If we can encourage others, we should encourage them. Romans 12:8

Saturday, July 19, 2014

"Stop focusing on the problems and start focusing on the promise."
Joel Osteen

Lakewood Church Saturday Night 7/19/14
Pastor Joel Osteen
Joke: A little girl asked her mother how the human race got started. The mother told her how God created Adam and Eve. The little girl asked her Dad who said we evolved from monkeys. The little girl asked why Dad had a different story. Mom said “I told you about my side of the family and your father told you about his side of the family”.
Bible Confession
Key Verse: Romans 4:19
He did not weaken in faith when he considered the [utter] impotence of his own body, which was as good as dead because he was about a hundred years old, or [when he considered] the barrenness of Sarah’s [deadened] womb.

Title: Focusing On the Promise Not the Problem

What we focus on we magnify.
Focusing on the problems will make it bigger than it really is.
It’s changing your perception.
A small coin held close enough to your eye will seem large enough to block out the sun.
If you focus on something you don’t like about yourself, it will block the amazing future God has in store for you.
There’s a lot right with you.
Don’t magnify what’s wrong.
Focus on what God said.
You are fearfully and wonderfully made.
A masterpiece.
If you got a negative report you could research it on the internet and add to your worry.
Giving it all your time and attention makes it worse.
Stop focusing on the problems and start focusing on the promise.
With long life You will satisfy me.
It takes the same amount of energy to believe as it does to worry.
You can worry or you can thank God for supplying all your needs.
Lord You said You’d pour out blessings I can’t contain.
Maybe you’re concerned about your children.
Father I thank You that for me and my house we will serve the Lord.
If you’ll change your focus worry will leave and faith will rise up.
God is bigger than anything you’re facing.
If you’re single and want to get married say God You said because I delight myself in You, You will give me the desires of my heart.
Whatever you’re believing for – instead of worrying find a promise you can stand on.
God You said You have victory in store for the upright.
God is not obligated to bring to pass what we say; but He is obligated to bring to pass what He said.
You said You always cause me to triumph.
When God hears His promises coming out of your mouth He gets busy.
Joel knew woman with troubled teen.
Seemed like she just wanted to complain.
Joel gave her Proverbs 31.
Her children will rise up and call their mother blessed.
She started thanking God that her children would call her blessed.
She found more promises like children are a gift from God.
2 years later daughter had complete change of heart
Now the mother isn’t saying it by faith; it’s become a reality.
When God gave Abraham promise of a baby they were too old, but Abraham considered not the weakness of his body…
Abraham didn’t say I’m too old, it can’t happen.
He didn’t get on the internet and Google chances of having a baby at 100.
If he’d focused on his circumstances the promise wouldn’t have had a chance.
He considered not his circumstances but he was fully persuaded.
I have a promise from almighty God.
Father You said we’d have this baby.
God I don’t see how but I know You can do the impossible.
That promise became bigger.
He got to the point where he was fully persuaded.
If you’re going to see promises fulfilled you will have to consider not your negative circumstances.
You may have to consider not the medical report.
Doctors do the best they can but they run out of options.
God made your body; He never runs out of options.
If you stay focused on your debt you’ll be worried and frustrated.
Consider your God.
He flung stars into space.
He’s got you in the palm of His hand.
One explosive blessing can put you into overflow.
They were told the Compaq center would cost $100 million to renovate.
They came up short in the calculations.
One day he said God I’ve considered the numbers and facts and it doesn’t look good, but I’m changing my focus to consider You.
You stopped the sun for Joshua, You parted the sea for Moses…
You healed my mother of cancer; you gave us a property that doubled in value overnight…
You said we’d see the surpassing greatness of Your favor.
When I changed my focus doubt didn’t have a chance.
Expectancy rose up.
I knew that God would make a way.
And that’s exactly what happened.
Living the dream.
The psalmist said Let God arise and His enemies be scattered.
Know that God is fighting your battles and making the crooked places straight.
Your enemies will be scattered: debt, depression…
Nothing can stand against our God.
I’m in a slow season at work.
Somebody did me wrong.
Turn it around.
Focus on the promise.
Consider your God.
Father You said You’ve armed me with strength for every battle.
You said the traps the enemy set for me he will fall into himself.
I thank You that things are changing in my favor.
King Jehoshaphat was facing major enemies. [2 Chronicles 20]
Outnumbered ten to one.
He had a right to be discouraged but he gathered everyone together and prayed.
He talked about the greatness of God.
“Lord, the God of our ancestors, are you not the God who is in heaven? You rule over all the kingdoms of the nations. Power and might are in your hand, and no one can withstand you. [From 2 Chronicles 20:6]
Nothing can withstand You.
God You drove the inhabitants out of this land.
Magnifying God not his problems.
Instead of complaining about how slow business is –
If you talk defeat you’ll have defeat.
God You’re greater than this financial difficulty.
You’re more powerful than the opposition in this legal trouble.
Too often we magnify the problem rather than God.
Moses sent 12 men to spy out the land. [Numbers 13]
10 said they’re giants; we can’t defeat them.
Joshua and Caleb said yes they’re big but our God is bigger.
One group focused on their problems; the other focused on the size of their God.
Could it be our own wrong perspective is keeping us out of our Promised Land?
David said magnify the Lord with me. [Psalm 34:3]
When David faced Goliath he never called him a giant. [1 Samuel 17]
He called him an uncircumcised Philistine.
Didn’t even give him credit for being big.
David’s brothers and the other Israelites were intimidated and afraid.
They told David he didn’t have a chance.
David knew he was strong in the Lord and not going out there alone.
Goliath is too big to hit.
David said ‘No he’s too big to miss.’
David said to the Philistine, “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. 1 Samuel 17:45
He defeated a huge giant.
Paul said in Philippians 1 do not be intimidated by your enemies. [Philippians 1:28]
Have the right perspective; the Most High God is on your side.
Little boy was bothered by big bully down the street.
Father bought him a new telescope.
He was looking through the wrong end.
He said when I look at the bully this way it makes him so small I’m no longer afraid of him.
If you’ll turn it around you’ll see it from the right perspective.
It just takes one touch of God’s favor.
That issue may seem insurmountable to you, turn the telescope around and see it’s a small matter for God.
If you’ll learn to focus on the promise you’ll overcome obstacles that look insurmountable.
Zerubbabel had a promise to rebuild the temple but everything came against him. [Zechariah 4]
He couldn’t hire workers, or get materials, or permits.
It looked impossible.
His opposition seemed too powerful.
Zechariah 4:7  For who are you, O great mountain [of human obstacles]? Before Zerubbabel [who with Joshua had led the return of the exiles from Babylon and was undertaking the rebuilding of the temple, before him] you shall become a plain [a mere [a]molehill]! And he shall bring forth the finishing gable stone [of the new temple] with loud shoutings of the people, crying, Grace, grace to it!
I will finish this project.
If you don’t talk to your mountains, your mountains will talk to you.
This day I will conquer you.
You can’t talk defeat and expect to have victory.
See it from God’s POV.
It’s nothing for you; you are a child of the Most High God.
Do what Abraham did - consider not your negative circumstance and consider Your God.
All through the day remind God of His promises.
Learn to stay focused on the promises and not the problems and you will defeat your giants.
What God promised He will bring to pass.
In Jesus’ name.


[Altar Call]

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