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Archive for November, 2013

The Whisper Challenge – Week 4

This is the last “whisper challenge”. It is our prayer that you have taken great steps over the last month. If you have not, however, pressed into this as you should, it’s certainly not too late – start today. Get real. No more going through the motions. After all, when we go halfway who do we think we’re fooling anyway?

We can say we trust God with our lips yet not trust Him. He knows. REAL recognizes REAL.

We can say “I’m sorry God, please forgive me.” at church then leave and commit the same sin we asked forgiveness over. He knows. REAL recognizes REAL.

We can do things for God and in His name, yet not be doing it in relationship with Him. We can work with worshiping. He knows. REAL recognizes REAL.

What is God asking you to trust Him with today? What do you need to truly repent of right now? Will you do whatever He asks you to do no matter how small it may be?

This week begin to practice opening yourself up to God through practice. As you begin every day ask God one of the following questions (use them all through the week – mix it up:

  • What would you have me do today?
  • Is there anyone I need to encourage today?
  • Where would you have me go today?
  • Is there anyone I need to call or visit this week?
  • How can I serve my family, my spouse, my parents or siblings (students) or my co-workers today?
  • Is there anything I need to correct in my heart today?
  • Is there anything you would like to show me today?
Keep that journal with you (or start it – come on, you can DO it!) and keep a record of the Whisper, what you believe He says and WHERE it is that He said it. Inbox any cool stories to me.
Please know that I am praying with and for you.

The Whisper Challenge – Week 3

“…Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.” – Luke 22:42 ESV

In this week’s Whisper Challenge you are going to get really serious about getting in tune with what God is leading in your life.

Prepare your heart to meet with God

Make sure you listen to “The Whisper Week 3″ message before you do this exercise.

Get alone with your heavenly Father and ask Him to help you prioritize the goal of hearing from Him so that you can work on positioning yourself to be more in tune with the whispers of God. (The goal being to never miss another “whisper” from God.)

In your journal (or a notebook) note three or four aspirations that are on your mind lately. Then beside each one, jot down a few questions that invite God to speak into that goal (you will see an example below). Also, as you interact with your heavenly Father, pay attention to goals that He may be asking you to set aside for now as well as new goals He may be prompting you to add to your list.

Example: Get out of debt.

  • How am I supposed to tithe when money is so tight?
  • What needs should go unmet while I work to get out of debt?
  • What do you want me to learn through this process?
  • What ways should my lifestyle shift once I am out of debt?

Work this process – don’t just talk, listen. Allow the Whisper to lead you.

 

The Whisper Challenge – Week 2

…but it wasn’t Eli calling Samuel

“Now the boy Samuel was ministering to the LORD in the presence of Eli. And the word of the LORD was rare in those days; there was no frequent vision… Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD, and the word of the LORD had not yet been revealed to him.” (1 Samuel 3:1-7 ESV)

This week’s “Whisper Challenge” will definitely prepare you to hear the Whisper.

Preparing your heart to meet with God

Challenge for this week: (Hint: This will be easier and more effective if you will ask someone you trust to hold you accountable to this task. Even better, INVITE THEM to join you in the Whisper Challenge)

 

  1. Select a time of day where you are at your best: (early morning)     (mid morning)      (lunchtime)       (mid afternoon)        (evening)           (late night)
  2. Make an appointment to meet with Jesus each day over the next week. Put it on your calendar, set your alarm, or do whatever it takes to remind you of your meeting with Him where you will set aside 15 – 20 minutes to “practice the presence of God” by trying to observe the following.

    1. Select a passage of scripture to read (select your own or use the following list: (John 1:1-18)  (Psalm 1)  (Ephesians 6:10-20)  (Prov, 8) (1 Corinth. 13:1-13)  (Psalm 51)  (John 15)Read the passage selection through a few times and reflect on the verses in a focused way asking God to speak to you.

    2. Jot down notes about anything that stands out to you regarding what these verses may be saying.
    3. Ask God for additional insight that is relevant to your life
    4. Write out a simple prayer of commitment to living based on the biblical concept or concepts you have just read.
    5. Pray those words back to God, meaning them from the depth of your heart.

 

Share your experience with a friend over the next week.

The Whisper Challenge – Week One

[11] And he said, “Go out and stand on the mount before the LORD.” And behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind tore the mountains and broke in pieces the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. And after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. [12] And after the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a low whisper. (1 Kings 19:11-12 ESV)

“What are you doing here?”

The biggest part of being able to hear the whisper of God or His divine promptings has to do with the condition of our heart. In other words, are we in the right place to hear from God?

Prepare your heart to hear from God

 

This week will you prepare your heart to hear from God? If so, get a piece of paper (or your journal) and take time to purge your heart by doing and writing down your personal answers on the following exercise:

 

 

  1. Is there any unconfessed sin hindering my ability to hear from God? (Use the check-list below)
    • Are you allowing your mind to be transformed by God’s word on a regular basis? (Romans 12:1-2)
    • Are you faithful to a church? (Hebrews 10:24-25)
    • Are you harboring unforgiveness toward anyone? (Matthew 6:14-15)
    • Is worry dominating your life? (Matthew 6:25-34)
    • Are there commandments of God which you know you are violating but you continue in disobedience?
    • Are there attitudes and actions that are inconsistent with who you are supposed to be in Christ? (Colossians 3:8)
      List all of the areas where you are guilty. Now, will you confess them to Jesus and turn from these sins by asking for Jesus forgiveness? (1John 1:8-9)
  2. Are there any earthly concerns or creature comforts that are distracting me from being able to hear from God or from being obedient to Him?
    • Earthly worries: family concerns, financial concerns, time concerns, health concerns, career concerns.
    • Creature comforts: Pleasures I enjoy, hobbies that consume me, my love for security, my reputation, a relationship.
  3. Is there a simple step or task right now that I feel God wants me to do that I have been putting off or trying to convince myself isn’t important? Write it down. Will you do it this week or begin making plans to carry it out in the next few days?

Candy Crush, Share the Love Week, Beast Fest.

We had a great night last night for Candy Crush 2013 at Biggs Park Mall!

We are so thankful for the opportunity to team with the City of Lumberton and give thousands of people a safe, fun and encouraging place to gather together. We are also thankful for the chance to “vertically” connect with thousands in our community we would not otherwise meet. We will continue to look for opportunities to get outside the walls, team with our communities and to “BE” in the places where our community IS.

We have a few more opportunities to do this very thing:

1st – Lumberton Christian Care (the Soup Kitchen) feeds today from 10:00-11:30 am. They are located at 305 E 1st St, Lumberton, NC

2nd – We will be feeding the West Bladen HS football team this afternoon before their game. If you are interested in helping at 3pm drive to back of W. Bladen HS to cafeteria.

3rd – My Refuge (Soup Kitchen) feeds today from 4:30-6:00 pm. They are also celebrating their 2 year anniversary tomorrow at 11:30am to 1:30 pm. They need sliced tomatoes and leaf lettuce-enough for 200 sandwiches that you can bring to them. They will also need people to serve food. My Refuge is located at 2020 W 5th St, Lumberton, NC

4th – We will clean the W.Bladen Football Stadium directly after the game tonight at 9pm. If you are interested in serving meet at back gate of stadium.

5th – One last way and exciting way to serve our community is TOMORROW morning at the Bladenboro Beast Fest. We will help vendors set up booth area from  7-8:30 am. There are various other service opportunities from 9 am – 2 pm. Meet in Downtown Bladenboro near First Citizens Bank.

We also want to invite all of our Vertical attenders to join us at noon tomorrow (Saturday, Nov. 2nd) at Beast Fest as Vertical Worship takes the stage. Wear that Vertical tshirt and join us in front of the big stage as we have a Saturday afternoon worship session. If you LOVE Vertical’s music here is a great opportunity to take it in. Remember, wear that Vertical tee… we want to represent!!!

Last thing, I am so excited that Sunday morning we begin our new series, “The Whisper”! You do not want to miss this opportunity to grow in your ability to hear God speak into your life. Invite that friend who has fallen out of church and tell them this is some teaching that THEY WANT /NEED TO HEAR! 

I love you all – we are so blessed to be part of this movement of God in our region. See you at some of these events!