Change The Culture
From Focusing On Your House To Building God's House
July 14, 2019 • Pastor Wes Richards
It is time for the people of God to complete the work that God has instructed; to “build the temple, that I may take pleasure in it and be glorified.” We are called to build for Christ; to build our families, our small groups, our church body, and our church building. In this message, Pastor Wes revisits the prophetic word and scripture shared by Pastor Cesar on his previous two visits to the church. Further Scripture: Ezra 1:5-6, 2:68-69, 3:2, Zechariah 4:6-10, Matthew 6:33 Apply The Word: Are you focused on building the house of God? Does all of your best effort go to God or somewhere else? Where are your priorities? To build the house of the Lord will require that we commit our best time, money, effort, and talents to see that the cause of Christ and His Church prospers in every way. While we may be in a situation where our meeting places are ‘a ruin’, God wants us to realise the urgency to move forward in His purpose for the people of God. It’s time to change priorities to making the building of the house of the Lord your first priority. Take note of anything that has been given priority in your time, money, effort, and talents and note how you can give of these areas to God’s Kingdom. Share what areas you can give, help, or serve with your small group leader and take action today!
From Human Power To The Power Of The Holy Spirit
Pentecost Sunday 2019 • June 9, 2019 • Jon & Hayley Stevens
The Holy Spirit is a great promise from God for His people. When we receive the Holy Spirit, all of us will be fully equipped to move in the power of God and see incredible fruit in our lives and ministry. In this message, we look back to the first Pentecost and see what we can expect when the Holy Spirit comes in power upon us. Further Scripture: Acts 4:8, 4:13, 4:33, 5:12, 5:28, 6:3, 1 Corinthians 2:4, 4:20, Luke 11:11-13 Apply The Word: Are you filled with the Holy Spirit? Do you know and believe God’s promises to offer all believers to be filled Holy Spirit? God promises the Holy Spirit to all people (Acts 2:4, 17-18) – that includes you! To see great things in our life and walk with God, we must be completely filled with the Holy Spirit. To be filled, we must repent and die to our old way of relying on human power. We must hunger and ask for the Holy Spirit (Luke 11:11-13). We must receive the Holy Spirit. Spend time in prayer and worship as an individual and as a group readying yourself to be filled with the Holy Spirit. Repent for the past, ask for the Holy Spirit, and wait for God’s Spirit to fill you. Do you see the supernatural in your life? Do you feel equipped to minister to the multitudes? Do you expect great power to move in and through you? When we are filled with the Spirit, we will see great fruit. Read Acts 2-6 (with some specific references in ‘Further Scripture’ above) and see what the apostles achieved after being filled with the Spirit. Reset your expectations and ask God to give you big dreams and use you in a big way to share the gospel, expand the Kingdom of God, and see miracles in your life and those who come into contact with you.
From Finding Followers to Forming Leaders
June 2, 2019 • Pastor Wes Richards
When people are won to the Lord, we must take care in making sure that we are forming them into leaders, not just followers and attendees. Jesus formed his 12 disciples into leaders and after He went to heaven, these men spread the gospel around the world. Further Scripture: Mark 1:19-20, Matthew 9:9-13, Mark 3:14, Matthew 10:1, Matthew 9:36, Matthew 10:8, Luke 15:3, Luke 7:3, John 13:12-16, Luke 19:10 Apply The Word: In the church there is a difference between people who say that they are followers of Jesus and those who are his committed ambassadors and leaders. Who would you identify yourself as? Do you have a "what can I get?" mentality or a "what can I give?" mentality? Are you a disciple? When you are a disciple you can make disciples. When we allow ourselves to be formed as a disciple, then we can reproduce this and train up more disciples. The disciples were not perfect people but Jesus formed them in love, in life and in leadership. We must be like Jesus in the way he formed his disciples. Are you focused on gathering a team and training disciples? Referencing Luke 15:3-7, are you willing to go after the one? Jesus came to save people and paid the ultimate sacrifice on the Cross of Calvary. Ask God to give you a fresh revelation every day. Jesus also served his disciples. How do you serve others at home, at work? Do you have a humble servant attitude? As leaders we must reap what we sow, because the fruit will bear in the people we lead.
From Fragmented Families To Fruitful Families
May 26, 2019 • Pastor James Richards
To see fruitful families, we need to change the culture. We must build up our families and homes and build the church as a family and home; all centred on the rock of Jesus Christ and the Word of God. Further Scripture: Deuteronomy 11:11-14, Genesis 1:26-28, Genesis 12:1-3, 2 Timothy 1:5 Romans 8:15, Revelation 22:17, Psalm 68:6, Psalm 25:16, Philippians 4:8, Hebrews 11:6, Joshua 24:15 Key Points: 1. By Establishing The Word As The Foundation And Framework Of The Home (v18-20) // 2. By Winning Over Hearts And Minds (v18) // 3. By The Power Of Christ-Like Example (v18-19) // 4. By Cultivating An Atmosphere Of Faith (v19) // 5. By Putting Your House In Order (v18-20) Apply The Word: What are the foundations and frameworks of your family? Do you build on past experiences, emotions, or scripture? What place does the Word have in your family and home? Note how things happen in your family and what drives the direction or decisions of your family. Make a plan of what you need to change and build in your family so that every word, decision, and action is established on the Word of God. How is direction given and received in your family/home? What is the default atmosphere in your home and what is permitted to happen in your family? Whether you are a parent, sibling, or child, as a follower of Christ you have the responsibility to model Christ-like living. What you model (prayer, reading the Word, worshipping, faith, obedience) and what you permit (sin, unrighteousness, or rebellion) will define the direction of your family. List the cultures that manifest in your family and how well you are modelling the key points #1-5 above. Compare the attitudes, experiences, habits, and routines of your family to the bar set in our key passage and the list set out in Philippians 4:8. Decide today how to put the five culture-changing actions from this message into action.
From Relying On Yourself To Depending On God
May 19, 2019 • Mike and Natasha Airey
We live in a world of self-help and self-reliance, but we need to pursue a lifestyle of complete dependence upon God if we want to see conquest in our lives. When we stop striving and start depending on God, we will see a great harvest of lasting fruit. Let’s learn from the Apostle Paul, who had every qualification to rely on himself but instead depended on God. Further Scripture: Proverbs 6:6-9, Psalm 127:1, Philippians 3:3-7, 2 Corinthians 3:4-7, Jeremiah 29:11, Job 1:21, Philippians 4:11-12, 2 Corinthians 12:9-10, Acts 1:8, Isaiah 40:29-31, 2 Corinthians 11:23-30, 2 Corinthians 4:7-9, Ephesians 6:13, Philippians 4:13, Acts 4:8-14 Apply The Word: Do you rely on God or rely on yourself? Do you think you are qualified (or unqualified) by what you have achieved or what family you were born into? Compare the scriptures that show how the Apostle Paul was well aware of both his strengths (Philippians 3:3-7) which he considered loss (v7) and his weaknesses (2 Corinthians 11:23-30) in which he boasted (v30). If you have allowed pride in your life, you must repent and come to the cross. If you have allowed weakness to drag you down and intimidate you, you must choose instead to depend on God to make you strong (2 Corinthians 12:9-10). Like Paul, we can learn to live above our circumstances by depending on God in every season (Philippians 4:11-12). Do you feel pressure when you share your faith? Do you get intimidated by the context of your audience or the lack of your training? In Acts 4:5-13, the rulers and authorities were astonished by the gospel witness of Peter and John. They saw they were untrained but they also saw the evidence that they had been with Jesus. Spend time with the Lord and allow His Spirit to minister strength to you. The more time you have with Jesus, the more confident you will be to share your faith.
From Sowing To Reaping
May 12, 2019 • Pastor Wes Richards
Sowing and reaping is one of God’s great universal principles. We will reap in the manner we sow, and in abundance. We need to make sure we are sowing in the right way, and when we are, we need to understand that God has prepared us to reap a great harvest. Further Scripture: Job 4:8, Romans 6:22, Galatians 6:8-9, Hebrews 12:15, Ephesians 4:31-32, Proverbs 18:21, Ephesians 4:29-30, 2 Corinthians 9:6-8, Hosea 8:7, Matthew 13:8, Hosea 10:12, Jonah 3:5-10, John 4:35, Mark 4:29, Revelation 14:5, Hebrews 4:12 Apply The Word: What do you sow? What manner do you invest in your lifestyle, your spirit & attitude, your words, your finances? Have you sown plenty of good seed or bad? We must understand that those who sow trouble reap it, while those who sow in the Spirit reap great fruit (Galatians 6:8-9). We must get rid of all bad roots (Ephesians 4:31-32), and be determined to break up the ground that has been unfruitful to sow righteousness (Hosea 10:12). Look at your life and repent of any bad seed that you have sown. Rebuke any bad seed that has been sown in your life by previous curses, experiences or wounds. Apply the blood of Jesus over your life to redeem you from every curse of the enemy. Determine to sow in righteousness from today onwards. Do you constantly work to bear fruit without seeing a harvest? Do you believe the harvest time is now? God is the Lord of the harvest, and He is the only one who can produce fruit in and through us. Read Galatians 6:9, Hosea 10:12, Jonah 3:5-10, John 4:35, Mark 4:29, Revelation 14:15. Understand that when God calls the harvest time, nothing will stop His plans. Make a stand to act in faith in every area; in your personal life, family life, and ministry, and expect God to provide the harvest. As you have sown good seed, trust God to take you into a season of reaping great blessing.
From Giving Enough To Giving The Best
May 5, 2019 • Pastor Adriana Richards
The culture of the church in the UK may have once been to give ‘just enough’ but we are pursuing a culture of giving the best. We want to be able to say, like David; "I will not sacrifice to the Lord my God [what] cost me nothing.” Apply The Word: When you give God your time, focus, or finances, do you give what costs, or do you often give only what's easy? Do you have a heart of sacrifice towards God? Consider your heart towards God and your attitude towards giving and serving. Be honest with yourself as you ask whether your life is fully sacrificed to God, and acknowledge where you have placed limits to your surrender. In those areas; be it time, finances, lifestyle, ask God to bring a new faith that when you entrust things fully to His hands, He will redeem them and make them fruitful.
Creating A Culture Of Faith
April 28, 2019 • Pastor James Richards
Our society has a culture of doubt, cynicism, and pride that is much like Thomas’ initial reaction to Jesus’ resurrection. We can learn much from Jesus’ discipleship of Thomas in this situation and His teaching that blessing comes when we see with eyes of faith. Further Scripture: Romans 8:28, Jeremiah 17:9, Luke 6:45, Romans 10:9, Mark 9:17-27, Hebrews 11:1, Luke 1:37-38, Romans 8:26-36 Apply The Word: What is your reaction to a challenge of faith? Is your immediate reaction self-focused, stubborn, negative, proud? Do you put conditions on your faith? Faith comes when you renounce pride and trust your life into God’s hands completely. Read some scriptures that reinforce the sovereignty of God, starting with Luke 1:37 and Romans 8:26-36. Spend time in worship, recognising God for who He is and allowing Him to minister to you and soften you so that you can submit fully to Him. Is your confidence in a personal Saviour or do you have a distant relationship with God? When God is real to you He will be your confidence and your hope, not a story of someone else’s hope. Instead of Thomas’ doubt of what he had not seen, speak in the manner he did when he had met Jesus for himself; “My Lord and My God” (John 20:28). Recognise your unbelief and ask God to fill you with faith, just like Mark 9:24. Do your words bear evidence of faith? Do you regularly visualise victory or tend to expect defeat? Do your words, thoughts, and actions reflect trust in the Lord? Doubt will manifest itself in action. Doubt isn’t simply a lack of faith, but a decision to act contrary to faith. Take stock of your recent thought life, your frequent language choices, and how you process big decisions. Note whether each of these things is driven by faith, fear, pride, or doubt. Where it’s not faith, make a plan to change.
From Pride To Humility
April 7, 2019 • Pastor Wes Richards
When God brings a new level of humility, everything changes. When you move from pride to humility in your life, marriage, and family, you will see great blessing. When churches are marked by humility not pride, we will help to create the conditions for great spiritual revival and reformation in society. Further Scripture: Proverbs 6:17, Luke 1:52, 2 Chronicles 26:16, Daniel 4:29-32, 2 Chronicles 7:14, James 4:6 Apply The Word: Does pride have a root in any part of your life, home, or family? Do you turn a blind eye to the issues that need addressing or do you humbly bring them to God? We need to honestly acknowledge the issues in our lives in order to deal with them. Take stock of your spiritual, emotional, and mental state and address any unforgiveness, bitterness, wounds, pride, religious/nationalistic/intellectual/logical strongholds. Now make note of how to get healed; how you will take each of the issues on your list to God in prayer, and where a leader can help you to overcome things which you have not been able to conquer alone. When God brings direction, correction, or instruction, are you quick to follow or quick to argue? Let us not wait for God to humble us but let us humble ourselves before God. Recognise where you have been proud and repent of that pride. Say sorry to God. Say sorry to others. It’s time to bow down with a soft and teachable heart. It’s time to receive new grace and favour from God. Allow Him to minister to you today.
From Limitation To Multiplication
Part 2 • March 17, 2019 • Pastor Wes Richards
The God of the Bible is the God of miraculous multiplication. In order to see the promised multiplication, we need to follow the model of Jesus and allow Him to build in us a lifestyle of faith where we are ready for multiplication. Further Scripture: Matthew 14:13-21, Luke 9:10-17, John 6:1-15, Matthew 14:11-14 Apply The Word: Do you have a lifestyle of faith or logic? Have you allowed circumstances to define your or do you always allow the Lord to lead you in spite of what you go through? Read Mark 6 and Matthew 14. Consider the context of Jesus’ life as He faced bereavement and was in a time of mourning and then consider His actions and character as He performed this miracle. Now look at the key steps to multiplication that were shared on Sunday. Consider how your character measures up to the standard set in this passage and approach God in prayer to pursue the miracle of multiplication in your own life, your family, and your ministry.
Creating A Culture Of Courage
March 10, 2019 • Jon & Hayley Stevens
You must face the major giants in your life with courage and the mindset that you are a victor. Each one of us is called to do great things like Moses, we must be courageous in thoughts and actions. When we change, everything around us changes. Further Scripture: Joshua 1 Apply The Word: How do you face challenges? Do you approach them with a victim mentality or a victor mentality? Do you truly believe that you are an overcomer? The Bible says that through Christ we can overcome, our test can become our testimony, we have to be courageous and not shrink back when challenges come. We cannot change anything by living small, we have a big God, so therefore need to believe for big conquest. Are you confident in the promises God has given you? Do you let what the world or the word of God guide your life? To see breakthrough and conquest, you have to stand firm on the word of God. The word is you’re authority, your guiding principle, your guarantee and you power supply. It is easy to receive a promise, but then when challenges come, fear can cause us to forget the unshakeable word of God. In Joshua 1, God repeatedly tells Joshua to be strong and courageous. Be bold and believe for total victory, believe and trust that everything God has promised will come to pass.
Creating A Culture Of Faithfulness
March 3, 2019 • Mike and Natasha Airey
We live in a world of unfaithfulness but are called to be a model of faithfulness that will bring change to our families, communities, and nations. Listen to this message for three steps to creating a culture of faithfulness. Further Scripture: John 12:1-6, Matthew 26:14-16, Luke 22:3-6, 47-50, Matthew 26: 36-42. Acts 1:15-22 Apply The Word: Do you allow any judgement, criticism, self-interest, or pretence in your life? Does your standard of faithfulness change under intense pressure or difficulty? Read the passages in John 12:1-6, Matthew 26:14-16, Luke 22:3-6, 47-50 and see how Judas allowed roots of unfaithfulness in his life that ultimately led to the betrayal of Jesus. Recognise the great consequences of unfaithfulness and then compare this to Jesus’ character of faithfulness as shown in Matthew 26:36-42. The faithfulness of Jesus led to our freedom! Take stock of your character and humbly come before God in prayer to uproot any and all unfaithfulness and pursue a lifestyle and culture of complete faithfulness. Do you surround yourself with faithful people? Do you allow people to model unfaithfulness around you or do you set the standard where you are? A completed team of faithful people presents an atmosphere where the Holy Spirit can move and make miracles as shown in Acts 1-2. Make a stand to be part of and build a team of people faithful in; marriage and family, talents and abilities, finances, prayer, sharing the gospel, following and leading. Above all, be determined to be part of and build a team of people who are faithful to the Lord.
Pursuing A Lifestyle Of Surrender
February 24, 2019 • Pastor James Richards
We are at a pivotal moment in the church where God is preparing to do something amazing. If we want to be part of the work that God is doing, we need to surrender everything in our lives and instead pursue God’s will. Further Scripture: Psalm 121:1-4, Ephesians 4:17-19, 2 Corinthians 12:9, Matthew 16:25, Proverbs 4:18, Luke 9:23, Hebrews 12:5-6, Proverbs 3:11-12, Proverbs 5:11-14, Proverbs 13:18, Psalm 94:11-14, Romans 12:1-2, Matthew 6:10, John 3:30, John 6:38 Apply The Word: Do you fight to do things your way or do you have peace and trust to let go and say ‘not my will but your will be done’? We need to surrender fully to God even in face of ‘light and momentary troubles’ (2 Corinthians 4:16-18). Read the key passage for this week and see how Jesus fought in prayer to surrender His will to the Father. If Jesus had to pray this prayer of surrender three times, how much more must we. Spend time in passionate and heartfelt prayer to surrender your will and ways to God. What are you watching for? What gains your attention and focus? Are you watching in prayer or are you watching your TV, sports, bank account, problems? Even in our times of trouble we must ‘stay and watch’ with the Lord. Take a look at your life and what has your focus and attention. If it’s a worry or weakness, allow the Lord to replace it with His strength and faith. If it’s a distraction or sin, make a change in your life to remove everything that hinders you from a lifestyle of surrender and sensitivity to the Holy Spirit. Decide today to watch with the Lord, to prioritise time in His presence; speaking with Him, hearing from His Word, and being still in the presence of God. Wait on Him and see as He renews your strength.
From Limitation To Multiplication
Part 1 • February 17, 2019 • Pastor Wes Richards
The world often sees limitation as normal, but God sees multiplication as normal. We need to change the culture in our lives and the church in order to experience multiplication in every area of our lives, families, and ministry. We're very sorry that the podcast is unavailable for this week. Please take a look at the preaching notes for a recap of the message and how to apply it to your life. Further Scripture: Genesis 12:2-3, Genesis 15:4-5, Genesis 17:5-7, Genesis 26:3-5, Genesis 28:12, 2 Corinthians 8:9, 2 Corinthians 9:10, Luke 6:38, 2 Corinthians 9:6, Luke 5:4-11, Acts 4:4, Acts 6:7, Ephesians 3:20-21 Apply The Word: What is the ‘normal’ state of your life – limitation or multiplication? God’s normal is always multiplication. Read the original promises of multiplication repeated to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; Genesis 12:2-3, Genesis 15:4-5, Genesis 17:5-7, Genesis 26:3-5, Genesis 28:12. Spend time reading and praying through this scripture and allow God to minister to your heart and mind that He is a God who wants to multiply everything you have in your life. Once you have this understanding, you need to change the culture in your life; stop worrying, start listening to God, and be receptive and obedient to His direction. Do you attempt great things for God and invest in the Kingdom of God? Do you expect the seeds that you sow to reap a great harvest? Review your investments; where you spend your time, money, and effort. Check the state of your heart and in a new way seek to invest in the Kingdom; in your family, your disciples, and in your giving. Once you have taken stock of your investment, get rid of all doubts, raise your sights, enlarge your vision, and see that this is the time of great harvest. Read Ephesians 3:20-21 and give glory to God for all He has already done. Ask God to make you into good soil and to bring great fruit out of that soil.
Regaining Your Cutting Edge
February 10, 2019 • Pastor James Richards
To regain our cutting edge and move forward, we must recognise that we need to go back to the beginning; back to God's original design for our lives. We must receive and listen to the word and instruction given, and apply it to our everyday lives. Further Scripture: Genesis 1:27-29, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Matthew 13:22, Ephesians 1:7, Proverbs 4:23, 1 Corinthians 10:12, Psalm 51:5, Isaiah 53:6, Romans 12:1-2, Isaiah 55:11, Proverbs 4:26 Apply The Word: What have you dropped? Can you identify the points in your life where you have let the 'axe'head' fall and lost your cutting edge? We can be busy serving and going things for God but if we are not careful we can lose our cutting edge. We must go back and remember the encounters we have had with God, the promises He has given us, the calling for our lives. Don’t drop your progress, reading the word and putting It into action. Don’t drop the Holy Spirit, don't drop God's wisdom, don’t drop your grace. Read Psalm 51:7-12, we need to lives of obedience and worship and lay everything down for God like David did. This way we can regain our cutting edge, ask God to reveal this to you in your prayer time this week and lay everything down to Him. Have you received the word in your spirit? Are you hearing the word and putting it into practice? You need to make a decision to not only hear the word, but receive the word and then take action and apply it to your life. The disciple in 2 Kings had to hear the word and respond to the prophet. Ask group to write down the following: 1. Spiritual life, 2. Personal life, 3. Family life, 4. Calling, 5. Ministry, 6. Finances, 7. Business. The disciple had to pick up and regain the axe-head, what do you need to pick up and regain in these areas? Spend time praying into these, we must take action and go back to the beginning to regain what we have lost.