Levi Lusko - Liquid Courage
Thank you for being here. Happy Memorial Day with gratitude for those who have laid their lives down in the history of our country. And I hope you have an amazing Memorial Day weekend. Or, if you skipped church to be camping or something and you're watching this or listening to this down the road, we're glad you're here as well. Thank you for listening to us, giving us some time. Really glad. Hope you have an amazing Memorial Day. We are in a season that we've called the River Wild. The River Wild. We're getting in that raft with Meryl Streep, and we're kicking Kevin Bacon to the curb, and we are discovering the power of the gauntlet. We're discovering how the surging, racing floodwaters of a river in the midst of rapid season is like the Grand adventure of following Jesus. And we're in John, chapter 7, this week, as we come to the last message in the series. With the actual text that originally inspired this series. Though we saved it for the end, it was the passage of scripture that got originally, just grabbed me with, and had me just focus us on rivers all this spring. It's been amazing, hasn't it?
We do invite you back next week. I'm going to be kicking off a three part message series. It's we're going to be one message broken down into three weeks that I'm calling the Secret to a Good Life. The Secret to a Good Life. I hope you'll come back. I hope you'll tune in because this is going to be good and I can't wait to preach it next week. Or over the next three weeks actually. And, in the midst of that, will be rock to city, and the climactic end of it will be Father's Day. We're going to honor the fathers at the Fresh Life house. It's going to be a word for all of us. But the secret to a good life starts next week. We hope you'll join us.
John chapter 7, we're jumping in, and verse 37. I have preached this passage, I can't even recall, maybe six times in my life. But God has shown me so many new things, I feel like I had never read it before when I began studying it this most recent time. It says in verse 37, "On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out saying, 'If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.' But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified".
I have always prided myself on being the kind of person who has a pocket knife on him at the appropriate moment that one is needed. I just like that. In my mind, see myself as the kind of person in a situation where, even if it's not super needed it's not drastically needed, it's not a child's toy that you need a chainsaw to get out. What is it with these toys these days, the packaging these days? But even if it's just like a slightly necessary situation like, Oh there's this package. And someone's like Oh and I'm like oh. In my mind, I see myself as the person in a situation who has a pocket knife and is ready to serve. Ready to do , I see myself that way in my mind, so I love, I hate nothing more than being in a situation and I reach and I don't have a knife on me, don't have a tool on me. And I just feel so helpless. I feel so useless. And it's pretty much, you want to guarantee you won't need a pocket knife, put a pocket knife in your pocket that day.
But the day that you don't have one with you, there's going to come a need, and you're going to just look for it and feel for, it's not there. But there does come some downsides, right? Especially if you travel through airports ever. I have. Anybody ever try to get a knife on an airplane? Yeah, that's a terrible feeling. One time I had this Leatherman in my pocket at the airport. And I've realized it's there just before I go in, which is lucky because once you go in, you're not getting that sucker back. You know what I'm saying? And so I realized I can't mail it to myself. I don't have anyway to go check it into a bag and so I thought I need this knife to have a good home. You know I got into adoption real quick on that moment. And so I left security and I go on and I got to find the right owner and I see this guy who's waiting at the exit towards baggage claim, presumably to pick up a family member who had been on a journey.
And I studied everybody there for a while before figuring who was the worthy parent for my pocketknife. And I see this guy, he looked like he worked with his hands. You could tell he had calluses. If I had to guess, I would say from Mexico or South America where his families descended from. And so I approached him. I said, hey man. And he immediately said he didn't speak English. And I said OK, that's OK. I just want to give you something. And so I tried, through body language, to say I got to fly, but I had this knife. And I don't know what I was getting across, but it ended with me with both hands taking this pocket knife out and saying, will you take this knife and love it all it's days? Will you honor it? Will you cherish it? Forsaking all of the knives you may have owned? Will you live only under this knife as long as you both shall live? And I think he eventually, sort of, connected what I was asking of him and/or he just wanted me to go my merry little way. And so he said gracias. He said thank you. And I walked off and I watched him with great satisfaction put the knife into his pocket.
And I just imagined like four generations from now this knife being handed down. And it being like lore in his household. The day the gringo in the aeropuerto gave me this knife. And this is now a part of storied generations within his lineage and dynasty, or at least that's how I imagine it. But what I love about this particular knife is that it has a bottle opener on it. That's one of the funniest things. I love explaining this. Lennox loves to say, dad tell me all about your knife. And I'll tell him all the different things. It's amazing having a three-year-old around because he's so easily impressed. I want him to stay as easily impressed as he is right now because this literally, Last time he asked me about it he said, tell me about this. I said it's got a screwdriver. It has scissors, I go, it has scissors too. He goes, and a sharp thing too? I said a sharp thing, a screwdriver. He goes dad, that is a lot of tools. I was like, I know. I know. I know, son. I am very happy with how impressed you are. I do love the ability that it has, when needed, just to be like, hey you know what? You need that bottle opened?
Well, guess what? I am here to serve. Are you thirsty? Well here. Delightful. And it does occasionally backfire, though. Because, this of course, being a pry off bottle cap, or crown as they originally were called. I remember one time I was with a gal who had a soda that looked just like it. And she had freshly manicured nails. And so, as she went to do it, I was like, oh, let me do that for you. So I grabbed my knife out and she goes no no you , And I go, no no. I got this. I do this all the time. And I am just, She goes no I don't need it. I'm like yes, I will. And I'm going for forever. And then, she finally says, that's actually a twist off cap. I was like, oh. Solid point. So it wasn't my finest hour. I will completely admit that to you today. But that is exactly, if you can believe it or not, what is happening here that has caused Jesus to stand up and cry out. I don't know if you noticed it, but it says here, at this feast, and we'll explain what's going on, that Jesus stood up and cried out. Like the gal with the manicured fingers, he was like no, you don't understand. There's an easier way. You're struggling here with this tool. You think that is so powerful. But all you need is your hands. Everything you need to get it off is right there in front of you. The text says, on the last day, the greatest day, the feast.
Now, when you read the Old Testament, one thing becomes abundantly clear. God likes to throw a party. It's amazing. My dad likes to say that, in the whole Old Testament, there's only one mandatory fast, but there are mandatory feasts every page turn you basically turn. If you want know whether God's a killjoy or somebody who's a great joy to be around, you immediately just look to God's schedule and you see party, party, party, party, party, party, party. Oh, here this day to be fasting and to have a heart that's more turned in of considering sadness and being more circumspect. But the rest of it, he is just constantly hiring a caterer, getting the disco ball out. He's got a special case that it goes. Because it comes out and goes back in so often, he's like well, that's where the disco ball stays. There's parties everywhere.
There were three great feasts, Passover, and Pentecost, and you have, of course, this that we're talking about here, the Feast of Tabernacles. The Feast of Tabernacles. And on the Feast of Tabernacles, basically everybody sort of camped out. And, on this day, they would build these little tents in their yards, or wherever they could find open space, and it was, again, one of the three feasts that you would travel to Jerusalem for, if you lived in some other part of Israel. And it was a very exciting time and there were special songs. God even gave them the road mix, road trip playlist mix. You know what I'm saying. Like this is the music we listen to whenever we're traveling to Jerusalem. It's kind of like those songs that you don't enjoy but you'll enjoy them on a road trip. You know what I'm saying? Like it's just, we have the lowest standards for music when we're on a 19 hour drive. It's like anything to give ourselves, I love the Beach Boys all of a sudden.
Well I love a Beach Boy playlist on a road trip. I'll tell you what. You got to do what you can do and what you will do in order to survive, right? And so God gave them these Psalms of ascent. There were songs they were always singing to themselves to pass the time with their families as they were traveling up to Jerusalem. Always up to Jerusalem. And so they would travel, and they would sing, and they would talk. And then they would get there and they would assemble the materials needed to build these tents. You would camp out. You wouldn't live in your regular house. You live in this booth. And so the nickname for this festival, the Feast of Tabernacles, became the Feast of Booths because you would live in this tent. It was technically a seven day holiday, but God gave them eight days to observe it, which tells you something about how smart God is. How many of you all know you need a day vacation to catch up from your vacation? Anybody with me?
It is so smart not to schedule your trip ending and then the next day you're going to be back at work. How about a day to clean the camping gear off? How about a day just to orient yourselves with life? Right? So God said it's a seven day feast, but I want you to take eight days every time you do it because that eighth days is going to be tearing down the booths, to putting stuff away, to sort of reacclimating your heart to what is needed to get ready before you jump right back into your day to day life. And the high point of the feast was, of course, the remembering of the water. The feast was all about water because, during the wilderness, wandering during the time when they lived in the desert, their forefathers, before they got to come into the promised land, they had to wander around. We preached about it in the series. They had to wander around in the wilderness. It wasn't originally supposed to be that way. But, because of their hard-heartedness, they were going to stay in the wilderness until the entire generation fell away and only their children, who they accused God of not caring about, were going to get in. And during that time, they would have died because, in a desert, y'all, you die if you don't have water.
Water. And God miraculously, supernaturally, providentially supplied their need with water, get this, that came out of rock. A river opened up. Got God opened up a river that poured out of a boulder. And this feast, of course, it was all about the wanderings. It was all about God taking care of them, leading them by fire at night, and cloud by day. But, at the center of it was you met our greatest need and you still will, we believe. Water. It's really cool how they did it. They're all camped out, right? And then they would all assemble. And the population of Jerusalem was up to 2 million people during the Feast of Tabernacles. It's a lot of people everywhere. And they would all sort of try and get down to the temple, or where they could see the temple or get a vantage point of the temple. And what would happen is the high priest had this golden pail, a golden bucket, and he would fill it up with water from the Pool of Siloam. And then he would travel with that golden pail all the way to the temple.
And as they traveled, they would recite saw Isaiah 12, verse 3 which says, therefore with joy you will draw water, water that comes from the wells of salvation. They would quote from the Psalms which read, save now Lord. Save us now. Psalm 118, verse 25, Oh Lord, I pray you would now send us all your prosperity. And there was this big ritual of the golden pail of water traveling to the temple where it would be poured out as they would remember. That would happen for six days, but on the seventh day, that great day of the feast, which tells you how popular this holiday was. They didn't even call it a feast. They called it the feast. This is the People's Choice. OK. This is the one they love this. This is in elf parlance the show. All the other the elf jobs not the deal. Christmas is the show. That's what this feast was to the people. And, as they would on this day show up, the priest would have two golden pails and it would be twice as much water they would gather.
And then when they got to the temple he wouldn't just pour it out. He first would do what's called a Jericho lap. And a Jericho lap, of course, is seven laps. And this spoke, of course, the fact that once they got into the promised land God continued to provide for them by tearing down the biggest barrier to their being inside the promised land that was the city of Jericho. And then as that water would all be poured out that was like the ultimate moment. Everyone would cheer. That was the kickoff of the great party. Everybody was just losing their mind. And, at that moment, on that day, the great day. Jay Vernon McGee says as Jesus spoke these words, it would have been as though water was splashing up to his ankles. Jesus stood up, which was not how leaders, religious leaders, in that day spoke. They always sat and everybody else stood. But Jesus, who was sitting, stood up and cried out. Something made him raise his voice.
What was he saying? He was saying it's a twist off, not something you got to pry off. Because he realized, in that moment, these people were looking to something to meet a need that couldn't help but disappoint them. They were looking to religion to hydrate them. They were looking to ritual to hydrate them. They were looking to their identity as Jewish people to hydrate them. They were looking to this priest to hydrate them. They were hoping in the past and what their forefathers relationship with God looked like. He realized they were missing it and so he cried out, if anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. And, if you do, rivers of living water will come pouring from your innermost being, gushing out into the world. You're hoping that this religious experience will meet a thirst inside of you. And that's not the only thing we look to.
There's so many different things that we hope will satisfy us. Every single one of us has many things in this world that we've identified. If I could do that, have that, be that, know him, sleep with her. If I could just, we think that's what's going to satisfy. But Jesus knew that they would, the moment they put these booths away into storage, they would still be empty. Still be the deficient. It made them feel good for a moment. They got a buzz from this experience, for a moment. But he knew it wasn't enough. It's the same thing he told a woman who had been married and divorced five times because she was so convinced that the next guy was the guy who was going to complete her and meet the deficiency that she felt was inside of her. And that's why he told her and John 4:14, whoever drinks the water that I give him will never thirst. But indeed the water I gave him will become, what?
A spring of water welling up to eternal life. He's saying, honey you think this guy's going to meet your need. This guy is going to make you not thirsty anymore. But the only thing you're going to find is more thirst. You're going to get thirsty again. And that's how all water in this world is and Jesus here is saying religion too. Religion too. Church can't meet your need. These things can't satisfy you. Ritual can't satisfy you. Owning a Bible can't. Seeing yourself as the kind of person who loves God can't define you. Only a relationship with me. Jesus said, come to me and drink. Come to me and I will quench your thirst. And here's the beautiful thing. He said, if you do that, something's going to flow out from you. Not only are you not going to be thirsty again, but you're going to find that the drink that you receive leads to a river that flows out of you. The drink that becomes a river. He's saying if you take my life into you, something dynamic and powerful is going to flow out of you. A drink comes in, a river comes out. That has always been God's promise. That has always been what God has offered to people who will look to Him and have faith to receive it from Him.
It's in Isaiah 58:11, the Lord will guide you always. He will satisfy your needs in a sun scorched land. He will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail. Zechariah adds that this flowing of water will be able to happen both in the summer and the winter. He's saying it won't be contingent upon whether it's a dry season or a rainy season because this water is supernatural. It's from Heaven. He's saying you can flourish and thrive even in the midst of difficulties in life. He's saying there's a river wildlife life that God has for you, intends for your relationship with him to be like. Not just church as usual, just business as usual Oh just another weekend, working for it, looking forward to it, but disappointed by it ultimately. He's saying your life walking with Him can be this grand adventure. Like a pulsating river, like a pounding current, like the way your heart races when you hear it thundering, like the idea of a waterfall.
I'm telling you it can be lush, it can be tropical, it can be dynamic, your life with Jesus. Following Him, walking with Him, it can be like a raging river. It taps into something inside of you. A river is so visceral. It's peaceful when you're around it, you sense it, you see it you, smell it, you feel it. There's more oxygen in the air being churned up. There's just something about it. And so Jesus said, that is what it's like to do life with me, because when you let me come in you, I will send my Holy Spirit flooding out from you, out into this world. So no longer are you looking to the things of the world to satisfy you, or fill some emptiness inside of you. But that's already done. That's long since been taken care of. And now you walk into this world not needing the world to do something for you, but you will have something to offer this world. You'll walk into situations where you otherwise would have been asking, how do I stack up, how do I measure up.
Now you're walking in so that a river of life can flood out of you into that person, into that dry ground, into that hard place. I'm telling you, God wants to not just meet needs inside of you, God wants to open up a well of living water, springs in the desert that are going to flow out of you into dry places. And everywhere you go, and everyone you touch, and every experience you're in, it's going to be better. It's almost like there's just this river flow and people aren't even going to know. They're just sensing what is happening here being around you. And I want to show you four different ways the Holy Spirit wants to work his life, his river wildlife in you. The first is that you're going to become more curious. As you walk in the power of the Holy Spirit, as you give in to the Spirit's leading, and His guiding, and His tugging. Like I said, sometimes you're going to feel like, Oh I missed it. I put my foot down in the wrong shoe. And you're going to take a couple of steps back in and wonder where did you want me to go that I missed it.
You're going to, at times, sense that and as you follow those promptings, remember it's a still small voice. It's not some big loud overt thing we're looking for, words a billboard, the clouds giving us pictures. It's just that sense of His peace. It's being still with Him long enough to know his voice. And as you do that, as he works through your pleasures, as he works to your desires, random things, little things. I'd love to do this one day. Hold on to that dream. Believe for that dream. In God's due time, it will come to pass. As that happens, here's what I want you to watch for, notice that there's going to be a greater curiosity in you. I really believe one of the greatest unsung assets and benefits of doing life filled to overflowing with the Holy Spirit of God, only possible through a relationship with God's son Jesus Christ, is that you will become a more curious person. It's amazing how powerful curiosity is.
I was, in fact, listening to, this week, an interview with Walter Isaacson. Walter Isaacson is an author, who is amazing. He generally writes biographies. But he wrote some definitive biographies on Leonardo da Vinci, Albert Einstein, and Benjamin Franklin. I mean good for a life's work. And I originally had read the biography he had written on Steve Jobs, which was amazing. He was given access to Steve at the very end of his life and very powerful book. And so I made it my goal this year of my life to read every book, other than that one, that Isaacson's written and my family got them for my birthday. And I'm so excited about it. But I was listening to this interview with him, just kind of get to know him as a person. And he was asked, he said, you know you wrote Benjamin Franklin and Leonardo da Vinci and Albert Einstein's biographies. Was there any similarities between these three? He said, it's funny that you should ask.
There's one thing that I found combing through letters, combing through historical documents that really knits them all together. And he said they were all very curious people. They were extremely curious people. He went on to say, the pattern wasn't that they were smart people, because you and I have met lots of smart people and they don't usually amount to much. Brutal. The pattern, he said, tends to be curiosity across disciplines. And he expounded, passionate, playful, and, occasionally, obsessive curiosity. Take Franklin he, said. Why did he fly a kite with a key on it? He was curious. What's going to happen or how could this possibly go wrong, right? How did he discover the Gulfstream and bifocals? He was curious. I don't know. He's always tinkering. Always, always looking. Like Bill Gates, willing to be confused.
Da Vinci. When you read Da Vinci's journals, you will find funny things at the top of his to-do list. One day he wrote, want to figure out why a woodpecker's tongue is so long. He was curious. He's got stuff to do. Paintings, I presume, waiting to be done. And yet, when he wakes up in the morning, Da Vinci, his to do list is today, What are you going to do today? I'm going to figure out why a woodpecker's tongue is so long. Turns out he was on to something. Because a woodpecker's tongue is 4 times the length of its beak. And many people, for a long time, were wondering how does a woodpecker not bash its brain every time it peckers. Pecks. They say that if you were to smash your head into a tree at the same speed a woodpecker does, it's 10 times the amount of strength that your brain could withstand. You would be dead 10 times over if you head butted a tree like a woodpecker does. But apparently scientists have figured out that every time it goes to do its pecking thing, that its tongue actually wraps around its brain and forms an airbag protecting its brain from what's happening there in the moment.
So Da Vinci was on to something going, I need to figure out, He was on to something. I don't know if he ever figured that out in his lifetime, but he was curious about the woodpecker. Albert Einstein actually, we don't have to wonder about it. Because he actually wrote, I don't have any special talents, but I still have my childlike curiosity, which is why I wonder what it would be like to ride alongside a light beam. Why I wonder how gravity makes things move. Smartest person in the world? Not so much. Just endlessly curious. I bring this up because we know Jesus was curious. How do we know that? Well, he has a lot of questions. Did you know that Jesus was asked 183 questions. If you come through the New Testament, 183 times people asked Jesus questions. Do you know how many of those questions He answered? Three of them. Almost every other time you asked Jesus a question, do you know what his response was? They call it the Socratic method. Really, it's just, what would Jesus do, He would respond with a question. In all, if you add up the questions that Jesus asked you will come up with 307 questions. Every situation, everywhere He went, Jesus was curious. He was asking.
Of course, he wasn't asking to know. He knew everything. He was asking to help us understand. He was trying to provoke a greater curiosity. I believe, when the spirit of God is inside of you, hovering over the waters as it were, like in Genesis, you're going to notice there's curiosity. You're asking questions about God. Questions about other people. And here's what I want throw at you, you'll be better at asking questions of yourself. When you really triggered. When you're in a foul mood. Instead of just going with it, you'll stop and ask yourself, why do I feel like this today. What's going on here? Why will you do that? Rivers have currents. And do you know what informs currents? Things happening beneath the surface. To understand a river, to understand its movement, you got to look at what's happening, but deduce what's happening down below. Is there a shelf that's dropping off? Is there structure here? Is there a rock here?
That's what makes rivers dangerous and that's what makes humans unpredictable. Not what we're seeing above, not what's going on, but what's happening down below. What is this touching? What wound is this tapping into? What is this bringing up? What happened before? When you watch people act bad, when you watch people frustrated, you have to almost get curious. And I wonder what's causing this. What would cause such a strong reaction? What's happening below the water? And the Holy Spirit is going to help you to be better at being curious with yourself. Instead of just lashing out when you're frustrated, but to stop for a second and ask yourself some questions. To stop in a moment and ask why would someone respond so strongly. What's happening here? And we're going to be curious enough to go back to God every single day going, I need to know who you are. You need to show me something fresh. I'm not satisfied with the level I've received. I want to know you more. I want to know you better. I want to experience you. I want everything that Jesus has for me. I'm telling you that you can tell when the spirit of God is involved in your life. When you're curious.
Secondly, when you're content. When you're content, content with who He made you to be, content with where you're at in life, you will know the spirit of God is moving through you and in you and out of you like a river wild. When you look at your life and you say, you've done all things well. My cup runs over. The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places. And the spirit needs to help us do that because, by nature, we are so often insecure. By nature, we are so often jealous. By nature, we so often don't appreciate what's in our hands because we are so busy staring at what's in someone else's. Did they get something better than me? Did you get my blessing? Did you get my promotion? That was supposed to be my opportunity. But it takes the secret, and only the secret things of God belong to God, so only the spirit of God can help us tap into the secret things. And Paul said, I have discovered the secret of being content. How does the Spirit do that? We learn of Him.
Philippians 4:11, to be content, whatever my circumstances are, just as happy with as little as he gives us as if he gives as much. Just as happy with as much as with little. He said I found the recipe, the recipe for being happy, whether I'm full, or whether I'm hungry, whether my hands are full, or my hands are empty, here's the secret. Are you ready? The Spirit is going to teach you this. Whatever I have. Wherever I am I can make it through anything in the one who makes me who I am. I'm telling you something you come to Him to drink when you feel thirsty. You come to Him when you feel like, wait I don't have that. Now that thirst has come back. You go back to Jesus. You go back to the one who made you. Go back to the one who died for you. Go back to the one who raised you to life in His Resurrection power. And all of a sudden you're going to start to feel the river flowing. You're going to start to feel that spring bubbling up in that dry land. You're going to start to realize my cup runs over. You're going to start to realize my lot in life is good. The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places. And it's going to be two things that are going to help you to be more content.
Two things. This is going to help you today. The first thing is you're going to remember that social media is all fake. I'm helping you today. If you want to tap into the river wild in your situation, just remind yourself that social media is fake. I'm going to show you this. This doesn't make me look good. This is the real story. I was in I was in Charlotte, North Carolina this week and I was packing at the last minute. Some friends of ours said, hey, do you want to do a hike while you're here? And I was like probably. A North Carolina hike? As much as I would love to walk around your flat state. But for the people and experience and it actually ended up being a great hike. I was taking some stuff up for the hike and then I was also doing a wedding. I felt like James Bond. Here's my suit and here's my hiking outfit in the bag. And I saw my pocket and I was like I should bring that just survival situations.
You know it's good to have a knife on you, and then I was like how ridiculous is that. It's a North Carolina little cute mountain. It'll be wonderful. And so I didn't bring it. And I remember that moment of leaving it there, and then we got to the trail head, and we did the hike and, at the very end, the person we were hiking with was like, hey I got a cooler full of chilled Topo Chicos in the car for the post hike. Topo Chico and all of us just rejoiced. There's nothing like the knowledge of a cold bubbly drink when you're at the end of a hike in the sun. It was 90 degrees with humidity, so we were all just soaked head to toe at the end of it. But then we were rummaging around in the car and nobody had a pocket knife. No one had a bottle opener. She could have sworn she threw one in. I would never shame Holly for forgetting the bottle opener. But there's Topo Chicos all there, with ice, but there's no bottle opener. I will, I'm not going to lie to you. I spring to life. This is what I was born for.
I thought of my life, was sad for a moment, then I remembered how resourceful God has made us to be. And so this is what I posted on my social media. You probably saw this little clip here of my resourcefulness. Oh. Oh. Whoa. MacGyver. Did someone call MacGyver? Did someone call MacGyver? Which looked good and it was amazing a little clip. But that's not the whole, that's not the whole- that's not the whole story. I'm going to show you the longer version that I did not show for my Instagram. Now hold on. Run it again. I need, you got to hear the ending. You got to hear the ending. So check out the longer version. Check out the longer version of this video and listen very carefully. We got to hear the ending of it. Something I say right at the end. You got to trim that video. You got to trim that video. I instinctively knew the second it happened, you've got to trim that video. You've got to trim that video. And I did. I trimmed it down to 4 seconds from 14. Because the 4 seconds I showed made it looked like the first try. Look at this everybody, bang. It's open.
So here's my point, we're all doing that. We're all trimming in that video. And because we live our lives jealous, watching videos that somebody trimmed. We all are trimming stuff to make it look like this is how it was. It was so easy and effortless, but the reality is, every one of us bang our hands into stuff sometimes. That doesn't work. We're just not putting that stuff on the internet. And so anytime you're not pleased with the stretch of the river that God has dedicated to you, just remember A, social media is all curated and fake. And the second thing I want you to remember is this, seasons change. Seasons change. A river looks so different if you walk up to it in January versus if you walk up to it in July versus if you walk up to in September. And the seasons and the ebb and flow of life and the different times that we all face, just remember, if you're not happy where you're at, just remember that river's still moving, and stuff is still happening, and God is sending clouds upstream to lead to a deluge that's going to come for you.
If you're not happy today, then just keep trusting, and keep walking, and believe the season that you might leave the river to go find it was actually headed to you the whole time. And you're going to be so much more thankful for it, if you don't give up. And how many people walked away chasing something that God actually had on the way to them. It was headed there. It was going to get there and it was going to mean more to you when you didn't short circuit things to get it in your timing. But God, instead, had it coming for you in His timing. As you listen to the Spirit, you're going to be content. And then thirdly you're going to be confident. Confident. Those two words that God just, in a moment, I was just sitting there and these two words, curiosity and confident. The other things flowed in later. But those two words God said, that's what my spirit wants to do in my bride. I want a curious people. I wonder, I wonder, I wonder. I want those people childlike, playful, flying some kites with some keys on it a little bit. What discoveries are here in this church to be.
I'm not just talking about ministry stuff. I'm talking business ideas, and inventions, and paintings, and songs. Curious. Then confidence. And maybe I'm just preaching this message to me a little bit, but this last year there's been some hits that I feel like I've experienced and faced. That have robbed me of some of my confidence. It's tough to make a decision and automatically know half the country is going to dislike what you're doing. And, no matter what you do, there's going to be people in the church who think you made the wrong decision. It's tough to make a call. And sometimes I make the wrong one. Sometimes I made the right one. But other people don't see it that exact same way. And what it can do, over time, is take out your confidence. And when you've tried and failed or when you've had things just end up difficult or hard, eventually it can make you resistant to the idea of putting yourself out there. Maybe some of you have been through some relationship difficulties that have made you just feel like maybe there's no one for me. Or your journey with trying to have a family and have kids.
You can get a little bit discouraged where you just lose your confidence. And you stop believing that you're actually capable of doing something, growing something, building something, trying something. And you start to believe lies like maybe my best days are behind me. And maybe I just wasn't cut out for this and maybe this is something other people can do. Maybe this just isn't for me. And then you can just resign yourself to mediocrity where God has called you to greatness and to impact. I feel the Holy Spirit is so strong that He today wants to flow his water through you and out of you. And one of the things that he wants to do is he wants to bring your confidence back. He wants to bring your confidence back. That you're going to step out and try like you've never tried before. That you're going to dust off the failure. You're going to keep going. You're going to keep believing. You're going to keep dreaming. He's trying to bring back your confidence. How does He do that? He does that by reminding you that you are not your productivity, or performance, or accomplishments. You are, wait for it, His son or daughter. That's going to bring you confidence. And that is what the Spirit is all about.
Romans chapter 8 says, for you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear. That's the confidence trap. Where your confidence is only tied to what you've done recently and what you've been able to do and the numbers you've been able to pull in at work. When you pull your identity down to that, it's going to make you a slave now because even on a good day you have to top it. And you're going to be a slave to fear. But, instead, you received a spirit, the spirit of sonship. And by that spirit, we cry Abba, father. The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children. Church, God's Holy Spirit, if you listen to what He's saying, He's just saying to you, you are my son. What are we saying to ourselves sometimes? You suck. Is that just me? You suck. You're the worst. You're so stupid. You're so fat. I can't believe how dumb you are. Nobody wants you nobody. Wants to be around you.
That's what the slavery to fear says, but the Spirit, when we listen, the spirit when we let the river flow, the spirit when we're spending time with Jesus, is always saying you're a son. You're a son. You're a son. You're a daughter. You're a daughter. You are loved. The River Wild is setting someone free today from the slavery of fear to the peace and serenity that comes through sonship. And when you get along with God, the raging river and the peaceful tranquility is going to remind you you're just loved. Just get up here and let me love you. Why did Jesus get told by the Father, you are my beloved Son in whom I'm well pleased at the beginning and at the end of His ministry. Because He wanted Him to know before He ever lifted a finger to touch a demoniac, before He ever fed anybody, before He ever preached a sermon, that He was just a loved son and that wasn't going to change, and even the cross couldn't change that. Even the cross couldn't stop that. Even his most difficult dauntingness He was saying no matter how this goes, no matter what I love you.
I'm telling you, when you are armed with the Spirit's voice in your ears, it'll give you your confidence back. You'll try new things because you'll know, even if this doesn't turn out, I'm loved. If it goes well, I'm not loved more. If it goes badly, I'm not loved less. Y'all, I'm getting my confidence back. We're going to walk in confidence. We're going to dream new things. We're going to dare greatly and rise again with the confidence that the spirit has decided and declared that we're His children and it's never going to change. We'll become more compassionate too. Spirit working in us is going to remind us we're not the only ones struggling with the stuff. And the Spirit's going to open us up to the revelation that all that water flowing through you, it's not just for you. It's for everybody who's thirsty around you. You think you're the only one who ever struggled with your worth? You think you've ever only everyone who's ever had debilitating difficulties with depression or darkness? That river's for someone else. That river's for someone else.
Why have we always been a church wanting to expand to other cities? We must go to other places. We must go. It's not for an ego trip. It's because there are other people thirsty, broken, just like us and we want to tell them about it. We're going to become more compassionate and that compassion is going to cause us to rise up in action because true compassion always leads to righteous action. We will always do something. We're not just going to feel love, we're going to show love. We're going to give love. That's why we are a church that will never be ashamed to talk about money, because the budget is going to have an impact. It's going to feed people, heal people, save people. God uses what we put it His hand to multiply. In comes the drink, out goes the river. That's like an offering. What little offering we give to God it leads to a river of him touching people.
I'm telling you those little mouthfuls of water you get as you give are nothing compared to the river of what's going to be unleashed as you receive the blessing of giving, which is always what a man sows, the same he shall reap, except multiplied. You're going to become more compassionate because listen rivers, this is so important, rivers have upstream and downstream. And God not only blessed other people, who gave to this ministry and others so that you could be reached, but there's downstreams too. And downstream is the obligation of the reached is to reach. The obligation of the saved is to save. The obligation of the touched is now to touch. If you've received a blessing, it's your opportunity and chance to pay it forward to rising up in compassion. I think about, I wrote down the word dependence. Rivers are full of dependence. If a river dies, the flora, the fauna, the fish, everything is impacted by a river going away. So you better keep drinking and receiving and letting him turn into a river because there's other people looking to you going, will you now save me. Will you now heal me? Will you now send that river on to me?
Isaiah 44, verse 3 says, I will pour water on the thirsty land and the streams on the dry ground. I will pour out my spirit on your offspring and my blessing on your, say it with me, descendants. You can't give up. Your descendants need to be impacted. You can't give up. Your great-grandchildren need to be touched by Jesus. You can't give up. I know it's hard right now. You want to throw in the towel right now, but you got to keep fighting forward because someone's got to tell your grandchildren about Jesus. And who's going to do it if you give up today? We need to populate this world full of people who know Jesus and love Him and are sent into the world on mission. And we need to do that fearlessly. And only the Spirit can take away the fear. Now we've talked about being content, confident, compassionate. We've talked about being curious. And I said there were four things the Spirit's going to do, but all these four things have one overarching thing that knits them all together. And that's this, the Spirit's going to make you courageous. The Spirit's going to make you brave. Because you got to be brave to be content.
You got to be brave to be curious. You've got to be brave to be confident and compassionate. And the spirit, if He's going to do anything, He's going to make you courageous. And here's the funny thing, as Jesus talked about it, he was talking about it to disciples who were going to need that bravery. Because the spirit coming for us meant them losing Jesus. Did you catch it in verse 39? The spirit had not yet been given because Jesus was not yet glorified. But the day he got glorified, ascending to Heaven in a cloud, they lost their own personal Jesus. They lost BFF Jesus they were chilling with for three and a half years. So they had to cheer up buttercup. It's better, trust me, it's better. It's better not just for you, but it's better for every single person who's going to be touched by you. It took courage and the Spirit not only is the solution for our fear, but as He comes into our hearts, the power He gives us is the power of courage to face all the difficult dark things.
In fact, that's Acts 1:8, but you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you. Even as I preach this message, I could feel and sense some of you objecting to different things. But I would be curious, but you do understand. I would be this, but you don't have any idea how many discouraging things I have faced. It's easy for you to say be content, but what about, And all of those things start to pop up. And what God is saying, in every single situation, is just come to me and trust me because I know you don't feel like you have the courage to step out in faith right now. I know you don't feel like you have the courage, but if you come to me, living water is going to flow through you. And that living water is going to be full of power. It's no mistake that water turns into power. Water. Water churns over flywheels. Niagara Falls powers cities in two countries. I'm telling you, where water thunders, the result is always power. You might not, It's finally time for the sermon title.
The title of this message is what God wants to give you. He wants to give you liquid courage. He wants to give you liquid courage. He's got liquid courage for you. You see. You see because in our world, when people need a little liquid courage, they might open up a bottle of vodka. I need confidence to talk to that girl. I need confidence and so what we think is, we think, I need confidence. I need a little self-assurance. I need you to pour me up a little liquid courage. But God doesn't want you to turn to vodka for courage. He wants living water. He wants living water to flow into you and that living water is going to turn into power that comes upon you. I'm telling you the self-assurance, the confidence, the ability to handle debilitating difficulty and darkness, it doesn't come from a bottle. It comes from above. It doesn't come. It doesn't come from whiskey and wine. It comes from a wind, mighty and rushing, triumphant, freely given, offered to you any time you need it, every time you are asking for it. He wants to pour out water and that water is going to lead to a wind. Wind. When the spirit finally showed up, they were ready for power.
All right. Earthquakes. And they heard it before they saw. Before any of the early church spitfire, they heard a wind. I was in Dallas two weeks ago and my computer wasn't working right. The space bar was stuck. Big deal because I had allocated the six hours of the flying time to work on the edits for my new book. And I had a real big time table and it's a big deal so that I could finish that so I can move on to the next thing. And I get on the plane I can't do anything. My space bar won't work. I said, God I guess you're just trying to give me a gift. So I bought a book in the airport and I just spent the rest of the flight reading the book. And it was a beautiful gift. I was it was wonderful. And it got to the church, and I was in a meeting, I said could someone from the IT department come up. My space bar won't work. I gotta get through these edits tonight. And this guy came back and he got a can of wind. That's what he said. He said, I got a can of wind. It can get rid of what's sticking your space bar. He grabbed this can and all of a sudden, it was more mighty and rushing than that, and then he walked out of the room. My space bar was totally fine. That's all it took. I'm like really, I'm like cussing mad on this airplane.
And all it took for him was, and I just wonder if there's some stuck people today. And you don't realize. You're looking to this. You're looking to this. You're looking to this. You're looking to this. You think this big elaborate problem. You think you need a whole new computer and God's solution to things is always to send a wind. It's always His Holy Spirit. It's his liquid courage. It's going to flow into you. It's going to cause the stuck places in your heart to become free. What Paul said in Ephesians 5, don't be drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life. Instead, be filled with the Holy Spirit. Why would He put a spirit on one side and spirits on the other? Not because there's not liberty to enjoy the gift of a glass of wine, if you have that liberty. He's just saying that that's not where your help's going to come from. That's not going to solve any problems in your life. That'll turn down the volume and turn down your ability to care about things temporarily, but tomorrow the problem's still there.
When the Spirit comes flooding into your life, when the Spirit comes upon you, when God's gifts begin to flow through you, when God causes you to be awakened to who your identity is as a blood-bought son or daughter of the King. I'm telling you we're not mighty rushing wind flows. I'm talking about when you're filled with that kind of liquid courage, now you can walk and look at the problem, the same problem the alcohol wants to dim our view of, and now you can look at that problem, and you're not scared of it because you realize you're walking and rolling with the one who's bigger than any problem, any difficulty, any darkness, any danger. You're not scared anymore. What a thing in life to be eyes wide open, totally aware, completely looking at the same problem you wanted to shut out before, but to now speak faith over it and say this will be the source of a river of love flowing to other people.
But here's the key. Here's the key, people, and we're almost done. The key in life is to never ever, ever confuse a pry off with a twist off. A pry off with a twist off. You see, in the moment when we think we have to have all this force, and all this force, but really it's just a twist off. I think we do the same thing all the time with the Holy Spirit and with walking with Jesus. What did I tell you that the Feast of Tabernacles was commemorating? The water from a rock. Paul says that that rock represents Jesus. 1 Corinthians 10, they all drink from the same spiritual drink. They drank and that spiritual rock that followed them, and notice, and that rock was Christ. Jesus was a drinking fountain. First miracle he ever performed in the New Testament, water into drinking fountain. Coming to Him to receive what you need. Coming to Him to see things change. Coming to Him to survive when you can't.
So the rock was Jesus and what was keeping them alive in the wilderness so they didn't know it was Christ. And how did the water flow? We're told in Exodus chapter 17, that Moses stood before the people and he struck the rock. And when Moses struck the rock, water flowed out of it so the people could drink. Now they got thirsty again later on and Numbers picks up the story. And the same sort of situation, the people are complaining and afraid. And so God told Moses to the exact same thing. Numbers 20, verse 8, take the rod, the rod that you have in your hand, go in front of the people. But he said, this time is different. He said speak to the rock. If you speak to the rock now, it will yield its water. But Moses was sick and tired of these people. They got on his last nerve. And so he got up in front of the people and he said, how long will you quit trusting God? How long do I have to deal with you, you rebellious people And so the Bible says on that day, he grabbed the rod and he smashed the rock.
Now it worked and the water came out because God so he'll bless us even when we don't get the blessing of it. He'll bless other people through us even when we don't get the benefit of it. But it cost Moses something. He wouldn't get to go into the promised land because of his striking a rock that he was supposed to speak to. It wasn't a pry off cap, it was a twist off. Why? Once the rock is struck, it never needs to be struck again. The rock was struck on the cross and blood and water flowed out. So you don't need to strike yourself. So you don't need to beat yourself up. So you don't need to think I need to pay some penance. I need to do something. I need to keep striking that rock. I feel like I've really messed up. I need to do something to honor God. You never need to strike a rock. It's already been struck. You don't ever have, what do you do now? Speak to the rock. Speak to the rock. If you speak to the rock, the water will flow and Christ is that rock. So if you need a spirit, if you're feeling the shame, if you feel like you're dirty, if you feel like you're traumatized, speak to the rock and the water will flow. Speak to the rock and the river will pour out. Speak to the rock, church. Speak to the rock and believe for that Holy Spirit to come upon us.