Seeing the invisible you can do the impossible. If we only look at what we can see with the naked eye, we will lose heart. But if we believe not just what we can see is there, but what God says is there: we will receive incredible power.
What are you going to look at when you see problems in life? You’re going to look at these problems, and you’re going to remember: God has a plan. You’re going to look at your problems and automatically believe and assume that He is working things together for your good. When you look at things with the naked eye, not so much. But when you look at things through the lens of faith you won’t be discouraged because you’ll remember that He has a plan.
How about when you experience pain? When you experience pain, you’re going to believe that God is going to give you great power because it is a grace to suffer. Along with suffering comes the grace to go through it and to get something out of it. God is going to do great things through the pain you’ve experienced. You’re not alone in the midst of it. The same God who walked with Adam in the cool of the day, is the same God that will walk you through what you’re going through. You can say, “I know that you’re with me. I am not alone and I will fear no evil, even here in the valley of the shadow of death.”
We like to label things. (Some more than others. We all know that one guy in the office that’s a label making nazi… Settle down!) I wonder, though, if we don’t at times over-label things. We immediately rush to say ‘bad’, ‘good’, ‘hard’, ‘horrible’, and ‘unfair’- when God might just be letting you go to that hard place so that He can move in power and do the unimaginable.
Take Joseph for example: Went to prison and came out exalted as the prime minister of all of Egypt. So when it feels like God has lost control in your life- put the label maker down, and just say “God I trust you. This is hard, but I trust you. This is rough, but I believe You have a plan. I believe You have a purpose.”
It was C.S. Lewis who said that “pain is God’s megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”
I want you to know that your problems serve a purpose. I want to encourage somebody who’s got some problem going on, some difficulty that you can’t control… Your problem will serve a purpose.
Naaman, who was second in command under king of Aram had everything he ever wanted: money & power. Yet, his riches could not stop leprosy from spreading throughout his body like wildfire. And if he could sit down with you today he’d say “I know this sounds unbelievable, but that leprosy was the best thing that ever happened to me. I don’t know that I ever would have called upon God, I don’t know that I ever would have looked to Him, I don’t know that I ever would have had the bandwidth to hear His voice had it not been for the death of my dreams and for this difficulty.”
Excuses are dangerous. It’s all to easy to sit back and say, “well I am this, because of that” or “I am the way I am because of what they did to me”.
If you’ve allowed your past to define your future by saying “I wouldn’t be so bitter and unpleasant… but you don’t know what’s been done to me”: My advice to you, and what I believe God would have me say to you is this: quit putting your progress in the hands of other people. Live your own life. Run your own race. Don’t let them be the boss of you any longer. Don’t let them control your destiny. Your life is passing you by, and your bitterness is holding you back.
Hear more from this teaching, “Fish Out of Water” here.
We were not born again as an end unto ourselves but as a beginning for someone else. The more we give the more life can grow.
“The world of the generous gets larger and larger; the world of the stingy gets smaller and smaller.” Proverbs 11:24
We were born for our world to grow bigger as we reach out wider. Not only were we born for this, but others need to be born into this. The same gospel that brought us life must be passed on so other’s can have life. We’ve got to share the only name by which men can be saved: Jesus. He must overflow from our lives.
“May the Master pour on the love so it fills your lives and splashes over on everyone around you, just as it does from us to you.” 1 Thessalonians 3:12 MSG
This is going to take generosity. Generosity of spirit, of time, with finances, and with sacrifice. As we are fishers of men following Jesus Christ the mark of our progress is not simply Bible knowledge, it’s evangelistic passion. You know you are like Jesus when you are growing in zeal. A generous spirit knows salvation was given, not earned. We’re stewards of the gospel and will be held accountable for what we did with it. What right do we have to let it stop with us?
I’m so excited to kick off a brand new series called “Below as in Above” this weekend at Fresh Life! I believe Heaven will touch Earth and we will have our eyes opened as we make our way to Resurrection Sunday in this new series. Invite everyone and bring someone with you! Visit this page to get promotional art for your social media and tag your posts #BelowAsInAbove.
this is Billy Graham preaching at Madison Square Garden in 1957
Today Billy Graham turns 96 years old! I am so thankful for this humble, bold and powerful man of God who traveled the world preaching on the salvation that can be found through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. His entire life he has unswervingly pointed to the cross with his every breath. His faithfulness and integrity are an amazing example. What a hero. Happy Birthday to Billy Graham–the greatest of all time!
Well, the sixth and final ship sailed (sad face) and this weekend we are launching a brand new series, Hug It Out: Embracing the goodness of God even when life is bad. No matter what season of life you are in I believe this will prove to be a study and encounter that we all desperately need.
We’re excited to kick off a brand new series at Fresh Life this weekend – “Sometimes, Always, Never” – all about the will of God. Join us at one of our locations across Montana or online at freshlifechurch.com!
We have added a date in the greater Portland area to our 2013 west coast tour! The O2 Experience is a fresh look at life, death, sex and romance. It’s much more than a purity conference–it’s a call to life in Christ. We have seen thousands impacted all over the country through these events in the past and we can’t wait to see what He will do this summer.
June is historically the number one month of the year that people lose their virginity so that is when we go to battle. If you live in or near one of these cities we would love to partner with you and your church in seeing people saved, and set apart to be used powerfully by God. You can get involved, request promo packs, and get more info at o2experience.com.