SoulRefresh: Longing for God

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Sermon Notes

“We will repeat what we don’t repair.” 

  • We each need a SoulRefresh with our relationship with God. 

  • We need SoulRefresh with our relationship with one another as the Body of Christ called Gateway Church. 

  • We need a SoulRefresh around our life purpose. 

Psalm 42 &43 
As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God? (say longing) My tears have been my food day and night, while people say to me all day long, “Where is your God?” These things I remember as I pour out my soul: how I used to go to the house of God under the protection of the Mighty One with shouts of joy and praise among the festive throng. Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God. My soul is downcast within me; therefore, I will remember you from the land of the Jordan, the heights of Hermon—from Mount Mizar. Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls; all your waves and breakers have swept over me. By day the Lord directs his love, at night his song is with me—a prayer to the God of my life. I say to God my Rock, “Why have you forgotten me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy?” 10 My bones suffer mortal agony as my foes taunt me, saying to me all day long, “Where is your God?” 11 Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.

Psalm 43
Vindicate me, my God, and plead my cause against an unfaithful nation. Rescue me from those who are deceitful and wicked. You are God my stronghold. Why have you rejected me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy? 3 Send me your light and your faithful care, let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell. 4 Then I will go to the altar of God, to God, my joy and my delight. I will praise you with the lyre, O God, my God. Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.

How do you SoulRefresh in a hard season or after a hard season according to Psalm 42 & 43

  1. Overshadow your longing for relief with a longing for God.

  2. Remember the “Good ole days” and Repeat them. 

  3. Renew your own hope. 

Faith isn’t talking yourself into a good mood – it’s talking yourself out of the lies of the enemy. 

The Psalmist ends both 42 & 43 with this declaration…

 Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God. 

He is asking himself, “With a God like that why am I feeling like this?”

Fasting Facts

  • Fasting is refraining from physical food for a spiritual purpose 

  • Fasting enlarges our spiritual capacity for God

  • Fasting turns a physical hunger into a spiritual hunger

  • Fasting was an OT and NT spiritual practice. 

  • Fasting isn’t primarily about recipes it’s about relationship & results. 

Do you want more of God?” 

Fact: There is always more of God available than what we are currently experiencing. 

Fact: God always responds to our longing. 

  • Jeremiah 29:13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.

  • James 4:8a “Come near to God and He will come near to you.” 

  • Matthew 5:6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.

Daniel 1:1-15
In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came to Jerusalem and besieged it. And the Lord delivered Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand, along with some of the articles from the temple of God. These he carried off to the temple of his god in Babylonia and put in the treasure house of his god. Then the king ordered Ashpenaz, chief of his court officials, to bring into the king’s service some of the Israelites from the royal family and the nobility— young men without any physical defect, handsome, showing aptitude for every kind of learning, well informed, quick to understand, and qualified to serve in the king’s palace. He was to teach them the language and literature of the BabyloniansThe king assigned them a daily amount of food and wine from the king’s table. They were to be trained for three years, and after that they were to enter the king’s service. Among those who were chosen were some from Judah: Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah. The chief official gave them new names: to Daniel, the name Belteshazzar; to Hananiah, Shadrach; to Mishael, Meshach; and to Azariah, Abednego. But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the royal food and wine, and he asked the chief official for permission not to defile himself this way. Now God had caused the official to show favor and compassion to Daniel, 10 but the official told Daniel, “I am afraid of my lord the king, who has assigned your food and drink. Why should he see you looking worse than the other young men your age? The king would then have my head because of you.” 11 Daniel then said to the guard whom the chief official had appointed over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah, 12 “Please test your servants for ten days: Give us nothing but vegetables to eat and water to drink. 13 Then compare our appearance with that of the young men who eat the royal food, and treat your servants in accordance with what you see.” 14 So he agreed to this and tested them for ten days. 15 At the end of the ten days they looked healthier and better nourished than any of the young men who ate the royal food. 

Nebuchadnezzar is attempting to erase their identity in God and their dependability on God.

    1. Temple treasures dedicated to YWHY placed in a pagan temple

    2. Their Royal spiritual heritage reassigned to a new pagan nobility

    3. A Torah education underneath a Rabbi replaced with a pagan history, belief and practices

    4. Holiness and separation replaced with opulent foods prepared in unknown ways to celebrate the king’s decadence

    5. Changed names to rewrite identity 

Daniel 1:16-21
16 
So the guard took away their choice food and the wine they were to drink and gave them vegetables instead. 17 To these four young men God gave knowledge and understanding of all kinds of literature and learning. And Daniel could understand visions and dreams of all kinds. 18 At the end of the time set by the king to bring them into his service, the chief official presented them to Nebuchadnezzar. 19 The king talked with them, and he found none equal to Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah; so they entered the king’s service. 20 In every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king questioned them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and enchanters in his whole kingdom. 21 And Daniel remained there until the first year of King Cyrus.

Fasting Impact 

  • Longing for God with a fast, refreshes our Soul.

  • Longing for God with a fast, refreshes and reinforces our identity in Christ.

  • Longing for God with a fast has long lasting and long reaching power.