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Watch 2022 online sermons » Steven Furtick » Steven Furtick - Making Room To Receive The Blessing

Steven Furtick - Making Room To Receive The Blessing


Steven Furtick - Making Room To Receive The Blessing

This is an excerpt from: Beta Blessings

How many of y'all have a beta blessing right now…something God is working on, something God is doing, something God is perfecting, something God is establishing, something he's completing, something he's revealing, something he's reviving? You've got it. I've got it in beta. I already know Alpha. I know who started it. I already know Omega. I know who's going to finish it. But watch me right now praise God in the beta stage. Work the bugs out. Get the bitterness out. Get the unbelief out. Get it out so that you will have room to receive it. It's just in beta. It's just in between. Are you blessed? "Yeah. It's in beta". It doesn't look like you're blessed. It doesn't look like a blessing. Some of the things that turn out to be the biggest blessings when they're in beta are the buggiest. How many of y'all ever bought a boat? It was a blessing for a minute, wasn't it?

Back when I was little we had a subscription service for music called…not Spotify…Columbia House. All my Wheel of Fortune, Columbia House saints, shout unto God with a voice of oldness. They would sell you 12 CDs for a penny. That's practically free. I heard the Israelites in Egypt talking about, "We had fish for free in Egypt". (Numbers 11:5) Yeah, and we also got beaten half to death in Egypt. It was free at first. You've already heard the masterful speech "Free at Last," but free at first. Those are the things that come into your life looking like a blessing, but they're not. You would send off this little card. Little did you know when you were sending off that card it was the first step toward a collection agency.

I had a collection agency on my back at age 13. Twelve CDs for free. And they were free… at first. But then there was the selection of the month. It was a negative billing kind of situation, where if you didn't send back this card, automatically here comes to your mailbox not the CDs you wanted… You'd go to your mailbox. "What's this"? You'd open it up. "It's Michael Bolton. I didn't want Michael Bolton". It was free at first. The Michael Bolton CD is $25. You go to your mailbox, open up the package, and they sent you Ace of Base. Like, "No! I wanted Motorhead Ace of Spades. This is Ace of Base".

It was terrible, but it was free at first. Then they keep sending you stuff you didn't ask for. It was free at first. I don't mean to get up in your fornication. It was free at first. I don't mean to get up in the things you do that are free at first. It could be a lot of things. Let's not just get on the sex stuff. I could talk about manipulation. Y'all like me saying fornication better than manipulation, because everybody in this room has tried to manipulate what God gave you at one point in time. It works at first until you're looking down at Spice Girls, wondering, "How am I going to pay for this"?

The fish were free at first. They said, "Fish in Egypt". My mind is really weird, so I get on a theme and I just stay there until I almost wear it out to death. The fish in Egypt is what they wanted to go back to. That's the same thing from the twelve tribes of Israel as the twelve disciples. I want to show you this continuity to show you a beta blessing. Do you remember when Peter in Luke 5 was fishing all night and caught nothing? That was a really frustrating thing, but his lack of success was actually a blessing because it set the stage for him to meet Jesus. At that exact moment, he's putting the boat up.

I know a lot of us have failed at things. I have. You have. It's hard to see those things as a blessing when they're in beta. While he's washing his nets and cleaning out all of the particles that would rot the nets so he couldn't use them again, the Lord goes and preaches in his boat and calls him to be a disciple. You want to talk about a blessing. They went from empty nets to sinking boats. For some of you, this is going to be a year of boat-sinking blessings. Do you receive that?

Some of those blessings will not come in the form of material possessions, although if you need that, may God do it for you. Some of those blessings will come in the form of things that no material possession can be exchanged for. It is going to be a year for some of us… I declare this over your life with no trace of sarcasm or manipulation. This is going to be a year of boat-sinking blessings in your life. Do you know how they're going to come? Not when you pray for a blessing but when you obey. What took the nets from being empty to being so full they couldn't even stand the catch was when Peter said in verse 5, "We've worked hard all night. This isn't working, but because you say so…" Pray to be blessed. Fine. Pray about it, but obey to be blessed.

So, beta blessing works better obey to be blessed. Not "I'll obey this when you bless me, Lord". Not "If you bless me, Lord". No. Just because it's the right thing, just because it's who I want to be, just because it's what I'm supposed to do, not because of something external. This is who I am. That's why I'm kind. That's why I'm going after it. That's why I'm still doing it. That's why I'm still serving: out of obedience. This is so awesome, because they went from empty nets to boat-sinking blessings. The question is…Will you have room to receive it? Peter didn't. He needed another boat. He needed more room to receive.

When the boats were so full of fish they couldn't hold them, he had to signal his partner. For this stage of your life, you are not going to be able to stay in isolation. I know you used to do that. You did that to survive. That's how you did it. You were a fighter, and you kept people off of you. You did that, but that is going to prohibit you from receiving in this season. You have to signal the other boat. There's so much to it. They haul in all of these fish. What a blessing. Then the craziest part of the text. When they caught the fish, they saw Jesus for who he was. When they caught the fish, he gave them a calling. They tried to push Jesus away. Peter said, "I'm a sinful man". Look at Luke 5:8. "I'm a sinful man". "No, you're not a bad man. You're just in beta. I have a plan for you. I have a work to do in you".

You're just in beta. Don't give up on yourself. You're just in beta. I know you're buggy and whiny. I'm just in beta. He's the Alpha and the Omega, and I'm in beta, and I'm blessed. Now, what I saw next challenged everything I thought I knew about the Bible. I thought Jesus blessed them to catch the fish. Then what happened in verse 10… They were astonished by the catch of fish, and so were the partners. He said, "Don't be afraid; from now on you will fish for people". Verse 11 got me. "They pulled up their boats and left everything," the blessing they just had. I read it, and the Lord said, "That's because the fish wasn't the blessing". That wasn't the blessing; that was the bait.

See, that miracle Jesus gave them wasn't the blessing; that was the bait. I'm not talking about beta; I'm talking about bait. I said, "What do you mean"? It was like I was having this conversation with the Holy Spirit. Not out loud, but just thinking about it, trying to go deeper in it. How did they leave the blessing they just had, and how can we do that? How can things be moving around in our lives and it seems like good things are going away, and how can I be okay with that? How can I move forward in that? How can I do it?

See, the catch of fish was just what God used to get them to their calling. It wasn't really the blessing. It was just the bait. The manna was just the means to get them to Canaan. That's all it was. It was just the beta, the bait. It was the bait God used. Like, when I went to college, I got a scholarship. Not a full scholarship, but enough scholarship that God gave me to get there. I thought that was a blessing, and it was, but it wasn't just a blessing; it was bait, because when I got to college, I went to BSU, which is the Baptist Student Union, and they asked me to be the greeter on the team. I thought that was good. I have a good personality. What a blessing that they want me to be a greeter. And it was, but it was also the bait.

Another person on the greeter team… Her name was Holly Boitnott. The artist formerly known as Holly Boitnott. When I met Holly Boitnott, I figured, "What a blessing to be on the welcome team of BSU with Holly Boitnott". But that wasn't really the blessing; that was just the bait, because then they asked me to be the leader of a summer ministry impact team that would go across the state of South Carolina to preach to people. I thought, "What a blessing. I'm the only freshman Mayson Easterling ever asked to do this. What a blessing that I get to do it". But that wasn't even the blessing; that was the bait, because he also said I get to pick my team members, so I circled back to the welcome committee.

I promise you God knows how to get you where he wants you to go. I want you to know the thing you thought was the blessing wasn't even it. That wasn't even all. That was just the beginning. "I am the Alpha and the Omega". That's just the bait. That's just the beta. You haven't seen your best self yet. You haven't seen your risen self yet. This is just the rough draft. There will be a revision. I'm in beta. God said, "Beta blessing". He said, "I have blessings I want to bring to you, so I'm using things as bait to get you in the places where I want you to be. I'm using the things you hate to bring you into the blessings you've prayed for".
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