Labor Pains

Labor Pains
9-19-21 Sermon Notes “Labor Pains”
 
This month’s theme is “labor.” If you were to look in the dictionary for the word “labor,” (I did, because I’m nerdy like that) you would find several different definitions.  It is an noun, of Latin origin, and the first, most common meaning is “physical or mental exertion; work.  It can also mean a “specific task” or “labor unions collectively”… AND it can mean the process of childbirth.  In this case, “labor” can be turned into an adjective.  What kind of pains?  Labor pains…pains associated with bringing someone new into the world.
 
There is another kind of labor pain that the Apostle Paul is describing in his letter to the Galatians.  Here is what he says in Galatians 4: 19

My children, with whom I am again in labor until Christ is formed in you –

 
Paul viewed those who came to follow Christ as a result of his ministry as his “children.” He says this not in a condescending way, but with great love and affection…and pain.  He is telling his Galatian “children” that what is happening to them is like he is in labor all over again.  His goal is to see “Christ formed” in them.  Paul’s goal is to make disciples.  Does that sound familiar?  It should! It is the cornerstone of our mission statement at Gadsden First United Methodist Church!  The process of making disciples is…well…painful.
 
I will say more about this on Sunday, but for now I will leave you with this:  (1) Making disciples is well worth the labor and the pain. (2) The labor doesn’t stop after disciples are made…neither does the pain.
 
Grace and peace,
Pastor Sam

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