Step Up to the Plate

Harbor pastors

6-17-12

 

Pastor Sam Inman

I’m going to talk to you about leading today. How to lead, period. There are great and terrible leaders.  The great ones are successfully leading people toward truth and goodness and the terrible ones are misleading people away from truth and goodness. The ones in between aren’t really leading. There are men with charisma who can gather a crowd but they’re not going anywhere. They’re entertainers. Others have authority to make people follow the rules and they aren’t leaders. They are just governors.

            Becoming a Leader begins with setting your mind on something.  Margaret Thatcher said,

Winning is a habit. Watch your thoughts, they become your beliefs. Watch your beliefs, they become your words. Watch your words, they become your actions. Watch your actions, they become your habits. Watch your habits, they become your character. And watch your character, it becomes your destiny.

What do you think? No really what do you think about? Be careful that is what you will become ten years from now.  So make sure you have a deep conviction about what is right and the set your will on it like a stone that can’t be moved.  Then you will be a leader. Your thoughts will not be able to contain themselves because the truth can’t be contained. Because your words do not lack conviction you won’t be able to prevent yourself from moving to action and once you have acted your momentum will carry you like a rolling boulder to keep acting and those actions will leave a path that defines your character and points toward your destiny.

I remember my first experience coaching. It was a coed kindergarten soccer team.  I knew soccer but new nothing about teaching it to children. The first practice was just trying to keep everyone on the field. I had no idea that I was going to have to teach them what lines are. Then once I did little jimmy just wanted to run on the lines all the time. Then there was Amanda.  She fell down every two minutes during the first practice.  She truly thought she could not go on every two minutes.  I told her to get up and encouraged her to go on. I had nothing to do with the soccer rules or instructions how to play.  It had everything to do with the power of her will.  It had the power to pull her down into the ground 10 times in that first practice.  After some retraining she learned to set her sights on winning.  I remember seeing the change in her.  First the complaining stopped, the falling stopped. She became the most valuable player on the team not just for her defense and ability to score but because of her influence on the other players. 

You have only two options: serve the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength (Duet. 6.5) or You can serve money. “No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money (Matthew 6.24).” So do what Joshua challenge his people to do.

14 “Now fear the Lord and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your ancestors worshiped beyond the Euphrates River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord. 15 But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”(Joshua 24.14-15)

Your idol may not be money.  That is just a really common one because it’s so easy to love without realizing it. Recognition can be an idol. I used to think the most important thing was to be someone great and influential.  Be careful not to take any of God’s glory away from him. Recognition is wonderful as long as you stay humble and recognize that God is the one leading you.

Today I challenge you to lead your family dads.  Think less about how your coworkers think about you. What your family believes about you is more important. And what God says about you. That is crucial.  If you can let some of God’s thoughts about your permeate and leak into your thoughts, pretty soon they will be God believes, God actions, God habits, God character, and God destiny.  I see where you’re at dad. Right now you are just trying to keep your son interested in school and keep your daughter from fighting with the other girls. You have some big problems too that you try not to think about too much. In order to lead you’re going to have to start by leading your own self.  Tell yourself. I am going to serve.  I am going to serve the Lord. We are going to serve the Lord.  That’s right. 

14 “Now fear the Lord and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your ancestors worshiped beyond the Euphrates River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord. 15 But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”(Joshua 24.14-15)

 

Pastor Ron Macciola 

 

Contact hitters in the second hole are there to move the base runners forward. They may bunt, or sacrifice to move the runner into scoring position. They serve the team. Godly fathers are not always home run heroes, but they are great servants. What does a father servant look like?

He is HUMBLE.  Imagine that word “humble” in your mind. The

H stands for Heart – It means spirit, courage or enthusiasm. In 1st Samuel 30:6, David encouraged himself in the Lord. There will be times, Dad that your primary encouragement must come from the Lord

U means Understand – It takes time to be a dad. Time to listen and time to pray. Time to cry, time to rejoice, and time to reap the benefits.

People ask me, how many sons do you have? And I lift my hand up and show my 5 fingers: I usually say, “Someone is always on the top of their game, someone is always on the bottom and 3 are in the middle. That changes from day to day. Right now, by the grace of God, they are all on the batting schedule and batting 500.

M stands for Mentor – A father servant teaches  as each moment becomes available, doesn’t let that moment escape. It becomes Sunday School in a second. There have been times when my sons have come to me and said,” Hey, Dad or Hey, Pops, Do you have a minute?” That’s our green light, Dads; mute the TV, put the iPad away, take the earbuds out… put the salami sandwich down and be a mentor.

stands for Believes – As a father servant, it takes great faith to see your children through. Faith to know that God, who began a good work in your children, will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ. “Until the day” may take a lifetime, so hang in there. Prayer is partnered with belief.

The admonition in 1st Thess. 5:17 says it well, Pray without ceasing…when you eat, when you walk, before you sleep, as you drive (keep your eyes open), when you’re happy, when you’re sad, at the gym or at work. Remember, the prayer of a righteous father counts for much – it goes a long way.

L stands for Loves – 1st John 3:1 says, “Behold what manner of love the Father has given unto us that we should be called the sons of God.”  

WUEST Word Studies says, “The love of God is foreign to the human race. It is not found naturally in humanity. When it exists there, it is in a saved individual and by reason of the ministry of the Holy Spirit. God has placed his love upon the saints in the sense that they have become the permanent objects of His love. One of the results of this love in action is that we are called sons of God. The purpose of this amazing gift: a wise, holy love, concern for our highest good, not simply that we may be saved from suffering and loss, but in order that we may be styled children of God. And we have not only the name but the character.”

stands for Encouragement – a father servant is a wonderful coach. Directing, supervising, overseeing and managing our children. It includes having a Heart, Understanding, Mentoring, Believing and Loving. Being known as an encourager will be a lasting legacy in your family’s life.

Jesus can do anything in our families, but in the economy of God, we must supply the loaves we have before He will provide the dinner we need. (Calvin Miller

 

Pastor Dave Chiolero

 

We want our kids to trust us. They trust us because of consistent/reliable behavior. Our ability to stay consistent is because we believe in something. This dependability brings safety/trust to our kids.

Genesis 22:1-2

Some time later God tested Abraham. He said to him, “Abraham!”  “Here I am,” he replied.

Then God said, “Take your son , your only son, whom you love—Isaac—and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on a mountain I will show you. ”

I have a friend who told me he got laid-off from work last week unexpectedly. Have you ever been blind-sided? Your future suddenly becomes dark. Abraham was blind-sided.

How would Gods promise happen without Isaac? Abraham had one thing to hold onto - the promise from his heavenly father who was totally dependable.

Isaac saw the confidence and trust his dad put in God and this made Isaac willing to trust God too.

Dads, one of the best gifts you can give your children is to fully trust in the promises of your heavenly father.

Your consistent dependence on God, even when the future is dark, will provide safety for your children and teach them to rely on God also.

 

Pastor Terry Inman

The clean up hitter is the team’s power hitter. He is talented. He can knock it out of the park and if the bases are loaded it’s a grand slam. Godly Fathers are very capable; God has given them extra-ordinary talents to lead their family to victory.

My grandson Ethan and I had the honor of interviewing Jeremy Affeldt one of the Giant’s relief pitchers on Wednesday. We stayed for the game. We got to hang out on the field for a couple hours before. Ethan got a few photos and autographs then we went crazy watching the giants first ever perfect game. Matt Cain is one of Jeremy’s best friends.

Click here to watch an exclusive interview with Jeremy Affeldt

In 1 Chronicles 26 there is a genealogy of Gatekeepers. They were the guardians and concierges at the magnificent temple doors. They came from the clans of Levi. There is a brief description given to some of the descendants of Obed-edom.

He was the gatekeeper famous for hosting the ark on the covenant in his home when David was attempting to get it back to the temple. The Ark of the Covenant represented the powerful presence of God. Pure and holy people were the only ones fit or capable of handling it. Some guys were killed for mishandling it when it was in transit.

1 Chron. 26.6 says “God blessed Obed-edom” and then mentions Shemaiah His firstborn and his family. (shemiah)

“His son Shemaiah also had sons, who were leaders in their father’s family because they were very capable men. All these were descendants of Obed-edom; they and their sons and their relatives were capable men with the strength to do the work.” 

Now we don’t know what all was involved in their occupation. But they were “very capable men” and they had the “strength” for their work. The classic Kings James Version of the bible says they were “men of valor”.

They were capable and courageous! These guys were heroes. I think Godly dads should be their kid’s heroes! I also think their primary job is to make heroes out of their kids! I love what Jeremy Affelt said, “I don’t want to be known for my talent at a professional pitcher but a good husband, good dad and devoted follower of Jesus Christ.”

Let me ask you, whether you’re a dad, mom, son or daughter what do you want to be known for? God has given all of us talent. We all have gifts. What are we doing with it?

Are we capable of hosting the presence of God? Our Father has given us the gift of life in his son. He has given us his Spirit and his gifts. He wants to be proud of us. What are you doing to make our heavenly dad glad?