Steven Furtick - The Power of The Prompt
Welcome today to all of our locations. Can we thank God for all of our campuses and location? I said, can we thank God for all of our campuses and locations? Amen! I was doing my stalker thing, where I go around to all the campuses, pushing buttons with cameras, that are set up in the auditoriums, I've been on. Do I look tired? I was on a trip, I went to Asheville and Columbia, and I even went to Toronto for a minute, all through technology of course, before I came out to see you. So I'm a little jet lagged, but thank God for the great work He's doing, also with our eFam around the world, and our interns, our fall 2018 interns. Come on, thank God for them, thank God for their wardrobes, for their sense of style and fashion.
I'm gonna tell you, why they're up here in a minute, I'm gonna keep you in suspense, but one thing that I really always feel good about, is when I'm doing exactly what I know God wants me to do, when I stand up here on the stage, and as we get ready for next weekend, which is going to be phenomenal, where so many people around the world and here at our church locally are going to participate in our Gamechanger offering. Where we get to bring God something of significance and value to us. And we all get to make that opportunity count, to invest something in what can't be taken away, as we have so many times before. As we get ready for that, I pray and I try to see how God wants me to preach, that would position us, each of us, for the season that He's taking us into. And that's important to me not to follow a formula, it's important to me. I'm not saying there's anything wrong with doing it the same way every time, because you know, we take up these offerings for expansion, and we use so much of it for outreach, each year. So I guess it would be fine, if I just repeated the pattern each year, but maybe it's just my personality, I can't do that. And even more than that, I don't want to start trusting in some kind of formula, I guess that's the best way to say it. If I'm gonna preach about faith, I want to demonstrate faith in the way, that I preach about what I'm preaching about. So does that make sense?
Anyway, whether it made sense or not, here's what I'm gonna do today, because when I was praying about what we should do, as we set up what's gonna happen next weekend and I pray, that you would not skip church next weekend, you know, some people will always do that, like it's gonna be a guilt trip - it's not, it's not, like there's gonna be a cover charge next week or something like that, it's for everyone, but it'll be really beautiful, it'll be special. But this week is probably the most important, because this is where we set it up. And any good comedian can tell you, that the setup is often more important than the punchline. But there's nothing funny about the Word of God.
So let's go to the Word of God today. I want to share the same scripture, just a few verses if I drop, a few verses down, from what I shared last week. Did you get to hear the message last weekend? It's mine to manage. Touch somebody say: it's God's to give, but it's mine to manage. And I talked about this concept, that we are stewards of the story. The story of how God has saved us and how God has sustained us. And as a pastor, I'm coming to understand my role more and more, as a steward of the story, that God is telling through this church. And it's God's story, but it's ours to manage - so powerful.
And so, let me get into this real quick, and this would be a little different today, I think you can tell that. I'm excited, I'm really excited, but I'm sitting down, I'm seated. So I'm not gonna scream as much, those of you, who don't like all that, anyway this is your weekend, and I'm just gonna talk to you a little bit today, you laughed a little too much of that, made me feel self-conscious. I might holler once or twice, but I really just want to talk to you. And I got all this stuff in my Bible and I tell you what it all is in a moment. Some notes and some money and I'll tell you about that, and an envelope, and some post-it notes, and we'll get to all that in a moment, but first let me read this. This is so important as a backdrop for what I believe God wants to give you, as a back story today. Every blessing has a back story, okay? Every blessing has a back story, and so this is one for the nation of Israel.
Joshua 4:19, "On the tenth day of the first month the people went up from the Jordan and camped at Gilgal on the eastern border of Jericho. And Joshua set up at Gilgal the 12 stones they had taken out of the Jordan". Now, they're not in the Promised Land yet, but God is setting them up. And as a part of the setup, it's kind of elaborate God, it's like: hey, take the stones from the Jordan, which represents the miracle, that I just did for you, and set it up. And then, after you set up the stones, this is the purpose of them, they're not just props, I don't want you to just collect these stones for props, and put them in a trophy case somewhere, but rather than just trophies, these are triggers. These stones that you set up, because I'm not done with you yet, and there's a great thing, that I'm doing through you, and so, I want to use the stones as a set up.
And then watch verse 21, it gives the purpose, "He said to the Israelites, 'In the future when your descendants asked their parents'". Now stop right there, he's teaching them to think generationally, he's teaching them not to just settle for instant gratification and what's in it for me. So "'In the future when your kids are asking, 'What do these stones mean?', tell them'". Tell them, they're important, because the stones can't speak for themselves, right? This is not like Siri: hey, Siri, bring me lemonade. This is not that kind of thing, this is not some magic trick. You've got to speak and tell them. When they see the stones, "Tell them". I love this stuff, I love these Old Testament stories so much. "Tell them, "Israel crossed the Jordan on dry ground.' For the Lord your God dried up the Jordan before you until you had crossed over. The Lord your God did to the Jordan what He had done to the Red Sea when He dried it up before us until we had crossed over".
Every generation is to experience their own move of God. Not just worship something God did in the past, but to move forward into the future full of faith. And so, I want to speak to you for a few moments today on The Power of the Prompt. If you'd like to write that down, it's just a little title, that I'm giving the message. If you wouldn't like to write it down, it's still the title that I'm giving the message: The Power of the Prompt.