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The Law of Receptivity
02/01/2009
Scripture: Acts 1:6-11;Acts 1:15-16; Acts 2:42-47; ...
Track 5 of 5 in the The Go-Givers series
Running time: 50 minutes, 24 seconds.
All the giving in the world wont bring success, wont create the results you want unless you yourself is willing and able to receive in like measure. Just like giving is a choice, receiving is also a choice. We must submit to both in order to be a Go-Giver. If you dont let yourself receive, youre refusing the gift of others and you shut down the flow.



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Mike Nobis Speaker: Mike Nobis
Sunday School Teacher, Former Elder at Madison Park Christian Church. Mike is President of JK Creative Printers & Mailing in Quincy, IL. He is married to Pam and has three children, Tom, Tyler and Jennifer. Mike has three grandchildren: Ryne, Ivy and Alicia.

View all sermons by this speaker.


The Law of Receptivity

Awareness is a funny thing in life. It is amazing what passes us everyday but because we aren’t paying attention or are unaware of what is going on, we miss so much.

Have you ever bought something that you thought was unique and right after you took possession of it, you noticed how many people had the same item?

A few years ago when Pam and I flew to London to see Jennie, we bought two new large pieces of luggage for the trip; bright red ones. We figured since no one used red luggage, ours would be easy to locate at the baggage claim area. Everyone seemed to have red luggage. I was stunned how many people actually liked red.

I don’t know about you all, but this week was packed with special needs of people from this class. It seemed this was a week that really had a lot of prayer requests in it. There were a lot of people who were on my mind and prayers all week. I don’t necessarily think the week was extra hard on people, I think for myself, awareness about being authentic and being a better Go-Giver kicked in more. In fact, if I were totally aware of all the needs in this class, it might be a bit overwhelming. I can’t imagine what it would be like to be totally aware of all the needs in Quincy. Jesus was aware of everyone’s needs.

This all leads to something I feel we need to discuss before we go any further to finish our study on Go-Giving. Jesus had a tremendous burden he carried, He loved the world so much that He came to this earth as a man to die for us and give us eternal life. He was the perfect Go-Giver and because He was that way, everyone who had needs was attracted to Him. Because He was in human form while on this earth, He was limited in time and space and could only meet the needs of people He came in contact with. So much more needed to be done that was beyond His presence. But Jesus had a plan.

Acts 1:6-11 So when they met together, they asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight. They were looking intently up into the sky as he was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them. “Men of Galilee,” they said, “why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.”

I love this passage. I truly believe many churches today are still looking up into the sky wondering where Jesus went. The disciples asked a very important question, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?” What was His answer?

Jesus gently tells them that it was their job to restore the Kingdom back to Israel. In fact, their job was to go out and restore the Kingdom to “all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” What is hilarious, right after Jesus drops that bomb shell, He floats off back to heaven.

Can you tell me why the disciples are looking up in the sky? What do you think is going through their minds as Jesus flies out of sight? What was the subtle message from the angels to the disciples? Get to work!

What is amazing about the Book of Acts is, it records what 12 disciples did in the matter of 30 years to turn the world upside down only because they listened to the angels and got to work. You and I today sit here in this room as Christians learning to be Go-Givers because of the work of those 12 men. Acts 2 introduces to us how they did this amazing thing, they did it through the power of the Holy Spirit. There was nothing special about the disciples in Acts 1. They were just like you and me. I want you to see something that just jumped out at me like a huge Gorilla.

Acts 1:15-16a In those days Peter stood up among the believers£ (a group numbering about a hundred and twenty) and said,…

How many members do we have in this class who attend regularly on a monthly basis? We have more than 120 members. Why is it that 120 people in Acts that start off believing in Jesus could affect the whole world for Christ and our class who has the gift of the Holy Spirit in our lives struggle with winning just one person? Be honest, what is missing?

All throughout Acts is the presence and power of the Holy Spirit working on behalf of the believers in Jesus, His true disciples. The book of Acts is the only book in the Bible that s not complete. We, just like the original 12 disciples are still doing the Acts of Jesus in the world to restore the Kingdom to anyone who wants it. What’s missing? We are missing. The message to our class is simple,

“Members of the Cornerstone Class,” they said, “why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.”

And how did that first church do what they did? How did God add to their numbers everyday those who were being saved?

Acts 2:42-47 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people (They were Go-Givers). And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.

This All leads to the 5th and last Law of Go-Giving.
The Law of Receptivity

The key to affective giving
is to stay open to receiving

When you were young, what did you learn about giving? As you teach your kids about giving, what is the key message you give them? Here is something to contemplate:

True or false: It is better to give than receive?

If you are a good person, that is what a good person does, you give. Good people give and don’t think about receiving (Law of Compensation). BUT, if you are like me, I think about receiving all the time, sometimes I can’t help it. Which means I am probably not a very good person. Some of you might find yourself in the same spot. So why bother trying to give? Some of you have the knack for giving while some of us really struggle. Obviously some of you must be better than the rest of us.

Experiment: I am going to count to 30, while I am counting, I want all of you to exhale and don’t stop until I reach 30. How far did you get?

What if I tell you that it is medically proven that it is healthier for to exhale than to inhale? Would that make a difference in helping you make it to 30?

No, of course not. You just can’t go on exhaling forever, no matter what argument anyone tries to give you. What if I told you that it is was better for your heart to relax than to contract? Is there anyone willing to try it? If you look around, all over this planet is the process of going out and taking in. We breathe out carbon dioxide, we breathe in oxygen. Plants breathe in carbon dioxide and they breathe out oxygen. So does the rest of the animal kingdom. Billions and billions of organisms doing the exact opposite for one another so all of life survives and grows. Our giving is their receiving and their giving is our receiving.

Giving can only happen because there is a receiving!

All the giving in the world won’t bring success, won’t create the results you want unless you yourself is willing and able to receive in like measure. Just like giving is a choice, receiving is also a choice. We must submit to both in order to be a Go-Giver. If you don’t let yourself receive, you’re refusing the gift of others and you shut down the flow.

So the big question is this, what is the definition of receiving? What does it mean to receive?
The secret to success from God’s point of view is very simple if one looks at it openly:To have success, to gaining it, to having it is to give, give, give. The secret to giving is making yourself open to receiving (The Law of Receptivity)

The key to affective giving
is to stay open to receiving

The point to all this very simple, it is a full circle. Go-Giving is an eternal circle of giving and receiving as one process.

This creates an interesting dilemma; sort of a “Chicken and Egg” problem. What came first, giving or receiving? Receiving has to come first or there is no way giving can take place. But if there is no one to give, then how can someone receive? The same is true concerning leadership and submission. For some husbands, the wife is to submit first because without followers, how can someone lead? But it requires someone to lead before someone else can follow. What examples do we see in scripture to solve the dilemma about Go-Giving?

John 13:3-8 Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him. He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?” Jesus replied, “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.” “No,” said Peter, “you shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered, “Unless I wash you, you have no part with me.”

Explain to me the principles of Go-Giving Jesus taught his disciples?

John 13:12-15 When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.

So what is the answer to the dilemma in Go-Giving? What comes first, giving or receiving? In this case, servanthood took the first step.

Matthew 26:6-13 While Jesus was in Bethany in the home of a man known as Simon the Leper, a woman came to him with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, which she poured on his head as he was reclining at the table. When the disciples saw this, they were indignant. “Why this waste?” they asked. “This perfume could have been sold at a high price and the money given to the poor.” Aware of this, Jesus said to them, “Why are you bothering this woman? She has done a beautiful thing to me. The poor you will always have with you, but you will not always have me. When she poured this perfume on my body, she did it to prepare me for burial. I tell you the truth, wherever this gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.”

So what is the answer to the dilemma in Go-Giving? What comes first, giving or receiving? In this case, receiving took the first step.

Does the church tolerate an unhealthy attitude of giving? In fact, where does burnout come from in the servants of God?