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Frankie Mazzapica - Great Memories Are Powerful Anchors

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    Frankie Mazzapica - Great Memories Are Powerful Anchors

Frankie Mazzapica: Thank you for tuning in today. My name is Frankie Mazzapica. The title of today's message is "Great Memories are Powerful Anchors". Today, you're gonna hear myself speak and you're also gonna hear my wife, Allie, and I know that you're gonna be blessed along, while we're sharing our message with you. So, I want to just kinda let you know what we're gonna be talking about today. We actually have two targets. I'm gonna be sharing with you your personal walk with the Lord. I'm gonna be reminding you of what God has done for you so that it will prove to be an anchor for you as you go forward.

And then, Allie is gonna come up and she's gonna speak from a unique perspective. She's gonna talk to you about mothers in the Lord and fathers in the Lord and brothers and sisters in the Lord. And your blood mother, your blood father, your blood brothers and sisters, maybe they are your father, et cetera, in the Lord, maybe they're not. In my case, when I was 19 years old, I was spiritually adopted by a lady named Jeanne Mayo. She became my mother in the Lord. She spoke into my life and pulled me towards the direction that God had for me. My father is my best friend. I have a wonderful mom who birthed me. But there was a certain point in my life where they almost needed to pass the baton, even though I'm still very close to both of them. It was time for a spiritual voice to take me to the next level.

So, that's what Allie is gonna talk about. We got three major points for you today. We're gonna talk about how God moments, moments in your life where you know like you, like know you know that God was there for you. Maybe you were driving down the street, you almost got into a car accident, you hit the brakes, "Jesus, help me"! You don't have time to say, "Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done". You don't have time for that. "Jesus, help me"! You know God was there for you. And then there are other moments in your life when you look back and you're like, "I almost died in that season. Not physically, but all of me almost died the inside and I know God was there for me".

So, we got three major points. How these anchors, these God moments, how they keep us from drifting. Secondly, how they keep us stable when the storm comes. How many people in the room say, "It's not if the storm comes, it's when the storm comes"? That anchors keep us stable. And then number three, I wanna talk about how not only do anchors keep us from drifting, keep us stable in a storm, but they actually pull us forward to God's plan in our life. So, let's just... I wanna visually illustrate this. Mary, the mother of Jesus, she's gonna be our case study today. She birthed the Lord and shepherds came shortly after Jesus was born. They saw Jesus and they went and told others what they saw.

Now, in Luke chapter 2, verse 18 it says this, that all who heard what the disciples had to say, all the things they had to say. They were astonished. They couldn't believe it. But Mary took all these things that were happening to her, tucked them into her heart and thought about them often. She took these moments and experiences and allowed them to be an anchor in her life to remind her that God had called her to for a specific purpose.

You see, what the enemy wants to do is he wants to take every single moment that you've ever had with God and help us and drag us towards the direction of forgetfulness so that we are consumed without rehearsing what God has done, but consumed with every mistake and regret we've ever had, to keep us consumed with the problems and the challenges that we have. And what Mary is saying is, "Hey, we all have a tendency to drift". Leave memories planted in your mind. It will keep you from drifting from what God has called you towards. Allie, why don't you illustrate this point?

Allie Mazzapica: All right. Well, growing up as a little girl, I always felt something. Like, I was called to something. I don't know why because I didn't grow up in a ministry family. I just loved Jesus and I felt like there was more and he was calling me to something. And I just kind of lived my life ebb and flow like that, ups and downs, throughout my teenage years. You know how that goes. But when I was 19, I was attending a Bible study and I was loving it. That was an awesome godly family who was leading it. There was incredible kids there, I was learning so much, and I enjoyed going. And I remember one night I walked into the kitchen, I was getting a drink, and I saw a couple of the leaders and the moms talking and they were talking about how they were so glad that their son was dating this girl because she doesn't come from a divorced family, a broken family, and all that baggage that would come with that and, oh, my goodness. They were just going on and on and on together.

And what they didn't realize was that a little girl, or a grown woman of 19 had just walked into the kitchen and I came from a broken family and I was hearing that I had lots of baggage and I had all these things and I remember pondering that and I remember thinking, I gotta discern through. Is this something that I'm supposed to be hearing or thinking or taking in? And I just was, just, sort of distraught. I mean, what I realize now in my 40s and X amount of years in ministry is that baggage, we all have it. You don't have to come from a broken family or you don't have to come from what I came from. We all have baggage, unfortunately. Like, you have baggage. I'm sorry to tell you, but you got some baggage. Anybody got baggage?

And I just realized later, you know, this analogy really stuck with me is that, you know, you get on a plane and the baggage is tagged to where you're going. It says where you're going, it's put in the bottom of the plane, but that baggage actually doesn't determine where you end up. You know who does? The pilot. And what really matters is who is your pilot, who is your anchor. And so, that was learned way later. At 19, I did not understand that. So, I was at the altar several times asking the Lord, "Help me, God, I feel like I'm called, but I clearly have baggage. What am I gonna do with my life? How do I deal with this"? You know, "Help me". And I remember one morning, it was a Sunday, one of the leaders in the church came down and prayed for me and just was trust, just, like, pouring into me and said, "Allie, I really feel like you're called to the ministry, and I don't know why, but I see flags over your head".

And I remember thinking, flags? Oh, no. Does this mean missions? Like, I don't think I'm called to missions. I know I'm called to something, but what do flags mean? And I just kept that in my heart, like Mary, just held it here. And it was a couple of months later that I was volunteering at a local ministry, it was the district office youth ministry up in Canada, Alberta, and I was put in charge of driving the head speaker, Jeanne Mayo, back and forth to the airport and to her hotel, and we just hit it off for three days.

And she told me, "Allie, I want you to come. I want you to intern. I want you to work under me. I wanna give you my shoes. I want you to walk in them until you come. I feel like you're called to the ministry". And I was like, "Okay. Oh, my goodness". And sure enough, about nine months later I was in Rockford, Illinois, I met Frankie, and the first day I walked into that sanctuary and I lifted my hands to worship the Lord, do you wanna know what was in the ceiling? Every single flag of every single country that ever existed up in the air. And I thought, God, I'm where I'm supposed to be. And he was right. It wasn't pizza.

Frankie Mazzapica: But now I wanna talk about how an anchor keeps us steady in a storm. Drifting, here's another illustration, is if you're at the beach and you're on a towel or a lawn chair and you go out into the ocean and you're frolicking around for about a half an hour and then you look up to where you came from and your beach chair is not in front of you. Your beach chair is actually way over there, but without realizing it, you drifted over and an anchor keeps you from drifting, these God moments. But then the storm comes and that's when sailors and people, even individual boaters, they're on the boat themselves, they have to drop this anchor when the storm comes. One of these days a young man is gonna come up to my daughter and he's gonna fall in love with her and then he's gonna come to me and he's gonna ask me, he better ask me, if he can marry my daughter, I've got two of them, and I'm gonna ask him this question. "When the storm comes, and it will come, where are you gonna run"? And then I'm gonna ask him, "Where do you get your strength from"?

See, some people get their strength by just going off alone and figuring it out and then they stay in a season way too long because their anchor is on their own intellect. They're gonna figure this thing out. But Mary, she dropped anchor in the middle of a storm and it was a big storm, too. You see, as Jesus was going through his ministry there were times, many times, five times, in the book of Mark where multitudes, thousands of people, would get around him because they wanted to see healings or they wanted to experience healings or even deliverances because spirits were tormenting them. And the Bible says in Mark chapter 3, verse 20, it says this, "One time he was in a home and there were so many people around him that he didn't even have time to sit down and eat". In verse 21 it says this, "And then his family and his own people came to that gathering," to that house where he was trying to eat, "and they came in with the intention of grabbing him by force and dragging him out of that crowd because they had thought that he had gone crazy".

There is no battle that's worse than seeing your child go through a season that you cannot fix. There are battles that are so overwhelming because there are situations taking place that are out of your control. They're out of your control. You know they're out of your control because you can't fix them. And so, Mary had to dig down deep and drop an anchor and say, "I know what's happening right now is beyond my own control, but I refuse to stop thinking about the memories, and the memories and the promises that God put in my heart. I'm hanging on to him and I'm thinking about them often in the middle of a storm". You know what I've learned about storms? Is that all storms eventually run out of rain. All storms have an expiration date. And it's in the middle of those storms where we drop anchor and we say, "God, I'm just gonna hang on. You've always been there, I'm gonna hang on". Allie, why don't you illustrate this point for us?

Allie Mazzapica: Yeah. So, I've been through many storms over the last, I don't know, 44 years of my life, but one of the hardest ones, I believe, is when I lost my dad, and it's still, rocks me. In the first service, I just couldn't, hardly hold it together, and it was seven years ago and you'd think, man, that's a long time ago. It never gets that normal. But I remember I was struggling and I was traveling back and forth to Canada. He was 60 when he passed away and I look at him, like, 15 years from 60, that's way too young to pass away and it was way too young for me to lose him and for my kids to lose their grandpa. And he would call me every day and then it was a day where he stopped calling.

And I remember going back and forth and I had to come to church the next weekend after he had passed and it had been a two year battle of me traveling with my little three year old back and forth and my kids were left here with...we were struggling. And I remember coming and telling Frankie, "I don't wanna go to church, I don't wanna go back. I can't sit on that front row and I can't pray for people because I don't even have faith. I'm so angry at God. I'm so frustrated. I don't understand what he did. Why didn't he get healed"? And I was so rocked. My faith was just, I felt like I didn't have it, so how could I pour out or be a pastor's wife or come to church and be anything to anybody if I didn't have it myself?

And I remember just asking the Lord and just begging him to help me, but I didn't know how because I didn't even want to talk to him, I didn't even wanna pray. And I looked to Francine, who was a spiritual mentor to me, and I just told her, "I'm angry, I'm mad. I don't wanna be here. I don't... what do I do"? And she said, "Allie, when you're angry and when you're mad, you don't turn your back on God and be angry and mad over here. You turn towards him and you yell and you scream and you tell him you're mad and you tell him you're angry, you tell him you're hurting. You tell him you're broken and you let him heal you. In those moments, you don't turn away". And when I did that, things shifted and things changed and I had my relationship back with him, but I still didn't wanna sit on that front row and I still didn't wanna pray and I still didn't wanna smile and I didn't wanna worship.

And I just thought, you know what I'm gonna do? I'm gonna start a parking lot ministry because I can go out to that street and I can wave signs and I don't have to talk to people and I can smile and they don't have to know if it's real or if it's fake, I can just smile. So, sure enough, I got, like, 40 signs. I think there was five of us the first day and many of you guys were on that parking lot team for many years. We blasted worship music, we waved people in, we did all the things. Woodlands Township shut us down four years later. That's fine. That's fine. But it healed me during that time.

And I needed those years of healing to be out there with that team and for those people to actually pour into me. And I remember it was, having other people smile at me when they drove in and waved, that healed my heart because I knew. I was like, "Thank you, Dad, because this came from what you went through". And so, if you're hurting today, I just wanna say, do something that will make someone else smile because it'll bring your smile. It'll heal you, it'll fill you, it'll feed you. And I don't even know what that ending part is, but I'm gonna shift it over to you because...

Frankie Mazzapica: You see, sometimes it's somebody else that's holding the anchor for you and you're hanging on to them and they refuse for you to leave, but they're hanging on and they're saying, "This will pass. This will get through". And Allie needed someone else to have faith for her when she didn't have faith for herself. And you are called to be that brother or sister or mother in the Lord to say, "Look, I know you don't believe in yourself, but I'm gonna believe in you and I'm gonna tell you what God's called you to do until you believe in yourself just as much as I believe in you". That is an assignment on your life, to be an anchor in their life in the middle of a storm. Come on, put your hands together for that. If no one has ever told you who you are, let me just take a minute to tell you who you are.

In Ephesians chapter 2, verse 10 it says this. "You are God's masterpiece". He's made a lot of things, but you are his masterpiece. You know when an artist has a masterpiece, he backs up and he smiles and he nods. He says, "You are my masterpiece". And then, he knew that we were gonna be so imperfect, so he says this, "I have created you brand new," whether you feel like it or not, "I have created you brand new in Christ. You are a part of my Son". It's like your spirit and your physical body, they're all one, they're a part, he goes, "I have made you a part of my Son so that you will fulfill the plans that I have before you, that I have written long, long ago". That is an anchor. That right there is an anchor. I know somebody who went and got an ID bracelet and on it, it says, "Ephesians 2:10".

To be an anchor, God has made me a masterpiece and he has plans for me. There is a term called kedging. An anchor keeps you from drifting, it keeps you safe in the middle of a storm, but then there's a term called kedging where they don't use, sailors don't use an anchor to stay still and steady, they use it during the doldrums. A doldrum is a place where the wind is not blowing, you're stuck. There's no momentum behind you or there's problems that's keeping you from moving forward.

And so, what these sailors do is they don't drop an anchor. They actually go forward and throw it ahead of them. They throw it, they back up and they just keep throwing it until it grabs something and then they pull themselves forward to that place that they're trying to go. And then once they get there, they do it all over again. They throw it forward, they throw it forward, and they just keep pulling themselves forward and what is that? It's the same memory that Mary tucked in her heart to stay stable. She takes that memory of everything that the Lord has done for her and she says, "If God did it for me, if he promised it for me, I'm gonna keep on believing it and I'm gonna allow that to pull me forward". Are you with me? Allie, will you illustrate that point for us?

Allie Mazzapica: Yes. Okay, so when Frankie came to me at 25 and he said, "I'm ready to start a church and we're gonna start one," I said, "No, we are not starting a church". He said, "Yes, we are". I said, "No, we're not". I do youth, not adults. I know how to work with youth. I do not know how to work with adults. I'm 25, I cannot do this. I have a 10 month old. No, we are not starting a church. But of course, as you can see, we started a church. Nineteen years later, here we are. I remember thinking, I'm not qualified. I don't sing. I don't play piano. I don't have Crystal's voice, I didn't know Crystal at the time.

I don't have Spencer's voice, I didn't know Spence, I don't have what it takes, I don't speak. I don't do anything. I have a nose ring, Frankie. I have a nose ring. How am I gonna be the pastor's wife of a church? He's like, "Just be you. Just be you. Just be you". And I'm like, "Okay, I'll be me, but you know me," and I, really, just prayed. I'm like, "Lord, help me because I feel so unqualified. I was not raised in a ministry family. I did not go to a billion years of Bible school. I don't know a million, like, how do I do this"? And I remember the Holy Spirit just speaking to me and I was in my bathroom and he said, "I want you to be a foundation. Just be you and be a foundation and I will bring the two by fours and the shingles and the load bearing beams. And I will bring," in other words, "the people to build this thing and you don't have to be all that. You be you and I will fill the gaps and I will put people around you guys and I will make it happen".

And here you are. And so, thank you. And what I wasn't remembering in that moment was the flags. Because I was called to this. Remember the flags. Remember what was put in your heart. Remember you were called. And so, as I walk on this stage today, I have to remember, even through the storms and even through all the things, it's not me. It's the anchor that keeps me where I need to be and it's him and it's only by him and it's only to his glory. And I'm so thankful.

So, whatever you need to remember, maybe you're Joseph and your family has thrown you in the pit or maybe you're David and you're running from a Saul and you're in a cave or maybe you're Esther and you know what you're called to, but it means leaving your family or leaving the things you love or maybe you're Jesus and you say, "Please take this cup from me," and you know that he won't because you have to do the thing. And so, if that's you, I wanna say it's okay. Just remember whatever those flags are in your life. Remember the reward on the other side is so much bigger and my reward is my children. And I look at them and I go, man, God, what you have done for me and our family and what you've created is far beyond what I could have ever imagined and I am so rewarded and I thank you. But whatever pit or cave or whatever you're in, just remember your flag and trust him.

Frankie Mazzapica: So, you know how the gospels unfold. All the things about her Son that served to be an anchor all of a sudden got rocked because now she's looking at her Son hanging on the cross. She watches her anchor that has kept her through, all of a sudden all but collapse. So what does she do? She goes to her very last memory, where Jesus said this in Luke 24:49. It says, "Go to Jerusalem and wait, wait for the Father to send the promise of blessing you with power". So she goes and she says, "All I got is that last word. That's all I got. I'm broken. I'm crushed. I just have that last word".

She takes it. She throws it forward. And the Bible says in Acts chapter 1, verse 14, that as she was waiting, actively waiting. To actively wait is to pray while you wait. That all of a sudden the Spirit of the Lord came upon her and another 119 people. And what she had hoped for was overwhelmed by something that she could not imagine. Hang on to the very last word, the very last promise that was in your spirit, and let him pull you forward. He will exceed your expectations. Can you put your hands together for that?

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