If you want to be a great communicator, always listen through the ears of those you are speaking too. How will they hear this? How will this effect them? If, before we speak, we listen to our words through the ears of those who are effected by our words, we will consciously communicate. I know I’m guilty within a passionate moment of unconsciously communicating, and it’s because my words are being spoken without the filter of allowing my words to first be heard…by me! Listen through their ears and your words will change!
What if, everyday, in every trial, and in every victory, we were willing to accept whatever happens as a preparation opportunity. I believe that God has great things for you and I that he has prepared in advance for us to do. (Eph 2:10). I don’t believe that a life in Christ consists of dead-ends. I don’t believe that God is intimidated by our circumstances, but instead, He can use our circumstances to prepare us for what He’s prepared for us. He works all things together for the good of those that love him and are called according to His purpose. (Rom 8:28) So, no matter what season of life you are in, be willing to be prepared…God’s preparing you in this season for the next. Don’t become bitter; become focused!
Just because you are in a difficult marriage or a frustrating job or facing any other difficulty, doesn’t mean you are necessarily outside of God’s will. We often think, if we are in God’s will things should be easy or convenient, but while the apostle Paul sat in prison, he realized obedience within hardships isn’t a contradiction to God’s will but a direct positioning from Him and a call to obedience in Him no matter what. If you’re facing a mountain, maybe you are in the exact will of God and instead of praying for a different terrain or praying for a different direction that would allow you to not have to overcome the mountain, God wants you to climb the mountain in obedience! Maybe God’s will is more about your obedience than your position, more about you than who you marry, more about you than the job you take, more about you than the city you live in…maybe God is far less concerned about the “what’s” of our life and more about the “who” – the “who” we are in the “what’s”.
For quite a while now, I have been praying about what to do with this blog. I have frankly just lost the desire to blog and yet I still want to encourage the people God has brought to Next Level Church and find ways to engage throughout the week.
Recently, God answered that prayer by giving me a great idea. What if I could reach people right where they are, the way they already communicate? What if they didn’t have to read something long, but could just digest a short burst of encouragement? What if I didn’t have to spend hours writing a perfectly composed mini-sermon as a blog post?
Tvotions are 140 character messages to help you stay focused on Jesus all week long sent via text right to your phone. This will not be news and updates from NLC and you won’t get more than 1 per day. Just short but powerful encouragement from my heart sent straight to you wherever you go. Sign up HERE to get encouraging and challenging Tvotions from me sent directly to your mobile device.
I’m so humbled and blown away by what God is doing at our church and throughout New England. I’ve believed from the day we started NLC that we would see one of the greatest moves of God New England has ever seen! People always ask me: “can you believe what God is doing at NLC?” The truth is, YES I CAN, actually when it comes to NLC my question is never IF, it’s always WHEN. I have never wondered IF we will have dozens of locations, IF will we reach tens of thousands of people, IF we will see over 100,000 people give their life to Christ, IF we will be able to bless and encourage the local church in this region. The question isn’t IF, it’s simply WHEN. I am as confident of the vision of NLC and it’s impact on this region for Christ as I am my love for my kids. Now, understand I love my kids WAY more than NLC but I still live, breathe, and have given my life to this church! In the early days that confident assurance was seen as pride by our critics, but now that it’s happening, it’s seen as prophecy Funny how 3 years ago I was just a kid with a dream that will soon end up as another pastor swallowed up by the disappointment of New England. I’ve never had a dream for NLC or New England – it’s always been a vision! I can’t explain the difference, it’s beyond words…a dream has the possibility to not come true; a vision has already happened and you’re just waiting for it to come to pass.
I talked with my (our) lead team over lunch yesterday and we all had tears in our eyes when we think of what God has done in three years. It’s honestly MIND BLOWING! The mentors who are behind us, the growth of Gods church, the generosity of God’s people, the world changing volunteers, the staff, the different locations, the locations to come, Kaleo Coffee, the conferences, his favor, but most importantly the thousands of lives forever changed! BECAUSE OF YOU NLC, lives and families will never be the same!
Here’s the best part! We haven’t even boarded the plane yet…really, I’m not just saying that. I truly believe if this were a scale of 1-10, 10 being the influence of NLC for Christ the day I die, we are below a 1. We haven’t even made it to the scale yet. There are many more people in the cities we live in and the large cities throughout New England to reach with the love of Christ.
Here are some pics of this past weekend! Because of you NLC, three portable locations were rocking with God’s glory being revealed!
Our first experience at Kaleo on Thursday night!
Our second experience at Kaleo on Friday night.
Foyer between first and second experience at Kaleo on Friday night.
Our third experience at Kaleo on Friday night.
Our fourth experience at our Portland, Maine location on Saturday morning.
The line that went on forever to get into the fifth experience at our Newington location.
Our fifth experience at our Newington location. (room was about 130% full)
The line waiting to get into the sixth experience in Newington. (this was a crazy transition)
A shot of the foyer in Newington, the theater manager told the police that more people came to church than to the movies that day!
Our sixth experience at our Newington location.
The pictures that matter most are the faces of those who gave their life to Christ this past weekend! We didn’t take a picture of each person and I probably wouldn’t post them if we did NLC, as your pastor I’m very proud of you, I love you and can’t wait to see what God has in store for us in 2012! We turn 4 on Easter and as you can imagine, it’s going to be AWESOME! See you this weekend!