive us for our neglects of them; for they know that we are very busy.
·                    We’ve tried to sell it to God as well, and we’ve said, “God sees and understands all things”.
o        “As soon as I graduate, I will spend endless time with God”.
o        “As soon as I get done with this or that project, I will spend more than ample time in the presence of God”.
o        “I promise to God that our intimacy will excel the level it was before when I am done”.
o        “My giving of time and money and devotion, and prayer will double”.
 
·                    Unnoticeably, our priority have being shifted to a “Me first paradigm”.
·                    Although we would rationalize it or deny it altogether, we have also adopted a “Here and now first paradigm”.
Example
My little brother is one you would call in Creole a (Kè pòpòz), a lay back person, one also who can turn to a flying bullet when a deadline is approaching. One day we were flying to Florida together, to my credit, we got to the airport way ahead of the departure time, because, I am the exact opposite.
After having made it to the gate, I dropped my guard and retreat to a relax mode. So, we decided to find something to eat and enjoying our company and cranking some old jokes. While, we were amusing ourselves, the gate had already opened and all the passengers had already boarded the plane. The airport went crazy calling our names but we did not pay attention to that. When we decided to head back to the gate, we noticed that the whole section where we were was deserted; then, we started to run saying OMG, OMG, OMG!!!
We did make it, but we nearly gave our older sister who was travelling with us a heart attack. The unpleasant look in the face of boarding agent could hardly be hidden while she offered the half smile of politeness to us. My brother was at ease in no time, but I could not believe that such a thing could happen to me. LOL
·        The mistake we made was to focus on the wrong thing at the wrong time. The body to body time and the large dinner plate should have been omitted to just focusing on our flight. 
·        We purchased the ticket; we got to the airport on time, yet we nearly missed the flight.
·        It is appropriate to compare the gaff we made to how many professed Christians chose to live their lives on earth.
FIRST, THE KINGDOM OF GOD
·        This confinement has forced many of us Christians not just to readjust to “Kingdom of God first” attitude, but for those who have been laid off from work, they are trapped to a “Kingdom of God only” or “corona virus only” attitude. To some, this idle period is comparable to a person who is trapped in an elevator with a God the stranger.
·        Just like the Children of Israel had to spend 70 years in exile as a payback for not respecting the sabbatical years ordered by God to let the earth rest, we are also faced with more than our desired free time during the confinement. For many, it is a payback for the many years of neglecting God.
 
USE THE CONFINEMENT AS INCUBATION TIME TO MATURE IN GOD
·        Birds use confinement for the purpose of incubation. As they rest on their eggs, they keep the eggs at the proper temperature for a successful incubation.
·        All serious Christians know the benefit of confinement in order to achieve new height in God.
·        Jesus put the disciples in confinement until the arrival of the Holy Spirit.
·        Jesus went in confinement in the sense of isolation for 40 days before the start of the ministry.
·        After each great day of ministry Jesus retreated in confinement for a recharge.
·        Paul was unfairly forced in confinement in the last days of his life and yet, out of it came the Prison Epistles (Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, and Philemon) that became parts of the sacred Cannon.
·        Moses went in confinement in God’s presence in the Mount Sinai for 40 days and upon his return, his face was visibly radiant with the glory of God. (Exodus 34)
·        At Antioch, many of the church leaders were in confinement in prayer and fasting when the Lord said to put Barnabas and Saul apart for the greatest missionary endeavor. (Acts 13)
·        Anna confined herself in the temple and out of it came the great prophet Samuel. (1 Samuel 1)
 
TAKE GOD WITH YOU IN THE CONFINEMENT
Growing up in Haiti, my parents did not believe in sending their kids in confinement in their rooms as means of chastisements, but in the States when children misbehave, they are asked to go to their rooms. I imagine myself being in a room where all my toys are, where there might even be a TV and a cell phone; I would call it heaven. I would take that punishment voluntarily as a kid.
·        While you are advised to keep your proper distance to all living beings during the confinement, God is of course the exception of the rule.
·        You can take God with you in the confinement whether you are sick or not.
·        This is the time to draw nearer and nearer to God.
·        This is the time for your soul to prosper.
·        This is the time to catch up in your Bible reading.
·        This is the time to store up some prayers for perilous times ahead.
·        This is the time to enhance your bonds with your immediate family
·        This is the time to get back in reading good Christian books.
·        This is the time to put in writing some of your thoughts and inspirations.
·        This is the time to organize your important papers and write down a will.
·        This is the time to start a prayer ministry or be part of one already existed.
·        This is the time to excel in your computer or media skills in order to better serve today’s generation.
·        This is the time to dream for the future.
·        This is the time to adjust your thinking and reprioritize your life to what’s essential.
·        This is the time to invent something.
·        This is the time to fix things around the house.
·        This is the time to reconcile with family members and friends who were at odd with you.
 
WHAT WILL THE NEW YOU LOOK LIKE AFTER PANDEMIC COVID-19?
·        The world as we know it will change after this crisis.
·        Our knowledge of pulmonary diseases and their cures will increase
·        Our sense of security will be shifted
·        Our readiness to similar emergencies will change to the better in all the four corners of the world.
·        Adjustments will be made in all endeavors of life everywhere.
·        The world will synchronize more than ever before.
·        Christians will be more intense in end-times studies.
·        What about you personally?
o   Personally, I will plan the future differently.
o   I will keep seeking on how to be more independent.
o   I will be more in watch for the return of Jesus Christ.
o   I will seek to live even a simpler life than I am living now.
o   I will try to maintain the spiritual height that I have gained in the last couple weeks.
o   I will be more prompt to the leading of the Holy Spirit.
I pray that the wisdom gained in this brief would not fade away with the passing of this pandemic.
As we approach the return of Christ in the air, the momentum of hardships will increase to all the inhabitants of the world.
Just as the pandemic is casting fears all over the world right now, so is the weather, so is hunger, so is rumors of wars, so is refugee crisis, so is crime, so is hatred, so is racism, so is euthanasia, so is politics, and so is fraud.
To the Christians, the confinement is just a take home exam. Plenty of time is given and the exam is open book.
It’s time to open the Bible and enlighten ourselves concerning the meaning current affairs. Take advantage as an insider to make wiser investments of our time and energy for the highest return which will be recon for all eternity. 
Psaume 84:6-8)
6) Heureux ceux qui placent en toi leur appui! Ils trouvent dans leur cœur des chemins tout tracés.7) Lorsqu’ils traversent la vallée de Baca, Ils la transforment en un lieu plein de sources, Et la pluie la couvre aussi de bénédictions. 8) Leur force augmente pendant la marche, Et ils se présentent devant Dieu à Sion.
Psalm 84 : 5-7
5 Blessed is the man whose strength is in You, Whose heart is set on pilgrimage. 6 As they pass through the Valley of Baca, They make it a spring; The rain also covers it with pools. 7 They go from strength to strength; Each one appears before God in Zion.
·        As pilgrims on this earth on our way to the New Jerusalem, let us consider the confinement as the valley of Baca or the valley of destruction.
·        While the pilgrims had to travel through parched lands to make it to Jerusalem to the convocations, they began to draw wells by interval for them and their camels to find drinking waters.
·        The more wells they dug, the more the region became a fertile place and God usually sent rains to fill the pits with water as well.
·        The success of the journey became an encouragement to make it to Jerusalem.
·        The pilgrims gained strengths instead of becoming weary of the travel.
·        They were more eager and afresh in making it to the feasts as those who live within the city limit of Jerusalem.
·        Let this dry moment in history draw you closer to God.
·        May this new zeal that you develop during the pandemic carry you through the next trials that are coming your way!
·        Keep digging wells in the desert and change it to a fertile ground!
DARE TO EXCEL DURING THE COVID-19 CONFINEMENT
AMEN!    

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