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Watch 2022 online sermons » Christine Caine » Christine Caine - A Life Unleashed - Part 6

Christine Caine - A Life Unleashed - Part 6


Christine Caine - A Life Unleashed - Part 6
Christine Caine - A Life Unleashed - Part 6
TOPICS: A Life Unleashed

Stop wasting your life just playing games nonstop. Stop wasting your life just binge-watching endless tv. Stop wasting your life scrolling through endless social media. Stop wasting your life in fruitless discussions that are going nowhere. Stop wasting your life, start taking accountability for this one and only life that we have. James says, "Life is but a vapor". I think that's one thing we've realized over the last little while. It's here today and it's gone tomorrow, so let's make it count.

Hey, it's Chris here. I believe it is no accident that you're tuned in for today's episode of equip and empower. I truly believe this is a timely word that God has given me to encourage you, to strengthen you, and to help you to give birth to the dreams that God has placed on the inside of your heart. So let's not wait another moment. I can't wait to get started and share this message with you.

Hey, everyone, I am so grateful that you've joined me again today. I know that the Lord's going to speak to you through this program. I am having so much fun as we unpack what it means to unleash the God-given purpose and the God-given potential that lies on the inside of every single one of us. You know, you were not created by accident, you were created on purpose for a God-given purpose and a God-given destiny. And we've been looking throughout this series, I've loved it. We've been looking at what does it mean to conceive the God dream that comes out of intimacy with the Lord.

What is it to believe that God who he says he is and that he can do what he says that he can do? How do we position ourselves in the center of the will of God and position around us, people that are going to help take us to the purpose of God? How do we continue to envision the future, to keep our eyes on a eternal future in the midst of so much temporal upheaval? And what does it truly mean to endure to the end, to build up our resilience and our tenacity and our strength, so that we can, through the power of God, overcome adversity and fulfill our God-given purpose? Today, we're going to pick right up and continue to talk about what it means to enlarge your capacity, your thoughts, your relationships, and your expectations.

You know, I love the book of Isaiah. And in Isaiah 54:2, the writer, the prophet wrote this, he said, "Enlarge the place of your tent and let them stretch out the curtains of your dwelling. Do not spare, lengthen your cords, and strengthen your stakes". I love this verse. In this verse, God was saying to the children of Israel, "I can't fit what I want to do in your life, in the space that you have created for me, I need more room". You're not imagining. You're not dreaming. You're not thinking. You're not believing big enough. You need to get bigger and we need to enlarge, if we're going to be able to carry the dream and the vision that God's put on the inside of us.

You know, when I was pregnant, I remember both with Catherine and Sophia. I remember there was that moment when suddenly, I could no longer fit in my clothes. Any woman that's carried a child knows what that's like. You kind of go and you stay in your same clothes for as long as you can. Now listen, if I had kind of gotten pregnant in the pandemic, I would've been able to fit in my clothes longer. Because for the entire pandemic, I just wore sweat pants. So that would've been awesome. But when I was pregnant, I had to wear like real clothes because you know, that's what we did in the real world. So I very quickly could tell my jeans are getting a bit tight and I can no longer do up my jeans. And the worst part is like in the later part of pregnancy, when you literally finally relent and you go to the maternity store, and you go, "I cannot actually believe I'm wearing this stuff".

But yes, I became that. What happened is, when I could no longer fit into my clothes, I had to make room for the baby that was growing on the inside of me. Spiritually, I want to make the same analogy for you, who you and I are today is not big enough for all that God wants to do in and through our lives in the future. You see? So we have to enlarge our capacity. I want to say to you today that God does not determine the quality of our lives. It's not God, ultimately, as much as our personal capacity does. And what I mean by that is for us to fulfill what he's called us to do, then we have to be committed to the process of increasing our personal capacity. We grow to where we need to go. See, I think a lot of us, we want God just to take us there, but we have to grow. This is where we partner with God.

People say, "Well, Christine isn't God, or is it you"? I say, we work together. God likes to work together. If he just wanted to do it all without us, he could have done it all without us. But the fact is he includes us in that process. And during that process, that process itself could be sanctifying, that process in itself can be making us be conformed and transformed to the image of God. You know, when I first walked into the local church in 1989, I remember it was a Sunday night and I walked in and I was in the back of this warehouse. Well, that kid that walked in that had so many problems back then, I was so broken. I was full of shame. I was full of insecurity. I was full of fear. I was full of doubt. I was full of anger. There were so many things going on on the inside of me.

Well, the girl that walked into that 6:00 pm service on a Sunday night, on January the 29th, 1989, in the back of a warehouse in Sydney, Australia, that girl, even though nobody around me would've seen her, 'cause externally, I didn't look that good, but that girl had all the potential to do exactly what it is that I am doing today. But who I was back then was not big enough on the inside to do and to carry what the Lord allows me to do and carry today. I had to grow in knowledge. I had to grow in wisdom. I had to grow in experience. I had to grow in healing and wholeness and health. I had to get out of my comfort zone. I had to learn a whole new set of skills over all of these decades, then continually learn new skills to do what I'm called to do. I didn't know.

When I walked into church in my early 20s, I didn't know how to run a global anti-trafficking organization. I didn't know how to run a global women's organization. I did not know how to speak on television to you today. I did not know how to travel and teach and do all of the things and how to lead a staff of hundreds of people. I didn't know how to do that. I had to increase in my skills. I didn't know how to read the Bible well, and I've been committed to that. I just finished grad school. Again, I started grad school when I was 50 years old and got a grad degree in evangelism and leadership because I want the second half of my life, I want to be even more effective than I was in the first half of my life, so I had to learn new skills, even as a 50-year-old woman, even running a global ministry.

I went to grad school, so that I could learn more. I had to learn new skills. I have to continually grow to become who God needs me to become, to do what I'm called to do. I've had to stay teachable throughout all of my life. You know, it's been a lot of work to get here and it will continue to be work to get to where I need to go. I am not who I need to be today to do what God has called me to do down the track. Now that doesn't mean God's going to love me anymore here. You know, while I was still a sinner, Christ died for me. There's nothing I can do that's going to make God love me any more or less than he does right now. I'm not talking about being loved by God, I'm talking about fruitfulness for the Kingdom of God. I'm talking about effectiveness for the Kingdom of God. I think sometimes we just go, "Well, God just loves me," and that's it. It's not an issue of love, it's an issue of fruitfulness.

You know, I love the parable of talents in the book of Matthew 25, I'm going to read this to you, Matthew 25. Of course, I've got to put my glasses on, so that we can read this together. Matthew 25:14, this scripture says, this is one of my favorite, favorite parables in all of scripture:

"For it will be like a man going on a journey who called his servants and entrusted them his property. To one, he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away. He who had received the five talents went at once and traded with them, and he made five talents more. So also, he who had the two talents made two talents more, but he who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground and hid his master's money. Now, after a long time, the master of those servants came and settled accounts with them. And he who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five talents more, saying, 'master, you delivered to me five talents. Here, I have made five talents more'. His master said to him, 'well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little. I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master'. And he also, who had the two talents came forward, saying, 'master, you delivered to me two talents, but here, I have made two talents more'. His master said to him, 'well done, good and faithful servant. You've been faithful over a little. I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master'. He also, who had received the one talent came forward, saying, 'master, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed. So I was afraid and I went and I hid your talent in the ground. Here, you have what is yours'. But his master answered him, 'you wicked and slothful servant. You knew that I reap where I've not sown and gather where I scattered no seed? Then you ought to have invested my money with the bankers at my own coming, and I should have received what was my own with interest. So take the talent from him and give it to him who has the 10 talents. For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have an abundance. But from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away. And cast the worthless servant into the outer darkness. In that place, there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth'".

Now that is intense. That is intense. What we see in this parable is that the master gave talents to each servant, according to his own ability. And we see that the ability of the servant increased or decreased depending on what they did with what they have. I want you, you saw that the one that did nothing with what he was given by his master, he was given one talent. He buried it, he buried it. Well, you know, by the end of the parable, he had zero talents. So his capacity actually decreased.

Now the one that had five talents. At the end of the parable, he had 11 talents because he had doubled his five to 10. And then he also received the one from the man that buried his. So he had 11 talents. So his personal capacity increased. And the one that started with two, his personal capacity increased too, he finished with four. And how they increased or decreased had everything to do with what they did with what they have. So sometimes you say to me, "Chris, I just wasn't born that way". Now we certainly have certain limitations, but all of us have the capacity to increase and decrease in various areas, determine by what we do with what we have. So a lot of us were just waiting. Man, we're just waiting for it to fall out of the sky. And God's saying, "I'm waiting for you to do something with what it is that I have given you".

What gifts, what talents, what opportunities has God given you? Stop looking at all the things that you don't have and look at what you do have and begin to put to work the thing that you have. You see, the quality of our lives and the quality of our dreams are not determined by external forces, but by our personal capacity. And a great place to start is to address the limitations that you can do something about, because I think we spent so much time trying to change what we can't change. Listen, it wouldn't matter how much I had a dream to be a woman's basketball athlete or champion. The fact is I'm five foot three. It doesn't matter how much I pray or how much I fast, I am not going to become a professional basketball player. And some of us, we've got these dreams that are just not truly God dreams, we're just sort of making 'em up and they're more wishes than dreams. And then we're so frustrated because all we think about is why that thing's not coming to pass.

So what we need to think about is, okay, let me look at some limitations I can do something about, so I can step into what it is that God has for me. Some of us, it's thinking limitations. Our thoughts are not God's thoughts. Isaiah 55:8, the writer says, the prophet says, "My thoughts are not your thoughts. Your ways are not my ways. Your thoughts are not my thoughts. Your thoughts are higher than my thoughts and your ways are higher than my ways". And a lot of us, we have ways that we think about God and ways that we think about ourselves, ways that we think about the world around us that are limiting us and containing us. And today, I want to invite you to say, "I'm willing to have my thinking stretched". Maybe I've limited God. Maybe the way I've been thinking about God is too small. Maybe the way I've been thinking about how God can use me in my life has been too limited and it's been culturally restricted and I've believed culture rather than going to the word and seeing what the Lord has said about me and seeing what the Lord has said that I could do. We have so many.

I remember, I just grew up in a world where I didn't think a woman could do anything for God. I grew up in a very staunch Greek orthodox culture. And it was just like, I just never thought a woman could do anything great, but on the inside of me was this desire to make my life count for the glory of God. I had to address the thinking limitations I had about myself, about my past, about my culture, about my tradition. And as I began to address those thinking limitations and took the blinders off and began to see who God said he was according to his word and what God said I could do according to his word. It began to change my expectation of God. My skills' limitations. You know, there's some things I want to do in the next season of my life, and I realized I was limited. I was limited, so I went back to grad school and I got my grad degree in evangelism and leadership, because there are some opportunities, there are some things I want to do down the track.

Now that's something I could have complained about or done something about. So I chose to do something about it. Sometimes, some things, it's not that it's, you can't do it, you just currently don't have the skill set necessary to do it. So perhaps, you need to go and get the skills, invest the time, invest the resource, invest the energy to get the skills and develop the skills you need to do. It's not a spiritual thing keeping you out of your purpose, it's a skill thing, and get the skills. Perhaps, education limitations. You know, I just addressed one of mine. So maybe it's time to find a way, instead of all the reasons why you can't do it. Say, "Okay, I'm going to get what I need to do. Maybe the degree. I need to get all the further training I need to get to educate myself to do this thing that God's put on the inside of me". Perhaps, it's fitness limitations.

Okay, so what's holding me back is that, you know, I'm so tired. So go and work out what is wrong with your blood. Work out what is wrong with your strength. Maybe you need some vitamins. Maybe you need more sleep. Maybe you need to exercise some more. I mean, it could be a very natural thing that is hindering your spiritual growth. Perhaps, it's resource limitations. Go, "Okay, God, how can I access some of the things that I need to access, so that I can become who I need to be to do the thing that you've called me to do"? I want to encourage you today to do some things you've never done before. Go somewhere that you've never been before. Take a different route, do something new, speak to somebody you've not spoken before, enlarge your life right where you are, and then begin to walk through the doors that God opens for you.

You know, the fact is as you start to build one step at a time, right where you are with the people that you have in the environment that you have, as you start to build, what you're going to find is that God builds through you. See, a lot of us, we're just sitting here. We're just waiting on God, God, God, God, and God's saying, "I'm waiting on you. I've placed that opportunity in front of you. Start to enlarge your life". Look where you are. Train, equip, stop wasting your life. Stop wasting your life just playing games nonstop. Stop wasting your life just binge-watching endless tv. Stop wasting your life scrolling through endless social media. Stop wasting your life in fruitless discussions that are going nowhere. Stop wasting your life. Start taking accountability for this one and only life that we have. James says, "Life is but a vapor". I think that's one thing we've realized over the last little while. It's here today and it's gone tomorrow.

So let's make it count. Let's make a one and only life count for the glory of God. Let's make a decision. I'm going to enlarge my sphere of influence. I'm going to enlarge my compassion. I'm going to enlarge the people I allow into my world. The one thing that's happening during this time, it's always like people are shrinking back. People are doubling down and there is so much divisiveness and there is so much chaos. It's like our world is shrinking, instead of our world is expanding. God has called us to go into all the world and to make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the father and the son of the Holy Spirit. That means if we're going to go into all the world, how about we go into our neighborhood? How about we get to know who our neighbor is? How about we start to notice the people in our shopping centers, in our schools, in our communities?

How about we begin to see the people that are in our own world and begin to enlarge the place of our tent and say, "You know what, God? I want my heart to be enlarged. I want my capacity to love people to be enlarged. Father, I want to invite people into my world and I want to be salt and light. I want to shine your light wherever I go". The Bible says, "Let your light so shine before men," why? "That they may see your good works and glorify your father in heaven". Father, I want to enlarge my world for the glory of God. The thing is, after the season that we've been through, that sense of, I want to shrink back, that sense of, I just want to live a quiet life, just removed from everybody else, it is so antithetical to the Gospel witness. It is so antithetical to what we've been called to do as Jesus' followers, to go into all the world, to be advocates of love, and grace, and justice, and mercy, and truth, and to proclaim the Gospel of the Lord, Jesus Christ into a lost and a broken world.

How do we do that? We do that one life at a time. How do we do that? We do that one person at a time. We say, "Lord, enlarge me. In a time when we feel like our world has shrunk, in a time when we feel like man, we've been in multiple lockdowns, and I can't even leave my home, still in some places around the world, and it seems like everything has shrunk. It seems like the last couple of years, everything has been made smaller. I feel like I've lost so many things. I feel like I'm grieving so many things". I feel like I can't fulfill what God has called me to do. In the midst of that, the prophet speaks to the children of Israel and he says, "Okay, it's time, enlarge the place of your tent".

Come on, it's time to enlarge. It's time to stretch. It's time to lengthen. It's time to strengthen. It's time to stop pulling back. It's time to stop being full of fear and doubt and negativity. It's time to step up and into the purpose of God. It's time to enlarge your sphere of influence. It's time to look up again. It's time to look out again. It's time to invest your heart again. It's time to be about the father's business again. We've got to make a decision to keep enlarging, to keep stretching, to keep lengthening, and to keep strengthening. I've made a decision. I thought I'm going back to grad school. I want to keep enlarging. I want to keep stretching. I want to keep lengthening. I want to keep strengthening. I want to keep being used for the glory of God.

As long as there is still breath in my lungs, as my heart is still beating, I want to keep running my race. I want to keep finishing my course. I want to stay faithful to the end. I want to do what God has called me to do. I want to be who God has called me to be. I want to be like the apostle Paul, who says this one thing I do, "Forgetting those things that are behind, I press on to lay a hold of all of that for which Christ Jesus has laid a hold of me". The greatest days are still ahead of you.
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