Steven Furtick - Tune Your Heart To Truth
Some trust in chariots, some trust in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God. Father, in every season and situation our strategy is the same: to surrender to you and to sing to you, to sing a "Hallelujah" from a heart that knows that you did it before and you're going to do it again. Hallelujah! In Jesus' name.
Chris, your voice sounded like honey on a buttered biscuit today. A big ol' fluffy biscuit. Give me some of those multivitamins. Beautiful. What a beautiful time of worship. Thank the Lord. How many are grateful that he gave you another day to sing his praises with your borrowed breath? Everybody joining us online, we welcome you. This church is glad you're here. We're excited. We connect with you right now by means of the Holy Spirit and Internet access or cable television, whatever the case may be. Wherever you are, whatever you need, God is here, and he's got it. Do you need grace? He's got it. Do you need healing for a broken heart? He's got it. Do you need wisdom for what to do this Wednesday in that meeting? He's got it. We are so excited about our Elevation Nights tour coming up. We'd better bring that Holy Ghost fire because it's going to be cold where we're going.
Now listen. These are selling out. I'm going to name the cities and the dates. February 20-29. Hershey, Pennsylvania; Bridgeport, Connecticut; Grand Rapids, Michigan; Columbus, Ohio; Hoffman Estates, Illinois; Belmont Park, New York… Last week I said "Long Island" and somebody got very offended. They said, "Belmont Park is not Long Island. They are different". Okay. I'll find out when I get there. I'm from Moncks Corner. Leave me alone. Boston, Massachusetts; and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Elevationnights.com. Are any of y'all coming? You don't have to. You're here right now. We're celebrating our 18-year anniversary next Sunday. Get here for the party. The most unusual message the Lord gave us for that, so I hope you'll be here to hear it.
Then I'm starting my series Do the New You. I'm releasing a book. I'm starting a series. That's the week after. So much good stuff. Holly has been locked away in the studio making small group curriculum. We've just been going at it this year. We've been writing songs. I think we wrote eight songs last week. The Lord is about to pour out a gully-washing torrent of his grace and mercy upon our church in this next year. I'm excited you're here for it. You say, "Well, I'm not even a member". You don't have to be. This is one of those overflowing blessings. If you just get close enough to the boat, it'll splash on you. I'm telling you, man. God has something incredible.
All right. Today I want to share with you a message I've been trying to figure out how to present since this summer. I'm excited. I'll just give you a picture, and I know it's going to help you. Turn in your Bible to Psalm 144. I've been waiting on the right time to preach this one. The Lord showed me how to do it, and I pray he'll help me. You pray for me too, because if he helps me, it helps you. So pray for me that I would say what he wants me to say. Nothing more, nothing less. Psalm 144. "Praise be to the Lord my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle. He is my loving God and my fortress, my stronghold and my deliverer, my shield, in whom I take refuge, who subdues peoples under me". Drop down to verse 9. "I will sing a new song to you, my God; on the ten-stringed lyre I will make music to you, to the One who gives victory to kings, who delivers his servant David".
Now say your name this time. "Who delivers his servant…" Yeah. He's going to deliver you. "From the deadly sword deliver me; rescue me from the hands of foreigners whose mouths are full of lies, whose right hands are deceitful". Now let's look at Colossians 3:1, just one verse from Colossians. "Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God". I want to teach you today how to Tune Your Heart to Truth so you can get some peace, so you can get some joy, so you can get some energy, so you can get some direction.
Father, now I stand ready to be used by you. Blow through me like I'm a trumpet and use me how you want to. In Jesus' name, amen.
The fun thing about marriage… Well, there are a lot of fun things about marriage. One fun thing is putting little nicknames in your phone for your spouse's contact. How many of you have a name for your spouse, significant other, in your phone that is not their legal name? It's not their Social Security number. I change the name I have for Holly about once every year. The one I have now is just two emojis. I have the heart emoji and the queen emoji because she's the queen of my heart. Of course it's an orange heart for Dabo (for Clemson). It's funny. One day I had it hooked up to the car where it reads the texts to you when they come through. It was reading it out loud, and it said, "Text from 'Orange heart/light skin princess.'" So that's what I call her around the house when we're not here on Sunday. "Come over here, Orange heart/light skin princess".
Well, she put the name in her phone for me… Again, we'll change them. We'll get a little new inside joke and we'll change it from time to time. If you don't have a different name for your spouse in your phone than their name, you need to be more intimate. It's a predictor of how long the marriage is going to last if you have a playful name in your phone. I'm sure a study says that somewhere (87 percent of studies are made up on the spot). All right. So, she put a name in her phone for me. I just thought about this this morning when I was thinking how I wanted to introduce this topic to you. We got it from a John Mayer song. It said, "A good man with a good heart".
There's a song we really like that John Mayer sang. He said, "I'm a good man with a good heart". I'm not going to sing any more so I don't get a YouTube copyright strike on that from John Mayer. But it would say that in her phone when I would call: "Good man with a good heart". So, of course it makes you wonder. "Am I"? Are you a good man with a good heart? We're going to talk about that for a moment. We're going to talk about a good heart, because honestly, I am surprised how quickly my heart can switch from the best intention to the worst decision. Y'all aren't going to help me preach a bit today. I ought to take this sermon to Boston in a couple of weeks. This is so difficult to preach in the South anyway, isn't it? We say, "Bless your heart". What we mean is, "You are an idiot". "Oh, bless your heart". So even that is difficult.
Do I have a good heart? Well, my heart this week wanted so many different things. There were times this week when my heart wanted to stay in bed, pull up the covers, and pretend like y'all weren't coming to hear a word from God this week because I didn't know how to say it. That happens every week. Another part of my heart wanted to get in here and find whatever chain you've been bound by and take the hammer of the Word of God and see if the Lord might break you loose for his glory so you can get on with doing what you're supposed to do this year. Same heart.
One part of my heart this week wanted to be attentive, a good listener. One part of my heart wanted to be like, "Would you shut up and let me talk, because you don't know what you're talking about". It was in the same conversation, and it wasn't with anybody in this room. From the same heart. We are thankful in these moments for biblical examples like David, who said, "Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name!" and from the same heart said, "Go get that woman Bathsheba who is not my wife. Bring her to me. I want to be intimate with her more than I want to be obedient to God". From the same heart that devised such beautiful language and poetry came so many problems. David had great praise in his heart. David had great problems in his life.
One Scripture writer said he had 99 problems, and Bathsheba was one. Now, before we move deeper in this textual conversation about your heart… I know it switches sometimes, where you feel really grateful and then get really petty. Pettiness and praise. Same heart. I always point this out when I preach about David, lest we forget that we are learning from someone in the Scripture whose life was not always perfect. Now, in our culture we will see a very different definition and relationship to what's called the heart. I'm going to define it in just a moment, but I'm not talking about the organ. We see a very different definition than we see scripturally in our culture today. In our culture today, the heart is a master to be obeyed; therefore, we give advice like, "Okay. Follow your heart".
In the Scripture it's a little different. In the Scripture, the heart does not seem to be a master to be obeyed. Heart represents the center of your internal life. You're like, "What are you talking about, my 'heart'? I mean, that could mean a lot of different things. Are you talking about my ability to love? Are you talking about my excitement? Are you talking about my passion? Are you talking about my conscience"? Yes. All of those things are embodied in the Hebrew idea of the heart. It is the center of your internal world, and in the Scripture the heart is capable of incredible generosity. One man said to his fellow comrade, "Do all that is in your mind. I am with you heart and soul". From the heart flow the issues of life.
So, one Scripture writer said, "Guard your heart". That's really different than "Follow your heart". Follow your heart means my heart is leading me. The only problem I have with my heart leading me is that is a limited resource, because sometimes I feel like following Jesus; sometimes I don't. Sometimes I feel like forgiving; sometimes I don't. Sometimes I feel like turning the other cheek, and sometimes I feel like kicking… My heart needs to be guarded. So, let's go back to Colossians 3 for a moment, and then I'll bring you to David, and then I want to show you this in a visual form. In Colossians, the apostle Paul says, "Since, then, you have been raised with Christ…" Question, class. "You have been raised with Christ". Past tense or present tense? Since that happened (raised with Christ), "…set your hearts on things above". Past tense or present tense? Okay.
I'm pointing this out to you not because I think you need a grammar lesson but because I want you to understand your soul can be saved and your heart still has to be set. The language here is active, not passive. "Therefore, since you have been raised with Christ, follow your heart. The heart wants what it wants. Give it what it wants". You don't do that with a 2-year-old. The 2-year-old would have their tongue in a light socket. And you watch the 2-year-old because you love the 2-year-old. The 2-year-old is not your enemy. Neither is your heart. Your emotions are not your enemy. Neither is your 2-year-old. The point I'm trying to make here is that your heart, while not an enemy to be defeated, because God gave you that heart and he will speak to you through that heart and he will move in your heart… Sometimes people will say, "Furtick is just an emotionalist. He's just an emotional preacher".
What do you want me to be? Do you want me to be an Ambien preacher and put you to sleep and stand up here and drone on and on and not move you? When God found David he said, "I found a man after my own heart". God is after your heart. God wants you to feel for him. God wants you to praise him with enthusiasm for your future and with an excitement about who he is. Quiet Christians, take note. You've got something to shout about if you want to. Yet the word set drew my attention, because the idea that I have been raised with Christ… Jesus did that for me. Come on. Jesus did that for you. He died for you. Jesus gave you a new heart. The Scripture speaks about a stony heart and a heart of flesh. One is the old covenant (keeping the commandments) and one is the new covenant, established and ratified by the blood of our very own Savior whereby he makes you new on the inside. Yet this new heart I have still has to be set, because it is not like the infomercial used to say: "Set it and forget it".
I promise you if you take that approach to your own spiritual life and your attitude and your mindset… I don't care how much blood of Jesus covers you. If you don't take responsibility for setting your heart… That is a decision, not a default. If you don't do it, the Devil will. If you don't do it, disappointment will. If you don't do it, stress will. The heart is not an enemy to be hated. You can enjoy the emotions God gave you, and that's wonderful. The heart is neither a leader to be followed. I'll tell you why the heart is not a leader to be followed. I want you to say this to your neighbor, because it's going to sound mean and I want you to be in on it with me so we all get in trouble together. Look at your neighbor and say, "Your heart is a liar". It's not a whole conversation. That's all you're supposed to say. We don't have time for any response. All right? No rebuttal. We will take our questions at the end of the class.
Okay. Look at your other neighbor so they don't think you were picking on them and say, "Your heart is a liar". "I don't appreciate this. I came to be uplifted and encouraged by the Word of God". All right. Since you want to talk about the Word of God, Jeremiah 17:9: "The heart is deceitful…" Now you understand why I can't let my heart be my leader. I found out my heart is a liar. I think we have enough liars for leaders without electing our own point of view to call the shots, without electing how I feel at 3:00 p.m. to call the shots, without waiting to see if I'm in the mood that I need to be in to do the thing I said I would do last week. My heart can't be my leader because my heart is a liar. Don't get me wrong. My heart is also an incredible asset to show me in moments, "This is what God cares about". You know, we say, "My heart goes out to you". It means, "This is one of the ways I feel guided to help people".
That's how I know to give that waitress a $50 tip, because something in my heart… That's how I know to overlook the offense and just see what's going on beneath, because my heart… I'm thankful for it. It's not my enemy, but it's not my instructor either. Instead, I think we need to look at our heart as an instrument. Now I want to move into my picture from David's life and from my life. Go ahead and bring out the guitar. I'm going to play it. You're going to be nice to me when I do. I'm not professional, but I get by. I decided to do this illustration myself. I'm going to do my own stunts today. When I thought about it… David is praising God, and the first thing he said…
Back to Psalm 144. He said, "God trains my hands and my fingers for battle". So, I'm imagining David writing this probably later. You know, he's talking about subduing people, so he's currently a king, but he's remembering that he wasn't always a king. He's remembering that there was this champion Philistine warrior who dared to defy the armies of the living God. He was bigger than David, greater than David, more skilled and seasoned than David, and had greater weaponry and artillery than David. But when God trains your fingers, even a slingshot with a smooth stone will bring down the biggest giant. David had heart. He wraps his fingers around that sling. I mean, I tried to take tennis lessons, and it took him three weeks just to get my grip semi-correct. My grip for a tennis racket. Imagine what it takes to be a skilled slinger.
David said, "I trained to kill lions and bears. I trained. God showed me how to grip it so that when I got in a fight, he gave me the victory". But then the language changes. The language changes from fighting to flowing. The language changes in verse 9. David, after talking about how God is fighting for you… I want you to remember this week God is fighting for you. Tell your neighbor, "God is fighting for you". Tell them, "God is bigger than it". God is bigger than that report. God is bigger than that obsession. God is bigger than that thing. God is bigger than that night terror. Yet he gives a strategy in verse 9 that is connected, but you just have to have ears to hear and a heart to receive. He says, "I will sing a new song to you, my God". "I will sing from my heart".
David was a praiser. Yes, he was a fighter, but he was also a lover. He had heart. He could take down an enemy, but he also understood intimacy. That's why he said, "I have trained fingers for war, but the Lord is the love and the refuge of my life". He had trained fingers that knew how to grip a sling when he needed to fight a giant, but watch this. He said, "I will sing praise to you, God; on the ten-stringed lyre…" Earlier, when I said, "Your heart is a liar," I was setting you up for a double entendre to show you that David here in the midst of a battle… You say, "How do you know he's in a battle"? Go to verse 11. He says, "Deliver me; rescue me from the hands of foreigners whose mouths are full of lies…" He's fighting lies. Are you fighting lies…the lies they told about you, the lies you told about you, the lies they spoke over you that have grown into insecurities that followed you into your adult life?
Everybody under the sound of my voice is fighting a lie that you're not enough, that God is but you're not. But guess who made you? If he made your mouth, he'll fill it. If he put you there, he'll grow you there. Hallelujah! I'm fighting these lies. So, I was surprised that David fought lies with a lyre. Now I have two "liars" in the passage. One is an instrument. A lyre is just a harp. They were slightly different, but they're used interchangeably. The Hebrew Scriptures give three different types of instruments they would go and worship with in the temple: the percussion instruments, like the cymbals and the timbrels and the tambourines; the wind instruments, the ram's horn, the trumpet, the flute… They used a flute more in Egypt. That wasn't really the Israelites' jam, but they put the flute in there sometimes. Just every once in a while over in 808 when they were really wanting to party. Then the stringed instruments.
Did you see verse 9? He said, "I will praise you on the lyre from my heart, the ten-stringed instrument". Ten strings. I didn't want to bring a lyre to church. It felt inefficient to roll a harp out here, seeing as I've never played one, but we have so many guitars around this church I thought we could use it for an illustration. First of all, a few words about this guitar. This is a Martin guitar, and that is a good company to make guitars. I'm saying it's a nice guitar. One thing all of these musicians who are on this stage would tell you is, first of all, the instrument can never exceed the quality of the musician who plays it. I could hand E a $10 guitar. This one is not $10. I don't know how much it costs, but it's not $10. The $10 one would sound better with him than this one with me. I'm not being self-deprecating. If he were preaching, I'm a better preacher than him. He's just a better guitar player than me. Okay?
But look. I'm going to sing you a hymn where I got the title of this message, Tune Your Heart, from. This hymn was written in the 1700s. If you know it, you can sing it. The words are on the screen. Come thou fount of every blessing, Tune my heart to sing thy grace; Streams of mercy never ceasing, Call for songs of loudest praise. Teach me some melodious sonnet, Sung by flaming tongues above; Praise the mount, I'm fixed upon it, Mount of thy redeeming love. I got my title from that first line. Listen to it again. Come thou fount of every blessing, Tune my heart to sing thy grace… It's amazing when you're in tune with the grace of God. It's amazing when you're in tune with the voice of God. When I'm in tune with you, Lord, I don't have to fight so much. When I'm in tune with you, Lord, I don't have to manipulate so much. When I'm in tune with you, Lord, I don't have to defend myself; you fight my battles. When I'm in tune with you, Lord…
Somebody say, "Lord, I want to be in tune with you". When I'm in tune with you, Lord, my problems look small. When I'm in tune with you, Lord, it feels like all things are possible. When I'm in tune with you, Lord, I can scale a wall. When I'm in tune with you, Lord, the giant looks like an opportunity, not a problem. When I'm in tune with you, Lord, I'm able to laugh at what used to make me cry. When I'm in tune with you, Lord, I'm able to cry and know that tears don't last always but joy comes in the morning. When I'm in tune with you, Lord. It's a beautiful thing to be in tune. I think we wouldn't have to use our sling as much if we used our strings a little more. If we would learn to worship God in quiet and in private, some of the things that wear us out he would work out. I'm not saying it's magic. I'm just saying that you in tune with God is a bad dude in a good way. A good man with a good heart. She says I'm that, and sometimes I am.
What happens to me from time to time… It happened to David, too, so I don't feel so bad. And it happens to you. Through daily life, we get distracted. (Chris, come. I think we should do this together. We talked about it, and I told him I might call him.) You get distracted, right? You don't decide to just start following your own whims and fall back into old temptations. At least, most people don't. Instead, it's more like a distraction. We worked this out ahead of time, and he's cool with it. He's going to be the Devil. He sang like an angel, but he's a versatile worshiper. Just for illustration. So, I'm flowing, you know. "Yeah, man. Yeah, I'm going to start the business. I'm going to raise these kids to be world changers". Right? "Come thou fount…" Flowing like that.
Then you look away… You thought you could set it and… Then you get a text message, and then you have to walk into a meeting. You go to say what you're supposed to say and be who you're supposed to be and show up like you're supposed to show up, and it's "Come thou fount…" That doesn't sound… Do a little more, Chris. Sometimes the Devil just tweaks you a little bit, but sometimes… No, I know. I know how it has really been in your house with your teenagers. I'm about to prophesy. You go to step up to it, and it was good, and now it's "Come thou fount…" Wait a minute. "God, did you leave me? Did you forsake me"? I know what it is. I need a new guitar. "I need a new husband".
Maybe you do, but before you trash it, tune it. It happens to all of us every day. If you think for one moment that you can get saved one time and your heart is permanently set on the affections for the things that matter to the heart of God and that now you will be selfless in every encounter and will always know the way he leads you to go in… Watch these musicians the next time we worship, because they don't tune their guitars once a month. They don't tune their guitars once a week. They don't even just tune their guitars every Sunday before they play. They tune it between every song. It means that every day I'm alive and every breath I breathe and every transition I go into, there is a possibility that my heart will go out of tune.
From the same heart come your greatest fears. From the same heart comes your greatest faith. Which one you move into depends on what you're tuned to. Why this helped me so much was because I struggle with a lot of condemnation at how much I change from wanting to do God's will to not wanting to do God's will, from feeling motivated to preach the message to feeling like I just want somebody to preach to me, from feeling like I want to be more giving to feeling like nobody is taking care of me and being very… I can have very big pity parties. When I realize that my heart is a lyre, that my heart is a harp, a stringed instrument, then I realize it has to be tuned to truth. I told you this illustration was going to help us. That's really why I'm doing it. I'm not trying to just put an entertainment value on the sermon.
I don't care about that. There's way better, more entertaining stuff you can watch on your Hulu account, but you came here to get help for your heart. I'm trying to show you that it sounds like that right now, but the guitar is good. The wood is good. You've just been tuned to some stuff that is beneath who you really are. How many are glad that Jesus Christ does tune-ups? Is that why you came to church today? Is that why you logged on today? Now, there are two ways to tune this guitar. The guitar is in tune, technically, when the strings have the appropriate tension through these pegs that Chris so rudely tuned down, like the Devil does with discouragement, disappointment, bills, offenses, and all of these things. I could spend a whole hour just going through all of the things that distract you and detune you.
If the Enemy can detune your heart, he can defeat you in your life. You'll be reaching for slings, fighting, when you need to be reaching for strings, tuning. "He trains my hands for war". But David said, "I've learned to tune my heart to truth". Not cultural truth. We have personalized the precepts, so we say things like, "My truth," but I don't tune to my truth, because my heart is a liar. I cannot just listen to my heart at all times. That would cause me to want to quit. That would cause me to want to give up. That would cause me to lash out. That would cause me to sink. That would cause me to go all the way down farther into the spiral. It's fine to follow your heart when your heart is going up, but there are times in your life where you need to be tuned.
I want you to make sure in those times that you are tuning to truth, not your subjective experience. Not even what your parents taught you. If your parents taught it and God taught against it, your parents were wrong, not God. What your parents taught you was tradition. What God wants to tune you to is truth. "Tune me to truth". That means, "God, show me where I'm wrong and blaming them". That means, "God, show me where I think I need to get more and I really need to give more, because I want to be tuned to truth. Show me where I've been thinking I'm at a disadvantage when, really, my slingshot is a secret weapon". "I've been saying I don't have the resources". But maybe God didn't give you the resources so he could source this one so he could get the glory for what he does that you could never do. To tune my heart to truth.
There are a couple ways to tune the instruments. A stringed instrument, like you and me… We have heartstrings. Right? A stringed instrument goes out of tune. This guy came over to tune our piano and charged, like, $300. Then he was back a few months later, and I was like, "Bro, do I get a discount? This is your second time trying this". He goes, "No. I have to do it every time the weather changes". When the seasons change, the strings must be recalibrated. You're not a kid anymore. The season is changing. How many of you are going through a seasonal change in your life right now? Wave at me. How many of y'all feel like in Charlotte we go through three seasonal changes every day, every week? I'm going to have the piano tuner over at my house three times a day if we keep this weather fluctuation up. Good lord! It can feel like that in your life, because every time the temperature changes, you have to retune.
Every time the seasons change… So, you need to be asking the question, "God, who do you want me to be now? Who are you calling me to be now? What childish things do I need to put aside? My season is changing". Sometimes you are in a season of abundance, but you keep thinking like scarcity. You're out of tune. Sometimes you are in a season of focus, but you're thinking… Sometimes you're in a season of marriage, but you're scheduling your life like you're single. Your season has changed. You have to retune. So, when you need to retune you can do a few things. First, you can buy one of these. This is a tuner. This one is about $20. You can tune. You can do that, but I'm going to give you something from the Bible. Okay? (I feel like Garth Brooks with this microphone and this acoustic guitar right now. This is so weird. I visualized it, but I told the Lord, "I'll flow with it however you want". I never saw myself standing here holding the guitar in this moment behind the pulpit. This is very awkward, and I love you.)
Okay. Here it is. Give me verse 10. I wanted to check the verse. David said not only is it important what you tune, that you see yourself as a stringed instrument that has to be tuned regularly to the intervals of God's specific purpose and designation of your life. Not only do I have to be tuned when I go into a new room, a new season, so I don't carry yesterday's manna mentality into today's Promised Land situation. Not only do I need God to tune me when I go into something new, but watch this. He said, "I will sing to the one who gives victory to kings". Now, not only is David saying, "I will sing to the one…" Like, if I gave you a dollar, I gave a dollar to you. But he's saying, "I am going to sing in tune with the one…" I'll show you. LJ is playing a digital instrument. His keyboard does not go out of tune. It can't. It's digital. It is set, and it will stay set. His keyboard is tuned, and I know it's in tune right now.
So, the fact that I'm out of tune on this stringed instrument means I need to turn around to someone who is always in tune. Look. I've been thinking about how to get this across to you. I've been thinking about it for months. You think you're trash. You are about to break your Martin. You're about to mess up your mind. You're about to walk away from your opportunity. It's not trashed; it's just not tuned. So, if I turn to the one who is in tune and say, "Hey, LJ, give me an E," and he plays an E, and I play what's supposed to be an E on my liar… He's playing the truth, and I'm playing the liar. He says E sounds like this, and I say E sounds like this. He's playing higher and I'm playing lower. He's right. I'm wrong. He's not coming down to me; I'm coming up to him, because I'm turned to the one… Do you get it? You're not coming down to it. It's not coming down to you.
God is not going to lower his standard. God is not going to decide you're just in bondage and that's just the way you were born. If the Son will make you free, you will be free indeed. So, if I'm down here and he's up there, I'm not staying down here; I'm coming up higher! High-five three people and say, "Get up here". Get up here where the glory is. Get up here where the praise is. Get up here where the blessing is. Get up here where the abundance is. Get up here where the wisdom is. First of all peaceable and then pure. It comes from God, and it can't run out. Whose voice are you tuning to? I decided that even if everybody else does it, I'm not tuning to everybody else in this season of my life. I'm not. Stupid is still stupid even if you call it true. So, if the Lord shows me the way I'm acting is stupid, I'm not stooping to stupid and calling it truth. I'm tuning up. Do you feel me?
That's why I have to get my Bible out in the morning. I have to tune up. I woke up feeling defeated, but my Bible said I'm more than a conqueror. I've got to tune up. I can come down to the level of what I feel or I could come up to the level of what God says. I hear two voices speaking today. One is trying to make me a victim, and one is trying to make me a victor. I want to know… Whose report do you believe? We shall believe! His report says I am healed. His report says I am free. His report says victory. Give me a B, LJ. I'm going to get this thing back in tune. I'm going to get my life back in tune. Do you hear me? I'm going to get my heart un-gunked, un-junked, unloaded, unblocked, and unstopped, because I believe God wants to use me. I believe God wants to do more through me, and I can't do it out of tune. The fount of every blessing can't flow through me if I'm fixated on what I think is true. Let God be true (Romans 3:4) and every man a liar. (Give me a G, LJ.)
One time I went on the comments. Do you want to get out of tune? Go on a YouTube comment. My God! It was 10 years ago, and I still remember it. This is how much something can get in your heart. Not only a lie, like somebody telling you that sexual immorality is no big deal. Well, that's a lie. "But that's what my heart is leading me…" Your heart is a liar. God is not bringing his standard down to fit your situation. He'll call you up. He doesn't hate you. He doesn't condemn you, but he's not going to leave you in a dissonant state so you miss your destiny. He's going to bring you in tune. The Lord loves you too much to let you spend the rest of your life in harmony with hell. Speaking of hell, the YouTube comments… It was during a time in the church where I used to sing more when we would finish the worship. I would come out and sing a hymn all the time. The YouTube comment on the sermon said… I remember it almost word for word. God forgive me for giving this person my attention like I did. They said, "That awkward moment when Steven Furtick starts singing the song and everybody secretly wishes, 'Just shut up and let the real singers sing.'"
Not that I pay any attention to that stuff. Whatever. You know, that thing got in my heart. "I am Iron Man"! It got in my heart. (The real ones know.) It could be anything. I'll go on sometimes, and they'll say, "Why is he wearing that tee shirt? He wore a U2 tee shirt on the stage. This is not the gospel. Where's Jesus in this? Jesus is not in U2". Stuff can get in your heart. If I let that I'm not a professionally trained singer keep me from singing, what songs wouldn't I have written over the last 10 years? If I let everybody who said I didn't preach the real gospel keep me from preaching the gospel, how many people would we not baptize next week at our eighteenth anniversary? I speak of me to get to you. Are you tuning down to the trolls? Not only the online ones. Man, the Lord really set me free from that. He said, "How are you going to tune your life to the trolls? Your wife loves you and knows you're a man of God. The people who need to know know you're a man of God, and somebody likes to hear you sing".
I hope you're watching, because I'm still singing, and I'm going to keep on singing as long as I've got breath in my lungs, because I don't tune down to what you say; I tune up! Oh, get ready! Get ready for what you're going to do when you get in tune. God said, "I brought you to church to tune you". Sing to the Lord a new song! High-five somebody and say, "Wait till you hear me in tune, because when I get in tune, when I get in the stream of the current of the mercy of God…" "Eye has not seen and ear has not heard, nor has it entered into the heart of a man what God has prepared, but God has revealed it by his Spirit". You say, "Well, Pastor, this is great, but I don't have LJ". Yes, you do. His name is Lord Jesus. Now it's time to preach. "Since, then, you have been raised with Christ…" Since, then, you've been brought up out of your grave; since, then, your sins are behind you; since, then, there's no Red Sea in front of you that can stop God from doing what he destined for your life, give him a praise, an in-tune praise, a "season to celebrate" praise! Everything that has breath, give him praise! Praise!
I will bless the Lord at all times, and his praise… I'm a stringed instrument. I'm tuned up by the Spirit of God. I'm sanctified, Spirit-filled, ready for this season! I'm done tuning down to stupid. I'm done tuning down to trolls. I'm done tuning down to tradition. I've got an LJ. He's tuning you. Tuning feels like tension. (Give me D.) Yes, Lord. If you say that's D, I say that's D. If you say that's good, I say it's good. If you say it is well, I say it is well. If you say, "Let it go," I let it go. (Give me an A.) If you say I'm going to survive and this will make me stronger, I will survive and it will make me stronger. (Give me E.)
Now a guitar that I thought needed to be thrown away… Because I got with LJ and sang to the one who is in tune. I see you getting with Jesus this week, the Lord Jesus who reigns above all, away from the lies, quiet in your own heart, allowing his heart to come through. David was a good man with a good heart, but even the best heart gets out of tune. You did what you did, but that doesn't reflect who you are. You are an instrument. I want you to get with him this week, get in harmony with his will, and let him show you some things again. Invite him to take your hand off the sling. Stop trying to fight in your own strength, and let him put his hands on the stringed instrument of your heart so you can sing again. Come thou fount of every blessing, Tune my heart to sing thy grace. Streams of mercy never ceasing, Call for songs of loudest praise.
Before I can praise, I have to pause and get back in tune. That's all this is. This is a pause between praises, a pause, a transitional moment. Teach me some melodious sonnet, Sung by flaming tongues above, Praise the mount, I'm fixed upon it, Mount of thy redeeming love. He's getting you back in tune. I hear your music coming forth now. He's tuning you. Oh, to grace how great a debtor Daily I'm constrained to be; Let thy goodness like a fetter Bind my wandering heart to thee. Prone to wander… Listen. …Lord, I feel it… Just because you wander doesn't mean he's not with you. Prone to leave the God I love. Here's the message. Here's my heart, Lord, take and seal it, Seal it for thy courts above. Lift your hands. You're the instrument now.