Steven Furtick - Why Escaping Won't Fix It
This is an excerpt from “Good Morning Midnight.”
God said, "I want you to take the experiences that could have taken you out this year but didn't, and I want you to get twelve of them". One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten, eleven, twelve. I didn't count those before I preached. I'm just glad that worked out. I just went for it. I felt like maybe God was saying, "I need you to get 12". There are twelve tribes of Israel. It's the number of government. It's the number of order. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten, eleven, twelve. "According to the tribes, get one man from each of the tribes and get them to get a stone". I don't think God would mind if we modernized the text for New Year's Eve because we don't have 12 tribes of Israel necessarily, but we have January, February, March, April, May… Let's see. Every month this year taught me something. June taught me something. July taught me something. August taught me something. September taught me something.
Touch somebody and say, "I'm coming out with something". I learned something in October. I learned something in November. I learned something in December. I'm going back to January, and I'm going to remember how God blessed me, how God gave me joy in January and faith in February and mercy in March, and he worked on my attitude in April, and in May he… I don't know anything else that starts with an M, but I'm not leaving this year without carrying something out of it. I love this part. What could have been rock bottom became their stepping stone. Please help me preach this sermon. Please help me preach this sermon. I could have drowned in the waters, but God drove them back, and now I'm walking on what was sent. I have something on my shoulder I'm carrying out at sea. Everything taught me something this year. That's how you leave 2015 with no regrets. It's that the thing that appeared to be rock bottom actually becomes a stepping stone. It's not that I would have chosen it, but since I can't change it, I might as well step on it. See?
There are a whole lot of things that happen to me that I wouldn't have wanted to have to walk on, but I didn't accept Christ, and I didn't sign up to follow him just to get through. I need a faith that gets over. It wasn't that God brought them through the Jordan. It's that he brought them over the Jordan. There's a difference. That ark had a cherubim on one side and a cherubim on the other side, and God said, "I'll meet you between those cherubim, above the ark. Above it". I want to celebrate tonight, not just that I got through it, but that I got over it. I want God to help me with this because it hit me during worship to tell me that when I get to this specific point, there is something you keep tripping over in your life, memory, addiction… I would love to say that tonight, as you cross over into new land, that thing is going to leave you alone forever. I would love to say that. Don't clap because I can't tell you that.
Do you remember when Jesus healed this man who was lying on the mat? After he healed him, he didn't let the man do away with his mat. He just let him pick it up and carry it over? The thing that used to hold you is still here, but it doesn't hold you anymore because you're not under it. You're over it. If you have this kind of faith, if you have something in your life you keep tripping over, I want you to stand up on your feet, something you've been tripping over. When I say, "Three," what I want you to do… It's symbolic. You don't have to do it, but if you have something you've been tripping over that God has called you to triumph over… I'm going to do it just like God told me. He told me to tell you that when I say, "Three," pick your foot up and put it down. When I say, "Three," and you pick your foot up and put it down… Come on, on every campus. This is for Matthews. This is for Lake Norman. This is for Blakeney. This is for Toronto. This is online. You might be watching this on your iPhone. I don't care what your grandma thinks about it in the other room. It doesn't even matter because this moment is for you.
There is something in your life that you've been stumbling over. It has been a stumbling block to you, but it's about to become a stepping stone. Watch this. When I say, "Three," only if you have faith, pick your foot up and put it down when I say, "Three," and shout, "I'm over it". On three. One, two, three. "I'm over it". I want to do it again. I want to do it again. Hold on. This time, I want you to get that thing on your mind. You know, that thing you can't tell your neighbor about, the personal thing, the thing that almost became your deathbed this year, that thought pattern, that attraction, that proclivity, that thing. All right? Do you have it? On three, pick your foot up and put it down and shout, "I'm over it". One, two, three. "I'm over it". I don't know. I think we need a third time to do it. Good things happen in threes. This time, I want you to consider in Hebrews 2 where it said that God took everything and put it under Jesus' feet.
I want you to remember how that ark of the covenant represents Jesus with divinity underneath gold, with humanity underneath gold, with humanity underneath divinity. I want you to realize that he has raised you up to heavenly places with Christ. On three. One, two, three. "I'm over it". "Sorrow came into my life this year, but I got over it. Depression came into my life this year, but I got over it. Shame came into my life this year, but I got over it. Disappointment came into my life this year, but I got over it. I got over it. I got over it. I'm over it. I'm over it. I'm over it. It doesn't hold me. It doesn't have me. It can't hold me. I'm over it. I'm over it". I'm sorry. Do you hear that, Devil? I'm over it. Get under my feet. Get under my… I'm over it. I had some insecurity, but I'm over it. I had some fear that kept me from being the father I wanted to be, but I'm over it. It's not that I'm expecting it to go away. It's just that I'm going to carry it with me, and it can't tell me where to stop. I'm over it. I'm over it. That's the word. I'm over it.
You have to get it in your heart. "They hurt me, but I'm over it. What they said about me, I'm over it. I don't believe that anymore. What they did to me, I'm over it. In fact, they don't even have to apologize to me. If they don't ever apologize, I'm over it. I'm over it". Everything that stood against me, Jesus put a cross over it. You didn't hear me. Everything that was pushing against me to try to get me back into darkness, Jesus put a cross over it. That's why my faith looks forward, because I have a cross over my past, and whatever I've been through, he delivered me from the power of it. I'm over it. I have a Joshua. His name is Jesus. I'm not standing at the Jordan anymore because I have a faith that points back. Come on. You have to try this. This is fun. Just point back one time.
Don't look back. Don't look back. While your faith is looking forward, let your finger point back. Whatever you're pointing at that God brought you through is now the evidence of his faithfulness for where he's taking you. Come on. Point back. How many have something you can point back on from this year? When I look back over my life and see all of the doors he has opened for me, when I look back over my life and see all of the ways he kept me and all of the ways he blessed me, the same God who delivered me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear… I have a faith that looks forward and points back. I'm pointing back to remind the Devil of why I'm confident moving forward. Now, you've been getting this backward, and that's why you're stuck. You've been pointing forward. "One day, I'm going to…" Tonight is the night that you're crossing over in your mind.