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July 26, 2020 12:01 am
Carter Conlon from the historic Times Square Church in New York City. God all things do work together for good to those who love you and are the called according to your purpose not not my idea of what God's purpose is but one God's purpose for my life. Actually it is welcome to a call to the nation with Carter Conlon we spend our days as believers trying to get out of things. God help me to get out of this and I'll show you how much I love you God deliver me from this and see how much I will serve a friend. Sadly, our focus is about getting out of the very things that God is allowing to form his character and his purposes in our lives. So instead of praying God, get me out. We should pray for what teaching here's Carter with today's message titled all things. Romans chapter 8 and verse 28 under simply going to call it. All things and we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to his purpose.
Now that means all things, everything that God allows into your life and into my life has a purpose, a divine purpose. God puts it there for a reason, because it's conforming us to the image of his son and is leaving us in a pathway that will bring his name to glory to the purpose that he wants to accomplish through your life and through my life now. Quite often we are reluctant to hear the truth of God's word without the all things of God brings into our life. Now you keep in mind the apostle Paul wrote these words as a man who would been shipwrecked stone betrayed the been a day and night in the deeply here. He had been in perils among brethren in perils among false brethren in perils among those who hated him his enemies and beaten with rods imprisoned. When you look at the life of the apostle Paul.
It's very hard for anybody alive today disabled my life as how to dip more difficult trajectory than his, and yet he was able to write after all the things that he had suffered that all things work together for good. In other words, everything that God allowed into my life had a divine purpose whether I understood it, or whether I didn't. He was doing something in me he was bringing me to a specific place. He was teaching me specific truths that I might not be willing to learn without the all things coming into my life. I remember being in the Middle East.
I spoke at a pastors conference in Jordan one time in the room was filled with pastors who suffer for the cause of Jesus Christ. Some of them were sold down the couldn't lift their heads during the worship time I spoke a message along these lines, and I said if God is all-powerful and if God could put it into all suffering, then why doesn't he put an end to our suffering and if he allows suffering into our lives. Is there a possibility that there is a divine purpose to it. I want to tell you. By the time we got to the end of the sessions in Jordan, the same pastors whose heads had been downward dancing in the aisles they were arm in arm, and they were shouting. There were were rejoicing because they suddenly understood that there is a divine purpose to all the things that God allows into our lives here simply requested a commit from around the world, California. I'm a member of the church since I was a boy.
I currently live in Southern California. Please pray I need shoulder for my wife and my two-year-old son Staten Island pray for my living situation.
I've nowhere to go New York and I'm in the midst of heart failure as well. Pray for healing and a place to live from New York again pray for my emotional life. It's a mess and I don't even feel like living again. I need a breakthrough in my mind. I suffer from the fear of people, especially those who are above me bosses or otherwise. I've been that way for years, the US pray for me at my job on hated and treated badly I need this job on praying that I do an excellent job and God helps me to shows love to the people who are being mean to me from Marilyn my parents at one time were committed to doing the will of God now have covert, 19 pray for them. I asked for prayer that God may heal them and have mercy on them. California need a breakthrough from fears I have had abuse and betrayal my life.
It's so hard to trust God and all of the past it in the way from Taiwan.
Pray that the strongholds of unworthiness living in shame and poverty are broken pray for escape and restoration from Kentucky. My husband and I pastor a church and were under heavy spiritual attack. We need wisdom, grace, humility and direction from North Carolina. I was laid off due to covert. 19. Please pray that God will open the door for me to supply for my family, and lastly from Malaysia. My son Julian has stopped believing in God he was a prayer warrior one point my other son married a Muslim.
Please pray that these particles will come home and the list just goes on and on and on and on and you and I have to make a choice and especially those that are are texting or writing in and you're a believer in Christ, we either have to believe that all things are working together for God's good purpose in our lives, or they are not, we can have it both ways. It can be just some things it has to be all things.
The things that we like and the things we don't.
The things we understand and the things we don't understand the things that are sweet in the things that are sour things and we would love to come our way and that the things that we would wish would be gone. All of these things are working together, a divine purpose God has ordained for each one of our lives and I wanted tell you something. This is the particular verse of Scripture I know there's a verse that answers every question is at the very, very foundation of the Christian life. I immediately shouted out Romans 828 because it's been the verse that has kept me all the years of my Christian life through through flood through fire, through trial, through difficulty, through hardship, through blessing, all of the things that God has allowed have been for divine reasons. Sometimes I understand them and sometimes I don't. Until the worst of it, some to is is even over in my life. I remember years ago I came to New York in 1994 we moved into a house in New Jersey. We had no idea that the house and we moved into was infested with toxic mold that I made toxic mold to the point when it was discovered in the year 2001. The mold was so thick that those who inspected the house, condemned it on the spot in the quarantined and nobody was allowed to had to wear hazmat suit to go into the house that I used to live in. They certainly discomforted the whole attic was so filled with black toxic mold that there was no visible wood left in the attic. It was all black from end to end. The house was a construction defect in the house that allowed moisture to build in the attic and the moisture guts, the, the mold the toxic mold got so thick in the house that it was actually growing behind pictures on the wall when it was finally fully discovered it's it's guard my bronchial tubes. That's why I cough a lot.
Still, even today, and first season I could hardly breathe. We were fighting against a terrible onslaught in New York City. I stood with pastor David Wilkerson. I guy gave my all and did my best to give my strength were fighting to have the church go for just this testimony that was in its infancy in New York City and had to really fly through the floods of hell to survive. We were fighting and as I was fighting alongside Pastor David.
I kept getting sicker and sicker and sicker by the day to the point where I could hardly breathe in the headaches were so bad in my energy level was almost at zero.
I could sleep for eight hours, get up in the morning and feel like I've not slept at all. I could barely stay awake and I could hardly breathe in a member. One just before it was discovered this what was coming down my face in between services New York City and Pastor David Lucas and said to me what's wrong with your card and I said I I don't know I just can't breathe a Cambria can't seem to get a breath, no matter how hard I try and we went away that summer and that's when the inspectors were sent into our house and discovered the toxic mold so thick that they told me it was the worst case of toxic mold that they had ever seen in any particular houses that ever examined the doctors landing in Albany, who is the foremost expert on toxic mold poisoning in Albany at the time told me said you were just weeks away from death. At this not been discovered. One day I was walking down the street in New York City on on eighth Avenue and I was to the point where I could just see these black slacks coming in from my eyes because I was always on the verge of passing out and suddenly in frustration. I just said out loud on the street.
A pseudo-God is this really necessary my life and I really meant it. Is this really necessary is if the battle wasn't hard enough as it was and I was walking the righteous walk and I was fighting a righteous fight and I was standing for truth and standing with the men of God that the Lord had sent me to help and as I was standing August 30 I was getting sicker by the day and by the week so I just finally exasperation as it is this really necessary. I was so surprised to hear the voice of God when he said to me, it is Carter. It is very necessary in your life and suddenly out of out of nowhere, these verses from Psalm 119 came into my mind. Let me read them to you. I'd never ever considered them before and verse 67. The psalmist is before I was afflicted, I want to stray but now I have kept your word for 71. He said it is good for me that I have been afflicted that I may learn your statutes. Another was that this affliction.
My life is going to take me deeper into a place of trusting you because I have no choice. I have to learn to trust you and for 75 says I look, I know Lord that your judgments are right in and faithfulness. You have afflicted me now, who preaches that today where if you ever heard that the faithfulness of God can actually allow an affliction into your life. It's in my Bible Psalm 119 verse 75. Read it for yourself for a divine purpose that we may not fully understand. God said in my faithfulness. I have allowed this to come into your life.
It could've kept us from moving into that house could've moved us out five years earlier, but here's what he said to me on eighth Avenue that night is a Carter you are you have a very strong will, which is true I am strong-willed and he said one day you're going to need to learn to lean on me because if you lead times were church by your own ingenuity you will bring into a place of weakness. I'm going to teach you how to be dependent on me is the folks I needed Christ every moment of every hour of every day because my own strength was gone and he began to teach me how to hear his voice. I couldn't accept an invitation to go anywhere and speak that I wanted to because if I if I walked out and I went and preach, the more it wasn't the Holy Spirit leading me when I would come back to could take me a week or two to even recover physically, but when the spirit was leading me when I would come back. I would come back stronger than when I went out to see in this affliction, the God allowed into my life. He taught me how to hear his voice and he taught me that if is not leading. I ought not to follow.
I don't not to be governed by good ideas. I was learning to be governed by the voice of God. And at this time I had no idea that I would be the next senior pastor of Times Square church for that season, the God allowed in my life. I didn't know wasn't even in my thinking in my thinking.
I was only there to help this man of God for as long as he needed me. I didn't know the God had another plan and I didn't know that in faithfulness, it afflicted me to be able to work that plan out in my life is to know when you get when you and I get to this understanding it brings our theology to a whole new place brings understanding of God to a whole new place.
It brings us to a place of saying God all things do work together for good to those who love you and are the called according to your purpose.
Not not my idea of what God's purpose is but one God's purpose for my life. Actually is, and quite often we are so stubborn that he can't teach his book through affliction he has to bring something into our lives so that we might before I was afflicted, I want to stray but now I have learned your statutes. How could Paul the apostle write the words I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. How could he write these words, if he not been brought to a place through his own suffering of understanding that only Christ can keep it in certain places. Remember, one of the Scriptures. He said I don't want you to be ignorant, brethren of the trouble he came to us in Asia, that we were pressed beyond measure. In the point where we despaired of even living is is I don't want you to be ignorant of the trouble that came our way. But God helped us in Paul goes on is is God has helped us God does help us in Christ Jesus will help us in the future. He wouldn't have that revelation in his life had he not been given of God.
This incredible grace of meeting incredible grace to go forward another day.
I remember now were back to the verse all things work together for good, all things I remember the day when I had to go into my apartment I lived in on 51st first season in New York City at a part of the worst of this affliction.
I had an oxygen tank on wheels that I had to pull around the apartment with me with a long tube that came from it in a mask that I had put over my face so I'd buy had amassed long before covert, 19 came round and in the morning I had to wear this mask in brief for 15 minutes.
I remember the instructions pure oxygen for 15 minutes to clear out the fund was in my testing to get rid of the massive headaches that I would wake up with every morning.
I had to do this before I could even read my Bible and I would be a liar if I stood and told you that there was no despair that came into my life.
I want to tell you, there were mornings that the despair just wanted to eat at my heart that the wondering old God. Are you ever going to heal my life and could any good ever come from this and so mornings there was so down I would I would take my pen and I just started writing poems.
What I thought were poems and I will I would I would hear in the distant little tune.
Sometimes it came with some of these poems that I was right believes these were just things from my heart. I made a choice to declare God to be faithful in the midst of my affliction and I started writing down these little poems that eventually became songs and David Wilkerson insisted they be put on a CD and even hired an orchestra brought an orchestra into studio to do background music for a city that was called quiet times. Most of the songs on the CD were written in this time of affliction. This particular CD that I wrote as poems in the worst of the headaches and the breathing situation, the affliction, the trial sold over 40,000 copies in its first run and raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for missions all around the world all things work together for good to those who are who love God and of the called according to his purpose. They work together when we choose to believe that God has allowed them for a divine reason and we choose to declare him to be faithful no matter what our circumstance is or how difficult it has become one particular morning I sat down and I wrote a song of poem actually and it became a song. It was called if you've lost your heaven song and here's the first verse of the course.
If you lost your heaven song. It's so hard to carry on when tomorrow looks at sadness yesterday. Just remember, Jesus came and he keeps singing just the same. If you will listen when you go to him and pray here's the course when Jesus came to live in nearly carried heaven's sweetest tune with words. I love you and forever I would stay when days are cold and darkness strong things might seem lost, but not for long. His song within you cannot ever pass away his song within you cannot ever pass away. I got the most beautiful letter. Couple years later after the city was initially produced. This lady was a pastor's wife one day her husband came home and he said to his wife honey says that our marriage is not working. I want out of this marriage. I want to live a new life. I want to go off and do my own thing and as far as I'm concerned, our marriage is over its finished. It's done. She was so devastated and so hit her on the left field that she decided to commit suicide. She rented a hotel room not too far away from her house and she went to the pharmacy. She got the prescription pills he needed to commit suicide. She got in the car intending to drive there and to take her life.
On the way there. Her husband had gotten a copy of this CD quiet times and it was in the CD player and the song I talked to about you lost your heaven song was playing when she turned the car on she started listening to this song. She wrote to be insisted for three days for three days. I drove all it did every dad should stay in the hotel I'm assuming at night, but in the daytime surges driver announces that I put this here CD on repeat and I listen to the same song over and over and over and over again and she said it brought me back to the faith of my my childhood when I first received Christ knows orderly years when I walked with God and how faithful God has been to me and how God won't forsake me in my affliction is that after three days of driving around knowing that my marriage is finished. I just decided to go home and not take my life is that I drove back home got in the driveway get on the car came in the house.
There's my husband sick and heartsick in his spirit is central honey is I'm so sorry. I don't know what came over me. You don't know what I was thinking I made such a mistake in a been such a fool and I love you and I believe that God is going toward gutter marriage deceit to keep a woman from committing suicide. A pastor's wife got had to allow affliction in another man's life in the city far far away and sitting in his office with an oxygen mask on his face and put a pen in his hand and let them write the words to a song and even the tune to a song that would save a lady from committing suicide and restore a marriage of a couple and ministry that the devil was going to try to destroy you try to tell me that all things to work together for good to those who love God and are the called according to his purpose. I know they do.
I know they do and I can tell you over the years, the countless letters of gotten from people are shut in or sick or lonely or depressed. Put this on and it is given them comfort. It brought my father to Christ.
When he got cancer he would sit in the basement only found out after he died, my mom said your dad would sit and even though he was mocking me for a season for my faith in Christ said he would sit downstairs all night because the pain was so deep and he would listen to your CD all night, night after night after night after night after night he would just listen to the words of the songs in one day I went for a visit and was able to lead him to Christ all things work together for good to those who love God and of the called according to his purpose. And so I know I'm speaking to people are suffering tonight. I know I'm speaking the people of God sickness in your life you get depression in your mind, and got difficult situations. You don't know how you can feed your kids you know now you can pay your rent and don't know how you ever going to be saying again. I wanted tell you, God will be faithful to you because all things work together for good.
If you love God and of the called according to his purpose.
If you choose to declare them faithful you will come out the other side of this valley. This valley of the shadow of death will only last for a season, you will come out the other side and you will be able to say is I can say tonight. Surely goodness and mercy follow me all the days of my life and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. Praise be to God. Praise be to God no matter what's in your life.
God will use it for good.
And part of the victory is finally coming to the realization Lord you put me on this job for a reason you put me in this marriage for a reason you gave me these children for a reason. I live in this apartment for a reason and if I have an affliction in my physical body God. There has to be a reason for that. Maybe I don't yet fully understand how else with that order that Internet nurse. The doctor that medical person may be somebody else is waiting outside the doctors room in the hallway with you. How else would they ever know of the Savior the died for them. If I wasn't there to tell the OS there is a purpose, and Paul learned to believe this is a matter fact he got to the point where he was able to write in this epistles when I'm weak, then I am strong. It was able to believe that even though he was confined to a jail cell at the end of his life was soldiers guarding them on every side than all he had in his hand was a quill and some parchment is able to believe it. All things work together for good.
Even if all I can do is write some letters to some of my friends. Somehow somehow God is working on something bigger than I can understand through my life. He didn't know he was writing to hundreds of millions of people over thousands of years. He didn't know that his letters to his friends were going to be the doctrinal basis for much of our practice of faith in Christ. He had no idea what he was writing and God never shown to all the new was that all things work together for good to those who love God and are the called according to his purpose. So my friend don't just pray to get out of where you are right now prayed to learn the lesson that needs to be learned where you are. Pray that when you do come out the other side of the valley of the shadow of death, you will be able to salve learned I've learned in whatever state I am, therewith to be content. I've learned that I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. I've learned that nothing can separate me from the love of God which is mind in Christ Jesus. I've learned, I've learned that God has a purpose beyond my understanding. God can do things that is so much bigger than what I can if I will just let them be God in me and through me. I've learned all yes I've learned so take it all. Just as the kids often tell us of his life hands you lemons, squeeze it and open the lemonade stand does do something with what God's given you trust him that somehow some goods going to come out of it. I think of all the people were given a meal I think of all the drug addicts and were given an opportunity to be set free. I think of all the missionaries that were held. This really raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for missions. It was already through the Panama man who was so sick they had to breathe in oxygen tank every morning for he could read his Bible and you and I would look and say what good could come from this oh so much more than we can ever think we can ever imagine the father people saw you on the cross for Jesus and there had to be many are said or what good could come from this. It's all over. What we thought was going to bring his victory is now ending in defeat the devil look to be defeat was the greatest victory in the history of this world. Lord, thank you God for people out there who might think they're in defeat with her not your hand is on for great good and I thank you for the Lord with all my heart. In Jesus name the message today has been brought to you by Carter Conlon from Times Square church. For more information log onto TSC.NYC TSC.NYC plan to be with us next week for a call to the nation with Carter,