What we sow we will reap! Galatians 6:7-10, NKJV
- The Christian life is really all about sowing and reaping.
- The problem in marriage and the Christian life is we want to reap what we have not sown.
- Sow the seed + wait the time = Harvest—This applies to every area of our life.
- Keep sowing, pulling the weeds, watering, and keep waiting you will reap what you sow.
- Applying God’s Word to problems in finances you will reap great dividends. 1 Timothy 6:9-10, NIV
If we want a better marriage, we have to stop sowing judgment. Luke 6:37-42, NKJV
- Stop condemning them, and start forgiving them.
- How to stop sowing judgement and condemnation: Romans 8:1, NKJV
- Learn to always assume the best, it brings rest.
- Self-examination is the best explanation of what the real problem is! Luke 6:41, NKJV
- Wrong distractions cause self-destruction.
How to make the relationship you have the relationship you want. 1 Corinthians 7:17-24 NIV
- Release control to God for yourself and your mate.
- What you don’t allow God to control will get out of control.
- Be a burden carrier; help carry their burdens not add to it. Galatians 6:2, NKJV; Galatians 6:5, NKJV
- There will be some burdens that only bringing them to Jesus will give us rest. Matthew 11:28, NKJV
- Be your spouse’s CEO – Chief Encouraging Officer. Romans 1:12, NLT2; 2 Corinthians 13:11, NLT2
Sermon Video Transcription
James Greer: 00:00 Let’s welcome our Alexandria campus. Amen? And I’m telling you, hey, you should have some of these in there, it says Under Pressure. It’s announcing our new series. Hey Brother Darrell, he says this sometimes. He says, pressure busts a pipe, that’s what he tells you. And that’s what the new series is all about. And there’s at least five cards, and we want you to invite at least five people to come and be a part of the new series. Amen?
James Greer: 00:27 I’m going to tell you, this is the last of the boot camp. And God has blessed us in so many ways, and we’ve given out just tons of free material. Who we are in Christ, and Never Again List, and free marriage assessments. And if you haven’t received those, you can still get them in the foyer, or you can go online. And we started out week number one, and we said, the problem’s not the problem. And what we discovered, if you want to change the fruit in your life, you have to change the root in your life. And most people, what they’re fighting about, it’s not the real problem. We found out in First Peter 4:8 that it says, “Most of all love each other, as your life depended on it. Love makes up for practically everything else.” In other words, if we would love our each other, like our life really depended on it, most of our problems would then look small. We’ve got to learn to connect with each other, and poor equity into each other, before we try to draw out of each other.
James Greer: 01:29 Then we went to week number two, and we tried to decide who are we, and how did we get there? That was kind of tough, because we’re really a result of who our parents were, who our grandparents were, who the greatest influence in our life, and who God is, and the others that came into our life, equals the decisions we make. Now that’s who we think we are. But who we really are, is who Christ says we are. And we gave out a Who we are in Christ, and a Never Again List. And if you didn’t get that, you really need to get that. I have it pasted in the front of my Bible, because I have to go over and over and over again. This is who Christ says I am, that’s who I really am. And then we gave you some questions to go home and ask and to talk about. And you talked about what your parents were like, and how did you feel as a child. And man, I talked to so many people, and I talked to many of our staff, and then there was a lot of crying, a lot of sharing, but there’s also a lot of healing. A lot of people didn’t even understand what they brought into their marriage. And we talked about a few of the good things that we got from our parents, and a few of the bad things. We talked about individually whats some of the baggage that we brought into our marriage, that maybe we never dealt with. We agreed and committed to the unspoken expectations were unfair.
James Greer: 02:57 Then week three, we went into the secrets to 45 years and counting. Now, I liked that because that’s where we’re at, we have 45 years and counting. And one of the first things we said is that love is real, and you can’t change love, but love can radically change you. And we had Chris come up here and we said, Chris, you all pray for him. And we said love is like gravity, you can’t change it, and you all pray for him. He walked off the stage but he fell. Because you can’t change gravity, and you can’t change love. Just like later on today you can’t change what you sow, you shall reap. But then you remember he came up and he proposed to his girl, and he got engaged, and they are so to speak in love. We gave out something that said 15 ways to discern whether you were really in love based on First Corinthians 13. We gave you three words for love, which was Eros, which is physical love and philia, which is friendship love. And Agape, which is Godly love. And we said, really you need all three of those in a marriage. If you have Agape by love, and you have philia love and Eros love, you have a marriage that will last.
James Greer: 04:05 And then it came today, and we gave you another handout. This is the last handouts for awhile, you can almost make a book. And it’s eight things, you know, it’s eight things a husband can not do, and only seven that a wife can’t do. It doesn’t seem fair. And we’re not going to go over them all, we’ll over one or two. A husband, he can’t be harsh to his wife. He can’t be harsh to his wife, and then want her to be kind to him later, it just does not work. You can’t be loyal to your sports, TV shows, and be the spiritual leader of your house. You can’t expect your wife, and your church, to be the spiritual leader that God called you to you. You can’t devote your life to hobbies and golf and hunting, and always expect your wife to be in the right mood. I don’t know what that means. But you can’t always be fighting, instead learn to fight for your marriage, just not fight in your marriage. You can’t pursue porn, and pursue your wife, at the same time. And your wife can’t use these against you. That’s just a view of them. Now wives, things a wife cannot do. You can never, never underestimate the influence of encouraging words to your husband. I’ve told you over and over, men are simple, women are complicated. I don’t even think they understand them. But anyway, but anyway, men are simple. They just got a big ego. All you do is pat their ego, and they’ll do almost anything you want. But I honestly believe you can never underestimate the influence your encouraging words are.
James Greer: 05:43 In fact, today we’re going to learn something about encouraging words, ladies. We want you to be the CEO, the chief encouraging operator in your family, and we want that to happen. And another thing, you can’t nag your husband into being the spiritual leader of the house. It just, it won’t happen. You can never underestimate the value of character in your life. You can never use crying, it’s not fair when you’re trying to manipulate your husband. It’s just not fair. It’s not fair to say nothing’s wrong, when something’s really wrong. Those are just a few, that you can’t use ladies.
James Greer: 06:20 I want to tell you what I hope to accomplish today, before we get into the message. The goal today is for your mate, at the end, to be the CEO of your life. The chief encouraging officer of your life, that’s the goal. Your mate, like my wife Debbie, I love that she knows everything about me, and she loves me anyway. Holy Moses! I’m glad you don’t know everything about me, you probably wouldn’t come to church. She knows everything about me, she loves me, she still believes in me. That’s why she is the CEO of my life. Once you got to learn, I’m not Debbie’s project though, I’m Debbie’s partner. And ladies, your husband, he’s not your project, he’s your partner. And there’s some things you’ll have to learn, and I hope you learn them a day.
James Greer: 07:26 Then one of the key insights you’re going to learn for the next four weeks, because it has a lot to do with pressure, and it has a lot to do for going from stressed to blessed. And we have to learn to sow what we want to reap, not sow what we are reaping. And we’ll talk about that today, it’s so important that we’re going to talk about next week as a universal principle, that God set up for our good. We’re going to learn today, I hope, how to stop sowing judgment and condemnation. And the way that we do that is by, we begin just assuming the best in the other person. We then release control of ourselves, and to our mates, to God. We learned to be burden carriers, and not producing burdens. And then we sum it up and say, man, let’s be encouragers one to another. Whether you’re in a relationship, whether it’s your kids, or whether it’s your mate.
James Greer: 08:16 Okay, here we go, you ready? We have to learn to sow what we want to reap, not sow what we’re reaping. You say, well, I know that. No you don’t. You don’t really know that. You may have heard that, but you don’t believe that, or you wouldn’t be sowing what you’re doing. I mean this can change your marriage, it can change your life. Most of us sow what we’re reaping. We’ve been blinded to the truth, as Christians you know, we sow what we reap. Most of us sow what we’re reaping, and we miss the power and presence of God in our life. If you really, if you’re not careful, we sow what we’re reaping. In other words, if you’re ugly to me, I’m ugly to you, and sometimes uglier than you were to me. The Proverb chapter fifteen says, “A soft answer turns away wrath.” But I’m going to tell you, usually that does not happen to me.
James Greer: 09:06 So therefore we men, the godly principles that he set in place. What you’re going to learn this week, to rule universe for my good, and you’re good. In fact, I’m living, and you’re living really mainly by what we have sown in our past. So we sow what we reap. Galatians 6:7 says, “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked. Whatever a man, woman, boy, girl sows, they shall also reap.” The Christian life is really all about sowing and reaping. If you really have a need in your life, you can just start thinking, where’s the greatest need in my life right now? Whatever it is, the best way is to sow what you need. The problem in marriage, and the Christian life is we want to reap without sowing. I want my wife or my husband, I want them to love me and treat me a certain way, I want them to talk to me and speak to me a certain way, but I’m not really sowing that. So verse eight says, “For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life. In other words it says, “And so let us not” Do what? “Grow weary in well doing for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.” There’s part of the problem. “Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.” How about especially those that live in your own household, how about especially those to your mate, how about especially those to your kids, how about especially those to you work with, how about especially those to you come to church with, how about especially to your pastor, Amen.
James Greer: 10:54 What you do is you sow a seed, you wait a time, and you equals a harvest. It applies to any and everything in your life. The reason most people don’t rejoice in the promise, is because they try to reap the same day they sow, it won’t happen. See if you’re sowing, and you pull the weeds and you’re watering and you keep waiting. You not might reap, you will reap whatever you sow. See, it’s a fact of life, we’re going to reap what we’re sowing. I’m reaping right now, I’m 45 years of marriage. I’m reaping now, what I’ve sown for 45 years. I’m reaping in my savings. I’m reaping in my ministry. See what I’ve been sowing the last 40, 50, 60 years, my goodness I was telling the other day, we’ve got to get a sense of urgency in the ministry. Amen? I mean people are dying, they’re going to hell, we’ve got to tell people. I said, man, I’m 65, I’m fixing to be 65. Josh says, I’m trying to be, so serious, he says you’re fixing to be 66. It was not funny at the time. Do you all know why you all have these cards today? Because I said you’re fixing to have a sense of urgency Josh, you just added one year. Today is Wednesday afternoon, you have these ready by Sunday. That’s a sense of urgency. Get after dude. But we do, man, we got to have a sense of urgency. Because really what I’m telling you right now, we’re reaping what we’re sowing. The reason that I have the marriage today, is because what I’ve been reaping from the last 45 years. Somebody called and they said, you shouldn’t put that because your wife doesn’t look that old, but you do. True story. I said, well, thank you, I think? I’m not sure that was a compliment, it was for her, and they were right, you know. But do you understand, I’m reaping now, what I’ve been sowing? I’m reaping now financially, because what we were sowing for the last 45 years. Man, let me tell you what, if you are young, you need to start sowing correctly right now. If you sow correctly when you’re young, you’ll reap correctly when you’re older. In reality, I know multitudes of people that live better when they retire, than they ever did when they were working. You know why? Because they sowed the right way when they’re younger, so when they’re older they reap. God set it up, a universal principle for the good of me and you. Amen?
James Greer: 13:29 Do you do you know why we get the preach to five, six, seven, eight, a thousand people today, and I used to treat the 12 or 35? I told my wife and some of you all going to hear it pretty soon. I told my wife, I mean, we used to preach to 12. then we preached to 35, then we’ve got the 500. I told her, I said, honey, if I ever get to preach to a thousand people, I’m going to be so happy. I finally got to preach to a thousand people. I went home a few weeks ago, I said, honey, I’m not happy. She said, I knew you we’re going to do that. I just, I knew you were going to do it, you’re just never going to be happy. I said, I’m happy with you, but I’ll never be happy. I hope you’re not happy where you are spiritually. I want to share with you something that I’m going to share with a few people this week. I think we got to be very careful, we can become content and complacent because all what God’s doing in our life, and we can forget what really going on in the world. And whether I’m 66 or 86, I hope that never happens to me, I never want to become completely complacent. I hope that I can sow the seeds of God’s word as long as I’m here, and I hope you do too.
James Greer: 14:44 So we’re really a result of what we sow, so are you, so is your marriage. You’re basically where your are because of what you’ve sown in the past. If you want to be somewhere different, just change what you’re sowing, and keep doing it. The problem is, America as a whole, is a spoiled nation. America lives for instantaneous gratification, they do it in their marriage, they do it on their jobs and many do it at church. So they come to church and they don’t get exactly what they want, so either they quit coming, or they go somewhere else, or do something else. They get married, and when the instant gratification wears off they either try somebody else, or do something else. You know, they do it on their jobs, that’s why you have so many people trying all these stupid get rich quick schemes, there is no such thing. When it sounds too good to be true, guess what it is? It’s too good to be true. Every single time I’ve invested in one of those get rich quick scheme, I’ve lost every time, every single time.
James Greer: 15:51 It’s like gambling. Listen, I’ve tried gambling. Me and my wife when we got married, I won a trip, we didn’t have a honeymoon. I mean I’ve told you, we just ran up to the justice or of the peace and got married, I worked my way back, that was some honeymoon. But I sold enough carpet, and we won a trip. I went to Las Vegas and we didn’t have credit cards, and so I had to pay cash down on a deposit for a car. And I went to the MGM, man, I was country, come to city. I came in, I’m taking pictures of everybody, the bouncers or whatever you call them, they come and take my camera. They said, you can’t do that. I said, how come? This is so cool. They said, you can’t take pictures of all these people. I said, alright. So I try to gamble a little bit you know, and I’m doing okay. I said, Debbie, go to bed, I got this. You know, I’m just going to stay up a little while. Yeah, I did not win, thank God I put up a deposit for my car. I lost most of what we had, which was not that much. I don’t really believe there’s something wrong with gambling if you can do it as entertainment. If you can go in, hey, this is just like going to the show, and you have a small amount of money and you’re going to do that, and you do and go home. But if you go there and you think you’re going to get rich, you’re a fool, it isn’t going to happen. That isn’t how they got what they’re doing, and I see it destroying so many people, and their lives and their families. I deal with it almost every week. I dealt with it last week. I dealt with it a while back with a guy that had put it all on his credit card, and he didn’t want to tell us wife, and then he turned his credit card and it’s being stolen. It was his own credit card. Well, they have video cameras at the casinos that saw him with the credit card. So now he got turned in for the credit card, then he had to tell his wife it that it was his card, I mean it just goes on and on and on and on. So what I’m telling you about this, is this, there’s no such thing as an instantaneous gratification, that lasts. That gambling, there’s no quick way to get rich.
James Greer: 17:50 First Timothy chapter six verse nine says this, “People that want to get rich, you fall in all kinds of temptations, and trapped into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into to ruin and destruction.” I see it all the time. “For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evils.” You know some people they eagerly, for money, you know, they wandered away from the faith. I mean instead of…you do understand what happens? Instead of putting your faith in Jesus Christ, you begin to put it in something else, and they pierce themselves to mini griefs. See, money is one of the main things that couples in relationships fight about. It’s one of one of the things they fight, because they haven’t applied God’s word to the problem. You haven’t applied the sowing and reaping principles, you’re looking for instantaneous gratification. And couples begin to blame each other, then they blame their boss, then they blame their company, then they blame the economy. The real truth is you haven’t blamed yourself. You haven’t been sowing to the right thing, and so now you’re reaping what you’ve sown. If you have sown your money to a savings account, if you have sown your money to God’s work. And if you stopped blaming each other, if you’ll sow to savings, if you’ll slow to God’s ministry, you’ll reap great dividends. Thank you Brother James. Amen. Somebody needed to say that. I can preach to myself, yes siree. I know when I’m preaching to myself, by the way. When I’m preaching to something, that somebody doesn’t want to hear. I just say, amen, brother James. I agree with me. But it’s the truth, do you know why I know it’s truth? Not because what I say, because the Bible says, whatever a man soweth, he shall reap. Amen.
James Greer: 19:36 Alright, number two. You know, if you want to have a better marriage, do you know what we need to do? Want to have a better marriage? We need to stop sowing judgment into our mate’s life, and everybody said, amen. Luke chapter six verse thirty seven says, “Judge not and you shall not be judged.” I tell you what, I need to be judging my own life. “Condemn not, and I shall not be condemned. Forgive and you shall be forgiven.” I need to stop condemning, I need to start forgiving. If you’re not careful, without knowing it, we’ll start judging our wives, and condemning our wives and [inaudible], but we do it with a different standard than we judge our own life. We don’t judge and condemn other people with the same standard that we judge ourselves. See, if we do something, or we act a certain way, we self-justify why we do it. If we said something or did something, we say, hey, they just don’t understand what I went through. If we’re late, we said, man, if they only knew the traffic, the problem we have. If they’re late, I can’t believe they’re late. If I say something ugly, they don’t believe all the trouble I have. If they say something ugly, I can’t believe they talked to me that way. Do you see we don’t judge ourselves as we judge other people, so we got to learn to first of all, stop judging other people harsher than what judge ourselves, and everybody said, amen.
James Greer: 20:52 So how can we do that? Number one, start trying to assume the best. As soon as you’re going to judge somebody, especially your mate, start assuming the best. Stop right there and say, I’m going to assume the best of them. I’m assuming they had a bad day, I’m assuming they got caught in traffic, I’m assuming what happened to them, they’re responding for a certain reason in their life, so I’m going to start assuming the best. Small changes can make a huge difference. Romans 8:1 says this, “There is no condemnation for those that are in Christ who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the spirit.” No condemnation, don’t hold anything against them. Isn’t it great when you get saved, the blood of Jesus Christ washes away all your sins, and he holds nothing against you. Isn’t that great? When you get married, listen if you’re going to marry the person, don’t get married, then hold something against them. Amen? Luke 6:41 says, listen, “Why do you look at the speck in your brother’s or your mates eyes, and you don’t see the plank in your own eyes.” I tell you what, why don’t you do this? Why don’t you remove the plank in your eye, and then look at the removing the other one. You know?
James Greer: 22:03 Okay, do you want to know the best thing to do? Self-examination is always the best explanation to what the real problem is. I want to look at you, and say what the problem is. The real problem is I need to look at me, because I get off the wrong distraction, brings self-destruction. So I got to be careful. So number one, I need to assume the best, right? Number two, I need to have self-examination it’s the best explanation, right?
James Greer: 22:33 Number three, one of the things that happens in relationships is I want to have more control, you all probably don’t, but I do. I am the most craziest control freak in the world. My car is trying to drive itself now. I’m telling you all, it’s got this new thing in it, it drives itself. It says, okay one, so it says it drives itself, so I took my hands off the steering wheel, try to let it drive. Then it start flashing red, put your hands on the steering wheel. True Story. So now if it scoots over a little bit, it’s wham, it puts me back. I’m wanting to say, who wants to control, me or you? It really does this. And so if I’m getting up, I’m going on the on ramp and if I get a little bit in this lane, the car itself swings me back to put me in the middle. But if I take my hands off, it goes back and forth a little bit and flashes red, and says, put my hands on the wheel. It makes me want to say, I told the car the other day, who’s in control me or you? And I found out both of us. I’m going to tell you, it’s bad today when you and your car are in control. Amen? You know what I just read? I read in about two years they’re saying, I don’t want you to be in control, I want your car to be in control, I am going to freak out. They said, in about two years you could just send your car and say, I want to go service out, and it’s going to drive yourself. When I was over in Germany, they already had it. You go and you get on the bus, and there was no driver. Is that freaky or what? I want to be in control. I want to be in control of driving my car, I want to be in control of driving my life, I want to be in control of my family, I want to be in control of my kids. But the problem is the more I try to be in control , the more everything gets out of control. So I’ve got a release, you ready? I’ve got to release the control of my life, and my mate and my kids’ life, and I’ve got to put it in God’s control. It’s almost like going, whew.
James Greer: 24:41 Second, third, whatever it is, I don’t know. I’m the only person in the world that has fifteen points to three point message. But anyway, we got to be burdened carriers. I want to help carry my mate’s burdens. Galatians 6:2 says, “Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law.” Now I also know Galatians 6:5 says, “Each one shall carry his own burden.” And we’ll talk about that next Sunday. I know Debbie can’t carry all my burdens. She can’t do my sermons for me, I kind of wish she could though, it’d be nice, and neither can anybody else. She can’t go to work for me, and you know, there’s some things I just have to do for myself. But some things she can do that really helps reduce my burden. If I’m not home, she doesn’t say, I can’t believe he’s not home, I can’t believe he’s not helping, I can’t believe he’s working late, I can’t believe he’s doing that. Instead she can say, hey, you know, since he’s working hard and since he’s working late, I can help him. I can try to have supper ready. Or vice a versa, it doesn’t matter if it’s he or her, and she can help carry the burdens. She pinpoints, she’ll say, honey, are you getting depressed again? Please be very careful. She doesn’t want me going down that path. She saw that happen to me one time, so when I started getting a little discouraged or getting a little depressed. She’ll say, are you on your medicine, or do you need to relax, or is there something going on that I don’t know about, or slow down. What is it? You know, she says, can help you do something? And she wants to carry my burden. When I get upset about a message, which happens all the time. And I just, I mean, I’d really studied, I prayed and it just didn’t go. And sometimes she’ll say, I know that. And most of the time she said, you know, it probably was better than you thought, and she just helps carry the burden. When I know that she’s worn out, and I can tell. That, you know, I’ll say honey, just rest in don’t worry about it. Whatever it takes, rest this weekend, rest in today, let me do what I can do, I mean let me help. You don’t take advantage of each other though. Because see, if you help carry each other’s burden man is great, if you take advantage of each other, you’re adding burdens. In other words, when I’m weak Debbie tries to be strong, and when she’s weak I try to be strong.
James Greer: 27:10 They’re some burdens that only Jesus Christ can carry for us. That’s the one I want you to think about here in a minute, because that’s the one I want you to give to him. The Bible says, “Call upon me all that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Some of you came today with an unbelievable burden. Some of you, I don’t know why you’re like me, why would you want to go home carrying that burden with you? Do you want to be in control of it? Are you a control freak worse than me? It’s like me and my car, we’re wrestling on who’s going to drive it. You know, I’m going to let God drive my car today, and I want you to. In a moment, we’re going to stand up and we’re going to give an imitation, and what I want you to do is say, God, I want to surrender the control of my life to you today. I want to surrender the burdens of my life to you today. If you’ve never given your life to Jesus Christ, I want you to say, I want to surrender my life, I want to accept Jesus as my personal savior. I don’t want to live in condemnation anymore. I want to be free from my past.
James Greer: 28:21 I want to be a burden carrier for my mate. And you ask God if you’ve been adding burdens, or if you’ve been trying to relieve burdens from your mate. I want you to become your mates and CEO. Romans 1:12 says, when we get together, I want to encourage you, I want to encourage you in your faith. I also want to be encouraged by you. Become encouragers, one for another. Second Corinthians 13:11 puts it this way, “Dear brothers and sisters, dear husbands and wives, I closed my letter with these last words. Let’s be joyful. Let’s grow to maturity. Let’s encourage each other. Let’s live together in harmony and peace. Then the God of love and peace will be with you.” Do you think that you’re your mates chief encouraging officer? Or would you like to commit to doing that today?
James Greer: 29:27 So would you stand and let me pray with you, and pray for you. Hey God, you’re the great encourager. You want to encourage every single person here today. You said in Matthew 11:29 you said, “Come unto all that Labor and heavy laden, and you would give them rest.” God, I pray that you’d speak to our hearts today. Whatever the greatest burden is, help us give that control up today. God, do you want to carry our burdens, and you want us to be burdened carriers for our mates. Help us become encouragers, help us to share with our mates. God, help us share the ministry. God help us shed the right burdens though, for other people that don’t know Christ, for those people that are hurting. God, for those that you’ve called become members here, I pray today is the day they would just step out and say, hey, this is the place that I want to be my home. Maybe you’ve never been publicly biblically baptized, and today’s the day you want to do that. Maybe you just want to come to the front, and put your burden on the altar. Whatever God’s called you to do, I pray this morning that you’d let him have his wheel and his way in your life. It’s in Christ’s name I pray. Amen.
Recorded in Pineville, Louisiana.