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TITLE: Don't Order Vanilla, I
TEXT: Ephesians 3:17-21
PROPOSITION: God offers us far more choices than we seek.
KEY WORD: Choices


  1. Baskin-Robbins 31 flavors - same price, wonderful flavors available - DON'T ORDER VANILLA!
  2. Mundane, mediocre, average, normal, ordinary
  3. Don't settle for plain vanilla prayers.
  4. "I'm an average Christian." AIN'T NO SUCH THING.


I. Matthew 7:7-11 Ask and ye shall receive

II. Mark 11:24 (NASB) Believe you already have them.

  1. Desire, have a need, request of God?
  2. Pray - but pray believing
  3. Believe that God has already answered it
  4. It will be yours.
  5. a. Ill. of faith healer. "I didn't think so."

    b. "O ye of little faith."

  6. Matt. 6:8 God is already at work, knows our needs
  7. The Fig Tree of Prayer

a. Jesus cursed fig tree; it died; Peter shocked

b. Force = move mountains (23)

c. Faith = already have it (24)

d. Forgiveness = required to be forgiven (25-26)

III. James 1:5; 5:16 Wisdom, heal sick

IV. Matthew 21:21-22 Move mountains

  1. Mountains = obstacle, barrier to your service, work for God.
  2. Through prayer, those barricades can be moved, and doors opened.

V. Hebrews 4:16 Come boldly

VI. I John 5:14-15

1. Confidence, God hears us

2. Faith, God answers prayer

Conclusion: Let's pray BIG prayers and have the faith for BIGGER results from God.

Put your faith to the test.


TITLE: Don't Order Vanilla, II
TEXT: Ephesians 3:17-21
: God offers us far more choices than we seek.
KEY WORD: Choices
: Same

INTRODUCTION:The Far Side - wife says, "I want you to be more assertive. I'm tired of everyone calling you Alexander the Pretty Good."

  1. In worship - Don't choose vanilla!



I. Singing

  1. Learn new songs
  2. Shake the rafters off the building
  3. Spirit and understanding (I Cor. 14:15)

II. Prayers

  1. We have puny prayers from puny faith.
  2. Challenge: Let's "out-ask" God.
  3. Ephesians 3:20 Above all that we ask or think
  4. Pious platitudes, vain repitions = vanilla

III. Lord's Supper

  1. "Do this in rememberance of me."
  2. Discern the Lord's body
  3. Not habit, routine

IV. Sermons and Bible Classes

  1. Alive, "Icicles in pews, polar bear in pulpit."
  2. Sermonettes are delivered to Christianettes.
  3. No preacher has the right to bore you to death.
  4. Meeting preachers should be more dynamic than the local men.
  5. Gospel? yes Truth? yes Power to motivate? NO!

V. Giving

  1. Have elders begging us to stop.
  2. Cheerfully, happy, with joy
  3. No more - leftovers for God, OK?


TITLE: Don't Order Vanilla, III
TEXT: Ephesians 3:17-21
PROPOSITION: God offers us far more choices than we seek.
KEY WORD: Choices


1. This is the third part of the series.

2. Use your talents.

3. Do the best you can, with what you have, where you are, as you have opportunity.

4. Don't order vanilla in your service to God.



I. Programs and work of the church

Many think they have to be in every program. a. Better to do ONE thing well

b. "Jack of all trades, Master of none."

  1. Pick where you can serve best - DO THAT!
  2. James 4:17
    1. Does this mean I must do everything I think of?
    2. Think of it & don't do it = sin?
    3. Real issue "How Can I Best Serve God Today?"
    4. List 100 things to do
    5. Do 15 of them.
    6. Did you sin in NOT doing the 85 others?
    7. Do 99 - but not the 1 that is urgent = sin.

II. Where there is no established program in place

  1. Start working.
  2. Get two or three others to work with you.
  3. Others will start "begging" to participate.
  4. Start the ball rolling - others will jump on.

III. Individual responsibility

  1. When you see a need - -
  2. a. Meet that need.

    b. Don't call benevolence

  3. Gal. 6:10 Opportunity to do good - do it
  4. Gal. 6:2 Bear one another's burdens

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