Preparing to Hear

Uncategorized
Proverbs 3:6 (MSG)
6 Listen for God’s voice in everything you do, everywhere you go;
    he’s the one who will keep you on track.
Luke 8:5-8 (NIV)
5 “A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path; it was trampled on, and the birds ate it up.
6 Some fell on rocky ground, and when it came up, the plants withered because they had no moisture.
7 Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up with it and choked the plants.
8 Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown.”
When he said this, he called out, “Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear.”
1. The “Tempted” Heart
Luke 8:12 (NIV)
12 Those along the path are the ones who hear, and then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved.
1 Corinthians 10:13 (NIV)
13 No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.
2. The “Distracted” Heart
Luke 8:13 (NIV)
13 Those on the rocky ground are the ones who receive the word with joy when they hear it, but they have no root. They believe for a while, but in the time of testing they fall away.
Luke 10:39-40 (NIV)
39 She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he
said.
40 But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”
3. The “Immature” Heart
Luke 8:14 (NIV)
14 The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature.
Hebrews 6:1 (NIV)
1 Therefore let us move beyond the elementary teachings about Christ and be taken forward to maturity …
4. The “Prepared” Heart
Luke 8:15 (NIV)
15 But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop.
How Can I Prepare My Heart To Hear God’s Voice Clearly?
1. Keep It Clean
Forgive, Forgive, Forgive
2. Remove Any Distractions
How’s Your “Screen Time” With Jesus?
3. Commit To Growth
Healthy Things Grow

Your Next Step

Uncategorized
Ephesians 4:11-15 (NIV)
11 So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers,
12 to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up
13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.
14 Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming.
15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.
Next Steps Take You Towards Maturity
Hebrews 6:1-2 (NIV)
1 Therefore let us move beyond the elementary teachings about Christ and be taken forward to maturity, not laying again the foundation of repentance from acts that lead to death, and of faith in God,
2 instruction about cleansing rites, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment.
Next Steps Wind Up Towards Jesus
Proverbs 15:24 (NKJV)
24 The way of life winds upward for the wise,
That he may turn away from hell below.
3 Barriers To Taking Next Steps
Our Past
2 Corinthians 5:17 (NIV)
17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!
Our Old Way Of Thinking
Luke 5:37-39 (NKJV)
37 And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; or else the new wine will burst the wineskins and be spilled, and the wineskins will be ruined. 38 But new wine must be put into new wineskins, [a]and both are preserved. 39 And no one, having drunk old wine, [b]immediately desires new; for he says, ‘The old is [c]better.’ ”
Our Doubt
Jeremiah 1:5-7 (NIV)
5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”
6 “Alas, Sovereign Lord,” I said, “I do not know how to speak; I am too young.”
7 But the Lord said to me, “Do not say, ‘I am too young.’ You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you.
What Is Your Next Step?
Getting Planted in a Local Church
Sunday Attendance
Declaring Your Faith Publicly
Baptism
Putting God First
Tithing
Getting Sharp
Connect Group
Discovering Your Gifts
Grow Course
Make a Difference
Dream Team
Reaching The Lost
Outreach and Invitation
Helping Others Grow
Leadership

My Journey from Poverty to Overflow

Uncategorized
(John 7:37-39 CSB)
On the last and most important day of the festival, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. (38) The one who believes in me, as the Scripture has said, will have streams of living water flow from deep within him. (39) He said this about the Spirit. Those who believed in Jesus were going to receive the Spirit, for the Spirit had not yet been given because Jesus had not yet been glorified.
(John 5:2-7 NIV)
Now there is in Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate a pool, which in Aramaic is called Bethesda and which is surrounded by five covered colonnades. (3) Here a great number of disabled people used to lie—the blind, the lame, the paralyzed. [4] (5) One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. (6) When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, “Do you want to get well?” (7) “Sir,” the invalid replied, “I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.”
Jesus: “Do you want to get well?”
Sick Man: “I have no-one to help me…”
1.Poverty mentality (Victim Mentality) often starts early
2.Poverty is often very real (but not always).
3.Poverty hangs around with poverty. (bimbogami – Japanese Poverty fairy story)
4.Poverty doesn’t know the way out till there’s another way shown.
1.Jesus’ Overflow
(John 10:10 NIV)
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
(2 Corinthians 8:9 NIV)
For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.
2.New Heart:
(Ezekiel 36:26-27 NIV)
I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. (27) And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.
3.See New Models – New Decisions – New Outcomes. “God Loves You And So Do I”
(Romans 12:1-3 NIV)
Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. (2) Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. (3) For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you.
(Proverbs 11:24-25 MSG)
The world of the generous gets larger and larger; the world of the stingy gets smaller and smaller. The one who blesses others is abundantly blessed; those who help others are helped.

Overflow with Generosity

Uncategorized
(John 7:37-39 CSB)
On the last and most important day of the festival, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. (38) The one who believes in me, as the Scripture has said, will have streams of living water flow from deep within him. (39) He said this about the Spirit. Those who believed in Jesus were going to receive the Spirit, for the Spirit had not yet been given because Jesus had not yet been glorified.
Q: What sort of God is our Jesus?
A: He is a generous God
(John 3:16 NIV)
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
(Romans 5:8 NIV)
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
(Luke 6:38 NIV)
Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.
God’s generosity changes people – makes them generous
Zacchaeus
(Luke 19:5-10)
When Jesus reached the spot, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.” (6) So he came down at once and welcomed him gladly. (7) All the people saw this and began to mutter, “He has gone to be the guest of a sinner.” (8) But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.” (9) Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. (10) For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
{Graeme and Lurleen Kirkwood}
Blind Bartimaeus
(Mark 10:48-52 NIV)
Many rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” (49) Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” So they called to the blind man, “Cheer up! On your feet! He’s calling you.” (50) Throwing his cloak aside, he jumped to his feet and came to Jesus. (5) “What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him. The blind man said, “Rabbi, I want to see.” (52) “Go,” said Jesus, “your faith has healed you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road.
{{{Watoto}}}
Lifehouse Church: Tejas Asia in New Delhi.
How do we become generous?
1.His power to change hearts
(Ezekiel 36:26-27 NIV)
I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. (27) And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.
2.His presence
(Galatians 5:22-23 NIV)
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, (23) gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

Overflow With Peace

Uncategorized
(John 7:37-39 CSB)
On the last and most important day of the festival, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. (38) The one who believes in me, as the Scripture has said, will have streams of living water flow from deep within him. (39) He said this about the Spirit. Those who believed in Jesus were going to receive the Spirit, for the Spirit had not yet been given because Jesus had not yet been glorified.
(John 14:27 NIV)
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
(Luke 8:48 NIV)
Then he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace.”
(Luke 8:48 TLV)
He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in shalom.”
We hold and speak that peace
(Matthew 10:12-13 NIV)
As you enter the home, give it your greeting. (13) If the home is deserving, let your peace rest on it; if it is not, let your peace return to you.
1.What about ‘I’ve just lost my peace”
(Colossians 3:15 NIV)
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.
(Philippians 4:7 NIV)
And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
2.What about “I don’t feel God’s peace”
(Deuteronomy 31:6 NIV)
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”
(Hebrews 13:5b CSB)
‘for he himself has said: “I will never leave you (loosen the grip on you) or abandon you”’
(Deuteronomy 31:6)
He will never leave you or abandon you

Gifts – (Part 2)  7 Men – Overflow with Gifts 

Uncategorized
(John 7:37-39 CSB)
On the last and most important day of the festival, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. (38) The one who believes in me, as the Scripture has said, will have streams of living water flow from deep within him. (39) He said this about the Spirit. Those who believed in Jesus were going to receive the Spirit, for the Spirit had not yet been given because Jesus had not yet been glorified.
(Romans 12:6 NIV)
We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith;
Grace – Gift —> Joy (all words are rooted together and need to be seen together).
Gifts are linked to faith – or putting gifts to work asap – as soon as possible.
The Problem
(Acts 6:1-2 NIV)
In those days when the number of disciples was increasing, the Hellenistic Jews among them complained against the Hebraic Jews because their widows were being overlooked in the daily distribution of food. (2) So the Twelve gathered all the disciples together and said, “It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God in order to wait on tables.
The Solution = 7 Men with Management and People gifts
(Acts 6:3-6 NIV)
Brothers and sisters, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them (4) and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word.” (5) This proposal pleased the whole group. They chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit; also Philip, Procorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas from Antioch, a convert to Judaism. (6) They presented these men to the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them.
-skill, faith, wisdom, prayer
The Result
(Acts 6:7-8 NIV)
So the word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly, and a large number of priests became obedient to the faith. (8) Now Stephen, a man full of God’s grace and power, performed great wonders and signs among the people.
-Some became ministers and some did not
-ALL blessed to be part of the miracle of the church.
(Jeremiah 29:11 NIV)
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Shake Off That Snake

Uncategorized

-You can’t stop ‘snakebites’ in life, but you can stop the venom hurting you in Jesus Christ!

1.The Shipwreck

(Acts 28:1-2 NIV)
Once safely on shore, we found out that the island was called Malta. (2) The islanders showed us unusual kindness. They built a fire and welcomed us all because it was raining and cold.

-Paul landed on the beach in good heart and ready for the next season. (Not a victim but an overcomer)

-People showed “NOT ordinary kindness” – Kindness that “Hit the spot” “Hit the bullseye”

-God will give back in great relationships forged in the darkness. Treasures in the darkness.

2.The Snakebite

(Acts 28:3-6 NIV)
Paul gathered a pile of brushwood and, as he put it on the fire, a viper, driven out by the heat, fastened itself on his hand. (4) When the islanders saw the snake hanging from his hand, they said to each other, “This man must be a murderer; for though he escaped from the sea, the goddess Justice has not allowed him to live.” (5) But Paul shook the snake off into the fire and suffered no ill effects. (6) The people expected him to swell up or suddenly fall dead; but after waiting a long time and seeing nothing unusual happen to him, they changed their minds and said he was a god.

-viper – laid hold of his hand – to attack, seize hold of.

-Bad karma, right? No, God’s will.

serpent, snake, viper.

(literally) a poisonous snake;

(figuratively) incisive words that deliver deadly venom. This switches the bitter for the sweet, light for darkness.

-snakes will bite, but they don’t have to hurt. And we don’t have to accept venom into out lives.

-They kept on expecting him to die. They kept on looking, they kept on seeing ‘nothing out of place’.

(Luke 10:19 NIV)
I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.

-Over time, they changed their minds about Paul. (Sometimes it takes time – Outlive your opposition).

3.Our victory opens the door for miracles

(Acts 28:7-9 NIV)
There was an estate nearby that belonged to Publius, the chief official of the island. He welcomed us to his home and showed us generous hospitality for three days. (8) His father was sick in bed, suffering from fever and dysentery. Paul went in to see him and, after prayer, placed his hands on him and healed him. (9) When this had happened, the rest of the sick on the island came and were cured.

{Like us in Seibika investigation. through successful evangelism.

Like Paul and Silas in prison.

Like Good Samaritan. Not bad karma, but a chance for all to help together. (Tejas).

They gave to the people.}

Take-aways:

1.No weapon forged against you shall prosper

(Isaiah 54:17 NIV)
no weapon forged against you will prevail, and you will refute every tongue that accuses you. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and this is their vindication from me,” declares the Lord.

2.Tearing down that dominating thing in your life

(2 Corinthians 10:3-5 NIV)
For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. (4) The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. (5) We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.

3. And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to his purpose

(Romans 8:28 NIV)
And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to his purpose

4.Fight the good fight of faith

(2 Timothy 4:7 NIV)
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.

Gifts Part 1 Bezalel – Overflowing in the Gift of Creativity

Uncategorized

(John 7:37-38 CSB)
On the last and most important day of the festival, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. (38) The one who believes in me, as the Scripture has said, will have streams of living water flow from deep within him.

(Romans 12:6 NIV)
We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith;

Grace- Gift —> Joy (all words are rooted together and need to be seen together).

Gifts are linked to faith – or putting gifts to work asap – as soon as possible.

The Story of Bezalel

Chosen: Heb: ‘called by name’ Bezalel (protected by God), son of Uri (fiery)

(Exodus 35:30 NIV)
Then Moses said to the Israelites, “See, the Lord has chosen Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah,

(Ephesians 1:4 NIV)
For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love

-Totally Filled (overflow) with the Holy Spirit.

(Exodus 35:31a NIV)
and he has filled him with the Spirit of God,

-Totally filled with skill, ability and understanding = any word associated with wisdom – clever, brilliant, smart, perceptive, quick-to-learn, pro-active etc.

(Exodus 35:31b-33 NIV)
with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills— 32 to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, (33) to cut and set stones, to work in wood and to engage in all kinds of artistic crafts.

Filled to overflowing. WHY?

-to see the plan

-to make designs

-to cut the stones

-to shape the wood

-to engage in all types of craftsmanship

(Exodus 35:34 NIV)
And he has given both him and Oholiab son of Ahisamak, of the tribe of Dan, the ability to teach others.

-Completion of all the ‘holy work’ = work and gift set for us.

(Exodus 36:1 NIV)
So Bezalel, Oholiab and every skilled person to whom the Lord has given skill and ability to know how to carry out all the work of constructing the sanctuary are to do the work just as the Lord has commanded.”

-Discover

-Engage and Invest

-Pray

-Faith

Overflow-What Could Happen in a Powerful Worship Moment

Uncategorized

(John 7:38 NIV)
Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.

(John 7:38 CSB)
The one who believes in me, as the Scripture has said, will have streams of living water flow from deep within him.

1.People are looking for freedom from sadness.

(1 Samuel 16:14-17 NIV)
Now the Spirit of the Lord had departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the Lord tormented him. (15) Saul’s attendants said to him, “See, an evil spirit from God is tormenting you. (16) Let our lord command his servants here to search for someone who can play the lyre. He will play when the evil spirit from God comes on you, and you will feel better.” (17) So Saul said to his attendants, “Find someone who plays well and bring him to me.”

2.Overflow – what could happen in a single powerful worship moment.

(1 Samuel 16:18 NIV)
One of the servants answered, “I have seen a son of Jesse of Bethlehem who knows how to play the lyre. He is a brave man and a warrior. He speaks well and is a fine-looking man. And the Lord is with him.”

3.Let’s be hungry to overflow in any worship moment.

(1 Samuel 16:21-23 NIV)
David came to Saul and entered his service. Saul liked him very much, and David became one of his armor-bearers. (22) Then Saul sent word to Jesse, saying, “Allow David to remain in my service, for I am pleased with him.” (23) Whenever the spirit from God came on Saul, David would take up his lyre and play. Then relief would come to Saul; he would feel better, and the evil spirit would leave him.

(Matthew 9:21-22 NIV)
She said to herself, “If I only touch his cloak, I will be healed.” (22) Jesus turned and saw her. “Take heart, daughter,” he said, “your faith has healed you.” And the woman was healed at that moment.

Shout Louder!!!(Bartimaeus)

Uncategorized

(Mark 10:46-52 GNT) They came to Jericho, and as Jesus was leaving with his disciples and a large crowd, a blind beggar named Bartimaeus son of Timaeus was sitting by the road. (47) When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, “Jesus! Son of David! Have mercy on me!” (48) Many of the people scolded him and told him to be quiet. But he shouted even more loudly, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” (49) Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” So they called the blind man. “Cheer up!” they said. “Get up, he is calling you.” (50) So he threw off his cloak, jumped up, and came to Jesus. (51) “What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him. “Teacher,” the blind man answered, “I want to see again.” (52) “Go,” Jesus told him, “your faith has made you well.” At once he was able to see and followed Jesus on the road.

1.Some Moments Have Only One Chance

(Mark 10:46-47 GNT) They came to Jericho, and as Jesus was leaving with his disciples and a large crowd, a blind beggar named Bartimaeus son of Timaeus was sitting by the road. (47) When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, “Jesus! Son of David! Have mercy on me!”

(Ephesians 5:16 NIV) making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.

2.Shout louder!

(Mark 10:48 GNT) Many of the people scolded him and told him to be quiet. But he shouted even more loudly, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”

3.Cheer up and get up!

(Mark 10:49) Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” So they called the blind man. “Cheer up!” they said. “Get up, he is calling you.”

4.Some old things have to be thrown away to get your new thing from God

(Mark 10:50-52 GNT)
So he threw off his cloak, jumped up, and came to Jesus. (51) “What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him. “Teacher,” the blind man answered, “I want to see again.” (52) “Go,” Jesus told him, “your faith has made you well.” At once he was able to see and followed Jesus on the road.

What do you want from God?

-Solomon: ‘Wisdom to rule the people’

(1 Kings 4:29 NIV)
God gave Solomon wisdom and very great insight, and a breadth of understanding as measureless as the sand on the seashore.