Joel Osteen - Remember What God Said
I want to talk to you today about Remember What God Said. We all have promises that God has put in our heart, things we know he's spoken to us, how we're going to accomplish a dream, see a problem turn around, beat the addiction, meet the right person. At one time we knew it was going to happen, we were praying, believing, passionate. But when it's taking longer than we thought, when we gone to disappointment, people didn't come through, the medical report isn't improving, negative thoughts start to play louder and louder - "It's never going to work out. You're never going to get well. You'll never see your family restored".
Too often we left those thoughts drown out what God has spoken to us. If you're going to stay in faith, you have to remember what God said. Go back to the promises. Go back to that time He whispered to you in the night. Start thanking him for what he told you. Start declaring favor, victory, healing. You have to keep your faith stirred up. Keep those promises on the forefront of your mind. God is faithful. He doesn't tell you something and then not do it. The scripture says (2 Corinthians 1:20), "All of his promises are YES and AMEN". It may not happen on our timetable or the way we think, but what God promised is on the way.
It's easy to believe when things are going our way, but most of the time the promise I won't come to pass without a test. When you're under pressure, you don't understand why it's taking so long and why those people didn't keep their word, you'll be tempted the live frustrated, and worried, afraid - recognize, that's a test. The enemy would love for you to forget what God promised. He'd love for you to get so caught up in what's not happening, so focused on how your child isn't doing right. The pandemic hit, now there's no way you can have a good year. No, remember what God said: even in famine you will have more than enough. Whatever you touch will prosper and succeed. The economy is not your Source - God is your Source. You're connected to a supply line that will never run dry.
But there's always something trying to steal the seed of God's word out of your heart. Because when you keep that seed watered, you keep thanking God for what he promised, you keep talkin like it's on the way, you constantly meditating on what he said, then you're going to see the faithfulness of God. He's going to make things happen, that you couldn't make happen.
Jesus said in John 11:40, "Did not I tell you, if you believe, you will see the glory of God". You may be facing a sickness, you're so worried, stressed out. God is saying, "Did not I tell you, I will restore Health unto you? Did not I tell you, by my stripes you are healed? Did not I tell you, the number of your days I will fulfill"? Why don't you start thanking God for what he told you, instead of letting the negative thoughts play? The reason we're discourage many times is we forgotten what God said. It's not complicated - go back to His promises. Go back to what He whispered to you in the night. Start remembering what He spoken over you, replaying that over and over. As you dwell on these promises - fear has to leave. Doubt, worry cannot stay, faith will rise in your heart.
Maybe your child is off course, running with a wrong crowd and you're frustrated, thinking they're never goin to change. God is saying, "Did not I tell you that as for you and your house, you will serve the Lord? Did not I tell you that your children will be mighty in the land"? When you wake up in the middle of the night tempted to worry - turn it around: "Lord, thank you for what you've said, that my children will fulfill their destiny".
There's a battle taking place in our mind. The enemy comes against us with thoughts: thoughts of doubt, fear, worry. His goal is to keep your ming so fill with the negative, that you're so preoccupied with what's not going to work out, how you can't break the addiction, how you'll never meet the right person, that you never think about what God promised you. You have to take control of your thought life. When worry comes, don't go on autopilot, don't just let it play, stay on the offensive. On purpose remember what God said. Thank Him that He's making a way where you don't see a way. That Him that He is always causing you to triumph. Thank Him that what was meant for harm He is turning for your advantage. Thank Him that He is taking you from glory to glory, from victory to victory.
A young lady I know went through a breakup in a relationship. She though this would be the person she would marry. She was so discouraged, so down on life, down on herself. We all go through disappointments, loss, things that are not fair. If we stay focused on the hurts, "God, why did this happen? I don't understand it" - that is going to keep us way down. We'll miss the new things God has in store. I know it's not easy, but you have to make this shift in your thinking - quick dwelling on the hurts and start dwelling on what God promised you. God is saying, "Did not I tell you I will give you beauty for those ashes? Did not I tell you weeping endures for a night, but joy comes in the morning? Did not I tell you that I will pay you back double for the unfair things that have happened"?
God has you in the palm of His hands. He is not brought you this far to leave you. That loss, the breakup - yes, it's painful, but it didn't stop your destiny. God has a new beginning. He is about to open new doors, bring new relationships. You haven't seen your best days. The reason the enemy is fighting you is he knows there's something amazing in your future. You're on the verge of seeing blessing, favor, influence like you've never seen. Now, don't let these negative keep you where you are. Start remembering what God said.
In the scripture, when Job was in the middle of all his lost and heartbreak, it looked like he has seen his best days, everything had going wrong. God said to him (Job 8:21), "I will yet fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy". This was in chapter 8 - things didn't turn around until chapter 42. I can imagine Job sitting in the ashes, discouraged, thinking about all that is going wrong. He was tempted to feel sorry for himself, give up on life, but then he remembered what God promised: "He is going to fill my mouth with laughter".
I can hear him saying, "Lord, thank you that I'm gonna dream again. I'm gonna laugh again. I'm going to love again". When he could have been complaining, right in the middle of the difficulty, he looked up and said, "I know my Redeemer lives". He was saying, "I know God is still on the throne. I know that He is bigger than this adversity. I know my latter days will be better than my former days". He kept remembering what God said. Not what the circumstances v, not what his emotion said, not what the negative thoughts said. When you keep reminding what God promised - you're going to see Him showed out in your life. When that test resolved, Job come out with twice what he had before.
You may have gone through loss, disappointment - that is not how your story ends. It may be painful now, you're hurting - God sees it. He is not only going to help you through, but He is going to fill your mouth with laugher. There is great joy in your future. The right people are already headed your way. New relationships, favor like you've never seen. Now, don't fall into the trap of complaining, living in self-pity, thinking it's all downhill from here - you're remembering the wrong things. Start remembering what God said, that there's beauty for those ashes, that double is coming: double the joy, double the peace, double the resources. You're not going to just come out, God says you're going to come out better, stronger, healthier, happier, more fulfilled.
Now, do like Job and keep thanking God for what He said. Keep declaring "My Redeemer lives". All through the day in your thoughts, "Father, thank You that yours plans for me are for good. Thank You that You are fill my mouth with laughter again". When you are under pressure is so important what you allowing to play in your mind. Thoughts will tell you all the reasons why it's not going to work out. Sometimes people will tell you how you'll never break the addiction. "You can't start that business". You have to go back to what God said, not what people said. No disrespect, not what the experts said, not what your mind says, not how you feel, but to what God promised.
Maybe you're discouraged over how long your dream is taking, how impossible it looks. God is saying, "Did not I tell you what I started I will finish? Did not I tell you if you delight yourself in Me I will give you the desires of your heart"? Thew medical report wasn't good, now you're upset - "Did not I tell you no weapon formed against you will prosper"? People at the office are playing politics, trying to push you down. They have more influence, more seniority - "Did not I tell you when the enemy comes in like a flood, I will rise up a barrier? Did not I tell you I will fight your battles for you? Did not I tell you I'm preparing a table before you in the presence of your enemies"?
When you remember what God said, you won't be worried - you'll have peace in the midst of the storm. You will have faith to believe for the impossible. You will have the courage to defeat giants. The endurance to outlast the opposition. The favor to accomplish more that you though possible.
It was earlier Sunday morning. Jesus has just been crucified and risen from the dead. Three women went to the tomb to care for Jesus's body. When they arrived, they noticed something was wrong, the stone was rolled away. They looked in and Jesus's body was gone. They was so distract. As hey set there weeping, not knowing what to do, suddenly two men appeared to them - they were angels, they were wearing white robs, so brilliant, radiating a such of light, these women can hardly look at them. They were terrified. The angels said (Luke 24:5-6), "Why are you looking in a tomb for someone who is alive. Jesus is not here. He has risen from the dead".
I can imagine how these ladies were sitting there on awe, trying to take it all in. The angels went on to say (Luke 24:5-6), "Don't you remember what he told you in Galilee, that He would be betrayed and crucified, then on the third day he would rise from the dead"? The next verse says (Luke 24:7), "Then they remembered what Jesus said, they rushed back to tell the disciples". These women came to the tomb discouraged, depressed, defeated - they wend back home excited, passioned, full of faith, full of hope. They couldn't wait to tell the other disciples.
When you remember what God says, it will change your perspective. As long as you are dwelling on negative, on what didn't work out, how impossible it is, that is going to keep you discouraged. God is saying to you what the angels said to them, "Don't you remember what I told you? Don't you remember I said you will lend and not borrow? Don't you remember I said that my mercy is bigger than your mistakes". God has you hearing this for one reason, so you'll remember what He has promised you. You need to go back to what God has spoken to you. Go back to that dream He gave you in the night. Go back to the promise that He whispered in your spirit. You have to stir it up. Get your passion back. Get your hopes up. Start talking like it's on the way. Start thanking God that it's coming.
The scripture says, these ladies were perplexed, overwhelmed, confused, their world has been turned upside-down. Under all the pressure, with all the stress of loosing their friend, they forgot what Jesus had told them. What's interesting is He told them what is going to happen not 20 years earlier, that would make sense, been a long time, they forgot. Jesus told them just a few days before. But when they came under depression, when they felt overwhelmed they forgot what He said.
That's the time you have to be on guard. When life is stressful, you have a setback in your finances, you're struggling with depression - don't let those negative thoughts drown out what God has promised. Maybe you are under pressure now. This pandemic left many people anxious, worried, thinking "What's gonna happen with my finances? What about my children? Things are put on hold". It's easy to forget what God's promised.
Like that angel, I'm saying "Remember what God told you". You may feel alone, but He said "I'll never leave you. I'll stay closer than a brother". Your business slows down, you don't know how you're going to make ends meet. He said, "I'll make streams in the desert. I'll supply your needs according to My reaches". That anxiety, the depression, the addiction seems permanent. He says, "The enemy you see today you'll see no more". He says, "Greater is He that is in you, than what's trying to stop you". He says, "Whom the Son sets free is free indeed".
Are you remembering what He said, or are you let the circumstances, the trouble, the stress cause you to dwell on the negative and think about how it's not going to work out? When we are under the pressure, the mistake we make many times is we go by what we see instead of what God says. "Well, Joel, look at that medical report. Look at my finances. Look how big the obstacles are". As long as you are going by what you see, you're going to be worried, stressed. You have to start going by what God said. Here's the good news: what He said will override what you see.
When my father passed and I stepped up to pastor the church, what I saw when I looked to the mirror was someone that was inexperienced, intimidated, unqualified. Thoughts told me that nobody would listen to me, I was going to get up here and fail. I was tempted to live worried, but I did what I asked you to do: I didn't go by what I saw, I went by what God says. I felt weak, but I remembered that God said "I am strong in the Lord". I didn't think I can do it, but I remembered what God said, "I can do all things through Christ". I had some people that don't want me to succeed, some critics that have large following, looks like they would discredit me, hold me down, but I remember what God said, that promotion doesn't come from people, it comes from the Lord.
People don't determine your destiny. They cannot stop the calling on your life. They may look bigger, more powerful, more influential - don't go by what you see, go by what God says. He says you're a giant-killer. He says you're more that a conquer. He says that trap the enemy set for you, they will fall in themselves.
Matthew 14, Jesus told the disciples to get in a boat, and go to the other side of the lake - He was going to meet them there. The disciples started to rowing that way, everything was going fine, until the winds picked up, the waves got rough, now they were struggling to make it hour after hour. At 3:00 in the morning they looked up and this figure came walking on the water. They thought it was a ghost. They were so afraid, the scripture says they screamed in terror. They didn't seen anything like this.
Jesus told them it was Him. Peter was not only astonished, he was inspired. He said (Matthew 14:28-29), "Lord, if it's really you, tell me to come to you by walking on the water. Jesus answered saying, 'Alright, Peter, you can come. You too can walk on the water'". Peter climbed over the site of the boat, stepped into the water, but his feet didn't go down. He started walking on the top of the water, defying the odds. I can imagine how amaze he was, how in awe. He took step after step looking at Jesus, marveling at what was happening. but then he begin to look around at the waves, he looked at how strong the wind was, how the boat was rocking, how he was in the middle of the water. Suddenly he begin to sink. He cried out, "Lord, please save me". Jesus reach down and helped him back into the boat.
As long as Peter was focused on what Jesus said, "Walk on the water. Come here with Me" he was fine. But when he started focusing on what he saw - the wind, the waves - he begin to drown, be afraid, "I can't do this". It's the same principle in life. If you stay focused on what you see, you can get talked out of your dreams. If you are focused on how big the obstacles are, how the medical report are not good, how you'll never get out of debt, then you'll be limited. You have to stay focused on what God said. When you're focused on what He promised, you walk on water. You go places you could go on your own. You'll overcome obstacles that are much bigger. The winds, the waves are a test: are you going to live distracted and focused on negative, "This problem is too big. This addiction seems permanent. I don't have the finances to go to college. I'll never get out of this neighborhood" - that's going to cause you to sink.
You have to change your focus from what you see to what God said. You have to walk by faith and not by sight. What you're up against may seem impossible, but God created you to walk on water. He created you to defy the odds. He created you to go further than people said you can go. He created you to defeat giants. He created you to beat the cancer. He created you to acquire the Compaq Centers. Yes, it seems unlikely, yes it may seems like you don't have the talent, you may be afraid - that's okay, the key is don't focus on what you see, focus on what God said. That's what is going to fuel your faith, that's when you are going to see far and beyond favor, favor that catapult you ahead.
God told Nehemiah he was to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem, but Nehemiah wasn't a builder, he was a cup bearer to the king, living a thousands miles away. He didn't have the resources, the staff, the influence, but God never ask you to do something and the doesn't give the ability to do it. God was saying to Nehemiah: you're going to walk on water, you are going to do something over your head, something that you are not qualified for, something where you don't have the connection, the experience.
Nehemiah could've look to the circumstances, talk "God, you've got the wrong person. I'll never accomplish this dream". But Nehemiah understood this principle - he didn't go by what he saw, he went by what God said. When you step out in faith, God will open the door that no person can shut. He'll bring the right people, He will make things happen, that you couldn't make happen.
God gave Nehemiah favor with the king. The king not only let him have the time off witch was unprecedented, but the king gave him a letter requiring people to give him the materials and resources he needed. It should've taken years, but Nehemiah rebuilt the wall in just 52 days.
God have some things in your future, where you're going to walk on water. You are going to accomplish what seems impossible. You are going to overcome what seems insurmountable. Now do your part, don't focus on the winds, the waves, the impossibilities - that's going to talk you out of it. Focus on what God said. Let His promises playing in your mind over and over. That dream He put in your heart, everyday thank Him for it. Those secret things He whispered to you in the night - dare to believe that they're on the way.
A friend of mine knew an older gentleman that was a fighter pilot in World War II. He not only fly missions, but he was a flight trainer. He had trained this young man, many of them only 18-years old how to fly planes. Before he ever took them up in the air, they spent ours going to instruments, learning what they did and what cause the plane to function. He stress the importance of always flying the plane by the instruments, not by what they saw. They spent mounts and mounts on the ground in flight simulators, flying plane strictly by the instruments.
After one young pilot completed the program, he took him up in the air. The pilot was doing great, everything running smoothly, just like his training. A few minutes latter a storm suddenly arose. They found themselves in bad weather, dark clouds, the plane started bouncing around. They got to the point they couldn't see anything. This young pilot panicked. Instead of going by his instruments, following his training, he looked around at all the clouds, the rain. He felt the plane shaking, he became disoriented and confused. He couldn't tell if he was gaining altitude or loosing altitude. He kept straighting out the window to get some kind of visual sign as a witch direction to go.
Finally the flight instructor took a blanket that was use to cover the windshield, where the plane were stored and he clipped in place. Now the young pilot couldn't see anything. He has no choice except to go by instruments. In a few minutes they came out of the storm and eventually landed the plane safely.
Sometimes like this young pilot, we know what God promised us, we have the instruments, we do good on the ground, we quote the scripture, we believed, but when the storm hits, we started looking at the clouds, the winds. Is bumpy, we don't see a way. Too often we panic, live worried. But you have to come back to the instruments. You can't go by what you see or you'll get discouraged. You may not see anything except the dark clouds, everywhere you look is no visibility, no sign of how it's going to work out. Go back to your instruments - remember what God promised you. There's not a storm you're facing that's a surprise to God. There's not a problem you're in that He can's get you out of. But when we're under pressure, when life get stressful it's easy to focus on the wrong things.
Are you looking at the window, focused on the storm, or you're focused on what God promised you? He spoken dreams to your heart. He's whispering things to you in the night. The enemy has tried to drown they out with negative thoughts, negative circumstances, but they are still alive. What God started He is going to finish. Now, do your part and remember what He said. Keep declaring what He promised, keep thanking Him for it. If you'll do this, I believe and declare like Peter you are going to walk on water, you are going to defy the odds. Like Nehemiah you are going to accomplish dreams bigger than you thought. And like this pilot, you are gonna come through every storm safely. I speak strength over you, I speak victory, I speak healing, breakthroughs, favor, abundance, the fullness of your destiny, in Jesus name.