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Watch 2022 online sermons » Steven Furtick » Steven Furtick - You Are Not Your Issue

Steven Furtick - You Are Not Your Issue

Steven Furtick - You Are Not Your Issue

I grew up in a time of ministry where people taught that you had to show God your faith, and if you showed them anything other than your faith… You know, when you pray, you have to say, "Lord, I enter your gates with thanksgiving, and I enter your courts with praise…" But sometimes that left me standing outside the gate for like six days out of seven during the week because I didn't feel thankful, and I didn't feel "praisy". In this situation… I know the Bible says you should not doubt in your heart, and if you're a double-minded man unstable in all he does, you're like tossed and driven with the wind and love not the man and you should not receive anything from the Lord because he's double-minded and all that. I know the Bible, y'all, but Jesus didn't penalize the man for his if. "I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief".

Now this man's son is sick, but there's something very healthy that's happening in this passage. This is where the theology meets the therapy. You ready? He separates his faith from his feelings. We are going to have a million different feelings every day of our lives. We are going to go from feeling like… Even in this service today, I don't know how many, but somebody probably thought, "This is the best thing I've ever heard in my life. This is exactly… What's for lunch"? Wasn't even a breath. Wasn't even a comma. It was just in the same sentence. "God helped my un-… We're going to go over to…" What I noticed about the man is that he owned his unbelief, but he did not identify himself with it. I didn't see this when I was 28 and preaching this text. All I saw was the boy foaming and gnawing, and I thought this was all about demons and evil.

I missed the point because I was so hung up on the word if, and I was trying to eliminate the if, and I was trying to eliminate the insecurity. I was trying to eliminate the doubt. I was like, "If I could just get this out of my life, I could just be a better person". I was still trying to qualify myself rather than understanding that I was created for what God will qualify me for, and if I'm available, my ability will never be the issue. This is so good. He said, "It has often thrown him into fire or water to kill him, but if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us". If. If. If. The Lord told me to look at the other two-letter word in verse 22. He said, "It". "It has often thrown him". Look how this father sees his son. He knows that it is not him. That's why it drives you crazy when your disciples (or kids) are doing something that you know is so driven by their amygdala, but you know, "If I can keep you… Because I know you. I've seen you, and this is not you". "This is an it".

Your kids may not be foaming at the mouth, and that's fine. Don't get distracted by the dynamics. Don't think this is about a demon possession This is about everybody's it. I could elaborate on that, but let me just say this: Everybody has an it. It has thrown him into the fire. It has thrown him into the water. "No, Pastor, I don't have anything like that now. I never just went… Just jumped in the swimming pool. I do have good sense. I'm not going in there with the alligators, and I don't touch fire, man. I know better than that". But you're drowning in debt. It. You complain… I'm preaching to myself right now, not you; don't take it hard. See? everybody else's it is something you can see, but your it? Help me, Holy Ghost. Help me. Help me, Lord. Your it is hidden because you think it's you. But you are God's workmanship. You are a new creation. You are not a body; you are a spirit in a body. You understand what I'm saying?

So it is not you, and you are not it. You are not it. "Naw, the Devil made me do it". How many times have we used that excuse? "The Devil took my joy". "The Devil gave me a flat tire". No, that was a nail, and you knew the tire pressure was low, and it was a construction site anyway, and you weren't paying attention. "The Devil made me late". No, you hit snooze seven times. I'm not talking about blaming the Devil for decisions that we should make ourselves I'm just saying that even at the root of what you did… We get so distracted by the behavior: foaming at the teeth, becoming rigid. But what has it robbed you of? God, this is heavy, man, because it takes from you. It takes from you. I'm talking to every person who has been in a battle with depression. You are not it. It might be throwing you around right now. Because you get happy for a minute, and then you're like, "God, I can't even hold happy for five minutes. I guess I'm just depressed. I guess I'm just…"

It said that it for this boy, the spirit, tried to drown him. It tried to throw him in the fire. He could have had no way of knowing that his healing was the last thing that Jesus would do before he headed to Jerusalem to give his life for our sin. When you identify yourself with it, whether it's your gift and your good stuff, you end up like… I read about one Olympic athlete. A guy. Michael something…Phelps, 28 gold medals. I Googled him the other day to try to find out how many gold medals, and they pulled up an article about Michael Phelps, the most decorated Olympic athlete. Are you watching the Olympics? I can't watch water polo; that gives me heart palpitations, watching people tread water for that. But the headline said from 2018, "I didn't want to be a part of the sport. I didn't want to live". That's how he would feel after he did it. It. It. It. He said, "I could compartmentalize. I could do it. But deep down, I never dealt with me. I have a gift. I got more gold medals than letters in the alphabet, and I didn't want to live, because I started to think I was an it".

Jesus never called the boy it. He said, "Bring him to me". Are you thankful that when he sees you, he doesn't see what you did? People do. "Oh, she gained a little bit there in quarantine". That's how they identify you. But I'm not this. I can lose this, gain this, put it on, take it off. I'm not this, that, or the other that you can see or count or weigh or measure. No, no, no. I am a spirit, and my spirit testifies with God's Spirit that I am his child. The dad said, "I know my boy, and this is not him". And Jesus said, "How long has he been like this"? Now I asked God, "What do I tell them after I've told them that they are not it, that they are chosen by you and used by you, that they have to include you, and they can't get out there in their own power, and that's why they've been tired, and that's why they've been dying, and that's why there's no life detached from the vine…"? Because you started to think that you were the vine, but you're just the branch. You are not it. You started to think that you were the sin, but you are not the sin.

We are so sin conscious in church that we can name everything that's wrong with us and not name anything that God has done for us. If your instinct is to identify with it… Jesus said, "Bring him to me. Bring him to me". The father said, "I believe; help my unbelief". Jesus said, "Bring that to me too". That's not you; that's it. Your doubt is not you; your doubt is it. You can overcome that with his help. All things are possible to him who believes. Jesus said, "How long has he been like this"? The father said, "He's been like this so long that all I've got left is an if". God said to tell you that you won't always be this way. What has been taken from you can be restored to you. What has been snatched from you… The man said he robbed his ability to speak. He can't hear, so he can't speak. You know, the Enemy loves to do that. He loves to get it where you can't hear God. You can't hear truth. You can't hear beauty. You can't hear peace. You can't hear it anymore. So now that you can't speak, you can't do it.

Every time you go to it, it throws you in the fire and water. You push the people away who could help you, but the Lord said it's not always going to be like this, because you are not it. Any it that you will bring into the presence of Jesus… I'm not talking about bringing it to church. You can bring it to church, put it in your purse, and chew it with chewing gum, and you won't get better. But if you will bring it to Jesus… The man said, "I brought my boy to you," and Jesus said, "You haven't brought him to me yet. You brought him to my boys. Bring it to me, but make sure you bring the boy, not just the issue". Now what we've been doing in church so long is we keep bringing God issues that we want him to fix. Y'all are so quiet; I know I'm preaching good. I got you pinned. I know. Sometimes I think of myself like some kind of machine. It. Men are the most dysfunctional. If we want to compliment another man, we say he's a beast; he's an it. The Lord said, "Bring me your boy". Whatever your it is today, I see God separating it out. For you to understand that you are not it… Yes, he chose you. He wants you. And before He created you, he created what he wanted you to do, so in that sense, you're it.

One time I told Holly, "I don't think I'm the right pastor for this church". We were three or four years into the ministry, trying to have a date night at Firebirds. I was mad at every staff member. I couldn't fire any of them because I didn't have any better options. I would have if I could have, but I couldn't, so I said I might just fire me. If all the players suck, fire the coach, right? I said, "I don't think I'm it. I don't think I'm meant…" She said… This is how Holly can just cut through with a sentence. She said, "You're the one we got". Now, Graham… You watching this, boy? I'm the one you got. This is not CarMax. This is not This is not a selection process; I'm the one God gave you. And even this imperfect dad said, "I have a lot of unbelief, but deeper down, I do believe". And see, deeper down, there is an anointing. Deeper down, there is knowledge. Deeper down, there is wisdom. But you have let it take over you.

Jesus spoke to it to free him. I want to thank God today that even when I feel unbelief… It's no secret to me what people are going home to. I'm not stupid, y'all. I know everybody isn't leaving here to cross stitch and crochet a visual of my sermon from today. But the Bible says that he looked at that boy whose body was as good as dead and took him by the hand and helped him up. In my prayer time today, I saw God separating you from it. Because honestly, the depression has been talking, and the anxiety has been talking, and the fear has been talking so loud. We talk about these spirits that we can see, and he shook and convulsed and shrieked, but what about the ones that throw you around? What about the spirit of fear that's been throwing you around? You can't even speak up anymore. Things that you used to be able to do easily. Things that you see others do easily. And it's a spirit, but it's not you. There's a greater spirit. "Greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world". "It is by grace you are saved through faith".

You are not it, and the Devil has been telling you that one way, and you've been hearing it. "You're not it. You're not a good dad". "You're not fit for this". "You're not experienced". You're not it; look at you". "You're not it. Look at them. They're it; you're not it". So here's what we're going to do all week long. We're going to agree with him to a point. Okay? I'm not it. There is a Savior. I'm not it. There is a power that is greater than all sin and shame, and I'm not it. There is a righteousness that comes from God by faith, and I'm not it. But let me tell you something, Devil, you accuser of the brethren. At the same time you're pointing your finger at my inadequacy and my shortage and my lack of knowledge… At the same time that you're dragging out my mistakes from three years ago, or three months ago, or three minutes ago, and throwing them in my face, you need to understand something: "He became sin who knew no sin that I might become the righteousness of God".

God, I pray for restoration of your understanding of righteousness. I am the righteousness of God. I am a child of God. I'm a son. I'm not it. I'm his workmanship. You are not your sin. You are not your fear. I command insecurity, get out, in the name of Jesus.

Step aside. The glory of the Lord is in this place. The king is here. You gotta go. I'm not it.
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