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Watch 2022-2023 online sermons » Matt Hagee » Matt Hagee - Go To Work On Yourself

Matt Hagee - Go To Work On Yourself

Matt Hagee - Go To Work On Yourself
Matt Hagee - Go To Work On Yourself

If you would, please, turn in your Bibles to Matthew, the 25th chapter. We're going to look at a familiar passage to many and discuss one of the parables of Jesus' in the context of the conversation we began last week with the theme that "It's time to go to work". Last week, because it was the Sunday before valentine's, we discussed the work that needed to be done in marriage. And for some, it was a well-invested moment, as they got the opportunity to show and share love with their spouse. And for others, they heard information that they needed to apply, and hopefully went home and did homework, because Tuesday was valentine's day. Don't let all those good nuggets of gold just go to waste: use them.

But tonight we consider going to work on ourselves, asking ourselves if who we are we can be. Are we, today, who God wants us to be? Have we fully achieved what God has sent us to this earth to accomplish? Are we willing to do the work that is required to improve? How many of you would at least admit that you know somebody, maybe you don't, but maybe you know somebody who could use a little improvement? Last week, we considered that the marriage was the pillars upon which the family was built. And the family is upon which the church is built. And the church is the foundation of truth in the society upon which the nation is built. But if our marriages, and our families, and our churches are going to be better, then we ourselves must understand what we have to do to be better. Who you are right now has all of the raw ingredients of what God wants you to accomplish in this life.

But there are still some things that need to be refined. There's some things that need to be added to. There's some things that need to be pulled out. There's some tweaks and some changes that must be made if you are going to accomplish what God wants you to achieve in your life. Everyone that God uses goes through the process of work in order to become whom God wants them to be. Moses was born, and in him was the ingredients of a deliverer. But it wasn't until he was 80 that God began to use him to the fullness of his potential and purpose, because it took a long time to prepare him to be the guy that God wanted him to be. There's a verse in Psalm 105 that tells us about Joseph and how God used him to go before his brothers. The verse tells us that God sent Joseph in front of his family. While he was in Egypt, he was fettered with irons, and his neck was shackled with chains. And it says: and until the promise came to pass, the word of the Lord tested him.

When you read the life story of Joseph, when Joseph was a teenager, he had a vision that he was going to one day rule. But for 17 years, from the time of his teenage years to the time of his 30's, the word of the Lord tested him as he was throne in a pit, and then from a pit to a prison, and from a prison to a palace. But until he was willing to do the work, he wasn't able to be what God created him to be. I believe that in this room, God has created some individuals to change the world. I believe that God can use you to change the world where he's planted you. The great commission is a working commission. It tells us to go. Say that word with me, go. Go into all the world. And so often, we want to make that just simple geography. We want to believe that God wants us to focus on a window on the map and make sure everyone in that area has heard about Jesus Christ. That's not accurate.

The Bible tells us that the heavens declare the glory of God. God doesn't need you to tell others about him. He can do that with the sun, the moon, and the stars. They're celestial evangelists declaring to everyone who sees them that there's a God in heaven, who created them, who calls them by name, who has them numbered. What God wants you to go into and the world he wants you to change is the world where he's planted you. God wants you to save those that you know the best. God doesn't want you to introduce yourself to individuals you've never met to whose languages you don't even speak on some foreign mountain in an altitude where you can't even breathe.

Don't get me wrong. Some he does call to foreign mission fields. But not everybody in this room is going to Abu Dhabi. But we are going to work tomorrow. We are going back to school. We are going to encounter members of our family that we know don't know Jesus. And the only thing that we can do to change their world is to go to work. Go to work on loving them with the kind of love that God gave to us. You say, what kind of love was that? He loved you when you weren't worth saving. And it was only through his unconditional love that you found grace. And grace is the gift that brought faith. And faith is how you got saved. So when you're willing to work on loving somebody like that, God will use you to go into all the world. We've got work to do.

As long as there's souls in San Antonio that don't know Jesus, we've got work to do. As long as there's a nation that needs to return to righteousness, we've got work to do. As long as there are families, who are being torn apart by fear, and bitterness, and betrayal, and past hurts, we've got work to do! We cannot look at our lives and consider ourselves a completed work, because we've received the grace that Jesus Christ has given to us. We must look at the life that we've been given, and say, "Lord, what work do you have me to do for your glory"? So tonight I want to consider how we must work on ourselves. The Bible is a book of self-examination. God, in conversation with Adam in the book of Genesis, he asked him a question. He said, Adam, where art thou? God wasn't looking for Adam's location. God is all knowing. He knew right where Adam was.

What he was asking Adam is, where are you personally? When I left you, you were pure and we could walk in communion. Now you're hiding from me. Why are you hiding? What have you done that has created separation between us? How often has God asked us to examine ourselves with that still small voice that asks a similar question? Where art thou? Where's the individual who could come into the sanctuary and lift their hands to worship the Lord without any cause of concern? Where's that person that had a first love that sought me early in the morning and thanked me late at night? Where is that one that was willing to shine for the glory of God and is now so closed off that some might not even know that they even know who Jesus is? Where art thou? It's a question of self-examination.

Paul told the church in Corinthians, examine yourselves. He said: examine yourselves as to whether you be of the faith: test yourselves. The Bible is not only a book of self-examination, but it's a book of work. Philippians 2:12, it says: work out your own salvation. Say that with me, work out your own salvation. Now that word "Work out", I know that it comes up every new years as we make our resolutions. But it's a very practical picture of what God expects us to do with salvation. People say, well now I thought salvation wasn't of works. Absolutely not. No one has achieved salvation through work. Salvation is a gift. But it's what you do with the gift that God wants you to work out. When you start working out, you don't go grab the thousand-pound rack of weights and just pick it up over your head. You go grab the two-pound weight. And you look over your shoulder to your right and your left to make sure nobody's watching.

You look in the mirror, turn sideways so you see the good muscle. And after about six months and two pounds, you go to five pounds. And if you work at it long enough, eventually you'll have enough more. That's what God's looking for you to do with your salvation. The longer you serve him, be able to accomplish more. Work out your salvation until you can accomplish things that give God the opportunity to use you at your maximum potential. Last week, we said, when it came to marriage, that marriages never perform to their highest potential: they perform to their highest ability of preparation. And it's the same in your life. You don't ever get to your highest potential: you simply get the to your highest level of preparation. You may have great abilities. But if you haven't prepared, those abilities will never be seen.

The Bible is not only a book of self-examination, but it's a book that speaks to the worker and against the idol. Consider the example that God our father gives us. When we meet him in Genesis 1, he is a working God. He wasn't on vacation: he was working. He worked six days, and then he took a rest. He gives us the ratio of work, six on/one off, which means all of you folks, who are complaining about your leave time need to read the God-time schedule, six on/one off. When he created man, he created man in his own image. And in Genesis 2, he put man to work. When he sent his son to the earth, he didn't send him on a field trip: he sent him for work. He did the work while he was here.

In three years, consider the work that Jesus Christ accomplished. From the day of his baptism to the day of his death, he did the work of seeking and saving that which was lost. He did the work of binding sickness and conquering disease. He did the work of casting out powers and principalities. He did the work of reaching those who were beyond reach and touching those who could not be touched. He did the work of taking death, hell and the grave, and locking it up inside the shackles of prison, and coming out with the keys in his hand. And now he has risen. And now he has been seated. And now he has been given a name that is above every name. Why? Because he was willing to do the work! And he's left us with work to do. The Bible says: it is not by might, nor by power, but by his spirit. We do not work for our glory and gain: we work for his. We do not work that we might achieve accolades.

But Paul said it best: God forbid that I should glory save in the cross of Christ my Lord. He gave us work to do, spiritual work to pull down every stronghold and high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, to bind on earth what we want bound in heaven, and to loose on earth what we want loosed in heaven. He gave us physical work to do. To his disciples and to us, he said, go. He said, occupy until I come. "Occupy" is a military term. It simply means that you are going to hold your ground until Jesus Christ returns. The modern American mindset is retreat until they quit chasing you. Jesus Christ said, "Put on the whole armor of God," through Paul in the book of Ephesians, and "Take a stand in the evil day". He told his disciples: if any man comes after me, let him take up his cross and follow me. That requires work.

Not only was he working in the Genesis, but he's working in revelation. Whenever he comes back, he's coming back with a New Heaven and a new earth: that's work. He's coming back with a new Jerusalem: that's work. He's going to establish his throne and sit on that throne for a thousand generations: that's work. And if we are created in his image, then it is time to go to work. Let's read our text for the evening, Matthew 25, beginning at verse 14. We'll work through this together. If you are there, say, amen. "For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants", say: own servants. "And delivered his goods", say: his goods.

"To them. And to one, he gave five talents: and to another, two: and to another, one: to each according to his own ability. And immediately, he went on a journey. And he, who had received five talents, went and he traded with them and he made another five talents. And likewise, he who had received two, gained two more. And he, who had received one, he went and dug in the ground, and he hid his Lord's money. And after a long time, the Lord of those servants, came and he settled accounts. Jesus is coming back some day to settle the accounts. And so he, who had received five, came and brought five, saying, 'Lord you delivered to me five. And look: I have gained five more talents besides them'. And he said to him, 'well done, good and faithful servant. You were faithful over a few things. I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your Lord'. He also, who had received two talents, came and said, 'Lord, you delivered to me two talents. Look: I gained two more besides them'. And his Lord said to him, 'well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a few things, and I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of the Lord'. And then he, who had received one talent, came to him and said, 'Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering what you have not scattered. And I was afraid. And I went and I hid your talent in the ground. Look: there you have what is yours'. But his Lord answered, and said to him, 'you wicked and lazy servant. You knew that I reap where I do not sow and gather where I have not scattered. You ought to have deposited my money with the bankers and at my coming, I would have received back my own with interest. Therefore, take the talent from him, and give it to the one who has ten. For everyone who has more, will be given, and he who will have abundantly. But from him, who does not have, even what he has will be taken away.' and he cast the unprofitable servant into outer darkness where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth".

Heavenly Father, let your word of truth give us inspiration tonight to realize that all that we have been given, you have entrusted us with. And it is our responsibility to do the work that must be done in the world where you have placed us: that when you return to settle accounts, we would simply hear you say, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant". In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.

Now when it comes to this parable, many people are familiar with the concept. And often, they've heard the ratios discussed. Well, there's one with five. And there's one with two. And there's one with one. In modern mindset and Philosophy, we would start to build a series of excuses for the guy with one, because we would say, well, he felt picked upon because he was not treated equally. However, whenever you read the opening verses, you understand very quickly that God is not a respecter of persons, but he is a rewarder of effort. We read in the Book of Acts, acts 10, Peter speaking on the day of Pentecost. He says: now I perceive that God is no respecter of persons. When he saw God's spirit poured out on all, he recognize that God did not favor one individual over another. God looks at you with the same loving eyes that he looked upon Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, David, Joshua, Daniel, Samson, all of the greats in his word, all of the greats in his kingdom. He sees you through the same lenses.

So the first thing that you have to throw out of your mind whenever it comes time to go to work is to stop thinking that others have it easier or better than you do. God is no respecter of persons, but he is a rewarder of effort. James 2, it says: faith without works is what? Dead. Hebrews 11:6, it says that God is a rewarder of those who diligently seek him. That word "Diligently" is the cornerstone of that verse, because it means that you seek God on such a continual and constant basis that you constantly are pursuing his plan for your life, and then the rewards come. We consider work to be a moment of effort, not a diligent, continual effort. We feel like if we do it once, God should turn on the tap.

The preacher says that whenever you sow a seed, you get a harvest. You put a ten in the pan: you want a hundred in the mailbox when you get home. God, why didn't I win the sweepstakes? I gave. God says, he is a rewarder of those seek him. He's looking for consistent effort. He doesn't respect individuals, but he does honor work. The thing that we see in this verse is that each one of these individuals should have considered the work had to do, not worried about what the others were doing. Whenever it comes time for you to go to work for the kingdom, you need to go to work with what you have. The Bible tells us that servants. Whose servants were they? His. Goods. Whose goods were they? His. And he gave those goods to them ability. Now you say, well, a talent, what is a talent? A talent is about 2.2 million dollars in the modern currency.

So to one servant, he gave almost 12 million dollars. To another servant, he gave about 5 million dollars. To the other, he gave 2.2 million dollars. How many of you wish you had a master like that? What they had, they didn't earn. What they had, they were given. And the same is true in every one of our lives. The Bible tells us that we are pastures: that it is he who created us and not we ourselves. In this room are individuals that if we were to start to look at them through the microscope of self, we would find that one has several gifts and abilities, and the other has but one gift and ability. And rather than sit there and celebrate what God has given, we would look at the difference between and start playing the comparison game.

Well, God expects a lot from the guy that he gave five talents to, because look how much he gave him. God does not expect more from the guy with five than he does with one. What he wants from all is effort. Consider this story as it continues to go. Everything that every one of us have, we receive from the Lord. For James 1:17 says: every good and every perfect gift comes from where? Above. What you have, you were given. Who you are, you were created to be. Why you exist isn't a method of self-discovery or personal achievement. Why you exist is because God chose you. And he planted you here for such a time as this. The question is: what are you doing with what he's given you for his glory? Because the master will return. I said, the master will return. And when he returns, there is an expectation of return on investment.

The New York stock exchange is made up of several companies that are constantly trying to convince individuals outside of that company to invest in it. Maybe some of you here have invested in companies that you've never even walked through the doors of. You've only read what the paper had to say about the kind of companies that they were. And based on what was printed in what is now being called "The Fake News". I don't want to give you any fear, but hey. Based on what was printed and said, you said, well, that's sounds like a reasonable investment. And you made the investment. Now out of all of the people that I have ever heard of who ever invested in anything, I don't know that any of them ever wrote the investment check, saying, I fully do not expect there to be any return on this investment: I just consider it a privilege to throw my money away.

The master returned, and you know what he wanted? A return on the investment. He didn't begin the conversation by saying, I gave you five: where are my five? He didn't look at the guy with one, and say, I'm cutting you some slack: I only gave you one. He looked at all of them, and said: where is the return? Three servants, three distributions, one expectation. Each of them were given according to their ability. Maybe it was their maturity. Maybe it was the master's knowledge of their capacity. Regardless of the reason, they all had the same outcome expected of them upon their return. The message and the application is this: on Judgment Day when God comes and he gathers those who have been saved by the blood of the lamb before him, he's going look at our life. And he's going to consider what we did and what he expected of us. And then we are going to be judged for the difference between where we are and where we should have been.

There's a difference between "Well done, thou good and faithful servant" and just "Well, you're done". He's not going to look at you, and say, hey, Billy Graham filled stadiums: why didn't you? He's going to look, and say, what did you do with what I gave you? The gift that I entrusted you with, where did you sow it? The return that I was looking for, how did you achieve it? You see God has work for all of us to do. And I assure you, regardless of how you perceive it, regardless of what little thing it happens to be, God wants you to make a difference in somebody's life. Mordecai ham is a pastor, who changed the world. And very few have ever seen his face nor know his name. But Mordecai ham was faithful to preach the gospel. And one night, he was preaching the gospel at a tent revival in the state of North Carolina. And a teenage boy by the name of William Graham knelt at the altar and gave his life to Christ.

Billy Graham is now known by presidents and kings, and has highways named after him, and has filled stadiums telling the whole world the same message that Mordecai Ham shared that night behind that pulpit: that all must be saved and all must receive the blood of Jesus Christ. Where would Billy Graham be if Mordecai Ham did not fulfill his calling? Ananias in the Book of Acts, not the one that dropped dead. We know what happened to him. But Ananias is in Damascus. And God, in his prayer time, speaks to Ananias, and says, I have something for you to do. And Ananias says: Lord, what is it? He says: I want you to go to the street called straight, and there is one there, who is called Saul.

He says, God, you want me to go pray for Hitler? And at that time, that's exactly what Saul was. He was a persecutor of the church. He had warrants for their arrests. He had just held the cloaks of those who stoned Stephen. He was not a nice guy. But in one portion of one chapter, God speaks to Ananias. And Ananias goes to the place where God wanted him to go. And he touches Saul's eyes, and the scales fall off. And suddenly Saul is converted to Paul. And the rest, as they say, is history. But where would we be if we didn't have the letters that Paul had written to the churches? And where would Paul be if he was never given the opportunity to encounter a faithful servant of the Lord like Ananias? You see God, in his own way, has some ability to interlink our lives together: that regardless of what he does with one, to get the job done. So don't consider the talent that you have or the ones that you don't have. Understand that there is an expectation of a return on investment whenever God comes back.

Jesus said to his disciples, he said: you didn't choose me, but I chose you. And I chose you that you should bear fruit and that your fruit should remain. There are only two kinds of servants in this parable: there's not three. We look at the one with five, and we say that's one. We look at the guy with two, and we say there's another. And we look at the guy with one, and say that's the third. But that's not true. There's only two. And one servant is faithful, and the other is wicked. There are only two kinds of servants in this house right now. One servant is faithful and the other is wicked. Examine yourself and decide which one of those you are. When the master returned, the two, who were faithful, went to him, and said, here's what you gave us: here's what we did. Whenever the master returned, the wicked one went, and rather than give an account, he gave an excuse. How many of you know that there are people who are really good at giving excuses? It's not my fault.

You see what had happened was... Excuses are things that are born into our human nature. And we have to abandon those if we're going to do the work of seeing improvement made. Don't waste your time worrying about what others have. Invest your time working on what God has given you. Don't waste your time comparing yourself with the guy who's got five or the guy who's got two. Tell yourself, if I take one, and I make two, I'm just as good as him. And if I take two and make four, I'm doing better on the percentage of return. See yourself in the ability of your growth potential, not your weighted downness. Don't work on worrying about what others are doing. Work on counting the blessings that God had poured out upon you in your open life.

Don't look at what somebody else has, and say, "God, if you'd just give me that, the things I could do for you". Look at what he has given you. Say, "God, you've given me breath. And with my breath, I'll praise you. You've given me strength. And with my strength, I'll work for you. You've given me a mind. And with my mind, I'll be willing to go where you send me. All that I have, Father, it's yours, because you sent it, and I'm willing to use it that you might be glorified in me". Because one servant made excuses, and two servants made good.

Ralph Waldo Emerson penned the phrase, "There are a thousand excuses for failure, but there's never a good reason". The only time you fail is when you quit. The only time that you stop prospering is when you give up. When the master left, the guy with five and the guy with two, they went to work. The guy with one, he procrastinated. The two, who went to work, gave what they had, and they were rewarded for their effort. The one, who procrastinated, he buried his talent and was judged. It might not be much in the eyes of other men, but it is a great thing in the eyes of God, even if it's to stand at the door and say, "Welcome to his house". I can assure you that there are a lot worse places to welcome others, even if it's to sit in the nursery and rock the babies while others come to church.

You see I consider it a privilege to pastor. But when I made it known that I wanted to pastor, I didn't get a microphone and a pulpit. I told my father that I felt like God wanted me to be in the ministry. And he said, I believe that too, son. And I said, dad, I want to go to work. He said, that's right great: report to the nursery next Sunday. I said, but I've got a sermon idea. He said, think about it while you're working babies. And he left me there for two whole years with women who had been in there 15 and 20 years. And in those two years, I learned not only to love nursery workers, but I learned that happy babies make for happy mamas. And happy mama's make for happy worlds. And you say, what does that do with you as a pastor? You know how much easier it is to preach to a church with happy mamas in it? And I couldn't do that if there weren't faithful servants of God in that nursery over there. After he put me in the nursery, he sent me to the children's ministry. And I thought, all right. I'm going to get to exegete.

I still don't know what that means, but it sounds really spiritual when you say it. I get to exhort, and snort, and breathe fire and brimstone upon these children. And I stayed there ten years. And for eight years, my job was to put up and tear down the puppet curtain. You know you don't get a lot of applause from the puppet closet. You get a lot of blank stares. It was a training ground for Sunday night. But I learned. I learned how pure the heart of a child is for the Kingdom of God. Your kids don't want to come to church just to be entertained. Entertainment is fun. But this world is filled with entertaining places. Your kids want to come to church, because they feel the presence of the Lord here, and they know there this is where they belong.

And then after 12 years of working in that area, I got to go to school. And after school, I got to start preaching. And after preaching, I have now been able to experience on so many levels what it means to be a part of Christ. You cannot lead what you do not understand. And often times, we get so caught up in what we don't have, rather than thanking God for where he's got us, when he's got us, like he's got us, for the reason he's got us. In order to do the work, you must be patient. I recently read a study, and I fully believe what this study had analyzed in the people that it had watched. It looked at individuals, who were considered to be the best in their field. And when it went through their resumes and their track records of how they got to being the best in the medicine practice, and how they got to be the best in the musical practice, and how they got to be the best in their given areas of expertise, it came down with this analysis: that it takes anywhere from seven to ten years to achieve mastery.

You have to practice something for seven to ten years before you are able to call yourself fully capable. And then after that period of time, the process of perfecting the technique begins. I recently heard a pastor preach a sermon, who was 80 years old. And he was asked the question following his sermon that said, what advice do you give to other young ministers? And he said, don't ever quit going to school. He said, I'm 80, and I've learned something today. It's time to go to work. It's time for us to realize what we are and what God expects us to be: and that be willing to diligently and purposely put forth the effort of becoming what God wants us to become. If you were like the stock exchange, and you were publicly traded, you were someone who was trying to convince others to invest in your future, is the story you're telling now worth investing in? Is the potential and the growth you're speaking about something that someone else would want to be a part of? Or would they look forward to just getting back out what they put in, so that there wouldn't be any losses?

You see work requires commitment. And commitment means that you won't quit when you fail: that you won't give up, you'll never let the goal or the dream that is in your eyes die. Because success isn't given to anyone: it is earned by all who claim it. Success is pursued with effort, and with energy, and with sweat, and sometimes tears, and in all seasons, prayer. Success is necessary if you're going to overcome obstacles and struggles. And what would success be if there were no obstacles and struggles? How much would we take success for granted if it didn't cost us something to obtain it? If it was easy, we wouldn't enjoy it. And if we didn't enjoy it, we would ignore it. And if we ignore it, we will lose it. But obstacles are meant to be overcome. And fear is meant to be conquered. And success is meant to be achieved. And the only thing that is required for you to be successful, child of God, is for you to be willing to work with what God has given you.

Your greatest asset is your willingness to try. And your greatest liability is your ability to quit. It's time to go to work. I don't care how many talents you have or don't have. All of it was given by God. And when he returns, he'll settle the accounts. Sitting where you are tonight, knowing that some day you'll see his face, I charge you with this commission: go to work. Let God use you. And in being used, turn the world upside down. I close with this. When I was a child, my father was very consistent. To this day, he's very consistent. I can tell you what time of day it is by what behavior he's engaging in. 7 o'clock, the garage door's going up. He's coming to work: 8:30, breakfast: 8:30 to 11:30, the to-do list. Every day, pastor has a to-do list. And from 8:30 to 11:00, that to-do list, don't get in it way. 11:30, lunch: 1 o'clock, study: 4:30, home.

When I was a child, and I'd get home from school, every day between 5:30 and 6:00, dad would come through the back door. And there was always one of two reactions, both on extreme ends of the pendulum. I would hear the same sound. And for whatever reason, on different days, it had a different impact on me. The garage door would go up, and I would say, yay, dad's home! We'd go out and play ball. We'd shoot baskets. We'd do something, because he was here and the fun could begin. Or the garage door would go up, I'm so tired. I think I want to go to sleep. Because at some point in my day, I had engaged in behavior, I'm not going to claim it was a fault of my own, but it's hereditary. I come from a long line of mischief.

I would do something that would cause my mother to say, "Just wait until". You might have heard this line, too, "Your father gets..." the funny thing was he came at the same time, he came in the same way, he came to the same house, and I was the same kid. But on days when I was in right standing with the father, it was, "Dad's home"! And on days when I was in contrary to the father's will, it was, "Oh Jesus, rapture me now". Like Enoch, "Let me walk with thee". Not because I was any less a son, not because I any less belonged, but through my own behavior, I had created a separation where there needed to be an intimacy. You see the thing about this parable is not who has the talents and who doesn't. The thing about this parable is that the master is coming back. And when you hear his voice, I don't want you to run and hide. I want you, with open arms, to say, I've been waiting so long to see you. It's time to go to work.

Can we stand in the presence of the Lord? You're in this place tonight, and you know there's a difference between where you are and where you should be. And tonight at this altar, you want to make a change in your commitments, in your priorities. You want a change in your perspective. You want a change in the way you've behaved, so that you can become what God wants you to be. I'm not asking you to come because you feel it's the right thing to do. I'm asking you to come, because it's the thing that you're going to do. Don't let this be another moment of words at an altar. Let this be a moment when everything changes. If you know you need that change tonight, and you're willing to make it, I want you to start walking this way. Start walking this way. I want everyone in this place to lift their hands and repeat this prayer with me.

Lord Jesus Christ, tonight at this altar in this sanctuary, I commit my life and all that is in it to you, to your will, to your purpose, and to your plan. Tonight where you lead, I'll follow. Tonight, where you send, I'll go. Tonight, in spite of the struggles that are before me. Or the pain that is behind me, I will overcome the obstacle. I will press through the fear. I will let go of failure. And I will do the work. I will do all that you require of me, from this moment forward: that I may indeed be pleasing in your sight and for your purpose. Now Father, I thank you. I thank you for my salvation. I thank you for all that it has brought me. And I thank you for what you have for me in the future, in Jesus' name. Amen.

Come on and give the Lord a handclap of praise. Come on and give the Lord a handclap of praise. Now listen to me. Let those words be etched upon your heart and in your mind, no turning back. It's not even a thought. You might not know how you can go forward, but you know you're not going back. As long as you are willing to press on, God will pull you through. And church, it's time to go to work. Lift your hand for the blessing.

Father, bless us, and keep us, and make your face to shine upon us. Be gracious unto us and give us your peace. As we pursue your plan and purpose, as we are willing to do the work of your kingdom, pour out your blessing upon those who are indeed pursuing you. Reward them that diligently seek you. Answer those who ask. And open the way for those who knock. Give blessings upon blessings and favor upon favor. And let the goodness of God be poured out in the land of the living for those who are willing, faithful, and obedient to your word. In Jesus' name, we pray. And all of God's children said, amen.

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