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Stop The Ride! I Want Off

Good Morning Family!

Thank you all for joining us here today!

Heavenly Father,

We come together today for a Word from You
Prepare our hearts and minds to receive Your message
to each of us, individually and collectively

Convict us each one, 
of the things You are displeased with
chasten us, set us on again on Your path for us

Help us to be the people You created us to be,
living a life fitting of Your Word and kingdom

Let us not only hear Your message
but show us how to apply it to our lives
In Jesus' name
Amen

If you hang around the rides at either an amusement park or county fair, you will eventually hear someone yelling or even screaming “Stop The Ride! I Want To Get Off!”

In preparation for today’s message, I researched amusement parks and the accidents that happen occasionally at them for some examples to share with you, but found that these were too many and too horrific to mention here today.

Although they are rare, the fact is accidents happen at these places.
More importantly, people fear these rides either because of the actual ride itself, or the fact that one is scared that something is going to go wrong with the ride.
But at some point it’s common to hear someone yell, “Stop the ride I want to get off!”
I wonder if you’ve ever felt that way about life?
Or your job.
Or your marriage
Or relationship with a friend
Or your kids
Or whatever......


It all started out well,
Like the amusement park ride, it all started out with the anticipation of excitement and fun.
Marriage sounded like a good idea.
That person seemed like just the right person.
The job sounded like it would meet your needs and could even take you someplace corporately.
The decision you were making at the time seemed like the right decision to make.
You thought it would all work out.
You thought it was the best thing to do.


But then it all got started.
Then the guy pulled the lever and for a short amount of time, it seemed like it wasn’t going to be such a bad deal.
Then the ride started going in circles.
And then it starts going in circles faster and faster
And at some point panic sets in and fear causes you to cry out 

"Stop The Ride, I Want To Get Off!”

But we’re not really talking about an amusement park here are we...
We’re really not talking about some ride at the fair.
But what we are talking about is something called, “Life.”

What we are talking about are the consequences of the choices we make.
What we are talking about is the bad stuff that comes along when we thought we should have had good stuff.
Wouldn’t it be nice if, when things begin to spiral out of control, we could just simply say, 
“Stop the ride I want to get off.”… 
And they actually could!

But this ride called life doesn’t always stop does it when we want it to does it?
The problem for us much of the time is, life's difficulties, do not stop.
Decisions that we have already made cause us to go through situations and problems that we never thought we would have to face or go through.
 

So what do you do when you want off of the ride, but the ride is not stopping?
 

What do you do when it feels like you just can’t take any more?
 

What do you do when you just want the whole thing to slow down and stop so you can get off, but it doesn’t and it can’t. stop and seemingly goes faster!
 

Well, first I want you to know that you are not alone.
 

It’s important for you to understand that what you are going through, although unique in it’s exact circumstances, is not unlike much of what other people are going through,
even some of you here today.
 

Trust me, We’ve all been there.
In fact, some of us, still are there!

Stuff happens that we did not sign up for, doesn’t it.
Sometimes, we didn't create it, other people brought it to us.
So now what?

Regardless of how we got here, here we are... 

We’re on the ride of our life and it seems like we are not going to make it through it, … but guess what, somehow we do!
Somehow people make it...
Some how the ride ends and everything stops spinning, everybody is ok.

We are dizzier perhaps.
Perhaps even nauseated.
We might even be sick for a while.
Life may be different, maybe even forever changed...
But by the grace of God, we do make it.

I’ve been in the church long time, long enough to see some really bad stuff happen to some really good people.
I’ve watched some really sweet people go through some difficult things that, to be honest, scared me to death.

People that I love, pray for, people in my congregation, my family, extended family...some of you.
But amazingly, somehow, we make it through.

But how?
You see God is an ever present help in a time of need!

"Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need."

The psalmist, King David understood what it felt like to have trouble near with no help on the horizon. To feel as though you're being attacked from all sides, with no way out.
He said to God…

"Be not far from Me,
For trouble is near;
For there is none to help.

12 Many bulls have surrounded Me;
Strong bulls of Bashan have encircled Me.
13 They gape at Me with their mouths,
Like a raging and roaring lion."

How many of you have ever had this feeling?
That trouble is approaching, your surrounded by problems
and there is no one to help you?

I dare to say most all of us at some point in our lives... 

Isn’t this the worst part of having trouble in your life?
We could probably handle the situation if we could just understand that help was coming!
Isn't that true? 

David understood this feeling too. He said, 
“For there is none to help.”
But If David could have seen all that God was doing on his behalf at that moment of his life, he probably never would have said, “There is none to help.”

Hebrews told us that our God is a Help in a time of Need.
Look what Proverbs tells us about our God…

"A man who has friends must himself be friendly,
But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother."

Proverbs 18:24 

 I want you to know today that you have a Friend that sticks closer than a brother or a sister.

You have a friend in Jesus that you can talk to anytime day or night.

I implore you, the next time you find yourself laying in bed unable to sleep because of all the worries and problems of your life, and I know there some of going through some very difficult struggles, too big to handle, with seemingly no way out, just start to talk to your friend.

Begin to talk to Jesus.
Tell Him all about your troubles, you don't to be afraid to share even your darkest thoughts with Him.
He will not only hear your hearts cry, but He will also give you peace to be able to sleep that night.

I’ll be honest with you, there are times when even I find it hard to sleep. That's right, even your pastor! I am human just like you, I struggle with my own difficulties, health concerns, family struggles, and believe it or not, many of you who are going through some severe problems..

Sometimes there is so much going on in my life and in my mind that I struggle to find a bit of peace where I can just go to sleep.
So when that time comes, I begin to pray!

I begin to pour out my heart, talk to the only One who can heal my situation.
I share it all with the One who is the only One who can help.
And it’s not long before I find myself asleep.

Thus says the Lord:
“Stand in the ways and see,
And ask for the old paths, where the good way is,
And walk in it;
Then you will find rest for your souls.
But they said, ‘We will not walk in it.

That’s what we need today isn’t it?
That’s what we are looking for today.
If I could just find rest.
If I could just find some peace in my life.
If somehow the storms of my life would just calm down for a few minutes….
I could sleep at night.
I could be happy for a moment
I could enjoy this thing called walking with God.

"But it is good for me to draw near to God;
I have put my trust in the Lord God,
That I may declare all Your works.
"

There is a reason we are tested.
There is a reason we go through things
There is a reason for the ride.
These things cause us to trust God.
These things cause us to draw near to Him.
There is a purpose for your problem.
There is a cause for your trouble.
Without these things we would be self sufficient
Without these things we would have no need of Him
Without these things we would never learn to trust Him.
These things teach us to pray.
These things teach us to have faith.
These things teach us to trust.
They give us a reason to have a God.
If I didn’t need God, then I would not have God.
I have God because I need God.
The answer to your problem today is not to get off the ride!
The answer to your problem is learning to lean on God!
The answer to your problem is learning to trust Him for deliverance from your struggles!

In Mark 11:22, Jesus tells us to "Have faith in God"

Now let's look at the verses following:
"For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. 24 Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.

Verse 22 says "Have faith"
Then verse 23 tells us some things, 
"mountain Be removed"
and verse 24, "pray and BELIEVE"

In others words, problems gone, situations changed!

In closing...

I'll share my own personal story:
Several years ago, doctors explained I hadn't much time left. My youngest children, still at home, under age, depending on me for guidance, love and support.
My parents, depending on me, for help in maintaining, food, medicine etc.
I was too weak to work, too weak to even feed my self, much less help those who needed me

On top of all that, members of my family, had over the years become estranged. People in my family weren't talking to one another. I felt lost.. These problems, were enormous to me. They seemed insurmountable!

I laid it all out before God, I prayed like my life depended on it, because it did! I told Him, if He didn't intervene, not only was I going to die, my children and my parents, would have no means of help. Either He was going to have to heal me, or send someone who would be able to step in my absence. I needed my family to be back together, communicating.. loving and supporting one another. I told Him, that I could not peacefully leave this earth the way things were.
 
I couldn't stop the ride! I couldn't get off!
I couldn't fix anything. My life was literally falling apart before my very eyes. So I cried out to the One who could, and did fix it! 
My faith grew even stronger, my determination to survive and serve God exploded! And before I knew it...
Long story short, I'm obviously still alive, at least I'm still sharing the Word of God, so I'm pretty sure I am anyway!
Doctors have told me there is "no medical explanation" why I'm still here, it's "medically impossible", and frankly, are shocked that I am.

My youngest child graduates high school this coming year. My parents, not without serious health issues, are still here and counting on me for help. Much of my family, have repaired their relationships. (and I'm continuously praying about the rest!) 

Let me tell you this, now I don’t want to stop the ride.
I don’t want to get off!
I’m finding that this ride is a blast when you’ve got Jesus as a friend.

I’m finding that all the tests and troubles and problems seem a whole lot easier when you’ve got someone like Him to talk to about them.

I see those 3 Hebrew children in the fiery furnace this morning, but look there’s someone else in there 
“They said He was like unto the Son of Man.”

I see Peter and John beaten and cast into the innermost part of the prison, but they’ve got a secret up their sleeve. They’ve got praise in the midnight hour.
That old jailhouse is about to fall to the ground, Why?

Because somebody’s not looking at their circumstances, somebody’s looking to Jesus!

"The LORD is near to all who call upon Him, To all who call upon Him in truth."

"Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you."

"If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you."

"Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, 21 to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen."

I have listed a few of my favorite verses, but I could go on and on, citing verses about God answering us, if we just call out to Him. God is faithful to answer!

I don't have a secret formula, I'm not special. If He did it for me, He will do it for you! And I will tell you this, if He did it before, He will do it again! 
God is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow! 

And now may the Lord bless you and keep you;

the Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;

The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace. 

Now and forever, in Jesus' name

Amen
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Brian Monzon Ministries

The Brian Monzon Ministries

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