Sermon Notes: I Made It… On Broken Pieces!

Oct 2, 2011   //   by Webmaster   //   Bishop Alfred Blue  //  Comments Off

Paul Shipwrecked on Malta

“When daylight came, they did not recognize the land, but they saw a bay with a sandy beach, where decided to run the ship aground if they could. Cutting loose the anchors, they left them in the sea and at the same time untied the ropes that held the rudders.  Then they hoisted the foresail to the wind and made for the beach. But the ship struck a sandbar and ran aground.  The bow stuck fast and would not move, and the stern was broken to pieces by the pounding of the surf. The soldiers planned to kill the prisoners to prevent any of them from swimming away and escaping.  But the centurion wanted to spare Paul’s life and kept them from carrying out their plan.  He ordered those who could swim to jump overboard first and get to land. The rest were to get there on planks or on pieces of the ship.  In this way everyone reached land in safety. (Acts 27:39-44)

“And when He had given thanks, He broke it, and said, take, eat; this is my body which is broken for you; this do in remembrance of Me.” (1 Corinthians 11:24)

“I Made It Here, On Broken Pieces”
Bishop-Designate Alfred D. Blue, Jr.
Sunday, October 2, 2011

Introduction

Being in the presence of God give us – in addition to forgiveness of our sins, and the grace we need for trying times, the opportunity to reflect on the journey that has brought each of us, to the place in life we now occupy.

Whether your individual journey took you to the highest & greatest experiences before you experienced adversity, or if you started on the bottom and are working your way up – the path our lives has taken is marked by signs that let us know God has been with us – on our journey through life.

When we hear broken, we usually think about things being torn apart; our lives, relationships & dreams shattered before us – too many broken pieces to try to put things back together again…

We correctly compare ourselves with those that need for God to mend us, and although no one wants brokenness to define what we may have experienced in our lives, sometimes, that’s where our journey takes us.

“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings to the meek; He hath sent me to bind up the broken-hearted…” (Isaiah 61:1)

Jesus, declaring His purpose on the earth, declares

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because He hath anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He hath sent Me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind…” (Luke 4:18)

 And God’s anointing – according to Isaiah 61, and Luke 4:18 “heals the broken hearted” – and binds up our wounds.”  When we sin against God, the bible teaches us that “…a broken and contrite heart, enables us to be forgiven and restored…

And like Jonah, who ran away from the purpose God had for his life – sometimes things around us fall apart – get broken to pieces; and that becomes a “turning point” and we realize that God does have a special purpose for my life…

What Is Powerful in biblical history, and in life for so many today – is the fact that when things our lives get off course, and things around us begin to fall apart; God’s hand upon our lives becomes even more obvious; more powerful & significant than ever…

 

When God is at work in your life, redeeming you from past issues & struggles; He protects you while you work your way through the storm you’re in…

 

He positions people around you – whose sole interest is making sure you get there – whatever “there” means for you.

 

Getting There:

 

For some – “getting there” is about breaking free from your old lifestyle – behavior & habits that were negative & controlling influences;

 

For others:  “getting there” – means that you haven’t lost sight of the vision God deposited in your spirit, even though there have been many detours along the way;

 

There are even some:  whose lives have been turned upside downyou had a shipwreck – a complete disaster in your life; but you knew that somehow, God would “get you there”!

 

This confidence – that God will be with you – no matter how rough the waters get – even when things are falling apart around me is strong and powerful in your life, when you know that you’ve gotten this far in life (marriage/business/ministry) by the grace of God!

 

Text:

 

When Paul was place on this ship headed for Rome – he knew that this part of his life and ministry was being directed by the sovereign will of God.

 

Acts 21:10-11 tells of a prophecy Paul received, saying that if he went to Jerusalem, he would become a prisoner, then be turned over to the same Roman government that crucified Jesus…

 

His friends pleaded with him not to go, but Paul knew that it was his assignment – and he knew that God would be with him, no matter what he experienced.

 

The Word of the prophet was clear and accurate – but it didn’t change Paul’s assignment from God.  For Paul, being a prisoner, and sacrificing his life was a sacrifice he was willing to make, for the glory of God.

 

Seven days later, he was dragged out of the temple by a mob determined to kill him…  He was arrested by Roman soldiers shortly thereafter –

He had the audacity to demand an audience with the ruler of the Roman Gov’t – knowing that his life could very well be at stake…

That appointment, to meet with Augustus Ceasar – was what got him in the boat!!

This appointment was sanctioned by God; the Lord surrounded Paul with protectors; those who would show him favor, and ensure that he reached his destination…

As a direct result of God’s assignment on Paul’s life – everyone that journeyed with him fell under God’s divine protection…  275 people made it through a hurricane, 2 weeks without food, and the ship crashing offshore in dangerous waters…

There were some that were able to swim to shore; there were others that climbed on top of the broken pieces of the ship.

Paul made it to Rome – he stood before Ceasar; he shared the death & resurrection of Christ – he touched a leader and made a difference.  He spent the rest of his life in prison, and was executed by crucifixion…

That was his destination – to follow Christ, and to give his life for the sake of the gospel…

He didn’t get there with a parade of supporters; in his path were critics and detractors;

But by faith & obedience – he won the hearts of men everywhere; he raised up leaders that would carry on the ministry and message – and by the Holy Spirit’s help, wrote two thirds of the new testament writings that give humanity God’s blueprint for life.

He was one of them – that got to shore on the broken pieces of the ship…

He realized that God’s grace gets you there – through the storms that take us off of our course;

He understood that when God gives you an assignment —  He’s with you; He keeps you – He protects & provides…

And even if/when your life is shattered into a thousand pieces; God will use what broke down in and around your life, to get you where you were destined to be.

Paul wrote the verses in 1 Corinthians 11:24, that remind us that the sacrifice of Jesus was made –
He was broken – before man, by the authorities of this world – so that we could get to our purpose…

When God made covenant with Abraham (Gen 15) – He walked between the broken pieces of Abraham’s sacrifice.

When God sends you on your journey – He knows there is opposition; He knows that the enemy my bind you up along the way…

He knows that things may go helter-skelter, that you may shipwreck – that your life/family – the dreams of your career may be broken today – but He has purposed that you “get there” – and if necessary – the broken pieces of your life – will serve as the liferaft that brings you to the shore where your real purpose awaits you.

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