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Watch 2022-2023 online sermons » Steven Furtick » Steven Furtick - God Will Restore You

Steven Furtick - God Will Restore You

Steven Furtick - God Will Restore You
TOPICS: Easter, Restoration

This is an excerpt from: Found Fishing

God sent me to speak to somebody this Easter. You're waiting for God to reveal to you what he has next for you. You don't really know what that is. You know he has risen, and you know he's real. You believe in God, and you trust in God, and you have a relationship with God. You believe he's capable, and you believe he's great and the stone is rolled away. That's fine, but the stone can be rolled away and you still be stuck.

Now listen to me. This word is not for the people who know exactly what God has planned for you to do. You're like, "Right, because then I'd be dead. I'd be in heaven". Exactly! This is an in-between Bible story where Jesus is risen, but what he has for me has not yet been revealed. This is such an amazing story for us to think about, because in the light of the empty tomb, Peter still hasn't personally been restored yet to the Savior he denied just a few nights ago. It has only been a few nights, remember, since Peter warmed himself by the fire and said, "I don't even know Jesus". It has only been a few nights since he cursed and said, "I don't know what you're talking about. Jesus who"? It has only been a short time since he denied the very one he pledged his allegiance to, his undying discipleship to. It hasn't been that long.

So, not only is he uncertain about the future, but he's still dealing with that thing within himself that kind of feels like, "I let him down". Even though Peter has seen Jesus risen, he hasn't yet received personal restoration for it yet. He knows what Jesus did. "He died for my sins". He knows what Jesus did. "He rose from the grave". But the question isn't what he did; it's "What do I do"? I believe God sent me for a message for a person who's saying, "I know what he did, and I believe in what he did, but I came this Sunday morning wanting to know 'What do I do?'"

As a matter of fact, it's more specific than that. It's a message for somebody who's wondering, "Can he still use me? Does he still want me? Is there still time left for this to be turned around or have I wasted my chance? Did I miss my opportunity? Did I blow it so badly I can't recover? Is the addiction too strong now? Is the hurt too deep now? Did I watch it walk away, and I should have stopped it, but I couldn't? Did I miss it? Is it over for me? I know he got up and the grave is empty, but I kind of feel empty too, because I'm not sure what's next for me". It's an in-between message for in-between people. Raise your hand if you're in between right now. Everybody not raising their hand needs a class on self-awareness, honesty… Do you know what they need? They need a good flat tire after church. I pray a nail under your front right tire on the way home from church. Lying to the Lord like that on his holy resurrection birthday Sunday.

I want to take up for Peter for a moment, just for a moment, and take up for every person under the sound of my voice who believes that what he did is awesome, but there are some things you've done that make you wonder. No, no, no. I'm not talking about just big things. "I've never killed anybody". Neither did Peter. I think the challenge of getting through to you with a message like this… We kind of want an abstract message about resurrection without having to do the real, deep work of saying, "Okay. How do I make this idea that Jesus got up from the dead more than just a special occasion where I take Mom to church once a year, and then I have to come back on Mother's Day too? Sheesh! This is all kind of stacking up. Those are kind of close together".

How do I take this thing of a relationship with God and a resurrected Savior and get it beyond the point of being a special occasion and make it the operating system of my life? How do I get it down deep in me? That's what Peter needs in this moment. He needs a deep encounter with a risen Savior, and he's about to have one. So are you. The Lord spoke to me. He's going to do for somebody today what he did for Peter back then. He's going to restore you. Today, he gave me a very specific word. He said, for some of you, this is going to be a reset Sunday. You all never played the original Nintendo Entertainment System, but if you're playing Punch-Out, and you're getting beat badly enough, the only thing left to do is hit that button that says, "Reset".

I brought my Bible today so maybe we could find a reset button in the Word of God and find a reset button in your situation and find a reset button on this Easter Sunday. Somebody shout, "I'm ready". Say, "I'm ready for a reset". "I don't want to stay just where I was. I don't want to stay just in what I did. I don't want to just carry shame. If he's not in the grave, why is this shame on me? If he's not in the grave, why won't this depression let me go? If he's not in the grave, why am I looking for the living among the dead? I'm ready". When the reset comes, it means there's going to be a brand-new "you" for you to look at in the mirror on Monday morning. I want a Sunday resurrection to get in a Monday morning mirror so that when you look in the mirror tomorrow morning, you say, "Hello, let's go. God has something in store for me". This is reset Sunday.

So, Peter said, "I'm going fishing". They said, "Peter shouldn't have even still had his boat. Why did he keep his boat? See? Peter didn't have real faith. That's why he kept his boat. He followed Jesus, and he left his nets, but he kept his boat, because he wanted a backup plan in case it didn't work out. Then when it didn't work out and Jesus went to the cross, he went back to his boat. If you really want to follow God, you've got to get rid of your boat and burn your bridges and go forward and don't let anything stop you". He kept his boat so he could drive Jesus around so he could preach from it! I don't think he was running from Jesus. I think he was looking for him in the last place he felt confident in his calling. I think Peter was tired of sitting around wishing he didn't do what he did.

You know you can spend the rest of your life wishing and call it repentance? Wishing you didn't do it isn't repenting, and feeling guilty about it doesn't make God feel better about it. He died for all that stuff. So, when Peter said, "I'm going fishing," I don't hear it like he's saying, "I quit. This is stupid. He didn't even tell us what to do next. He dies on us and rises from the dead and makes us look bad because we all ran…except you, John, the one he loves". I love how John gets that in there. He said, "The one he loved turned to Peter and said…" He's talking about himself. I love it.

Now watch this. In your mind you have to smell the fish. You have to smell the fish Jesus is already cooking on the shore. That's verse 9. I didn't read that to you, because I'm on a clock today, and I can't get to verse 9 today, but maybe I will put it on my YouTube channel. Y'all, I've been putting these extra sermons on my YouTube channel. You have to go subscribe. It's these little teachings. I'm going to put more of them out just to help you really get the Word of God, to break it down. It's called The Basin. You have to look for it soon. I might put a part 2 on The Basin. But for today, I just want to talk about…What was Peter looking for when he went fishing? He said, "I'm going fishing," and they said, "All right. We've got nothing better to do". The Spirit hasn't come yet. Jesus hasn't ascended yet. It's that in-between period. "We don't know the next thing. He hasn't told us our next assignment".

So, what do you do when you know what he did, but you can't get over what you did, and you don't know what he's calling you to do? Go fishing. I know it's a controversial Easter message. You used to hear everybody preach about Peter going fishing like he made the wrong move. I think that's the exact right thing to do. See, three years earlier Peter went fishing. Three years earlier, he cast his nets all night long and caught nothing. Three years earlier, he pulled his boat on the shore, and he was cleaning his nets. This wonder-working rebel priest named Jesus Christ of Nazareth pulled up on him and said, "Can I use your boat to fish? But I'm not fishing for what you're fishing for. I need to catch some people". Peter was like, "Uh, is that legal? Do you have a license for that"? He was like, "Yeah, I have the license. I'm the Lord of heaven and earth. I am the Word that existed before time began. I am the Word made flesh dwelling among… I've got a license to fish. Push out a little".

They pushed out a little, and Jesus preached a little. Then he said, "Now push out a little more," and they pushed out. Jesus said, "Now that I've got what I'm looking for, I'm going to show you what you're looking for. Throw down your nets". When they dragged them up, Peter wasn't happy; he was scared. He said, "Oh, no! This is bad. If you knew those fish were in that water, you know the sin that's in me". And he fell down at Jesus' feet and said, "Go away from me, Lord. I'm a sinful man". Jesus said, "I'm not going anywhere but inside of you to show you what I put in you. I'm going to make you a fisher of men". He knows what's in you, the good and the bad. He knows what's in you, the gifts and the weaknesses. He knows what's in you, the trauma and the testimony. He knows what's in you and chooses you and calls you.

That was three years ago, three years before that moment Peter would deny him, three years before that point that Peter would disappoint him, three years before he would let him down. Three years have gone by, and Jesus has done amazing things, including but not limited to the healing and opening of blinded eyes; including but not limited to the loosing of tongues; including but not limited to the raising of dead people after their body was already stinking and covered in maggots and wrapped in grave clothes, and everybody else gave up and started crying and went home to comfort the sisters. He did all of that, and Peter denied him. Peter said, "I'm going fishing". It makes you wonder. Was he fishing because he lost his faith or was he fishing so he could find it again?

"I remember three years ago when I let him use my boat. I remember three years ago when I put out a little and he started teaching. I'd never heard anybody teach like he taught. He taught with authority, but he was gentle, but he was commanding". Maybe Peter wasn't saying, "I'm giving up". Maybe he was saying, "I'm going back". Before we judge him, before we penalize him, before we tell him how he should have sold his boat, and we don't even come to church when it's rainy outside… (Look straight ahead. They won't know I'm talking about you. Watch the screen. Watch the screen.) Peter said, "I'm going fishing, because I was fishing when he called me". If you don't know what to do, do what you know to do. But don't run from what God has put right in front of you.
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