Proximity

You can accomplish anything when you put your trust in God.

Douglas Poole
Oct 21, 2018    
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This sermon is about the well covered bible story of Jesus feeding five thousand people with five loaves of bread and two fish. This time it is told with the idea that the small, nameless, boy understood that if you get in the proximity of Jesus, and trust in God, anything is possible. Video recorded at Clearwater, Florida.

Transcription
messageRegarding Grammar:

This is a transcription of the sermon. People speak differently than they write, and there are common colloquialisms in this transcript that sound good when spoken, and look like bad grammar when written.

Douglas Poole: 00:00 Hey, good morning, you all a welcome. So glad you're here in this space. I got kind of excited too, after that song, and I got to thinking I had already taught and I was ready to go home. I want to offer just a personal word of thanks from Jackie and I to the whole Cypress tribe. For the last two weeks we spent 10 days with our four month old granddaughter in the hospital, and so over in Tampa at St Joe's, and so we were trying the best we could to lead a normal life and delegate or responsibilities here. Jackie had her school, and me here and sometimes working out of the hospital room, you know, with the computer out ,and doing all that, and praying like crazy. And she's been released, and she's home, and quarantined for a couple of weeks, but she's home.

Douglas Poole: 00:57 And you know, some of you had been on that journey, that you didn't volunteer to be a part of. You got drafted into it and. You're not really certain how the story ends, but you're along on this journey whether you want to be or not. And you understand in those moments as Jackie and I did again, it was underscored for us, you know, how desperately we need God in our lives. We need his grace and his presence, his strength, his hope, his provision, and we also discovered how desperately we need you all. And so many of you, who were aware, were sending notes to us in social media, encouragement, prayer support. People kept asking, you know, what can we do, what can we do? And, if you're still wondering, what you can do, my car needs vacuumed and washed. But my point is just this, we discovered how important it is, you know, to be in this vital relationship with God, and the vital relationship with each other. That we need both in our lives, don't we? And so we're grateful to have you guys in our lives, and we thank you. So that said, I want to pray. And then we're going to launch into a new series here today. So let's pray.

Douglas Poole: 02:26 Father, I want to pause, and you know just understand that this journey that I spoke of, you know, it doesn't always end as is it as it did this last week for us. And most likely there are some people on this very journey right now. Some journey they didn't volunteer to be a part of it, but they've been drafted, and they're on the journey. There is that uncertainty that they are walking into, and in these moments. Lord, we need you, and we need your grace. So would your grace be so strong, and so present, and so powerful in our lives. Meet us in this service. And father, I pray that we would walk out of here having met you with with more courage than we had coming in, with more hope than we had coming in, with more joy than we had coming in, because we met you and we experienced your grace through each other. And father, I think that would make this a beautiful gathering, so may it be so. And everybody agreed and said, Amen.

Douglas Poole: 03:34 All right, I'm reading an article called The Greatest of the Greats, and the title alone kind of captured my attention. So I wanted to read about the greatest of the greats. And the article had to do with, it said, there was a distinction between the people who are merely great. If you can call anybody merely great, right? But between those who are merely great, and the greatest of greats in the sports field. And the author of the premise of it was this, that the greatest of the greats, not only is their performance at a higher level than everybody else, but through their leadership and their presence, they also elevate the game with the rest of the people on their team. That is, people are better for playing with the greatest of the greats, and then it gave an example of this. It said Lebron James is one of the greatest of the greats, and because he elevates and play of others around him. In fact it referred to Lebron James as basketball Jesus. That's pretty audacious, right? Basketball Jesus. But they said they called him basketball Jesus, because he's managed to resurrect the careers of some has-beens. That is, he raised the level of play of the guys that he brought in with him, and they became better. The article, when I mention some other names you probably know like Michael Jordan, Peyton Manning, a David Beckham, you know, sport's greatest of the greats, who raised the level of play around them. So I read the article, I put it down, I started thinking about some of the people in my life whose influence for me is they elevated my game. That because of my association with them, it elevated who I was as a husband, and as a father, as a leader, and as a pastor, just who I was as a person. And I thought man, you know, I owe at least a note of gratitude to somebody. I feel I've got to sit down and write a note, a thank you to some of these folks who made me a better person for being with them.

Douglas Poole: 05:33 And then in my thinking, I moved from some of these people I was thinking of, to thinking about the way Jesus did this for people. That Jesus was one of the greatest of the greats, because people who got associated with Jesus, it elevated their game. And so when you read the stories about the moments in Jesus' life as they're recorded in scripture, you've discovered there were people who aspired in their being to be a better person, but like they never got there because like there was some self defeating behavior. It's like, oh, you know, here I go again, I can't believe I did that, and then we keep tripping up. But then when they got associated with Jesus, and with his grace, and his power, and his presence, it elevated their game, and they became like the best version of themselves consistently.

Douglas Poole: 06:20 And you read story after story like that in the scripture, or you read accounts of people who had these dreams and aspirations, or things they wanted to do in this world, but never could quite pull them off. Then they got associated with Jesus, and somehow Jesus like elevated their game, and they were able to accomplish things far greater than they've ever been able to do on their own. Jesus elevated the game of everybody who was around him, who walked with Jesus. So starting today and running through at least Thanksgiving, maybe Christmas, I don't know when this is gonna end but it'll end by Christmas. We're going to do this series together. And what we're going to talk about is how when you walk with Jesus, he has this way with his transforming grace, of elevating our game, the person that we are becoming and and what we're doing in this world.

Douglas Poole: 07:17 And if you are like me, man, I want to live a full life, and there's this person I want to be on a consistent basis. Not like when I happened to have a good day, but on a consistent basis. And I just know because I've lived long enough, somebody's going to have to help me elevate my game, if I'm going to consistently be the best version of me, and I believe that is Jesus. And there are some things that I'm longing to do in this world to make a difference, and have an impact and have some influence, that sure are beyond me, and I need somebody who can elevate my game and that person I believe is Jesus. And when you walk with him, he elevates your game, and I think it's true about you too. There's this person you long to be, there's this life you long live, and there's been this frustrating thing. Is what's keeping me from that?

Douglas Poole: 08:12 We're going to talk about how Jesus elevates our games to do this, and we're going to call the series Three Miles an Hour. And the reason we're calling it Three Miles an Hour is because the average human being walks at three miles an hour. Oh, I'm so glad I'm with the gifted service, the 9:15. I had to give them hints. All right, I hope they're not watching on facebook, but three miles an hour, because we're going to talk about walking with Jesus and the impact that it has on our lives. [inaudible].

Douglas Poole: 08:51 So today we're going to look at a kid, a boy, who made this a courageous decision to walk with Jesus. And it's so elevated this kid's game, it's like he actually outperformed all the adults who were around, because he chose to have this walk with Jesus in this moment. And what's interesting as well, we don't know the name of this boy, but 2000 years later most everybody knows the story. Isn't that interesting? Just an anonymous kid, but 2000 years later, people are still talking about him. And his story is found in the Gospel of John Chapter six. So if you want to turn there, you can. We will put the scripture up on the screens. And if you were one of these people that went to Sunday school as a kid, or maybe as an adult, you've been to church quite a lot in your adult years. You've heard this story, and you're familiar with it. And what sort of concerns me is that when there are stories we are familiar with, our brain does this weird thing. As soon as we start to hear the story it's like got it, okay, move on. What's next? I've been there, done that, and our brain says, okay, you got it. And so I'm going to ask you to kind of see this with some fresh eyes. I'm going to walk you into the room of the story, hopefully through a different door, but you're going to end up in the same room. But we'll walk through a different door to learn about this story, and so please hear it with new ears. All right?

Douglas Poole: 10:20 John chapter six, beginning with verse number one, "Sometime after this, Jesus crossed to the far shore of the Sea of Galilee (that is, the Sea of Tiberias), and a great crowd of people followed him because they saw the miraculous signs he had performed on the sick. Then Jesus went up on a mountainside and sat down with his disciples. The Jewish Passover feast was near. When Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward him, he said to Philip, where shall we buy bread for these people to eat? Now, he asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do. Philip answered him eight months wages would not buy enough bread for each one to have a bite. Another of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter's brother spoke up. Well here's a boy with five small barley loaves and two small fish, but how far will they go among so many? And Jesus said, have the people sit down. There was plenty of grass in that place and the men sat down (about 5,000 of them). Biblical scholars say with this account that somebody counted noses of the men, but most likely it wasn't just men. That it was families who are present. And so these men were married and had children, so it easily could be 20,000 people. Now I'm kinda thinking if you're going to feed five with five loaves and two fish, whether it's 5,000, 20,000, you're like, you know, okay. It's still a pretty impactful story.

Douglas Poole: 11:56 We continue, have the people sit down. Verse 11, "Then Jesus took the loaves, gave thanks and distributed to those who were seated as much as they wanted. He did the same with the fish. And when they had all had enough to eat, he said, to the disciples gather the pieces that are leftover, let nothing be wasted. So they gathered them, and filled 12 baskets, with the pieces of the five barley loaves left over by those who had eaten." Alright, I just find this to be a beautiful, beautiful story. And there are so many layers here that give us insight into the person, the wonderful person of who Jesus is, and what happens when you choose to walk with him. This narrative records so many encounters, right? Jesus is interacting with the disciples, Jesus interacting with the sick, Jesus, interacting with the crowds, and Jesus interacting with a little boy, a little boy who happened to have a first century happy meal, of five loaves and two fish. He's just a kid, right? He's just an anonymous kid, among maybe 20,000 people. This huge crowd of thousands of people who are hungry, and he happens to have a first century happy meal. Look at this, don't you just feel more joy looking at this? If you could only smell it, you'd be elated, it's a happy meal. So here's this little kid with a first century happy meal, 20,000 hungry people. And the question is, well, what is this among so many? For crying out loud, we don't have 5,000 here in this service. What is this among us? Right?

Douglas Poole: 13:54 There are times I can so identify with this kid, I really can. I look at what's going around in the world these days, and there are some things that are just a rip-roaring mess aren't they? There are things that just like if somebody doesn't go out there and solve this thing, this won't end well. There are some challenges and obstacles, you know that we've got to do something about. And there are times I find myself looking at what's going on in the world around me, and then when I look at my level of talent, I look at my resources, my intellect, my connections, and I look at these problems and I feel like this kid with the happy meal. But what is this that I have, what is my talent amongst such huge problems? What does my resources, what is my connectedness with all these huge challenges that are going wrong [inaudible]. I mean, I feel like a kid standing with a happy meal, looking at these challenges there are. And in mean he's just a kid, standing there, in close proximity to Jesus. I mean, he's not a big shot disciple is he? He's just a kid, and you know. I think if they were making a movie of this, you know this event, with the crowds, and the disciples, and Jesus, I think this kid would have been picked as an extra, don't you? Here we need somebody cute to keep people engaged. We want you to stand here and smile nice. You're going to be like, one of the extras in this, in this story that we're having here today. He's not a major player, it's just a little face in the crowd.

Douglas Poole: 15:39 Ever felt like that? So last year I have a friend who has one of these web TV deals, you know, that every week he's got a show. And I checked it yesterday, and some of his shows, he's got like 10-11,000 people watching. Oh, that's cool. So last year he called me and said, hey, I would like you to be a part of my show this next Friday night. I'm like, you know, what can I do? And I said, what's it on? And he said, oh, it's on photography. I said, you know me, I mean I got an iPhone and the snap some shots with and that's about it. They started laughing. Douglas, he said, I didn't want to ask you to be a guest. He says, I'm a little light on audience, and I need you to come sit in the studio, so when the camera pans out it's full. I knew that. And so I said to the guy, I said, so like, what am I, just another pretty face to you? Nah, but speaking of pretty faces, he said, would you bring Jackie? Such as my life. I think so many of us get that. I think so many of you understand that feeling, don't you? There's this big picture of life that's going on. There's things that are happening here, there, but you're just an extra in the story. You're just like this face in this crowd, and not a vital part of the story that's playing out. But in this story, which is so beautiful, there is an apparent extra. Just a face in the crowd who steps into this moment, and becomes a vital part of the narrative. And it's just a kid, it's a boy. I mean, without this kid, this story plays out differently, doesn't it? And it plays out differently because this kid chooses to walk with Jesus, and when he walks with Jesus, Jesus elevates his game doesn't he? Boy does he elevate this kid's game.

Douglas Poole: 18:09 And I think friends, there's something for us to learn here. Because I think so many times, so many of us feel like an anonymous, nameless, face in the crowd. We watch what's going on. And inside of us, we feel so deeply in us. I want my life to matter. I want to know I've got a reason for getting up tomorrow. I want to do something that's significant. And then we look at what's going around in the world, and we look at our level of talent, our intellect, our ability, our connectedness, and we say it'll probably be somebody else besides me. Maybe him because he's way more smart than me, or that person because they've got a level of talent that's pretty amazing, or this person over here, they've got some connectedness, and some resources that allow them to make a difference, so it's probably going to be them. And so we sit in the crowd, this nameless face in the crowd, but we keep hoping that maybe some person who is a vital part of the story would see us and pick us. And They'll say, and you come on down, be a part of the story, and then something beautiful is going to happen. So we're kind of like, I hope somebody will pick me some day to be a part of something that is beautiful. But when I read the story, and when I check what's going on, we keep thinking if somebody chooses us will have an opportunity. But what I want us to notice in this story is the way opportunity plays out, and the way opportunity plays out is sometimes you got to choose yourself.

Douglas Poole: 19:47 Sometimes you've got to stop waiting for somebody to pick you, and you pick you, and you step into the story. But we keep staying in the crowd, because we just have ourselves convinced that the opportunity is not for me, it's for somebody else. And so we stay in the crowd waiting and waiting, and hoping and waiting, and waiting and hoping. And sometimes friends, we just have to choose ourselves. One of the first things I want us to note in this story is a direct correlation between opportunity and proximity. Look at verse two. It says, a great crowd of people followed Jesus because they saw the signs he had performed on healing the sick. Jesus goes up on a mountain side, it says, and when Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward him, so the power of God is just flowing through Jesus, and the sick are being healed, and at some point Jesus retreats up the mountain side, and the crowd starts to move to him. Let me tell you what, friends, after my last two weeks, four month old granddaughter was sick, if I was in that crowd, I'd be hiking my way of that mountain carrying that baby, I'd stand in line all day if I had to. Jesus will get touch. Brooklyn?

Douglas Poole: 21:17 I understand what the crowd is doing, they saw him healing the sick, and they're going to pick up every sick child, every sick spouse, every sick friend they have, and they're going to hike as high as the top of Mount Everest if you have to, to get to Jesus. That his healing power might flow, and this crowd is just making its way up to Jesus. Because they understand If you want to experience the opportunity of the life Jesus offers you, you've got to be in close proximity to Jesus. They get it. If we want this life he is offering, we have got to put our self in close proximity to the one who is offering this life, to Jesus. And so they make their way toward Jesus, and in this crowd, 20,000 people coming up the mountain side, there's a kid. There's this boy, and there's this kid who decides he's going to put himself in close proximity to opportunity, because he believes opportunity has a name and that name is Jesus. So 20,000 people milling around, and this kid starts [inaudible] his way through the legs of these adults, clutching his happy meal, because he's going to get up front dog-gone-it. What I've been hearing about, what I've been seeing, I want to be near it, I want to experience it. And so he makes his way through this crowd of adults, and maneuvers is way up in to the front. And friends, you know, sometimes what we need in life, what we simply need is proximity.

Douglas Poole: 23:08 I think sometimes we so underestimate the power of just being present in the moment. I mean, it's awfully hard for Lebron James to elevate your game if you don't show up for practice. You got to get near this guy, you got to be under his leadership and his insight. You got to show up in the weight room, so he can challenge you. You got to show up in the locker room so he can talk, and he can inspire you. But if you want him to elevate your game, you got to get in close proximity to the guy. And it's hard for a kid with five loaves and two fish, a first century happy meal, to have his game elevated if he doesn't show up where Jesus is at work.

Douglas Poole: 23:52 You know, I was rereading this yesterday afternoon in preparation for this weekend, and it's like something I hadn't noticed, it sort of jumped out at me. And there's this part of this narrative where Jesus looks up and he sees the crowd, and he turns to Philip and he says these words, where shall we buy bread for these people to eat? And then he adds this almost like it's an editorial explanation. He says he asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do. And I thought, how did he already have in mind what he was going to do. My first time it is like, well duh. He is God, right? So yeah, he knew what he was going to do. But then I saw something more. He already had in mind when he was going to do, because Jesus was standing there, and who was right there front row close proximity? The kid with the happy meal. Jesus like I want to feed these folks, ooh there we go, there's a happy meal. I know how this story's going to go. He knew what he was going to do. He knew what he was going to do, because there was a kid who was determined to get in close proximity to Jesus, and he had a first century happy meal. I think so many of us friends, we miss opportunities not because of our lack of talent, or we miss opportunities not because of a lack of connectedness, we miss opportunities not because of our IQ, but we simply miss opportunities because of proximity. We don't put our self in the place where opportunity is happening. And so this kid was there, and so when this moment comes and Jesus asked where? Where are we going to get enough bread for these people to eat, his astute disciple stand on the mountain side where they can look out over the valley, and they look over the valley and they say, we don't see any Publix's Jesus, no Winn-Dixie's. They don't even have a Super Walmart here. Can you believe that? The don't have Walmart here? Walmart's everywhere. They don't ever have a Walmart here Jesus. And then one, you know one of their bright guys in the back brings up as a calculator app on his phone. He says, oh, and I just figured it out, Jesus, that even if there was a Publix, we don't have enough money. It'd take eight months wages for everybody just to have one single bite of food. You know, we don't know what we're going to do on this Jesus. So then Andrew looks closer, and right there in the front, happy meal boy, five loaves and two fish. Do you suppose there were other kids there that day? There had to be right? I mean, if there's thousands of people, there had to be, they don't even have nurseries. You just brought the kids to church with you, thank God for nurseries. But there's a lot of kids there, kids everywhere, but there's one kid who is in close proximity. One kid who knows opportunity has a name, and the name is Jesus. Why'd this kid getting the story? Proximity. That's why he got in the story. Friends, proximity will change your stories.

Douglas Poole: 27:34 Last weekend we helped to support the Elbert Orthodontic Family Course of Hope Golf Classic. How's that for a catchy title, right? That my wife envisioned, and began a few years ago, and coordinates and leads. It's to raise money to support our partners, the orphanage in Kenya, the school in Haiti, and locally under resourced kids. End of the day, after expenses are paid, they're going to net right at $50,000. Isn't that beautiful? Yeah, that really is beautiful. It's going to buy Molly, she needs, she doesn't have a vehicle to transport her kids. She will now. You're going to direct the money, Jackie, my wife who leads this to get Molly a vehicle. Our school in Haiti that was damaged in this recent earthquake. It's going to repair the walls, and fix that. And it's going to provide money too, for some activities for under resourced children in our own area. Beautiful, $50,000. But my wife is never satisfied. She has a gift of faith, and I've told you this. The gift, if you live with someone who has the gift of faith, sometimes it's such a blessing and sometimes it's just so annoying. It really is, it's a double edge sword with it. So like I'm celebrating $50K honey, and she says, well I was kind of hoping for a million, and she's serious. I'm like, woman, what's wrong with you? And so I got my phone, and I googled it. What's the average, you know, net proceeds from a charity golf course. Do you know what it is? This is from Golf Digest magazine. Three thousand eight hundred dollars. Yeah, and the article said, if you're thinking about doing a charity golf tournament to raise money for your cause, forget about it. Because the average amount is $3,800. So I went to her, you know, $50K, you know I said, read this. I did a drop the mic moment. You know, I made my point with this, and I thought it's so beautiful.

Douglas Poole: 30:09 Can you quickly tell you how this began? Some of you know part of the story, but you don't know all the story. The reason this golf classic began is because a number of years ago, Jackie and I were in a Kenya with Molly at our orphanage there, and we were doing some work with her. And the orphanage was built on some land that Molly was operating under the understanding that it had been donated to her. But apparently the people who had the deed to the land decided wasn't donated, and so they wanted the land and the orphanage. I just happened to be there, talk about proximity, huh? Just happened to be there. My response was sort of like over my dead body, and so you know we're going to have a come to Jesus meeting, and we're going to negotiate, and we did. And we agreed to buy the land at overvalued price, and I needed $25,000. So I walk out of this meeting thinking, I just promised $25,000, I don't have that. I don't know where we're going to get $25,000, but I need $25,000 by tomorrow. And so yeah, whoa. You should've been in my shoes, whoa. And so we're praying and we're praying. And so I take my phone, I walk outside, I call one of our elders and said, I need $25K. And he said, when do you need it? I said, today. He said, okay. He said, I'll wire it. And I said...yeah, that was another whoa..I said, you know, I promise I'll pay it back. I mean, even if Jackie's got to start mowing lawns over summer break, where we're paying that back. So fortunately we came back, and so we're on the airplane. You know, honey, I just personally guaranteed $25,000, just personally guaranteed $25,000, how are we going to do this? And so Jackie said, I'll do a golf tournament, a golf tournament. Awe, that's sweet, thank you honey. I'm mean, she'd never done a golf tournament, she'd never done fundraising, she doesn't even play golf. And it's like, okay honey. So we come home and was able to, within three month’s time, to raise the money and pay it back.

Douglas Poole: 33:01 And Jackie decided I'm still to do a golf tournament. Molly still has needs, Haiti still has needs. And so this woman with no experience, and no connections, but just this crazy idea that God wanted to do a golf tournament. She just said Jesus, I'm going to give you my everything, because I believe you can do anything. Here's my five loaves and two fish. And so the average golf tournament brings in $3,800. Fifty thousand dollars, I can't wait for the day I stand up here and say, we raised a million, raised a million with that.

Douglas Poole: 34:01 Friends, you have to put yourself in the place where Jesus is at work. Because Jesus is going to do something, he is, and if you don't put yourself in proximity where Jesus is doing his work, a story's going to happen and you won't be in it. A story is going to happen, and you're just going to be like this face in the crowd. You'll be the extra, because you didn't step into the moment. You didn't step into proximity of what God is doing, and you're going to be an extra, and you won't be a part of the story. And it won't be because of your lack of talent, and it's not going to be because of your lack of connectedness, and is not going to be because of your lack of resources, it is going to be because of lack of proximity. That's why friends, you know, that's why I tell you, get in church, be at church. God's going to do something, God's going to move, God's going to speak, but you're going to miss it. Why? Lack of proximity. That is why we say serve God in some capacity. Get involved in children's ministry, student ministry, go help feed the homeless under-resourced on Saturdays. Serve, and get in a book club. God's going to do something, God's going to be speaking, something's going to happen and you're going to miss it. And it won't be because of your lack of talent, and won't be because of connectedness, it'll be because of your lack of proximity. He's doing something. You're choosing to stay out of it, and not be in proximity of what he's doing. So show up, and when you show up, participate. Don't just show up, jump in, engage. I mean the kid did, I just love this kid. This kid, wish I knew his name. How about Fish Boy. One my oldest son's best buddies growing up is fish boy. Oh, the names that they gave each other. I love this kid. Jesus, how are we going to feed 5,000 people? The disciples, how, how, we don't know? This kid, here, here, this is how. And the disciples, they looked at the happy meal, and looked at the crowd and they realized, I'm experienced enough to know that that happy meal will not feed this crowd. And this kid looks and says, Oh yeah, but I've experienced enough Jesus to know he does some pretty crazy things. I've been watching him all day, the blind are seeing, the lame are walking, the deaf are hearing, the dumb ate talking. Like yeah, here, he does some pretty crazy things. I've experienced enough Jesus to know if you give him your everything, oh, he can do anything.

Douglas Poole: 36:55 I wonder how many times friends, God has invited you into the wow zone. God put some dream in your heart, some thought in your head, and you said, whoa. And your first thought was, this is so much bigger than me, so this must not be for me. This idea, this thought, this dream, I mean it must be for somebody who more talent than me, that's better connected than me, who's more beautiful than me, who has more resources than me, and so we decide we just need to take a pass on it. God is saying, how are we going to do this? How are we going to do this? And we look around and say, it's impossible. Just like the apostles, the resources aren't there, it can't be done. Instead of being like the boy who says, I've experienced enough Jesus to know the numbers don't add up, but Jesus does some pretty crazy things, he just does. So I'm all in, I'm all in. When friends, when, when, will we understand that yes, what God is wanting to do in this world is bigger than you. Yes, that's a given. It's bigger than you and me put together, that's a given. But if we give him our everything, he can do anything, but the story is not going to be written until we step into the moment, into proximity with Jesus. When God shows you a problem, he is already inviting you to be a part of the solution, that's why he brings it to your mind. How are we going to feed them? And when he puts these thoughts in your minds, and these dreams in your head, that have been there and you think, how can this happen? We don't have the resource, he is already inviting you to be a part of the solution. And so we sit in the crowd, keep waiting. Maybe someday somebody will choose me, maybe someday it'll me. He already has, he's already pointed out that problem, that challenge. Put that dream in your head and said, there it is. Step into the situation, be in in close proximity with what God is doing. So Jesus elevates the game of fish boy and five loaves and two fish, they feed 5,000 people. And I love the nuances with this, as John writes about it, when everybody was fully sated, Jesus handed out take home bags, right? You want to take some with you? We have leftovers. He does more than enough, more than enough. He's a god of abundance. How's that for elevating his game?

Douglas Poole: 39:56 So here's to me, an extraordinary thought of Jesus and this boy. God did the most through the person who had the least, a kid. He did the most through the person with the least. He did the most for the person with the least, because the person with the least was willing to say, I'll give you my everything. And when you give him your everything, he can do anything. How often times friends, we look to the person who has an abundance of money, an abundance of talent, an abundance of beauty, and we think that's the person God's going to use to do great things. Isn't it obvious? Well, oftentimes it's the one with less, through whom God does the most, because they're willing to give it all to him. The moment we look at a problem that seems so huge, and you look at your resources that seem so meager, and you conclude it's not your problem. You're missing the story that God is wanting to write. Instead of walking with Jesus, and letting him elevate your game.

Douglas Poole: 41:03 So let me close by asking you, you know what it is? What's that thought that is coming to your mind? That dream he's put in your heart. And the first thing you say is, how in the world can this ever happen? God must've put this thought in the wrong mind, and the wrong heart, because I don't have. And all he's saying is, I just need somebody in close proximity who's willing to give me their five loaves and two fish because, I can turn it into $50,000.

Douglas Poole: 41:48 I can't wait for that day that I get to get up here after a golf tournament and say, brought home a cool mill yesterday.

Douglas Poole: 41:58 What story? What story is God waiting to write with you? What story? Giving your everything, so you can do anything. Giving your everything, so you can do anything. Friends, this world is the less because the people of God are choosing to sit in the studio, and watch what's going on, on the stage. Because God put a dream in your heart, and your head, and instead of stepping out and saying, yes, I'll give what I have, and it's bigger than me, we're going to go for it. We just sit and wait, and the world is the less, and the pain is getting deeper, and the destruction is getting wider. Because the people of God are waiting, somebody ought to do something, somebody ought to go somewhere. And God has put a dream in your heart and your head, and it's time to walk up to him and say, okay, what is this among so many? I'll just give you my everything, because you can do anything, and allow stories to be written. What is your story, that is waiting to be written? Walk with Jesus, and if you haven't given him your life, that's where it starts. Give him your life, he'll give you his.

Douglas Poole: 43:07 All right, let's stand for closing prayer. All right, if you're ready to give him your everything, hold your imaginary happy meal in front of you. Symbolic of, okay, you put a dream in my heart, a vision, here it is. All right, let's pray. Father in Heaven, there's dreams in hearts, there's visions in heads in this room, there are stories that are waiting to be written. And Lord, those of us holding her hands out, and have often thought, it's not us, it's someone else. We don't know how this happens. But Lord on this day, and in this moment, we choose to give you our five loaves and two fish, it is our everything, and the belief you can do anything. And we're going to move forward, we're going to step into the moment, we're going to live in close proximity to Jesus. And father for those who were standing in this midst who've never given their lives to you, I pray this is the moment, this is right now. That they just silently were praying and said, Jesus, I'm going to give you my life, I'm going to start with that. Give you my life, and I ask that you give your life to me. So father, this day, some beautiful stories are beginning because of your grace. And everybody agreed and said, Amen. God bless you Cypress. See you next weekend.



Recorded in Clearwater, Florida.
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Cypress Meadows
2180 North McMullen Booth Road
Clearwater, Florida 33759
(727) 725-4570