Going into Messy Places


Sun, Sep 26, 2021

Teacher: Yale Wall Series: Life is Messy Scripture: 2 Corinthians 11:23-28

SEPTEMBER 26, 2021

Life is Messy


Basically all of the people we look up to in scripture jumped into an extraordinary mess.

  • Noah was given a monumental task because of a world ending flood
  • Moses had to stand up against the ruler of the known world
  • Joshua had to take the land that God promised him 
from giants who didn’t want them there
  • David had to lead a country 
that was being destroyed by a self-righteous leader
  • Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and Daniel 
were all tasked with turning the hearts of rebellious people
  • Jesus came from a perfect place into a broken world
  • The disciples left a pretty simple life for a life of absolute craziness,
 almost constantly running for their lives

After Paul gives his life to Jesus on the road to Damascus, and then goes through his 2-3 years of time being discipled in Arabia:

  • He goes back to Damascus, and then has to flee to not be killed
  • He goes to Jerusalem, and then has to flee to Tarsus to not be killed
  • Then he brings help to the believers in Jerusalem who needed aid
  • Then they travel from Antioch, to Seleucia, to Cyprus, to Salamis, to Paphos, to Perga, to Pamphylia, to Antioch, to Iconium, none of which had a nice hotel room for him
  • Then he has to flee again to Lystra where he ends up getting stoned

  • Then he deals with church politics in Antioch
  • Then Paul and his group go to multiple other cities sharing the Gospel, 
seeing people saved, set free, 
and even some have demons cast out of them,
 which eventually lands him in jail.
  • They go to a few more cities, have to flee being killed again
this time in Thessalonica
  • Then he goes to another 9-10 cities, building churches
 and seeing the worst of the worst people 
turn their lives around.
  • Then another 18 cities where eventually his preaching causes a mob 
to rise up, and he gets arrested again.
 This time he has to tell them he’s a Roman citizen so he isn’t killed,
 he gets shipped all over the place
 and he eventually gets in a shipwreck
  • So he ends up being under house arrest for a couple years 
where he is STILL preaching to everyone in his city
  • Then he has a bunch more missionary work
  • Then he gets imprisoned again, 
and eventually is killed

We love to look up to Paul, and so many of us work hard reading through the letters of the New Testament, trying to imitate the Godliness and devotion of Paul, but we don’t alwyas want to go into messy places.

To achieve things for the Kingdom of God that are anything like those of these early church leaders, we have to be willing to go into messy places for the sake of the gospel.


2 Corinthians 11:23b-28
I have worked much harder, been in prison more frequently, been flogged more severely, and been exposed to death again and again. 24 Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one. 25 Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was pelted with stones, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea, 26 I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers. 27 I have labored and toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked. 28 Besides everything else, I face daily the pressure of my concern for all the churches.


The thing that every one of us is built for, and the thing that we are so clearly called to in scripture, is to leave our comfort behind, and sacrifice our cushy lives, to dive into the messy places with other people.



There is not a messy place in the world that we can go to
 that God doesn’t already know everything about.

 Don’t go into ANY messy place 
without it being bathed in prayer,
 and without listening to the Holy Spirit while you’re there.

Walk into messy places with faith,
 praying that God would go in front of you.


In many of the messy places we walk into in our world, 
there are people who have gone before you that you can learn from.
 Be a learner!

Walk into messy places with humility, 
being willing to learn along the way.


Sometimes when we are in messy places, 
we try and beat around the bush
 and play the long game of trying to get people to see Jesus in us 
instead of being bold,
 and inviting them into relationship with Jesus.

 When you are in messy places, 
be bold, knowing that if you are following God,
 and stand on the truth of the Gospel.

Walk into messy places with boldness, 
ready to bring Jesus into those places.


Sunday Services

Near West Location
Sundays at 11am
2120 W. Washington St., 46222

Irvington Location
Sundays at 5pm
4717 E. Michigan St., 46201 

Contact Info

Mailing Address
2120 W. Washington St.
Indianapolis, IN 46222

(317) 721-9709

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.