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Sermon: Breakthrough insights pt. 2!
Series: Breakthrough 2020!
Thesis: In 2020 we are looking for a Breakthrough in our lives – a breakthrough from Covid 19, from divisive politics, from societal division and dissension in our society – but to get the desired breakthrough in our lives we need to have 20 – 20 vision into the spiritual realm and see through God’s eyes.
2 Corinthians 10:3-4: “For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.”
This morning, I want us to continue to talk about spiritual breakthroughs. But more importantly about having a spiritual breakthrough personally and the process that seems to connect with getting them. We need to push forward in 2020 with the foresight that a breakthrough is possible – that a miracle is possible - we need to see things through the eyes of faith and not fear – through the eyes of God and not man – through the eyes of a biblical world view not a secular world view - I believe we need to give over our negative thoughts and mindsets to the Lord which I believe leads to breakdowns. But to see a breakthrough is possible we must observe the patterns of breakthrough.
Putty Putman stated, “Understanding that life happens in the midst of this invisible spiritual battle helps us make sense of our lives. Each of us has places in our lives where God’s rule has been realized, and we have other places where it has not yet been realized…Some days we will see glorious breakthroughs. Some days we will get to be the very hands and voice of God. We will see God’s rule established and the enemy’s rule overthrown. It is a glorious and beautiful thing. Other days, we may not win the battle. We will give it our all and advance the cause the best way we know how, but we may not see God’s kingdom come the way we expect. We will not win every battle, but in time we will win the war. This perspective is vital because it gives us a means to process situations in which we do not see the kingdom breaking through.”
Psalm 34:18: “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”
The AHA moments of life – were the light goes on and the breakthrough happens is to be embraced wholeheartedly - quote:
“ AHA is not a self-help process. It’s the antithesis of a self-help book. What Bizarro is to Superman, this book is to the self-help genre. This journey begins with a rejection of your self’s offer to help. The Story of AHA Instead of self-help, we are asking for God’s help, because AHA is a spiritual experience that brings about supernatural change. More specifically, let’s define the word aha this way: “a sudden recognition that leads to an honest moment that brings lasting change.” Idleman, Kyle. AHA: The God Moment That Changes Everything (pp. 13-14). David C. Cook. Kindle Edition.
Breakthrough is a sudden dramatic important advance – a breakout – it comes in many ways:
Science has breakthroughs
Financial realms have breakthroughs
Healthcare has breakthroughs
Medicine can have breakthroughs
Schooling has breakthroughs
Marriages have breakthroughs
Relationships can have a breakthrough
Politics can have a breakthrough
Businesses can have breakthroughs
We can have Spiritual breakthroughs
Pain can lead to a breakthrough – specifically speaking spiritual breakthroughs!
Scripture: Psalm 77:2:
“In days filled with trouble, I search for you. And at night I tirelessly lift my hands in prayer, refusing comfort.” CEV
“When I was in distress, I sought the Lord; at night I stretched out untiring hands and my soul refused to be comforted.” NIV
1. Breakthrough comes as God prepares the way both naturally and spiritually.
a. God does orchestrate things in our life for a breakthrough!
i. Example of John the Baptist and Jesus
1. John 1 He was sent to prepare the way for Jesus!
ii. Example of in current events:
1. The changing tide in America – share about what you are seeing on You Tube with people’s feelings and view of President Trump.
a. “1 I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— 2 for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. 3 This is good, and pleases God our Savior…” -1 Timothy 2:1-3
b. Is God preparing the way for a national breakthrough?
i. Changing the views of President Trump?
ii. People seeing through how he is viciously attacked everyday by anti-god spirits!
iii. People are seeing that the media has a sinister agenda.
c. Here is my challenge for you! Start praying for the President whether you like him or not and see what God says to you! Pray for Congress – both sides and see what God starts doing in your heart.
b. John 15:1-5 – God does prune us so we can have a spiritual growth and a breakthrough.
i. He trims and prunes us in our lives for a spiritual breakthrough - it can be painful – it can be eye opening.
ii. The Holy Spirit will bring a discontent in our lives and open our eyes to the destruction of sin in it.
iii. He will seek to remove toxic relationships out of our life so we can see clearly.
iv. He will remove places from your heart that hold you back for a breakthrough – and open up the hidden places that need to be cleaned out.
v. Friends may have to go – Scripture states we are to choose friends wisely.
1. Proverbs 12:26: “The righteous choose their friends carefully, but the way of the wicked leads them astray.”
vi. God allows the pain to drive us toward making the changes that need to happen for spiritual breakthrough.
1. This could be our mindsets
2. Could be our perceptions of others
3. It could be tolerance of sin which must go
4. Pain has away of opening up to us what really matters in life
a. Share about the book you are reading called Deadline by Randy Alcorn.
c. Proverbs 20:30:
i. “Blows and wounds cleanse away evil, and beatings purge the inmost being.” NIV
ii. “A severe beating can knock all of the evil out of you!” CEV
iii. “Blows that wound cleanse away evil; strokes make clean the innermost parts.” ESV
1. Truth can hurt – it will wound our egos who think we are always right - sometimes it takes painful experiences to change our life and bring the breakthrough.
2. Rick Warren stated, “You will never change in life until the pain is greater than your fear of change and it’s the pain that motivates you to change by overcoming the fear”
a. So, to seek change or to seek a spiritual breakthrough means we allow the pain to outweigh the fear of change.
d. Book Leadership Pain – the power of truth – The book is a Leadership book and how to get breakthroughs – Chand states and shows how pain will bring growth and change to our lives:
i. Chand states: “It’s inevitable, inescapable. By its very nature, leadership produces change, and change—even wonderful growth and progress—always involves at least a measure of confusion, loss, and resistance. To put it the other way: leadership that doesn’t produce pain is either in a short season of unusual blessing or it isn’t really making a difference. So, Growth = Change/ Change = Loss - Loss = Pain/ Thus, Growth = Pain.” From Chand, Samuel R. Leadership Pain (p. 5). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition.
1. He also states, “Paradoxically, Christians often have more difficulty handling personal pain than unbelievers. They look at the promises of God and conclude that God should fill their lives with joy, love, support, and success. That’s reading the Bible selectively. The Scriptures state—clearly and often—that enduring pain is one of the ways, perhaps the main way, God works his grace deeply into our lives.” Chand, Samuel R. . Leadership Pain (p. 11). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition.
e. Here are some other quotes on pain = growth = breakthrough:
i. “I am not a theologian or a scholar, but I am very aware of the fact that pain is necessary to all of us. In my own life, I think I can honestly say that out of the deepest pain has come the strongest conviction of the presence of God and the love of God. —Elisabeth Elliott from Chand, Samuel R. Leadership Pain (p. 6). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition.
ii. “Pain is meant to wake us up. People try to hide their pain. But they’re wrong. Pain is something to carry, like a radio. You feel your strength in the experience of pain. It’s all in how you carry it. That’s what matters. Pain is a feeling. Your feelings are a part of you. Your own reality. If you feel ashamed of them, and hide them, you’re letting society destroy your reality. You should stand up for your right to feel your pain.” —Jim Morrison, Nobody Gets Out of Here Alive from Chand, Samuel R. . Leadership Pain (p. 11-12). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition.
1. The truth is Pain is our greatest teacher and needs to be viewed as a means to spiritual breakthrough!
a. Jesus endured the pain to bring us spiritual breakthrough!
2. Chand states, “You’ll grow only to the threshold of your pain.”
a. Let me word this way “Your breakthrough is connected to how you handle and mange your pain.”
b. He adds, “See pain as your greatest teacher. Don’t avoid it. Don’t minimize it. And don’t numb yourself to it. Pain never just goes away. When it’s not resolved, it sinks deep into our minds, creates anxiety in our hearts, causes resentment and depression, and creates tension in our relationships. As the old motor oil ad said, “Pay me now or pay me later.” Face pain sooner and you’ll learn important lessons about God, about yourself, and how to help others grow as they encounter difficulties. Face it later with devastating results.” From Chand, Samuel R. . Leadership Pain (p. 19). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition.
f. Spiritual Breakthrough comes when we have a renewed sense of getting into God’s Word – this is how God prepares the way for breakthrough.
i. When we have an unction from within to dig deep into the Word of God for revelation and insight – the Holy Spirit is at work preparing the way for the breakthrough.
1. I don’t know about you but when I get into the Word – I sense God’s presence and His Words come alive to me.
a. These Words spoken to me in study stir my heart and open my eyes to how God is working and preparing the way for breakthrough.
2. Studying the Word of God ignites breakthroughs – it prepares our hearts with truth – with wisdom and with revelation.
a. It also shows us the lies of the enemy verses the truth of God.
b. God’s Truth bring freedom and the enemies lies bring bondage.
3. When Studying God’s Word it will ignite a passion in our hearts for God and His ways – when this happens we are being prepared for a breakthrough.
4. We need Biblical truth and Wisdom from God to get the breakthrough – breakthrough will not come from evil ways – breakthrough only comes from truth – so it’s important to yield to His promptings to dive into His Word.
ii. Breakthroughs will happen when you seek Gods help to bring them – you go after them whole heartedly – did you hear me – we have to go after the things - of God to see a breakthrough.
1. Remember the opposite of breakthrough is a setback – dead end – deadlock – no progress!
2. Breakthrough comes from prayer – fasting – and repentance which brings healing – they always go hand and hand.
a. Sin will always hinder a breakthrough! Did you hear me sin will always hinder a breakthrough – so sin needs to be forsaken.
i. The sin factor – what ever happened to sin!
1. Years ago, I read a book “What ever happened to Sin?” It is no longer in print – maybe because for most people “Sin is not a problem anymore.” the book was centering in on how preachers moved away from talking and pointing out the problem of sin and the negative impact that was having on Christian and society.
a. Here was the essence of the thoughts about sin:
i. “As long as people have a low view of sin and the law of God, they will be unable to grasp their enslavement to the darkness of rebellion against our Creator. Seeing the true glory of the gospel requires us to see the darkness through which it shines in all its fullness.”
1. Quote from Dr. Russell Moore and his sermon which helps turn us away from a low view of sin and God’s law, reminding us of the heinousness of sin so that we might see the riches of divine grace.
2. From https://www.ligonier.org/learn/conferences/after-darkness-light-2015-national-conference/whatever-happened-to-sin/#:~:text=Message%2010%2C%20Whatever%20Happened%20to%20Sin%3F%3A%20As%20long,through%20which%20it%20shines%20in%20all%20its%20fullness.
2. Sin will hinder and stop a breakthrough - always will – sin will distort you vision, your focus and your walk with God.
a. Sin will always take you further than you want to go into darkness.
3. Sin will always take you further away from a spiritual breakthrough not closer to it.
a. Going deeper into sin is not going to help you get a spiritual breakthrough!
b. The truth is spiritual Healing comes from repentance and a humble heart
i. Pray comes into play here – we need to connect with God – repent – turn from the sin holding you back – if you want a spiritual breakthrough.
1. Turning from sin opens up the connection with God – practicing sin drives us away from God. Always has always will.
ii. Fasting is also a key hear because it puts the flesh under control and opens the door to unleash the breakthrough,.
1. The flesh will hinder your breakthrough.
c. When the Holy Spirit tugs at our heart about our sin we need to deal with it.
i. We need to cast it out of our lives.
ii. We need to turn from it.
iii. Jesus will bring loving discipline and that creates repentance which opens the door for deliverance.
iv. Ask Jesus to deliver you from your sin – no seriously!
d. In the Bible when breakthroughs came there was always a person doing the praying and fasting – a person crying out to God!
i. David – He was finally chosen as king of Israel– but then all hell breaks loose.
1. I Chronicles 14:8-11 – the Philistines attack because he has become king they see David as weak and it’s their chance to destroy Israel.
a. David moves to the fortified place to regroup.
i. Philistines surround him but David sought the Lord in prayer!
1. Key point – We are never fight a battle without asking God first in prayer what to do – and I add and fasting too!
a. For example: My court case against Urban Coalition for discrimination of a handicap person.
i. Set the scene
ii. The connection to civil rights person working on her home
iii. The favor and direction of the Lord
iv. The Scripture verse: Romans 3:4: “No, indeed! God tells the truth, even if everyone else is a liar. The Scriptures say about God, “Your words will be proven true, and in court you will win your case.”
v. The opposition
vi. The lies
vii. The Cancer – the visit – the salvation
viii. The prayers
ix. The win – I used the money to go to Bible College! God provided!
2. Lord says to David “Go for it.”
a. He defeats them
b. He then says – “I watched the Lord breakthrough my enemies – he called the place “Were God breakthrough” it was as a pinnacle moment in his life and leadership.
3. The Church should be a fortified place for all of us to go to – so as to seek direction from the Lord.
ii. Jehoshaphat is another example of the power of prayer and fasting to bring the breakthrough.
1. 2 Chronicles 20:1-4
a. They had a breakthrough as a nation but then the enemy says we need to attack – we cannot let them have a breakthrough – So 3 kings unite together to steal back the breakthrough from Israel.
b. Jehos… is told a large army is coming – he know has a choice - fear or faith?
i. Surrender or fight?
c. He decides to seek the Lord for guidance – he made a choice - a resolution – no fear – I am not going to be afraid I am going to God for insight. He makes a resolution to seek the Lord and not let fear control him.
i. He proclaims a fast as a nation to get the breakthrough – they fast and pray.
d. 4 things to note here for breakthroughs:
i. You must choose not to – “No worry” - instead focus on God! “Worry no – God Yes!”
ii. Make a resolution to choose God not self
iii. Fast – individually and nationally
iv. The people all prayed together – individually and nationally.
1. God has the armies attack each other – it became a battle with themselves - Israel did not have to fight - God did it for them and brought the breakthrough.
2. The same can happen today if we pray and fast for the enemies of the USA – the enemies of God – to our One Nation Under God. Yes God can have them turn on themselves!
e. Philippians 4:6-8 – Speaks of things to do for the breakthrough – 4 habits to do!
i. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”
ii. The big 4 for to do for a breakthrough:
1. “No Worry” – in other words don’t worry about anything – nothing – don’t fear or fret – no anxiety – this is a hard command to keep – we all break it – right! But it is true! We need to battle the disease of worry!
a. It’s a command of God – don’t worry – most broken commandment I think there is.
b. Matthew 6:34: “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Jesus said this!
i. Do not worry about tomorrow…
1. We mess up today by regretting the past and worrying about things way too much.
ii. We think if we worry we can change things buy it has never changed anything!
1. Worry it does not change the past or control the future – you just mess up today’s journey - so pray instead of worry – “Worry is stewing without doing” Rick Warren
iii. Worry is focusing on my fears not on God – You act like God does not care so you negate 4 -6,000 promises in the Bible.
c. Romans 8:5-12: “5People who are ruled by their desires think only of themselves. Everyone who is ruled by the Holy Spirit thinks about spiritual things. 6If our minds are ruled by our desires, we will die. But if our minds are ruled by the Spirit, we will have life and peace. 7Our desires fight against God, because they do not and cannot obey God’s laws. 8If we follow our desires, we cannot please God. 9You are no longer ruled by your desires, but by God’s Spirit, who lives in you. People who don’t have the Spirit of Christ in them don’t belong to him.10But Christ lives in you. So you are alive because God has accepted you, even though your bodies must die because of your sins. 11 Yet God raised Jesus to life! God’s Spirit now lives in you, and he will raise you to life by his Spirit. 12My dear friends, we must not live to satisfy our desires.”
2. We must Pray about everything – nothing is to small – nothing is to big – if it is worth worrying about it is worth praying about. Do you agree?
a. You don’t focus on what you don’t want – it does not work – you refocus on what you want – by prayer and fasting.
i. Joel 1:14: “Tell the leaders and people to come together at the temple. Order them to go without eating and to pray sincerely.”
b. What did Daniel do when things got tough – Daniel 9:3 – “I turned to the Lord and pleaded with Him with prayer and fasting!”
i. Ezra said – we fasted and prayed that our God would take care of us – he heard our pray and preserved us – Group pray and fasting has power to unleash a breakthrough!
c. Pick 3 times a day for 5 min – Pray this week!
i. There is Power in this! We can do this!
1. Promote: Idea for home prayer groups.
iii. Get peace from God – only comes from connection with God through pray – fasting and a revelation from the Lord.
1. Storms raging God brings peace – its supernatural – it’s beyond natural reason – its spiritual – fasting says to God we are serious – we need this breakthrough!
iv. Fix your thoughts on Jesus – get the renewed mind!
1. Fix your thoughts on things that are true – not the lies - like pornography – listen it will not make you happy or satisfy you. It will shame you and destroy you - not to mention the girls who are trapped in sex trafficking that you are looking at.
a. Jesus died for those girls and those guys!
b. Don’t be deceived by the darkness of sin!
c. Resist the Devil and he will flee!
3. Psalm 88:9: “My eyes are dim with grief. I call to you, LORD, every day; I spread out my hands to you.”
a. The Prayer hand outline on how to pray and what to pray! (From Rick Warren)
i. Fingers on left who you should pray for?
1. Thumb – family and friends closest to your heart!
2. Index finger – the teachers and leaders in your life – they point the way and its used also for correction – pray your heart would be teachable from them.
3. Middle finger – influencers – tallest finger – pray for people who influence the world! President Trump – Congress - Governor Pritzer – no seriously!
a. We do this because it gives us an easier life.
4. Ring finger: pray for relationships
a. Friends – family – spouse – small group – church family
5. The pinky finger – I pray for myself last – not first – no selfish prayer.
ii. Fingers on right hand - I use this hand and finger to deal with “what do I pray for.”
1. Thumb: my heart – is it right with God – do you have heart issue with your spouse – your parents – with your pastors -with your bosses – with your kids.
2. Pointing finger: Priorities and schedule – If you are not doing this God is not blessing your priorities or schedules - not everything is worth doing – did you hear me?
a. Seek first the Kingdom of God and all else will be added on says the Word.
3. Middle finger: Your influence on others – my example is also in connection here!
a. Are you a good example or bad example!
4. Weakest finger – pray for the sick and the weak – elderly – children – handicapped people – mental health sickness – the poor.
5. Pinky finger: pray that God would bless your life materially – this is the last thing you do in pray by the way:
a. 1 Chronicles 4:10: “Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, “Oh that You would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.” And God granted his request.”
b. Many have not because you ask not – my God will supply all your needs in accordance with His riches and glory.
What do we need to know?
Answer: God prepares the way for a breakthrough – take note to what God is doing around you – if you have a sudden hunger for the Word yield to it God is doing something – pray – fast – cast out worry – get peace with a connection with God. Learn how to pray with your hands.
Why do we need to know this?
Answer: This is how spiritual breakthroughs come – really most any kind of breakthrough! Learn to see what God is doing – then jump aboard with Him.
What do we need to do?
Answer: We need to get into His Word – We need seek God for answers and insight – We need to let go of worry – We need to pray – using the hand model of prayer – we need to fast!
Why do they need to do this?
Answer: Doing and using these spiritual tools are the key to receiving a spiritual breakthrough individually and nationally.
Remind them of the hand illustration! See power point!
Video: Jesus culture song