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Duscks in a Row- Get your Life in Order

Ducks in a Row
Week 1
Get your Life in Order

Psalm 90:12 “Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”
The word number could be substituted order.

Key Thought: In things that matter most it's the order that matters most

Why does order matter?

1. Order communicates priority.

What we put first communicates what we value most.

Revelations 2:2 “I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked people, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. 3 You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary. 4 Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first.”

2. Order determines capacity.

Matthew 6:33 “seek first the kingdom and all these things will be added as well.”

3. Order impacts outcome.

How you start determines how you finish.

How do we get our lives in order?

  1. Make your list

If you don’t set your priorities someone else will set them for you.

2. Make your life match your list

The distance between the truth you know and the truth you live equals the pain you experience.

James 4:17 “If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn't do it, it is sin for them.”

Revelations 2:2-5 “I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked people, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. 3 You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary. 4 Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first. 5 Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first.”

Knock Knock: Closing the Door

Knock Knock
Part 4
Closing the Door

Genesis 4:3-7 “When it was time for the harvest, Cain presented some of his crops as a gift to the Lord. 4 Abel also brought a gift—the best portions of the firstborn lambs from his flock. The Lord accepted Abel and his gift, 5 but he did not accept Cain and his gift. This made Cain very angry, and he looked dejected. 6 “Why are you so angry?” the Lord asked Cain. “Why do you look so dejected? 7 You will be accepted if you do what is right. But if you refuse to do what is right, then watch out! Sin is crouching at the door, eager to control you. But you must subdue it and be its master.”

John 10:10 “the thief comes to steal and kill and destroy.”

Ephesians 6:12 “For we[a] are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.”

Verse 8 “One day Cain suggested to his brother, “Let’s go out into the fields.”[c] And while they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother, Abel, and killed him. 9 Afterward the Lord asked Cain, “Where is your brother? Where is Abel?”
“I don’t know,” Cain responded. “Am I my brother’s guardian?”
10 But the Lord said, “What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground! 11 Now you are cursed and banished from the ground, which has swallowed your brother’s blood. 12 No longer will the ground yield good crops for you, no matter how hard you work! From now on you will be a homeless wanderer on the earth.”

3 doorways into sin.

1. Partial Surrender

verse 3-4 “When it was time for the harvest, Cain presented some of his crops as a gift to the Lord. 4 Abel also brought a gift—the best portions of the firstborn lambs from his flock.

2. Unresolved Anger

verse 5 “The Lord accepted Abel and his gift, 5 but he did not accept Cain and his gift. This made Cain very angry, and he looked dejected.

Ephesians 4:26-27 “In your anger do not sin. Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold."

James 1:19-20
“Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. 20 Human anger[a] does not produce the righteousness[b] God desires.

Proverbs 14:17
“Short-tempered people do foolish things.”

3. Prideful Attitude

verse 8-9
“One day Cain suggested to his brother, “Let’s go out into the fields.”[c] And while they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother, Abel, and killed him.
9 Afterward the Lord asked Cain, “Where is your brother? Where is Abel?”
“I don’t know,” Cain responded. “Am I my brother’s guardian?”

Proverbs 10:17 (LB) “Anyone willing to be corrected is on the pathway to life. But anyone refusing has lost his chance.”

Proverbs 16:18 “Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.”

How do we close the door?

1. Guard your heart.

Proverbs 4:23 “Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.”

The condition of your heart will determine the course of your life.

Psalm 51:10 “Create in me a clean heart oh God and renew a right Spirit within me.”

2. Guard your mind.

Proverbs 23:7 (NKJV) “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.”

Jeremiah 12:3 “Yet you know me, O LORD; you see me and test my thoughts about you. Drag them off like sheep to be butchered! Set them apart for the day of slaughter!”


3. Guard your eyes.

Matthew 6:22The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy,[c] your whole body will be full of light. 23 But if your eyes are unhealthy,[d] your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness?!”

Matthew 5:29-30 “So if your eye—even your good eye[a]—causes you to lust, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. 30 And if your hand—even your stronger hand[b]—causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell.

4. Guard your house

Deuteronomy 6:9 “These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.”

Matthew 12:29 “how can anyone enter a strong man’s house and carry off his possessions unless he first ties up the strong man? Then he can plunder his house.”
vil out of my house, allow Jesus to come in and fill my heart.

Knock Knock: Part Knocking on Heaven’s Door

Knock Knock Part 3
Knocking on Heaven’s Door

I Kings 18:41 “And Elijah said to Ahab, “Go, eat and drink, for there is the sound of a heavy rain.” 42 So Ahab went off to eat and drink, but Elijah climbed to the top of Carmel, bent down to the ground and put his face between his knees. 43 “Go and look toward the sea,” he told his servant. And he went up and looked. “There is nothing there,” he said. Seven times Elijah said, “Go back.”44 The seventh time the servant reported, “A cloud as small as a man’s hand is rising from the sea.”So Elijah said, “Go and tell Ahab, ‘Hitch up your chariot and go down before the rain stops you.’”45 Meanwhile, the sky grew black with clouds, the wind rose, a heavy rain started falling and Ahab rode off to Jezreel. 46 The power of the Lord came on Elijah and, tucking his cloak into his belt, he ran ahead of Ahab all the way to Jezreel.

Matthew 7:7 “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.”

3 things that happened when we pray these kind of persistent prayers.

  1. Persistent prayer allows you to hear what others don’t hear.

verse 41 "And Elijah said to Ahab, “Go, eat and drink, for there is the sound of a heavy rain.”

I Corinthians 2:9 "No eye has seen no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has in store for those who love him. But God has revealed it to us by his spirit."

2. Persistent prayer allows you to see what others don’t see.

verse 43 and 44 "43 “Go and look toward the sea,” he told his servant. And he went up and looked. “There is nothing there,” he said. Seven times Elijah said, “Go back.”44 The seventh time the servant reported, “A cloud as small as a man’s hand is rising from the sea.”

Prayer is the difference between seeing with our physical eyes and seeing with our spiritual eyes.

3. Persistent prayer allows you to do what others cannot do.

Isaiah 18:46 “Meanwhile, the sky grew black with clouds, the wind rose, a heavy rain started falling and Ahab rode off to Jezreel. 46 The power of the Lord came on Elijah and, tucking his cloak into his belt, he ran ahead of Ahab all the way to Jezreel.”

Verse 46 “the power of the Lord came upon Elijah.”

Isaiah 40:28-31 " Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. 29 He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.30 Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; 31 but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary,  they will walk and not be faint.

Luke 18:2-5 "One day Jesus told his disciples a story to show that they should always pray and never give up. “There was a judge in a certain city,” he said, “who neither feared God nor cared about people. A widow of that city came to him repeatedly, saying, ‘Give me justice in this dispute with my enemy.’ The judge ignored her for a while, but finally he said to himself, ‘I don’t fear God or care about people, but this woman is driving me crazy. I’m going to see that she gets justice, because she is wearing me out with her constant requests!’”

Knock Knock: What’s behind door #1

Knock Knock: What’s behind door #1


Revelations 3:7-8 “These are the words of him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open. 8 I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut. I know that you have little strength, yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name.”

3 things about walking through the right doors.

1. Don’t give up on unopened doors

Just because a door is not open doesn’t mean it is closed.

Luke 11:5 “Suppose you went to a friend’s house at midnight, wanting to borrow three loaves of bread. You say to him, 6 ‘A friend of mine has just arrived for a visit, and I have nothing for him to eat.’ 7 And suppose he calls out from his bedroom, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is locked for the night, and my family and I are all in bed. I can’t help you.’ 8 But I tell you this—though he won’t do it for friendship’s sake, if you keep knocking long enough, he will get up and give you whatever you need because of your shameless persistence.[d] 9 “And so I tell you, keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.”

Opportunities usually come with lots of opposition.

I Corinthians 16:9 “There is a wide-open door for a great work here, although many oppose me.”

2. Don’t knock down closed doors

2 reasons God closes a door…

  1. It’s not the right thing:

Proverbs 16:9 “We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.”

b. Its not the right time:

Ecclesiastes 3:1-14 “For everything there is a season,
    a time for every activity under heaven.2 
A time to be born and a time to die.
    A time to plant and a time to harvest.3 
A time to kill and a time to heal.
    A time to tear down and a time to build up.4 
A time to cry and a time to laugh.
    A time to grieve and a time to dance.5 
A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones.
    A time to embrace and a time to turn away.6 
A time to search and a time to quit searching.
    A time to keep and a time to throw away.7 
A time to tear and a time to mend.
    A time to be quiet and a time to speak.8 
A time to love and a time to hate.
    A time for war and a time for peace.
9 What do people really get for all their hard work? 10 I have seen the burden God has placed on us all. 11 Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end. 12 So I concluded there is nothing better than to be happy and enjoy ourselves as long as we can. 13 And people should eat and drink and enjoy the fruits of their labor, for these are gifts from God. 14 And I know that whatever God does is final. Nothing can be added to it or taken from it. God’s purpose is that people should fear him.”

When God closes a door it’s for your protection.

Psalm 91:1 MSG “Yes, because God’s your refuge, the High God your very own home, Evil can’t get close to you, harm can’t get through the door. He ordered his angels to guard you wherever you go. “

3. Pray for wisdom to know the difference

Luke 10:38 “As Jesus and the disciples continued on their way to Jerusalem, they came to a certain village where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. 39 Her sister, Mary, sat at the Lord’s feet, listening to what he taught. 40 But Martha was distracted by the big dinner she was preparing. She came to Jesus and said, “Lord, doesn’t it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to come and help me.” 41 But the Lord said to her, “My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! 42 There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.”

The difficulty is not finding something to do, the real difficulty is in determining what are the most important things to do.

How do I know if something is a good decision?

2 things…

  1. do my homework:

Proverbs 21:5
“The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty.”

b. let the HS do His work

Acts 15:28
“It seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us”