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Watch 2022-2023 online sermons » Steven Furtick » Steven Furtick - God Chose You... Will You?

Steven Furtick - God Chose You... Will You?

Steven Furtick - God Chose You... Will You?
TOPICS: Do The New You

Blessings upon you today. Grace and mercy to you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in heavenly places. May the God of all comfort comfort you today. May the God of all peace guard your heart and your mind. I'm glad you're here. If you're watching online, I'm glad you chose to watch this video. God knows there's a lot of other stuff you could have watched on the Internet. Here you are listening to a Holy Ghost preacher today. God might just speak to you. This word might just make you jump. Your phone might heat up with this word today. The presence of the Lord is in this place. I've got five people who agree with me at Ballantyne. How about University City, Matthews…? How about y'all up here in the top section? Do you believe God can do something amazing today? Glory to God. I'm fired up. I've got the Holy Ghost. I'm burning up.

Tell your neighbor, "If you brought cold water, don't pour your water on me". Tell them, "I've got the Holy Ghost, and I'm burning up". Anybody burning up today? Yeah. I don't need a sauna to burn up; I've got the Spirit of the Lord. I feel it heating up right now. This is an amazing day in your life. I need you to know that if you need to get a record of who you were before this series, you need to take a selfie right now, because you will be unrecognizable seven weeks from now what God is about to do in your life. I declare it, I decree it, and I choose to believe it.

Today I'm releasing to my church my first new book in eight years, Do the New You. You get it first. That's right. This is written so I can come home with you. Sounds kind of weird. This is where I get to coach you. This is where I get to be a voice in your life that reminds you that you are the righteousness of God in Jesus Christ; the voice in your life that helps you realize you are more than the math of what is against you, that you are more than the mistakes you have made, that the Great I Am lives in you and whatever he is you are too. I feel a flow coming! Give me an acoustic guitar ready for when I finish preaching. I feel fresh oil. I feel fresh songs. I feel a fresh word coming to your house today. I'm excited. We've been going absolutely crazy. We've been really overdoing it. I told Holly we have so much content coming your way.

Next week you'll get to hear about our eGroup study your very own Holly Furtick has created for you with our team…let's thank God for her…to walk you through each week what we're doing, take it further. So, you can get the book. You can get the audiobook. The audiobook is the one. Yeah, that's the one. I've also put together a master class for you with a friend of mine who is a personal development and performance coach. We get into it from the biblical side, but how many know if you have the truth but don't have the tools to put the truth into practice, sometimes it's like a seed that doesn't take root and bear fruit in your life. So, that's going to be available. I sat down with my oldest son Elijah and JT and recorded for the YTH Nation Podcast a special conversation that has been 18 years in the making ever since Elijah was born. That will be dropping later this week, and the book is available.

Today, I want to put this thing in 3D for you. I want to go to the Scripture that started it all for Jeremiah and for me as this concept Do the New You comes to life. Oh, I'm excited. Jeremiah, chapter 1. I have some surprises for you over the next seven weeks. This will be a foundation today for us to build on. Jeremiah, chapter 1, verse 4. Let's go. "The word of the Lord came to me, saying…" I'm not going to do it, but I could preach the entire message off of that verse. I'm not going to do it. I have more verses, but I could stop right there and preach. "The word of the Lord came to me, saying…" First of all, the word is perpetual. "It came to me". It didn't just come once when God said, "Let there be light". There can still be light, because he's still speaking. Not only is it perpetual but it is personal. "The word of the Lord came to me".

It's perpetual. It's personal. But watch this. It is also predestined. This is where we want to get today. Verse 5: "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations". "'All that sounds good, Sovereign Lord,' I said. 'I don't know how to speak; I am too young.' But the Lord…" This sounds like an interruption of your insecurities. Would you let God interrupt your insecurities if he wanted to today? "But the Lord said to me, 'Do not say, "I am too young".'"

Y'all, whatever you put behind the words I am is a direct reflection on your Maker, because that's his name. "So the Lord said to me, 'Do not say, "I am too young". You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you. Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you and will rescue you,' declares the Lord". Let's camp on verse 9 today. "Then the Lord reached out his hand and touched my mouth and said to me, 'I have put my words in your mouth.'" The title of our first message for our brand-new series Do the New You is God Chose You…Will You? Put that in the comments right now. God chose you. Now a question. Will you? That's what we're going to decide.

Spirit of God, I declare over each and every life who connected with this message that you have already decided and destined who they will become. Now, God, I come into partnership with you to speak your words over your people, and I expect a great success from it because you're with me. In Jesus' name, amen.

Wow. You feel like we could go home on that…but we won't. It's good to go over this material. I spent a year writing this book Do the New You. That's Yeah, I'm promoting it, because I believe in it. I believe in it because I need it. From what I see as a pastor, you do too. Seeing all of the people we get to meet and all of the precious people we get to partner with in ministry who are silently asking the same question but may be afraid to say it because it makes them sound like rookies or complainers. The question is…How do I change? How do I make changes that stay? How do I change? The first step to this, I would contend, does not start with you at all; it starts with the God who changes you. The God who changes you is the God who created you. Go ahead and bring that screen out. I have a bunch of toys coming today. I want this message to be special, so I have all this stuff I'm planning to bring up here on the stage.

Now, I'm not the most technological person. I'm going to bring up some of my Scriptures on this screen and draw on the screen for visual learners. How many of you are visual learners? Uh-huh. And how many of you are auditory learners? And how many of you are still trying to figure out what style you are because you're 50 and still haven't learned everything you think you need to know? Good. Anyway, it just reminded me when they were bringing this out… When the iPad first came out, before you were born, when the iPad was just an arrow in the quiver of Steve Jobs… I remember how excited I was to have my first iPad. I was flying somewhere to preach, and I had the iPad out, because I wanted to preach from my iPad for the first time. I was excited.

This guy next to me on the plane… I'm not judging him, but he looked kind of nerdy. He looked like a guy who knew a lot about technology. Is that a better way to say it? He looked very techy. (He looked like a nerd.) He looked at my iPad, and he started to lust. He was like, "How do you like it"? Because at that time it was relatively new technology. I said, "I love it. I just got it. It's great". He goes, "What do you do on it"? I said, "Well, like I said, I just got it, but so far… I'm a preacher, so I'm putting my Bible notes on here for my sermon, and I play Angry Birds on it with my 5-year-old…Fruit Ninja". All of a sudden, his facial expression changed. I watched it. He went from excited to disgusted. He shook his head. He looked back at me. I'll never forget what he said.

This has been over a decade ago, and I remember exactly what he said. "You are using that device far beneath its full potential". He didn't want to talk the rest of the flight. It was absolute anathema to him, just the curse of Lucifer himself, to be sitting next to somebody on a plane who had something so powerful, who had something with so much potential, and here I am putting a slingshot at some birds and a sword on some watermelons. He looked at it and said, "Oh, I wish I could get my hands on that iPad. You've got more money than you do good sense if that's all you're doing with that iPad. Do you know what I could do with that iPad? I could cure cancer with that iPad".

I guess he could. We didn't speak the rest of the time. I should have asked him, "Well, what will it do"? I should have asked him, but I felt kind of embarrassed at that point to be sitting with something that was so amazing, and I knew it was amazing, but to be so limited in my ability to access the potential of something that was so powerful and to not know how. I should have asked him. He said, "You are using…" He lectured me, the class I didn't ask for. "You are using that device…" I wonder if God ever looks at what he made… I wonder if God ever looks at what is in your spirit, if God ever looks at the gifts that are in seed form in the soil of you… I wonder if God ever looks at the hand you've been dealt and the skillful hands you've been given and the opportunities and open doors and the amazing ways he has made for you and the amazing personality he has endowed you with that you apologize for because it wasn't just like your brother's growing up… I wonder if God ever looks at what he gave you and says, "You are using what you're holding far beneath its full potential".

Now, of course, the phrase you do you is a controversial phrase. I don't want to assume you know what I'm trying to say here. It's when people… Usually they're trying to say, "I would never in my lifetime wear those, but you do you". Like, "I think you look ridiculous". They don't say that part. They go, "You do you". Or, in a more positive sense, it's what I told Holly. When she was first trying to figure out how to preach, she was like, "But I'm not preachy". I'm like, "You don't need to scream. We've got microphones. I just scream because I've got issues. Be calm. Do you. People will actually be thankful they don't have to listen to me scream that week when you get up and tell them very softly. You can kick their butts in a whisper. Do you".

Do you. It's good, and I know it's a little bit old. It's a little cliché. "Do you". The only problem I have with the advice "Do you" is… That would be good advice if you knew you, but do you? Yeah, "Do you". I think that's a wonderful piece of advice if you're talking to somebody who's going to do a new hairstyle. If you ever watch an anniversary sermon from the church, you will notice the number of hair expressions I have gone through in the years. I apologize for none of them. Every hairdo I did at the time was good. A woman got online the other week and said, "I'm very disappointed that you're dyeing your beard. I thought you were going to grow gray gracefully and show that the age of the Lord is a blessing. I'm very disappointed to see that you've begun to color your beard".

So now you can't even dye you and do you without somebody telling you… Come on. I'm going to dye it for a little while. The Bible says, "Die to the old," so that's what I'm trying to do. Yeah. "Do you". If it goes gray, you'll know I'm ready to try new me. Very helpful advice if you're saying, "Hey, don't feel the pressure to perform like you saw somebody else perform. Do you. Sing in your range. Use your gift. Say it how you say it. That's great". Or, you know, "Get a mohawk. Everybody should do it once in their life. Get a mullet". I'm halfway there right now. I'm thinking about it. If that's what I want to do, I should do it. But listen. I didn't really come here to talk to you about mohawks and mullets, did I. I came to talk about mindsets. I came to talk about your mindset. What I am concerned about for the people I pastor… This doesn't have to be every pastor's burden, but I am concerned that the way we read Jeremiah 1:4-9 is different than how it happened.

I'm going to read it again, and I'm going to read it as if it were written with our "Just do you" mentality that we bring to a lot of the situations in our lives. Here's how it goes. Jeremiah 1:4: "The word of the Lord came to me, saying, 'Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.' 'Alas, Sovereign Lord,' I said, 'I do not know how to speak; I am too young.' And the Lord said to me, ['Just do you. You don't know how to speak? Don't speak. No, that's cool. I thought I made you, but you do you.']" "I thought I was the Sovereign God who put you together. I thought I was the one who spoke you out of nothing before you were formed in your mother's womb".

God doesn't tell Jeremiah upon his excuse, "Just do you". Look at what he says in verse 7. Read it how it actually says. "But the Lord said to me, 'Do not say, "I am too young". You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you.'" This verse tells me do you… Let me show you on the screen. I think this is very powerful, because here we are. I have the whole Bible on this screen, y'all. That guy on the plane would be so proud of me if he could see me today. Come on. Some people are just watching this looking for Taylor at the Super Bowl, and I'm preaching the whole prophecy of God on a flipped-sideways TV screen. I'm going to do me. Do y'all think she's going to make it back from Japan in time? I'm praying for Taylor. I like seeing her out there. I think she's great.

Now look at this. When we get to Jeremiah, chapter 1, all the way to the verse… I thought the little pen… Where did I put it? Back here? This is going to take a second for me to get used to this. At the top? It's by the book? The other book? I only have one book. Graham, come get it for me. Y'all give Graham a hand as he comes. Where did it go? Oh. Hey! It was hidden underneath the Word of God. No, no. You didn't hear me. It was hidden beneath the Word of God. That means I thought it wasn't there, and it wasn't that it was gone, but it was hidden underneath the Word of God. I wonder what word God has spoken over you that is hiding something you need in this season. I love how the Lord corrected Jeremiah. It's very brilliant how God does it. The Lord said, "Do not say, 'I am too young.' You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you. Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you…"

"Do you" takes on a little different significance when I Am is with me. Stylus drop. Now, why I really called him up here wasn't to help me with the stylus. We had an agreement before he came up here that he would help me with the sermon. You may recognize Graham from such sermons as God's Got Your Back, Part 1 and Don't Fight Your Future. Last time we were on the stage together, I let him get down on top of me and hold me down to represent all of the things that hold us down in our lives. He enjoyed that.

Today I'm going to do a different illustration, turn the tables a little bit. What we talked about is this idea that "You just do you," assuming that you've met you, factors out what God knows that you don't. I want to share with you something he did when he was really little. I was telling them the story of Jacob and Esau, and I was telling them how Jacob was grabbing Esau's heel, trying to get the birthright and the blessing. Do y'all know this story? Okay. I'll tell you the whole story one time, but I can't tell you the whole thing right now. I was telling them about the part where Esau was coming in from hunting and he was very hungry. Jacob, his brother, was a good cook. So, Esau came in hungry from hunting. Apparently he wasn't a very good hunter, because he didn't kill anything, or if he did kill something, it still wasn't cooked yet. So he's hungry. Jacob is like, "Hey, I've got a bowl of beans you can have. All you have to do is sell me your birthright".

They're bringing me a bowl right now. Thank you. Let's give it up for the brother with the bowl. I brought this from home. Many ramen noodles have been cooked in this very bowl. If you only knew. One time we destroyed a microwave cooking ramen noodles in a bowl. I don't know how Elijah did that. In exchange for a bowl of beans, Esau, who was the firstborn, sold his birthright to his brother and forfeited a blessing God intended for him to have all for a bowl of beans. My contention with a lot of us…not just young people, but a lot of us who have been Christians for a long time…is that we sell birthrights for bowls.

Now, we call it things that sound really good. You might have heard this called living your truth. I personally do not say that phrase, although I have nothing against the phrase. I just want to qualify it. Where did you get your truth from? If living your truth means repeating your experience, you are not a candidate for wisdom. Wisdom will always interrupt your experience to show you that what you always thought you were you actually were not, but God had put a seed inside of you that had not reached maturity yet in your life. Esau, out of his immaturity, as a grown man, sold what he could have been for a bowl. Now, by the time you get into the New Testament, Paul calls it something different.

Ephesians 4:22 says, "You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self…" That doesn't mean "Don't go down memory lane". That doesn't mean "Don't be who you were uniquely created to be". That doesn't mean "Don't enjoy the things that make you uniquely you". Here's what it means: that part of you that is being corrupted by its deceitful desires. The problem with you being you is that sometimes what you think you want is in conflict with who you really are. You will find yourself in many different states throughout any given day. I'm not calling you schizophrenic. I am saying by nature of the fact that you are a spirit that lives in a body, sometimes your body will try to get you to sell your birthright for a bowl.

Graham heard the story about Jacob and Esau. I shared with him how Jacob all of his life was trying to get a blessing that wasn't his by pretending to be something he was not, and he didn't have to, because God wanted to bless Jacob. I even shared the part where Jacob was blessing, and he grabbed his father's right hand and put it on his head, because the right hand was the right hand of blessing. He crossed his father's right hand and received the blessing that was reserved for the firstborn and stole it from Esau. I told him that story, and that night I was praying with Graham and Elijah before they went to bed. I felt Graham's hand grab my right hand. He put it on his head and said, "Just call me Jacob, sucker".

He was 5. I started praying for him. He's an amazing boy, and I see good things in his life, and I believe he has a birthright. I coach my boys, I coach my daughter, I have to coach myself, and I coach you this way: when you give up what you want most for what you want now, you're not doing you; you're being deceived. I can tell people are being deceived when they say stuff like, "Well, that's just how I am. I just go off. That's just how I am. I just say what I think". That is a bad strategy. Have you ever catalogued your thoughts? Not all of them are FDA approved. I believe this message is important to a generation that is running around saying things like, "Live your truth".

If he lives his truth, he's going to find himself in moments where it will feel true to him that "This temptation is stronger than my faith," but it's not. There will be moments where it'll feel to him like popularity is more important than calling, but it's not. There will be moments where he will feel that something is true, but what if what you feel is true is actually a trap? It's a trap. To act outside of the character God has placed inside of you and call that you is a trap. The Enemy has some of you trapped, and you don't know it. He has you trapped in the prison of what you call your personality. So, now you run around saying things like, "Well, that's just the kind of person I am".

Well, if the kind of person I am doesn't match the kind of God he is, I have to change some things and choose some things. Come on. God didn't tell Jeremiah, "Do you". God said, "I knew you". Steve Jobs has nothing on God. Steve Jobs made an iPad. God made a resurrection. The Bible says the same power that raised Christ from the dead lives in you. I remember being in high school. I don't know if I've told you this story before. Maybe I've told you it 10 times. Everybody was getting high, and I had never been high in my life. I was planning to get high that night. I remember feeling like, "I'm sick of being a good kid. I'm sick of being alone on Saturday nights. I'm sick of this. I'm going to actually do it tonight".

I remember when I grabbed it and went to smoke it, my friend slapped it out of my hand. He looked at me and said, "This isn't you". I came to Ballantyne, North Carolina, today to tell you "That's not you". Everything that's sabotaging you, I slap it out of your hand and declare, "That's not you". Every habit… That's not you. Look at your neighbor and say, "That's not you". (Don't slap them. I don't want to start anything.) When I feel it rising up in me to take me down, I slap it. I demolish strongholds. The weapons of my warfare are not carnal but they're mighty through God. This isn't you! Not the new you. See, we're confused, because we think that if it's automatic, that makes it authentic. I am not what I feel. I am not what I do. I am what God's Word says I am, and he is the Great I Am. This changed my life, because I wrote down the phrase do you, and then I said, "No, no. The new you…the you God says he knew".

So, maybe we should spell it differently. Maybe doing the new you means doing the knew you. Thank you, Jesus. You make all things new. Let's say I preach this to him, and I'm like, "Okay. So, don't just do what you want to do. Do what God tells you to do". So then you get out of the trap. I really think it's a trap to have an experience, form it into a belief, and then call it your truth. That's a trap. Then let's say you get out of the "do you" trap, only to… Bring my next illustration out. Now you're about to find out why I brought Graham up for the illustration. Let's say you get out of the "do you" trap. "I'm just doing me. I'm just being me. That's just how I am". Then you get out of the trap, the "do you" trap… "Just do you, boo-boo. Do you. Just do you".

You get out of that trap. You're like, "All right. I'm going to change". Now that the Devil sees you're out of the trap and you want to change and you want to get better and you're not happy with it exactly like it is… You get out of the "do you" trap, and you get onto the "future you" treadmill. How many didn't know this was a treadmill; you thought it was a coat rack? It's all how you use it. This is why I brought Graham on the stage. Now he's out of the trap, but now let's say self-discipline and religion puts him on a treadmill where he starts looking at, "Okay. I'm going to do the new me. I'm going to wake up at 5:00 a.m. My friend wakes up at 6:00 a.m. I'm going to get up at 5:00 a.m. I'm going to read five books of the Bible a day. Five alive".

How many of y'all started with a real New Year's energy going into a new 24? We realize we just take it a day at a time. I think the crazy thing is… I would do this illustration myself, but I'm wearing these boots. They're new. I can't crease these. They're new. I'm not messing these up. They're heavy. I'm not called to the cardio ministry anyway. I've told y'all that before. Here we go. Do the New You and…go. So now the Devil has some of us out there, not settling but striving. To do you, just do you and not let God have his say, and to commit and put yourself in concrete for what you've been up to this point is a trap. I know it looks like a bowl; it's a trap. I know this looks like walking, but he's not going anywhere. To just do you is to live your life cheated, but to get this idea in your mind that there is a future you God would love more or a future you God could use or a future you that would be worthy of love in a relationship or a future you that could feel good about yourself and your life, and it's just one accomplishment away, is to get out of the trap and onto the treadmill.

It's good as long as it's good, and it works as long as it works. I wonder if there are some people here who have been cheated because you've settled for what you thought you were. I also wonder if there are some people here who are chasing…chasing something you think you need to be because you saw somebody else be it, chasing something you scrolled past and thought it was the full story of what a happy family looked like, chasing after future you. It goes like this. "Yeah, boy. You're going to be great one day. All you've got to do is get through high school, and then you go to college. Now all you've got to do is get this degree. Now all you've got to do is find somebody who's actually hiring with that expensive degree that you're going to be paying off for the next 50 years".

Now I'm chasing, and I'm running. (I'm so glad I had kids so they could do this part of my illustrations now that my beard needs to be dyed.) So now I'm chasing, and it's great, but not only is it getting faster and faster and harder, but I look around and I realize, "I don't think I'm ever going to be anything but me". Here I am, thinking that somehow this collage… Watch. Here's what we do. We get a collage. Right? We get the person with all the money. We get the person with all of the girls. We get the person with all the success, with all of the followers. "Oh, if I had 1,000 followers".

Now you need 10,000. Beep! It just went up. Beep! It just went up. Here comes the incline. Now we've got social media. I didn't even have Twitter when I was a teenager, and it's not even called Twitter anymore, and my beard is gray, and I'm still chasing. "Well, maybe if I turn 50, I'll have wisdom. Maybe if I get through this, I'll be happy. And I'm going to rest when… And I'm going to feel good about myself when…" Before you know it… No, I'm going up. I'm going up. I'm going up. You're holding on. But the Bible says, "The word of the Lord came to me and said, 'Before you were formed I knew you.'" The word of the Lord came to me! The word of the Lord is coming to you right now. Out of the trap, off of the treadmill, and into the truth until the truth gets into you and you recognize, "I've been running after something that's already mine. I've just been living beneath its potential".

I'm already clean by his blood. I'm already saved by his grace. I'm already redeemed by his liberty. I'm already to the praise of his glorious grace. Why? Because I refuse to live cheated, and I refuse to live chasing, because I'm chosen. Say it. Get that word in your mouth…chosen. I love you, Holly, but I didn't pick you for that illustration, because I didn't know if you could last long enough on 12 for me to get the Scripture up. I'm not picking on you. You do a lot of amazing things. I didn't pick you for it. I picked somebody… I chose him because I knew that if he had to, he could beat me up. He's in wrestling shape. I'm telling you God chose you, and I'm saying he knew you. I want you to see the difference.

Close your eyes. You know how you've been chasing after something that you think when you get it, when you get there… "I'm going to do the new me. New year, new me". No, new year, same nose. But what if you've been running after something that is already yours? Perhaps the addiction is something the Enemy planted in your life because there is something so amazing inside of you that he wants your birthright, and you gave it away for a bowl. Perhaps God really is… Now I'm going to minister this, because this is me. This is me right here. Watch this. I sit there and go, "Well, I'm somebody who goes for it. I'm somebody who doesn't settle. I'm somebody who really demands the best out of myself. I'm somebody who wants to improve". That's fine. It's called self-righteousness.

When I talk like that and I don't receive by grace, I end up, like Graham almost was… (He's still breathing heavily up here. Don't let him fool you with his closed mouth. I hear him breathing.) I'm running after something. How long can I keep this up? I'm chasing, but I'm chosen. You don't have to chase it when you're chosen. You can walk in it. I mean, really walk, not on a treadmill of… You can walk with God, walk through your day, walk through your life. Your Father will speak to you. Your Father will slap stuff out of your hands. Your Father will look at you going so hard… When I wrote this book, I thought, "I don't want people to just see the title and go, 'Another one of those. Do the new me. What's so wrong with the old me?'" No, no, no. You're just not going back far enough. God told Jeremiah, "I'm going to call you to do a new thing". How many sense God is calling you to stretch your faith in new and unique ways that are nuanced to you?

See, God says, "Before I called you to do the new thing…" "Before you were born I knew you". That takes the pressure off of me, because it lets me know God is very, very comfortable with my process and he is partnering with me in the process. I am not chasing after a God who might love me when I kick this habit. I am not chasing after an achievement that might make me feel like my life is worthy. Listen to me, everybody who's not married right now. I am not chasing another person, thinking they will make me whole and fulfilled. I am not chasing an opportunity to collaborate in my business, thinking that will somehow then set me free. I'm already free, and I'm choosing to walk away from the bowl. I'm choosing, because God chose me. I believe God chose me to do this. I struggle with it. I doubt it sometimes.

Y'all, I was reading Jeremiah last night for our Bible club. (Shout-out Elijah and Kelsey over there in Lynchburg watching right now.) We're in Jeremiah right now over about the fourteenth or fifteenth chapter. By the way, if you read Jeremiah, chapter 1, verse 6, is about the high point. It gets really dark for the next 10 chapters. Isn't that crazy? God was calling him to do something hard. He said, "I know it's going to be hard. I know you're going to get up to speak sometimes…" We're not all called to speak, but we're all chosen. Do you need proof? Ephesians 1:4: "For he chose us in him before the creation of the world…" Whoa! He told Jeremiah, "You were chosen before you were born".

Paul takes it further. He said you were chosen before the world was born. Before God made what I see, he had a plan for me. Go to verse 11. They don't believe me yet. It takes a lot of Scripture to convince these people. They're kind of stubborn, Graham. "In him we were also chosen…" "That's fine for Jeremiah. I'm not called to speak". "In him (in Jesus) we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will". I'm worried that some of you are walking and running on a treadmill after things that aren't even in God's will for you. God chose you. Now comes the question…Will you? Which "you" will you choose? I have to decide this every day I wake up in my life. Am I going to choose the "me" I've seen so far or am I going to be open to the surprise of the Holy Spirit of God? You can probably sit down now. Didn't he do a great job?

I don't want to make him stay all day. Come on. He did a great job. A 16-year-old helping his dad preach. I was 16 when I really got serious about my faith that my mom raised me in. I made my commitment to Christ…16 years old. So, when I look at him, I think about that. It makes me want to cry all of the things God could do through him. But don't ever chase what they say you can be. If we did, I probably wouldn't be standing here today. When I was 16, Chris Dixon invited me to join the Voices of Unity choir at Berkeley High School where his mom, Martha Dickson, was the director and his cousin, Arturo, was the lead soprano. And Arturo was a boy. He had the highest voice of any boy I've ever heard in my life.

Here's the interesting thing about being invited to join the Voices of Unity choir. When I went to join the Voices of Unity choir… Y'all might remember the old show that said, "One of these things is not like the other. One of these things just doesn't belong". The only white guy in the Voices of Unity choir was me. I turned to Chris and said, "Are you sure you want me in the choir"? Because I noticed when everybody would start to rock one way, I would naturally rock the wrong way. I'm like, "Are you sure"? I loved it. I wanted to do it, but a few of my white friends were like, "Hey, what are you doing over there with them"? See, this is the problem with living your truth. Racists think they're right. The people who were telling me, "You don't belong in the choir" thought they were right…the white people. The black people were glad to have me in the choir. They actually simplified the march into the spring concert so I could be a part. They were very happy to have me.

Now when they ask me, "How do you have a multicultural church"? I'm glad Chris said, "We want you. We want you to sing with us. Come sing with us. No, not the one and the three; the two and the four. Come clap with us". If you would ever get with God and get in agreement with God and stop listening to what everybody else thinks can be, you might find out that God put something in you that eyes have not seen, that ears have not heard, that has not entered into the heart of a man. I wonder what's in you. And the white people mess up the clap. We couldn't even keep it going five seconds. But I love how this church is filled with uniqueness. Some of us praise loud, and some of us praise quiet. Some of us pray in tongues, and some of us pray in a journal. Some of us sing fast songs, and some of us worship the Lord to cantatas. Some of us are fluent in the Scriptures, and some of us are new to the Scriptures. But I know one thing about this church. You are a chosen people. You are a royal priesthood. You are a holy nation, a people belonging to God to declare the praises…

Let's take 10 seconds and declare the praises! My God is awesome. He rules in power. He makes the seas foam. He makes the waves roll. He makes the breakers dash. He makes the storm cease. He maketh my enemies like a footstool. He makes me lie down in green pastures. Look at you acting crazy. I thought I knew you. Maybe there's more in you than you knew. So, now we have work to do. We have to do Jeremiah 1:9. After Jeremiah got done doing his excuses… I'm going to give you a preview of next week's message. You'd better be back here next week, because I'm not even into it yet. You are shouting over the syllabus right now. Imagine what the class is going to be when we really get into this and get your mind set on things above. Do y'all remember how I was up here with a guitar two weeks ago, talking about tuning to truth? That's what we're going to do. We're going to get practical. I took six mindsets. I didn't even realize God was setting this up, but he knew.

There are six strings on an acoustic guitar, and there are six mindsets I will be sharing with you over the next six weeks. I'm going to give them to you, and I'm going to preach them to you. Next week, I'm going to talk to you about how to agree with God…how to agree with him about who he says you are, how to agree with him about what he says is still possible for you at this point in your life, how to agree with God about his priorities, how to agree with God about his values and stop agreeing with your limitations and stop arguing for your past. To do it, we have to get these six mindsets not only in your heart, but watch this. Verse 9. The Lord said, "I am putting my words in your mouth". I sat down last year, as I was teaching Do the New You beta version to the church, and I realized God was doing something. I began to write, "What are the things God says are true"?

Over the next six weeks, I want to take these six sayings… Jeremiah 1:4: "The word of the Lord came to me, saying…" What are you saying? Better question: Are you saying what God sees when you look in the mirror or what you see? What I want to walk you through in this message, as we gather together as an online community… We have resources. I want to give you the six declarations to make over your life so that not only do we get your mind right but we get your mouth right so you begin to say what God sees until you see it too…the new you. I'm bursting to share this with you. Do you feel like I'm about to blow up and be in little pieces all over the fourth row of the church? I am, because this is in me, because I need this. I hold bowls sometimes, and I'm cheated…cheated out of what I could be, cheated out of what I could see, cheated of the example I could set, cheated of the freedom I could experience, cheated of the chain that could break. Then I put that bowl down, and I start chasing until I fall out and realize it is by the grace of God that I am what I am.

Did you know Paul said that? "By the grace of God I am what I am". So, I'm choosing to live chosen. God chose you. Will you? Will you choose you even though you know you? I'll be honest. If I was picking somebody to make a difference in the world, I probably wouldn't pick me, but God did. I wonder what he knows about my brokenness that he can use to bring a balm. I'm looking at lives today that look like iPads, brand new out of the box, and I'm wondering, "What could it be if it got in the right hands"? The six mindsets go like this. Shout-out to my man Dave Ulrich who got an early copy of the book. He put them on his mirror, and he sent me a picture and said, "This book is going to change lives, Pastor. Let's go". He wrote each of them out on a Post-it note. He didn't even know we have a stack of Post-it notes for all of you today with these six mindsets on them. You're going to get it if you're here.

If you're online, you'd better write them down right now and make your own Post-it note. Repeat after me. First mindset: "I'm not stuck unless I stop". We're going to talk about that next week, what's blocked you from becoming, what's blocked you from believing. We're going to talk about that from the Scriptures, and the Holy Spirit will minister it to you. The second one says… You've heard this if you've been around my church for a while. "Christ is in me. I am enough". I hope you're repeating these in the comments right now. I want you to say it out loud. I want you to type it. I want you to write it. I want you to receive it. "Christ is in me. I am enough". Here's one you've heard before: "With God there's always a way, and by faith I will find it". Yeah, you're going to find it. You think there is no way. You just haven't seen it yet.

The word of the Lord is coming to you. This is what I tell myself before I preach to you: "God is not against me, but he's in it with me, working through me, fighting for me". We might write a song about that. Already did. Fifth, "My joy is my job". You might not like that week. You might want to skip that week. I'll put the responsibility on you that week. Then this is really important to believe: "God has given me everything I need for the season I'm in". Now, if we get you tuned to this, this truth, you will never be the same. I want to pray for you right now. The word of the Lord came to you today, didn't it? It came to me too, saying, "Before I formed you I knew you". I feel like we need to connect. Would you either grab the hand or put your hand on the shoulder of the person next to you?

First of all, Lord, we thank you that we're not chasing your love, acceptance, or grace. It has been given to us by your Son Jesus Christ. We thank you, Lord, that this is the last day we will believe the deceitful desires. We may still struggle with them, but from this day forward we are oriented toward truth. Your truth will make us free. God, today we thank you that we are chosen by you, and now we chose to put ourselves in the path of your power today. Because we did, you spoke a word, and this word is now received in our hearts. I declare rain for the seed that was sowed today, for the words that were spoken. I decree and declare an increase of righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. I thank you that our eyes have not seen, nor have our ears heard, nor has it entered into the heart of a man what you have prepared for those who love you, but you have revealed it by your Spirit. I thank you for revelation, and I thank you for grace to change, and I thank you that you are making all things new. In Jesus' name, amen.

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