Title:  Moving On

Summary:  Life is filled with changed.  In order to navigate the changes
successfully, we must make the transition by not being stuck in the past and by
taking hold of the future, especially a future that has God at the center, or we
may sadly find ourself stuck where we are.

Function:  To motivate those going through transition, whether it be graduates,
parents, military, to remember to keep God at the center of their future plans.

Text:  Heb 11:1 - 12:3

Scripture Reading:  Jer 29:11


Intro:
1.  Many of you are excited
	a.  Some graduating, going off to college
	b.  Others graduated and are getting stationed at a new place
	c.  This time of year reminds that life is filled with changes
2.  Want to talk not about change, but transition, which is different
	a.  New school, job, boss, house, child, empty nest -- thatís change
	b.  Transition:  Letting go of way things were, taking hold of things new
		- Inner attitude
	c.  Can be exciting - Marriage, graduation, new assignment 
	d.  Can be difficult - Mid-Life Crisis, Stay abusive relationship, Death
3.  Many of you in process of change
	a.  Graduate, new assignment, child moving away
	b.  Those left behind, adjust to you being gone
4.  Questions - Can I do this? What next? What will I do? Who will I be?
	a.  Can I make the transition?
	b.  Does Bible have anything to offer?
	c.  Heb 11 - Lessons for life

I.  Donít be stuck in your past 
	A.  You know what I think about the past?  Itís in the past
		1.  Times moves forward
		2.  Nothing stays the same
		3.  Canít re-live the past - It is over
	B.  Moses and Israelís lessons in transition(11:23-29)
		1.  Israel comfortable for 400 years, then enslaved
		2.  God called Moses to deliver them
			a.  Moses was in the end a forward looking person
			b.  He not stuck reminiscing about Egypt
			c.  Several verses for Moses here
		3.  Only ONE verse for Israel
			a.  Were they ever forward looking?
			b. Yes, when Pharaohís army on their heels
			c.  But that was all
		4.  Their problem:  They didnít let go of their past
			a.  They made a change, but not transition
			b.  Their past world was Egyptian
				- Thought like, talked like, walked like Egyptian
				- Ate Egyptian food
			c.  Question - Who am I now?
				- Transition often means redefine who you are
				- Before, they were bricklayers
				- What now?
			d.  They wanted to go back
	C.  ILL:  Ever know anyone like that?
		1.  Some avoid H.S. reunion - Canít handle change
			a.  Some jock, cheerleader stay in town
			b.  Dead end job, dead end life, drink on weekends
			c.  Go through relationship after relationship
				- Changing but never making transition
			d.  All they do is re-live glory days
		2.  Leads to despair and depression
	D.  (Phil 3:13) - Forget the past, take hold of the future
		1.  What did Paul leave behind?
			a.  Place of honor, prestige, education
			b.  Educated under Gamaliel - ďDr PaulĒ
		2.  Never one hint of regret in Paulís writings
		3.  Why?  he was forward looking...

II.  Move on to what is next
	A.  Great thing about the future - Hasnít happened yet
		1.  Canít change the past
		2.  But the future is full of possibilities
	B.  Word for this - HOPE 
		1.  The text speaks of two related things
			a.  One is hope - rooted in the future
			b.  Faith - Rooted in the past
			c.  Together they are future oriented
		2.  (11:8-12) Abrahamís hope
			a.  Went out not knowing - A huge step down
			b.  Ur a sophisticated city - running water in homes!
			c.  Now they are living in tents!
 			d.  (11:13-15) Never said - My heartís in Ur
		3.  I am speaking of small hopes
			a.  Small hopes like gas for car, push us forward
			b.  Without them you get stuck
			c.  Small hopes and transitions go together
		4.  Paul spoke of small hopes
			a.  Hope to send Timothy to you soon 
			b.  Hope to go to Spain, to come visit
			c.  Absence of small hopes will rob you of joy
	C.  Examples:
		1.  Personal example:  I not let go of Plattsmouth
			a.  Did a ďmainĒ when go back home
			b.  Didnít have a cool car now, so it not same
		2.  Clarissa - She wanted peace, but was stuck
			a.  No plans, no smalls hopes, just unhappy
			b.  Stuck on former boyfriend, never let go
			c.  Needed to work in small hope, needed gasoline
		3.  Shawn & Teresa - Not happy with their church
			a.  They kept comparing it to a former church
			b.  Never emotionally committed to present church
			c.  Began to church hop, eventually fell away
			d.  Couldnít find church like that former one
				- Went back home, and that church changed to!
		4.  You can make changes on outside, but not change
			a.  Church hopping a sign of not making transition
			b.  Not make transition, you get stuck
			c.  "Do not say, ĎWhy is it that the former days were better than these?í  
			     For it is not from wisdom that you ask about this (Eccl 7:10).Ē
	D.  Why is transition so difficult?
		1.  Re-define who you are - Before I was student, who next?  Will I 
		     be able to do it well?  What challenges?
		2.  Transitions mean the END of something
			a.  May feel a sense of loss
			b.  May feel sense of uncertainty
			c.  May even greive 
		3.  Exchange one hope for another get old after awhile
			a.  I hope to graduate, college, marry, job, promotion, retire,
			     grandchildren, . . . . 
			b.  What next?  Is this it?  Have I arrived?
		4.  (1 Cor 15:19) - ďIf we have hoped in Christ in this life only, we 
		     are of all men most to be pitiedĒ

III.  Reach out to the big hope
	A.  Something beyond our small hopes - hope of hopes
		1.  Still there when small hopes not fulfilled (not get into college)
		2.  Still there when small hopes are fulfilled (is this all?)
		3.  It is our gasoline that keeps pushing us forward
		4.  One thing that remains same in all our transitions - our anchor
	B.  What does the Bible say about our big hope?
		1.  (11:1) - Not just faith chapter, but the hope chapter
			a.  Need both
			b.  Faith is the engine, hope is the gas
			c.  (v.6) - Faith God will reward - that is HOPE
		2.  (11:8-10) - Abrahamís faith and hope
			a.  Had little hopes - food, water, clothing, etc.
			b.  But these overshadowed by his big hope
			c.  Thatís what kept him moving forward
		3.  (12:1-2) - Our hope in Jesus
			a.  Run the race set before us
			b.  Lay aside encumberances - Including the past
			c.  Press on
	C.  Without the big hope in Jesus, the little hopes become meaningless
		1.  Example - Qohelet, tried to find fulfillment in little hopes
			a.  Tried it all, and found they all were dead ends
			b.  Building projects, Children, wisdom, being righteous
			c.  Problem not that he did these things
			d.  Problem - Did it without God
		2.  Without God, it is all meaningless
		3.  Eccl 12:1 - Remember your creator in the days of your youth
			a.  Wasted his life (worldly not see it that way)
			b.  Wasted life trying to find fulfillment in wrong places
			c.  Left out the big hope - God
	D.  Keep Jesus at the center of all your other hopes
		1.  Fix your eyes upon him in all you do
		2.  Even when you complete other hopes, this is still there
		3.  Will enable you to make biggest transition of all - Heaven

Concl:
1.  Donít be stuck in past, move forward 
2.  Invitation
3.  Put God at center of your hopes and plans
	a.  Will give meaning to your little hopes
	b.  Will help you make transitions in your life
	c.  Will hope you make final transition to glory

Questions for Small Group Discussion