I cannot believe that yesterday was week #4. Its going so fast. Watermark has been a church for almost a month. We are growing UP and DOWN. We are growing up. Even though we are still an infant, we are growing. We are taking our miracle steps (walking on the water) and we are growing with people. We are excited to meet new people every week and we are also excited to see returning people. The gowth is excting. We are also growing up towards the Son. Like a plant that always grows and stretches toward the light (sun); we are growing up. We are spreading and reaching up. We are finding strength and peace in His presence. A few weeks ago I preached on the name of God “Shammah”; which describes God’s presence on a place. We need this! We need His Shammah presence in our church (watermark) and on the Stillwater area. As we seek the Son, we will grow up!
We are growing down and deeper. Each plant that grows firsts start with being broken. The seed is broken and then it starts to grown dowm then up. As is says in scripture, as a seed falls to the ground and is broken. It needs to grow roots before it starts to grow up (needs to handle the weight). We are here. We are being broken for this City (people) and we growing roots. We are growing as a church into who God is in Us and what He wants to do through us. We are being deepened together as a team and a church. Its exciting to see what God is doing.
God doesnt need ME but He wants Me! This is the truth. I (we) need Him and He wants us to want Him. Needs to be our greatest pursuit. Like the old hymn used to say, “May all things become shadows in the light of HIM.” Nothing compares. We are so excited to be in this journey.
As we get ready for Easter Sunday, we are praying for miracles. No better way to celebrate the resurrection than to see lives restored. To see people from the area drawn to Him and to bring Him fame. We are sending out over 10,000 mailers this week to stillwater area peeps to invite them to our Easter service. We packed candy in eggs yesterday for our easter egg hunt and we even have a petting zoo coming to watermark next week. Pray for connections. Pray for open doors.
we loved the chance to get to pray for a few people at the altar after service yesterday. I keep walking away every week feeling, “that was my favorite week so far!” We are blessed and honor to be able to to what we are called to do. Thanks for reading and supporting us. Keep praying as We grow UP and Down.
Here is the Transciprt from my sermon that I preached yesterday at our Watermark service.
Transcript for Sunday March 24
We are on the third of a series called “names”. This series is all about getting to know Gods Character by His name. We started in week one by learning that “God is with us” (Immanuel). Last week we were challenged by the name “Shammah” that describes Gods presence (Be there). This week we are studying the name “El Shaddai” that describes the POWER of God.
Think about this; the sun is amazing.
- It makes up around 99.86% of the Solar System’s mass.
- At around 1,392,000 kilometers (865,000 miles) wide, the Sun’s diameter is about 110 times wider than Earth’s.
- Light from the Sun reaches Earth in around 8 minutes.
- The Sun’s surface temperature is around 5500 degrees Celsius (9941 degrees Fahrenheit)
- Approximately 109 planet Earths would fit on the surface of the sun and more than one million planet Earths would fit inside of the sun
- 100,000,000,000 tons of dynamite would have to be detonated every second to match the energy produced by the sun.
- A person weighing 150 pounds on Earth would weigh 4,200 pounds on the sun because the sun’s gravity is 28 times that of Earth.
- Largest star: Canis Majoris; thousands time larger than sun, over 4900 light years away from earth.
Genesis 1 describes that created all this into existence. He created light, water, animals, humans, and more into existence. He created something out of nothing. HE SPOKE it all into existence. HE SPOKE it. That’s power!
Gods big and He is powerful. All through scripture it describes the power of God. The miracles were a glimpse of the power of God (El Sheddai). From the Red Sea being parted to the walls of Jericho coming down. From the axe head floating to the battles won. From the raising of the dead to the loaves/fish. Each miracle is a testimony of the power of God. Your own testimony of how God has changed you is a testimony of the Power of God. It’s not just a power that yesterday but it’s a power that continues today and into tomorrow.
One of my favorite scriptures is “BE STILL and KNOW I AM GOD”. This verse tells me 2 things; He is GOD (I AM GOD), and I am NOT! He is in charge. He holds the power and He is holding me. HE IS STILL ON THE THRONE!
A good way to look at the Power of God (El Shaddai) is in two stories from the life David.
KILLING GOLIATH: DAVID AND GOLIATH
Most people know this story, about a young shepherd boy who went to the front lines of a war to meet his brothers and while he was there, He faced Goliath. The battle was down to two people. The two sides decided to send out a representation of each side and those two would battle. The winner of the fight would win the battle. The one side sent out this massive man named Goliath (best fighter in the land); the other side had no one that wanted to battle Goliath until David came unto the scene. Everyone else backed down from the challenge but David stepped up. This little teenage shepherd boy went toe to toe with Goliath and with 3 smooth stones and a slingshot he brought giant down. David won the way with his courage, his slingshot and with his God’s help. The El Shaddai power was present with David.
After this event, David was elevated in the kingdom. He served King Saul. As time went on serving king Saul, the people’s hearts started to love David. His fame grew and so did his favor. His king (Saul) began to grow bitter and jealous of David and the adoration that he was receiving. Saul’s heart grew harder towards David and the things of God.
Saul eventually threatened David and sent him packing. David and his mighty men fled for their life. After David left, Saul took his own army to chase down David.
1 Samuel 24:1-7 After Saul returned from pursuing the Philistines, he was told, “David is in the Desert of En Gedi.” So Saul took three thousand able young men from all Israel and set out to look for David and his men near the Crags of the Wild Goats. He came to the sheep pens along the way; a cave was there, and Saul went in to relieve himself. David and his men were far back in the cave. The men said, “This is the day the Lord spoke of when he said to you, ‘I will give your enemy into your hands for you to deal with as you wish.’ ” Then David crept up unnoticed and cut off a corner of Saul’s robe.
Afterward, David was conscience-stricken for having cut off a corner of his robe. He said to his men, “The Lord forbid that I should do such a thing to my master, the Lord ’s anointed, or lay my hand on him; for he is the anointed of the Lord.” With these words David sharply rebuked his men and did not allow them to attack Saul. And Saul left the cave and went his way. Then David went out of the cave and called out to Saul, “My lord the king!” When Saul looked behind him, David bowed down and prostrated himself with his face to the ground. He said to Saul, “Why do you listen when men say, ‘David is bent on harming you’? This day you have seen with your own eyes how the Lord delivered you into my hands in the cave. Some urged me to kill you, but I spared you; I said, ‘I will not lay my hand on my lord, because he is the Lord ’s anointed.’ See, my father, look at this piece of your robe in my hand! I cut off the corner of your robe but did not kill you. See that there is nothing in my hand to indicate that I am guilty of wrongdoing or rebellion. I have not wronged you, but you are hunting me down to take my life. May the Lord judge between you and me. And may the Lord avenge the wrongs you have done to me, but my hand will not touch you. As the old saying goes, ‘From evildoers come evil deeds,’ so my hand will not touch you. (1 Samuel 24:1-13 NIV)
At one point they got along. David served and worked for Saul the King. David would sing him songs and we would honor him. As years went on, the people’s popularity for David grew and so did the jealousy of Saul. Saul did not like David getting the Honor and the love of the people. His hatred grew deeper and deeper. He allowed anger, jealousy and resentment to eat at him. He burned with anger. He got to the point that he chased David out of the kingdom by threatening to kill him. Imagine that; David was asked to be on his kingdom; David did all he could do to serve the king but the Kings own jealousy drove a wedge. So now we have David running for his life (with His mighty men; David’s own small army) and being chased by Saul and his large army. The king is hunting down David. David while be chased decides to hide in a cave with his men. As he is hiding in this cave, Saul walks into the same cave by himself to relieve himself. Of All the caves and hundreds of miles, by chance they end up in the same cave (crazy). David is hiding with his men in the back in the dark watching Saul come in. Saul has no clue that they are in there. Saul went to this cave to relieve himself (yup that’s right! Use the potty).
David and his men were salivating at his opportunity. They were probably thinking that God brought Saul to us. “This is our chance to take him out, God delivered Saul to us.”. David then crawls to Saul as he is relieving himself. As he is inching closer, David pulls out his knife to take out the man who was hunting him. Just before he lunges the knife to kill Saul, he is convicted and instead he only cuts off a piece of Saul’s Cloak. David lets him go. Saul never knew any difference. He never found out that his life was spared. David then felt guilty for cutting a piece of his cloak….wow; that’s crazy conviction.
That is crazy discipline. He could have stopped the pursuit that day. He could have rescued himself but he chose to rescue Saul.
Lets look at both stories; killing Goliath and NOT killing Saul. Both are crazy stories. They have similarities and differences. Fighting Goliath took epic COURAGE. Not Killing Saul took epic INTEGRITY. Think about think; it may have been harder NOT to kill Saul then to kill Goliath. Sometimes its harder not to do something then it is to do something. Like losing weight. (Illustration). Not eating certain is harder than eating. Trying to kick a habit is hard.
Killing Goliath was an act of POWER. Not killing Saul was an act of WILLPOWER! Willpower might be the strongest and hardest form of power.
There are two types of power described in scripture.
- Dunamis”: The ability to do things beyond your natural ability (examples: physical healing, killing Goliath, Jericho walls crumbling, sea parting, etc)
- “Exousia”: The ability to not do things you have the ability to do.
Even though these seem similar, they are very much different.. Not all the power is the same.
I love hearing stories of God Dunamis Power; healing of the sick, raising the dead, walking on water, turning water into wine. These and more are all great examples of the Dunamis power of God. Even though these are great; it does not compare to the “exousia” power that Jesus taught us. Because of this power I am saved and delivered. Because of this power we are here today. Because this power, we celebrate this palm Sunday.
I love that Jesus worked His ‘Dunamis” power on earth (healing blind/lame man, raising Laz, feeding 5000, etc) I am more impressed with His “exousia” power. It’s what he did not do that changed my life! HE CHOSE TO STAY ON THE CROSS! He could have gotten down at any time. He is God. He is all-powerful, but I am not saved because of the power He performed but the one he held back. (Illustration) We all have stories that we held back. We could have something bad but chose not to.
That’s the miracle. He could have used His Dunamis power but He chose Exousia Power. That’s not just power. Not just love…That’s will power! “He didn’t have to take matters into His own hands. He needed to prove that He wouldn’t take matters into His own hands.” Sometimes there is a lot of power in doing nothing. Sometimes doing nothing is better than doing something. Jesus denied himself (his own dunamis power), He laid down His life and took up the cross. That is the true POWER OF THE CROSS. I didn’t hold Jesus on the cross, He held himself up there because of me.
David had to have willpower by not killing Saul. The same power that David used not to kill Saul is the same Power that held Jesus on that Cross. It’s the same power that goes through you when you show your integrity. David proved his integrity by NOT killing Saul. His men would have been happy (proved his power to them, but not God). He proved it to God by not doing anything. “You’ll never have your God given destiny without integrity”. Integrity has not shortcuts.
“If God can trust you to do the right thing when Saul is on the throne, then He can trust you to do the right thing when you’re sitting on the throne.—Mark Batterson
Integrity: doing the right thing when no one is looking.
Will-Power= The POWER to walk out God’s will! (Jarvis Definition)
Will power is not just saying no but also saying yes to Him. Its not just doing the wrong thing but its also doing the right thing.
- Saying ‘no’ when everyone else is saying ‘yes’
- Saying ‘yes’ when everyone else is saying ‘no’
- Not pushing your own wants and agenda
- Do what’s right/not giving into temptation (not eating the candy bar)
- Not forcing God to do something you want (spoiled)-not ready for yet (relationships)
- Giving things to God that you want
- Not trying to control God (trusting His decision)
- Denying yourself
- Going down the road less traveled
- Taking a stand
- Not just following the crowd
- Getting into the Bible/prayer
If I asked the group to split into 2 groups; want power and those who want humility. Most people would gravitate to the group that wants the power. The irony is that Jesus explains is that, if you want power, you need to embrace humility.
Humility (Definition): modest, submissive, knows rank,
-Knowing who you are before God.
Humility opposite of Pride (lifting yourself up, making all about you)
Humility and integrity leads to POWER.
Proverbs 11:2 When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.
Proverbs 22:4 Humility and the fear of the LORD bring wealth and honor and life.
James 4:6 But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”
Matthew 23:12 Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.
Humility says “I don’t know everything, my way is not the best (right), all I have is yours, I have hardness in my heart, I’m a sinner, I need grace, I’m wrong, I need to be changed, it’s not everyone else that needs to change but me”. If we want to see the power, we have to start down the road of humility (no shortcuts). Once we recognize our need (humility) we will then see our reason for the power. We can’t do it on our own. True power is found in true submission.
I read the bible and pray because I need it. (I lose vision, passions, hunger, God’s will)
Some people don’t read because read/pray because they have come to the realization of much they need it. (Only the sick need a doctor-but you first have to know you are sick)
HOW? 2 Chronicles 7:14-16
14 If my people (Christians), who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven (is He Hearing us without these?), and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. 15 Now my eyes will be open and my ears attentive to the prayers offered in this place.