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Built to Last, Part 3 (cont'd)

Destined for Victory / Pastor Paul Sheppard
The Truth Network Radio
June 30, 2021 8:00 am

Built to Last, Part 3 (cont'd)

Destined for Victory / Pastor Paul Sheppard

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June 30, 2021 8:00 am

The importance of cultivating the right relationships with the people God sends into our lives; seven building blocks for strong relationships.

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Love is not talk. Love is action. Love is a verb.

It is an action word. It does stuff. Love acts in the best interest of its object. Don't sit around talking about all this love you have in your heart and never expresses itself in any way that blesses my life. It's our greatest gift. It makes the world go round. It conquers all. Let's talk about love on today's Destined for Victory with Pastor Paul Shepherd. Well, Hollywood may tell you that love is a feeling that two people can ride a wave of emotion to the shores of happily ever after.

But until those feelings become a conscious decision, until we make a choice to love someone no matter where the winds of emotion may take us, then it isn't love at all. Today, Pastor Paul Shepherd explains the importance of building godly relationships on a foundation of love, which means a foundation of action. Stay right here or listen on demand at That's But right now, here is Pastor Paul with today's Destined for Victory message, Built to Last. Peter said if you all in the church are loving each other right, he says that love will manifest itself by covering over each other's sins.

What does that mean? That means when love sees you wrong, love sees you act inappropriately, love sees you outside of God's plan and purpose in some area of your life. Love will vow to cover over that sin. Love does not choose to expose what it can cover.

Now, make sure you understand what Peter is not saying. Peter is not saying that love covers up. He says love covers over, meaning love's goal is not for you to die in shame.

Love's goal is for you to be restored redemptively. So the first thing love will do in a case like this is it will cover over. So if I am sprawled out in embarrassment, it will cover my shame. It will keep others from gawking at me.

It will clear out the crowd and then it will minister to me at the point of my need. You see what I'm saying? Love covers over. If someone is sprawled out and they're in an embarrassing situation, the first thing love does is says let's cover over. Let's get a blanket. Love will then look at everybody standing around all the passers-by and gawkers.

What happened to him? Love will say, no, no, move on. Everything's all right. Go ahead on about your business. That's what Jesus did with the woman caught in the act of adultery. He covered over her sin. He didn't cover it up.

He covered over. What's the first thing he did? Got rid of all the onlookers and hypocrites and the folk who dragged her out there in the first place.

Because you know the story. These folk dragged this woman out. Saying to Jesus, we caught her in the act of adultery. Question is, what were you all doing looking at the act of adultery?

Come on. What were you all doing? Looking, looking in the window. Oh, you know, that's a shame. Oh, I tell you, Lord, the devil is busy this evening. Oh, look at this. Oh, man. What are you all doing?

Looking at it. And then they claim to have caught her in the act. If she's in the act of adultery and they only bring one person to Jesus, where's the dude? Now, we are smart people, but we haven't figured out how to commit adultery by ourselves. It takes two, baby. Come on, somebody.

It takes two. Where's the man? They knew better. These little prissy Pharisees, they knew better than run up on some dude.

They know white roles when he got through with them, their roles wouldn't have been white. They waited till my man got out of there and then they grabbed that innocent woman. Back in old days, when the sisters were all still vulnerable. You run up on the wrong sister today, she will jack you up.

These folk been doing Pilates and kind on that. They'll hurt somebody. You better think twice, fooling with some of these folk. She end up dragging you to Jesus. You all beat up, she drag you out there. He was tripping, Jesus. You need to do something with him. I'm going on about my business now.

Where am I? You're messing me up. All right. And so they dragged this woman out to Jesus and the Bible says that the first thing Jesus did was not aimed at her. Because he's covering over her sin so that he can truly deal with the issue. He can't deal with the issue and get through to her heart until he's cleared out the hypocrites and the people who mean her no good. So he writes in the dirt after saying, whoever is without sin, go on and start. You all want to have a stone in, huh? All right.

Long as you don't have any sin in your life, go on, get started. Meanwhile, he wrote in the dirt. And whatever he wrote cleared all of them out. And by the time he cleared them out, now he's ready to deal with the heart of the issue without shame. The goal is not to shame her.

The goal is to lift her. And so Jesus says, where are your accusers? She said, no one accuses me now. And Jesus said, neither do I condemn you. Neither do I condemn you.

That makes the holy folks nervous. Jesus, she was caught in the act of adultery. What do you mean you don't condemn her? Because Jesus told us in John 317, I didn't come into the world to condemn the world. I came into the world that the world might be saved. I'm not here to condemn this woman. So what does he say?

Neither do I condemn you. And then the next sentence says, now go and sin no more. See, when love covers, it's not covering up.

It's covering over. Let's take away the hypocrisy. Let's take away the onlookers.

Let's take away people who don't have your best interests at heart. And now that I have you alone in a moment of honesty, let me look at you in your eyes and say, this is not God's plan for your life. Now you go and sin no more. God is showing you how much he loves you by not allowing you to be stoned. Do you know every one of us listening to this message has already done enough in our lives for all of us to be dead a few times over? There are some people who die having done less than you and I have done.

How is it that we're still making it? God covered. Oh, I'm so glad God's love covers.

Doesn't cover up so that you stay in your mess, but it covers over. And then Jesus clears out the hypocrisy and the folks who would condemn you and he whispers in your ear, I've got a better plan for you than this. I don't want you living like this. I don't want you acting like this.

I got something better for you. And he covers over and then he ministers to us at the point of our need. And Peter said, if you really love one another, that's the way you ought to treat one another.

Cover over a multitude of sins. When a person speaks disrespectfully to you or unkind or just kind of pushes a button of you based on the way they said something, you don't have to always confront them. There's a time to confront and if you can't get rid of a certain feeling, sooner or later it's better for you to go on and confront so that you can get it straight. But you ought to be growing in love to the place where when somebody hurts your feelings or speaks a little insensitively or you don't always have to jack me, always have to send me an email, always have to call me. When you spoke to me, that made me feel so horrible. You ought to be grown enough to just cover some things. I didn't like the way that sound but I love them so I'm going to cover that. I'm not going to make a big deal about that. I'm going to cover that.

You ought to go through your life just deciding there's some things it's not even worth a conversation. I got enough love to cover that. Come on somebody.

I got enough love to cover. Yeah, you looked at me a little funny. You acted a little funny. That felt awful disrespectful. I wish you had said that differently. I wish you had not treated me that way. But I can cover that.

It's just like having enough money in your pocket and somebody's standing there at the counter and they're fishing around. I might have to put this back. No, no, that's all right. I got this covered. I got this covered.

How much you need? I got that covered. Go on, go on. Have a good day. I got enough.

You ought to have enough love to just cover some things. Yes, there is a right time to confront. And if it's going to bother you for three, five, seven or eight days, you can't get it off your mind and it's best to go on and have a conversation. Go on and have a conversation.

Say, you know, when you said that, it really hurt me. But you ought to live your life where there's enough major stuff where you pick your battles. Don't make everything a battle. In the body of Christ, don't make everything a battle.

Soon as somebody hurts you on your ministry team, soon as somebody say something in your growth group and you got to go copper attitude. No, no, just have enough love to cover. That's all right.

That sounded like a shot, but I'm going to cover it. We'll be right back with more of today's Destined for Victory message from Pastor Paul Shepherd, Senior Pastor at Destiny Christian Fellowship in Fremont, California. Listen to this program any time on demand at Pastor Paul dot net. That's Pastor Paul dot net.

Or subscribe to the podcast at I heart Google podcast or wherever you go to get your programs with apologies to Tina Turner. Love is not a secondhand emotion. True love is not an emotion at all. Here's Pastor Paul with the rest of today's Destined for Victory message built to last. I'll tell you how else love acts.

Read First Corinthians 13. Love is patient. Don't tell me you love me and you're always impatient with me. Love is kind. Don't tell me you love me and you're always speaking disrespectfully. Love does not envy.

Don't tell me you love me and you get mad every time God blesses me. Love does not boast. Love is not proud. Love is not rude. Love is not self seeking.

Oh, watch this. Love is not easily angered. There are times when it's appropriate to get angry, but not every day.

Come on, somebody. You cop attitude every day. It's not the people around you, baby. If you get mad every day.

The enemy is in a me. You need to calibrate your life a little better than this, where you don't get ticked off every single time something happens that doesn't go your way. Not easily angered. Watch this one. Love doesn't keep a record of wrongs.

Love doesn't keep a record of wrongs. Now, that ought to make some of us sprawl out on the altar right there. You just ought to be laid all out. You all go somewhere else. This is my space right here.

I'm later. Laid out before God. Oh, God, save me all over again, Jesus. Because I got a record book in my heart, in my mind. I know how many times they did it. And this is not a function of mere memory. I'm not talking about memory. I'm talking about holding an offense. See, because once you have redemptively dealt with something, an offense, and you have truly forgiven from your heart, then that offense goes away. Even if the memory of it remains, the offense goes away. It is no longer an offense. It is a past offense, a used to be offense. So that if I offend again later on down the line, love will not bring trot this back out. Oh, I'm trying to help somebody.

Love doesn't trot back out. Wait a minute now. Not only did you do it now, but wait, wait, wait now.

And go in the closet and bring all the other stuff out and rehearse all of that. No, no, that was forgiven. That was covered. What you doing bringing that out? That's like exhuming a body.

No, no, that's done. Love doesn't keep a record of wrongs. Love puts away. Love forgives.

That means to send away. Love does not delight in evil, Paul goes on to say, but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. So if we're going to have right relationships in the body of Christ, then we've got to walk in oneness.

We've got to walk in love. Let me just introduce a third concept. A third building block is covenant. Covenant.

What do I mean by that? A covenant is a rock solid agreement, a binding contract, certified by an oath. That's the way it was handled in Bible times. And 1 Samuel 18, 3 says, Jonathan made a covenant with David because he loved him as himself. Now today, we don't enter into covenants when it comes to interpersonal relationships with the exception of marriage. Other than marriage, we typically don't enter into covenants. But in Bible days, you didn't have to be married to somebody to enter into a covenant with them. The covenant was an expression of a binding commitment to you. This is what you can expect from me.

This is what you can count on from me. Covenant. Now, while we don't enter into actual legal covenants outside of marriage these days when it comes to our interpersonal relationships, and I'm not suggesting we should. But we must make a commitment to not have a legal covenant, have a covenant of agreement between ourselves, a sort of verbal working agreement.

Here's what I mean by that. If you want to truly honor the relationships God brings into your life, be clear with people about what they can expect from you. And be clear with them what you desire from them.

One of the problems we suffer with in our relationships in the body of Christ is a lack of clarity and understanding. You cannot expect from me what I don't know is being expected. And you can't expect from me what I have not signed off on.

See, some people tell you what they expect and never ask you can they count on that from you. But they're holding you as though there's a binding agreement. You can't have a contract and there's only one signature. Come on, somebody.

If this is a binding agreement between two parties, there have to be two signatures. I got to sign off. I expect you to treat me a certain way and you lay out and make it clear. You've expressed your desire. Now put the paper in front of me, so to speak, and see if I sign off. Alright, I agree with you.

You can count on that from me. Now we have a working understanding. But we suffer in our relationships from a lack of understanding. There has to be a meeting of the minds in order for there to be a contract. There has to be a meeting of the minds. There has to be a working understanding here. And I see in the body of Christ a lot of times there is a lack of clarity. We don't know what we can expect from one another.

And you need to make that plain. If God has brought you onto a ministry team, into a growth group, into interpersonal relationships with others in the body of Christ, you're going to work together, you're going to serve together. Or God has brought you into a relationship that's moving toward marriage or whatever it is. There's got to be a meeting of the minds. When we sit down with people in pre-engagement counseling, we forget all that lovey-dovey stuff, your feelings. I'm not here for that. Let's talk about who's going to do the dishes.

Come on. Because marriage is made of the nuts and bolts of everyday mundane stuff. Who's going to work, who's going to bring in the bacon, then who's going to fry it up in the pan? How do we make this work?

What can you count on from me? And you have working understanding. Because love has got to resolve itself into promises, into agreements, into understanding so that people know what they can count on one from another. That's the only way it works. That's the only way this works.

It doesn't work any other way. There must be a meeting of the minds. And I'm here to tell you that the people in your life deserve clarity. Don't be one of these folk who say, you know what you did. If I knew what I did, I wouldn't be asking you.

You ever seen somebody offended with you and you go to find out why and they tell you, you know? I promise you, I don't know. Well, you ought to know. Okay?

Sorry, I don't. Want to help me out? That's the only way we can work it. There's got to be an understanding. And some of us have gotten into a habit of just throwing away people instead of working through. See, relationships are hard work.

Relationships at last that are going to make it through the storms, they're hard work. It's too easy to toss them, but that's not God's will. God is not ordaining disposable relationships. When God brings somebody in your life, you got to work it out so that together you can get where God is taking you. You got to work it out. Years ago, the now late Mrs. Ruth Graham was asked by an interviewer. Now, Mrs. Graham, be honest with me. Have you ever considered divorcing Billy? And she said, I can honestly tell you, I have never in all the years we've been married, I've never considered divorcing Billy.

I have considered killing him. That's the stuff of real life. But she had made the decision, we're in it to win it. We're in this together. I'm not going anywhere and neither are you. I'm not letting you leave me.

Been with you with the lean times, you're not leaving me now. That's the stuff of relationship. But it takes work. Because there will be those days where you feel like I can't take it.

But you've got to clarify, you've got to talk, you've got to say here's where I am, here's why I'm hurt, here's what I'm thinking, here's what I'm feeling. It takes vulnerability. And that vulnerability works against your pride. See your pride, that's why you've got to get out of independence and interdependence. Your pride says, you don't have to take this. You're proud to get you messed up. You're proud to sit you outdoors. See how warm your pride keeps you. You're proud to have you all in a civil court, splitting up stuff, who get that chair. Nonsense.

We were together when we bought the chair, we're going to both sit in the chair. But it takes work. Not easy. Takes work. Takes a meeting of the minds. Takes understanding. Takes working it through. Okay, now, wait, explain to me this.

Okay, now help me understand when you did this, what was that about? And working it through. And we have to do that in all of the relationships God brings into our lives. So there's a meeting of the mind. The Bible says these men entered into covenant with each other.

There was a solid agreement and understanding of what they could expect one from another. Godly relationships are built on the foundation of oneness, of love, and of covenant. We live in a world of contracts that can be easily broken. But God has a better way. His love is rooted in a covenant, not a contract. It's a covenant He never breaks. One from which nothing can separate us, not even our own mistakes. Let's strive to love one another that same way. Thanks so much for joining us for today's message built to last.

Now, Pastor Paul Shepherd joins me from his studio in California. Pastor, we are entering into a very critical time in the life of most ministries. It's always the case when we get to summertime, but this time I think people are ready to break out. You know, the vaccine is more widely distributed.

Vacation rentals are booked at a record pace. The world is ready to get out of this quarantine. But there's a concern that ministries like ours don't end up forgotten. Would you speak to that for just a moment?

Yes, sir. Every summer I have that concern and I say, okay, Lord, please help the people to remember that the bills don't stop in the summertime. The gospel is definitely free. I'm glad and I'm able to say to all of our donors, you don't have to even think twice about it.

To us, you're helping us reach others. Pastor Paul doesn't take a single dime of compensation from Destined for Victory resources. My church takes really good care of me and I'm so glad that they do.

And so I'm able to serve the audience through Destined for Victory without any charge to them. But while the gospel is free, the plumbing costs a lot of money. So even in the summer, I pray that our listeners will be faithful in their giving because the bills continue to come and I want to preach all the way through the summer and let people know while they're enjoying vacations, the word of God stands forever.

Well, that scripture is from Isaiah 40, verse 8. The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever. Thanks for that reminder, Pastor Paul, and for all you're doing to share the gospel through the Destined for Victory broadcast. As you're able to make your most generous gift during this critical time, we have a great resource for you, two in fact. The first is Pastor Paul's book, Why God Created Dads, an insightful and inspirational look at the subject of fatherhood through the lens of scripture. The second is an audio CD, A Tribute to My Dad, a message delivered by Pastor Paul following the death of his father.

Both men and women will be inspired by these timely resources. That's Why God Created Dads and A Tribute to My Dad, our gifts to you this month for your best donation of $25 or more to Destined for Victory. And today is the final day of this special offer, so be sure to contact us right away. Call 855-339-5500 or visit to make a safe and secure donation online. You can also mail your gift to Destined for Victory, Post Office Box 1767, Fremont, California 94538. Again, that's Destined for Victory, Box 1767, Fremont, California 94538. I want to tell you that God is calling you to a place in your life where you are willing to sacrifice for the persons that he brings into your life.

There is no point in having a love that doesn't go out of its way. That's tomorrow when Pastor Paul Sheppard shares his message built to last. Until then remember, he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion. In Christ, you are Destined for Victory. you
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-09-25 20:40:54 / 2023-09-25 20:50:30 / 10

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