Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Unstoppable, Part 3

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Luke 1:32-34, says, "He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end."
God has a Kingdom that will never end, it is UNSTOPPABLE! He invites you & I to be a part of that Kingdom.


From time to time we get discouraged & face difficulties in life. In those moments we need to remember our alignment & our assignment. We are aligned with the king & have an assignment for His kingdom! WE NEED TO KEEP A KINGDOM SPIRIT so that we will fulfill our destiny!

Peter & the early disciples left everything to follow Jesus. Jesus when he was dying on the cross, gave up his Spirit, but he never gave up. Stephen followed in his Savior's footsteps & gave up his spirit but he never gave up! He had an unstoppable Spirit & shared the message of Jesus even as he was being put to death!

Peter said to him, "We have left everything to follow you!" Mark 10:28
Acts 6, says, "57At this they covered their ears and, yelling at the top of their voices, they all rushed at him (Speaking of Stephen), 58dragged him out of the city and began to stone him. Meanwhile, the witnesses laid their clothes at the feet of a young man named Saul. 59While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit." 60Then he fell on his knees and cried out, "Lord, do not hold this sin against them." When he had said this, he fell asleep."


Ananias was called by God to reach out to a man that was hurting & killing his friends! God calls us to love the unloveable!
Acts 9:1-18, says,"...In Damascus there was a disciple named Ananias. The Lord called to him in a vision, "Ananias!" "Yes, Lord," he answered.  11The Lord told him, "Go to... Saul, for he is praying. 12In a vision he has seen a man named Ananias come and place his hands on him to restore his sight." 13"Lord," Ananias answered, "I have heard many reports about this man and all the harm he has done to your saints in Jerusalem. 14And he has come here with authority from the chief priests to arrest all who call on your name." 15But the Lord said to Ananias, "Go!... Then Ananias went to the house and entered it. Placing his hands on Saul, he said, "Brother Saul, the Lord—Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you were coming here—has sent me so that you may see again and be filled with the Holy Spirit."... He got up and was baptized, 19and after taking some food, he regained his strength."

People normally ask questions of graduates like, “what do you want to do when you graduate?” Those kinds of questions are common but they are the wrong question. The question is, “what does God want you to do?” Paul's had a vision of a man from Macedonia needing help. He changed his life plans immediately to travel to this region & share the good news of Jesus!

Acts 16:6- 15, says, "Paul and his companions traveled throughout the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been kept by the Holy Spirit from preaching the word in the province of Asia. 7When they came to the border of Mysia, they tried to enter Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus would not allow them to. 8So they passed by Mysia and went down to Troas. 9During the night Paul had a vision of a man of Macedonia standing and begging him, "Come over to Macedonia and help us." 10After Paul had seen the vision, we got ready at once to leave for Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them..."

Paul and Silas were unfairly & unjustly beaten & thrown in prison. They responded differently that we normally do when we encounter difficulties. They praised in spite of their circumstance & God brought the breakthrough!

Acts 16:16-34 says, "...The crowd joined in the attack against Paul and Silas, and the magistrates ordered them to be stripped and beaten. 23After they had been severely flogged, they were thrown into prison, and the jailer was commanded to guard them carefully. 24Upon receiving such orders, he put them in the inner cell and fastened their feet in the stocks. 25About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them."


Unstoppable, Part 2

You can listen to this message right now by clicking here
UNSTOPPABLE-- If you have unfulfilled destiny, you are unstoppable for the purposes of God.
Therefore, in the present case I advise you: Leave these men alone! Let them go! For if their purpose or activity is of human origin, it will fail. 39 But if it is from God, you will not be able to stop these men; you will only find yourselves fighting against God." Acts 5:38-39

KEY THOUGHT- Understand that the end of an era does not mean the completion of your destiny. Peter & the entire Church was stopped & unable to move forward. The end of an era was complete & Jesus went to Heaven. They were all alone. In that moment, they did what each of us should do when we are stopped, THEY PRAYED!

Peter, the Apostle, became an unstoppable force in the New Testament church despite his past problems! Maybe you can relate...

1. Peter Had A Problem With Fear & Failure.
"Come," he said.Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, "Lord, save me!" 31Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. "You of little faith," he said, "why did you doubt?" Matthew 14:29-31
Key thought- You may be stopped by fear & failure today, but all you need to do is reach out to Jesus!

2. Peter Had A Problem Aligning His Will With God’s Will.
"Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. "Never, Lord!" he said. "This shall never happen to you!" 23Jesus turned and said to Peter, "Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men." 24Then Jesus said to his disciples, "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me." Matthew 16:22-24  (see also, Luke 22:47-52)
Key thought- You can realign your will with God's will today & receive God's Holy Spirit. The Bible shows us that Peter responded to God by receiving forgiveness for his past, rising up in faith in his present, & seizing hold of the destiny God had for his life.

Closing thought- Why not ask God for that same power today? God is able to unstop whatever is holding you back so that you can become unstoppable for His plans & purposes! You can't achieve it, just receive it! Ask God to fill you with His Holy Spirit for His plans & His purposes! You won't regret it!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Thoughts from Wave Conference 2010

I went with a team of about 20 people from our church to the 2010 Wave Conference in Virginia Beach last week & it was awesome! Every single one of us left with God encounters that significantly changed & challenged us. It's much like going to an awesome youth camp, but for adults. :-) Pastors Steve & Sharon Kelly & their team (wavechurch.com) always do a tremendous job in creating environments that produce life changing experiences. Wave Conference, much like Hillsong Conference, is designed for the entire family which is an awesome blessing. I'd recommend anyone wanting to grow their church or grow their lives attend next year. (waveconference.com) I wanted to share a few thoughts that stood out to me from the various speakers. Most of these quotes are without context, so keep that in mind. Words can't describe what God deposited into my heart & our team in those few days... but I'll give it a shot.

Speaker- Gary Clarke, Lead Pastor of Hillsong Church (London)
Key Quotes- "Wherever you find disorder, chaos or trouble in an organization you'll find a heart filled with selfish ambition" (James 3)
"Be an attractive person. Attractiveness is about doing the best with what God has given you."

Speaker- Scott Wilson, Eurolead.net (His, 'The G Factor' book is worth a read)
Key Quotes- "Your destiny is determined by your connections. Give thought to your life long relationships" He said so many good things but I couldn't write them all down because he had me laughing so hard. Hilarious!

Speaker- Pastor Brian Houston, Hillsong Church (Australia)
Key Quotes- "The theme of your heart will determine the story of your life."
"The end of an era is not the same as the completion of your destiny."
"Leaders live with the belief that the best is yet to come"
"Your alignment (who you partner with) is just as important as your assignment (what you're called to do) because it will determine whether or not you fulfill your assignment."
"Never develop a wounded Spirit."
"Don't bring your theology down to the level of your experience."

Speaker- Pastor Steve Kelly, Wave Church (Virginia Beach)
Key Quotes- "You may need to chew on mediocrity for a season, but don't develop a taste for it."
"Your self-esteem will attract a certain type of person. What you respect you will attract."
"Don't sabotage the good things in your life by expecting bad things."
"Don't make important decisions in isolation or in anger. Resist being a compulsive or reactionary person & leader."

Speaker- Pastor Judah Smith, The City Church (Seattle, WA)
Key Quotes- "God is not a pinata & prayer is not a stick."
"Don't try to 'fix' it when you really need to 'faith' it."
"We should pray each day not because it's the right thing to do but because we need to do it to make it each day"

Click here to listen to or watch a version of the message that he shared at the conference. Fantastic!
Speaker- Pastor Casey Treat, Christian Faith Center (Seattle area, WA)
Key Quotes- "The Spirit of a man or woman decides whether or not they will overcome & will sustain them through tough times."
"Who's in your life & how are they affecting your spirit?"
"There may be bad stuff going on around you, but don't let it get in you."
"Have an excellent Spirit like Daniel (the prophet) & rise up anyway (despite your circumstance)"
"You can say the right thing but have the wrong spirit."

Those are a few of the quotes from the life changing sessions that I had the privilege to be a part of. The environment was life giving, the worship was phenomenal & I had an absolute blast. Looking forward to 2011 already!