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Coming to our senses: how to find purpose, community and salvation in Jesus

19/02/2023 - Matt Destry

What are the ‘senses’ that tell you that you’re home?

What are the ‘senses’ that tell you that you’re lost?

Poem: September 1, 1939 – WH Auden

Faces along the bar
Cling to their average day:
The lights must never go out,
The music must always play,
All the conventions conspire
To make this fort assume
The furniture of home;
Lest we should see where we are,
Lost in a haunted wood,
Children afraid of the night
Who have never been happy or good.

Big story: a study in getting lost

Luke 15:11-32

Cutting ties

Lack of personal discipline

Lack of internal resources

Questionable relationships

And then, something incredible happens:

Coming to our senses

“When Israel is reduced to the carob-tree, they become repentant.”

The running father

Who draws near to me (God) an inch, I will draw near to him an ell; and whoso walks to meet me, I will leap to meet him.”

Homecoming

What to do now:

1/ Be found in Christ

Then he said to me, “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. Behold, they say, ‘Our bones are dried up, and our hope is lost; we are indeed cut off.’ 12 Therefore prophesy, and say to them, Thus says the Lord God: Behold, I will open your graves and raise you from your graves, O my people. And I will bring you into the land of Israel. 13 And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves, and raise you from your graves, O my people.

Ezekiel 37:11-13

2/ Be found in celebration

And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, 25 not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. Hebrews 10:24-25

3/ Be found in vocation

Thus says the Lord:
“Stand by the roads, and look,
and ask for the ancient paths,
where the good way is; and walk in it,
and find rest for your souls.
But they said, ‘We will not walk in it.’

Jeremiah 6:16

Questions for groups:

How do you know when you’re lost? Who (or what) gives you this feedback?

Where have you ‘cut ties’ that need to be repaired?

How might you replace motivation with discipline when moving towards a noble goal?

How might I be able to further integrate my faith with my vocation?

Where is God for you right now?

So, how do we come to our senses, and  how do we to find purpose, community and salvation in Jesus?

It starts by turning around, and it ends by seeing God run toward us