Day 2 at C3 Encounters 2012 was quite a busy day, I have decided to publish my reviews of each of the messages in separate parts and blogs and not in any particular order.
Pastor Peter Paauwe – Breaking through your ceiling
Pastor Paauwe began his message by saying regardless of what you might have obtained or established, you can learn from anyone.
Then developing on the message he shared yesterday about commitment, he said, “Your breakthrough is your own responsibility.” However, that is determined by how we think about the situations we are in Proverbs 23:7 As a man thinks, so he is.
Our spirit already has the fullness of God indwelling; it is our thinking that has to change. The order to change our circumstances and see things differently, the growth has to happen in your thinking.
Your internal capacity has to grow to suit your vision, your faith and your skills. If you cannot handle small problems you are not equipped to handle larger problems.
In terms of scale, the problems are usually the same for small or large churches being able to maintain calm and peace are elements of your ability needed to handle problems and it comes with your recognising God’s commitment to you.
You stifle your growth if you think in terms of your problems; growth comes by thinking in terms of solutions, possibilities and opportunities.
Be driven by your big vision with confidence and using common-sense.
Internal ceilings and external ceilings
Don't run with the chickens; fly with the eagles.
Note: Pastor Paauwe taught in Dutch and so as he said we were at the mercy of the interpreter. I feel the use of ceiling is contextually analogous to conflict. Internal ceilings can be read to mean inner conflict and external ceilings can be read to mean external conflict.
He began to teach by saying he was going to compare and contrast two similar but also different personalities and how each reacted to situations and circumstances in their lives.
His chosen personalities were David and Saul - Saul had internal ceilings whilst David had mainly external ceilings.
How we deal with our ceilings will be determined by our Faith, our Courage and our use of Common-sense. [The Dutch word for common-sense literally translates to the way farmers do things.]
Saul and David were both were anointed and they both had prophets in their reigns Samuel for the former and Nathan latter.
Between selection and achievement
Saul was selected to be king from appearance but he had internal conflicts, he aimed to please, wanted to impress and was always seeking approval and adulation. We need to recognise that only one opinion should matter; that of God about us.
Saul had charisma and some physical presence but no character, skills or leadership ability.
David was anointed to be king with the clear distinction of not being chosen by appearance but for character and characteristics that were not immediately discernible to the eye. Then, he was still a shepherd-boy and there was where he learnt his skills.
Though it was not obvious what he could do, when the time came, the skills became not only useful, they were unveiled to the nation at a very public event.
You have to use what God has given you in talent and ability it will result in achieving something great eventually. A man’s gift makes way for him.
Seeing problems and seeing opportunity
When Saul saw Goliath he saw insurmountable problems, he did not inspire confidence and was fearful as Goliath daily threatened the armies of Israel; David even though he did not belong in the army he did not see Goliath as the looming threat, he had a different mind-set.
A man without inner conflicts always sees an opportunity and he is always ready to take on the world around him. Saul limited by the small vision of himself and very low self-esteem saw big problems around him; David’s vision was so big, he had a consuming sense of purpose and drew his strength from knowing who he was and conveyed a perspective that the armies of Israel had all the power of God to back them and lead them to victory. He did not once see Goliath as a problem.
We need to be opportunity-focused not problem-focused.
Though David’s brothers knew he was anointed to be the next king of Israel, they treated him with contempt but he refused to allow the non-recognition of his status to dissuade him from expressing the forceful truth of Goliath not being a problem.
When he was brought before Saul, Saul attempted to equip David with his armour, but David had never proved the armour, it was much bigger than him and it would have hindered him.
Be careful that you do not end up using other peoples weapons to fight your own battles, your ability to succeed can only be based on what you know, what you use and what you understand. It has to be borne of your personality and self-expression.
It is easy to be impressed with professional people but what takes you over is the size of your vision, your faith and your use of common-sense.
David had imperfect people, they were rough and ready but he worked with them, he embraced them, he loved them, he taught them, he encouraged them, he gave them opportunities and in the process he built his own army; he had good leadership skills.
Because Christ is in you, you can make the change you need - my heart must lead my head not the other way round.
If you enlarge your capacity to deal with issues, you will attract those with even more capacity to help you tackle bigger problems, circumstances and battles.
When Saul was challenged he always made excuses, he had no remorse, he was foolish and never quick to make amends. David however responded well to rebuke, he immediately recognised his errors, he had remorse, he repented, he quickly made amends, he was teachable, so God remained with him and he grew in stature and authority.
Externally and physically Saul looked okay, but he was a troubled man, serious conflicted, tormented by spirits, he was jealous, impulsive, obstinate, disobedient, always in pursuit of being honoured regardless of what he had done.
Stop making excuses, the revelation is within you. Enlarge the tent of your thinking. Isaiah 54:2.
Knowing where God is in the situation
David did not allow external circumstances to determine his limits.
Internal ceilings and inner conflicts are your responsibility, you have to deal with the issues, repent and readjust your perspective of things starting with your thinking.
External ceilings and external conflicts are also your responsibility; however, with a big vision, faith, confidence and common-sense those battles are easier to win.
I can feel dry but I am not dry, I have rivers of living water in me, the spirit dwells in me, the fullness of God is in me.
The responsibility is mine to read the bible, to meditate and to begin to see things the way God sees things about you.
God never moves ahead of you, God only takes steps as you take them, I always have to take those steps for God to move. This is the case with Joshua.
If he had not with the children of Israel marched round the walls of Jericho, the walls will still stand.
As long as you have limitations, you cannot make progress.
Keep in your rightful place for your protection
When Jonathan struck a covenant with David, he was already aware he will not succeed his father Saul to the throne, that David will be the next king of Israel. As long as Jonathan stayed with David, he was safe in the protection of God’s purpose and would have easily be honoured in the company of David.
However, Jonathan returned to fight alongside his father who had been rejected of God, he perished with his father in battle.