Mike Novotny - GOD Is Here! Look for His Good Things
There are three words that God used to change my life. Three words so powerful that I wrote a whole book about it, called "3 Words That Will Change Your Life". If you want to get a copy of the book, you can jump over to timeofgrace.org/3Words But for this week I hope you enjoy this series. A couple years ago, I unpacked exactly what those three words were and how they can change your life just like they changed mine. I hope you enjoy this week. God bless you. And we'll talk to you soon.
The other day, I asked my friend, Katie, "Who would be the most exciting, thrilling, emotion-changing, heart-thumping person to walk into this room? To be right here with us"? And Katie, who's a Christian, she leaned in and she whispered, "I'm supposed to say Jesus, right"? But then she paused and said, "Because if someone showed up with food, like if a guy came with sushi... Oh, but wait", she said. "I really love dolphins. Can a guy be riding a dolphin and have sushi in his hand"? I said, "Sure, Katie, a delivery man with sushi can be riding on a dolphin". And you should have seen her face. She was beaming with excitement and joy. Just the thought of that changed her heart.
And, you know, I kind of have the same problem as Katie. I believe in God. I know that Jesus is with me. I know that's the technical right answer. He should give me more peace, more joy, more rest, more happiness than anything else in this world. But, sometimes it's the earthly things that get me heart going as opposed to the presence of God. I wonder if you have that same struggle too. I think a lot of you do, because I've watched some of you during those church services. The times when the pastor stands up in front and he looks at you and he says, "The Lord be with you". And what do you say back? "And also with you". And your faces look like you're watching the world paint-drying championships. Wait, the Lord is with us? God, the gracious, forgiving, accepting, beautiful Heavenly Father. He is with us? How can we say that with a straight face?
You see, it's crazy to me that Christians can go to a baseball game and catch like a flying sausage from a brat-zooka and take pictures and put it on Instagram. But at the same time hear that God is with us and it doesn't get to our hearts. And that's why my friend, Katie, that's why I, that's why all of us need to eavesdrop on the angels. Way back in the Old Testament, a prophet named Isaiah had this vision where he saw God. Like he realized, better than any of us could, that he was with the presence of God. And the angels shouted, praising and singing and I want to read you the passage that they sang. Now the angels said God is Holy. That's kind of a fancy Bible word that means "wonderfully different". Like God is exalted. God is better than anything in this earth. And they said the whole earth is full of his glory.
So, if you struggle to remember that, that it's not God that's here with a small "g" or just a capital "G", but a big caps-locked GOD. I want you to take the angels' advice and look for the glory of God that fills the whole earth. With every good game that you go to, every good sushi roll that you eat, every time someone walks into the room, anytime anything is beautiful or impressive or creative or relaxing or peaceful or happiness-inducing, I just want you to pause and say, "But God is better than this. And God is more glorious than this. God is more beautiful than this. God is more forgiving than this". Let all the good things in this life trampoline your heart until you say, with the angels, "God is holy, holy, holy". And then when I ask you the question, "Who would be the person that would change your heart, that would give you most joy"? You won't have to say, "Technically, Jesus". You will say with a smile on your face, "GOD. GOD is here". And that means the world to me. So, let's pray.
Dear God, We pray that you would open our eyes to see you today. To listen to all those amazing words in the Bible that we should worship and praise and exalt and adore. That we should acclaim you as Lord. That we should magnify you. That our soul should, should lift you up. God, before we repent of our sins, before we ask you for help, before we say, "Your will be done". I pray that we could start here remembering who you are. That you're the God who knows everything. You're the God who can do anything. There's nothing we're facing that's too big for you. Because you're not a small God. You're GOD. And so we pray for that kind of spiritual vision. We pray that you would help us and we pray that you would be enough for us as we seek you with our whole heart, soul, mind and strength. We pray all this in Jesus' name. Amen.
Where do you see the presence of a big, glorious, thrilling God? What are the things in your life, the people, the places, the experiences that remind you if life on this earth can be good, then the God who made this earth must be great? I'd love for you to encourage each other, to put in the comments section those things that you see in your life that spur your big, beautiful caps lock view of God.