I'm Trying to Tell You Something (Cornerstone)
Mar 29, 2015 - Rev Paul Rasmussen
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When have you tried to tell someone something but they wouldn't listen? How did you feel?
When has someone tried to tell you something but you wouldn't listen? Why wouldn't you listen?
When have you said, "I will never do that" and you ended up doing it?
What do you learn about God in Mark 14:27-31? Can you identify with Peter? In what ways?
This week we wrapped up our sermon series, Mark. Over the past few weeks we have been journeying through the Gospel of Mark, looking at different snapshots of Jesus' life.
Rev. Paul Rasmussen finished up the series by focusing on a time when Jesus tried to tell his disciple, Peter, something but Peter wouldn't listen.
We can likely think of a time (or many times!) when people tried to tell us something but -- for whatever reason -- we wouldn't listen. Paul observed that we may mistakenly believe that we are the most accurate assessor of ourselves, and therefore, we discount the assessments others make of us. Sometimes we may flatter ourselves too much to detect our own shortcomings and sin. We may be overconfident.
Re-read Mark 14:27-31. In this passage, Jesus tells his disciples that they are all going to desert him. Peter tells Jesus that, no matter what, he will not desert him. Peter is overly confident. Jesus tells Peter that even he will stray. Jesus is trying to tell Peter something but Peter won't listen. Peter ends up doing exactly what he says he would never do. Paul pointed out that Peter's behavior highlights the tendency that the more adamant you are about being right, the more likely it is that you may be wrong.
To try to prevent over-confidence and to help hear what others may be trying to tell us, Paul suggested three action items:
1. Pray. Ask God to show you what you cannot see yourself. Check out Psalm 139:23-24 -- this is a great starting point for this prayer.
2. Listen to others. God often works through and speaks to us through others. When people say you have a problem, listen. We must listen to life-giving rebuke. (Paul pointed out that there are also situations when we must give a life-giving rebuke).
3. Change. Once your eyes are open to the problem, you must change -- even if the necessary steps to change seem overwhelming and incredibly challenging. If you need help in making whatever change you need to make, don't hesitate to reach out to HPUMC. We have many resources that may be able to help and I am more than happy to help connect you with the appropriate resource. Your church is always here for you.
This week is a special and solemn week in the life of the Christian church -- it is Holy Week. This week we remember the dark and grueling days of Jesus' life leading up to his glorious resurrection on Easter Sunday. We have lots of opportunities for reflection and worship this week. As part of your preparation for Easter, I hope you will join us for Holy Week services.
I look forward to celebrating Easter with you this Sunday -- be sure to invite a friend (or two!)
Blessings and peace in Christ,
Associate Pastor, Cornerstone