What can I do?
(as an elderly person)

by Johan du Preez
(Roodepoort, South Africa)

Good morning friends in Christ,
I greet you in the wonderful name of Jesus Christ, our Savior.

Shall we pray:
Lord God, our Creator, provider and Father, Jesus our Rock, Redeemer and Savior, Holy Spirit, our Helper, this morning we join as a family in your wonderful name. You have called us into your presence, You are in our hearts and we thank you for being able to call You our Father and awesome God.

As we hear Your Word this morning Lord, we ask that You would give us understanding of Your Word and the message that you have for us. You tell us that You are not done with us, You have plans for us and you love us. You will never leave us nor forsake us.

We don’t fully understand your love, but we read in your word that you loved us whilst we were still sinners, You loved us first …..
We thank You that Your word tells us in Psalm 46 that You are our refuge and strength and a help in trouble. Thank you for his beautiful day that you have added to our lives. Thank you for the opportunities that you grant us to share your word, peace, love and Goodness.

So we ask your blessing on this sermon this morning
And we ask this through the wonderful name of Jesus Christ

As I wrestled with God for a message for us this morning, He provided two different readings today from His Word.
Matthew 7:7-8 and 1 John 5:14-15,
Before we read His Word, shall we pray?
Lord God, may the words from our lips and the meditations from our hearts be acceptable to Your sight this morning

God created us with a purpose in mind and even though we might at times think or get the idea that there is no more purpose, we read in Romans “we are enabled to fulfill the purpose for which we are called.“
God is not yet finished with us, and He says, “Call on Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.

What then is our purpose? What can we as Christians do? Can we still make a difference at all? And what great and mighty things can we do?
So let us start with what God tells us in Matthew 7:7-8:
Ask, and it will be given to you. Seek, and you will find. Knock, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and he who seeks, finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.

1 John 5:14-15 says:
And this is our confidence, that if we pray according to His will, He will hear us, and give us what we ask for, because our desires are in agreement with His thoughts for us.

God says that we are to ask and it will be given. We should seek and we will find, we should knock and the door will be opened for us, all of this will happen to us, if this is done within His will and within His thoughts for us.
What then can we ask for?

We think about Abraham, who, after he received the blessings from God, asked God to spare Sodom. He intercedes for this wicked city, filled with wicked and perverted people. The wonderful thing is that God not only agrees, but also negotiates with Abraham.

Although His fury burns against these wicked people, He allows Abraham to “negotiate” a deal for Sodom. You see, God allows for Christians and God fearing people to intercede for others. We can pray for God’s grace and His Mercy on others.
If we think of the world that we live in today, it is not very far removed from the Sodom of old.

These days almost anything is accepted by society and God does not feature in a lot of places anymore. We think of toddlers growing up, in their formative years, the first seven years of their lives, with parents who do not tell them about Jesus.

We think of schools, where Jesus and God are banned, parents who no longer go to church anymore and as a result children never hear about God anymore. The laws of our country, the ever increasing pressures to be religiously correct and not to offend anyone. People just do not fear God anymore.

If there is no God, there are no rules and no hell or heaven, so people can do whatever they want to do and they are convinced that there will be no consequences.
You might wonder, Johan, where are you going with this and what exactly can I do?

At Discovery Methodist, there are also a lot of elderly folks, who have been closely walking with God for many, many years. They have, just like you, been reading God’s Word and have been intimately talking with Jesus for many years. We encouraged them to pray for the youth of the church, to intercede for our church as a family and to ask God to help us to bring about a revival in our community.

Over time a revival is taking place and the youth is slowly, but surely starting to come back to the church. We have a fun evening on Friday nights at our church and of the 30 children that regularly attend the fun evenings only 4 are regularly coming to Sunday school and church. The others do not come to church and their parents don’t either…. But we continue to pray that they will all come to church …..

So, this morning I remind you that you have God’s promise that He will listen to you and will answer your prayers, if it is within His will.
I’m sure you will agree that He would want:
• More people in His Family,
• More people spreading His Good News
• More people becoming more like Jesus
• More people caring and loving others

I therefore ask you to intercede for others, I ask you to pray for:
Children who do not know God and Jesus.
Parents who do not believe, or just gave up on the church
Schools and Sunday schools, so that God’s Word will be heard by more children.

Because in this world that seems to focus only on material things, we can know that the only thing or things that we can take to heaven with us, would be the souls that we pointed in the right direction and prayed for here on earth.

Shall we pray?
Lord God, this morning we ask Your wonderful blessings of joy and peace throughout the joyous celebration of your birthday over this festive Christmas season. We know that the date on which we celebrate might not be totally correct, but happy birthday Lord Jesus….

We pray this morning for all children of this world, in all countries in this world, who do not hear Your Good news of salvation. We pray for parents and grandparents, Lord open their minds, hearts and mouths to proclaim You as King of Kings and the Savior of mankind.

We pray that all mankind would turn or return to fellowship and to You. To turn from their wicked ways and to truly believe, to experience your Joy, Your peace, Your Hope and most of all Your Love.

We pray this morning for all Christians, to be bold enough to speak to others about You, as You commanded us. We pray for church leaders and we ask your blessing on the government. We pray especially for the sick, the lonely and those who have lost all hope. Renew our strength, give us joy, peace and hearts full of love for all other people, being part of your creation.

We ask that you will richly bless each and every person here as well as their respective families.
We ask all of this in the mighty and yet loving name of Jesus Christ

Benediction: May The Lord bless you and keep you.May the Lord make his face to shine upon you, and be gracious to you.
May the Lord lift up his countenance upon you, and give you peace.

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