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Levi Lusko - In The Absence Of A Crisis

I hope as you think of the great things that God has done in other people's lives, and in the world, and in your life, I hope your request facing the future is God, do twice as much in the coming days. I hope that's what you're praying over your kids. I hope that's what you're praying over your grandkids. I hope you're saying, God, you've done great things before. I hope that you think about our church and all that come before us. I hope you're saying, God, a double portion in the coming days. I want to see you do even more. Thank you so much for joining us for this message on Fresh Life TV, it is such a privilege for us to bring messages from Gods word to you, right where you are.

This message series is called, You In Five Years. Instead of just thinking about the New Years resolution that we can accomplish by the end of the year, which tragically often ends in failure, three, four, five months or even shorter after the year begins, we're dating no, half a decade, that's how long were thinking. What can we accomplish taking smaller bites in 5 years time. What would you want to be living for by 2024? Thats the essence of the You In Five Years Series. Why? Because tragically we over estimate what we can do in the short term but underestimate what we can do in the long term. So lets think bigger, start smaller and see God change our lives. Enjoy this message.

The series we're in is called You in Five Years. And we're just asking the simple question, who will we be five years from now if we continue our present course, and who do we want to be five years from now? Those are the two questions. Where is our right now momentum taking us, and do we like that destination, because now's the time to get off the train if we don't like where it's going? Come on. Who will you be in 2023, and who do you want to be by the time the next half decade is over? And we're giving some thought to that now instead of the usual New Year's resolution. 12 months, that's not enough time to do what we want to do. We're asking, what do I want to accomplish 60 months from now that 12 months, I will be only unfinished? I'll only be partially there? We're picking something bigger. We're going a little bit deeper.

The title of this message, if you like to scribble stuff down while I talk to you, is, In the Absence of a Crisis. In the Absence of a Crisis. In 1 Kings 19, we find 1 of 3 passages we're going to consider together, and it's about the man Elisha, Elisha, who would eventually become a prophet, because Elijah, who was the prophet, he was the mightiest of the miracle working prophets. No big deal. That's what he's been called. Elijah is this fiery figure who alongside Moses, really represents the office of prophet. You have in Elijah, this hard to fill set of shoes. But God told Elijah in advance who was going to replace him. And he said, it's going to be Elisha.

Now, it was a confusing thing for God to do that, because their names sound so similar. You had to go pick him. It couldn't be Billy. No, it had to be Elisha. And Elijah's like, really? So people are going to think I'm him, and he's me, and they'll be all confused forever. And God's like, it's not about you. Get over yourself. He's like, fine. And so what we're going to see is him going to seek out Elisha so he can let him know that he's going to be a part of the team and one day be a prophet. "So he", this is Elijah, "departed from there", verse 19, "and found Elisha", you're probably wondering who his dad is. Oh, luckily, "son of Shaphat", see. I knew you were wondering. Like, I don't feel comfortable studying him if I can't know who his dad is. So the text was like, he's the son Shaphat. And Elisha, when he got found, "was plowing with 12 yoke of oxen before him".

Now, you didn't respond with a gasp. You didn't seem blown away. I don't see any of your hair going back, but you should have, because we just found out he is enormously wealthy, enormously wealthy. You see, an oxen in that day would be the equivalent of like expensive John Deere tractor, or a costly combine, or I don't know. I'm running out of farm equipment. A really souped up F-150 Raptor edition, or whatever. Wow, 12 pairs of these? That means he had 24 of these expensive fancy pieces of farming equipment. And how vast do your landholdings have to be to necessitate 24 of them? To have one would be a big deal in that day, and he's got a lot. And so that means that Shaphat farms was the place to be, Shaphat Farming Incorporated, Shaphat and Son, as it were. And Elisha is obviously the Bruce Wayne of this whole affair, of Shaphat Enterprises. And Elisha's going to be in charge one day, and that's a lot. That's a big deal. It's a huge responsibility, and it's a big calling.

And many of you will be called to be leaders in industry, in business, and be successful, and to produce wealth, not just for yourselves as an end, but as a beginning to bless many people, and do a great deal of good. And whether it's farming, or banking, or being an architect, many of you will have it upon you to be like Shaphat. And some of you, even now, the seeds are going to be sown so that the oak tree can come out of the acorn of these series. Five years from now, you could be in a completely different place when it comes to your vocation, when it comes to your career, when it comes to your work, and the wealth you can produce, and the good that you can do. And you can be the head, and not the tail. How great would it be to own and not rent? How great would it be to be a lender and not the one who's borrowing?

It just could be a completely different paradigm for you. You could be like Shaphat. Come on, get your Shaphat on. Dream for 24 tractors. Someone's like that's my word. I was just thinking 24 tractors is where I want to be in 5 years. "Then Elijah passed by him," the text continues. We're only one verse in, guys. "Passed by him and", look at this, "threw his mantle on him". That's weird, and I need to act it out, because Elijah walked four days from where he met with God seeking out Elisha. Well, you have no idea whether he's ever met the guy before, they know each other. To Elisha, Elijah, larger than life. He's chiseled in stone on Mount Rushmore. He's the man, the mightiest of the miracle working prophets. This guy was so bad, one time he said, it's not going to rain until I say it will. With attitude, even. It's just like, I get it. The prophecy needed to happen. But he said it with sass and with style. I like this guy.

And so Elisha's just plowing, just another day, just plowing, getting his heifer on. And all of sudden, Elijah just appears out of nowhere with a crazy look in his eye, as he often had. And as he approached him, Elijah starts taking off his jacket super slowly, and Elisha's like, that's strange. And Elijah runs up behind him, and throws his jacket over Elisha's shoulders, and walks away. OK. So now Elisha, who's plowing behind his oxen, he's like, thank you. I wasn't cold. But you have to understand it was a symbolic gesture. Essentially, he handed him a lightsaber and said, let's go to the Dagobah system. This was an unpaid internship, let's be clear, that he was offering him, but it was the chance to be under his authority. I'm going to eventually, one day, if you follow me, and learn from me, be my disciple, and be my pupil, you, too, could one day be a part of the Jedi.

That's what he gave him a crack at here. And Elisha knew full well what was being offered to him, and that's why the text says, verse 20, "He left the oxen and ran after Elijah", and he would have, of course, handed his cloak back. He realizes he doesn't get it yet. That was just a ceremony. It was symbolism. And he said, "Please let me kiss my father and mother, and then I will follow you". So he read it. He knew what was happening. Please let me kiss my mom and dad, and then let's do this thing. You realize what he's walking away from, right? He's walking away from Shaphat Enterprises. He's walking away from Wayne Manor. This is kissing the life he knew, the life he loved, the future that was before him goodbye to follow Elijah, whose life was impressive, I'll give you that, but it was treacherous, as almost all lives that are greatly used by God can be.

Elijah, yeah, he called down fire from heaven, and we love to think about that. But let's not forget between, it's not going to rain until I say it will and calling fire down from heaven, there were years lived in hardship, where at one point, he was hanging out by a brook (true story) Bear Gryllsing it, and he was fed by ravens. Is that like a fancy new food delivery service, like Postmates or UberEATS, or Blue Apron? No it was just ravens. It was just raven delivery service, twice a day, they showed up and brought food to him. I'm sure the first day, he was like, what in the world? Does that bird have a Capri Sun? What on earth? But eventually, I bet he got cocky. The birds are bringing him a Ding Dong, or whatever. I bet the bird's dropping it from 30, 40 feet in the air. Hey. See you in five, Bill. And the bird's name was Bill. And he probably was resorting to naming the bird. That was his only source of companionship. It was his Wilson.

You know what I'm saying? I mean, it was just absolutely crazy. And then he goes from there probably go to a hotel. Actually, no. God said, I want you to go stay with a widow in Zarephath, which was in the territory of the people who he had offended and the god that he had insulted. There in Zarephath, Baal was worshipped. I'm going to go live Zarephath with a widow. When he meets, her she's so emaciated, she looks like she's about to starve to death. And she, in fact, tells him, I'm actually planning on dying later. I'm going to eat one last meal, and it's over. He's like, awesome. First, make me some pancakes. And he ends up staying with her through the entire famine.

Now, Elisha knows full well that that's what he's embracing, a life where God's going to use him dramatically, but hardship, and difficulty, and opposition, and absolutely just not knowing from day to day what is even going to happen. And that's what he just accepted here on the spot. Elijah responds and says, "Go back again, for what have I done to you"? In other words, yeah, kiss her, but just make sure you think twice on what you're doing here before you cut once. Make sure you count the cost before you deny yourself, pick up your cross, and choose to follow me in the language of the New Testament to us. Make sure you understand what you're getting into here. Make sure you understand that you're embracing sacrifice, you're embracing a life where you're not in control once you choose to follow Jesus Christ as your Lord. Make sure you understand that full-well.

You see, because a lot of people don't do that, and they think, I'm basically just getting a genie in a lamp in God. And they embrace Him saying, yeah, use me, use me, only to turn their back three months later when they feel used. And it's like, what's the matter? You got an answer to your own prayer, and that's what is happening here. Make sure you understand what's happening. Verse 21, "Elisha turned back from him", and obviously he kissed his mom. You always got to kiss your momma, "and then he took a yoke of oxen and slaughtered them, and boiled their flesh using the oxen's equipment, and gave it to the people, and they ate. Then he arose, and he chose to follow Elijah, and he became his servant".

In answer to Elijah's question, do you really mean it? Do you understand what's really happening here? He turned around, and killed these animals, and made a bonfire, and ate what he once just a moment before was driving on that represented his life. Pretty strong. So he follows Elijah. What does he do? Well, the text told us he became his servant. He became his servant. Get this. 18 years passes. 18 long years go by, long enough to be born and graduate high school. And we get 1 detail, 1 detail of that 18-year-long period where he is Elijah's servant. You ready for it? Yeah. "He poured water on the hands of Elijah. Waiting for the next verse? No, that's it. That's it. That's all we get for 18 years as Elijah's servant. "He poured water on the hands of Elijah". His function was that of the one who provided the hand sanitizer.

After the meet and greet, where Elijah shook all the hands, he would come over and Elisha would... That was his life, 18 years. 18 years, Purex. 18 years, seems Elijah it was a bit of a germaphobe, right? And so he would just come over. Elisha would, all right. And back to the fanny pack, it went. It was zipped up, and on they went to the next assignment. That was his only job that we know of, 18 years of his, he could have been somebody. He was somebody. How many times during those 18 years did he think back to how life was on Shaphat Farms and cringe at the notion that he felt 18 years of obscurity, 18 years as a servant, 18 years, and all he did was we hear of him pouring water. We don't hear of a sermon. There's no miracle. He just merely was in a role in the background supporting the ministry that made what Elijah did possible. That's the second movement to the story.

Finally, the details start to flow a little bit as Elijah's life was nearing its conclusion. You see, God told Elijah in advance, you're about to go to heaven. You're about to be done here on this Earth. And he let Elisha know, it's about to end. It's all coming to a conclusion here, and they began walking to a solitary place where he was going to go to heaven. And they had to cross a river first, As they were traveling, they came to a body of water, and Elijah stopped at the river's edge. Elisha, probably 18 years in, knew better than to ask any questions. He just assumed, if Elijah stopped, there was a good reason to it. Early on, probably, in the 18 years, he probably would have been like, here's my suggestion. We ford the river. We do this. We could climb over a tall tree and then jump from the other, and I'm sure that as time went on, the more he just learned to just speak when spoken to, when he was asked a good question, come up with the best answer he could, ask a lot of questions, but not run his mouth a lot.

And I'm sure that that wisdom paid off as when they arrived at the edge of the river, Elijah looked at it, took his jacket off, the mantle that he had put on Elisha, and smacked the edge of the river with this jacket. This is just the Bible. I'm just reading scripture to you guys. You're looking at me cross-eyed and religious. I'm just telling you, this is the Bible. You're like, the Bible's so boring. Have you ever read this thing? He hits the river with his jacket, and the jacket divides in half. That is precisely what happens. And then it says in 2 kings chapter 2 verse 9, for the third movement of the story, "And so it was when they had crossed over that Elijah said to Elisha, 'Ask, what may I do for you before I am taken away from you?'" That's nice. Hey, you've been a good servant these 18 years. Anything I can do for you before I die? And "Elisha said, 'Please let a double portion of your spirit be upon me.'"

I love that request. I love that request, and I hope that's what's in your spirit. I hope as you think of the great things that God has done in other people's lives, and in the world, and in your life, I hope your request facing the future is God, do twice as much in the coming days. I hope that's what you're praying over your kids. I hope that's what you're praying over your grandkids. I hope you're saying, God, you've done great things before. I hope that you think about our church and all that come before us. I hope you're saying, God, a double portion in the coming days. I want to see you do even more. And far from being offended by that, that's God's heart all along, He's like, finally, there's some faith there. He wants to do exceedingly and abundantly more than you could ever ask, or think, or imagine. The problem with praying small prayers is that you might just get what you asked for instead of what God wanted you to have all along. That's good.

So Elijah considers what Elisha asked for. I mean, he is the mightiest of the miracle working prophets. We know in his entire life that are recorded, he performed 14 different miracles. And what Elisha's asking for, Elijah's like, OK. Look at his response. He says, "You've asked a hard thing". 14 times 2. We have to carry the one. 28 miracles. You asked a hard thing. OK, here you go. "Nevertheless, if you see me when I am taken from you, it shall be so for you. But if not, it shall not be so". Nothing's ever simple with this guy, is it? No. He's just being mystic to be weird, I think, at this point, playing with him. In a minute, I'm going to heaven. And if you see when it happens, you know from that moment, Elisha doesn't blink one single time, right?

The guy's Wile E. Coyote. He's not vanishing into the bushes and dying on my watch. He was thinking that he might be blinking while Elijah expires. But God had something much weirder in store for Elijah than dying like an ordinary person. Oh, no. There would be no dying for him. Because as the text continues, it says, "Then it happened as they continued on and talked that suddenly a chariot of fire appeared with horses of fire", as it does, "and separated the two of them. And Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven". Of course he did. Of course he did. That's how one goes to heaven. No, I have an official request that's how I get to heaven, too. God hasn't answered definitively. I'm just like, you know what? You could die in your sleep. I want to go on a fiery chariot in a whirlwind.

So there was approximately, we know Elijah was just messing with them, because how could one miss that? You can't really miss something like that. Something with a whirlwind, and bunch of horses, and the chariot, and the fact that the chariots and horses are on fire. In fuego to cielo. So this is a dramatically interesting day that you can't even make this stuff up. If you were like, the Bible's made up, the Bible's way too weird to be made up. Nobody would make up stuff this dramatic. "And Elisha saw it, and he cried out, 'My father, my father, the chariot of Israel and its horsemen!' So he saw him no more. And he took hold of his own clothes and tore them into two pieces". Why? Out of respect, out of grief, to show honor that he loved Elijah, and would miss him until his own day came to go to heaven, probably not as spectacularly. "He also took up the mantle of Elijah that had fallen from him".

I need you to imagine this. He's watching the whirlwind go by, and the horses shoot off into the sky. This is Air Horse One Things I do for you. OK. And all of a sudden, out of the whirlwind comes, what? Elijah's of a sudden, out of the whirlwind comes, what? Elijah's jacket. 18 years a slave. 18 years and then, woo. 18 years. Woo. No, I'm joking. He didn't sing that song. He was sad. But, look at this. This is really funny to me. "He took up the mantle that had fallen from him, and he went back and stood by the bank of the Jordan". He hit it with the mantle. Look at what happened. "He took it up, he struck the water, and said, 'Where is the Lord God of Elijah?' And when he had struck the water, it was divided this way and that, and Elisha, the prophet, crossed over".

Come on, somebody. There's so much in this. All right, so listen to me. This story has three movements. And I believe this story has much to speak to our lives as we seek to get to where we want to be in the next five years. What do you mean? Well, I called this message In the Absence of Crisis, in the absence of a crisis. Why? Because a crisis is an event that if you think about it, proves we are all capable of change. I could never change. I could never do that. Well, if you had to, you'll find a way. Why do moms pick up cars? They had to. They had to. Their baby, they had to. If you had do, what could you do? I can't say. Every time I try, what if you had to come up with a ransom?

I'm reading this book by an FBI negotiator. He's talking about the different situations where families came up with money. Why? They had to. What could you do if you had to do it? I could never fast. I'm so hungry. I had a pastor one time, I said, have you guys ever fasted as a church? I'm just trying to figure out how we as a church are going to do it. He goes, I don't really like, no, we don't really do that our church. I said, why not? He goes, I get hungry. I said, that's the point, I think, as far as I can tell. I'm not an expert. I didn't go to seminary like you did, but I think that's the idea. And he goes, I'm just not good at it. I said, no one's good at it. Gandhi, only. Other than Gandhi, all of us get hungry, and that's the idea. I'm not really good at it. If you had to, if your car broke down in the woods, and you were stranded for weeks, people deal with, they do things. When you have to, you're capable of change. But how do we change in the absence of a crisis?

Come on. I think we have to come to a place where we can generate an internal crisis even when we don't have the luxury of an external one. Tony Robbins put it this way. He said, "Change happens when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change". Wow. Change hurts, and so that's why we don't like it, because fasting's hard, and so is savings, and so is picking up a car, picking up anything heavy. And we could do it if there was a crisis, but how do we generate the crisis? Because I don't think that staging external crises is the way to go, right? I get someone to hurt my child at unplanned intervals, and I quickly pick something up. That's my weight lifting regiment. That is not realistic moving forward. But if you can generate an internal crisis because you think about the pain of staying where you are as opposed to whatever pain it's going to be that it's going to take to get to where you want to go, and I see in this text and these passages three different movements that will help us.

First, it's going to take drastic action, drastic action to get to where we want to be, drastic action. Is Elisha not demonstrating drastic action when he chooses to light on fire the yoke and eat with his friends, his f-150? That's drastic. That's full-on, that's ripped from Cortez's playbook, even though it was not until 1519 that Cortez made his men stand on the shores and watched the ships that were on fire that had brought them there. We got to do like Cortez a bit. Not the raping, and the plundering, and the pillaging, please. It was barbaric and unspeakable what they did. But in the resolve, in the determination, in the choice to say, we will die or we will succeed, but there will be no retreat. Are you drastic in the action you're taking, or are you soft, and are you pleasant with your desire to change tomorrow, and what you're surely going to get around to next month?

That drastic action is called for, and I wonder if you're willing to do so. It's necessary why? Why is a drastic action so necessary at the beginning? It's that first domino, if you heard last week's message, that knocks over eventually the Empire State Building of change in your life. But it's the knocking over of a first domino. It's drastic to knock something over. Everything's sitting up. Something's got to give. Something's got to light the fuse. It's going to take a spark to get that fire going. And without that spark, you can pile up all the kindling you want. It's not going to happen until that first spark of decision, and that line is crossed over. It's hard by design, but necessary to overcome inertia. Inertia, it's really impacted us. We got to go to our boy from the 1600s and 1700s, Isaac Newton, Sir Isaac Newton, who I want to listen to him just when I see this painting of him. Just speak into my life, Sir Isaac Newton. Look, the jaw, the chin, the hair. It's fabulous.

So Sir Isaac Newton, of course, famous for discovering the rules behind gravity and all of that, he has this theory he postulated that is looked to now and described now as the laws of motion. And the first law of motion, or what is described as inertia, is stated as follows. "Objects will remain at rest or in uniform motion in a straight line unless compelled to change its state by the action of an external force". Drastic action. The point is everything in the universe wants to keep doing whatever it's doing. It doesn't want to change. Everything is resistant to a change of state. We call that inertia. And the word inertia itself comes from the Latin word "lazy". Can you believe that? Or "idle". Everything in the universe, every object, everything, the first law of motion states, is lazy.

That makes so much sense. Our default thing is to stay where we are. Our default thing is not to move, it's not to change, because the first law of motion states that everything's lazy, everything's idle. This brick is so lazy. That brick is so idle. Look at it. That brick does not want to change. It doesn't want to move. It doesn't want to go anywhere. Hey, brick, do you have any plans today? No. I'm going to sit here. And if everything stayed the same, if there was no drastic action taken, guess what? A thousand years from now, this brick would still be sitting here. If the table was removed suddenly, gravity would cause it to move. But other than that, that brick is not going anywhere because it is lazy. It wants to stay as it is. Now, I have a hammer, and the hammer can bring force to it. And with drastic action, I can move the brick.

Now, I can't move very much. Why? Because that brick has a great amount of mass. This balloon, on the other hand, does not have a lot of mass, and so it can be easily moved with much less force. In fact, even the wind and static electricity can cause that balloon to move some. Look at that. But if I hit it with an external force, it can move a lot. I can move this balloon a lot because almost all the force goes to it because more mass means more inertia. More mass means more inertia. This brick, so much of the force going into it is spent on overcoming inertia that not very much of it gets transferred through it. And that's why I can break the brick on my hand and have it not hurt at all, because the great amount of force went into disrupting the inertia, and very little goes through it. You're still not getting it.

You need a bigger example. Fortunately, I have access to toys, and one of them is an eight pound sledge hammer. I need my lab assistants for this, though, because we start to bring danger in, and safety first, everybody. So the brick gets bigger, the hammer gets bigger, the stakes get bigger. As your life goes on, the harder it becomes to change. The longer you've been entrenched in your laziness, the easier it is to stay lazy and idle. Oh, yes, thank you. Missed it, missed it, missed it, missed it. Totally, totally blew the landing on that one. Where's that? Found it. That's very nice. Thank you. Appreciate that.

All right. So this brick, I'm going to have John Mark smash it off my chest with this sledgehammer and prove to you that so much of the inertia of being overcome absorbs a great deal of the energy. And when it breaks, the flying pieces going that way is going to take a lot of the kinetic energy as well, and almost none of it's going to get transferred to me. I can totally safely have him do this. But I also want to demonstrate something to you called pressure. Pressure is force applied over an area. And it's an amazing thing we learn from physics as well. If we take this bed of nails that we made here, and we have me lie down on it, I can do so because of physics. When I lie down on this, oh, wait. Why don't I just lie down on this one? Because that would be a terrible plan. Because of pressure, force over an area.

All of me on this, it's 161 pounds, I'm working on it, guys. I'm on a journey, on this 1 nail, it will go through me. But when we have a couple hundred of these nails, guess what? I can lie down on a bed of nails. And when I do so, there's no pain. It's more comfortable than a Tempur-Pedic mattress because my whole body is spread out over this area. Now, we have another bed of nails upside down that we can place on top of me. And when we do, I again, don't feel anything. Why? I've already had my children, John Mark. We're fine. We're fine. So here's the deal. When we put this brick down, listen. I'm totally fine because of physics.

Now, watch. John Mark is going to smash this brick. But all of the sledgehammer has force that's going to go into it, and it's going to be used to dispel the inertia of this brick that doesn't want to go through my body. It wants to stay where it is. So most of the energy disrupts the inertia. The rest of it gets blown out through the flying debris. This Plexiglas shield held by my daughter keeps me from having my face broken by little bits of flying rock. On my count, unleash hell. Three, two, one. I'm not dead, so it must have worked. Let's hear it. two, one. I'm not dead, so it must have worked. Let's hear it. And that's why it's so difficult to change your life. Come on. Because all the normal energy you apply to change gets spent just overcoming inertia, and you're not able to use any of it to build up speed.

Let's hear it for our lab assistants who did a tremendous job. And that's why baptism's so important, fully wet. It's a drastic thing to say to the whole world, I'm soaking wet and saved. It's drastic action. I remember the day of my baptism. It's hard to forget. I was wet from head to toe, and fist bumping God. It was a great day, drastic action. That's why fasting is so drastic. I'm going to not eat for a while. Why? I want to hear from heaven. I'm telling you it's drastic action. It's drastic to grab the food that you don't want to eat, and throw it in the trash, and step on it for good measure.

I'm telling you it's drastic to delete some numbers from your phone because they're dysfunctional. It's drastic to break up with someone who's no good for you, and God's god something better for you, and God Himself is your reward. And when you find what you need in Him, then you can be brought into a relationship. It's drastic to say, here's a line. No more. The time for half measures is over. Otherwise, five years from now you're an older version of who you are right now, but exaggerated. Drastic action. There's a second thing. I see in Elisha's story steady progression. A steady progression, slow and steady, slow and steady, 18 years. What was he doing? Pouring water. 18 years, pouring water. 18 year, pouring water, steady. Drastic action tips over our first domino. But then what do we need? Just consistent, just consistent, just consistent. It doesn't look like much has happened. Just consistent, pouring water, pouring water, pouring water.

Epictetus the Greek philosopher put it this way. "No great thing is created suddenly, any more than a bunch of grapes or a fig. If you tell me that you desire a fig, I answer you, there must be time. Let it first blossom, then bear fruit, then ripen". You see, whatever change you want that's dramatic and sudden and instant, if it's instantly visible, it's likely not long term sustainable. Right. You want things to go into the ground and compound interest to take hold. You want the processes that God put in of slow and steady to win that race, because God always works in sowing and reaping in seasons, and summer and winter, and that we are found a year from now doing the thing that we were meant to do, and thinking of what could happen in 60 months, and what could happen even in 60 years.

To modernize it a little bit and go from Epictetus to a current philosopher, Darren Hardy in the book The Compound Effect put it this way. He said, "It's time someone told it to you straight. You've been bamboozled for too long. There is no magic bullet, secret formula, or quick fix. You don't make $200 grand a year spending 2 hours a day on the internet, lose 30 pounds in a week, rub 20 years off your face with a cream, fix your love life with a pill, or find lasting success with any other scheme that is too good to be true. It'd be great if you could buy your success, fame, self-esteem, good relationships, and health and well-being in a nicely clamshelled package at the local Walmart, but that's not how it works".

Come on. What is it going to take day in and day out, day in and day out? Keeps sowing. Keep watering. Keep dreaming. Keep planted. Keep planted. Small groups, life decisions, Bible, Jesus, prayer, save, save, work out, the right choices, right choices, right people, day in, day out, planted in the house of God, flourishing in the courts of our Lord. It takes the right things over time to get to where we want to be. John Maxwell put it this way. He said, "Improvement doesn't happen in a day, but it must be daily". It's not going to happen in a day. You cannot be changed by tomorrow, but it has to happen daily if we're to get to where we want to be.

There's a third movement. And the third movement is when there has been drastic action followed by a steady progression, you can then enjoy momentum. Enjoy momentum. Isn't it interesting the way that Elisha eventually comes to a place where slow and steady he's been filling up his life with these small decisions, and then eventually comes to this dramatic place of momentum? Momentum, I love it so much. By the way, when you think about what happens when you've just got not just one nail of a drastic action, but you have nail after nail after nail after nail just how different things become, if you just take the one thing, any one thing, there's a weakness to it. But if you take the thing of what you're trying to do, and you multiply it out hundreds and thousands of times over and over again, you get to a place where everything spread out, and look what can happen in your life.

And by the way, that's why you should be in a small group. If you're not in a Fresh Life Group, if you don't people in your life loving you, helping you, encouraging you to spread the weight of your life around, to hold you up when you're weak, you need to be on a team. You need to be in community if you're to thrive. But here's the cool thing. All of this leads to momentum. Why? Because inertia is a double edged sword, isn't it? Newton said things that are at rest stay at rest. What was that second part? But objects in motion stay in motion, and do so in a straight line. So course correction and steering followed by compounded decision-making eventually leads you to a pretty spectacular thing, and that's called inertia once more.

You see, the space shuttle uses more fuel in taking off than it does in the rest of the flight put together, because it's just got of break free from what's holding it to being an object at rest, but then eventually it becomes an object in motion. And without friction or any of the things that cause us to be unable to slide something forever, in the vacuum of space, if I were to throw that same brick, it would never stop until it hits another star, or hits a comet. It would just keep going forever. Why? Because an object at rest turned into an object in motion that will remain in motion.

I love the demonstration that I saw on The Ellen Show of inertia in motion, where she took a tray, she was instructed by Steve Spangler to take this tray and to set it on top of three glasses. But first, to fill each of the glasses with... what Elisha's job? Pouring water. Oh, that's interesting. Magic happens when you pour water over and over again. You didn't respond. That was pretty cool. Whatever, it's fine. No, it's great, guys. The cool thing about the demonstration is that it involves toilet paper rolls, which is always nice to get it find a second life for these little guys before they're tossed out.

I mean, normally you're so disappointed to see them. Oh, my gosh. And sometimes you're terrified to see them. But on this day, we're glorified as we see them, right? It's pretty cool. And you think about what they can actually provide, and that is support for these oranges. And this is a force being applied below them, and it's holding them up in the air. And of course, objects at rest, they're going to stay at rest. They're not going to go anywhere on their own. They want to stay there. Those oranges want to stay there. But if I apply a force to them on this side, then here's what's going to happen. I'm going to take away their support. I'm going to take away the pedestals, and these oranges should not follow the tray. They should not follow the tubes that they're on.

But if Newton is right, then they should fall straight in line, because objects in motion stay in motion, and they do so in a straight line. And this is what's possible for you as you make the right decisions. Eventually, you come to a place where the right things have been set in place and just continue. And it's hard to get off the ground, and you've got to keep going. Here's the overview, different outline that I was thinking of. And I want to tell you that yeah, it's difficult to do drastic action, unbearable. And the steady progression, uncomfortable. But once you get to this phase where you're enjoying momentum, you become unstoppable in Jesus' name.
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