Big, Ugly Buts

This past Sunday night at Palmetto Gatherings we talked about how we all have big, buts.  It’s true.  I used the video below to kick off the discussion.  Give it a watch first.

I bet you have an ugly but. Like me you could have more than one.

In fact, my buts are ugly.

As I told the group Sunday night, I believe God has called Michelle and me to be a part of launching this house church network – Palmetto Gatherings.  Through the whole process I have come up with a bunch of buts, especially as I dig further into the details.

But I don’t know what I’m doing.

But I’m not a pastor.

But I’m just a regular guy.

But how will we decide <fill in the blank>?

But there are other people that could / would do this a whole lot better.

But I’m afraid I will do something wrong as we determine the structure, by-laws, etc.

But, but, but…

Thankfully, I’m not alone.

But Moses protested again, “What if they won’t believe me or listen to me? What if they say, ‘The Lord never appeared to you’?”

Exodus 4:1 (NLT)

Even Jesus had to deal with buts:

Another said, “Yes, Lord, I will follow you, but first let me say good-bye to my family.”
But Jesus told him, “Anyone who puts a hand to the plow and then looks back is not fit for the Kingdom of God.”

Luke 9:59-62 (NLT)

And:

But they all began making excuses. One said, ‘I have just bought a field and must inspect it. Please excuse me.’  Another said, ‘I have just bought five pairs of oxen, and I want to try them out. Please excuse me.’  Another said, ‘I now have a wife, so I can’t come.’
Luke 14:18-20 (NLT)

I believe our buts demonstrate where our faith is weak and our buts stink to God.  He has promised us so much more and we believe so much less.  We choose to believe so much less and offer our buts, our excuses to God.

With our buts we are saying,

“Yes, God, I hear what you are saying or what your plan is…BUT I have a better idea/plan/thought.”

or

“I know what You asked me to do God, BUT I have these things going on in my life, or these limitations that You don’t know about.”

Really?

Instead of showing our buts to God, we should step out in faith and internalize what He has promised us.

As an example, Craig Groeschel spoke about a Greek word in a recent sermon: ὑπερνικάω – hupernikao which means to overwhelming conquer.

This word only appears ONE time in the entire New Testament when Paul uses it in his letter to the Romans.  Paul used other words for victory in other letters, but in this one letter he goes beyond victory.  He uses this word which means to overwhelming conquer.

No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.

Romans 8:37 (NLT)

We can drop our buts.  No matter what we face.  No matter how overwhelming the situation is, overwhelming victory is ours – through Christ. If we have a relationship with Him, we can experience that victory and be an overwhelming conqueror.

In his letter to the Philippians, Paul reminds us of one key thing – prayer.

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:6-7 (NLT)

We should pray about everything….including our ugly buts. We should tell God what we need and thank Him for what He has done.  Thanking is key.  In this thankfulness we are reminded of God’s faithfulness and our dependence.

So, I guess we need to work on shrinking our buts.

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