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February 5, 2021 7:00 am
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And so don't bother coming, save, and then giving God your expectations for the rest of your life will take you where he's designed to go have you do things you never thought of going take you places you never dreamed of. You don't have to know where you're going as long as you know, God is going with you following God into the unknown. On today's destined for victory with pastor Paul Sheppard hello and thanks for stopping by what one of the best-known characters in the Old Testament is Abraham a man who follow God into the unknown and who was willing to sacrifice his own son at God's command to hear more about Abraham on today's broadcast but you also learn a little bit about her friend and teacher Pastor Paul to follow God into the unknown.
You share part of his story just a few comments stay right here or listen to the podcast on demand. Pastor Paul.net that's Pastor Paul.net there is Pastor Paul. Today's destined for victory message developing a lifestyle of faith. Now the third point I ended the message on and I want to pick it up right there is from the life of Noah and what it teaches us is that living by faith means following God into the unknown. That's what I want to pick it up. The Lord told him to build an ark, though, don't go to the boat at one the boat. When you look at what God told him the bill that was not a boat it all it was a huge arc of safety, really, so that he and his family and the animal kingdom.
Representatives from each element of the animal kingdom could be sustained as God began again and so was being asked to do something that he has no familiarity with. He was called to follow God into the unknown.
Just what you as you walk with Jesus, you're going to find times when you're called to do things that you have no frame of reference for and I need to get you ready for that because some of you will have to get delivered from your need to control and understand everything. Some of you are control freaks. Be honest, some of you. You want to understand that you want to know what you want to be in control of it and so you say Lord help me as I walk by faith to be okay with the fact that you and you alone know what's ahead of me because I have no idea I'm going into the unknown going into things I've never even thought about things I've never even contemplated. God is going to lead you into the unknown. That's scary business for some of us, but it's also exciting. How never forget when I first came to California 1989 life and our family moved here with the vision the Lord had given me of reaching thousands of unchurched people thousands of unchurched people.
God said to me back in those days, using the story of Paul in the city of Corinth. God said to me. I have many people in the Bay Area and I'm calling you to help reap that harvest and delete many people to Christ, so I know we will be a soul winning church that I came to pastor what was then 34 people and all those 34 people were an existing church we change the name of it and we set out brand-new direction and they said pastor you just follow the Lord will follow you all 34 with a vision of reaching thousands.
So that's what God had spoken to me thousands of government, and I figured when I got to town thousands will show up. I said okay go to California and announce get on the radio some and tell California I'm here. Come to me all of you who are weary and heavy laden, and I got I did. I got a little station and got a radio broadcast going and I told the Bay Area in Northern California. I was here and they didn't care church group painfully slowly. But here's why bring it up into going into the unknown. Not only had not grown a church from 34 to thousands before I assumed when I got here that the people God was sending me to reach were all black because all I had ever seen is that black people pastor black churches and white people pastor white churches and Hispanic people pastor that's all I've ever seen.
I left the church about thousand I was the associate pastor of a church of a thousand people in Philadelphia, 999 of them were black.
I promise you I'm telling you the truth, 999, but we had one white lady in the church in Philadelphia at about thousand members. One white lady, and we never did know why she was comfortable enough to be there, but she was just made of some right at home. We made an honorary black person think about going know we did underplay and so is only from the reference I had so not only had I never grown a church I was associate pastor, but it never been the senior pastor suddenly God saying to reach thousands of people.
But when I started branching out and we started trying invite unsay relatives and friends and coworkers, and what have you. The church grew slowly people stayed away in droves and in seven years of my best preaching and best leading we went from 34 to 250 that's good growth by regular church standards. The average church in America has less than 100 attendees, so we were more than twice the average by those standards. We were successful by my standard. This was an awful failure because I came with the word from the Lord that would reach thousands and*and why won't they come and we are rented a theater.
I was looking for theater in the look of them think I'm going reach black folk, so I was looking for theater in the hood or school something the rent all the doors were shut, schools were not available to us. There was no theater in the town where we were launching from and it was just nothing. All the doors were closed the door that opened was across the freeway not in East Palo Alto where I thought we would branch out from but in Palo Alto, which is predominantly Anglo and other cultures other than African-American, and I said why is that door open and all the rest of the clothes.
This makes no sense… Had a really messed up playing why you sent me here to reach people and then you will put me where they are not because I'm thinking I can't reach anybody black folk. That's all I ever saw the weeds in the Metal Film Rd. in Palo Alto theater every week, and black folk in seven years of our best preaching and best trying to produce church we went from 34 to 250.
By the time we got to 250 church was 20% black, about 4050 people who didn't look like us when they started coming. I was really confused because I thought what makes a like I got plenty churches. They can choose from but the Lord was doing something unknown to me why he had me over there didn't and so by 250. We were ready to build out our first warehouse. We found a warehouse that we can release inexpensively and we converted that into a worship center.
The whole project was $600,000 to 14,000 ft.² warehouse and so we have room to do much but we could do a 300 seat sanctuary that we had little fellowship hall behind the sanctuary. But the whole wall there just the door leading into the Fellowship Hall had a few offices and I pretty much it. 14,000 ft.² so we built that out $600,000. We raised up 500,000. And God touched the hearts of people in up Presbyterian Church across the tracks they were looking for ministry to be a blessing to and they ended up making us the blessed ministry gave us 100,000. And so we were able to build that thing out so that we were and we about to go from Palo Alto over the East Menlo Park crossing the freeway into a new world, not the world. I thought I was going be made in the first place. Now seven years later we going back we going back with 40 or 50 folk who don't look like us and I said okay and I was gonna go do that because they don't usually hang out over here warehouse had no parking were speaking will be right back with more of today's testing for Victor message from Pastor Paul Sheppard, senior pastor, destiny Christian Fellowship in Fremont, California listen to the broadcast on firstname.lastname@example.org that's Pastor Paul.net burial also find a host of great resources that are online store. Zechariah 4 verse 10 says, do not despise the day of small beginnings for the Lord rejoices to see the work again next Pastor Paul talks about his own small beginnings in the faith it took to persevere join him for the rest of today's message developing a lifestyle of some young came in those days.
No parking were speaking of a street full of low industrial buildings that were built for large staff, social gatherings, so there was very little parking and here we are 250 member church going over there from Palo Alto where we been 6+ years old into the hood and so some I want one of my black members. I can still picture him now came of the recent past. You know the default and I know they've enjoyed the time over here with us at the at the theater but not coming across the freeway with us and I remember saying to him if they don't come. The Lord didn't send because of God told him to be part of his ministry that will go where we go, and he said he was just trying to help me what you feel is be hurt when you suddenly lose 4045 members so you try to protect me. So we get over there. Let me show you what happens when you follow God into the unknown and you get your little thimbleful of brains out of his way. We went in the next 8 1/2 years. We went from 250 members to 2500 members on a street with no parking symbol. What happened to the white folk invasion folk and all. And what happened to them. We went from 20% nonblack took 40% nonblack window parking. I found out that black Wardell only wants who are hungry for Jesus. I found out that God was who said I need the word all the cities were coming. Not only that, but all social economic levels were coming, some coming and broke off that's good for the rich and not rich. Lisa bills a well-paid hangout about making ends meet some folks and hang out all the timely they meet. They fellowship they have weekly gatherings was common, Dr. started coming to the church one day when the Stanford professors. The professor is retired now. He came over and when they told me who he was and we started drawing students from staff at another place, and they started no back in the 90s when the stuff was going on. You remember well his daughter was going to Stanford. Then one Sunday I showed up and they were these black van sitting outside with the motor running and wanted a pastor. We just will let you know that Chelsea that church this morning church. These guys went in before we started okay and they went and checked it out. They want to see you check you out and they said they don't keep the motor running just in case through the AC came said to have friends from Stanford preached to Chelsea and because of the stuff going on with the investigations with her dad, the man investigating it was named Camstar so we all remember that Camstar's daughter was not only at Stanford.
Also at that time she came before the scandal and joined our church so the man who was being investigated daughter come one Sunday and the investigator's daughter, they came to separate. I'm just trying to show you what happened when you let God take him to know and one of the one of the professors I came in and he joined the church and of all the ministries legally got involved and he started sitting right here right now. Started on certain and all students had thought they would have all the professors behind only to walk in the church on the weekend and a professor saying you doing right this way, you can't protect God's gotta follow him where he leads you one day all these fancy churches around town you know where your colleagues and told him we had a little warehouse little dinky messed up warehouse. We barely converted into warships and you're welcome. I'm confused why would you choose and he told me I never forget it.
He said I don't go to church to be impressed or to impress anybody because I want to hear about my life. I want to serve the Lord. I want to hear them say well done, because you have.
I want to hear that since this and when God does something you have your hand on the steering wheel but it's quite a ride. Anyway, you just have to learn how to go with God into the unknown. After all, we are not. The Bible says remember that when I first read this chapter 6 verses 19 and 20. Say this, do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you and you have received from God.
You are not your own price. Therefore honor God with your body. Get it straight. When you get saved you were purchased by the blood of the lamb and so don't bother coming get the same ending giving God your expectations for the rest of your life. Throw them out will take you where he's designed to have you do things you never thought of going take you places you never dreamed of. Proverbs 1921 says many other plans in a man's heart but it is the Lord's purpose that prevails it's the Lord's purpose don't bother making a pledge.
It will make you sum up, I'll tell you why my use of them. Because truth be told he put some of them in your heart in the first place and you think I decided one day. Here's what I want to do in my life. You only know God made the decision, see when you read that verse in Proverbs 37 it says delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.
I believe that that means when you delight yourself in God, often God will put his desires in your heart and so what you end up want to do. God already put it there and you think your show idea God is in yellow right so you can expect the unexpected when you walk with God. That's the whole thing know what teaches us you got expect the unexpected. First Corinthians 2 verses nine and 10 says it is written know why say no. Here is her no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him, but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. In other words, you will know in advance. Many of the things God wants to do for your life, but he'll reveal it somewhere and so often, as has been the case with me often.
He reveals it after he's already done it is already done and I'm looking around at this crazy church about what my black pastor friends used to say when they come and visit or preform you some idea where to start. I was so as not only made me feel bad when you get different conversation with other paths which matured when I bring Mina busy. Well, you know, you know you because they didn't know how to reach anybody who didn't like and I didn't know either, but God did it, and has revealed to me that that's what he was doing and I just had to catch up with what he was already doing and stop letting guys make me feel funny for my church that a certain point when I'm 61 and formal statements to me and I said what actually church is the strange one because your church exist in a diverse world and manages to be homogeneous.
That is okay if you don't feel you know the commonality of race and you want to worship together as it is just that when y'all get to heaven you will have culture shock for me.
I'm coming back for you to come back with me. That's all I'm saying. Where was I so expect the unexpected. Thanks so much for joining us for today's message developing a lifestyle of faith will every day here on the destined for the program.
We ask people to stand with us financially. That's because we are a listener supported ministry we underscore that for just a moment. This means the only way we exist is through the prayers and financial support of people just like you and in 2021. Our prayers that you might consider if you've not done so already becoming a destined for victory. Partner partners are special group of people that give a monthly gift of at least $20 if you can make that commitment. Today we have some special gifts. I'll tell you about a just a moment but pastor Paul Joyce here right now to take a moment please and tell us why partners are so important to this ministry. I'm glad you brought that up when partners are really the lifeline of this ministry without those people committed to giving regularly. We literally could not continue doing what were doing. I guess people hear that a lot, but it is really true without partners.
We simply can't get the gospel out to the world.
The gospel is free but the plumbing cost an awful lot of money and we want to continue preaching. As I've said in times past we've got generations to reach that have never heard the gospel and they misunderstand when they hear people talk about things like serving the Lord and we need to make it plain to them. The only way I can do it is with my partners, helping us reach them through their generous gifts. I'm so grateful for every single partner and I'm playing in 2021.
That God will give us thousands more. There are many more outlets and many more opportunities we could take advantage of in our ministry but the only thing that holds us back is lack of income. So I'm praying that God is going to touch the heart of many more people to realize that with just your gift of $20 or more. You can help us remain strong on the stations and outlets. We are on and reach many more with the gospel of Jesus Christ. Thank you pastor. That's what it's all about reaching more people with the gospel and if you make that commitment by pledging $20 or more per month to help us do that will send you with our thanks a couple of great gifts including one of Pastor Paul's most popular CDs. The best of let my people smile. It's a compilation of some of pastor's most humorous illustrations and stories, something that will be sure to make you laugh and learn at the same time, call 855-339-5500 or mail your gift letting us know you wish to become a partner. The address is destine for victory PO Box 1767, Fremont, CA 94538.
You can also sign up by clicking become a partner right at the top of the email@example.com and if you're already a partner pastor. Paul and I want to say a heartfelt thank you and challenge you to consider becoming a legacy partner. These are special ministry friends are able to support us with gifts of $2500 or more each year. The details are firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 855-339-5500 if you can't become a partner today but would like to make a generous donation to destined for victory. Glad to send you by request Pastor Paul's booklet lessons from the cocoon that's lessons from the cocoon the booklet from Pastor Paul. Our gift to you by request for your generous gift destine for victory developed a lifestyle of faith means seeing our problems through the lens of God's promises when you walk by faith and development of the lifestyle you learn to see your problems through the lens of God's promises. That's next time and pastor Paul Shepard's message developing a lifestyle of until then, remember he who began a good working you will bring it to completion.
In Christ, you are destined for victory