Archive for April, 2009

Working on the Inside

April 17, 2009

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I was reading the story of Jonah in my quiet time this week and God just showed up and showed me some great insight.  Jonah is this prophet who heard Gods voice, and after hearing Gods voice RAN AWAY.   I don’t know about you but the one thing I am longing for in life is to hear Gods voice to give me direction.  The interesting thing of the story is that the reason he ran was because he did not want to do what God was calling him to do.

I think that you and I are very similar this way.  We so badly want to hear Gods voice if it is what , but if it isn’t we question whether it was really God or just some pizza we ate last night.  I believe that God is calling us to do all kinds of things in life that we don’t want to do that will really help others.  Jonah was called to go to Ninevah and proclaim Gods judgement so the people would repent.  Sounds like a good thing to me, people coming back to God, but I don’t think the point of the story was truly to have Ninevah repent but was really about the condition of Jonah’s heart.  See Jonahs heart had become hardened for people, which is the very heart of God.  So I think in Gods infinite wisdom he called Jonah to move on His behalf so He could do a work from the inside out.

God is in the business of working on the outside circumstances of helping people so He can do an incredible work on the inside of us.

  • What is that thing that God has called you to do that you are running from?
  • Who do you need to help so God can help you?
  • Where do you need to go so God can take you where you need to end up?

Let’s not just want to hear Gods voice but lets run to and not away from what He tells us to do.

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How is your FRUIT?

April 10, 2009

I was with an amazing pastor yesterday named Stan Mitchell from Gracepointe Church in Nashville. He said something in our conversation that really rocked me;

“Fruit unused spoils.”
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So many times do you and I have gifts and talents that we should be using but because of fear, failure or just laziness we just allow our talents to go to waste. It makes me think of the parable of the talents. The ones who used their talents were given more or they produced more fruit. Then their was the one who did nothing with his talent and what happened to him, he not only didn’t produce any gain but it was taken away. It was spoiled, it was no good so it was lost.

What talent, gift or dream has God given you that you have been doing nothing with? What is the area of life that you need to start investing your time and energy in?

I believe that God is up to something big for Coastal Community Church. I have been in Nashville and Birmingham this past week meeting with pastors and potential donors and am just finding some great favor. I am so excited how God is just opening doors in relationships and finances. Believe God for BIG things and you’ll find that he is up to GREATER THINGS than your big things.

Great News

April 7, 2009

This process of planting a church has been a real stretch of my faith. It was really easy to say “Just believe that God will take care of it” to others, but now I am truly having to live out those words. The thing is that if a word or vision is not from God then in most cases the fear will keep you from moving forward in that direction. I know for me this has been so true. If this vision to start a life-giving church in Ft. Lauderdale was not from God I truly know that I would have quit a while ago. I was reading in Proverbs this morning and it says in verse 17:3

“Fire tests the purity of silver and gold, but the Lord tests the heart.”

This is so true, when we start walking out what we think is from God or is from Him through the fires of the process we find out if it something from God or just a good idea. Mark Batterson once said that he would rather have 1 God Idea than 100 good ideas. I believe that if we get a vision from God then when we go through the tests, what is left is a sincere and pure heart for what He wants. See, we live in a world of silver and gold and that is typically what we strive for but more than anything God wants for you and I to find His heart in all matters, so that means that we will go through the fiery trials of life.

Over the past couple of weeks I have personally gotten to experience this with trying to find a location for Coastal Community Church. We thought that we were going to get Monarch High School but it seemed like we were hitting one road block after another. In fact two weeks ago I was sure that there was no way we were going to get that school and every other location that I looked at was not a good fit for a new church. I was pretty discouraged to say the least, but I still believed that God had called us here and that this was a purifying moment of getting rid of fear to totally trust. The next week I got a call from the church that was meeting in the school who was moving out and they said that after I had met with their pastor that they really wanted us to take over their lease on the school and not only that but that they wanted to give us most of their portable equipment because they would no longer be using it. God blew our socks off with all of this news.

So many times God allows us to go through the fire to purify our hearts.

What fire are you going through today?
How is God trying to purify your thoughts and motives through this fire?

Listen, God is up to something BIG in each and every one of our lives. Don’t give up, press on through the fire and see what God will do in your heart and life, He is probably up to GREATER THINGS.