Wednesday, 2 November 2016

I HAVE ISSUES!

Recently I did an online test to see if I have issues. After 20 minutes of feeding information about myself I was emailed the results. The good news is that I am not sociopath or schizophrenic or do I have any compulsive disorders. BUT apparently I am moderately anti-social! I guess I do have ISSUES!

I am convinced we all have baggage. We all have issues. Something that is on your mind. Something that we worry about, think about, fret over. We have issues that need to be dealt with. I want to talk to you about your ISSUES based on this account we read in the Word.
-Now a certain woman had a flow of blood for twelve years, and had suffered many things from many physicians. She had spent all that she had and was no better, but rather grew worse. When she heard about Jesus, she came behind Him in the crowd and touched His garment. For she said, If only I may touch His clothes, I shall be made well.Immediately the fountain of her blood was dried up, and she felt in her body that she was healed of the affliction. And Jesus, immediately knowing in Himself that power had gone out of Him, turned around in the crowd and said, Who touched My clothes?But His disciples said to Him, You see the multitude thronging You, and You say, Who touched Me?’ ” And He looked around to see her who had done this thing. But the woman, fearing and trembling, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell down before Him and told Him the whole truth. And He said to her, Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace, and be healed of your affliction.””Mark 5:25-34 NKJV

THE WOMAN WHO HAD AN ISSUE:
Have you ever noticed that this woman’s name is mentioned nowhere? Was her name Sue, Betty, Mary, & Anna? We just don’t know.  Did you notice that she was known by the following description, “The woman with issue of blood?”
That was all the information needed & everyone knew whom the writer was talking about!

In other words, this woman was defined by her ISSUE! Everyone knew her as the woman with the ISSUE…  She wasn’t known by her name. She was totally defined by her ISSUE.
The Bible is filled with others who were known by their issues.
Like Blind Bartimaeus was defined by his issue…THE BLIND GUY! Simone the leper. Zacchaeus the tax collecter. To name only a few!

I wonder, How many of us are defined by our issue?
That’s the woman with the bitter spirit…
That’s the man who was hurt by the pastor...
That’s the boy who’s dad beat him...
That’s the guy/girl that got divorced…
That’s the girl who had an abortion…
That’s the young guy who tried to commit suicide.
That’s the preacher who failed morally...
ISSUES...REAL ISSUES!

Tragically we can become defined by our ISSUE. We walk around wearing our issue like a name-tag.  We become known by our issue. We are become totally wrapped up in what happened to us. ISSUES DEFINE US!
Issues defines our attitude, our actions, the way we talk, the way we behave & the way we believe.
The hurt we suffered 10 years ago today if allowed DEFINES US!

But her issue did more than just define her. Her issue also disqualified her…

Caused her to be an OUTCASTE…because of her state she could not worship. She wasn’t allowed to enter the temple to pursue a closer relationship with God.
Because of her state she couldn’t enter into relationships. She wasn’t allowed to have relations with her husband or her children.
Leviticus 15:25-27, ‘If a woman has a discharge of blood for many days, other than at the time of her customary impurity, or if it runs beyond her usual time of impurity, all the days of her unclean discharge shall be as the days of her customary impurity. She shall be unclean. 26 Every bed on which she lies all the days of her discharge shall be to her as the bed of her impurity; and whatever she sits on shall be unclean, as the uncleanness of her impurity. 27 Whoever touches those things shall be unclean; he shall wash his clothes and bathe in water, and be unclean until evening. -This declares that everything & everyone she touched would be unclean.

She was cut off from God & man. She was cut off from meaningful relationship & service. She was disqualified by her ISSUE...

Sounds like many... Because of their ISSUE... feel disqualified from everything & everyone.
I can’t worship because of what is happening in my life.
I can’t serve, I can’t help with outreach… I can’t pray for you, I can’t minister, I can’t sing, I can’t pray, I can’t impact anyone!
I can’t do anything for God or man because of what is & has happened to me.
I am unable to fulfil my destiny because of my current issue. I am cut off.

THIS WOMAN WAS ISSUE DRIVEN:
I believe this woman was DRIVEN by her ISSUE! ISSUE DRIVEN! The Word says she had tried everything… Vs 25, Now a certain woman had a flow of blood for twelve years, 26 and had suffered many things from many physicians. She had spent all that she had and was no better, but rather grew worse.

I believe that she couldn’t forget about her issue. Imagine every morning for 12 years, 4380 days of her life she woke up knowing she had an ISSUE. Her issue consumed her daily thought life. It was all she could think about…
She couldn’t get it out of her mind. She couldn’t escape it...
While others were relaxing, laughing, joking, & playing games she had an ISSUE.
While the other women were rocking their babies she had an ISSUE!
While other women held her grandchildren she had an ISSUE!
While others talked about the weather she had an ISSUE.
While others went shopping she had an ISSUE.

OTHERS are dancing, shouting, glorifying God but YOU have an ISSUE.
OTHERS are enjoying life but YOU have an ISSUE.
While OTHERS are having a breakthrough around the altar your mind is consumed with YOUR ISSUE.
While OTHERS are fulfilling their destiny you can’t quit thinking about it.
It is on your mind when you wake up & it is the last thing that goes through your mind before you go to sleep.
24/7 it invades your thinking. Thoughts of “How can I get out of this? How can I be free?” YOU ARE DRIVEN BY YOUR ISSUE! 

The Word declares that this woman’s issue had cost her everything. Text, …She had spent all that she had and was no better, but rather grew worse.In fact the Word says she had spent everything she had & still only grew worse. She had tried everything!

William Barclay says that there were at least 11 cures listed in the Talmud for this issue. They ranged from tonics to superstitions such as carry the ashes of an ostrich egg in a linen bag in summer and in a cotton bag in winter, another was to carry a barleycorn, which had been found in the dung of white female donkey. Barclay believes this woman had tried it all but only grew worse. All very difficult & costly...

She was devastated. It cost her all of her energy, her resources, & dignity. Everywhere she went she had to shout, “unclean, unclean”. IMAGINE…every time you walk in a room…UNCLEAN!

Why do you think she snuck up on Jesus, TRYING NOT TO BE NOTICED. She was embarrassed about having to disclose her issue…
Her life had been devastated. It COST her EVERYTHING….

Many of you can relate. YOU have been DEVASTATED by YOUR ISSUE. You have tried everything. You have fasted, prayed, read, & pursued an answer.  It has cost you energy, resources, & your dignity.
-You are EMBARRASSED. You are ASHAMED that you are still dealing with the same ISSUE...

You can’t bear the thought of going to another altar & disclosing your issue only to walk away worse.
You don’t want to be noticed any longer.
Your ISSUE has cost you everything. Friends, self-esteem, faith.
You are devastated & at wits’ end!
You are broken, crushed & exhausted.

THIS WOMAN WAS DESPERATE FOR FREEDOM:
The final thing we must notice about this woman & her ISSUE is that her issue drove her to the point of desperation.

She came to the conclusion that she was so desperate she would take whatever means & actions were necessary to resolve her issue. How many of us have been in that place…
A Chinese man has learned that hell hath no fury like a peeved mother-in-law. Wang Qin,
from Lishui, Shanghai in China, got so sick of her son-in-laws excuses for not paying back
a loan she gave him that she used a crane to winch his car onto her roof terrace, the UK
Daily Mail reported. Wang claimed she loaned her son-in-law nearly half-a-million yuan
(almost $88,000) to invest in his business. However, when he began avoiding her & was
ducking all requests for repayment she decided to take his Audi hostage as collateral.
Initially the car was parked on the pavement outside her house, but when she heard her
son-in-law had been trying to retrieve it she took the extreme measure of winching it onto
her roof terrace. This is clearly one mother-in-law you dont want to mess with.Reporter
doesnt know whether the scrounging son-in-law has repaid his loan or got his car back
yet, but this story just proves that borrowing money from your family only leads to trouble.

This woman with the issue pushed past shame. She pushed past man’s protocol. She pushed past the belief that nothing will ever change.
She was desperate. She was willing to do the unusual to get the unusual!
Her desperation drove her to the divine, positioned her for deliverance.

Take a look at your current issue right now. In your own spirit grow tired of being defined by your issue.

Have you become tired of the thought of being disqualified & driven by your issue. Become desperate in your spirit today.

Have you come to the place where everything within you cries, “I must touch Jesus!” So desperate that you will push through the crowd of men to get to God.
So desperate that if necessary you will run to the altar to touch Him.
Forget mans protocol, mans rules, man’s laughter, & man’s opinion & run head long into the divine.
Touch Him & your current issue will be resolved.

Touch him & your issue will no longer define, disqualify, drive, or devastate you. Are you willing to do whatever it takes? Are you desperate?

“Holy desperation is the door to God’s greatest blessings. Those who proved Him best in the Scripture were at the end of everything.” Vance Havner

Notice also that Jesus didn’t just speak to her health issue. He spoke to her mind & spirit issue. “Go in comfort, go in peace.” If you are desperate you can leave whole & at peace.

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

Avoiding Spiritual Lnad Mines!





LANDMINES
Land-mines: A deadly inheritance! Land-mines represent "an insidious and persistent danger" to children affected by war, says a new United Nations report on the impact of armed conflict on children, by Gra├ža Machel, the UN Secretary-General's Expert on the Impact of Armed Conflict on Children. Children in at least 68 countries are today threatened by what may be the most toxic pollution facing mankind — the contamination by mines of the land they live on. Over 110 million land-mines of various types — plus millions more unexploded bombs, shells and grenades — remain hidden around the world, waiting to be triggered by the innocent and unsuspecting, the report says. Afghanistan, Angola & Cambodia have suffered 85 per cent of the world's land-mine casualties. Overall, African children live on the most mine-plagued continent, with an estimated 37 million mines embedded in the soil of at least 19 countries. Angola alone has an estimated 10 million land-mines & an amputee population of 70,000, of whom 8,000 are children. Since May 1995 children have made up about half the victims of the 50,000-100,000 anti-personnel mines laid in Rwanda.

I also believe that spiritual landmines are something we need to consider… When you are in the heat of spiritual battle, it does not take long to realise that Satan will do anything to prevent you from becoming the person God has planned. However, he does not always employ an all-out frontal assault. Sometimes the danger comes in subtle schemes--landmines hidden along our paths.

These landmines, once detonated, can paralyse us spiritually & stop us from living an abundant & obedient life. Paul warns us “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.” Ephesians 6:10-13 NKJV

COMMON SPIRITUAL LANDMINES!
There a number  spiritual landmines that I would like to consider....

1. THE LANDMINE OF PRIDE! Pride is one of those areas in our lives...hard to see…Pride causes us to put ourselves first…Devil wants to destroy your ministry & life! It is when we forget who we really are & where we come from…
-Prov 13:10, By pride comes nothing but strife…
-Prov 14:3, In the mouth a fool is a rod of pride…
-Prov 18:16, Pride goes before destruction, And a haughty spirit before a fall.

A leader who has stepped on the landmine of pride does not consider how the Lord has gifted him for his calling. Instead, he looks at his accomplishments & thinks, Look what I’ve done!
Pride is when you start believing your own publicity… Nebuchadnezzar was such a man! He was quoted as saying, …look at this great Babylon… Then God reminded him by giving him 2 years in the open fields, he dwelt as an animal.

God may let him get away with pride for a season, but ultimately, it will end in destruction…
Gal 6:2-4, Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. 3 For if anyone thinks himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself. 4 But let each one examine his own work, and then he will have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another.
James 5:, GOD RESISTS THE PROUD! But on the other hand he EXALTS THE HUMBLE…
Prov 29:23, A man’s pride will bring him low, But the humble in spirit will retain honor…

Humility will always take you far!
Roms 12:16, Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion.

 2. THE LANDMINE OF ENVY…we live in a world of comparisons, where we are trained by the media to watch those ahead of & behind us.  Am I keeping pace? Am I reaching my goals quickly enough? ENVY & JEALOUSY CAN BLOW IN YOUR FACE WHEN YOU LEAST EXPECT IT!
The story if told of a priest who lived in devotion in a cave in isolation and refused all temptation that the devil brought his way. Finally the devil said, "tell him how his brother has been promoted and how he has been forgotten!" It was then the priest was filled with jealousy and envy quitting the ministry.

Pas 75:7, But God is the Judge: He puts down one, And exalts another…
Problem is when we are filled with jealousy & envy…focus on self. The Devils goal is to DISTRACT…affects our vision…unclear…

God is primarily interested in one thing: a correct focus. He wants us to focus on Him & His will for our lives….not on what he is doing in others…

When our thoughts are focused on him…He provides the discernment we need to locate the Enemy’s landmines & disarm each one as we turn away from temptation & sin.  We are tempted to gauge our spiritual success on the number of souls saved each week…number of members…amount of money! How do we do that? COMPARE!  The truth is, God’s approval is based on His unconditional love for us. We end up beat ourselves up!

 3. THE LANDMINE OF DISCOURAGEMENT…devil’s primary goal is to discourage us. He wants us to give it up…QUIT!
This has been the biggest battle I faced in my ministry! When I took the church I am currently pastoring. It had been through splits, there was no money & was filled with immorality, rebellion & debt… there came a time…felt helpless & hopeless. I WANTED TO QUIT!

If the devil can get you to feel HELPLESS…VICTIM…you may not leave but you are gone! In iso,ration you become a manger instead of a leader. The results are devastating—not only for ourselves, but for our family, friends, & congregation.

Listen, No one is a spiritual island. We need each other…need fellowship!
Ecc 4:9-10, Two are better than one, Because they have a good reward for their labor. 10 For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls, For he has no one to help him up.
Ask God to bring into your life a friend who sticks closer than a brother, who
can encourage you when you are weak (Prov. 18:24).

Whatever you are struggling with, you are not alone… Get the help you need before discouragement undermines your ministry.

HOW TO NAVIGATE YOUR WAY THROUGH!:

The only way through a mine field is carefully or with a map! Dr Stanley, "Avoiding serious trouble is not difficult, especially if you follow the route God has given you to travel. God knows the way through every minefield.

Consider with me how to navigate your way through this minefield!

1. SURRENDER your life to the Lord. YOUR relationship with God is the most important line of defense that you have.
If you are still trying to control certain areas of your life, then you are already standing in the middle of a minefield. The next step you take could be deadly. Without thinking of the consequences, people become jealous, controlling, or unforgiving.

On God’s battlefield, surrender is not waving a white flag of defeat. Instead, it is a bold step taken toward victory…peace & blessing. You must determine right now to submit your will to God on a daily basis.

 2. LEARN from the Word of God. Ephes 6 Paul lists the full armour of God. There is only one offensive weapon that He has given us, & it is all we need to stay firm in our faith against the attacks of Satan. It is the same weapon that Jesus used when facing the Enemy’s temptation—the Word of God, which is God’s eternal truth spoken to man.
2 Tim 2: Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 16 But shun profane and idle babblings, for they will increase to more ungodliness.
GET INTO THE MAP!
If your private time with God frequently turns into sermon preparation, try reading a different translation of the Bible or using a paraphrase. No matter what, find a way to read God’s Word for your own benefit, not just for your congregation’s. PRAY THE WORD OF GOD!!

3. BE COMMITTED to following Him, even in times of difficulty. There is no escaping disappointment & pain in this life.  WE All go through seasons of hardship, but we do not have to become discouraged. IT’S A CHOICE…

Adversity is a powerful tool in God’s hand. Usually, the difficulties we face provide perfect opportunities for God to prove His faithfulness. When Moses went through disappointment & frustration the WILDERNESS BECAME GODS TRAINING GROUND. To lead the Israelites. All those years that he spent in the desert were a season of preparation for something greater.

Don’t waste your life & time by harbouring feelings of unforgiveness & jealousy. STOP WAITING FOR THAT ELUSIVE LUCKY BREAK! Remove the belief that whatever you do…doesn’t matter!

April 1970, the Apollo 13 spacecraft was seriously damaged, an IMPOSSIBLE SITUATION. They were Low on oxygen and time was running out. For the 3 astronauts how could they bring them back alive? RE-ENTRY??? Any miscalculation to send the ship miles off course. NASA director, “It will be the worst disaster NASAS ever experienced! The flight director, “With all due respect, sir I believe this is going to be our finest hour!

This could be your finest hour! You may feel as though you’ve been overlooked or pushed aside, but God is not finished with you.
-If you will trust Him, you’ll experience His goodness at the right time & in the best way.

 4. PRAY…Ask the Lord to give you godly discernment & wisdom. Prayer is absolutely essential if you want to avoid landmines. God knows every landmine the Enemy has hidden along your path. Trust the Holy Spirit to make God’s will clear to you—& to teach you to follow only His voice.  The problem is THERE ARE TOO MANY VOICES SCREAMING AT US! YOU HAVE TO FIND WHRE GOD LIVES FOR YOURSELF!

Then, be willing to obey His call. Obedience to God will not only expose any landmines hidden in front of you, it also prepares a safe way for you to travel straight through any difficulty. Roms 8:37, You are more than a conqueror in Jesus Christ…

Tuesday, 9 August 2016

NAY SAYER OR GIANT SLAYER!

I grew up always believing the worst...I was what is called a NAY SAYER. A very negative type of guy who always saw the worst in very situation. If it rained we would drown and if the sun was out we would burn! In time I was confronted by a mentor and since then I have worked hard at changing from being a nay-sayer to becoming someone who sees the possibilities. A GIANT KILLER!

(Num 13:30-33)  And Caleb stilled the people before Moses, and said, Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it. {31} But the men that went up with him said, We be not able to go up against the people; for they are stronger than we. {32} And they brought up an evil report of the land which they had searched unto the children of Israel, saying, The land, through which we have gone to search it, is a land that eateth up the inhabitants thereof; and all the people that we saw in it are men of a great stature. {33} And there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, which come of the giants: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight.
How many of you know that anytime God gives a promise, Satan will try to keep us from receiving that promise? He will try to fill our HEARTS with fear and Our MOUTH with doubt. He raises up the Nay-Sayers from around us & they begin to preach the sermon of doubt & discouragement.
Nay-Sayers never see the possibility. They are conquered by their own fear. They will give a thousand reasons why it can't be done-even if God said He would be our helper.
The negativism of the Nay-Sayer is contagious...
They say things like: 'I believe for every drop of rain that falls, a flower grows a foundation leaks and a ball game gets rained out and a car rusts."
They say, 'Always take time to stop & smell the roses... and sooner or later, you'll inhale a bee."
They tell you that, "Into every life some rain must fall... Usually when your car windows are down."
NAY-SAYER; One who frequently engages in excessive complaining, negative banter and/or a genuinely poor and downbeat attitude.
Naysayers are distinguished by their tendency to consistently view the glass half empty, make frequent one-way trips to negative town, & constantly emphasise the worst of a situation.
Nay-Sayers have the capacity to rant & whine for hours on end about the most insignificant inconveniences.
They have the keen ability to spread their pessimistic attitude to a group of unsuspecting bystanders & encourage others to employ their mindset.
Naysayers tend to blend in with those around them rather well, granted they have learned over the years to adapt to their surroundings. However, when the opportunity arises, their true nature will be exposed & they will stop at nothing to exclude others or bring a general sense of negativity to any situation?
Are you a NAY SAYER? OR a GIANT SLAYER?
Here are the characteristics of a GIANT SLAYER.
1. First of all, Giant Slayers BELIEVE! In the face of overwhelming odds, Caleb & Joshua believed. With the 10 other men declaring that it could not be done, they placed their confidence in the Lord & said, "Let's go!" The writer of Hebrews tells us that "...without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him”(Heb 11:6, KJV). We cannot be a Nay-Sayer & please God
2. The Giant Slayer...Takes God at His Word. Does not rush in where angels fear to trod. But the man or woman of faith believes in the promises of God. Stand on the Word, reads the Word, lives bv the Word, speaks the Word and believes God's Word. Declares in the face of doubt and discouragement, "Let God be true and every man a liar.
3. The Giant Slayer ACHIEVES… Only the two names among the twelve are remembered. The other ten names are written, but no one remembers them. They faded into the dusty pages of defeated lives. But Joshua & Caleb are household names. Some thirty-five hundred years after this event parents are still naming their children Joshua & Caleb. When is the last time you heard some name their child.... Shaphat…  Ammiel… Igal Gaddiel… Sethur…Gaddi... Nahbi? Joshua & Caleb lived through the wilderness and came back to possess their possessions. Joshua & Caleb Achieved greatness! 
4. Giant Slayers believe, they achieve, and they RECEIVE. Joshua and Caleb received their portion of the promise. They walked on the ground, built and lived in the land. They received blessings from God & Honor among men.
Now I am not into this "Name it and claim it," or "Blab it and grab it," theology; but when I look into the Word of God & He says, 'Believer, this is for you. Then my only question is, "Do I believe?"
If I can believe, All things are possible, I can achieve, and I will receive all that God has in store for me.
Maybe God has been calling you to kill some giants in your life. Giants of depression, lust, fear, debt, disease and sin!
Giants that are standing on your promises. Today needs to be the day that you... Stop running from the roar, Resist the devil and Send him fleeing from you.

Monday, 11 January 2016

THE CULTURE OF THE LOCAL CHURCH!





 THE CULTURE OF THE LOCAL CHURCH!



When we speak about culture...it is the tangible & intangibles of that group!

It's more then the way people dress & behave...its the intangibles...harder to grasp...it's values...beliefs & assumptions...how problems are addressed...
It is the TANGIBLE & INTANGIBLES ...

Problem with culture it often goes unnoticed, unspoken & unexamined...

CULTURE is of more importance then VISION...vision &strategy usually focuses on products, services & outcomes!
But culture is about VALUES!

Culture describes the air of the congregation...It's the snapshot of the church! It is the sense or feeling u get when you walk into the church!
EG:     -Are people valued...who are the leaders...is rewarded...is there                  
            loyalty...JOY?

The culture of any church begins at the top! Values! The leaders integrity, competence & care...
This is for better or worse...the culture of your church is cultivated by you & those you discipleship.

1. The church must cultivate & develop a culture of hope!
Rom. 15:13“I pray that God who gives you hope will keep you happy and full of peace as you believe in him. May you overflow with hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.”
Hopesuch a powerful concept in the bible & yet so often its absent from most of our lives
Although we are one of the most prosperous generations to ever exist were still surrounded by broken, fragmented, angry & despairing people.
One man said, Most people lead lives of quiet desperationan unconscious despair is concealed even under what we call the games & amusements of mankind.

Heres what most people are experiencing no matter what kinds of gimmicks & gadgets you have in this life, no matter how many bells & whistles you associate with your lifestyle choiceslife still stinks!
Do you know why? Its because most people live their life w/o any sense of real hope!

The question is, Why should the church be the purveyor of hope?Ill tell you why, because hope cant be found anywhere else.
The world offers its own special brand of hope, but its always an illusion.
The world says put your hope in these kinds of peoplepoliticians, superstars and athletes - but they always let us down.

So where is our hope? I believe it can be found in the church. Not in the organization or the building but in a relationship with God through His Son Jesus Christ.
Eph. 2:12, if you are without God then you are without hope.”

The message we have to share with our culture is a message of hope, in fact its the only hope they have.

Thats why we must work hard to create a culture of hope in this churchbecause generations are depending on us!

When we talk about the culture of hope then weve got to let people know that they dont have stay the way they are that theres real hope for them to change, not into something we want them to be, but into all that God has created them to be.
Isnt that a great message for today?

If the church is to develop this culture of hope then…it needs to have the

1. The priority of preaching the gospelWe believe in preaching the good news is what will bring real hope to your life!
Luke 4:18, The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me, Because He has anointed Me To preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives And recovery of sight to the blind, To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
Preaching has the power to open blind eyesthose who are deaf can hearhealed from a  broken heartto be set at libertyfeel free for the 1st time in their lives!
THIS IS OUR HOPE, that Christ died for us, he died for sinners and he has saved us and redeemed us.

Its not about the music, the facilities we use or the programs we have, ITS THE GOSPEL, fully preached that brings hope
Roms 8:23-25, Not only that, but we also who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body. 24 For we were saved in this hope, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance.

2. The second tool is fellowshipthis is when we take fellowship beyond the 4 walls
Acts 2: …they  broke bread from house to house…
Fellowship is designed for building a community within the communityyoull find life-long friendships.
Its the only place where you can truly be YOU where you can be truthful with your struggles & excited about your victories.
Its in this small group context where real, sustained and measurable growth can happen. It wont happen in the bigger, more impersonal worship experience.
This model is our future because we know that spiritual growth & maturity are the results of the accountability that happens in a small group.
Heres a point of application if youre not connected in fellowshipdo it today!

3. The third tool our church offers is ministrynow I know that this word often conjures up images of professional ministers But thats not what I mean.
Doing ministry of any kind has the capacity of producing hope in your life. Do you know why?
-Because you can see the difference you make in someone elses life

I dont have the time to go through a list of all the ministries we have here
Just want you to know if you have a desire to grow spiritually mature, then that wont happen w/o giving yourself to ministry. Find a place and plug in!

When a culture of hope is engrained in a church that place begins to see radical changes in their community & in the lives of those they are reaching & heres the real advantage for this kind of culture. When hopeless people find hope here in our church, then they become the greatest advocates for our church.

In other words, when lost people get found, then theyre ready to do whatever it takes to find more lost people.

Maybe youre here & you feel hopeless. Let me encourage you with these words God has a plan for your life, its a plan with a future and a hope. All you need to do is surrender to his leadership in your life.