Joyce Meyer - You Belong to God - Part 1
I'm gonna start with a question, what are you worth? Now, you know, normally when somebody asks that question, the first thing we think of is our finances, or maybe our job position, or our accomplishments. In the world, we learn how to tie our worth and value to what we do but in God's kingdom, he wants us to understand that our worth and value is wrapped up in who we are in him, not what we do. I'mma say it again, your worth and value is not determined by what you do, or the important people you know, or the job title you have, how much education you have. Your worth and value is determined by being a child of God. And I can tell you what you're worth. Every one of you is worth the Son of God. "For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whoever believes in him might not perish but have everlasting life". You're purchased with a price.
1 Corinthians 6:20, "God paid a tremendous price for you and you belong to him". You don't belong to yourself. You may think you do, but in reality, you belong to the Lord. 1 Corinthians 6:20, "You were bought with a price [purchased with a preciousness and paid for, made his own]. So then, honor God and bring glory to him in your body". And I think we might go on to say, and with your life. Are we glorifying God with our life? Are we glorifying God with our lifestyles? Are we glorifying God with our choices and our decisions? Are we glorifying God with our thoughts, with our words, with our choice of entertainment? Can I tell ya something? God's not interested in just having a Sunday morning relationship with you. He wants to invade every single area of your life. Good, where's those three people that are happy?
See, we think about being filled with the spirit and that's sounds like fun. "Oh, yes, I wanna be full of the Holy Ghost". But you know what happened to me when I was filled with the Holy Spirit is God starting Messin' in stuff that I didn't want him to mess in. You know, you can just go sit on a church pew on Sunday morning and just be a miserable saint instead of a miserable sinner. It's one thing to be lost and be miserable, it's another thing to be saved and still be miserable. Surely, we can understand that Jesus didn't die so we can be miserable, and murmur, and complain, and grumble all the time, be unhappy, have no peace, worry about everything. He died for us to have a totally different quality of life and he bought us back from the enemy. I said, he bought us back from the enemy. He paid for us and he bought us back.
Now, anything that you have paid for and bought, you have a strong sensing that it's yours and you really don't want anybody else Messin' with it. It's yours, you can do what you want to with it. Well, we have been bought and paid for with the precious blood of Jesus Christ. We no longer belong to the devil, but the news tonight is you no longer belong to yourself either. Well now, you have freewill and you can do anything you want to. I'm not saying that you can't. You can live any kind of life you want to. And you may, you know, live a compromising lifestyle and still squeak into heaven but you won't be happy, and you won't help the Kingdom of God, and you won't be a good witness to other people. But tonight, you can do some turnaround and make some decisions. We all have to come to a crisis point in our life and maybe some of you have already been at that place and you've made a real serious decision about your walk with God.
I believe many of you have but I'm also well aware that I'm not just talking to the people in this room tonight. There are people all over the world watching by television in 80 different languages and I wanna make sure that you know that you really do not belong to yourself. You have been bought with a price and God expects you to surrender your life to him. We need to consecrate ourselves to God and to be consecrated means to be set apart for a special use of a special purpose. We're going deeper tonight, whether you want to or not. "Well, sister Joyce, I'm hurtin' and I thought you'd comfort me". Oh, let me tell ya something, if you talk about big time comfort, you just start lettin' God have control of your life.
Now, it's gonna be a fight to start with, I'll tell ya that right now 'cause your flesh is used to ruling things. And how many of you know that our flesh can just really throw some fits? But oh, when you finally make it through, wow, does life get sweet. You don't have to worry, you don't have to compare yourself with other people. You don't have to try to impress people. Your worth and value's not in what you do. You can do what you do for right reasons. You don't have to get upset if you don't do everything perfect all the time because you belong to somebody that's greater than you are and greater than anybody else out there. So, what are you worth? The blood of Jesus Christ. What are you worth? All the death, the misery, the pain that Jesus willingly took on himself and he would have done it if you would have been the only person on the earth. That's how much God loves you and that's how much you're worth.
So, if anybody would ever ask you again how much you're worth, you need to say, you might have to do a little preaching afterwards. But you need to say, "More than you can ever possibly imagine". That'll shake 'em up a little bit, amen? You know, how many of you wanna enjoy your life more? Okay, now, I'm just gonna tell ya something, you can't enjoy your life more if you don't learn to enjoy yourself more. Somebody over here liked that. You can't enjoy your life more if you don't learn to enjoy yourself more and for that matter, enjoy God more. I believe the high call on our life is to enjoy God. Serving God is not a drudgery. I'll tell ya what, my journey with God, once I really got on board with God and figured out that he was gonna get his way in the end, see, really how hard it is, is pretty much up to us.
Fighting with God is a losing battle because he either will get his way in your life or you will be miserable. I said, he either will get his way in your life or you will be miserable. You know, sometimes I can tell I'm fishin' for something and I'm not 100% for sure what it is. But I just got this strong sensing tonight that God's brought a lot of people that you've been wrestling with some things in your life, avoiding, evading. Maybe God's trying to deal with you about something and you've been blaming it on somebody else. Oops. Come on, maybe God's been trying to get you to walk away from something that's poisoning your life and you just keep hanging on. And maybe you've been trying to get away from something that God wants you just to settle down and stay put.
I'll tell ya what, our world is in such an awful mess, and I wanna tell you what, there is so much compromise, not only in the world, but also in the church. And some of us have gotta make some decisions that we're gonna stand up and be the best we can be to glorify God and not just keep floating downstream with everybody else just so they can like us and approve of us. If I were you, I would make a decision tonight that you're gonna go all out for God if that means that you lose every friend you've got. And you might, I did. But now I got more friends than I know what to do with. See, what you give up for God's sake, he will multiply back to you many, many, many times over. You know, we wanna have a great relationship with God, but we wanna do it respectably. We don't wanna be one of those radical, fanatic, overboard Christians, amen?
Well, I'm not saying we all have to go around acting like lunatics but let me tell ya something, if you're gonna serve God, really serve God, you may do a few things that seem odd to the rest of the people occasionally. Like be happy while you got problems. That is really strange. Not worry about your kids when they seem like that they're just going right down the drain 'cause you got some secret information. Being good to your enemies, what sense does that make? Praying for those that have hurt you, wow, we got a strange deal going on here. Everything's upside down from what it is in the world but I'll tell ya what, it works. I've tried the world and I've tried God and I can tell ya God's better. Come on, it's time to make some decisions. Bought with a price, paid for with a preciousness. Some of you are just like, boy, you're just like right on the edge and you kinda go, 'cause, you know, sometimes when God's asking you to jump off, you don't know what it is you're jumping off into.
Ginger: Oh, Joyce, there is a lot to talk about, in the world, today, a lot going on, and especially, a lot of people disagreeing. So, I would love to talk about, how can we disagree and still love one another? Do it the way that God wants us to.
Joyce Meyer: Well, if you'd love to talk about it, you go ahead and talk about it, and I'll listen.
Ginger: What if I disagree?
Joyce Meyer: Oh, Ginger, you know, the world is a mess, right now. It's just like, there's so many angry people and murmuring and complaining, and it's just pitiful. You know, I heard my husband say this morning, "The earth is definitely groaning, as we wait for the return of Christ".
Ginger: Very true.
Joyce Meyer: In Romans 12, it says, "As far as you're concerned, live at peace with all people". And all we can do is our part. You know, Dave and I learned many years ago, we're so different. Dave and I are so different. We had to learn how to disagree agreeably, how to realize that each person has a right to their own opinion.
Ginger: Which is a really important point.
Joyce Meyer: It is. I mean, every person, you know, I have a right to think what I wanna think unless it's evil or wicked, you know? And you have a right to like or dislike what you want to, and I should never be disrespectful towards somebody because they don't think like I do, or like what I like. You know, and that's a good place to start because so often we think, "How could you like that"?
Ginger: "How can you think that way"?
Joyce Meyer: "How could you possibly think that"? Or you know, you'll see people dressed a certain way and think, "Really? What? What did you think when you put that on"? And the thing is, is so much is just none of our business. We would have so much more peace, if we would mind our own business. And I remember a situation where Dave and i, we had a single man that lived next door to us. And he lived in this big house by himself. And Dave and I didn't even know the guy's name, but we started talking one day about, "Why does he wanna live in a big house like that all by himself? That doesn't even make any sense. There's no telling"... And then, all of a sudden, I realized, here we are, planning this guy's financial future 'cause we're like, Dave said, "Well, maybe he's investing money in the house". I said, "But he could invest it somewhere else," and so, we don't even know this guy and we're deciding how he should spend his money. And that's the way we are. You know, I we think more highly of ourselves than we ought to, and we always think that we're right. And so, something that really helped Dave and I is to get to the point where we'll say, "I think I'm right, but I could be wrong". I could possibly be wrong.
Ginger: Yeah. Now, takes some growth even to be able to say that at times.
Joyce Meyer: Right. And we're not even getting around to saying, "I am wrong".
Ginger: That's a big step.
Joyce Meyer: 'cause that really hurts. But just to say, "I think I'm right, but I could be wrong," because I have you ever had a time where you just, I mean, you were so sure that you were right, and you turned out to be wrong?
Ginger: I have, and I don't like it, yeah.
Joyce Meyer: I don't either.
Ginger: But it happens, and it is an eye-opener.
Joyce Meyer: It happens, and it happens more frequently than I would like for it to. But I think, if you wanna get along with people, you have to really be committed to peace. Jesus said, "My peace I leave with you, not as the world gives do I give unto you, but my own special peace, I give and bequeath unto you". And peace is very, very important. Because all this other stuff: the anger, the unforgiveness, the judgment, the criticism, sticking your nose in other people's business: those are all things that God tells us not to do. So, I have a feeling that if we all followed the word, we could get along a whole lot better.
Ginger: Especially, like you said, if you protected that peace as much as we could.
Joyce Meyer: And peace is very important to me now. I grew up in a house of turmoil, and arguing, and fighting, and anger. And then, I spent the next number of years doing that myself because that was the only way that I knew how to live. And once I really got committed to peace, you know, like, I don't always have to have the last word. You know, sometimes, I just need to, put it plainly, shut up, you know? Because when you're talkin' to somebody, you can tell when a conversation is escalating into a level that's not gonna be good, because people start getting louder and louder. And why not just stop it before, I mean, sometimes I'm like, I mean, I can tell in the very beginning of something now, if Dave disagrees with me, and 99% of the time, I'm not gonna talk him out of his opinion. And so, I've just come, I think, well, I don't always say it, but I'll think, "He has a right to his opinion, and I have a right to mine". And sometimes, just getting out of the room, for a few minutes, helps a lot.
Ginger: For me, there's a competition thing. So, I have to remember, "I don't have to win this". You know, being able to lay that down, sometimes, it's not easy. But it does make a difference, if I can tell myself that, and let it go.
Joyce Meyer: I think we better all get committed to peace. Because really, I mean, like the Bible says, "Don't let the sun go down on your anger. Don't give the enemy a foothold in your life". So, it plainly says there and other places in the Bible, that if we hold on to anger it does open a door for the enemy. And I believe that if you don't have any peace, you don't have any power. You know, we want power with God. We want our lives to be powerful. We want the things that we do to matter. We want our words to be powerful. And we have to keep all this junk out of our lives, and it is our responsibility. I can't say, and in this is the way I used to be, "Well, if you didn't act that way, I could be at peace". Well, I had to start taking responsibility for my own peace. And not expect everybody else to keep me peaceful.
Ginger: Yeah, that's really good. There are so many strong opinions in the world, right now. And people are very passionate, for good reasons, about what they believe. But if you go back to that Romans 12 verse, it has two parts to it. It's you know, "As much as you are able," and it's, "Be at peace with all men". And the one seems impossible, but when you add in the first part, it does exactly what you're saying, about that personal responsibility, and coming to the point where, "I'm doing what I can, and I have to let God take care of some of the rest," is that the best way to explain it?
Joyce Meyer: Yeah, believe that, I mean, I believe this so strongly. If I do what's right, no matter what somebody else is doing, if I do what's right and what God wants me to do, then God will take care of it. One way or the other, God will take care of it. And really, even as far as like, your health, and protecting yourself for the future, slowing down the aging process, all the stress in the world, right now, I mean, a full day of worry, and especially, anger is probably equivalent to 40 hours of hard labor. I mean, it takes a toll on you especially, in your soul. And Jesus said, you know, "All you that labor and are heavy-laden, overburdened", the Amplified Bible says, "Come to me, and [i will give you rest for your souls]". He didn't say, "Your body". You know, you can lay down in the bed and rest your body, you can go on vacation and lay on a beach but if you think about everybody you hate, and everybody that you're mad at, and all the things everybody's doing to you, and worry about all your problems: I mean, you'd be better off to stay at work and hopefully, keep your mind off of that stuff. Because it's all this internal stuff that does us damage. When we talk about loving other people: it's so important. I mean, it's the high call on our life. And God is love. It's not just something he does, it's who he is. And he loves us, and he loves us unconditionally. But love is not a feeling. It's not the kind of Romantic love we feel when we're dating somebody, or married to somebody, or not even the kind of love you feel for your children. Love is a decision about how you're gonna treat people, and a decision about how you're gonna talk about people. So, the Bible says, "Bless your enemies and do not curse them". And if you study that in the original language to bless means, "To speak well of," and to curse means, "To speak evil of". And so...
Ginger: That's very practical, I love that. And it's very clear. Which one are you going to do?
Joyce Meyer: And how hard is it, when somebody's hurt you, or you're mad at them, and somebody else comes along and starts talking about what a great person they are, it is almost impossible, because the first thing you think, "Hmm"...
Ginger: "If you only knew".
Joyce Meyer: Yeah, and sometimes just our body language, and so, then the person'll say, "Why what's wrong? What"? You know, which is why we do it. Ew, the flesh is just, it so loves to gossip and to be the first one to tell something. And so, I am committed to living in peace. And when God first really dealt with me about maintaining peace in my life, I had to start by paying attention to the things that stole my peace.
Ginger: That's good, yeah. Realizing what they are.
Joyce Meyer: Yeah, 'cause I didn't even really realize all the things that got me upset. And so, like, this is just one example: if I have to hurry, I mean, I can hurry a little bit. But if I have to hurry to the point where I feel pressured, almost always, I'm gonna end up losing my peace, probably getting angry at somebody who's not even doing anything, and very definitely saying things that I don't need to say. So, therefore, I can fix that whole problem by just leaving myself ample time to do things and not putting myself in a position where I'm gonna get mad at everybody else now, because my world's not moving fast enough.
Ginger: Right, right, well, those are some great suggestions and I think some very, very practical things because we are going to face opinions that are different than ours, and we are going to have people who are willing to work with us on it because they love us, and others who just are not, and they're not gonna like it, whatever we do, whatever we say. So, we need to be able to handle both those situations. And loving, as a decision, rather than a feeling is huge.
Joyce Meyer: And be very generous in the words, "I'm sorry".
Ginger: That's good, yeah.
Joyce Meyer: Those two words can save so much trouble in the world. "If I hurt your feelings, I'm sorry. I was out of line when I did that, please, forgive me". Let's start taking responsibility instead of blaming everybody else for our unhappiness.
Ginger: Uh, hallelujah. Good talk.
Joyce Meyer: Thanks.
Ginger: Thank you.