Nick Vujicic of Life without Limbs: "What is Nick's problem? What is Nick's big need? You will not ever, ever, ever come to a realization of the fullness of God until you come to the fullness of needing Him. The biggest disability that we have as human beings is that we don't really need Him today."
The Lamb who Came is the Lion who is to Come: The Certainty of Christ's Return and Why it Matters
Fearfully Made for a Wonderful Purpose: Why You and Your Mission Matter (9 am service)
Fearfully Made for a Wonderful Purpose: Why You and Your Mission Matter (5:30 pm service)
Fearfully Made for a Wonderful Purpose: Why You and Your Mission Matter (11 am service)
Why it Matters that Eternal/Abundant Life Starts Now
The One Hope for You and for the World: Why it Matters that the Church is Healthy and Defined Correctly
The Person of the Holy Spirit: Understanding Who He is and Why That Matters
Salvation: Two Equal and Opposite Errors and Why Getting Them Straight Matters
Jesus: Who Do You Say He is and Why It Matters
Understanding Our Total Depravity and Why it Matters
The Image of God in Man and Why it Matters
The Character and Nature of God: Who He is and Why it Matters
Who Is the Trinity, and Why It Matters
The Truth About Truth: Where to Find it and Why it Matters
Todd Wagner: Good morning. I am really excited to introduce you to somebody who I think can communicate this essential truth. Some of you are here, and you see this big XII behind us, and you're like, "What in the world are they all about here with that?" If you've never been here before, we're in the middle of a series. This is the eleventh of 12 truths that we're saying if you don't get exactly right, the ramifications of its impact on your life are enormous.
This week, the truth that we're saying you cannot miss is this simple truth: you are fearfully made for a wonderful purpose. If you don't understand God loves you and is your Master who created you as a mission for your life, you're missing out on all the life your Master created you for. When we started thinking about this, I thought about Nick, and I thought about the way he lives his life and the man he is.
The Scripture says in Ephesians 2:10, "For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them." I thought, "You know what? If I can show you somebody, who is God's workmanship, who can't walk the way you walk, who is doing it in ways that are exceedingly, abundantly more than many of us are doing, maybe you can get a glimpse that you're fearfully made for a wonderful purpose." So I am really humbled to have God's servant here, my friend Nick Vujicic. Let's hear from him. Nick, God bless you.
Nick Vujicic: I appreciate it. Thank you. Good morning, everybody. I am not from the South. I'm from the real south, Down Under, Australia. I've lived in California for the last three years. I want to thank Pastor Todd so much and Watermark Church for having me here. It's fantastic to be here. I've been blessed by God to be his workmanship, his mouthpiece, and a servant of the Most High God to show people how God can turn beauty from ashes, brokenness, or lack of and where God can complete you on the inside.
As human beings, we're always looking for something to complete us on the outside. But there's no point being complete on the outside when you're broken on the inside. Amen? So this morning I really want to just share with you, from my heart, the truths about God's Word and his sovereignty.
What does that mean? I want to talk about that. I want to talk about how God never makes a mistake. No matter what you pray for, God is still God. I love that story back in the Old Testament when you have Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. They're in the city, and their king says, "You must bow down to the god we created," and they said, "No. We will not bow down to your god. We will bow down to the Living God, our God, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob."
They said, "But if you don't bow to our god, then we're going to throw you into the fire. They said, "Okay. If you do that, that's okay because God is going to save us from the flames. But if he doesn't, he is still God." I want that thought, that seed, in your mind today that will give you the new perspective about God and his plan for your life.
I ask you if you do have a pen and paper near you, even if you normally don't take notes, this is the one to take notes on. I'm going to be quoting some Scriptures that have changed my life. To give you a bit of background to my story… My story is his story about how much he loved me and how much his grace has provided me all I need. I'm 27 years old. Just had my birthday, so 48 hours ago, I turned 27. I've been traveling around the world. It's been 27 years, 27 young years. I feel 47 at times. I thank God for that.
He has blessed me with a wonderful family. I have a brother and sister who were born after me with no disabilities. I was born without limbs with no medical reason at all. My mom was a nurse. She delivered hundreds of babies before I was born. She knew exactly what to do in her pregnancy and what not to do in her pregnancy. They had ultrasounds done, naturally. They found out that I had no arms and no legs, not during the ultrasound, but when I said, "Hi!" It was a little bit of a shock and a huge tragedy.
In fact, 11 months before I was born, my mom and dad planted a church in Melbourne, Australia. The question is the goodness of God. How can we say God is perfect? How can we say God is good? You know the saying, "God is good all the time, and all the time God is good"? I'm not going to get you to say that, but what I want you to know this morning is me saying, "God is good," may offend you.
If you don't know who God is in the fullness of him and his character and his love and his perfection, and you don't know the knowledge of who God is through the Word of God, you may be offended when someone says, "God is good" when your mother just died, when you just found out you have cancer, or your son was born without arms and legs.
Could you imagine my parents and someone coming in and telling them? They're shocked. They can't breathe. My dad's stomach is turned upside down. He can't believe what he's seeing. Then someone would come in and then say, "Hey, God is good." Right.
We don't see the goodness of God in pain and suffering. You know what? It's interesting how obviously, in our mind, a circumstantial change would then give us an internal change. If God gave Nick arms and legs miraculously, then everything's going to be okay. It would make sense that God, who loves me, who can do miracles, should do a miracle. If I have the right faith, faith to move a mountain (How much is that? It's the faith of a mustard seed) then miracles can happen.
Do miracles happen today? They do. I've seen them with my own eyes. You may not believe me, but that doesn't change the truth that I've seen them. I've seen blind people seeing and deaf people hearing. I saw a deaf woman or hearing impaired as you say here in the United States. I don't know. I'm disabled. Big deal. That's what everybody says. What do you think about the word? We'll talk about the word, "disabled," in a second. I'm going to find out your disability in a second.
I saw a woman who couldn't hear for 10 years, and she started hearing. This is only four weeks in Columbia. We spoke to 160,000 people in Columbia. In 9 days we did 10 cities. We saw 50,000 people come to Jesus Christ. I've seen people who were lame walking. I've seen crooked backs become straight. I've seen feet come out (where one leg was shorter than the other, and they became equal) right before my eyes. A crooked back for four years became straight within 10 seconds of prayer. So we know that God does miracles. I'm not kidding you. I have a pair of shoes in my closet, just in case he says, "Yes." I would be stupid not to.
What happens when God says, "No"? Who is God? What has God done for Nick Vujicic? What is Nick's problem? What is Nick's need? You will not ever, ever, ever come to the fullness of God until you come to the fullness of needing him. The biggest disability we have as human beings is we don't really need him today.
When someone needs something, and God provides that need, of course, you're going to be excited. But when you've experienced the feeling and touch of his hand on knowing that his grace is sufficient… Read 2 Corinthians 12:9-13 later about how the apostle Paul says, " 'My grace is sufficient for you…' says God." That experience, that joy, that peace, that rest, that comfort, that gives us so much ground to worship him. Where you don't need to be told, "We're going to come here to church and now you're going to worship him." It's an expression and overflow of the heart.
If this gentleman in the front in the orange shirt gives me $1 million (thank you if you have that), I'm going to be overjoyed. But if he's done nothing for me, I'm not just going to go, "Thank you, thank you, thank you." You're going think I'm crazy if I just say, "Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you."
What has God done? What has God set free in me that I would be joyful without arms and legs? Here it is. Jeremiah 29:11 says, "'For I know the plans that I have for you,' declares the LORD, '…plans to give you a future and a hope.'" Check this out in verse 12 through 14. Are you ready for this? It says, "'Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. I will be found by you,' declares the LORD."
What a promise. But it's so hard to believe that when I'm born without arms and legs. A plan to prosper me? A plan that won't harm me? It looks a little harmful to me. It looked a little harmful to my parents. I was seeking God as a child, and people would come up to me when I was having a bad day and say, "Nick, everything's going to be okay." The, "Everything is going to be okay," as a child made me wonder, "How can you tell me everything is going to be okay?"
Why? They knew something I didn't. They believed something I didn't. They believed that verse. I didn't understand that verse. I thought, "God, surely you've forgotten me." In fact, I went through such a deep depression as a child that I told my mom at 8 years old I was going to commit suicide, and at age 10, I tried.
I went in my bathtub, and I told Mom and Dad, "I just want to relax." I had about four inches of water in there. I turned over. I couldn't do it the first time, couldn't do it the second time, and couldn't do it the third time. I just couldn't do it. I could do it physically if I wanted to. I tried to hold my breath and all that sort of thing, but the thought came to my mind, and it stopped me in my tracks.
I thought, "Nick, you're about to leave a lifetime of guilt and pain on your parents' shoulders for the rest of their lives. Do you really want to do that?" I said, "No," so I didn't go through with it. I went through ups and downs. What would you give me the next day if you saw me at age 10 to make me feel better? Are you going to give me money? Are you going to give me some friends? No. They all have arms and legs. They don't understand me. Even my own parents could only hold me when I cried. No one understood me.
I wanted love. Love that I could believe in and love that could conquer all. The love of God. At that time, I felt like he had rejected me. "Where is God? Where are you? What are your plans that you have for me?" I got angry at him. At age 15, I read John 9, where a man was born blind. Jesus was going through a village with his disciples, and they came to that place where a man was born blind.
The biggest question of my life, obviously, as people come up to me is, "What happened?" I don't know why I was born this way. So in John 9, people asked Jesus, "Why was this man born that way? What happened?" Jesus said, "It was [done] so that the works of God might be displayed in him." I was like, "Whoa." I even stopped reading on. It was the first time I read that story. Just the first three verses of John 9 changed my life.
I realized just because I don't know why I was born this way doesn't mean Jesus doesn't know why. Just because you don't know why a zero has gone from your bank account doesn't mean God doesn't know why. You don't know why God lets your rebellious teenager go so far away from you that they don't even want to hear from you, but God does. As long as you keep on praying and believe in his faithfulness, Romans 8:28 says, "All things come together for the good for those who love him."
Philippians 4:13 says, "I can do all things through [Christ] who strengthens me." Philippians 4:6-7 says, "Be anxious for nothing…" That's the hardest thing to do. Are you kidding me Pastor Todd and evangelist Nick Vujicic? You all know what it means to be anxious and scared of what's about to happen, or how it's going to work itself out, and what God has.
What does Philippians 4:6-7 say? It says this. "Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends [surpasses] all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
"Wow, Nick knows a lot of verses." Why? Just because I wanted to do it for the presentation? Yes. I've spoken 1,500 times, but I'll tell you why I've spoken 1,500 times and quoted these verses. They're written on the tablet of my heart. Why are they written on the tablet of my heart? They've changed my life. Why? The Word of God is truth, and who the Son sets free is free indeed.
Even just yesterday I had two of my best friends, man and wife, Nate and Christy… They're my best friends from Australia, and they've been out here with me for 8 months with me being my accountability partners and my awesome spiritual warriors. I felt like Frodo (you know, The Lord of the Rings) when he's carrying the ring. You feel so heavy. It's just a little ring, but it's the heaviness of the calling, the heaviness of the purpose.
I want you to understand, I'm a 27-year-old evangelist who's spoken to 3 million people, and we've seen 400,000 souls come to Jesus Christ, and 700 million people know around me… I've seen governments. I've spoken to presidents. I've spoken to sex slaves. I've spoken to orphans. I've spoken to billionaires. I've spoken to a lot of different people. There is a big calling on my life.
I was telling them yesterday, "I feel like Frodo. This is crazy. Something so small can become so big," meaning there was a decision I had to make that was quite heavy in the spiritual realm. It was difficult, humanly, emotionally, and mentally speaking. But guess what? I got through it. God gave me that truth through them. They said, "You're not carrying it. Let Jesus carry it for you." Then you feel, "Ah." That's right. It's not on my shoulders.
Look at me. I am weak, but I am strong. You can see the strength of God in me because you see the weakness of me and my flesh. It's Jesus who shines. It's Jesus who carries you. It's Jesus who forgives you. It's Jesus who changes you. When you receive Jesus Christ, you have the Holy Spirit in you, and that transforms you from the inside out. Can we turn to Psalm 1, please?
Do you want to know my biggest problem? It wasn't having no arms and no legs. This is the problem I had. Nick is a human being. That's my problem. Why? Because every human being is a descendant from Adam and Eve. Why is that a big problem? Every human being that's a descendant from Adam and Eve is born into sin. If you don't believe me that every human being is born into sin and evil and selfishness and pride and jealousy, all you need to go is get two 3‑year‑old boys, put them in one room, and give them one toy. You'll see evil.
If I've lied once, I'm a liar. If I've stolen once, I'm a thief. If I've sinned once, I'm a sinner. That's my problem. What's the point of having arms and legs on earth when you don't know where you're going? This 90 years, if God gives me 90-odd-years, praise God, where am I going? If there is no life after death then everything including love, including relationships, including marriage, including the greatest gifts on earth given by God for every single one of us,is meaningless. If there is no eternity, then everything is meaningless.
But if there is an eternity, and if Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life, then everything makes sense. Why? Why does it make sense that God makes a man without arms and legs? Because he wanted to use a man without arms and legs to be his hands and feet in a way that no one else has ever been used. You know you have to get your foot in the door? He gave me only a little foot. So the door has to open up only a little bit for my foot to get in. Do you understand me?
God knows all things. If God gave me no arms and no legs…not took away my arms and legs. He gave me the gift of having no arms and no legs…he put me in a position and perspective and joy and hunger to say, "Okay God. If you're not going to change the circumstance, then I'm going to believe your Word and believe you're going to use it. I believe you're going to bring another soul to Jesus Christ."
I tell you guys today, I honestly tell you from the depths of my heart, what a sad day in heaven it would've been if God had given me what I wanted at age 8, and I got arms and legs. At the end of my life, I went to God and said, "God, what was the biggest mistake I made on earth?" He'd say, "Nick, you wanted arms and legs." I'd ask him, "Was it wrong to ask you for arms and legs?" He would say, "No."
Scripturally I can back that up. God invites you to request your requests and ask him for the desires of your heart. But seek you first the kingdom of God. Why? Even the worst part of your life can advance the kingdom of God. His righteousness has made me whole. I am a servant of God. I'm a child of God, forgiven of my sins. I'm an ambassador of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, and I stand in front of the gates of hell and redirect traffic.
Big deal you have money. Big deal. You have money? Great. Money, drugs, sex, alcohol… Teenagers, sex isn't love. You can wake up in the morning, and you can still think to yourself, "Do they still really love me?" What you really want is love. Where does that love come from? God.
If you put your happiness in temporary things, your happiness will be temporary. But if you put your hope and trust in God, I'll tell you he is going to surprise you. Not only is it an exciting life, but you will go through depths of despair and loneliness and hurt, but then you will hold him. When you hold him, he holds you. He will carry you through, and you'll find that God is faithful. He will never make a mistake.
Don't you ever believe I'm suffering more than you because I believe being in a broken home is worse than having no arms and no legs. Pain is pain. Brokenness is brokenness. Let me finish this story of me and God upstairs in heaven. God gives me arms and legs at age 8. I'm in heaven. God says, "No, it wasn't wrong to ask me for arms and legs, but the problem was this. You wanted arms and legs more than you wanted me. That is the problem."
Don't worship God saying, "Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you," hoping he's going to give you something more. If you aren't really thanking him for what he's already done, you don't know who my God is. You don't know the God of the Bible then. You don't know him. You're not walking with him. You're not praying every day. You're not thanking him every day. You're not trusting him every day. You're not asking God to show you more about what he wants you to do. He's not done with you.
I don't care if you have the wife, and you have the car, and you have the house. I don't care if you're a teenager and you dyed your hair gray. You more elderly people, I want you to know God is not done with you yet. Do you know what a ministry it is just to pray for your family? What an honor it is that your prayer on your righteousness' behalf, on the gift and grace of God, you can pray for someone's salvation? You can shine light and be the salt of the earth. What an honor it is. There is nothing else to live for. Don't lose your fire. Don't lose your hunger. When you come and you find the fullness of who God is all you want to do is this in someone. It says,
"Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither; and whatever he does shall prosper. The ungodly are not so, but are like the chaff which the wind drives away. Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.For the Lord knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the ungodly shall perish."
I want to be righteous. I want to be a tree deeply planted in the Word, not just believing what someone says. "Only God is going to give you arms and legs." Well, okay. If he does do it. Don't tell me that you are certain that he will. I've heard that before. He's going to give me arms and legs in heaven. You're praying for arms and legs? Let it be God's will, not my will. Why? God's will is always better than mine. What would you rather have if you were in my position? Arms and legs or save one more soul (forget about the 400,0000)?
God in heaven would say, "Nick, if you only asked me for what I wanted…for my will…400,000 more people would've been here in heaven." What a depressing eternity. God is good. He is perfect. If you don't thank him today for what he's done, then you don't know him. I know my God. When I worship, I worship him. When I pray, I pray. Why? He is so beautiful. His love, his joy, his peace. Something I have is free.
Go to him. Get on your knees. It isn't just coming to church. It isn't just giving to the poor. It's about knowing him. When I see God face to face, I will stand in judgment day, and he's going to ask me two questions. "Do you know me?" and "Who'd you bring?" That's my opinion. It's not scriptural. There's the Word. It's free. I've spoken in nations where if you bring one of these books into that country you're out. Today, do you know him?
Do I believe God can give me arms and legs? Yes. Do I have shoes in my closet? Yes. Do I still pray for arms and legs? Yes. Isn't that interesting? I still want to know how it feels to get on a bike, crash into a pole, and break a leg. How selfish is that? The desires of your heart are in the hands of God. When you trust him, you will see, in due season, fruit. There will be times where your tree will have no leaves, where you feel like there are no leaves, or you feel like this tree is dead.
I was in China and saw a tree with no leaves but mandarins on it. God was like, "Even when you don't see leaves, there is still fruit." Planted by the waters. Are you planted by the living waters of God? Have you positioned yourself in a place of no sin? You cannot hide your sin from yourself or God. You cannot grow in your relationship with God or serve him when you willingly know or you willingly have secret sins that you hide from your spouse that will choke you and cut off your roots to the living waters.
When you cut that sin, and you be real… "Well, Nick, I've asked God to forgive me of my sin, and I've surrendered my life to him, but I'm still struggling with sin." Who's not? I'm not saying that to say, "Okay. They can just deal with that." I'm telling you, I know God has transformed my mind to a point where I have the previous life of Nick (lust, greed, pride of the flesh, lust of the eyes, the pride of life, the whole thing). God has transformed me.
I want to encourage you today that when you start with the need for God and you ask him into your life, he does transform you to a point where you are willing to cut away sin. I want you to know that nothing will be perfect here on earth, but that's where we strive and hunger for righteousness.
Philippians 1:6 says, "…being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." Do you see that the victory over all of life and all of sin and all of death is needing God and loving him fully, praying, being with him, and serving others. It all stems from your need for him? You can't do this on your own. You can't. You can't forget the failures of the past. You can't ignore the fear of the future. But when you put your hope in God, day by day, he transforms you.
"Nick, are you happy all the time?" No, but I trust him. He loves me. He loves you. Don't compare your righteousness to mine. Compare your righteousness to Jesus. Jesus, who had no sin then took my sin on his shoulders and paid the price.
Teenagers, if you come to church and you haven't given your life to Jesus Christ, this is why Jesus died on the cross. I was supposed to die for my sin. I was not supposed to go to heaven. But because I believe that Jesus died in my place, and he took my sin, and he shed his blood, and he paid the price of sin, I am. If you don't believe me, it's all in the Word of God. Romans 6:23, "…the wages of sin is death…"
If you believe in Jesus Christ as the Son of God, as the only man who rose himself from the dead, then the Spirit of God that raised Jesus Christ from the dead then will live in me. That's my assurance. That's my hope. That, and God saying, "Nick, well done my good and faithful one." Not because I was perfect, but because I let him carry me. I let him change me. I let him use me, and I still praised him in the storm. That is when you're free.
One of our shirts says, "Soar." Isaiah 40:31 says, "But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles…" I don't need arms and legs to soar. I'm flying on the wings of the Holy Spirit.
Pastor Todd and I both have a heart for people saying, "I want to quit doing it my way," in your own heart. I know you've only done this at your church a handful of times, but Todd and I truly believe those handful of times are going to add another one where I'm going to ask you that if today, you are not walking with God…
I'm not talking about you're reading your Word, and you're coming to the church now. I'm talking about you are not living the way God wants you to live. You've maybe known it in the past, but you've walked away, and you don't have an active relationship with God, and today you want to say, "I'm done. I quitting right now doing it my way. I want to to do it God's way. I can't do this on my own. I'm tired, and I'm exhausted."
Or if you have never said, "Jesus, come into my life. I need you. I need you now." You think I had a need for God? You're more disabled than I am if you're addicted to pornography. If you can't forgive someone who's hurt you, you're more disabled than I am. I'm not saying forgiveness is easy. Sometimes it'll take a whole lifetime to have that thorn in your side and to know that Jesus has forgiven me and God is going to give me grace just to get through today, but at least not to hate somebody.
Do you see the word disabled? Picture it. When you go and sin no more, you put a G-O in front of disabled and it spells, "God is abled." We're all disabled, but when you go and trust in God, he will transform you from the inside out. Today, if you want to say, "You know what, God? I want you in my life. I want to quit doing it my way," in a second, I'm going to get you to stand where you are, and I want you to come to the front. I've assured Pastor Todd that I'm not going to lay hands on you. It's all good.
Today, right now, if you know that you need Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, and you are playing church, and you don't want to play it anymore… You want to know more about God. You want to have an active relationship that every day you're praying for today, you're thanking God for today, and you're trusting in God for today. You want that joy. You want that hunger for him, and you want to be that tree. Wherever God has let you be, today, he can uproot you and put you where exactly he wants you to be.
What is that? The living waters of peace and joy and faith. Today, if you know you need Jesus Christ in your life, and you want to say, "Nick, I want to change my life," right now, stand where you are and come to the front. Don't come up if you're already in a relationship with God. Right now, if you know that you need to give your life to Jesus Christ today, you need to get real in your relationship with him either for the first time or you need to come back to him, right now stand to your feet in the name of Jesus and come forward, and let's say a prayer together.
Right now. Come on. Let's give a big round of applause. There are going to be people coming up. There's one. From the top to the front, from my right to my left, come on. Face me. Lift your voices. There are people coming to Jesus Christ today. Come on. Just come. There are many more of you. Why are you sitting there? Grab the hand of your wife and say, "I want to come. I want to come. I want to come. I'm done with my life. I want Jesus. I want Jesus. I want Jesus. I want Jesus!"
There are so many more of you. Just come. Say a prayer with me. Start that relationship with God. Face me. You don't need to applaud anymore, but right now, come on. If you know God is calling you to a relationship with him and you feel like your feet have never been heavy like this before, I want you to know, in the name of Jesus that fear be broken right now. Just come. Your burden is heavy, but Jesus will carry you through. Are you done yet? Are you finished yet trying to clean a house with filthy rags? Do you understand?
Maybe you are too afraid to come up because God isn't going to forgive you of your sin, and you have shame and guilt. There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. Do you understand? You're in a cage, and today you can be free. You can be free of depression and fear and anxiety. The Holy Spirit can come on you when you ask him into your life. Come on.
I'm going to wait for the people up top. "Oh Nick, it's going to take me ages." Come on. In the name of Jesus, last call right now. In the name of Jesus, tell your friend, "Would you come with me?" Come, Mom, come, Dad, come with me right now. You're never too young, it's never too late, to give your life to Jesus Christ. Would you come forward right now? Last call.
One. Don't applaud yet. Watch this. One, two, come on. That's two more people. Three, at the top. I'm going to wait for you. Hurry up and come down in the name of Jesus Christ. Four, five. That's five more. Six. Keep coming, hurry up. I don't have a wristwatch. Seven, eight, nine at the top. Hurry up and run down.
Today Jesus is here. Today, if you want to reach him, he's only a prayer away. Just say that prayer. Say it from your heart. and he will answer you. Faith is not a feeling. Faith is believing because he says so. Today, your name is going to be written in the Book of Life. Hallelujah. Let's bow our heads and pray. I'm going to pray for you.
Father, we thank you, Lord, for everybody here. We thank your Holy Spirit for your presence. We thank you, Lord, for your truth that has set us free. We ask in the mighty name of Jesus that today we would be free, free, free. Lord God, we thank you that you haven't called us to be perfect. But you've called us to trust in you, Lord God, to believe you're going to live in us, and you're going to transform us one day at a time, to grow, to learn, and to seek your face and your will, that plan that is to prosper us and not to harm us.
Father, we do pray for miracles in the mighty name of Jesus here today. Father, we thank you that the greatest miracle of all is knowing you. Father, may you bless these people at the front who've given their heart to you and the people in the seats who also will be doing it as well. Thank you, God.
I think that person is here, and I want you all, if you don't mind, in your heart or out loud, to repeat this prayer. Say, "Lord Jesus, I come to you today, and I thank you for loving me so much that you died on the cross for all of my sin. I am so sorry for what I've done wrong. Please forgive me. Help me to forgive myself and to live a life that you want me to live. Give me strength, heal my heart, and set me free. Give me comfort and joy to know that you're with me. I want to know you more today. Teach me to pray. Teach me to thank you. Teach me to trust you. Bless my family. Bless my friends. Help me to be your love. In Jesus name, I pray."
Nick: One more thing exciting thing. Jesus is your strength, the Son of God, who's forgiving of your sins. John 3:16 says, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish, but have everlasting life." You now have started that journey in him.
One more thing I want to do before we move on. There are people here in your seats who've said that prayer, who've done exactly what these people have done at the front, but for whatever reason, you didn't come forward. If you don't come forward and if you don't speak with someone, we want to quickly pray with and give you help.
I'll tell you why you need help. You're going to wake up in the morning after saying, "I really felt something that day, and I really wanted God," and think, "What now?" That whole question is why this church is here. So right now, if you want to say, "I did exactly what these people did up the front, but I just didn't come forward," I urge you stand right now where you are, friend, and come forward.
Bring your friend, if that's you. Come forward. Right now, you're going to see them coming. From the front to the back, from your right to your left, come on. Come forward right now. There are more people here. I know you've said that prayer. Come forward, don't wait. If you know your husband said it, tell him, "I'll come with you." If it's the other way around, "I'll go with you." Come on if you know that you said that prayer.
You ready gentlemen? Here it is. You're the leader of the household. If you just made your heart right with God, and you can say, "You know what? I did this for us and for our family. I know I wasn't walking the way God wants me to do it. I don't want want to do it my way anymore." Stand in the name in Jesus now and come. Come on.
Start applauding. There are people coming. Come on. At the top, I'm going to wait for you. There you go. Come on. Come down. Don't be afraid, just come. Tell your girlfriend; tell your guy. Come on. Just come. Hallelujah. Awesome.
Todd: Well as Nick said, we don't do that often, but when we do it, we want you to know it's not you that came that made you right with God, is it? It's a faith decision. By faith, we've been justified through Jesus Christ to have peace with God. If you are one of these friends who are here, and there are still some of you that pride in the flesh kept you from moving forward even though you made a decision, the Scripture says, "If you don't profess me before men, then I'm not going to profess you before my Father who's in heaven."
That's our privilege, by the way, every week. Not just a one-time walk up front, but every day, the way that we live as we go into this community that we profess Christ. We're happy to tell them why we celebrate Christmas. It's the birth of our Savior. It transforms us from the inside out.
Father, I thank you for my friend, Nick. I thank you for the way you have reminded us today that you are good. Not because you give arms and legs, but because you have given us grace. No, you're not even good because you've given us grace. You are good because grace is who you are. You are good because love is who you are, because justice is who you are, and you have revealed that through Jesus Christ. We see your goodness in Christ. You are not good because you save us. You save us because you're good. We thank you for that.
We pray that this body, all the folks... What an incredible stewardship. You have built a church, apparently, of 2,000 people who already know you and who are here this morning with thousands more coming. With this being your temple, we ought to really transform this city with our faithfulness.
Rebuke those who've not memorized Scripture like Nick. Rebuke those who are not part of a fellowship and accountability like Nick is. Rebuke all of us, Father, who aren't passionate about the gospel the way Nick was this morning, so we can be your church, your people, a holy priesthood, a people for your own possession who declare your marvelous truths and light.
We thank you for the courageous children of God who came forward this morning, and I pray now that courageous children of God would go into the world, that we would know that we are made perfectly by you for a wonderful purpose. May we not miss out on that.
For hearts that are still cold this morning, people who have not yet responded, I pray they would meet us in that room, that they would come. It's not too late to come. If the Enemy worked them over and made them to prideful to move in a room of two 2,000, let them move now as we sing and join us. Glorify yourself, Christ, continually in this moment and forever. Amen.
We're going to sing one last song. We're all going to stand and do it. If you've made a profession to follow Christ today, would you come in that room? If you've made a profession to live for Christ before, I pray you go and have a week of worship.
Whenever we have a guest like this who comes, everybody always asks, "How can I have this?" First of all, you guys know everything we do here is streamed free on the web. If you'd like other stuff, because Nick has put that thing together carefully, we always make it available the day that person is here. That's happened.
I want to tell you what we make available all the time: a community of saints who will spur you on to love and good deeds. You are going to mess up your forever if you don't know God loves you and has a wonderful purpose for your life. God bless you!
"This series will cover twelve truths that if you don?t get exactly right, the ramifications and the impact on your life will be enormous. They matter today and eternally. If you want to call yourself an orthodox follower of Christ, these are truths that you cannot miss. These are twelve central, non-negotiable principles of theology and we will discuss what it means to embrace them, the alternatives to them, as well as the application of them. In other words, what it should look like when devoted, orthodox followers of Christ live them out." Todd Wagner