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Watch 2022-2023 online sermons » Steven Furtick » Steven Furtick - Talk Yourself Into It

Steven Furtick - Talk Yourself Into It

Steven Furtick - Talk Yourself Into It

Well, thank you worship team. I want to go into the Word of God today. I spoke to you last week on the subject of confidence and I want to continue along those thoughts. From what I could tell, the sermon helped some people. Not saying it helped everybody. Some of ya'll are beyond help. Naw, I don't really believe that. Uh, it resonated with some people so, in a similar vein today, I want to bring a message of encouragement. Let's look together at Joshua 1. Normally I have you stand for the scripture, but I kinda have a few scriptures today so I thought you could just sit there and I'll read it for you and Joshua 1:6-9. This message that God gave me is a little bit of a practical thing and something that's been helpful in my life. So, I hope that it will be helpful to you.

Very simple message. This is an epic text. I can't speak for the sermon. The sermon may be good it may not be. But, this text is legendary. And we're going into the locker room where God is giving Joshua a halftime talk. He's telling him what he must do and how he is going to do it. Because Joshua has big shoes to fill. And Joshua has a job to do. And Joshua has a purpose to accomplish. And so God is getting his man ready, because how many know that God will never give you a purpose that he will not prepare you for? All of your life, up until this point, the parts that you like, the parts that you didn't like, the parts that you understood, and the parts that you're still trying to understand, you can know this: that they were all preparing you for God's purpose. The moment that you believe that you can really embrace whatever comes into your life, knowing that if God didn't send it, he'll still use it. Anything that comes against you can become a weapon in the hands of God, fighting for you.

So God is telling Joshua in a period of transition for the nation of Israel, that the job is too big for him, but the God who is with them is bigger than the giants that stand before him. In convincing him of this, he tells him in verse 6 of Joshua 1, "Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their ancestors to give them". Do you notice how good my eyesight is? I can read my Bible from all the way back here. How many of you over 45 are extremely jealous right now? I'm gonna employ my good eyesight while I've got it. He said it again, "Be strong and courageous". Well you already said that God, remember in verse 6. "Yeah, but I am saying it again, 'cuz I know how you are, and I know how quickly your courage evaporates".

I wish Brad Straarup were here, he is on staff with our students and he asked me a profound question the other day. He said, "Why is it that no matter how much people encourage me, I can't keep myself encouraged? I'll find some way, if somebody compliments me, to disqualify the compliment, or to cancel it out. I'll tell myself, well their just being nice, they're saying that 'cuz they have to say that. They are just saying that to make me feel good". So maybe there is something to the repetition factor here that God knows, that between verse 6 and verse 7, something happened to make you discouraged. And so, he encourages you again, "Be strong and courageous. Be careful to obey all the law may servant Moses gave you; don't turn from it to the right or the left;" I know there are a lot of things trying to get you off track and get you off course, but don't be distracted. You gotta job to do. I want you to be successful wherever you go. This is God's heart for you.

In order to do it, you gotta "Keep this book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go". You looking for something to write down? Write this down: God's presence is guaranteed, but his promises are optional. I will be with you wherever you go. But, how far you wanna go, is up to you. Even if you don't go into the things that I have prepared for you in your life, I'll be with you. You make your bed in hell, I'll be with you. Belly of the fish, I'll be with you. Hide out from Jezebel in a cave, I'll be with you. Murder an Egyptian and run to the desert, I'll be with you in Midian.

So, the fact that God will be with you, his presence is guaranteed. It is not conditional. But, the way that you experience his promises, well a lot of that is up to you. And so, God mentions to Joshua two things. Can I teach a little bit today? He says, "Don't be afraid, don't be discouraged". Don't be afraid. Don't be discouraged. I was talking to a friend the other day and we were laughing at each other. about how we insert ourselves into Biblical stories and shrink down the magnitude of the stories to fit our situations, which are sometime not that big of a deal. Do you know what I mean? It's like, David killed Goliath and you can lose 15 lbs too. Do you know what I mean? Like Goliath just becomes whatever you need him to be. Right? Goliath can be your student loan. He is no longer this life-threatening, nation-defying giant.

Now, we've got Goliath representing your car payment. You can take him down in the name of the LORD. That's what we do. In the case of, I don't know, I could use a lot of examples, couldn't I? I was talking to a friend the other day and he was negotiating a real-estate contract and he was comparing himself to Moses, and the guy who owned the land, to Pharaoh. And he said, "I feel like Moses going before Pharaoh". And it's just a little 30,000 sq ft building, you know? But, he's now got this construct where, in his mind, he's kinda like put himself in the Biblical story. It's easy to do that with Joshua. So now, God is telling Joshua, "I'm gonna lead you into this land. You're gonna have to lead millions of vagabond, nomadic people who love to complain, and forget what I do for them the moment I do it. So, I want you to go get them ready and go do that, okay? And by the way don't be afraid, don't be discouraged".

And it's easy for us to make the jump because we want to personalize the Bible, and all of a sudden, now instead of taking over the land and leading millions of people, it's just symbolic of whatever we need to do in our lives. So it's like, the apartment we hope we get. or the college we want to get into. So we can shrink it down. But, I think part of that is good. Maybe sometimes I go to far with it, because I have a passion as a preacher to make it personal. I feel like I failed, if all that I did is teach you a history lesson about somebody who lived a long time ago, called Joshua.

So, there is a part of me that wants to make it personal. Perhaps sometimes I take it too far, and we forget the magnitude of the miracles that the Bible illustrates. That Joshua going into the Promised Land wasn't like you asking a girl out on a date. But, we can do that in our desire to personalize the Bible, which I think is a good thing. Well we can miss the point or lose the perspective. And so, I just want to bring it into perspective here that Joshua must have been terrified. You know? I read that scripture. I could feel while I was reading it that you're like, "Yeah, yeah, get over it Joshua. Go do it. Just get up and do it. Just get up and do it. Get up and do it. I gotta defeat the Jebusites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Canaanites, the Cellulites" those most dreadful enemies of all. And God tells him to do something He tells him to do something in the face of all of these enemies that he knows, he must encounter.

God says, "Be strong and courageous". Then, he tells him what not to do, "Do not be afraid, do not be discouraged". Something within me rises to Joshua's defence. I can't help it if I feel afraid. And I can't help it if I feel discouraged. How can you tell me not to feel afraid, God, when all of these battles that I've never fought before waiting in front of me? How can you tell me not to be afraid when I am leading people who have only known the wilderness, into warfare? How can you tell me not to be discouraged when I have to go in under-resourced and maybe overwhelmed? How can you tell me not to feel afraid and not to feel discouraged? But, God didn't say don't feel afraid. And he didn't say don't feel discouraged.

I think the essence of what God wants to say to you is, Just because you feel afraid, doesn't mean you have to be afraid. Just because you feel discouraged, doesn't mean you have to be discouraged. Just because you have fear, doesn't mean fear has to have you. Come on talk to me, somebody. And for most of us, our default setting is fear and discouragement. Our default setting in the situations that are unfamiliar to us is anxiety and discouragement. You see, God has given you a destiny. I want you to believe that even if you can't see it right now. Even if it's not your destiny to lead millions of people into the Promised Land, God has given you a destiny. As a parent, God has given you a destiny. On your job, it's part of your destiny. God has given you a job to do and no, you're not Joshua, but you have a job to do.

I would like for you to repeat after me, the following declaration: I have a destiny. Alright, now I need you to know that the bigger the destiny, the bigger the enemies. That was helpful for me to realize because, in seasons of my life, I was hard on myself, feeling like there was something wrong with me. And it's because God's promises in my life, while they seemed attractive, sometimes aren't so automatic as we think that they should be. In the text that I read to you, God is telling Joshua that the real enemies to your destiny are not the Canaanites. The real enemy of your destiny, are not the Hittites. The real enemies of your destinies are not the Jebuzites. These are all the people that he would face as he moved forward in faith, but God wants Joshua to know that your real enemy is not another person. Your real enemy is not even a situation. Because, if you don't know this, you'll spend your whole life fighting the wrong things.

God says, "Let me tell you what to fight: Fight your fear. Let me tell you what to fight: Fight your discouragement". If you can fight discouragement, you can fulfill your destiny. Imma say it over my shoulder to the left side of the room If you can fight your fear, if you can face your fear, you can move forward into your destiny. This is important for Joshua to know. See because, Joshua has been around a while. By the time that God is calling him, bible background, he has already served under Moses. he served under Moses as a commander. And he won some great battles under Moses, and he did some great things under Moses, but now Moses has left the building. And so, God is talking Joshua into...

Now God is very persuasive, okay? So, when God tries to talk you into something, as we've already seen, he'll use repetition. But, he also knows how to locate the thing that is keeping you from doing what you're called to do. Now the people of God are standing at the edge of something. They are out of Egypt, but they are not yet into Canaan; that's where so many Christians live. I've come out of some things, but I haven't moved into the things. I've made some progress, but I've not fully possessed the promise. I've become aware of God's presence, but I haven't fully accessed his promises. And that's where Joshua stands. And he has been here before, 40 years ago. Moses was in a position to possess the Promised Land, and he sent some spies into the land.

A lot of people don't know this part of the story, you know? I mean, they may have heard a little bit about it, but they don't know the details. The details that kept them from experiencing their destiny. The details that caused 100s of 1,000s of them to die in the desert, looking at promises that they could have possessed. The details that keep you from being the dad that God called you to be, doing the things God called you to do, enjoying the life that Christ himself died to give you. I feel a holy burden on this message, today. Because somebody is looking at a promise that you're not living in. And the reason that you're not living in it has nothing to do with creditors, and it has nothing to do with 7th grade teachers, and it doesn't even have anything to do with what you experienced in your past it is your fear and discouragement.

And so, Joshua goes into the land 40 years ago Remember, he was serving under Moses at this time and he goes into the land and he looks at it and there is 11 other spies. There's Joshua and Caleb and 10 other spies and they go into the land and they look around, they come back and it's interesting. I want to show you this. Can I show you? Look at Numbers 14. The Bible gives a recording of the report that the men brought back. And this is kinda sad to me. It says in Numbers 13:31-32 "The men who had gone up with him said, 'We can't attack those people; they are stronger than we are.' And they spread among the Israelites a bad report about the land they had explored. They said, 'The land we explored devours those living in it. All the people we saw there are of great size".

Let me point out to something to you, that you may miss on the surface, they were being realistic. Most of what they are saying is true. They are bigger, they are stronger, we can't do it on our own. On our own. But Joshua knew something that those spies had forgotten: We're not on our own. We have a promise. We have a promise of God's presence. And, if he is with us, he is more than the world against us. And so, these spies are trying to talk Moses out of the very thing that God brought them here for. These spies are trying to... Let me ask you a question. What have you talked yourself out of that God is trying to bring you into? What are you talking yourself out of, right now, that God is trying to bring you into? In your relationships, what are you talking yourself out of that God is trying to bring you into? In your personal life, I don't care what category you use. We've all got something that we are talking ourselves out of.

The message God gave me today, is that you can talk yourself into it just like you've been talking yourself out of it. You can talk yourself into it. One thing I noticed about myself from an early age, is that I can be persuasive when I need to be. And so, sometimes in school when I would need an extension on a paper I knew I could usually get one, 'cuz I have this way of talking myself out of things. Do you understand? It comes in handy as a preacher to be persuasive 'cuz you have to get people to do things that they need to do that they don't want to do. And so, you are trying to tell people to trust God in their finances and the problem with that is that they already feel broke and so now, if you tell em that they want to trust God with their finances and they need to trust God with their finances and they don't want to trust God with their finances because they don't have any finances, but you want to get them to see that the reason you don't have any finances is because you aren't trusting God in your finances.

If you trust God in your finances, it will open your eyes to the supply that he has available for you. And if you seek him first, and his kingdom and his righteousness, all these things. I am preaching my watch off my wrist. That's how excited I am about the Word of God. Just hold it, Russel, I don't even want it back. I don't even care what time it is. I might preach through lunch. 'Cuz there are some things in your life that you have been talking yourself out of. One time, my senior year of high school, they put me in a AP English class with Eunice Cox Eunice Cox was rumored to be a tough teacher, but it's no problem for me, I got this; 'cuz I got the gift.

And so, I came upon my first book report and I wasn't going to finish it on time. I knew I wouldn't finish it on time, but I wasn't worried about it 'cuz I could talk my way out of it. I've always talked my way out of things; speeding tickets and all kinds of things, I've talked myself out of. Why not this paper, too? But, Eunice Cox was waiting for me at the door and she said, "I notice you didn't turn your assignment in" And I smiled real sweet, 'cuz I got some southern charm, I grew up in a small town. I know how to talk to people. I said, "Miss Cox, I was gonna talk to you about this". And she said, "I don't want to hear it". And she said, "Steven Furtick, you have met your match in Eunice Cox". I said, "But, Miss Cox..." She said, "No"! I said, "But I was gonna..." "No"! And I said, "Well, what can I do"? She said, "If I were you, I'd try to get a good grade on all the other ones because you get a zero on this one, and you might want to bring up your average".

So now, I want you to understand something when God called Moses, Moses was reluctant to do what God has called him to do. And Moses had a million excuses and so do you; why you can't be it, why you can't do it, why can't go forward in it. Come on. How many of you are good at talking yourself out of things? How many of you, by the time I get done preaching sometimes, and you've even had your lunch, you've forgotten what the sermon is even about? Shame on you! No, I am just kidding. It's how it works. We are so quick to talk ourselves out of things. But, when Moses started telling God, "You know I can't speak and I can't do it. and I am not eloquent and I am not trained and I am not equipped and I am not able". God said to Moses, "You have met your match in Eunice Cox. You have met your match in the LORD your God. Have I not commanded you? I don't even want to hear it out of your mouth why you can't. I am the greater one. I am the power within you. I am the one who calls you by name. I know what you got 'cuz I put it in you. I know what you don't have 'cuz I left it out, and I command you to be courageous".

So, it occurs to me that maybe the reason that God is speaking to Joshua on this level, is because Joshua has seen first hand the devastation that it causes when God's people talk themselves out of what God is trying to bring them into. You know, those spies said to Moses, "We can't do it. They are stronger. They are bigger". And Joshua spoke up and he got everybody's attention. The Bible says in Numbers 14:6, "He tore his clothes and said to the entire Israelite assembly, 'Hey, Come on, guys. The land we passed through and explored is exceedingly good. If the LORD is pleased with us, he will lead us into that land, a land flowing with milk and honey, and will give it to us. Only do not rebel.'" Don't do this. Don't die outside of your destiny. Don't let your fear keep you from your future. Don't be discouraged. Don't rebel.

"If the LORD is pleased, he will lead us into a land that is flowing with milk and honey. He'll give it to us. Only do not rebel against the LORD. And do not be afraid of the people of the land," and stop forfeiting your future for your fear of people. Stop forfeiting your future for your fear of failure. You hear me? Stop forfeiting your future because of what they might think about you. Their protection is gone, but the LORD is with us. I mean you gotta believe down deep in your soul that God is with me in this moment. He is with me when I feel him, he is with me when I don't. He's with me when I am faithful, he is with me when I am faithless. He is with me when I am right, he is with me when I am wrong. He is with me when I am whole, he is with me when I am broken. Somebody shout, "God is with me". Touch your neighbor, say, "He is with you too". He is with you too. But, no matter how hard Joshua tried, he couldn't talk Moses into it. You know why? Because nobody can talk you into your destiny but you.

Touch your neighbor, say, "Talk yourself into it". Talk yourself into it. It is interesting that when God speaks to Joshua he tells him what to do, Lead these people to inherit the land. Now the problem with a lot of us is that we have shrunk our lives down to the size of our own personal interests. We don't have anything bigger than us worth fighting for. So it doesn't take much to discourage us. If I didn't preach every time I don't feel like preaching you would hear from me three times a year. You know how I preach every week? I talk myself into it. And I tell myself, "There is somebody coming to church today who is suicidal. There is somebody coming to church today whose kid is on drugs. There is somebody coming to church today that has been told all their life, their worthless and you get to tell them God loves them. And maybe you could smile at em and make em feel through your countenance, that God has not forgotten them; that he knows them by name." By the time I stop talking to myself, I am ready to talk to you.

Now we can preach. Now we can do it. Now we can go. But see, you've gotta talk yourself into your purpose. I have a purpose. I don't need to ask God to give me a purpose. I have a purpose. You have a purpose; to glorify God, to be transformed into the image of Christ; to be conformed into the image of Christ. It's not that you don't have a purpose It's that every time God tries to bring you into it you talk yourself out of it. And so, he says, this is not just about you, Joshua. There are people depending on you. Your destiny is connected to something much bigger than you. So go do it, and be strong and courageous. But, God is a good coach, and a good coach doesn't just motivate you, he instructs you. And so, he gives him the mechanics. This is what I was excited about. I mean that part, I was excited about that part too. I really wanted to show you this, he said in verse 8, "Keep this book of the Law always on your lips". This stood out to me.

In Deuteronomy 31, I told you I have a lot of scripture today. Isn't that kinda what you came for, though? Okay. Just making sure. In Deuteronomy 31 before Moses died and climbed up on Mount Nebo and he died and God didn't let the Israelites find his body because he knew that if they found his body, they would continue to worship his bones 'cuz sometimes the only way for God to get you to move past something in your life is to completely take it away. But before he died, he called the nation together, he said, "(Clears throat)" And he gave em a little speech, he gave em a little talk, he gave em a little... He said, "I am not going into the land but you are and Joshua is gonna lead you". He pulls Joshua beside him and he tells him, "Be strong and courageous, for you must go with this people into the land the LORD swore to their ancestors to give them, and you must divide it among them as their inheritance". Not, "you may," but "You must". Not, "You should," but, "You must". And you must do it, and as you do it, know that "The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be (discouraged)".

So when God speaks to Joshua after the death of Moses Joshua has heard this speech before. It's not his first time hearing it. But, when God gives the speech, he adds one thing that Moses left out. See Moses told him what to do, told him why to do it. God showed Joshua how. Would you like to know how to keep yourself encouraged Because you need to know, they aren't always going to text you encouragement when you need it; that's part of being a grown Christian. You need to learn to encourage yourself. I gotta tell you touch your neighbor, and say, "I can encourage myself". If you encourage me, I appreciate it. If you're nice to me, I appreciate it. If you say kind things to me, that's cool. But, I need you to know, that even if you don't; if you get to busy, or if you forget about me, or if you don't know what to say to me, I need you to know I can encourage myself.

Greater is he that is in me than he that is in the world. I learned to encourage myself. 'Cuz I can't always count on a text. I can't always count on a hug. I can't always count on a man. I can't always event count on my own friends. But, I can encourage myself. So, God tells Joshua, he says, "I am not always gonna speak to you like this". You know you have moments in your life where God himself will speak to you and there awesome. One time I was coming home to Charlotte, when we were first starting the church and I was nervous and I was afraid and discouraged. I was discouraged because people weren't showing up yet. I was afraid 'cuz I didn't know if they ever would.

And so I was a afraid and discouraged. Those are two states you cannot fulfill your destiny in. Let me show you something, if you are afraid right now it is not because the devil is making you afraid. There is somebody on your row that has more to be afraid of than you and yet, the confession of their life is, I have fear, but fear doesn't have me. If you are discouraged it is not because of your conditions or your circumstances; they may have been a contributing factor, but they are not the deciding factor. Discouragement is the decision that I make. Discouragement is a conversation that I have with myself. Discouragement is that thing inside of me that says, "This is the way it will always be. See, it's not getting any better. See that woman right there doesn't like your sermon; look how she is looking at you. And that guy's asleep".

Discouragement is that little voice inside of your head that you listen to. And our problem, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, the great Welch preacher once said, "Our problem is that we spend too much time listening to ourselves and not enough time talking to ourselves. Now, ya'll are about to think I am crazy. But, I talk to myself all the time. How many of you talk to yourself all the time. Well sure you do. You've been doing it since you were three. (Mumbling) But somewhere along the way, between putting together Legos "and the big one goes here and the little one goes here," and you talk yourself through it, now somewhere along the way you turned against yourself. And so now you're listening to yourself like the psalmist did. He was having a bad day. And so he started talking about the day he was having. And he said in Psalm 42:4, he said, "These things I remember as I pour out my soul: how I used to go to the house of God under the protection of the Mighty One, shouts of joy".

You know right before this he said, "My tears have been my food day and night". And he is in this cycle. But he did something in verse 5. It's kind of a strange technique. And if you do this, people might think that you are crazy. But if you don't do it, you really will be crazy. So you can decide: whether you want people to think you are crazy, or whether you really want to be crazy. 'Cuz, he has been listening to himself for four verses. He has been listening to his tears. He has been listening to his trials. He has been listening to his past But in verse 5, he totally shifts. And instead of listening to himself, he starts preaching to himself. It's very powerful. "Why, my soul, are you so downcast"? Did you see the ship. He is like, "I am done with this".

If I wake up in the morning and ask myself how you feel, Imma be 50/50 at best. So, Imma wake up in the morning and tell myself, this will change your life, and tell myself, "Today we are gonna be blessed. Today we're going be favored. Today we are going to be a blessing. Today we're gonna take new ground. Today we're gonna encourage somebody else. Today we're gonna see the goodness of the glory of the LORD in the land of the living. Today! "Why are you so downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed in me"? And then he does something very powerful, he puts himself in his place. "Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him".

Sometimes you gotta put yourself in your place. Sometimes you gotta make discouragement bow it's knee in the presence of God; and fear must bow to faith, in the presence of God. Somebody give him a praise right now. Hey, Joshua, here is how you do it: "Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips;" There is a land I am taking you to, there is a promise that I am leading you to, but, you're gonna have to talking yourself into it. Meditate on the Law day and night. The Law was five books of the Bible that we have now: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy. Tora. It was the Bible that Joshua had. God said, "Your life will follow the direction of your conversation. Your courage comes from your conversation, so does your fear, so does your discouragement; not just your conversations with others, but your conversation with yourself".

So keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; not just in your mind, on your lips. The Hebrew word for meditate is Hagah and it means to mutter. Because there was a Hebrew tradition, that while they studied the text and reflected upon it, they would mutter. Mutter See, it's not enough to read the Bible, you have to rehearse the Bible. Come on Gaston Campus. It is not enough for you to hear this word, it is not enough for you to listen to me speak, if you are going to live in that place... What place? I am not going to the land of Canaan. No, but God has promised you his peace. If you are going to have his peace in your life, you're going to have to talking yourself into peace. God has given you his courage. If you're going to live in courage and fulfill your purpose, you're gonna have to talk yourself into your purpose. Keep it on your lips.

So what you need, and I am gonna get very practical now 'cuz what good is all this screaming and shouting, if the moment it leaves my lips, it leaves your heart? The way that you keep it, is you need a phrase to fight with. You hear me? Your mind is always going to be murmuring and muttering. Have you noticed that? Okay? It's always going to be doing it. So, what you want to do, is take control of the conversation by the Spirit of God. And the way you do that, you need a phrase to fight the devil with. Here is my current phrase to fight the devil with, This is how I fight fear, 'cuz I have a lot of fear. I know I am not supposed to. I know I am the pastor of the church, but I get scared sometimes; scared of big stuff and scared of stupid stuff. But, I have learned that if I am in a state of fear the reason I am there is because I talk myself into it and if I talked myself into, then I can talk myself out of it.

There are really only two fears, they all fall under these categorize; its the fear of falling short and the fear of running out. Any fear you have in your life falls into one of those two categorize. If you are scared to lose a relationship it is because you're afraid of falling short in someones eyes or you're afraid of running out of love; and if their not there you won't have love. Every fear that you've ever had in your life falls under those two categorize: fear that I will fall short or that I will not be enough and fear that I will run out, that I will not have enough. So since I know that the key to me persevering in courage and in strength and in purpose is to fight back. Somebody say, "Fight back". You are not going to take the land automatically and you are not going to live in peace and purpose automatically.

So I've got a phrase that I do; and it's four syllables on the front and it's four syllables on the back. And I did it in four 'cuz you can breathe in four times and breathe out four times. So I do it all the time. And the devil doesn't like it, he really really hates it. So I am doing it more and more, 'cuz I like to make him mad. and I like to fight back, I like to let him know that he can't just push me around and keep me stuck in the wilderness and he's not gonna have my destiny and he's not gonna disrupt God's dream for my life with discouragement, and anytime he roles up on me and tries to make my soul downcast, I got something for him, 'cuz it's trained my fingers for war and my hands for battle and he will not keep me out of the land God's promised. He will not keep me out of the purpose.

I am gonna raise my kids to love God. I am going to serve God in my generation. I am gonna complete the calling that God has placed on my life. I am gonna go forward in Jesus' name. I am gonna build the kingdom on earth as it is in heaven. I am going to see it come to pass. So I just do this, I say, Christ is in me, that's the first half. I am enough. Why don't you try it. You know if you are sitting at a restaurant and somebody says, "Here taste this, taste this, taste this. You try it". Say, "Christ is in me, I am enough". Tell it to your neighbor. Tell em, "Christ is in you. You are enough". I love people who absolutely refuse to participate with anything you do in church. Do they have a secret meeting before church? Where does this happen in the lobby? When he says, "Touch your neighbor". do nothing. It's okay, it's okay. Let's go for 97% participation, okay? I think we are about 80%. Touch your neighbor, say, "Christ is in you. You are enough".

Now you gotta get it in that order, 'cuz if you start with "You are enough," it's just a matter of time before you find out that is just not true. They're stronger than we are. Yeah but didn't you hear the verse, devil. Christ is in me. I am enough. Let's take the volume up a little bit. Christ is in me. I am enough. Think about that fear that you have, look at it and say, Christ is in me I am enough. Think about what was discouraging you last night, robbing you of your sleep, robbing you of your joy, robbing you of your peace, robbing you of your purpose, and shout it out loud. Say, "Christ is in me. I am enough".

Now, break it down. If you walk around shouting like that it's gonna cause some trouble for you at your job. So God tells Joshua, he says, "Keep it on your lips, as the background, as the soundtrack and take it into any situation that you face". I love it, because God at once, gives him a big destiny. How many of you believe that God has a destiny for you? How many of you want to believe that God has a destiny for you? It's kinda hard sometimes, 'cuz I thought I'd be there by now and I am not there by now. Well, he gives him a big destiny, but he gives him a small direction. He said, "For you to fulfill your destiny, you're gonna have to talk yourself into it."

So I was flying into Charlotte... You can stand I am closing. I was flying into Charlotte one time... Did you get blessed by this word at all today? I was flying into Charlotte one time and I started to tell you this story, how I was discouraged and afraid. And while we were landing, I open my window and I remember it real clearly, 'cuz the guy next to me had been sleeping and he was kinda mad when I opened the window. But, I opened the window and looked out and it was the perfect setting, like the sun was setting and, remember I was afraid and discouraged, and I am not comparing myself to Joshua. I don't have some kind of grandiose idea of what God put me on the earth to do, but for my calling, for my part to play in the kingdom, I take it very seriously. And I believe that God has given me a promise and I believe that God has given me a purpose. And I believe that he desires me to live in peace as I fulfill that purpose and possess that promise.

So, as we were landing, and it was like a scene out of Thomas Kinkade, you know what I am saying? Like, do you know that guy? The guy who paints all the stuff. It was like the city of Charlotte was bathed in the orange sunset; and orange was our church color and it's also the color of God's team, the Clemson Tigers And so, these two things served to confirm to me that God was speaking. I just felt something. I got my notebook out that I had and I just wrote down, just as fast as I could write, the impressions that I was receiving as we were landing in Charlotte. And it started with this idea, "This is your city. I have given it to you for influence". Not that it isn't other people's city too, but just that God had called me here. You made the right decision. You did it. And I wanna give.. And it was about a page and a half of stuff that I wrote down and a couple days later I read it to our team. It was very encouraging, very inspiring.

The reason I told you that story is because, I have landed in Charlotte many times since then. Almost every time I am landing I open my window just in case that could happen again. And you know what, it's never happened like that again, ever. Ever. I mean, I have even put my notebook out and gotten my pen ready. And what I see is buildings. But see, you can't live in a place where you're depending on God to always give you a sunset and a poem. And the sense I get from the LORD is, I've already spoken my promise to you, now you've got to speak it to yourself. There are some promises in your life that you have not yet possessed; and you are waiting on somebody or you're waiting on God, or you're waiting on a circumstance to align. It's not going to happen that way. If you are going to experience the peace of God, it won't be because God gives it to you; he's already given you peace.

In John 14:27 when Jesus, like Moses, was preparing his followers for his departure and telling them about the Holy Spirit that was coming; not only to live with them, but to live in them. God told Joshua, "I am with you". But God tells you something even better. He says, "I am in you". Christ is in me. And I am more than enough. And he tells his followers, "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I don't give like the world gives. Don't let your hearts be troubled. Don't let them be afraid". Do you see it? Don't let your heart be troubled. Don't let it be afraid. Why are you so downcast. Stop listening to your situation and start preaching to your situation. In the name of the LORD, dry bones will live. In the name of the LORD, the promise will come to pass. So Jesus said, "I have given you my peace. Now talk yourself into it".

Day and night. The refrain of my heart. You need a phrase to fight the devil with. I am not afraid anymore. I feel fear but I am not afraid. He didn't say I couldn't feel it. He just said that I had to face it. He didn't say that the fear wouldn't come upon me he just said that it shoudn't define me. Come on, I am preaching to somebody. You've been stuck. You've been afraid. You've been terrified. You've been worried about it. You've been stressed. But, lift your hands in the presence of the LORD. and say, "Christ is in me, I am enough". Say it again. Christ is in me. I am enough. One more time. God said it three times to Joshua, I want you to say it three times too. Christ is in me. I am enough.

Now clap your hands and thank God. Clap your hands and praise God. Open your mouth and speak praise; speak peace. I will yet praise him, My LORD and my God. Well, you've heard the word, now it's time to live it. This is that little time where I take a moment to address you just right after the sermon, just one thought that you can carry with you through the week. And I think this week, it is pretty obvious what we need to do to put it into practice We need to keep The Word on our lips. The conversation in our minds. Yes, the conversations we have with others, but especially the conversations that we have with ourselves You know a sermon only works if you work it. The Word only works if you work it. So maybe you take that confession that I gave you, which is: Christ is in me, I am enough. Christ is in me, I am enough. You write that down, or perhaps you just... It's pretty simple to remember. You just say it to yourself in those situations where you feel pressured, squeezed, tempted, overwhelmed. Christ is in me, I am enough. Christ is in me, I am enough.

I like it because you can breathe in: Christ is in me, I am enough. Breathe in his presence, and breathe out his peace. Maybe you want to find your own declaration this week. A word from God. You know you can take a great scripture like: God has not given me a spirit of fear, God has not given me a spirit of fear. Or, God shall supply all my needs. You know there's a million ways to do it, just make sure that it's personal, powerful, and specific to your situation. Then, you can just take it with you all week long. Keep it on your lips. So, you've heard the word, now it's time to rehearse the word. I pray it will be a blessing in your life.
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  1. Lourdes ortiz
    10 January 2018 16:52
    + 0 -
    I needed this and I know that others need to thus also. Thank you
    21 January 2020 09:48
    + +1 -
    Thank you for this word it was meant for me.I am always talking myself out of my purpose but after hearing this word on u tube and reading it again I have learnt to talk myself into the positive things of God.I know that i will not enter alone but the Lord will go before me and he will walk beside me because he has promised never to leave nor forsake me.His words will always be on my lips and i Know his words will not return void,it will return after its purpose has been fufilled.