Give Hope

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Our response to God’s grace is generosity. Grace leads us to missional generosity. Missional generosity is using what you have for the good of others and the glory of God. Grace draws us, changes us, and empowers us to live a life bigger than ourselves. When we discover the grace given to us, our natural response should be to give.

Faith is refusing to settle for what’s in front of you believing that there is more beyond the horizon. It’s being willing to follow god into the unknown, laying down your life for the good of others and the glory of God and in process, we find a free for ourselves. Faith is the ability to see what can be in the midst of what is. Can you see it? So one day Jesus went up on a mountain side and he began to teach and as he started teaching, a crowd began to develop and the more he taught the bigger the crowd became and people came from the all over the countryside to come and see this Jesus.

And the more he taught, the crowd grew larger and larger until there was more than five thousand lost, lonely and broken people gathered around Jesus. And as he taught, he taught them things they’ve never heard before. He shared with them the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven. He revealed to them the Father’s love. Grace was teaching them about grace. It was a great day. And as the day wore on, the people leaned in and they listened and they were taking in everything Jesus had to say, but as the day went on the people began to become hungry. It was the countryside. There was no food there and the people had been there a long day and Jesus, he keeps going and the disciples, they were over here and they are watching whole thing take place and they start to see that the crowd was getting hungry. Their eyes were starting to roll back in their head. They’re starting to become famished. Some of them were starting to drift off to sleep.

And the disciple started talking amongst each other they were like, man, Jesus has got to land this plane. The people are getting hungry. I don’t know what are we going to do? Someone needs to go and tell him. It’s time to wrap this thing up and I’m not sure how they picked who is going to go. Maybe, it was rock, paper, scissors — choose. You know, okay, that’s two out of three, can we try that again, because I don’t want to be the one. Well, someone lost and walks over to Jesus and finds a little moment in the break in the teaching. Hey, Jesus, wow, what a great day it’s been like, like me and the boys, we’ve got pages of notes. In fact, our journals are full. We can’t even take another note and you’ve taught some incredible things and we are just not sure if you have noticed this or not, but the people are getting really hungry and so Peter — you see Peter over there? It was his idea that we should send people away so they could go get something to eat and Jesus very quickly looks back at them and he says, you give them something to eat.

In other words, if you notice the need, you go give the people some hope. And the disciples panicked. They are like, give us something to eat. Jesus, there is like five thousand people here. That would take eight months’ of a man’s wages. We don’t have that and Jesus says, okay, what do you have? So they go and they look around for a few minutes and one little boy who had been listening to grace all day long had five loaves and two fish and offered it to the disciples who bring it to Jesus and they said, Jesus this isn’t even enough to feed us but this is all we got. He says, perfect. Takes it, blesses it, breaks it, gives it back to them and says, now go pass it out and as they begin passing it out to the hungry crowd, giving hope of peace at a time, it multiplies in their hands and five thousand people are fed and 12 basket full are left over. And I tell you that story because I think it’s so interesting that when we notice needs in the people around us and we want god to do something about it, god wants us to do something about it.

He says, you give them something to eat and we panic because we say we don’t have enough and what I love about Jesus is he is never asking us what we don’t have, he is asking us what do we have and what are we willing to do with that which we do have? And what I think is so interesting out of a crowd of five thousand people, you’re telling me there is only one kid with some food. You’re telling me in that crowd there isn’t over-prepared dad who showed up with a YETI cooler just in case. I mean you’re telling me there isn’t that mom there with her little bag with thieves oil, some baby wipes and Granola bars like she is ready, man. And yet there is only one boy that’s willing to give what he has got to Jesus. And so the text doesn’t tell us what they do with the 12 basket full but based on the character and nature of the god, I believe when the whole thing was done, Jesus himself picked up the 12 basket full, walked over to little boy, set it down in front of him and said, thank you.

You’re faithful with little. I now know I can entrust you with much. Or how about the story of Abraham? Do you remember Abraham? He is just a regular guy following god. All Abraham knows is that out of all the peoples of the world, somehow the grace of god found him. And he knows that he has been blessed to be a blessing. That’s what god told him. He doesn’t even know what that means. He just knows I’m blessed to be a blessing. And one day word comes to Abraham, that lot, his nephew and a bunch of people were captured by their enemies and they were taken prisoner. And what I love about Abraham is he doesn’t sit around and complain about it. He doesn’t expect the government to do something about it. He doesn’t wait for someone else to take care of it. Abraham takes everything he has got. All of his men and all of his resources and he sets out on mission to go set the captives free. He wants to go bring the lost back home. He goes on mission.

And he goes and he fights this war. And in the war, he sets all of the people free, which is a reminder that no one is beyond reach of the mission of god when we are willing to use what we have got. And in the process of setting all the people free, Abraham captures a whole bunch of treasure, why? Because when you use what you have to bless others, god can bless you with you even more because now he understands that you understand why god has blessed you in the first place. You’ve been faithful with little, I can entrust you with much. How about the story of Zacchaeus? You remember Zacchaeus? Zacchaeus is a sinful tax collector. He is the lowest of the low, spends his life ripping people off. Nobody likes Zacchaeus. And one day Jesus comes to Zacchaeus to his town and as he is walking through the crowded city streets, out of all the people there, it says when Jesus reached the spot — it’s how it literally says it — when he reached the spot, the spot of prophetic destiny, he stopped and out of all the people, looked in Zacchaeus’ eyes and says Zacchaeus — Zacchaeus had climbed up in a tree by the way.

Zacchaeus, come down because I want to go to your house today. Now, why Zacchaeus out of all the people? Because grace is attracted to brokenness and brokenness is attracted to grace. Zacchaeus climbed down inviting grace into his life, took Jesus into his home, had a meal with him and as they are having this great day sharing a meal and bunch of religious Pharisee are complaining that Jesus is hanging out with Zacchaeus and Zacchaeus all on his own stands up and says, look lord, here and now, I give half of everything I have to the poor and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay them back four times the amount. Fascinating. Jesus never asked Zacchaeus to give. He never asked Zacchaeus to give. Why? Because when you’re in the presence of grace, no one has to ask you to give. You can’t help but use what you have for the good of others and the glory of god and I love the very next thing Jesus says is today salvation has come to this house.

In other words, Jesus is saying generosity is evidence of salvation. Today, salvation has come to this house. Generosity is evidence of salvation. Why? Because grace leads you to generosity. Okay, one more for you, do you remember the story of the sinful woman? One day Jesus was invited to this man named Simon, the Pharisee’s house and this guy was well-off. He lived on the good side of the town. He had a big house. He had the latest model camel. I mean he had everything you could want. And he invites Jesus over to a dinner party and Jesus comes and they are hanging out and in walks this woman who had lived a broken life, a sinful past but somewhere along the way she must have been touched by the grace of Jesus. She comes in with a jar of perfume, the only thing she has of value and she gets on her knees and she pours it on Jesus and she weeps and worships him and wipes his feet with her hair. And while this is all happening, Simon is disgusted. He is like if this guy was legit, he wouldn’t let a woman like this touch him let alone walk in the house.

Jesus knows what Simon is thinking. So he looks at Simon and he says bro, he says, I came to your house. Like I mean your house right now and I came in and you didn’t give me water for my feet, a kiss on the cheek or oil for my head. You gave me nothing. And you see this woman. From the time she has walked in, she has not stopped offering her entire life to me. And so I tell you Simon, she who has been forgiven much, loves much but he was being forgiven little, loves little. In other words, your generosity is always directly tied to your revelation of how much you’ve been forgiven. If you believe you’ve been forgiven much, you can’t help but be generous but if you believe that you only needed a little bit of forgiveness in your life and maybe god has given you just because you’re good person, then it’s really hard to be generous.

It was grace that led her to generosity and it was her generosity, offering her life to Jesus that changed the atmosphere of that entire house. She brought the fragrance of heaven into that space. You see I tell you those stories because they are all over the Bible. If fact, it is impossible to read the Bible without coming to the conclusion that grace leads you to missional generosity. It’s literally impossible to read the Bible and come to the conclusion and 0:10:32.9 even other than grace leads you to missional generosity. Missional generosity is the normal response to god’s grace. You say what’s missional generosity? It’s using what you have for the good of others and glory of god. When you’ve been touched by the grace of Jesus, you want everybody to be touched by the grace of Jesus. You want to sacrifice what you have so other people can be saved. See what grace does is grace draws you, changes you and empowers you.

Grace literally empowers you to live a life bigger than yourself of helping others people find the grace of god and so I tell you all that to ask you this question, how has grace changed your life? Like in your life, how has grace changed things? Like if I got up here today and told your story as one of the stories, would it sound anything like those stories? How has the grace of god shifted you? See because whether you realize it or not, the grace of god is all over your life. Think of how good he has been to you. How faithful, how kind, how merciful, how he has provided for you and protected you and forgiven you and made you and created you and breathe life into you. The grace of god is all over your life and it’s time to respond to that grace. You see, for the last few weeks, I’ve been telling you our new vision. That our vision is to be a movement of hope for the city and beyond. Together, we want to be a movement. It’s individuals come together and submit what we have got to a common vision for exponential return, a bigger impact that we could have on our own.

And we want to take the hope of Jesus beyond just this place into the city and beyond. And we said that there is two ways we want to do this. Harbors and hope carriers, campuses and people. We want to gather around the hope of Jesus and then carry that hope where we go every single day. We said that a campus like this, it’s just a harbor. It’s a place where we come in and unload our garbage and get touched by the presence of god, get filled up with the hope of god and then be sent back out to carry the hope of Jesus wherever we go, that this is our vision. And we said the way we are going to get this started is missional move, hope for the city where we take a next step. So someone else can take theirs and what we have said is we want to take everything we have got, put it back in the middle of the game and use it for the good of others and the glory of god and we said what we want to do is go from four campuses to eight campuses in the next four years. We want to launch at University Campus, Gainesville Campus, Northlake Argyle, Roanoke, somewhere out here and somewhere along the way, god will show what the fourth campus is.

And we have said what if we just draw a big circle around north Texas and say let’s just own it. Let’s make sure every person that lives in this space has repeated opportunities to see and experience the hope of Jesus. Like what if we make it hard for people to go to hell in this area? What if we make it hard for people to be hopeless in this area? What if we put a harbor of hope within a 20-minute drive of everyone who lives in this space because every student deserves to have a hub in their neighborhood or school district. Every child deserves to hear god is good. Jesus has forgiven them. They are loved and everything is possible. Every marriage deserves to have a harbor of hope that they can go to and life is falling apart. And we said what if we just do it? We said it’s big. It’s 20 million dollars to do all of that. And so what I have done for the last few weeks is that I have cashed you a big vision like I get it, I get it.

For some of you, you’re like our brain has exploded over last few weeks. I know, man. I’m like we preached long, we’ve said a lot, it has been a lot to share. It’s been big. And what I’ve been trying to do is tell you the direction that we are going. This is where we are headed and like anybody big expedition, any big movement, any big adventure, you have to know where you’re going but it all starts with the next step. A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single next step. That’s why in Psalm 119:105, god says, your word is like a lamp into my feet and light into my path. In other words, he will show us our very next step in the direction that we are going and that’s about it. And if you think about it, like Columbus didn’t leave from Europe to America, he had to get in a boat. Lewis and Clark didn’t leave from the east to the west, they had to start logging. Neil Armstrong didn’t leave from the earth to the moon, they had to build a rocket.

We can’t leap from where we are — from where we are to this. We have to take our next step and our next step is to make a commitment to gift. Our next step is simply to say, hey, we want to invite everybody in our church to make a two-year commitment above and beyond what they already give to help us do that. See, here is the deal. We can’t just sit here and cheer like yeah, let’s make it hard for people to go to hell. Yeah, every person is helping their school district, yeah and then we keep our hands in our pockets because this won’t just happen. God told us the direction that we are going and now he is inviting us to take a next step and we have to have the courage and the faith to do that. See, to give hope, replies or implies that you actually have something to give. So we are asking everybody to make a two-year commitment above and beyond what they already give and I boldly ask you to do that. And here is the deal. I told you this is not a campaign. This is not a fundraiser. There is no thermometer in the atrium. This is we have been listening to the grace of god for years in this church.

It should now be leading us to missional generosity. And I boldly ask you to do it because I know what it will do in your life and in our church and in our city. Like I know the freedom it will bring. Like just think of these verses, Matthew 6:21, where your treasure is, there your heart will be also, Jesus says. In other words, he says your heart follows your money. We say no, no my money follows my heart. No. Jesus says where your treasure is, where your money goes, your heart follows and attaches. So if you give to this, your heart becomes attached to Jesus and attached to us. So all of a sudden you’re no longer a nomad roaming from church to church and place to place enjoying and consuming what other people do, you now step into your destiny, you’re being a pioneer, contributing and engaging and moving forward building a history with god and his people. Or how about Luke 6 that says give and it will be given to you.

In other words you can’t out-give god. What does god want to give you over these next two years is we go on the journey. The problem is that our lives are often so full that there is no space for god to give us the next things he wants to entrust us with. So he asks us to open up. How about Proverb 11 that says that the world of the generous gets larger and larger. He who refreshes others with himself be refreshed. He says generosity is the way you expand your life. You want a bigger life, you want refreshment, then give. See by participating what you’re doing is you’re attaching your heart to Jesus, your heart to this church, you’re breaking off agreement with the kingdom of darkness. You’re separating yourself from the things of the world. You’re expanding your life. You’re creating new opportunities and you’re allowing god to fill your life with hope, man. See, you got to remember that the Bible tells us, what we sow, we reap. The money is like a seed. What you set in motion, stays in motion and if you sew a stingy amount of seed, you will reap a stingy harvest but if you’re generous in what you sow, you will reap a generous harvest.

So Corinthians 9 says remember this, whoever sows sparingly, reaps sparingly. Whoever sows generously, reaps generously. What you set in motion, stays in motion. And so if we sow hope in the lives of other people, we are setting up a harvest of hope to reach for ourselves. Like the greatest way to find hope is to give it away to someone else. It’s the greatest way. Like could it be that we are often looking for hope and can’t find it because we have never set it in motion? Could it be that we want to harvest something that we’ve never planted? So if you’re here and you feel hopeless in your own life, I know exactly what that feels like and that’s real. The greatest thing I can tell you is give hope away, because by faith you’re setting it in motion and you will reap a harvest of hope for yourself. So to give the missional move hope for the city, it’s saying I have faith in hope.

I don’t get it, I don’t understand it but I believe that if I give hope to other people, I’m going to reap it for myself and this is why our prayer is that every person, every individual and every family will take a next step and participate because it’s good for you. This isn’t about campuses. This isn’t about money. This is about you moving forward with Jesus because if every individual on every family member, that means I’m talking to you, so you catch that, right? That’s the word “every”, that’s why it’s underlined. It’s the not the person next to you or person at another campus. This is you. Why? Because if you participate, here is what you’re saying. You’re saying I’m here. I’m invested. I’m following Jesus. I’m on mission. I want to be a part of the people I have got. I want a history with god. I want some hope in my life, so I’m going to give it away to some other people. So whether you’re online or at campus, whether you’re new or whether you’ve been here forever, we want every person to participate because of what it will do in your life.

In fact, for those of you that are new, this is your chance to say, okay, I’m finally in. I’ve been kicking the tires of this church for a while. Oh no. Alright, it’s time to stop kicking the tires and say this is my home. This is my harbor and I want to invest into it. And so all I’m asking you to do is ask, listen and respond. That’s it. Every person. Ask god what he wants you to do, listen to his voice, respond by faith. That’s pretty cool, huh? That’s it. I’m not giving you like all kinds of stuff to try to stuff you. Ask. I would like nine things that I knew I shouldn’t say. They were all right there on the tip of my tongue. Ask god what he wants you to do, listen to his voice because you’re his sheep and he is your shepherd and he says you hear his voice and have the courage and faith to respond. I’m already hearing amazing stories.

I’m hearing stories of little kids that are making crafts and selling them on the side of the road to fill up their missional move piggy banks. I’m hearing stories of students that are saying they are not going to buy that new iPhone or buy those new clothes because they want to take what they have got and give it so other students can hope in their school district. I’m hearing stories of a single mom who is taking on a second job so that her and her kids can have the money to invest in the lives of other people because she wants set in motion hope in someone’s life. Are you kidding me? When a single mother takes a second job so other people can have hope, that’s a challenge for every one of us siting in this room. Stories of people giving their bonuses and stock and stories of people sacrificing things and couples praying together for the first time in their lives saying what is it that god’s actually saying to our family. Let’s some to unity and that don’t underestimate what god wants to do in you in this process.

It’s not about the campuses, it’s about you. I’m telling you man the stories of the last missional moves that we’ve had like stories of a couple that in the past missional moves like they couldn’t get pregnant. They wanted a baby in the worst way and so they saved up for years. They saved up money for in-vitro and they had their whole plan on how it’s going to work. We get to the missional move and they felt like god was asking them to give their in-vitro money to the missional move. So with tears in their eyes, they gave it to the lord and guess that in that misisonal move they got pregnant and had a baby. A story of a guy who lost his job had just enough money saved up to the end of the year and he felt like god was saying, I want you to give it to the missional move and the guy was terrified. How am I going to pay my bills? What am I going to do? But he knew it’s what god was asking him to do. So he had the faith to respond and he gave it to the lord and in that missional move, he got the dream job that he always wanted. A story of a guy that had this nest egg saved up and it was kind of like his safety blanket.

And he felt like in the process, god was saying to him, hey, you trust in that money more than you trust in me, so it’s your god, I’m not. And I would like to be your god. So I want you that give that to me and trust me by faith. And he gave it to the lord and by faith in that missional move by the time it was all said and done, his heart was free and god gave him back in his bank account four times the amount when it was all said and done. Don’t underestimate what god wants to do in you and I know some of you’re sitting here, you’re like, wait a second, so if I give, those are the kinds of things that I can get? Some of you’re like I don’t want a baby, I’m out. No. What I’m saying is that when you turn your heart to Jesus, amazing things happen. The key to a life of miracles is do whatever he tells you to do. We all want miracles but then we get to these points and we are not sure about that.

Whatever he tells you to do. I’m going to tell you something. In my life, I’m so excited, Colleen and I to be a part of this. This would be the third missional move we get to be a part of. I feel like I’m investing in an investment of an investment. And I have watched in the past god has moved in our lives personally, in our home, emotionally, spiritually, physically. I have watched god do amazing things, so I can’t wait. So I’m not asking you to do something, we are not doing — we’re given the most significant gift we’ve ever given in our lives sacrificing all kinds of things because I want to be a part of this, because I can’t wait to watch what god’s going to do in us and through us. And hear me, you’re never too young to have an impact and you’re never too old to leave a legacy. There is a reason we only talk about the little boy because he was the only one who was willing to give what he had, so he made an impact. There is no mention of any of the other adults there except they ate and were satisfied. How about King David at the end of his life? He gave almost everything that he had for the construction of the temple.

See, we love David’s legacy. We want to be like David killing Goliath. We are just not so sure we want to be like David building the temple. But if David inspires you, let his whole life inspire you and say I’m not too old to leave a legacy and you don’t have too little or too much. If you feel like you have too little, god will take your little and turn it into much. Like one day Jesus is watching this widow put her money in the offering of the temple and he says, I tell you the truth. This poor widow, maybe, she was hopeless, has put in more than all of the others, all of these people gave their gifts out of their wealth. They gave leftovers. But she, out of her poverty, put in all she had to live on. She gave everything she had to god. And even though it wasn’t financially a lot in the world setting, Jesus said it was everything. And he took her little and turned it in the much and he said he takes it personally. If you’re here and that’s you, you’re doing it for Jesus.

And if you’re here and you have got a lot — hear me — god can take your lot and turn it into more than you ever could on your own. In the Acts, Chapter 4, The First Century Church, it says from time to time those who owned the land or houses sold them and brought the money from the sales and put it at the apostle’s feet and it was distributed to anyone as he had need. Okay, catch that. This is the first century church and these people who had a lot are selling what they have got to give it away so the movement of hope — this is only Acts 4, like Jesus has just died and they are giving what they got so the movement of hope could happen. If you got a lot, god can take your lot and turn it into more than you ever could on your own. In fact, if you got a lot, did you ever wonder why you have a lot because I’m smart. Who gave you your mind? Who gave you your breath? Who gave you your life? God gave you a lot so you could be a part of movement of hope.

You’ve been blessed to be a blessing. Is that blessing flowing out of your life or is it just about accumulating more? See, we are all on this journey of grace and generosity, every one of us. Grace and generosity. Grace is receiving the goodness of god in our lives and then when you receive it, you can’t help but respond with generosity and we are all in this journey like maybe you’re here and maybe it’s just like you’ve never given before, you’re considering, you’re kind of not so sure about this whole thing, kind of makes you uncomfortable. Or maybe you’re here and you’ve kind of given for the first time and that’s just like a new thing in your life. You’re figuring out. Maybe you’re here and you give occasionally like you give when it’s a good month, when you can, when you have got extra. Maybe you give intentionally. It’s a regular part of your life and what you do. Maybe, you type and you give god the first and best 10% that he says belongs to him or maybe you give beyond your type sacrificially out of the 90% that god says belongs to you.

We are all on this spectrum. Here is my question. Where are you? You don’t have to tell anybody. I’m just asking you like where are you and you know just like that where you are. Where are you? What if you just took a next step in this process? That’s it. Not asking you to go from here to here. What if you just took a next step and trust the god because you understand this whole thing is about trust. It’s all his. God is saying, do you trust me? And isn’t it interesting that we will trust god with our salvation but not our finances? Isn’t it interesting that we trust god with our soul but not our resources? Here is how I would describe that to you. I don’t know that you then actually trust him with salvation or your soul because it’s impossible to give god the thing you value most, yourself and keep your hands in the pocket. He is saying, do you trust me? Proverb 3, trust in the lord with all your heart, not on your own understanding, even if it doesn’t make sense and you don’t get it, in all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your path straight.

Remember if Jesus is the living hope, then to follow him is to follow hope. To obey him is to align myself with hope. To choose Jesus is to choose hope. This whole missional move is about you following hope. Are you with me on that? See, do you remember the story of the parabola of the talents? We’ve talked about it a little bit in this series. The parabola of talents is Jesus describing to us what the kingdom of heaven is like and he says, a master has three servants and he gives them each a sum of money. One guy gets five, one guy gets two and one guy gets one, represents a sum of money. And he tells them to put it work and he is going away but he will come back and they need to give an account. So the guy with five works hard, turns it into 10. The guy with two works hard, turns it into 4. The guy with one is afraid and he buries it into the ground. And Jesus says, the master comes back and calls them into account.

And the guy with five says, master, look, I took your five and I turned into 10. He says, well done. Good and faithful servant. You’ve been faithful with a few things, I will entrust you with many things. The guy with two steps forward. Master, I took your two and I turned it into four. Well done. Good and faithful servant. You’ve been faithful with a few things, I will entrust you with even greater things. The guy with one steps forward and says, master, I was afraid. So I hid it on the ground. Here it is. He says, you wicked and lazy servant. Take that away from him and give it to the guy with 10. My question for you is how you using what you have in such a way that you will be able to hear the master say well done. Good and faithful servant. Are you using what you have according to the master’s purpose? Not your idea, the master’s purpose for the good of others and glory of god because the only way to expand your life is by stewarding well what you already have.

If you’re not faithful in the little, he says he can’t entrust you with much but when you’re faithful with what you have got, he gives you even more. So if you’re here and you got five talents, hear me. You not only have the opportunity, you have the responsibility to use it according to a master’s plan. When you got one talent, single mother struggling to take a second job so she can give like a two talent person, for those of us with two talents and five talents, it should challenge how we view what we have got. I tell you what, I want to live my life so on the day when I stand before Jesus, he says well done. Good and faithful servant. See the paradox is this. Everything we need to do this missional move is right here. All of it. All of the gifts and the passions and talents and the money and the resources and finances, it’s all right here.

The question is, are you willing to use it or you’re going to keep it buried in the ground? And remember whatever is buried in the ground, you lose in the end anyways. I mean Second Corinthians Chapter 9, just for reference for you if you’re sitting here, you’re thinking I don’t know. Listen. Yes, you will be enriched in every way, Second Corinthians 9, in every way so you can always be generous. He says, you have everything you need to respond to god today. And when we take your gifts, just talking about the people of god, to those who need them, they will thank god. So two good things will resolve from this ministry of giving, the needs of the believers in Jerusalem will be met or in our region, so the good of others and they will joyfully express their thanks to god. They will glorify god. As a result of your ministry, your faith, they will give glory to god. They will have hope for your generosity to them and all the believers will prove that you’re obedient to the good news of Christ.

In other words, he says what Jesus says. Generosity is evidence of salvation. Grace leads you to missional generosity. See, hear me, god is looking for people who don’t love the world so he can entrust the world to them. That’s what he is looking for. Like look at the map, this is what he is — he is looking for people who don’t love the world so he can entrust the world to them. He is looking for people who will take him at his world that we can do greater things than Jesus did, that we have the keys to the kingdom of heaven, that we have the authority to bring the hope to the world around us. See, I’m telling you I don’t think we’re the first ones god has asked to do this. I’m convinced that god has offered this vision to other churches along the way and for whatever reason they said no. I want us to say yes, because I don’t want to live my life watching this vision happen through the hands of someone else, because guess what, god is going to do this. He is inviting us to do it with him.

See, I think we wait around and we are like god, move; god, move; god, do something about the darkness, the brokenness. I think as the time goes, like I already made the biggest move I’m going to make. I gave you Jesus. What do you mean you’re waiting for me? I’ve already given you, everything that you got; your gifts, you passion, your mind, your finances, your resources, your life, your breath, your very existence. I have given you all of it. I’m waiting on you to move. We are like, god, look how broken the schools are. Look at how bad business is and the government and the chaos and the divorce and the pain and the cancer and god is like, I know and you’re waiting on me but I have told you, you give them something to eat. I’m not letting you send them away. I’m waiting to see what you got and what are you willing to do with it. You’re with me on that?

Okay. So it brings us to this point. Next, week is commitment weekend. And next week we are going to come with our commitment cards and we are going to come with our commitment and if you didn’t get one, they are in the seat bag in front of you. If you didn’t get one of these packets, it’s got one in there, all the stuff. And basically here is where we are at. It’s time to make a choice because following Jesus is a choice. So we are asking every individual, every family to consider making a two-year gift above and beyond what you already do. Hear me, don’t divert what you already give. That just allows us to do what we do today. This has to be the beyond that because it’s expansion and let your yes be yes. Don’t write something down there to think you’re going to get bonus points from god and not fulfill it over the two years. We are going on your word by faith. So I want to encourage you to take time this week to process this, fill it out with your family, however, you want to do it and then come next week with your commitment, write the name of someone or something you’re hoping for on the card and then come with an initial offering.

Because you see, sooner we have the resources, the quicker we can do this and we are already seeing opportunities pop up and when you give something to it, it connects your heart in a completely different way. And if you’re here and you’re like, man, I just have no interest in that. Okay, that’s fine. Here is my question, why not? That’s a fair question, isn’t it? Like I get it. If you don’t want to do it, that’s fine, but here — why not? And as you process that with Jesus, like Psalm 139, here is a good verse for all of us this week. Search me oh god and know my heart. Test me and know my anxious thoughts. Why am I afraid? Point out anything in me that offends you and lead me along the path of everlasting life. What if you just said, god, I want you to know my heart and I want to be free. Here is why I’m afraid of. Here is what I’m stressed out about. I don’t know I want to choose you but I need — just process with him.

Ask, listen, respond. See, the gospel is free but to spread it is not. Jesus sacrificed everything so you can have hope and if we want other people to have hope, we are going to have to sacrifice something too. Like someone else’s faith did all of this for you. Like catch this, today when you walk in here, someone else’s faith opens the door for you. Someone else’s faith serves you coffee. Someone else’s faith invests in your kids. Someone else’s faith raises up your student. Someone else’s faith leads you in worship. Someone else’s faith preaches the word of god to you. Someone else’s faith administers to you. Someone else’s faith pays for all of this. What’s your — hang on–what’s your faith doing? That’s really the question. And here is what I want you to say, oh my goodness, don’t miss this. Don’t miss this moment where Jesus is saying, let’s go to a new level, me and you.

Let’s go to a new place of conversation and trust and hope and love and life, like I don’t mess this man. It’s time to build a new history with god. Listen to me. The wise men were given the opportunity to give their treasures to pay for Jesus’s childhood. The little boy was given the opportunity to give his five loaves and two fish to feed the crowd and be remembered forever. The small group of women had the opportunity to fund Jesus’ ministry on earth. A man was given the opportunity to give his donkey so Jesus could ride into Jerusalem to die. Someone else was able to give their upper room so the holy spirit could be poured out upon the disciple. Someone else was able to give their tomb for the crucified Jesus to be buried and rise again from the grave. This is an opportunity that god is presenting you not the person next to you to say, what am I going to do in you and through you and for you in this process.

Oh man, don’t miss it. Don’t miss it. You’re made for this. Your spirit craves the impossible. So let’s go move some mountains, walk on water, defeat some giants and do the impossible in Jesus’ name. The vision is clear and the mission is urgent. The only question that’s left is what are you willing to do with what’s in your hand? What does god want to do in you and through you over these next two years? May the grace of Jesus lead to missional generosity. May you be a hope carrier and may we be a movement of hope.

So we close our eyes and let me just ask you what do you feel like god wants to say to you today? Just right now in this moment, like just turn your attention to the holy spirit. What’s he whispering? Where is he drawing you, encouraging you, maybe challenging you? See the grace of god is all over this room. It’s all over your life. Sometimes the way we receive grace is by faith responding to it. So maybe even right now just say to the lord, say Jesus, would you speak to me this week? I’m asking you what you want me to do right now. I’m afraid. I’m a little nervous. Maybe stress, anxious, maybe you feel hopeless in your own life. I get all that. So look to the living hope. Look to the living grace and say Jesus, would you draw my heart after you in a new way? Lord, we want to receive your invitation to be a movement of hope in our generation in this time in this place but you rise us up as hope carriers, to live missionally generous because of your missional grace. We love you Jesus. Thank you for who you are and what you do. In your name, we pray. Amen.

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