BETTER TOGETHER: Shifting Into Heaven

SHIFTING INTO HEAVEN

Luke 1:26–27 (ESV) 26 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, 27 to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary.

Everyone in this room is involved in at least one earthly shift - we are a new church family! You will engage in many earthly shifts throughout your life, for all of the good benefits attached, and rightfully so. In those moments it’s important to see beyond the natural and into the supernatural realm so that you recognize Heaven’s agenda that is part of the shift you make here on earth. Shifting through the natural and into Heaven’s agenda will allow you to experience all that God has for you!

  • Don’t shift only into the natural: new location, additional leaders, cool new signs….

  • Shift beyond the natural agenda into heaven’s agenda for you - faith, ministry, etc

1. Earthly Shifts Pull Emotional Triggers

Ever had someone shift unexpectedly and dump your coffee all over your lap? Earthly shifts will always attack your emotional weak spots in an attempt to derail God’s best in your life.

  • Mary is experiencing an earthly shift, and likely all the emotions attached!

  • Leaving family to marry a man

  • Likely an arranged marriage to an older man

  • Moving from her family’s home to his home

  • She was a virgin…


It is likely that everyone has experienced some uneasiness during a shift. What really makes it unsettling is that most shifts happen void of an audible voice from heaven - that would give everyone 100% confidence

  • Earthly Shifts Happen: 1) Commanded To Shift; 2) Get To Shift; 3) Forced To Shift

  • Mary is likely shifting, likely for reason 2 or 3


Remember, MY EMOTIONS MAY BE REAL, BUT ARE OFTEN NOT BASED ON GOD’S TRUTH. THEY TEND TO BE MY NATURAL RESPONSE TO THE ENEMY’S LIE!

FAITH is not the absence of uncertainty or doubt! It’s the decision to take steps in spite of those feelings into the better future that God has for you!


2. Shift With 100% Confidence, IN HIM!

Psalm 37:23–24 (ESV) 23 The steps of a man are established (FIRM) by the LORD, when he delights in his way; 24 though he fall, he shall not be cast headlong, for the LORD upholds his hand.

  1. Following after The LORD is always the RIGHT path forward (HE IS GOOD, HE IS FOR ME, MY BEST IS IN HIS HEART!)

  2. FALLING is an earthly reality - poor choice, unforseen circumstance, attack,

  3. He Is Committed To Upholding Me!


Make the best choice you can, and be all in! Circumstances beyond your control? Run through the flames - He Is With You!

3. Shift Fully Into Heaven’s Agenda!

  • Mary was shifting into marriage on earth, but her shift unlocked heaven’s destiny!

  • Angels appeared, Martha prophesied, the priest recognized!!!

  • See beyond the natural as you shift

    • New job

    • New school

    • New church

    • New community

    • New church

  • Fight to see the tomorrow impact


Closing

Mark 1:17 (ESV) 17 And Jesus said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you become fishers of men.”

  • Shift Into Following Jesus

  • Shift Into Heaven’s Agenda

BETTER TOGETHER: Embracing "Suddenly"

(AUDIO NOT AVAILABLE)

Acts 2:1–4; 41 (ESV) 1 When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. 2 And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. 3 And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance. 41 So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls.

SUDDENLY in the Bible speaks of:

  • The normal course of life

  • Interrupted by God

  • With an unexpected experience/opportunity

  • Requiring an individual response

  • That leads to His supernatural outcome

SUDDENLY for Acts 2 Believers:

  • 120 disciples on day 10 of a prayer retreat taking place in secret

  • SUDDENLY - a sound like wind, filled the house

  • God’s Presence entered the room - the Holy Spirit rested upon them!\

  • They leaned into the moment with a resounding YES!!!

  • The supernatural outcome: the Spirit filled them, empowered them, theywent downstairs into the marketplace, 3000 were saved/baptized

Today is a SUDDENLY moment for YOU, for US, & THEM

A SUDDENLY For You

Acts 18:26–28 (ESV) 26 He began to speak boldly in the synagogue, but when Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately. 27 And when he wished to cross to Achaia, the brothers encouraged him and wrote to the disciples to welcome him. When he arrived, he greatly helped those who through grace had believed, 28 for he powerfully refuted the Jews in public, showing by the Scriptures that the Christ was Jesus.

Acts 2:3 3 And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them.

While they were together, there was a SUDDENLY

In that SUDDENLY there was a a personal impartation.

God will impart a new level of anointing, influence, capacity and grace in the SUDDENLY

What God wants for you always requires a SUDDENLY

To embrace the new you must let go of the old

Your SUDDENLY requires your will. A choice and a decision.

Nobody can make the choice for you.

It not just that WE are BETTER TOGETHER… YOU are BETTER because WE ARE TOGETHER!

A SUDDENLY For Us

When SUDDENLY happens, it’s rarely just a you moment. It’s almost always an US moment.

Act 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.

The SUDDENLY was a corporate experience.

Their SUDDENLY created a unifying experience that bound people together.

Just imagine being one of those that choose to stand by and miss what God was doing in that moment!! - REGRETS!

Yet in that moment those that Stepped into their SUDDENLY together experienced something that had never been seen before

Vs 10 “we hear them telling in our own tongues the mighty works of God.”

Together they were speaking EVERY LANGUAGE. They couldn't do it alone!

There impact was far greater because they stepped into their SUDDENLY together!

Together, those that received the SUDDENLY became the foundation of His Church - emboldened and empowered by the Holy Spirit.

It not just that YOU are BETTER because we are TOGETHER… WE are BETTER because WE ARE TOGETHER!

A Suddenly For Them

Acts 2:41 So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls.

It wasn't just about what God wanted to do FOR them, He had an even greater plan THROUGH them.

In embracing their SUDDENLY, thousands of peoples lives were impacted.

Our SUDDENLY today isn't just about us … it's about what God is doing through us. In our Community.

It not just that YOU and I are BETTER because we are TOGETHER… Our Entire Community will be BETTER because WE ARE TOGETHER!

Your Response:

Every wedding has tons of preparation but it requires a SUDDENLY moment: Do You? Yes! Do You? Yes! They kiss and then I say “I now pronounce that you are…”

Our Executive Team has had a SUDDENLY moment, and we leaned forward in faith with our public declaration that we were leaving who we were so that we could become BETTER TOGETHER.

Then, our church families had a SUDDENLY moment. And they leaned forward in faith with their public declaration that they were leaving who they were so they could become BETTER TOGETHER

Today is your SUDDENLY moment.

  • You were simply doing the good thing that you do

  • Your world was interrupted with an unexpected announcement one day at church

  • Here you are, with us, in God’s Presence!

  • We want to invite you to respond to to your SUDDENLY moment - we want to invite you to lean forward in faith and make your public declaration that you are leaving who you were so you can become BETTER TOGETHER.

As you do, BETTER TOGETHER will be BETTER for YOU, BETTER for US and BETTER for THEM!

Tribal Stew

TRIBAL STEW

  • Psalm 34:8 (ESV) 8 Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him

  • Genesis 25:29–34 (ESV) 29 Once when Jacob was cooking stew, Esau came in from the field, and he was exhausted. 30 And Esau said to Jacob, “Let me eat some of that red stew, for I am exhausted!” 34 Then Jacob gave Esau bread and lentil stew, and he ate and drank and rose and went his way. Thus Esau despised his birthright.

  • 2 Kings 4:39–41 (ESV) 39 One of them went out into the field to gather herbs, and found a wild vine and gathered from it his lap full of wild gourds, and came and cut them up into the pot of stew, not knowing what they were. 40 And they poured out some for the men to eat. But while they were eating of the stew, they cried out, “O man of God, there is death in the pot!” And they could not eat it.

TRIBE: a group of people with common values and a common language that develops a common culture (flavor) as they gather.

There are many NATURAL TRIBES: groups of friends, clubs, teams, causes, work, etc.

  • As they function they create a STEW enjoyed by TRIBE that attracts.

  • The STEW created hopefully makes life better for everyone involved.

There is one SUPERNATURAL TRIBE: the Kingdom of Heaven, the local church.

  • As they function they create a STEW enjoyed by TRIBE that attracts.

  • The STEW created does more than make life better for everyone involved.

  • It gives life.

  • It gives abundant life, concentrated

  • The abundant life it give is so strong it eradicates death!!!

1. GOD Is Experienced In OUR In Tribal Stew

As we TRIBE, we don’t just make any stew. We make THE STEW.

Our stew doesn’t make life better. It injects life abundant and eradicates death

It does this because the TRIBAL STEW super-ingredient, is HIM

  • John 10:10 (ESV) …I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.

While HE is the only ingredient necessary, HE has decided to make himself known to others as TRIBE gathers and as STEW is cooked.

  • Matthew 1:23 (ESV) 23 “Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel” (which means, God with us).

He is experienced as we TRIBE!!!

  • John 12:32 (ESV) 32 And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.”

To see this any other way is to limit the impact of our TRIBALNESS!

Illus: Ponce de Leon/Fountain of Youth - always looking but never satisfied!

HIS value is so obvious once HE is tasted by those who have never tasted before!

Isaiah 55:1–2 (ESV) 1 “Come, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; and he who has no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without price. 2 Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your labor for that which does not satisfy? Listen diligently to me, and eat what is good, and delight yourselves in rich food.

As a first generation Christian, HE was so convincing that every decision post-taste has been impacted by that taste, and has produced, as promised, LIFE!!!

2. Your Participation Creates The Supporting Ingredients

Regardless of role, each of our lives significantly add to the stew as we participate.

Darren: “Your Thereness Matters”

While HE is the only thing people really need, HE has decided to make himself known as TRIBE happens and as STEW is cooked.

Jesus is the super-ingredient. In order for people to TASTE HIM, you have to see yourself as one of MASTER CHEF’s in the kitchen, critical to making the stew!

  • Matthew 14:15–18 (ESV) 15 Now when it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a desolate place, and the day is now over; send the crowds away to go into the villages and buy food for themselves.” 16 But Jesus said, “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.” 17 They said to him, “We have only five loaves here and two fish.”

It’s critical for you HIM as the super-ingredient HE is

It’s also critical for you to recognize yourself as the Master Chef HE says you are.

3. “How We Cook” Is The Flavor That Attracts

Attractive Stew - Genesis 25:29–34 (ESV) 29 Once when Jacob was cooking stew, Esau came in from the field, and he was exhausted. 30 And Esau said to Jacob, “Let me eat some of that red stew, for I am exhausted!” (Therefore his name was called Edom.) 31 Jacob said, “Sell me your birthright now.” 32 Esau said, “I am about to die; of what use is a birthright to me?” 33 Jacob said, “Swear to me now.” So he swore to him and sold his birthright to Jacob. 34 Then Jacob gave Esau bread and lentil stew, and he ate and drank and rose and went his way. Thus Esau despised his birthright.

Unattractive Stew - 2 Kings 4:39–41 (ESV) 39 One of them went out into the field to gather herbs, and found a wild vine and gathered from it his lap full of wild gourds, and came and cut them up into the pot of stew, not knowing what they were. 40 And they poured out some for the men to eat. But while they were eating of the stew, they cried out, “O man of God, there is death in the pot!” And they could not eat it. 41 He said, “Then bring flour.” And he threw it into the pot and said, “Pour some out for the men, that they may eat.” And there was no harm in the pot.

I am 100% confident in the super-ingredient, HIM!

I am 100% confident and the supporting ingredients, YOU!

I am 100% confident that we can COOK in a way that is attractive with the following:

  • A Spirit Of Yes - Ephesians 4:29 (ESV) 29 Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.

  • A Passion That Leans In - Mark 12:30 (ESV) 30 And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’

  • The Sine-Cera Sticker: NO WAX - Matthew 6:2 (ESV) 2 “Thus, when you give to the needy, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward.

  • Whistling While WORKING - Genesis 1:28 (ESV) 28 And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

  • Fruit Of The Spirit - Galatians 5:22–23 (ESV) 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.

  • Love - 1 Corinthians 13:4–7 (ESV) 4 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant 5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. 7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Closing:

We are stepping into a new season of cooking, in an even better kitchen to make an even better STEW!!!

Our churches have cast a huge vision that we have already started to step into, the pots our stew will be delivered in:

  • Coming Together As One

  • Community Events

  • $2.5 million facility project

  • Fill our new room that can hold about 500 people and start a second room, and a third, and a fourth

  • NOW - prayer that is the engine to fuel it all!!!

This will all be possible as:

  • You see who God says you are in the kitchen, not who you were.

  • You don’t need to do more. You need to have a bigger view of God and a better view of who He says You are in the kitchen, and as you do, you need to get to stepping into that.