What’s Your Story? – 6/23/19 PM

What’s Your Story?

2 Corinthians 3:2 Ye are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read of all men:

 

Intro: The context of this passage is Paul’s defense of his authority and his ministry.

There were some in the church of Corinth that questioned Paul’s authority to teach/rebuke/write letters.

He defended his right throughout the book.

He insisted that there was no need for people to seek additional validation of his authority.

He scoffed at the hypothetical need for a letter of commendation from other churches.

He insisted that their life was all the proof anyone needed that God had sent them to Corinth.

Paul’s consensus was that instead of commendations of ink and paper, they had the evidence of the working of the Holy Spirit in their hearts of flesh.

 

I. The RecordYe are our epistle written in our hearts…

Whether you realize it or not, those that have invested in your life long to see you succeed as a Christian.

The day you began your journey with Jesus Christ, other people invested in you.

Whether you realize it or not, you became an epistle written in their heart.

Your story became an epistle written in the heart of your Sunday School teacher.

Your life became an epistle written in the hearts of your bus ministry workers.

Your life intersected with others in a way that is impossible to explain.

As a soulwinner, and as a pastor, I have invested in the lives of thousands of people.

  • I took a piece of me and gave it to them.
  • They took a piece of them and gave it to me.
  • They were a burden on my heart.
  • They were a prayer on my heart.
  • They were a hope in my heart.
  • They were a dream in my heart.
  • I had high hopes for them.
  • I had big ambitions for them.
  • I longed to see them grow and learn to become a warrior in the army of God.
  • Whether they knew it or not, they were an epistle written in my heart.

 

You are an epistle written in the hearts of every person that has ever prayed for you.

You are an epistle written in the hearts of every person that has ever preached to you.

You are an epistle written in the hearts of every person that has ever taught you.

You are an epistle written in the hearts of every person that has ever encouraged you.

The Apostle Paul referenced this unusual relationship in multiple places. Here are just a few:

II Corinthians 12

  • 14 Behold, the third time I am ready to come to you; and I will not be burdensome to you: for I seek not yours, but you: for the children ought not to lay up for the parents, but the parents for the children.
  • 15 And I will very gladly spend and be spent for you; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I be loved.

I Thessalonians 2

  • 7 But we were gentle among you, even as a nurse cherisheth her children:
  • 8 So being affectionately desirous of you, we were willing to have imparted unto you, not the gospel of God only, but also our own souls, because ye were dear unto us.

Your life has been written – not with pen and paper, but in the hearts of people.

Paul referred to those in his life often and by name.

He wasn’t shy about naming names. The ones that blessed him and the ones that burdened him.

Some were a blessing and some were a burden.

Some brought joy and some brought anger.

Some were a source of fellowship and others were a source of frustration.

 

II. The Reputationknown…of all men.

Your story is known. So…What’s Your Story?

I am not trying to be mean. I’m trying to motivate.

I am not trying to scare you. I am trying to sober you.

Your story is known.

People many times are intimidated by the fact that people are “judging” them.

Jesus not only taught his disciples that they would be judged, but to expect it.

  • Matthew 5:16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

Matthew 7

  • 17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
  • 18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
  • 19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
  • 20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.

Illustration:

I Samuel 16

  • 17 And Saul said unto his servants, Provide me now a man that can play well, and bring him to me.
  • 18 Then answered one of the servants, and said, Behold, I have seen a son of Jesse the Bethlehemite, that is cunning in playing, and a mighty valiant man, and a man of war, and prudent in matters, and a comely person, and the LORD is with him.

David had a reputation, and had done nothing of any significance as of yet…

But someone was watching. One of the servants said I HAVE SEEN.

 

III. The Readingread of all men:

READ: to distinguish between, to recognize, to know accurately, to acknowledge; to read

Known and Read are progressive.

Your story has started, but it’s not over.

You – and ONLY you can determine what your story is.

Not your parents.

Not your spouse.

Not your family.

Not your children.

You, and only you.

 

Conclusion:

Your life has been written – not with pen and paper, but in the hearts of people.

What’s your story?

The Spirit of the living God is writing YOUR story in the fleshly tables of people hearts.

What’s your story?

If your life was in a library, where would it be found?

What genre is your life’s story?

Is it a fiction novel?

Is it a horror story?

Is it in the inspirational story section?