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map reading

One of the key truths that God has graciously given to me is that I know that God made me on purpose and with a purpose.  I remember getting saved and having a very real and very clear call at that moment to ministry.  All I wanted to do is preach the gospel to anyone and everyone.

But there was that next big question, the question we often ask about life.

How do we get there?

Earlier this year I went for a bit of a road trip to visit my friend Fee who lives in Gulf Harbour.  I had never been to Gulf Harbour before.  In fact, I had probably only driven over the harbour bridge about 5 times in the whole 15 years I’ve lived in Auckland!
Anyway, I had her address written down.  I knew from the map on the net what streets to take in her little township area.
But as I drove over the bridge and started looking at the motorway exit signs I noticed one thing that made me half freak out.  They didn’t have suburb titles, like how the rest of Auckland does.  Like Manukau.  East Tamaki.  Greenlane.  It had road names.  I was heading into unfamiliar territory and the road signs made no sense!
Then I saw another sign that made me freak out even more.  Probably a 3/4 freak out on the scale of freaking out.  Toll bridge ahead.  We had been driving for over an hour and there were less and less houses and more and more grass and more and more cows.  I was like oh my word!  Perhaps we totally missed where we were going?  Perhaps I was totally lost!

 

So i pulled over and rung my friend.  Hey Fee, Claire here.  Help I’m LOST and um, yeah that toll bridge thing.

Ended up that I wasn’t lost, I just wasn’t there yet.  And we didn’t have to go the toll bridge, we had to take some off ramp with a weird name that didn’t relate at all to the area she lived in.
Now I bet you’re wondering what on earth does that have to do with my life and my dreams?  Its a nice story, but hello….
You see, just like how I was on a journey we are all on a journey.
I had a destination, but I was driving unfamiliar roads and didn’t really know how to get there.
I was pointing in the right direction, but some of the signs were confusing and made me unsure if I was on the right track.
And in the end I phoned my friend for help.
And yes, we made it there in the end!
We are all on a journey.  Life is a journey.  Every day counts.    But the good news is that God knows the destination, and He knows how to get there.
Jeremiah 29:11-13 says: For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.
You can be confident at every age and at every stage that God loves you and that He made you on purpose with a purpose.  God isn’t random.  He didn’t make you and then throw you into humanity to see what would happen.  He made you on purpose, with a purpose.
But sometimes it feels like we’re driving unfamiliar roads.  What will I study at high school?  What about university?  Or apprenticeship?  Who will I marry?  Should i do an OE?  Buy a house?  The red pill or the blue pill?     Big questions.
Philippians 1:6 says that God will finish what He starts.  He started something in your life.  And He will see it through to the destination.  God is the dream giver and the dream fulfiller.  He gives us dreams….  those desires and thoughts you have are seeds of God’s plan.  And He doesn’t just leave us to do it ourselves, He on purpose is at work to make the dreams come true.
Sometimes there are confusing signs though.  Some of the confusing signs could be what other people say.  You’re not good enough.  Why would you do that?  Sometimes its what we say to ourselves.  Man we can be mean to ourselves eh?  Sometimes we’re saying we’re not good enough.  Sometimes there is life stuff that happens that shakes us a little bit.  Sometimes its also a timing thing, that God knows the perfect time for things to happen and so He keeps on working on us from the inside out so that we’re ready for the challenge and the task.
Though we may not know exactly what the map is like, we can be confident that God will show us what to do at the right time.
So how do we do that in real life?
1. Reading the Bible.  Psalm 110:105 says Your Word is a lamp unto my feet.  Its a light to show us where to put our feet.   The wisdom and cool stuff in here will show you what steps to take.
2.    Hang out with God.  Remember Jeremiah 29:12-13 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. God hears us when we pray.  Keep drawing close to Him and hanging out with God.  He is so wise, so amazing and knows all and sees all.  He sees your journey from the beginning to end.  Blows your mind eh!  By hanging out with God He gives us the confidence to step out of our comfort zone when we need to, and the peace and strength to keep going.  Sometimes He shows us a better way to do things.  Sometimes He shows us that we’ve been heading in the wrong direction totally and He helps us U Turn and get back on the right road.
3.  Talk to someone.  I phoned my friend.  Talk to a big person in your life, someone who perhaps is further down the road of life than you.  Ask them what they know to be true about God.  Ask them how they got through the rough parts.  Ask them how they figured out what to do next.
I am further down the journey that you.  I have had some epic plot twists.  I have had some interesting detours.  I have had some seasons where it has felt like I was going the long long long way round and that I was asking God every 3 minutes “are we there yet?”  “are we there yet?”  “are we there yet?”
We see the map just as we are.  Just our little square of location.  But God can zoom out and see the whole map.  He sees every part of your journey.  You can trust Him.  He never gets lost.  He never takes a wrong turn.  He doesn’t need to ask for directions.
Tonight put your journey in the hands of God, whom you can trust, and who loves you…
You might however be at that point of wondering if God is real.  If He loves you.  If He knows your journey.  Yip, He does.  He loves you.  He knows your name.  Jesus came for real and lived for real and died for real and rose from death for real to prove that love.  Life without God is like not even getting in the car, to spin the analogy.  Yip, it may feel scary to think about God.  Yip, it may be scary to get real about it.  But its so worth it.

*** we’ve just had the most amazing church conference – amazing message, worship and encounters with the Holy Spirit, not to mention our own barista, a free lunch, great connecting time with people and a big reveal!

 HPC PS 1

*** Session Three – Paul Saunders

Is 54
Stretched
Keep your antenna up
New visions and dreams
Phil 2:17
Like a stretched canvas that God wants to paint on
Be alert
Be leaning forward

God’s creative power isn’t like human creativity which expresses things and thoughts but He CREATES

And wants to partner with us

Jer 29:11
Partner with God in living out the plans
Create a future

Jacob – rested his head on The Rock
You can be at the lowest part of your life and have a dream
Family crisis, running for his life
God spoke to him

Luke 24:15 road to Emmaus

You need more than just horizontal communication
Jesus stepped into the conversation
You need vertical communication

God is not out of touch
God understands what is going on in our lives
He has perspective

"Are you the only stranger in jersualem and have no idea what is going on?"

They began to talk to jesus about Friday

But its sunday
But they’re talking to jesus about friday, the day when everything went wrong

It could be friday on your world right now but sunday is coming

God talks to you from the perspective of Sunday – from the perspective of resurrection

Friday is your glory day
It was when jesus was champion
This is your finest hour
God sings songs of victory over you
Zeph 3:17

When you look forward into the future what do you see?

Your hearts cry is a place of great potential
Great hope or great pain
Hope deferred
Perspective
Abraham – paint a new picture, look up at the stars, a new perspective

Man does not live by bread alone but by every word that comes from God
Have vertical conversations

Sometimes you’re having a conversation by yourself and your future is robbed by a wrong conclusion
Robbed by what you believe and think
You can come to a conclusion and think you have 20/20 vision but really you’re blind

You need jesus to step in
You need another picture

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So Paul warned them,"Men, I can see that our voyage is going to be disastrous and bring great loss to ship and cargo, and to our own lives also." But the centurion, instead of listening to what Paul said, followed the advice of the pilot and of the owner of the ship.  Acts 27: 9-11

How many times do we discount the voice of God and listen to the voice of “an expert”?

How many times do we allow ourselves to be influenced by others instead of the One who holds the universe in His hands?

Lets be people who listen to God’s voice and guidance?

Even though it may run contrary to the expert opinion or the buzz of the crowd HE IS THE ONE WHO KNOWS

“It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.” Psalm 118:8

“A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.” Proverbs 16:9

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

Commit your way unto the LORD; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.  Psalm 37:5

Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and your plans will succeed. Proverbs 16:3

“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you.” Psalm 32:8

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart; and lean not upon your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct your path.”  Proverbs 3:5-6

29273466297385098_DFdSxIpo_c

So Paul warned them,"Men, I can see that our voyage is going to be disastrous and bring great loss to ship and cargo, and to our own lives also." But the centurion, instead of listening to what Paul said, followed the advice of the pilot and of the owner of the ship.  Acts 27: 9-11

 

How many times do we discount the voice of God and listen to the voice of “an expert”?

How many times do we allow ourselves to be influenced by others instead of the One who holds the universe in His hands?

 

Lets be people who listen to God’s voice and guidance?

Even though it may run contrary to the expert opinion or the buzz of the crowd HE IS THE ONE WHO KNOWS

 

“It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.” Psalm 118:8

 

“A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.” Proverbs 16:9

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

Commit your way unto the LORD; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.  Psalm 37:5

Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and your plans will succeed. Proverbs 16:3

“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you.” Psalm 32:8

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart; and lean not upon your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct your path.”  Proverbs 3:5-6

"In the pursuit of following Him, He brought my destiny to me. I didn’t have to chase my destiny. It came. My eyes fixed on Him, walking to Him and He aligns my steps" Kim Walker Smith –

 

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When we love God and fix our eyes on Him, He orders our steps into the plans and purposes that He has for us. His promise is to complete the good work He has started!   i can be CONFIDENT in His goodness and ablenes and faithfulness!

It’s 2009! 2009 – wow! In fact we are already a quarter of the way through the year!  Time flies doesnt it!  i remember being 10 and thinking that 2009 was like a far away future.  and here it is… in fact i had to laugh at an ad for Back 2 the Future 2 that was on tv the other day – back 2 the future, with michael j fox, is set in 2015.  only 6 years away.  with their flying cars and zooming skateboards….  anyway…

We’ve heard lots of prophetic words about 2009, about revival and about God moving in remarkable and extraordinary ways. God has called us for “such a time as this.” For 2009. For today, right here, right now.

I love the call of God. It is one of those “things” that flick my bic. I used to speak about it so often in my youth group that they created a whole new word for it; the “Callogoh”!

Even today, it still amazes me that God has a plan for me and tailor made my life for His purposes and glory. I am not an accident. I am not even merely a good idea by my parents, but I am designed to be a part of God’s dreams for this generation.

The Bible  says that God has a plan for our lives. “For I know the purposes which I am purposing for you, says God; purposes of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11 MKJV)

So then, knowing this wonderful news, does it mean that we should just sit back, flick on the TV, drink our latte and rest, comfortable in the churning of the cogs of God’s plan?

The prophet Jeremiah would disagree: “Then you shall call on Me, and you shall go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you shall seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.”

Knowing God has a call and plan for our lives is great. But giving momentum and action to that plan is even better. We need to be people who pray and act in 2009.

It isn’t enough to know the promises; we need to realize we are a part of the puzzle of how those promises become reality. Creation groans – the land cries out – it’s time for the children of God to rise up and play their part. You are called to make a difference in this generation. You can be walking in the call of God upon your life right now, regardless of how big or small it may seem. Called to preach? Great! Start by sharing with one person. Let them know about the Good News and the truth contained in God’s Word that will bring the breakthrough they need. Called to missions? Fantastic! Make your neighbourhood or workplace your first mission field, your “Jerusalem”. Called to heal the sick? Brilliant! Pray for those around you who are ill.

Be yourself and let the Holy Spirit speak through you, shine for God. God made you to be His advertisement on this earth of how awesome He is. He didn’t call you for something in “tomorrow-land”. He calls you and can use you today, wherever you are. Will we rise up to the challenge?

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