Creflo Dollar - The Destructive Power Of Complacency
Well, get your pads out. Get your ears prompt and ready to go. I want to challenge you to go to this next place with me. And thank you guys so much for loving Taffi and I; for participating in the times of confessions in the morning, the times of prayer, the times of giving, the times of doing what you can to serve other people, volunteering as we continue to reach out with people. It's a blessing of the Lord. I want to remind you, and over and over and over again I'm standing in the building preaching to the church. You're the church. You're the church. I'm standing in the building where the church gathers, but you are the church. And I pray today will not only give you understanding of God's Word, but it's one of those messages I may have to teach again once the church comes back into the building because this is something that got my attention.
It caught me a little off guard because I was like, "Lord, I don't want that to be me". And so if you have your Bibles, let's begin this morning. Go with me to the Book of Proverbs chapter 1, Proverbs chapter 1 and verse 32 in the New Living Translation. And this morning I want to teach, and I may get excited. I hope I can stay calm so I can translate this information to you properly so that your life can be changed and challenged. Proverbs chapter 1, verse 32. I'm going to teach you on, I call this "The Destructive Power of Complacency," the Destructive Power of Complacency.
Now, some may not even be able to grab hold of what that is, and I'm going to show it to you in a moment. But I think what really got my attention is; by not being aware of this, this could be something that could cause destruction in my life as a Christian, in your life as a Christian, and it has already caused destruction in lives of people who just have no idea what it is and how it can destroy. But one of the greatest dangers in the Christian life is complacency. One of the greatest dangers in the Christian life is complacency. Well, what is it? Let's define it. Let's spend the next 5 or 10 minutes and work on what it is so I can make sure that each of you can get a hold of this.
Complacency, it is a feeling of calm satisfaction with your own abilities or your own situation. So there's this feeling of calm satisfaction with my ability, of calm satisfaction with my situation that prevents you from trying harder. In other words, you're so satisfied about your situation you won't try harder. You're so satisfied with your situation you're not motivated to keep moving or going to the next level. It's a feeling of calm satisfaction with your own abilities or a situation that prevents you from trying harder.
Now, the first thing I think about, this can easily be confused with contention or contentment. So I want to compare contentment with complacency just for a moment. Contentment is about being satisfied and at ease while you're improving and getting better and progressing to the next level. So contentment is about, "Okay, I'm satisfied; but at the same time while I'm satisfied, I continue to improve, I continue to get better, I continue to make progress to the next level".
See, you can be satisfied with a 500-square foot house, but you're continuing to get better, continuing to improve, continuing to work harder to go to that next level. So that's what it means. It means to be satisfied while you're in the process of making more progress and getting better. Contentment is about having a good attitude about where you are while knowing you are on your way to another place or another level. 1 Timothy chapter 6, verse 6 and 8 says this, and it talks about contentment. He says, "But godliness with contentment is great gain". But godliness with contentment is great gain. And then in verse 8 he says, "And having food and raiment, let us be therefore content".
So he says, you know, godliness with contentment equals great gain, but he says, "Okay. So even when you just have food and when you just have clothes, learn how to be content, learn how to be satisfied. You're not going to be there. You're just passing through that point. You're not going to stay there all your life because you're going to continue to work hard at achieving the next level". So godliness grows through the presence of the person of Jesus Christ. Now, complacency on the other hand, it means refusing to work to improve. Complacency on the other hand is, "I refuse to work. I'm so satisfied with where I am I refuse to work to improve".
Complacency has decided to carry this slogan: it's good enough. It's good enough. And if that's your slogan, if you find yourself saying, "Well, it's good enough. I don't need to, you know, go any farther. I don't need to work any harder. It's good enough". As soon as you take hold of that slogan, you have decided to go down the path of complacency. Because if you're satisfied with how everything is, and it's just good enough, and everything is just cool, and, "There's no need of me working any harder. There's no need of me going after anything any other way," then you have proceeded to go down the path of complacency because you're so satisfied with it being good enough you're so calm with your abilities, you're so calm and satisfied with your situation that you say, "Well, I don't need to try harder. This is good enough". As if that's all the good that God has to offer your life. And I'm telling you, that's not it at all.
Now, let's look at Christian contentment versus Christian complacency. How does this now deal with our lives as Christian people? Well, first of all, Christian contentment means that no matter what happens, you are fully satisfied in Jesus. So Christian contentment: "No matter what happens, regardless of what happens, I am fully satisfied in Jesus". But Christian complacency, it means that no matter what happens, you are fully self-satisfied with your current personal effort in pursuing Christ. It's enough, or it's good enough.
So Christian complacency, when you look at Christian contention, you're talking about that no matter what happens, you're fully satisfied in Jesus and you're believing in Jesus to take you to the next place; but Christian complacency says that no matter what happens, you're fully self-satisfied. So the satisfaction is self-satisfaction with your current personal effort in your pursuing with Christ. "I'm satisfied with who I am in Christ. I'm satisfied with the revelation I have in Christ. I'm satisfied with, you know, my worship with Christ. I don't need to grow any more than what I'm growing. I don't need to pray any more than what I'm praying. I don't need to listen to any more Word. I have self-satisfaction in my current personal effort in pursuing Christ. It's good enough. My Christian life, it's good enough. It's fine".
See, you're now in complacency. Therefore, to put all this together, let's now see how we would define complacency for this teaching today. Complacency then is a feeling of being satisfied with how things are and not wanting to try to make them better. It's self-satisfaction, especially when accompanied by unawareness of actual dangers and deficiencies. I'm telling you right now this is a trick of the enemy, feelings of being satisfied with how things are.
Are you satisfied with how things are? Feelings of not wanting to try to make them better. Are you in that place whereas in your mind it's just good enough? "I don't need to make it better. I'm pretty satisfied with where things are right now". And do you find yourself that you are not even aware of the actual dangers and deficiencies? Because of this complacency, you're not even aware of what it's doing to your life. And I'm telling you, complacency is a dangerous position. It is a dangerous posture for a Christian person. It is out to attack your growth in Christ. In other words, you only go so high, you only grow so much until all of a sudden you're just satisfied with where you are.
So complacency is both destructive and dangerous. Complacency is a deadly enemy to your Christian growth. You know, we know about God; that he is so big and he's so high and he's so wide and he's so deep. Do you actually think that you'd bankrupt heaven? Do you actually think that what you have is all that God wants to do? Do you actually think that the growth that you've experienced so far is all of the growth that God wants you to experience? Absolutely not. And I tell you, that has been the reason that a lot of ministries don't exist anymore, a lot of worship leaders don't exist anymore.
A lot of people who reach a certain point and say, "Well, you know, I'm pretty satisfied". And there was more. There was more. There was more to achieve. Praise God. So now let's get into this and let's show you some Scriptures according to the Word, and let's continue to dig deeper into this. Paul gave us a warning about complacency, and I never realized this until this Word really got on the inside of my spirit. Go with me to the Book of Philippians chapter 3, verse 12, and I want to read verse 12 through 21. I always use this as a Scripture to try to encourage people, but I want you to notice in context what Paul was doing here now. In verse 12 he said, "Not as though I had already attained".
You see, some Christian people with complacency, they have the attitude that they've already attained, they've already gotten all there is to get. "Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect," or complete, "but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus". Verse 13, "Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended, but this one thing I do". Now watch this. Paul says, "Here's the one thing I do. I am forgetting those things which are behind". Because somehow people think they look at what's behind and it causes them to be complacent and to be satisfied because of the success or the things that they've achieved behind them. And Paul says, "You know what? I'm forgetting about the things that are behind so that I can reach forth unto the things which are before".
I believe that goes together. He says sometimes it's the stuff you've accomplished behind you that stops you from reaching to the things that are ahead of you. What are some of the things in your past that's got you anchored to your past when there's so much more in your future? What are some of the things that are behind you, the things that you haven't forgotten, therefore you don't move to try to get to those things that are front? And Paul said, "I'm forgetting those things". He says, "Here's the one thing I'm doing. Here's the one thing I'm doing. I'm forgetting the things that are behind me so I can reach forth unto those things that are before me".
There are some things before you. You hadn't exhausted heaven. Heaven's not bankrupt. I don't know what it is in our minds, as big as God is, no matter what you've achieved, it's not all that he wants to do. And the only thing that can stop you from discovering all that God wants to do, I don't think you'll ever experience in this planet all that God wants to do. And look what he says here. He says, "I press towards the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus". After reading verse 13 and I go here to 14, he says, "I press"... Here's how I read it. Now he says, "I press. I press, or else". In other words, it's like either you're going to press towards that mark or you're going to let what's behind you cause you to be complacent.
So Paul is encouraging people. "Come on, press on. That's not it. Press on. Don't be satisfied there. Press on. Don't be complacent there. Press on". And he said, "Forget about the stuff that's behind". And I just thought, "Well, let's just forget about the bad stuff that's behind". And true enough, there are some bad things you need to forget about, and maybe God delivered you from the bad stuff, but there's always so much more in your future that's going to require you to stay away from being complacent so you can press on. It's either - it's press on, or else. I just say that.
Now, press on or else. And I don't want us to continue to experience the or else, the destruction that comes when you don't press on. And so he goes on and he says, "I press towards that mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus". Verse 15 he says, "Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded; that if anything you be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you". Verse 16 he says, "Nevertheless, whereto we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us mind the same thing". Seventeen, "Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as you have us for an example". Okay, Paul pressing. "For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping," he's weeping, "that they are the enemies of the cross".
Oh, these are ones who became complacent. He says they are now the enemies of the cross. And look at the description of what they do now because they've become complacent. Verse 19 he says, "Whose end is destruction". That's what happens when you're complacent. "Whose end is destruction, whose god is their belly, whose glory is in their shame, and who mind earthly things". Wow. Verse 20 he says, "For our conversation," our lifestyle, "is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ". And in verse 21, "Who shall change our vile bodies, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself".
There's more. There's more. You are either, listen to me now, You're either growing in maturity or you're growing to some degree in complacency, but there's no such thing as, "I'm just standing still right now". You are not standing still. See, you're either growing one way or you're growing the other way, but you're not just standing still. You're either growing towards the things of God, you're growing and maturing in the things of God, or you're growing in complacency.
Look at 2 Peter. I thought this was very interesting. 2 Peter chapter 1, let's look at this in the New Living Translation for a moment. 2 Peter chapter 1 and verse 5 through 10 in the New Living Translation. He says, "In view of all of this, make every effort to respond to God's promises. Supplement your faith with a generous provision of moral excellence, and moral excellence with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with patient endurance, and patient endurance with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love for everyone".
Notice he's adding, he's adding, he's adding. He's growing. He's going forth. He keeps adding to it. He keeps growing in the things of God. "The more you grow like this". See, they are growing. This is growing towards the things of God. This is maturing in the things of God. "The more you grow like this, the more productive and useful you will be in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ". The more you grow like this. The more you grow like this. All right, watch the next verse. "But those who fail to develop in this way," those who have become complacent, those who fail to develop in this way, those who fail to press and keep growing; but those who fail to develop in this way, they are shortsighted, they are blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their old sins. I mean, they are so complacent they have forgotten that they have been delivered from their old sins.
And look what he says in the next verse. He says, "So, dear brothers and sisters, work hard to prove that you really are among those God has called and chosen. Do these things". What things? Keep growing. Keep pressing. Don't become complacent. Those who do these things, you will never fall away. You will never fall away. I'm telling you, in the name of Jesus I've made my mind up. I'm going to keep growing. I'm going to keep pressing. I'm not going to allow my successes of my past, I'm not going to allow my failures of my past cause me to become complacent. I'm not going to stop growing in my maturity towards God and begin down the path of complacency.
If I continue to press towards my maturity towards God, I will never fall. In other words, if you are a Christian who is complacent with your growth in God, you are in trouble, you are in danger. If you are a Christian who has become complacent in your growth with God and everything's just enough, you don't need to hear no more teachings, you don't need to pray anymore. "I used to pray". You don't need to make no more confessions. You know, you don't need to, you know, let God use you here. You're satisfied with how you're loving, you're satisfied with your patience, if that's your attitude, you are in a very dangerous, dangerous position.
You see, the problem with complacency is that it causes us to live off of our past victories. It causes us to look at things that we've accomplished in the past and you become complacent. So often we can experience the power of God in our lives and then assume because he acted like that in the past that he'll always do the same in the future. And God has many, many ways of doing what he does, but we're stuck in, "This is how he did it in the past".
And he wants you to move on because he says, "I've got some new ways. I got some things you've never seen before. I got to show you what I can do in your time and with this situation. I got to show you how I can take that messy stuff and mix it with the good stuff and make something good out of it". But you're limiting him. Your complacency is limiting him, and he's like, "Oh, I've got so much more to give you. I can't because you only expect from me what I've already done, and I'm too big to be stuck with just one way of doing things". God says there's a million ways to get you out of debt by the end of the week and you're limited to one.
So we must seek God. We've got to seek God anew every day. If we're to finish the race strong, we got to keep pursuing God. Don't allow the things you've experienced to complete and totally define your Christian relationship with God. It should be an ever-growing relationship. It should be ever growing in your pursuit of God. It should be the discovery of just a new part of God in your relationship. And where you thought you really loved him because of this one thing, you keep pressing and pursuing him and you realize, "Look at this. Here's another phase of God. Here's another piece of goodness of God". You've got to keep pursuing him.
Listen to me. People have become complacent and satisfied with their sin, and, you know, they're not trying to get better. You know, they say, "Well, you know, I've got the grace of God, so whatever," and you allow complacency to settle you there. You've become complacent and satisfied with your pain. You even put up with pain. You put up with the pain of relationships. You put up with the hurt. You allow people to devalue you. And I don't know. Somehow, you've talked yourself into being all right with it. That you've let somebody convince you that "there is nothing more in the future. Your best days are in your past, and I'm the best that you can do". You actually let somebody talk you into thinking that they're the best that you can do, and that's not true. That's complacency that keeps you there.
Some people are satisfied and complacent with their brokenness. They figure, "Well, my mama went through this, her mama went through that, so I might as well be satisfied with that". And I tell you heaven's got much more. Some people are complacent with their debt. "I'm not trying to be debt-free. Just as long as I can pay my bills monthly, I'm fine". Look what happens. You've become complacent, and the God of heaven has a way to get you out of that, but there's no way for you to experience that because complacency is keeping you satisfied and stranded just in your debt. And God's got supernatural debt cancellation. Some have become complacent with your job. You feel safe there, as if you can't do anything better or make any more than what you're making right now.
Somehow, you have become satisfied with the job and thinking, "Well, I'm just gonna retire". And God has so much more. I hope you're hearing me, church. We've become complacent with relationship with people, and you tolerate toxic relationships, and you tolerate people who wound you and hurt you. You tolerate people who take advantage of you, and they never give you the advantage in your life, and you are complacent with that awful, toxic relationship. I hope you're hearing me.
There are even people who are complacent with their struggles. "I've been struggling so long, I'm satisfied with it. Just at least it wasn't as bad as it used to be". Look at this. Look at this destruction of complacency and what it causes. Churches have become complacent in the time where, "You know, oh, I can remember when 40,000 people were a member of our church and, oh, how the power of God was in those days. And, oh, how we used to do that and how we used to do this and that". Wait a minute, God's not finished, God's not finished. How is it that churches have become complacent in what God did in the past that we don't believe him anymore? How is it that a soul-winning team in the past, that's all we look forward to, is going out and soul winning? Ain't nobody want to do that anymore. Hey, we did it. We got some stuff in our records. "Hey, I volunteered to help some folks out at the different things we have. I'm satisfied with the one or two times that I did".
What happened to the passion? What happened to the drive that moved us to want more of God? What happened to where when we get up in the morning and somebody's gotta pull us outta prayer? We have to set the alarm clock to get outta prayer because we were so hungry and so thirsty for his presence, and complacency has robbed us of the thirst, and complacency has robbed us of the hunger. And complacent with staying home every now and then. "I've gone to church for 20 years of my life, and I ain't missed one day. I'm satisfied with taking several months off". What happened, what happened? Have you become so complacent in your life that not only were you complacent in not coming to church, but you've become complacent during the pandemic?
"Well, I've logged on the last five times. I'm gonna take three weeks off". And it may be the very message that you need to hear, the one that you decide not to come, because there's no press towards what God wants you to have. And you think about it, what you're doing with the little, how much you expect? If you're struggling with complacency in tuning in while we're seeking God to try to make sure you get an on-time Word, and you've become complacent in tuning in, what do you think is gonna happen when you're now invited back to the building?
You're gonna be complacent with just being there, tuning in sometimes and not tuning in the other times. You could be complacent with praying some mornings and not having nothing to say to God the next. Wonder what you're giving up when you go down the path of complacency. Wonder what would have been, what should have been, what could have been, that was all destroyed because you got satisfied at the wrong spot.
Walter Hawkins wrote a song years ago and says, "I won't be satisfied until I see my Jesus". And that's my point right there. There's no satisfaction I'm gonna have. I'll be satisfied or be content, but I'll never stop pursuing the next level. I'll never stop pursuing the next level of intimacy with God. He's been good to me. He's been awesome to me, but there's another level of intimacy with him. I want more of him, I want more of him. I want more. I wanna understand him more. I want him to speak to me more. I wanna experience more of his anointing. I wanna experience more of his presence. I want more of him, he is so deep, he's so wide, he's so high. I wanna experience more of him until I am so captured by his presence. That the things that are going on in this world just can't enter in anymore because I'm not there. That I have come into his house.
I'm now entering into my Father's house, and the peace is deeper, and the joy is deeper because I keep pursuing him. Churches have become complacent. Christian people, God knows, they've become complacent. They're not hungry anymore. They're not hungry anymore. They learned a few Scriptures, got a few bits of revelation, and you don't even know that the revelation you got is just a little bit. God has so much more to add to that. That's what he was saying to Peter. "Add to this, and add to that". He's got so much more to add, and you think just 'cause you got a piece, like Taffi said earlier, you think heaven is bankrupt. You think just because there's a pandemic heaven is bankrupt, and it's not.
God is working some big things in you right now. He got you at home trying to work some junk out of you and trying to get you to get outta your complacency because he's getting ready to use you. He's getting ready to bring some dreams to pass in your life, things that you would never have. Things that you'd never walk in, you're gonna be walking in it, and you're gonna know what it's like to live days of heaven on the earth. And the only thing that can destroy that is your commitment and your yieldedness to complacency.
I won't have a part of that. I won't let it stop me. I don't care how long I've been doing it, and the people that have had, those who have success in the past are more susceptible to this. I gotta do like Paul. I gotta forget about all of the wonders of my past because God's got a greater thing in my future. I'm not doing it. I almost feel trapped to that. "Well, you know, I've resigned from the CEO. And, well, praise God I've been doing this almost 40 years. And, well, praise the Lord I've been all over the world, and, oh, I've preached to stadiums filled with people, and, oh, glory to God, hallelujah. It's time for me to just slack up".
Oh, God. I said, "Lord, forgive me". Oh, God, no. Oh, no, no, no, no, no, no. As long as there are people that are going to hell, as long as there are people that are sick and hurting, as long as there are people that are confused, as long as there is deeper revelation and greater understanding that you're bringing me into, I will not reside in complacency. I will not. And I find out that cancer is probably responsible for killing, as cancer kills people, I found out that complacency might be more responsible for killing and ending more lives than cancer and sickness and disease.
No wonder people can't make it to a hundred and a hundred and twenty. They've become complacent and satisfied. "I made 70. I'm satisfied". I'm not gonna do that. I'm not gonna be satisfied, and I don't care. Eighty, ninety, a hundred years old, I'm not gonna be satisfied with my physical, with my mental, with my spiritual. I'm still gonna be pressing all three levels of my humanity, my life, to the next level and being the best that I could be and keep going, and not saying, "Well, you know, praise God I'm almost 60. So, I got four-pack, so I'll just be satisfied with the four-pack". Uh-uh, uh-uh. I'm gonna be better than a 20-year-old. I'm gonna make a man weep when he has to come up with a 60-year-old and have to realize, "Oh, my God. This guy is in better shape than I am". Why? 'Cause I refuse to be complacent. I'm not gonna do it. I'm not gonna do it. I'm not gonna let anybody talk me into doing it.
Once this thing has come to my attention, God has so much more he wants to do for me. He has so much more he wants to do for you. I am not going to heaven, standing before the throne of God and find out there was more. "You didn't pursue it. You didn't pursue me". Wow. Body of Christ as a whole has been satisfied with how things are, and if you are satisfied with how things are, here's the word I have for you today: you're in danger. You're in danger. Let me take you through the Scriptures real quick and just show you just what the Scripture says. They don't use the word "complacency," but they use synonyms to describe what I'm talking about.
You know, this is a book in the Old Testament, Zephaniah. In Zephaniah chapter 1 and verse 12, Zephaniah says, "At that time I will search Jerusalem with lamps, and I will punish men who are complacent, those who say in their hearts, 'The Lord will not do good, nor will he do evil.'" This says he says that there's a punishment that comes, the consequences. I like to say there's a consequence that comes as a result of being complacent, or that men who are settled. The King James says that they're settled. They've become complacent.
Look at this next Scripture. Hebrews chapter 5 and verse 11 through 12. Hebrews 5:11-12. The King James uses this phrase, "dull of hearing," so they need to be taught again because they've become complacent in their hearing. He says here, verse 11, "About this we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing". Verse 12, "For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the basic principles of the oracles of God. You need milk and not solid food". And why is that? Because you've become complacent. Your hearing got dull. "I don't wanna do that". You know how people are. They were really excited about hearing the Word, and they became dull of hearing, and it's like, "Okay, well, I know that, oh, I know that".
And, see, while I'm preaching and you might know something I'm saying, the Holy Spirit now wants to add to it. I'm preaching a sermon, and he wants to add to it. But when you become complacent even in your hearing, dull of hearing, he says when you ought to be teachers by now yourself, somebody now needs to teach you because you've become dull. Look at Proverbs chapter 10 and verse 4. You know, I'm like, "Wow. This is, like, all over the Bible warning us to pursue growth in our relationship with Jesus Christ". Proverbs chapter 10:4 in the ESV. Proverbs 10:4. He says, "A slack hand causes poverty, but the hand of the diligent makes rich". Poverty comes why? It's a slack hand. It's a hand that's complacent. It's a hand that's satisfied. "I'm satisfied with $5 an hour". It's a hand that doesn't go any more than where it is right now.
A slack hand causes poverty. There's no pursuit. There's no pressing forward. A slack hand causes poverty. Look at Ephesians chapter 4:18. And, I mean, you got technology and computers to shorten your search. You know, before computers, we had to hit the pavement and knock on doors and ask for applications. You got more technology to help you, and your hand is still slack. It's slack. It won't even go to the computer. The guy who can't get to church and the guy, you know, who has problem getting to church, and yet we're sending the message right now through the social media, and your hands are slack.
Look what he says in Ephesians chapter 4 and verse 18. He uses this phrase, "the blindness of heart". He says, "Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart". That's complacency. It will cause a blind heart. It will cause you not to be able to see. Well, what happens as a result of the blind heart? "Who being in past feelings having given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness". And so, what happens is as a result of you being blind in your heart because you're not pursuing the things of God, look what happens to that blindness of heart.
Look what happens when you're complacent. You're not just, like, in the middle. "Oh, I'm satisfied". Please understand that when you're complacent you're going the other way. When you're complacent, please understand something. Complacent doesn't mean, "Well, you know, I'm just kinda in the middle right now". No, no, no, no, no. There is no middle ground. You're not standing there in the middle. You're either growing in maturity where the things of God are concerned, or complacency is leading you down a road of lasciviousness, is leading you down a road where all things can become possible, uncleanness and greediness. All that stuff happens because complacency leads you down the road opposite of where your maturing in God can lead you.
Look at Hebrews chapter 10:25. I just thought I'd just show you. Man, it's all over the Bible, the warning us not to become complacent, and I'm thinking, "I mean, I am just getting ready". I'm thinking, "I'm getting ready to become complacent. I'm gonna chill a little bit. I'm gonna calm down a little bit". Uh-uh. This thing has jacked me up and changed my fire, or changed my tire and changed my fire. I mean, maybe my fire would need to be changed, but I'm telling you I will not sink into that place of complacency. He said, "Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together".
Why do people forsake the assembling of their selves together? Complacency, complacency. You know, before we closed the building down, people were really complacent. They'd come to church once a month, or every now and then, or take five months off. Can't figure out how to keep the commitment of just showing up. You know, I said to this guy one time, I said, "You know, you really wanna lose weight? Just show up in that weight, in that exercise room every day. Just show up, just show up. You may not do as much as you do, but you keep showing up".
And then, something happens when you keep showing up, but when complacency hits you will forsake the assembling of ourselves. You know, when the virus first hit, and not our church. I mean, I thank God for World Changers Nation. You talking about consistency, I've never seen so much consistency, but there are some churches that they started off online and it's just gone straight down, because, you know, they became complacent. And they no longer, you know, would assemble with everybody through social media to do that, and that comes because you became complacent. And the Bible says, "Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but we exhort one another: and so much the more, as you see the day approaching".
Look, we're still doing what we need to do. Praise the Lord. I think about King David when I look at this whole issue of complacency. King David would go to the temple ten times a day. Seven of those ten times David would begin to give God thanksgiving and praise, and that's why he never lost a battle. Never lost a battle. Now think with me for a moment. You know, if you're out there and you're fighting a battle and you've never lost one, you gotta be careful because those successes could tempt you to come into a place of complacency. And then, we see David on the balcony. And my question was, why are you on the balcony when your army is out there fighting? With you, they never lost a battle. Why did you decide to chill on the balcony?
And on the balcony Bathsheba was taking a bath, and on the balcony he looks over and he sees her, and lust filled his eyes. And on the balcony... I'm gonna now give that balcony a name. On the balcony of complacency these thoughts filled his mind: "How can I get with her"? She was married woman. And so, from his authority he had her husband killed and kept trying to think, "Well, no big deal. Nobody knows but me". And God had to send a prophet to his house and say, "You're the man". And David fell from his brokenness into the perfect hands of God, and the Bible said that after that David sinned no more. The one time that he missed it was when he got on that balcony of complacency. Let that speak to us. Let it speak to all of us to stay away from complacency that wants to take us down a path that we don't need to go. Amen. So, what are the symptoms? How do I know that I might right now be walking and carrying some symptoms of complacency?
Now, let me make everything clear. I teach like I wanna really, you know, really overdo this thing and really pour it on and put very big emphasis on this, but I wanna make sure you understand this. Everyone experiences complacency from time to time, so that doesn't leave anybody out. Everybody. You know, there should be no Christian that's watching me this morning saying, "That's not me. I'm not ever complacent". Everybody experiences complacency from time to time.
"So, Pastor, what's the problem"? Well, it's when complacency becomes a way of life that it then becomes a problem. Not that you experience it from time to time. Everybody does, but when complacency becomes a way of life that's when it becomes a problem, so the first symptom of complacency is the satisfaction with things as they are, the satisfaction of things as they are. If that's you, that's the first symptom you'll see with complacency. "I am satisfied with the things that they are".
It's amazing, it's amazing. It's like, you know, there's a part of your life that was very, very excellent. You had an eye for excellence, and then all of a sudden you're just kinda satisfied with things as they are. And I felt myself drifting into that place. "You know, I've just been so, you know, pushy for excellence and, oh, I feel like I'm just like the bad guy 'cause I come in and say, 'Well, didn't you see these seven things and dah-dah-dah-dah-dah?'" Excellence cost. It cost to be excellent. There's a price to being excellent, and I figured, "Well, you know, lemme just leave everybody alone and just kinda be satisfied with it. It's not quite like I would want it, but lemme just kinda be satisfied, you know, with that spot on the carpet".
Twenty years ago, I wouldn't be satisfied with it. "Lemme just be kinda satisfied with some stinking bathrooms". Twenty years ago, I wouldn't have tolerated it. That's the symptoms of complacency. Here's the second symptom of complacency, number two: it is the rejection of things as they might be. The rejection of things as they might be. It is, "Uh, that's good enough". That becomes your new standard. "Uh, that's good enough". That's your new standard now. It's not like you want it. "It's just good enough". That's your new standard. Uh-uh, uh-uh. I so saw myself in this. I so saw myself with these two symptoms, which let me know, "Dude, the greatest thing that ever happened to you was an awareness of this message you're gonna preach," because I found that I had these two symptoms setting themselves up in my life.
And thank God I can do something about it, because here's a big deception: complacency draws false strength from looking back. Complacency draws false strength from looking back. I know we've heard a lotta neat things about looking back, but you gotta be careful with complacency, 'cause complacency looks back at the past successes and it draws false strength. And Paul was like, "This one thing I keep doing: I'm forgetting about things that are before me. I'm pursuing, and I'm pressing, and I'm going after those things that are ahead of me". Even an athlete who knows how to do it, do this, he becomes one of the greatest athletes in the world because he's not trying to live off the success of the past.