There is nothing you can do to increase God’s love for you. But there’s a lot you can do to increase God’s blessings for you.
This morning. I want to, I want to encourage you. My name is Kao by the way, one of the leaders in one of the staff members here, just thank you, pastor Greg is with his wife, AMI over in the Philippines. There’s been a lot of things going on in his life and her life. And just about a year ago, her father passed away and he was a pastor for Oh 40 years or more and they lived in the, in the parsonage, if you’re familiar with that language of the church. And when he passed away, the church said, okay, you need to move out. So they had a house built. So these next two weeks they’re over there dedicating that moment, moving her into that house and celebrating her 70th birthday all at the same time. So it’s an honor and a privilege to come to you this morning is share where we are.
I want to encourage you though that takes a note. So under program that you were given, just turn it over on the back. There may be a few things you want to write down. Today we’re going to talk about where we’re right in the middle of this series, the season that we’re in, and I’ll say in the middle of it on spiritual disciplines and I, and sometimes we ask ourselves, why are we talking about spiritual disciplines and why are we taking 12 weeks to do this? Because I want you to see the future of where we’re going, not just where we are. It’s easy to look into a mirror or look down or look around and see where you are. It’s easy, but it’s very difficult at times to see where you’re going. And that’s what this series is all about. We’re going somewhere as a community and where we’re going is what we want to see is every person who belongs to this community and who wants to belong to this community of believers, gatherers to discover your purpose.
That’s a big word because it’s very, it can be huge and covered a lot of places to discover your purpose. And every time we go into this place to discover our purpose through spiritual gifts, because that’s where we’re heading into in 2020 it’s hard to believe that we’re just, I mean like what? Less than 12 weeks away from 2020 now and now. Here we are going into that thinking, where are we going so that you can operate not the way you always operate, but operate the way God intended for you to operate. That’s called spiritual gifts and every time you go into a discipline like what we’ve been talking about and you connect them together, listen, this is one of the things you might want to write down when you discipline yourselves to spend time with God, to pray, to hear guidance from God, a spiritual discipline is a place of guaranteed spiritual transformation and you need to hear that and you need to hear it.
Often you need to say it back to yourself. It’s a guaranteed, but not many things are guaranteed in this life. But when you discipline yourself to spend time with God, to seek God, to be with God, that’s a guaranteed of spiritual transformation. And we’ve already covered these gifts. Celebration there on the screen. We’ve covered guidance, we’ve covered worship, we’ve covered confession last week we talked about prayer and so all we want to do today is we want to connect last week with this week and show you how that they connect really well. All of them connect. But last week and this week, prayer, and this is what, this is a tough one for you. Fasting. Now when I mentioned the word fasting in America, that’s, that’s hard to grasp because most of you are already thinking about what you want for lunch today. Matter of fact, you thought about what you wanted for lunch today when you woke up, before you even had breakfast, you’re thinking, are we going to go out to lunch?
Are we going to come back for lunch? Are we put something in the slow cooker for lunch? Am I going to grow out for lunch? What we’re, we’re thinking we kinda are guided by what we’re eating in the moments in the Western world. So when I sit here and talk about fasting as a spiritual discipline, that’s like rubbing your fingernails down a chalkboard. Don’t go there. Don’t even talk about this. So here we are. So get ready to rub your fingernails down this down the chalkboard, but we’re going to do it in a way that might surprise you, that might surprise you today and bring this guaranteed place of spiritual transformation and such a good way this past week in my small group and I have a phenomenal small group. I hope that you are part of a small group somewhere and if you’re not, you can go online or you can get some information at the welcome center.
It’s still not too late. We’re discussing these disciplines every week in our small group. So this past weekend, my small group, we asked this question, why do you pray? Because remember last week we talked about prayer. So every week in small groups, we’re breaking these messages down just a little bit further within discussion. So we ask this question, why do you prayer? And basically two answers came up. There was a lot of answers, but basically you could boil it down into two ways, two categories. Why do I pray? Number one, I want to get closer to God so I pray, but here, here was the second and maybe it was real close tie to, I want to get closer to God. The second reason that I pray when we asked our small group in this unofficial little survey and brought out the answers with simply to get a breakthrough, are you familiar with that term breakthrough?
I need a breakthrough in life, so I’m praying to get closer to God and I want to break through and we use this word a lot and a lot of categories that even in church we’ve done it through worship. Sometimes we’ll be standing and worshiping to God and and pastor Archie or whoever’s leading worship will say, Hey, if you need this breakthrough today, let’s just go a little bit deeper and, and, and go concentration and meditation to what God wants to do. Let’s get a breakthrough. Let’s go to the other side. And most of us are looking for them. The breakthrough. We’re looking for a breakthrough, whether it might be spiritual, but most of us are looking through for a breakthrough maybe in financial world, in our health. Some of you need a breakthrough in health today. I know that there are some staff members that we have right now that need a breakthrough and health and that you may be in the same way.
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You may be in a marriage that’s just stuck and you need a breakthrough maritally or you need a breakthrough with your children because they’re, you’re not on speaking terms if you have adult children or you just can’t grasp what this generation is and how you’re going to raise your small chin. Dedicating little Denise this morning, what is she going to face in five or six years in the culture today? We need a breakthrough to be able to do that properly and with God and with the guidance. Maybe you need a breakthrough in your career. Maybe you need a breakthrough. As I said earlier, spiritually, well, what is a breakthrough because we do use that term a lot. Let me give you the definition that I looked it up and I looked it up in the dictionary and also in a spiritual sense. So write this down.
A breakthrough is a sudden dramatic and important advance a sudden dramatic and important. Advance science has had breakthroughs. Thank God for that. Medicine has had breakthroughs. Thank God for that and for the medical breakthroughs that we’ve had to keep us healthy and alive and vibrant. Some of you in your careers have had breakthroughs and you’ve gone from one place to another, whether you change careers or within that career, and some of you, even in your finances, you’ve had breakthroughs, you’ve been in major debt and you’ve done something about it, and we have all kinds of ways that we can give you those breakthrough through financial peace. That’s what a breakthrough is. A sudden dramatic, important advance. However, the opposite of a breakthrough is a setback.
If you’re, if you’re not going forward, that’s the advanced part and you’re stuck. There’s no progress. You’re stalled out whether it is in your marriage. Some of us may feel that today it might be you spirits. I talked to a a, an enormous amount of people feel stuck spiritually who say things like, we had this conference in, in our small group. Like I haven’t really heard God in a long time. I’m just stuck. You need a breakthrough. But setbacks occur. There is no progress. You feel stalled, you feel stuck and then nothing is happening and it’s a set back. Now, setbacks can also take you and I to very dark places. We can experience a setback in our relationship and it can take you to a very dark place. Some of you’ve been there and some of you and crowd this may be there as a result of a setback.
Breakthrough moments or moments of clarity when the light comes on into a situation that takes you into a positive direction, that’s a breakthrough moment. Setback moments are those moments that can take you to very dark places or stalled out or no progress or feeling very, very stuck. I’ve had many setbacks in my life. I’ve had many breakthroughs. So if you possibly in both, and you should, and I’m not sure you know how to weigh the two. Probably the biggest breakthrough in my life. I’ve, again, I’ve had many, but probably the biggest breakthrough in my life was years ago as a young man at the age of about 23 maybe 24 years old, I was serving in the military, loved what I did. Now I’m going to go into that, but absolutely loved what I did for the military, but at the same time we were part of a very vibrant church. My wife, Tina and I, and we were being discipled, if you’re familiar with that word. We were being trained and just really under the mentorship of some really solid people and God started whispering in my spirit. I never heard his voice audibly that this wasn’t going to be my career.
Then he was churning me and directing me into what we would call vocational ministry and that’s when I decided to step out of the military. I was really, really unsure what to do, but a breakthrough happening. My wife and I both saw a light of direction and it changed our entire direction of our path of life, and we stepped out of one place into another place and never looked back and never regretted it. That’s a breakthrough. That’s a breakthrough. Now, in the midst of that, we’d had several setbacks as well. Now, because I’m not sure if you’ve figured this out yet in life, many of us in this room are very mature. Some of us aren’t quite there yet, but you’ve experienced this, but you’ve probably figured out that in life, God uses pain to get your attention. Have you ever figured that one out yet?
Sometimes we’re in pain. It’s not just physical pain, it’s emotional pain. It’s all sorts of pain and God’s kind of just kind of getting your attention because as C S Lewis says, you’re familiar with that author, pain is like a megaphone. It’s very loud and you can’t necessarily ignore it. Although we try to in in our generation today, we don’t necessarily ignore it. We medicate it, so therefore we just sweep it away. God will use pain to prepare you for a breakthrough. So today, if you’re in pain, whatever that might be. It could be physical, it could be spiritual, it could be emotional, it could be relational. I want to say to you in a new way, maybe in a new perspective, congratulations, because you’re about ready to have a right through. That’s what God uses all throughout his word. We see that. Matter of fact, look at the screen with me and you might want to write this scripture down. Proverbs chapter 20 verse 30 out of the passion translation says it like this. Painful experiences do wonders to change your life. How many of you agree with that? Painful experiences do wonders to change your life? See, most of us, come on, let’s get on us. We resist change. We don’t like it. We don’t necessarily change when we see the light, we change when we feel the heat.
And we usually don’t change until the fear of change is exceeded by pain. Can I say that again? We usually don’t change until the fear of change is exceeded by our pain. So today you may be sitting here in a place of confusion. You may be sitting here in a place of darkness. You may be sitting here in a place of stuck. I’m just stuck. You may be sitting here today and pain and listen. You may be sitting here today in pain and no one around you even knows it. That’s the dark place. Matter of fact, there have been times in my marriage, I’ve been married 40 years and there’ve been times in my marriage where I’d been in so much pain. I wasn’t sure how to even tell her to communicate this, and there are times we’re sleeping that far apart from each other and I wasn’t able to communicate the pain that I’m in because I’m just not sure how to get out of it.
It’s a dark place to be in that kind of pain. So let me bring this down to where you live and ask this personal question and you can write it down where you are and you can think it in your mind and your heart, but do something with this. Where do you need a breakthrough today? Because all of us probably need it somewhere. We need that sudden dramatic, important advance to go forward because most of us remember change is really difficult and comfort is really good and we need a breakthrough to get out of that comfort place that we’re at. Where do you need a breakthrough today? Here’s what I’ve learned about breakthroughs. Ready to write another thing down. I’ve learned this about breakthroughs and 40 plus years of marriage, 35 years of ministry and just living and trying to be who God wants me to be.
Here’s what I’ve learned about three breakthroughs. They happen when you seek them. Breakthroughs very, very rarely just happen. I have never just received a great, a large amount of money in my mail to get me out of debt for no reason for whatsoever, and that’s just the financial part and very few people have ever come up to me for no reason and looked in my eyes and said, I want to write you a check for $20,000 just because I love you. I don’t have people that love me that much in my life. I mean, if I do, they’re not that wealthy to do that. Breakthroughs don’t just happen. You have to seek them and that’s what makes it a discipline and that’s what makes the discipline of fasting come alive. It just comes alive. You have to seek this to happen in your life. Psalm 72 verse two look at the screens with me again out of the passion translation, the Psalmist says, when I was deep distress in deep distress in my day of trouble, I reached out for you with hands stretched out to heaven.
You want to, you want to know Casey, why we raised our hands in church cause it’s in the Bible. There’s times you just raise your hands out to God and say, I need you. I surrender to you. He says, over and over I kept looking for you. Oh God. And Psalm 88 and verse nine if you go a little further, the Psalmist says, my eyes are blinded by my tears. You ever been there before? My eyes are blinded by my tears. Each day I begged for your help a Lord I lift up my hands to your mercy. Why am I showing you this? Because here’s somebody seeking after God for a breakthrough. And what you’re seeing here with hands lifted up and what you’re seeing here with voices just shouting out to God and write it in on page, is you’re seeing a physical approach to receive a spiritual breakthrough.
You’re seeing someone seek after it with a spiritual approach. This is a physical approach to a spiritual release, if you will. And that in the in in in a sense is what the discipline of fasting is all about. So write this down. The discipline of fasting is a discipline, denial of normal physical function, okay? For the sake of intense spiritual activity, it’s physical. Again, you just can’t say, I want this breakthrough. You’ve got to go after it physically. You’ve got to seek it physically. Something in you physically has to start or stop. It’s a physical moment. Let me use the story of an old Testament to illustrate this. And some of you are familiar with this, but you don’t even have to go there and just write the reference down. Exodus 17. So you can talk about it in your small group, but just give you some of you know.
But this is a really cool story. If you don’t know, Moses and the Israelites were facing the Amalekites an enemy. And so Moses asked God, what do I do? And this was immediately after God had just let water flow from a rock. All kinds of things because Moses hit the rock. All sorts of things was happening. But the mallet tights were beginning to defeat them. And Moses said, what do I do? God said, go up to the mountain. Here we go. And lift up your hands. And as long as Moses, his hands were lifted up. According to Exodus 17 the Bible says that they prevailed over the Amalekites. A spiritual breakthrough was happening because of a physical posture. Moses was taken. Are you with me? Church? A physical posture created a spiritual breakthrough. And the Bible says that every time he dropped his hands out of weariness or we couldn’t hold him off, the Amalekites would prevail over the Israelites.
So every time he raised his hands, the Israelites prevailed. Every time he dropped his hands, the Amalekites would prevail. And so Aaron and her two friends of Moses, two liters of Moses got underneath him and held his hands up. The power of community is seen in this physical breakthrough when they held his hands up because they knew that the hands up meant something physically but released something spiritually. It’s a powerful story. What he did with his body had tremendous results in the spiritual realm. So here’s the point. Write it down. Write it down. Big physical obedience brings spiritual release. Physical obedience brings spiritual release. It brings breakthrough. This story is an awesome illustration of what we do physically and what can happen spiritually. They connect friends, they connect. Breakthrough victory was released in that battle because of a way Moses postured himself.
So listen, don’t ever, I’m just challenging you. I’m just going to tell you like it is. Don’t ever sit in the place where you are and ask, well, why do we raise our hands? That’s not him. I don’t have to raise my hands. No, you don’t have to raise your hands. God is not the, you know, the operator of robots. He doesn’t want you to do anything you don’t want to do. But guys, a physical posture can bring spiritual release. So question, when God says to do something and when you do something physical, it will bring a spiritual breakthrough. Whether that means kneeling on your knees, whether it’s getting down on your face before God standing when no one else wants to stand, or just raising your hands, or maybe sometimes here’s what the Bible says, shout out with a loud voice. Just shout. You know that there were times when the Israelites were marching, coming up against the enemy, that they never used a weapon.
The Bible says, God said, just shout praise. And in their shout of praise, that physical posture of shouting brought spiritual victory. And sometimes here’s what we will say. I’ll cover this a little bit. Getting a little ahead of myself. We’ll say, well, that’s just not my personality. Well, God wants to break through even your own personality to bring spiritual victory, spiritual release. And again, some will argue, I don’t have to do that again. No, you don’t have to do it, but I need you to remember, physical obedience brings spiritual breakthroughs. Physical obedience brings spiritual release, and if Moses raising his hands could bring victory in and listen in in an old covenant, what would it do under a new covenant? When Jesus showed us the power of a physical posture, when he fasted for 40 days to bring a spiritual release, what would that do for us if we just gave and surrendered everything to God?
Not just say it, not just saying it, but actually did. See today, listen, listen. Today, the church, the church, not just this church, the church at large, we would like to say sometimes the capital C church, the church at large, especially in the Western world where we’re very familiar and where we live, the church has reduced most everything down to the way we feel and intellect, feelings, and intellect. The church has reduced it to that. Well, I, I just feel like I’m okay with God in my heart. I don’t really have to raise my hands. I feel okay with God. I just feel everything’s fine. I don’t need to really do what they’re asking me to do to the obedience of giving anything. I don’t, I don’t have to do that. I feel, Oh God, I are okay. I feel that’s okay. You know, I feel in my heart that I have faith. I feel that in my heart that I have faith. I feel that. So I don’t have to take any risks not to do that. Or we will say I don’t really understand that. I’m sure that I understand what they’re saying so I’m not sure I want to do it cause I don’t understand it. Feelings and intellect
You know, as I said earlier, I’ve been married to Tina, my wife who is sitting on the front row for over 40 years.
And I’ll be quite honest with you, I didn’t stay married for 40 years because I, I said to her, Hey, I feel like I love you. I’m never going to really show you that. I love you with actions. How long do you think that’s the last, or I told you I loved you back the day we got married. If anything changes, I’ll just kind of let you know.
I mean, we feel in with people, but when you feel in love with people, let me ask you this honest question. Is that ever enough? No. At times you have to show them. You’ve got to physically demonstrate the power of your love, the power of your feelings, but yet in church we will say things like, well, I feel okay with God. I don’t need to do that. I don’t need, it’s not my personality to do that. No, it may not be, but God wants to move you past your comfort to bring a spiritual release into something that only God can do, that you can do physically. Whether that’s shouting it out, singing it out, left in your hands, whatever it might be, it may be even fasting, everything. There are times God will ask you for a physical act and that physical act take obedience and it will bring spiritual breakthrough and there are times God will do that and pointed out, and these messages are part of that time for us.
There’s a connection between the physical act of obedience guys and spiritual breakthrough. There’s a connection there and it’s a release. I’m going to use some words that you may be familiar with or you may not be familiar with, but you may want to write them down so that you can discuss them in your small group because there’s a connection between the physical act of obedience and spiritual release of here it is. Ready favor the favor of God, the protection of God. Are you with me? The healing of God? Do you know most times when Jesus healed someone, it was the fact that he said, do something physically and healing will happen. Hold out your hand. Ghost. Take a step. Go wash yourself. There was physical action taking place in the healings, in the favor and the protection and the blessing and the help of those that Jesus was covering and sharing with.
Now listen, you need to understand this and I got to take a little bit of time in this to explain this. There’s a difference between God’s love and God’s favor. I’m not talking about God loving you. I’m talking about God favoring you. God blessing you, God protecting you. Are you with me? There’s a major difference between the love of God and the favor of God. You can do nothing to earn God’s love. You can do nothing to take away God’s love. He will love you the same no matter what he loved us from the beginning. He loved us so much. He sent his only son who stretched out his arms and died on a cross for you and you can’t buy that, earn that, and you can’t sell it. Good enough for a tap happen to you. That’s God’s love. He loves you. 24 seven love you. Unconditional type of love but favor, blessing that’s given on an increase based on our stewardship. Are you with me? Love of God full and free. He loves you and will never stop loving you and there’s nothing you can do to make him stop loving you favor and increase of favor comes as you obey and you just need to hear that deeply. This morning. It comes as you obey. You can’t buy God’s favor, but it doesn’t come in abundance without sacrifice.
Increase a favor comes through obedience and sacrifice. Breakthrough happens there. Obedience and sacrifice. The discipline to set aside your selfishness, my selfishness, the discipline to set aside your personal desire, your personal comfort, whatever that might be, even your personal pleasure.
The difference is setting aside the distractions. You know, make most of the time when I come up here, even when I’m not speaking and I’m just praying for Greg or Archie to come up and speak, I will normally pray. God, get us away from distractions. Take the distractions from us because see favor and protection and God’s blessings happen. When you set aside distractions, you set aside selfishness, you set aside personal preference, you set aside all those things to go after God and God alone. That’s what fasting is all about. This word, fasting is not a bad word. Only in America has it become bad in a spiritual sense. We’ve actually shifted it now from spiritually to health. You hear all kinds of people say, well, I’m intermittently fasting so that I can get healthier or lose weight. It has nothing to do with the spiritual life.
And so we’ve, we’ve allowed it to shift from the spiritual favor that it can bring the spiritual breakthrough that can happen so that it can do something in us with vanity, not spiritually. So what is fasting all about? Fasting is all about less of you and more of him. That’s what fasting is all about. Less of you and more of him, less of desirable pleasure and more of him. I’ll just give you a Daniel chapter 10 talk about it in your groups this week. Daniel chapter 10 he postured himself physically fast it in such a way that he took away desirable foods for 21 days and at the very beginning of that posturing himself when he got rid of the desirable foods and just became a vegetarian essentially for 21 days. What need anything that the King was offering. God heard him at the beginning of that and there was a few study.
Daniel chapter 10 Jenn Daniel, chapter 11 all done. God released spiritually in Daniel’s, something that would not have released without this physical posturing. So let me close today. Let me show you real quickly and I want you to go, I’m going to put it up on the screens, but write down Matthew 17 cause I want to show you this story in Matthew 17 this is not a parable. This actually happened. This is in Jesus’s life. And Matthew 17 Jesus comes down from a mountaintop with three of his friends. We call them disciples. If you’re been around church for a while, you may have heard this term, it was the transfiguration. You’ve heard that term before. This has just happened and they’d come down from the mountain and they’re kind of all fire for God, but at the bottom of the mountain, something’s happening. The other disciples of of Jesus is at the bottom of the mountain and there’s a father at the bottom of the mountain and his son is, is really struggling with epilepsy and having fits and rages through this disease that’s eating his body up.
And the father says, Hey, there’s times when he goes into seizures and he’s thrown into a fire. He doesn’t even know what he’s doing because he’s in these seizures and in Jesus comes down, the father runs after Jesus because he knows who Jesus says. He says, Leslie, can you do something to heal my son? I have taken them him to your disciples and they could do nothing with him. Now I just need you to keep that in mind. His disciples, not the three that were with him, but the others that weren’t at the bottom of the mountain and they could do nothing with him. And in verse 17 Matthew 17 Jesus and hearing that from the father says these words, and he’s speaking to his disciples. Look at these words. Say, sometimes we don’t want our toe stepped on in church. Jesus didn’t care cause he knew that there were times you had to be challenged to have a breakthrough.
Are you with me? And he says, these words, you unbelieving and perverse generation. Now remember he’s talking to his disciples, not religious people out there, his disciples, you perverse and unbelieving generation. How long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy here to me and then he heals the child. In that moment. You go down into verse 21 and he is explaining how he could heal the child through this. And he says this, and verse 21 this kind only comes out. There’s only a healing. There’s only a breakthrough. There’s only a victory in this moment. When you pray and say it loud fast, that wasn’t loud enough. You guys are sort of struggling with the fingernails down a chalkboard. Come on. This kind only happens when you pray and fast. This is from the mouth of Jesus. There are some breakthroughs in your life that are only going to happen. You can cry, you can scream, you can beat on the wall, you can come to church, you can worship, you can do everything that you know a powerful to do. There’s some breakthroughs that are only gonna happen through prayer and fasting, and that is a physical posturing of yourself to get rid of you and get more of him. And that’s from the mouth of Jesus.
Jesus says in verse 17 the first reason that this doesn’t happen is through your unbelief, your unbelief. Now, can I remind you? He is talking to his disciples. That’s a head scratcher. Your unbelief. What is this unbelief he’s talking about? The unbelief he’s talking about is simply you are too disconnected from God. Unbelief happens when you are disconnected from God. What do you mean disconnect from God? You’re disconnected from his word. You may be reading his word, but you’re not diving deep into the transformation of his word. It’s just a check off point for you. Are you with me? You’re disconnected from his word. You’re disconnected from worship. You might be worshiping, but listen, this, you’re not gonna like this one, but you might be worshiping your worship. What does that mean? You’re worshiping your style. You’re worshiping your preference. If something happens in the song doesn’t, you don’t like it or it’s not your preference or it’s a little bit too old fashion, a little bit to modernize, you’re like, Oh, why did I sing this song? I’m not singing that song. That’s a crazy song and the song has such glorious words to it that just app
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And honors God, but you’re not seeing it cause it’s not your prep that’s worshiping your worship and you’re disconnected from that and visit. That’s how, that’s where unbelief comes from. Sometimes you’re disconnected. This place should be packed out, but there are times we’re disconnected from the body and unbelief happens when we’re not joining together. See, if this finger ever separates from this hand, my hand will never be the same again. It will never function the same again as sometimes the body. That’s what Jesus calls us as the gathering the church. We’re missing members of our body and sometimes we got to place where we don’t care, but unbelief can happen when we disconnect from one another and there’s strong SANEs about that in his truth or disconnected from actually hungry after God. Are you with me? Am I making sense? This is the words of Jesus. He says, a disbelief comes from when you’re disconnected from God and then he says you perverse. You know what? We get the word for fraud. We get the word preferred it from this word, the none of you would ever want me to stand up here and say you’re perverted. You would be offended by that. But I’m not saying that Jesus’s. So don’t look at the messenger. Look at the guy who actually said, why did he say this? SI unbelief happens when you’re disconnected from God. Perverse perversion happens when you are too connected to the [inaudible].
And let’s get real today. Many of us in this room, way too connected to the world. You’re not in it. You really are. It’s time today. Maybe disconnect. How do we do this? Prayer fasting. It’s amazing to me that as a church we can call a prayer meeting. Let’s come and pray together on Thursday night cause we’ve got some, I mean just we need to really hear God. We’ve got some directional issues. We need to bring healing to people and we’ll call a prayer meeting on Thursday night, but most of us will be too busy to come out on Thursday night and we’ll have a room of about 10 people. Now I’m getting into your kitchen right now, but we’ll come out and say, Hey, we’re going to have a worship concert and we’re going to bring in like, you know the you named the worship Jesus culture. We’re going to bring in Hillsong worship and this place we’re going move the curtains back, open the balcony up and have an overflow room because Jesus culture at Hillsong’s in the place. What’s the difference?
Some things only happen. Prayer, fast physical posture that I’m challenging you today to get it to connect back to God through prayer and fast. Not just get something from him. Connect back to him. Are you with me? God is not a vending machine in the sky that we punched. Buttons have to connect back to you. And when you connect to it, God, you disconnect from the world. So I’ll give you something to do this week. Just preach this and yell this sermon at you today cause I feel like I really preached it and yelled at you today. So let me give you something structural to do because us and not every one of us in here can fast food. Cause you may have a medical mission and your doctor says [inaudible], there’s certain kinds of foods you cannot use wisdom. So I want to give you a couple of ways to fast this week. So what’d you pull your phones out? Everybody. Now this not too often, that preacher says, pull your phone out in church. So you’ve got my permission. Come on, pull it out. I know you it with you. Pull your phone out. I am Brahma in a very rarely do. Just put your phone, okay.
And had a couple of volunteers write this thing up. Send it to a service that most of what’s happening in us that connects us to the world too much and disconnects us from God. Way too much is happening right here in our brains. Our visit stuff starts here. So created a way for you to fast negative thoughts this week. All of us deal with negative thoughts like you’re not good enough. You’re not spiritual enough. You’re not disabled from the novel. You never go. We were going to fast negative thoughts, but if you fast something to see fasting’s not about just taking something the no way, it’s about replacing that with something of truth. Are you with me? So this week, if you text this number and all you have to do three, three, seven, seven, seven techs, three, three you can do it right now. Three, three, 777 and all you have to do is text the word fast or fasting.
Either way. Immediately you’re going to get a message back and every day, this week at 6:00 AM, it’s going to come on your phone. The negative thought. We’re fasting that day as a family and the replacement truths and scriptures to put into you and you have to do this. This is a physical, they will bring a spiritual release. Have you done it yet? We’re just looping it so you can get it. Now you can do that. Some of you, you may want to go one step further and you may want to fast food that’s desirable for one day this week, maybe every day this week you want to fast a meal, a desire full meal and replace it with scripture. Replace it with prayer, replace it with connecting to God. This week, just one meal each day. Every one of us can do this, but you can also fast food. You can fast media. Somebody yesterday actually said to me, we were talking about this [inaudible]. I’ll get a little highlight. My [inaudible] just so you know what Facebook [inaudible] messenger did to the world on social media. He said, I’m fascinated for the rest of my life. It’s just I’m going to do it. You may want to fast social media for a week, a couple of days. You know what fasting will do guys, and you may hear this in your group and then I’m going to shut up and close and we’re going to worship. Fasting will really tell you what you’re connected.
Really. It really will. Such just wanting to give you those physical, physical things that you could walk out of here with an application to become closer to God and spiritual discipline, which is a guaranteed place of spiritual transformation. Can I pray for you? And then we’re just going to worship. Father God, thank you for you.
It is again, as I said earlier, more than we can imagine more than we can comprehend. As we look at this today, I thank you for speaking to us the truth. It’s not always what we want to hear. It’s always what we need to hear to become more like the God. There may be people in this room today, they have never given their life over to you to even start this thing or they have, but they’ve sort of kind of walked into this neutral, easy mindset and I just prayed that you’ve given courage to cross over that line today. Give their life to you today, once and for all, and begin this path, this journey. Teach them to get into GRU. Give them the courage to come up to somebody. Way spiritual closeness with you. Now with every eye closed right now, just feel compelled and I know pushing the limit here. Maybe we can just sing a little bit. I just feel like I should ask. If you’ve never given your life over to Jesus as Lord and savior, maybe this isn’t even making sense to you.
If that’s you and you need to give your life to Christ, maybe you need to take the step and give your life back to rise because you’ve fallen away. You’re way too connected to the world and very little bit to God. Maybe that’s you. Would you either those today have courage with every eye closed. I’m not going to ask you to stand. I’m not going to ask you to come anywhere. Would you just raise your hand if that’s you? You need to give your life to Christ you, sir. Thank you sir. Yes. Or you just need to come back cause you’re just too connected to the world. Thank you. You can put your hand right back down. Thank you, ma’am. Thank you, sir. Hey ma’am. Thank you, sir. Yes, thank you, sir.
Would you just say the simple prayer? This is the start of the journey. It’s not the conclusion, but it starts at just a prayer. You can say this right where you are, Jesus, I give you my life today. All of it sets up. I give you my life today, right now, all I surrender to you walk away from that which I’m connected to. It’s keeping me from to come back to you. Jesus.