- The Washington Times - Monday, June 20, 2005

The following are excerpts of a sermon given recently by the Rev. Harold Hammond at Shepherd’s Heart Charismatic Episcopal Church in Fairfax.

Take a minute and ask yourself this question: What is your life really all about? What are you living for, working for, hoping for?

Is it about your job? Your home? Your children? Is it about making money? So you can have a nice house? So you can wear nice clothes? So you can pay for college for your kids?

So your kids can grow up and live their lives the way you’re living yours?

So your children can grow up and work hard to have a nice house, a nice car, pay for health insurance, send their kids to a good college?

Does it thrill you to think of your children growing up to live like you live?

How would you live your life if it were not about you, not about your children, not about your job or house or car?

How would you live your life if it were truly about God?

This is what the Bible is all about.

The Book of Genesis tells the story of Abraham, a rich man whose family had lived in the land of Ur, (modern day Iraq), for many generations.

God said to him (in my words): “Abraham, your life is not about you. Your life is about me. Get out of here and leave all this behind.”

Abraham obeyed, and God blessed him.

How hard was it for him to leave his life behind, with all its comfort, security and pleasures, and walk into the wilderness, not knowing where he was going?

God blessed him and his children and his children’s children down to our own generation.

But his decision, like ours, is that we live our way or we live God’s way. We are the master of our own destiny — or God is. Jesus Christ is the Lord of our Life, or we are. He is our Shepherd, or we shepherd ourselves.

Here’s another story of a man called by God to make a radical change in his life:

Moses was raised in a king’s palace, a prince among princes. God told him to leave it all behind and go into the wilderness and take care of animals.

Moses, the prince of Egypt, spent many years in the desert taking care of a flock of sheep, leading them to lie down in green pastures, bringing them to drink in still waters, restoring them to health and strength and life.

Then God said (in my words): “It’s time, Moses, to fulfill my Call upon your life. I will make use of all that you have learned as prince of Egypt. I will use all that you have learned tending sheep for 40 years in the desert. Go and lead my people out of slavery and into the Promised Land.”

Moses could have stayed in Egypt and missed God’s call upon his life.

Abraham could have stayed in Ur and missed God’s call upon his life.

Is God calling you? How does He want you to live your life? These things are written out in the Bible. This is where you turn when God calls you to live for Him and not for yourself.

Let’s look at what Jesus, the Good Shepherd, has to say about food and clothes and all these things that seem so important to us: “Your heavenly Father knows that you need these things.” (Matthew 6:32)

“Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on.”

“Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?

“Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?

“Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? (i.e., Make himself grow 18 inches taller.)

“So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: They neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. (i.e., Solomon in his golden palaces was not clothed as beautifully as a little red flower that grows on the banks of the Sea of Galilee.)

“But seek ye first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” (Matthew 6:25-29)

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