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Finding the Right Partners, Part 1

Destined for Victory / Pastor Paul Sheppard
The Truth Network Radio
September 14, 2021 8:00 am

Finding the Right Partners, Part 1

Destined for Victory / Pastor Paul Sheppard

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September 14, 2021 8:00 am

The role companions played in Paul’s fruitfulness in Corinth; the importance of interdependent relationships in the plan of God; based on Acts 18:1-11. (Included in the 6-part series Making Your Vision a Reality.)

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There are some good things that are stored up in you, but it is up to you to bring them out of you.

God put it in, now you bring it out. God gives the vision, you make it a reality. You cannot say, well, the same God who gave me the vision is just going to make it happen.

There is nothing you can do without God, but there are some things He won't do without you. On today's Destined for Victory, Pastor Paul Shepherd reminds us that we each have a role to play in our own spiritual growth. God is the author and finisher of our faith, but in between our conversion and our entrance into heaven, we have a few responsibilities of our own. And to help us get them done, we need other people, like-minded believers in Christ who will encourage us in our journey through all of life's twists and turns.

Today's message is straight ahead. Stay here or visit to listen on demand. That's

You can also subscribe to our podcast at Spotify, at Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get yours. Now, here's Pastor Paul with today's Destined for Victory message, finding the right partners. Acts chapter 18, I want you to look with me at the first five verses. After this, Paul left Athens and went to Corinth. There he met a Jew named Aquila, a native of Pontus who had recently come from Italy with his wife, Priscilla, because Claudius had ordered all the Jews to leave Rome. Paul went to see them, and because he was a tentmaker, as they were, he stayed and worked with them. Every Sabbath, he reasoned in the synagogue, trying to persuade Jews and Greeks. Then, Silas and Timothy came from Macedonia.

When they did, Paul devoted himself exclusively to preaching, testifying to the Jews that Jesus was the Christ. We'll pause right there. What I want to do is spend a little time talking with you about making your vision a reality, and I want to use as a platform Paul's experience of developing the church at Corinth, making your vision a reality. Now, even if you feel like you have conquered all of the dreams and visions you've had and this isn't a season where you're trying to do anything new, even if that's the case, and that's probably not the case for many of you, I want you to still take note because you are to help mentor and inspire other people in your life to make their vision a reality. For probably 90% of those of you listening to this message, this is relevant for you because there is something that God wants you to do that is not yet done. There's some ministry you are to be part of. There's some business you are to establish. There's some career change.

There's some schooling you are to accomplish to be able to open some other doors. There is some vision that needs to be made a reality, so I want you to pay careful attention as I kind of share from this passage and then help you to understand the importance of fulfilling what God has put in your heart. Let me begin by simply referencing the scripture I love, Ephesians chapter 2 verse 10.

Many of you know it. I have long since memorized it along with verses 8 and 9. Ephesians 2h says, For by grace are we saved through faith, that not of ourselves. It's the gift of God, not of works, lest any man should boast. Many of us are familiar with that, but I want you to become equally familiar with verse 10 which says, For we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

I need you to understand that God has prepared in eternity past for you to do certain things, and not all of them have been done yet. And again, even if you are one of the very few people who could say, I have fought a good fight. I've finished my race. I've kept the faith.

I've got my bags packed. I'm ready to go to heaven. Even if that's you, well, because you haven't made the journey yet, you probably have some other people in your life, especially those who are younger, who need to know that God created them to do some good works, and that they need to be about the business of finishing what God began in them. Let me point you to another scripture, something Jesus said in Matthew chapter 12, verse 35. Matthew chapter 12, verse 35.

And here is what you will find. These are the words of our Savior. He says, the good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him. So if you're in Christ, you have gone from death to life. God has made you his own dear child. And what that means is there are some good things that are stored up in you, but it is up to you to bring them out of you.

God put it in, now you bring it out. God gives the vision, you make it a reality. You cannot say, well, the same God who gave me the vision is just going to make it happen.

One day I'm going to wake up, and my vision is going to be a reality. How many know if you've ever started a business, if you've ever started on a particular vocational path, if you've done anything for God, anything fruitful and productive in your life that brings God glory, it didn't happen automatically. Nothing good happens automatically.

Nothing good. That's why, bless their hearts, people who want to believe that we live in a universe that was just randomly, accidentally created an orderly universe and nobody ordered it, they are sadly mistaken. Sadly mistaken. If you see order, somebody had to do that. Isn't that true? Just look at some rooms in your house. The only way they get orderly is you have to order them. Isn't that true? Look at your closet, look at your garage, look at that place, you always keep the door shut.

There have been people been in your house for seven years, and every time they visit you, they have never been what's behind there? Oh, don't worry about that. Why? Because it's out of order. Out of order.

The only way you get order is you have to purposely bring it to fruition. So Jesus said, I've made you a good man, I've changed you by my grace, and there's good stored up in you, but you have to bring it out of you. Here's the way Paul put it when he wrote to the church at Philippi. He said, it is God who is at work in you, both the willing to do of his good pleasure. He says, so work out your salvation with fear and trembling. So in those two verses, Paul said what I just said. God worked it in, now you work it out. God worked it in, you worked it out. Do not believe in silver platterology. Do not believe that God's just going to drop, I don't know, I just, I was minding my business, next thing I know, I had a graduate degree. I don't know, I was walking down the street, next thing I know, I had a business, and I had all these people on my payroll, and we were reaching so many folks, and we were grossing so many millions of dollars.

That's not going to happen. Just by you walking down the street, you walk down the street only, all you going to do is get tired after a while. But if you're going to bring the good that's stored up in your heart out of you, that's got to be intentional. So I got a question, what's in your heart to do before you die? What's in your heart?

What's there? What has God given you the seed of? If it's God given, it's going to give him praise and glory, it's going to bless you, and it's going to bless you to bless others as well, if God gave it. See, some folks just kind of conjure up a vision, it didn't come from heaven at all, just came from you. That's not what I'm talking about, I'm talking about something that God has put in your heart, that when it is a reality, it'll glorify him, it'll bless you, provide for you, but it'll also bless others. And even if it's not vocational, even if it's voluntary, even if it's something you get no financial resources from, that can be just as fulfilling. Because not every vision is meant to be a vocation. Not every vision is meant to be a vocation. Your vocation is what you are paid to do, your calling, your vision is what you are made to do. So it's not all about money. Now, it's great when your vocation and your vision come together, because you're both doing what's in your heart, and you're getting some change for it. But trust me, there are some things that you are to do, and it really has nothing to do with income, financial income, it has to do with being spiritually resourceful, and doing something that you know is going to bless the kingdom forever.

So you got to think broadly. Think about the greatest evangelists who have ever lived, even in our society, in the United States. We've all known of Billy Graham.

He now is very elderly and is no longer actively traveling the world like he used to, but we know that name because he was known for his wonderful crusades, and millions have gotten saved as a result of his ministry. But think about this, there was somebody who had a passion to be a Sunday school teacher in a small church. That person, or those people as he grew up, who taught him the word of God in a Sunday school class, share in the harvest when he gets these millions saved.

Because if they hadn't done what they were called to do, he would have never become a man equipped in the word of God and able to reach others for Christ. Still ahead, the second half of today's Destined for Victory message with Pastor Paul Sheppard, Senior Pastor at Destiny Christian Fellowship in Fremont, California. We want to thank all of you who sustained Destined for Victory with your prayers and financial support, gifts that help Pastor Paul share the Gospel with a growing audience. Destined for Victory is a listener support of ministry, and right now your help is very much needed and appreciated. We hope you'll be as generous as you can when you give, online at, or by calling 855-339-5500. Think of some of the great heroes of the Christian faith, Abraham, King David, the Apostle Paul. Each of them needed help from other people along the way, and so do we.

Here's Pastor Paul with the rest of today's message, Finding the Right Partners. And so you got to think broadly. It's not always about vocation, but it is about vision.

It is about impact. It is about bringing the kingdom reality to earth. It is as Jesus prayed. He said, thy kingdom come, thy will be done in earth, just like it's being done in heaven. And that too is part of the vision.

Now, I wanted to take some time and cover this topic with you because as a pastor who is now, as I preach this, a solidly middle-aged guy beginning to see on the horizon some years of retirement and not being quite as active in ministry. They're on the horizon. They're not up close now. But I'm just starting to look, and I see some stuff. You know how when you get out in the middle of the ocean, you who cruise like we do, you can get many spots and you can't see anything but water in any direction.

But eventually, if you keep on traveling, you're, you know, a few hours from an island that you're going to dock where you're going to dock, and you begin to make it out. I'm starting to make out some stuff. I'm not there yet. Don't run me up there too quick. Tell the pilot, don't like to go that fast.

But I do see some things. And in this season of my life in ministry, I'm realizing that I want to make sure I get everything out of me. I don't want to die with anything in me. I don't want to retire with anything in me.

I want to get it out and make sure that I've unloaded. And as I thought about this, I said, I'm mentoring too many people, not only in my local church but through the radio ministry. There are folk all over the world who call me their radio pastor.

They've, we've never seen eye to eye physically, but I pastor them through the radio. And I want to make sure the people who I shepherd and who I'm a spiritual father for understand that God raised me up to teach and preach his word. And one of my jobs in your life is to push you out of the nest of comfort and to get you to do something for God and not to just sit on your blessed assurance. Amen.

We got a whole lot of people sitting on the premises rather than standing on the promises. It's time for you to stand on the promises and the promises will make you get out of your comfort zone and do what God has put in your heart. You only know of me because there was a calling on my life very early on in my life and I had to acknowledge it and then I had to begin to prepare for it and then I had to launch out and make it happen. I didn't acknowledge it at first.

There were years I didn't acknowledge it. God's hand was on me. Of course when you're, when you have a calling, you have that calling as Ephesians 2 10 said before the foundation of the world. God prepared in advance and that doesn't mean five years ago. God prepared before you ever came to the earth for you to get certain things done.

Prepared in advance. He prepared you to do them and I was prepared to preach and teach and, and lead God's people. I was prepared for that as a young boy. Some of the saints in the church I grew up in would pat me on my head and say, you're going to be just like your father. My dad was, was their pastor, our pastor growing up and they would pat me on my head and I would think, no, I'm not. Not because I didn't like him.

I loved my dad. I was all, when I was a little young boy, I was always grabbed trying to grab his, his, his, his attache case after he would be done preaching. He put all his wet handkerchiefs. My dad was a fiery preacher and he would go through about a little stack of four or five handkerchiefs when he got through preaching every time all five of them were soaked.

I mean just sweating to beat the band. He was a jumper, runner, hollerer. Oh, my dad was some, I wish they had video in his day.

Oh man, family be making mad money on those videos. He was quite the fiery preacher. I loved him. I've always wanted to be there when I could be back in the office and he changed and he had to change all his clothes when they got through. He would often preach when, y'all who lived in the warmth don't know this, long johns. We got in long john folk up in here, you know something about some long johns.

Look at y'all trying to know about long johns. He preached in them. That's how wet he would be when he was done and he'd change and come out and there was always some of the little young ministers who were his mentees.

They'd come and help him change and get him ready and rub him down in alcohol. It was a production when he got through preaching. That's how passionate a man he was. And as a young boy, I just loved all of that.

But what I didn't like was the lifestyle that I associated in order to be that kind of powerful man of God, the lifestyle. My dad, he loved people. He was always out with people. He was always hanging out with folk. And when he got tired of hanging out with him out there, he'd bring them all to the house and they hang out at our house.

We come on from school, we never knew when we were gonna have our house to ourselves. Always some person from some, and then they'd drive in from out of town. Because he had that kind of personality, he'd make everybody feel like their best friend. And then they'd walk away, he said, now who was that? He just had that ability. Folk would walk up to him at some convention and he would just talk to them, have the biggest conversation, and then they'd walk away, he said, now who was that? He knew he knew him.

Or he took their word for it. But that was just his personality. But he was always with people. And my friends in the neighborhood, when I'm a little elementary school boy, and my friend, we'd be playing outside till dinner time, and we would see all of the other fathers drive home from work and go in the house and then those kids would have to go because they got to wash up, get ready for dinner. I'm talking about the 60s, y'all, 60s, 60s.

Y'all never saw life like that, but it was the 60s. And all the other kids had to go in because their daddies pulled up, it's time for dinner. My daddy never pulled up.

Rarely, I'll say rarely pulled up at dinner time. He got home when he got home. He was often, he called my mother, I'm at sister Tyler Ferrell's house, she fixed me a steak. And he's sitting somewhere, and my mother, he married the perfect woman. She knew all the women, she was comfortable with anybody she wasn't comfortable with, he knew about it. I know that now being an adult, back in those days it was a non-issue, but I now know if there was anybody, they talked about that behind closed doors. Now you are not to park your legs up under her dinner table.

Let the church say amen. You know, but so many of those old saints, they just loved him, and they'd fix him his favorite meals in the makeover. My mom was good, she like, one less bell to answer. But I saw that lifestyle, and I would envy the kids whose daddies you knew were always gonna be pulling up at 515. One of my friends, Craig, his dad would drive up in his station wagon, I can picture him now, he'd get out, had his pipe in his mouth.

They going in, then Craig got to go. I loved that. That looked like TV. And I thought, I want a TV family when I grow up. So much as I love my daddy, if you gotta be unpredictable to be a pastor, I don't want to do that.

And I spent my life saying, I love him, my young life saying I love him, but I don't want to do that. But the saints would say, you're gonna be just like your father. And I thought, no I'm not. I'm gonna pull up.

I won't have a pipe, saints taught us against pipes, but I'm gonna pull up and go in my house and my kids gonna stop playing and come in. And we gonna sit down like, what was that family, the Nelsons from the 60s, all them family shows, Ozzie and Harriet, all that stuff. Young people don't know what in the world we're talking about. Long story short, the time came when I had to acknowledge it. I was ministering as a young person in high school and college. I was already beginning to do youth meetings. Churches would have me come speak to their young people. But I'd tell the pastor, now I'm not a preacher, but because I'm saved, I'll come talk to the young people. And I would come and share a message and all that.

And people would respond and what have you. And I told you when you met Seth at Beverly's son, Steven, when he came to our church because we're supporting him now out on the mission field. And he remembered how, he said, yeah, when you came to Kansas City to do our youth service, my parents kicked me out my room. You were staying in my room. And when I was leaving, the pastor was taking me back to the airport in Kansas City on Sunday afternoon in the 70s. He, at a traffic light or something, he looked at me, shook his finger in my face and he said, I don't care what you call yourself. God's hand is on you, you're a preacher.

The sooner you say yes, the better off you'll be. He was right. And eventually I had to stop fighting it and had to begin to prepare myself academically for the ministry I knew was going to take place. I was still hoping it wouldn't be pastor.

I was still hoping I could be just like preacher on the weekend. Every great leader in the Bible had partners in ministry. King David had Jonathan as well as Nathan the prophet. The apostle Paul surrounded himself with men like Silas and Timothy.

Jesus hand selected Peter, James and John and the rest of his disciples. And you and I need partners too. God has so arranged things that we cannot achieve our destiny without the help of other people. And as you partner with us financially today, we have a great thank you gift to share with you. A booklet from Pastor Paul Shepherd that goes hand in hand with the message, junk removal for the soul.

All of us have some habits from our old life that we need to set aside so that we can embrace the newness of who we are in Christ. Pastor Paul offers some practical biblical advice about doing just that in this booklet. Our gift to you today by request for your generous gift to Destin for Victory. So call us at 855-339-5500 or visit to make a safe and secure donation online. You can also mail your gift to Destin for Victory, post office box 1767 Fremont, California 94538.

Again the address is Destin for Victory, box 1767 Fremont, California 94538. If you need prayer today, use the contact us feature at and share your prayer request with us. While you're there be sure to ask for Pastor Paul's monthly letter of encouragement yours at no cost or obligation. You can do what's in your heart but you cannot do it alone. You can do it but you can't do it by yourself. You are going to need partners. There is no anointing that will allow you to do everything that's in your heart by yourself. That's tomorrow when Pastor Paul Shepherd shares his message finding the right partners. Until then remember, he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion. In Christ you are Destined for Victory.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-08-23 05:12:31 / 2023-08-23 05:21:56 / 9

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