Is Life Still Hard When You Follow Jesus? | Real Encounters Week 5

Following Jesus promises us a new life. But what does that look like, and will your life actually be better?

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    The Jesus myth.
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    A pilgrimage to the most controversial places on earth,
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    investigating ancient stories of Jesus,
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    separating the myth from the truth
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    and discovering what it means for you today.
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    The third season of Real Encounters with God.
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    All new on location in Israel.
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    New places,
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    new people,
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    new encounters.
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    Real encounters with God: The Jesus Myth.
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    Still at home.
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    My name is Brian Tome, Pastor of Crossroads Church.
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    Before we get to Israel, I'm gong to let you know,
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    we're doing something a little different,
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    we're experimenting.
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    We're trying to do things shorter because
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    I think our attention spans are a bit different
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    when we're doing things digitally.
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    We'll still have worship and all kinds of stuff
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    that's going to helpful today.
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    We're going to try something that's a little bit shorter.
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    You know, there's a myth that persists and that is
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    when Jesus comes into your life, life gets easier.
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    It doesn't necessarily.
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    Just because God is in your life doesn't mean
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    everything is sugar plums and unicorns
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    and all that kind of stuff.
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    Well, interestingly enough though,
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    in the first early days after Jesus's resurrection,
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    things were looking great for the disciples.
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    There was a kind of glow around them
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    and then everything hits the fan.
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    That's what we're gong to look at today
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    in this episode of Real Encounters.
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    We're going to start at the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem,
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    one of the most tense places in the entire region.
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    When you hear of violence happening,
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    very frequently, it happens right here.
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    I'm outside of the holy city of Jerusalem,
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    specifically right outside Damascus Gate,
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    one of the entrances into the old city of Jerusalem.
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    And this place is alive. It's bustling.
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    All different kinds of people here.
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    It's the way it actually was in Jesus's time;
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    where there was a gate, there was activity.
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    People were there hanging around,
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    especially right after the resurrection,
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    which is what we celebrate at Easter,
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    it would have been buzzing, man.
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    People are hearing this crazy news
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    if somebody came back from the dead first --
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    first somebody died who we all respected,
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    who was a miracle worker.
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    Then we He came back from the dead.
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    People are blown away.
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    I know it sounds crazy for you and I to believe
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    that Jesus actually came back from the dead.
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    But I want you -- I want you to imagine what would happen
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    if people you knew saw Him, if people you knew told you
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    that He had actually come back from the dead.
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    This is actually what's happening in the moments
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    after the resurrection of Christ.
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    The Book of Acts, Chapter 6:7-8, it says:
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    So priests believe, people who days earlier
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    may have been opposed Him, they might have actually
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    seen Him come back from the dead or they knew somebody who did.
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    I mean, just think about yourself.
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    What if your neighbor, somebody you respected
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    or somebody who does your taxes or an attorney friend
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    or your kid's school teacher said, "I saw this guy Jesus,
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    He came back from the dead. I'm telling you, I saw it."
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    You'd probably go, "OK, maybe not crazy.
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    Maybe there's something here."
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    There was power taking place. Crazy things were happening.
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    Healings were happening. The city was abuzz.
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    In the midst of that buzz,
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    there's one guy who was especially bold.
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    His name was Stephen.
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    Stephen was declaring that Jesus is the Messiah.
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    He's the answer to their problems.
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    He's the key to eternity.
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    And not everybody likes this.
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    People are actually a bit upset with him
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    and they actually drag him outside the city,
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    outside of a gate that might have not looked too much like this
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    into where all the people were and they stone him.
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    We're talking about blood.
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    We're talking about rocks hitting you in the jaw,
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    breaking your jaw, knocking you out.
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    I can't imagine what it would look like or feel like
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    to have people gathering and pelting you.
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    And when that would happen, everyone would come around
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    because it was causing a scene.
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    Let's actually read what took place in the Book of Acts.
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    So the people who don't believe,
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    don't like what he's saying, they stop up their ears
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    and they run at him. (sound effect)
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    They run at him and they stone him.
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    While they are stoning him, his response is unbelievable.
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    Before I tell you more about his response.
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    I don't know if you felt this way or not.
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    Very few of us have ever gotten rocks hurled at us.
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    I hope not anyway.
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    But all of us have felt this tension that Stephen is in.
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    Easter just happened. Isn't Easter supposed to be happy?
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    Whoo! Happy, happy Easter. I love Easter.
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    Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful.
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    It is. It is wonderful, but it doesn't last very long.
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    The power is out.
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    Unexplainable things are happening.
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    People's lives are changing, but it's not all downhill.
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    These are tough, tough times.
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    You might feel that way.
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    You might have received Christ
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    and you might have had the impression that,
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    "Well, that just means my life is going to be easy now.
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    That just means that whenever I pray for something,
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    That just means that I'm immune to normal difficulties."
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    Right? No. No, to be clear,
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    when difficulties come when you have Christ,
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    you have a peace that passes understanding.
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    There is a strength you can tap into.
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    And also, to be clear,
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    I believe I have less problems in my life,
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    because I think that God is shielding me from things
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    that I wouldn't have been shielded from before.
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    Maybe I'm making better choices as well.
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    I think my life is better, but I want to be really clear,
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    I have a lot of problems, and so do all of us do.
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    I filmed most of this back in February,
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    so when I was talking about us all having problems,
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    I had no idea what was coming over the past few months.
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    But it's even more important right now.
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    Easter, the joy of Easter eventually wears off
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    and we're left with problems.
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    We have a guy on our crew right now
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    after we're done with the shoot we're taking him to the airport
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    because he just got word that his child,
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    his first child has been miscarried
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    and his wife is at home alone.
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    It's supposed to be their first child,
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    it was supposed to be their first child.
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    That shouldn't happen to Derrick and his wife.
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    That shouldn't -- that shouldn't happen.
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    Jesus should protect them from that,
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    especially if he's in Israel filming
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    and trying to push forward the agenda of our God.
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    But yet he's not immune, neither of us,
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    none of us are immune to medical diagnosis that go bad.
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    None of us are immune to our neighbors not liking us.
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    None of us are immune to being laid off
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    or having too much work on our plate
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    or being right sized or not being able to have a child
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    or having a divorce or whatever it is.
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    Problems are real and they're with us.
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    The question is, how will you be in the middle of the problem?
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    Steven has a problem, he's getting stoned
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    and he drops to his knees.
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    He drops to his knees and he's not going to recant faith.
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    In fact, he doesn't just not recant his faith
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    while he's on his knees being pelted
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    he asked God to forgive people who were stoning him.
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    Who does that? What kind of person does that?
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    I'll tell what kind of person does that:
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    a person who understands power,
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    that's the kind of person who does that.
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    And he's not the only one. He's just the first.
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    He's the very first martyr, Stephen, is.
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    All of the early disciples were martyred.
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    Every last line except for one, John.
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    John has it real good.
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    He dies isolated on the island of Patmos.
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    Ok, quick fact check.
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    John was exiled to the island of Patmos
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    where he wrote the Book of Revelation,
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    but then he actually died in Ephesus.
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    I've seen his tomb.
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    Sorry, guys, I can't bat a thousand.
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    Believer after believer after believer gets persecuted.
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    Believer after believer after believer meets murder.
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    Believe after believer has difficulty
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    and yet they power through it.
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    Why do they power through it?
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    They power through it because
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    there's something different inside of them.
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    There's something different that God is doing
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    in and through them.
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    We cannot promise you that your life is going to be easy.
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    It will not be easy.
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    I can tell you the God will be near
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    and I can tell you there is a power
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    that's available to you that transcends your problems.
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    That's what we're investigating today.
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    There's a classic misconception that
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    if God's involved in your life, you will not have pain.
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    The truth is that you and I will have pain,
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    but that God can be present in the midst of our pain.
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    My friend Kyle caught up with a couple
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    in our Lexington community that has that very story to tell.
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    - Hey, we're in Lexington, Kentucky, with the Sharps.
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    This is Jeremy, Katie and Brayden.
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    Here to hear your story about what God's been doing
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    in your lives for the last few months.
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    - So I had a great pregnancy, no complications or anything.
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    Brayden was born and he was having some G.I. issues.
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    He has a rare genetic condition.
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    - His body is unable to take in
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    a full day's worth of food on its own.
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    In that state, he can't grow on his own
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    without some additional help.
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    And the other big part of it is he has
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    profound hearing loss, so he's deaf in both ears.
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    - And so we were UK NICU for three weeks.
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    He was just not doing well, just losing weight.
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    - They ended up doing one test and basically
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    after that one test, they're like, "Hey,
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    we kind of capped out our capabilities here at UK.
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    The best thing we can do now is send you
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    up to Cincinnati Children's where they have, you know,
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    sub, sub, subspecialists for everything.
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    It was right before Christmas and, you know,
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    flu season has been crazy,
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    so there were no beds available at Cincinnati Children's.
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    My kind of low point was about 2 or 3 in the morning,
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    a week and a half into just waiting,
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    not knowing when we're going to get a room
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    up at Cincinnati.
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    Katie was holding him. He was screaming.
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    I'm sitting in bed, like, so angry.
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    Like, what are we doing here?
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    Why is this happening to us? Like, this is ridiculous.
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    And I was just like one of those times, like, you know,
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    people say God speaks, but for me,
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    it was this this feeling I couldn't get out.
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    Like, you need to wake up now and you need to get up
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    and you need to get up and hold Brayden.
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    I just held him and said, "God, if you're here,
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    you don't need to heal him.
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    Like, I just know you're in the room."
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    Next thing you know, Kati's like,
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    "Jeremy, look at Brayden."
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    And I was like, "What?"
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    He was just screaming
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    and he just completely stopped and he just smiled at me.
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    And that was the moment for me when is like,
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    "Hey, I got you and you have to rely on Me."
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    - What's happened since then? Did you go to Cincinnati?
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    - Yeah. So we ended up being in Cincinnati for a month
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    where they have more GI specialists.
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    We finally got him to a place
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    where he could gain weight at home.
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    And so that was quite a big transition
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    with all this new hardware on him
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    and all these new things that we have to do at home
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    to just make sure that he can grow.
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    - I feel like in nearly everyone's life,
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    when you follow Jesus, you hit this moment where you go,
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    "You know, I kind of thought that having You in my life,
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    God, would make more things just perfect.
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    I get to avoid some of just the crap and the problems."
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    And then you don't.
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    How do you get to a place of hope and God?
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    Where are you? Where are you now with that?
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    - For me I can just think of countless doctors
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    standing in front of me, just shaking my head
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    and not having any answers for us.
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    I feel like those days hope is really hard.
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    But we're home with Brayden and we're here,
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    so that gives me hope.
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    - And I think one of the big things we've learned
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    is sometimes there's just not a shortcut.
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    And sometimes you just have to go through the trial.
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    We've run ourselves empty,
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    and that's when the presence of God
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    has actually been able to show up in our lives,
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    because, you know, we've done everything
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    we know how to do within our own capability.
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    And it's not enough. It's not going to fix Brayden.
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    You don't know what you're going to get in the future,
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    and so there's there's no way that we can shoulder
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    the weight of what could potentially happen
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    for Brayden in the future.
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    And so it's forced us to just be here
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    and like just hang out with him in the moment
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    and just enjoy being with him right now,
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    which is the first time I've ever been able to do that.
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    - Powerful.
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    You do not have to go through struggles alone, just like
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    Jeremy and Katie haven't gone through their struggle alone.
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    We want to be with you.
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    You can go to Crossroads.net and we will chat with you
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    and pray for you right now with whatever you're dealing with.
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    Those of us who are part of Crossroads,
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    we love seeing the mission of Crossroads go forward.
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    And we love the mission of Crossroads going forward
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    in our own hearts, in our own lives.
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    One of the ways that happens is generosity.
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    We're a tithing church.
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    When God blesses us with something,
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    we want to give Him the first 10% back to His work.
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    And if you're building and growing towards that,
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    that's amazing too.
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    We love seeing spiritual growth here.
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    You go to Crossroads.net/give to honor God with your generosity.
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    As we've seen the classic misconception of
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    if there is pain, God must not be real.
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    That classic misconception is utterly wrong
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    and utterly unhealthy.
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    We've seen that in Jeremy and Katie's story.
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    But there is another critical thing,
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    not just that God is with us and can be with us in our pain,
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    but that this story will ultimately end well.
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    In the Book of Isaiah, there's a prophecy
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    that's written 2700 years ago
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    that has relevance for our life today.
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    Isaiah 35:1-2:
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    Let's go back to Israel and see firsthand
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    a Bible prophecy that has come true.
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    To do this, we're going to get my friend Tsuriel.
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    He's a Bible scholar in Israel, tour guide,
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    a hotel owner, a former Israeli special forces,
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    and all around really, really good, dude.
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    And before we do, I just want you to know
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    that I know when we look at stuff in the Middle East,
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    it is incredibly complex politically.
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    And with all different people groups there,
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    there is significant pain to all different kinds of folks
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    who are not Israelis there.
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    I don't want to minimize that, but I do want us to see
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    there's something special that God is doing
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    in this modern day land that we know as Israel.
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    So, we're walking inside of a fulfilled prophecy right now.
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    - Yes, we are. We are here at the Judean desert.
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    It's one of those dry places in the land of Israel.
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    You know, we have about 60% of the size of Israel
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    is a dry area, down in the south, the Negev.
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    And when you look around, you see that many places
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    would look like a desert.
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    - Like this, a desert.
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    - Yes. This is how a desert is supposed to look like. Right?
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    - Yeah. I think Mark Twain said when he came
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    and visited here that this wasn't fit for a camel.
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    - Yeah, it's true. Mark Twain, it's a great book.
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    He was here during the 19th century
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    and he came to this so-called land of the Bible, you know.
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    And I don't know exactly what was his faith like
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    from a Christian point of view.
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    - He was not a Christian. His wife was.
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    - OK. He knew the Bible very well.
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    And you see that he's disappointed.
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    He thinks that he will see all those beautiful sights
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    as is describing the scriptures.
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    And then suddenly he comes and it's all dry
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    and empty and thorns and bushes.
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    And he's like, "What is that?"
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    But, you know, this is how the land of Israel
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    was looking like for centuries.
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    And now, you know, after the independence, 1948,
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    things changed.
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    - Yeah, we go from that and this
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    to huge portions of your country being lush.
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    - Yeah. Look at that. You know, look at that.
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    If I would tell any child,
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    "Please draw me how a desert would look like,"
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    no one would have such a thing.
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    It's all green. You see all those palm trees growing,
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    all over dates and so on.
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    It's because of a system, you know, that was developed,
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    the irrigation system with drip.
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    And you have the possibility now also to create life
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    where you have death, basically, desert.
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    - Crazy. This was invented by you, I understand,
  • 00:18:33
    the drip irrigation, your Israeli people.
  • 00:18:34
    It's really nuts that your country, which was --
  • 00:18:38
    has such a difficult, rugged terrain,
  • 00:18:41
    is the only country that is actually growing
  • 00:18:44
    more trees than harvesting trees in the country right now
  • 00:18:47
    or excuse me, in the world.
  • 00:18:49
    It's quite a stunning reversal.
  • 00:18:51
    - Yeah. I would say that thank God for His grace,
  • 00:18:54
    you know, and the fact that He blesses this region,
  • 00:18:57
    this region can look as a desert.
  • 00:18:59
    I mean, the potential is to be a desert,
  • 00:19:01
    but with the grace of God,
  • 00:19:02
    with the wisdom that He gave people, I believe so,
  • 00:19:04
    this is now you see that also a dry area can flourish.
  • 00:19:08
    - Prophecies being fulfilled; it's a real thing.
  • 00:19:16
    The track record of the Bible is abundantly clear and proven.
  • 00:19:21
    It said that a Messiah would come and He's come.
  • 00:19:23
    It said that the desert would bloom and they are blooming.
  • 00:19:28
    This means no matter what crisis,
  • 00:19:29
    no matter what tribulation,
  • 00:19:31
    no matter what difficulty you're facing right now,
  • 00:19:34
    there is a hope, a hope that's coming, a hope that's real.
  • 00:19:37
    Romans 12:12 says that we should rejoice in hope,
  • 00:19:43
    persevere in the midst of tribulation
  • 00:19:46
    and be constant in prayer.
  • 00:19:49
    We can take hope that your story right now
  • 00:19:53
    is not the end of the story.
  • 00:20:05
    [music: God of the Breakthrough]
  • 00:20:07
    - Hey, my name's Justin.
  • 00:20:09
    - My name's Robbie.
  • 00:20:10
    - I'm Austin.
  • 00:20:11
    - We're with Crossroads Music and we're talking
  • 00:20:14
    about this new song that we made
  • 00:20:16
    called God of the Breakthrough.
  • 00:20:18
    There are moments when life seems to be cruising along just fine
  • 00:20:24
    and then all of a sudden it feels like something hits
  • 00:20:27
    and just knocks you off course.
  • 00:20:29
    That was -- that was actually what happened.
  • 00:20:31
    We had scheduled a day of writing.
  • 00:20:34
    Maybe we were gonna write a song about Grace.
  • 00:20:36
    - Yeah. And Justin, Justin brought it up.
  • 00:20:38
    - Yeah.
  • 00:20:39
    - But we were getting ready to write and we got an email
  • 00:20:42
    saying that our executive pastor, Darren,
  • 00:20:46
    had had just a massive heart attack.
  • 00:20:50
    And, you know, it was in that moment where we were --
  • 00:20:52
    just we had a plan and then, bam, we hit the wall.
  • 00:20:56
    - I mean, our community had been through a bunch of stuff.
  • 00:20:59
    We had one of our senior leaders battling cancer
  • 00:21:02
    and other staff member's wife battling cancer.
  • 00:21:05
    Our personal like things going on.
  • 00:21:07
    And we get that email and it felt like the punch in the gut.
  • 00:21:13
    I mean, it did.
  • 00:21:14
    It just felt like what else could happen?
  • 00:21:17
    - There's a decision like for me whether or not
  • 00:21:20
    to get angry or get hurt or to like be shell shocked.
  • 00:21:28
    - In that moment when we were sitting here,
  • 00:21:30
    we were writing, I was like,
  • 00:21:32
    "Guys, I wrote these three lines like, I don't know,
  • 00:21:35
    a month or two ago and "God of the Breakthrough,
  • 00:21:38
    Your promises stand true, You haven't failed us yet."
  • 00:21:40
    And we were just like. All right.
  • 00:21:44
    And we just kind of went -- went for it.
  • 00:21:46
    - Yeah. It felt personal and also felt us,
  • 00:21:48
    as leaders and songwriters in our community,
  • 00:21:52
    part of our joy in our role is to give voice
  • 00:21:55
    to what our God's doing in our place
  • 00:21:57
    and what we can say back to Him.
  • 00:21:58
    And so it felt like I need to say that right now
  • 00:22:02
    and I think our church needs to say that right now.
  • 00:22:05
    So how do we -- let's go down that road.
  • 00:22:07
    Let's run with it. Yeah.
  • 00:22:09
    - That whole idea of just knocking on God's door,
  • 00:22:11
    saying, "Hey, we're we're over here."
  • 00:22:13
    Knock, knock. "We're over here. We're over here."
  • 00:22:16
    That's sort of resonating of the, you know, where
  • 00:22:19
    the Lord says, "Hey, if you knock, the door will be answered,
  • 00:22:22
    if you ask, it'll be given unto you."
  • 00:22:23
    So like what if corporately we were able to knock?
  • 00:22:27
    What if corporately we were able to ask?
  • 00:22:30
    - It's a desperate song.
  • 00:22:31
    It's a cry of desperation, but it's not one of scarcity.
  • 00:22:34
    It's not one of God's absent,
  • 00:22:36
    we're gonna beg Him to come here
  • 00:22:38
    because He needs us to do that.
  • 00:22:39
    It's one of authority and sonship to say,
  • 00:22:42
    "No, in our moment of need, we will turn to Him
  • 00:22:45
    because He is faithful."
  • 00:22:46
    It's one of the authorities given to us to say,
  • 00:22:49
    "That's who we call upon. I will trust Your love.
  • 00:22:51
    I will trust Your steadfast love.
  • 00:22:53
    So there's nowhere else to go, so I'm just gonna admit that.
  • 00:22:56
    Nowhere else to turn to, so then I'm begging you.
  • 00:22:59
    I need you here. I need you to be who you are." You know?
  • 00:23:03
    - And so I think you said this one time before,
  • 00:23:05
    you said we don't want going to God to be a last resort.
  • 00:23:08
    We want going to God to be the first line of defense.
  • 00:23:12
    And so, you know, almost like, "God, make this easier."
  • 00:23:15
    I think that's sometimes my prayer,
  • 00:23:17
    "God, make this so much easier."
  • 00:23:19
    And rather, "God, make make me stronger.
  • 00:23:22
    Equip me for now. And I want to invite You into this."
  • 00:23:25
    And so that's what I think God of the Breakthrough
  • 00:23:27
    does for our community,
  • 00:23:28
    what I think God to the Breakthrough can do
  • 00:23:30
    in your small group or in your church
  • 00:23:32
    or wherever you're at in your diagnosis,
  • 00:23:34
    in your heartache, in your brokenness,
  • 00:23:37
    that we would say simply,
  • 00:23:39
    "God, come near, come here, come near, come here."
  • 00:23:44
    And when we invite Him, He's always faithful.
  • 00:24:18
    [ music: God of the Breakthrough ]
  • 00:25:32
    This song is called God of the Breakthrough.
  • 00:25:35
    It's a perfect song when you feel like
  • 00:25:38
    you're at the end of your rope,
  • 00:25:39
    when you're at the edge of the table,
  • 00:25:40
    when the ends aren't meeting,
  • 00:25:43
    when you just can't get to where you need to go,
  • 00:25:45
    where you say there's nowhere else to go.
  • 00:25:47
    So oftentimes people say, "I hit rock bottom."
  • 00:25:50
    Sometimes we don't get serious with God
  • 00:25:52
    until we realize that I can't think my way out of this.
  • 00:25:55
    I can't spend my way out of this.
  • 00:25:57
    I can't strategize my way out of this.
  • 00:26:01
    You might be there right now in the midst of our crisis.
  • 00:26:04
    Right now, you might say, "I've nowhere else to go.
  • 00:26:06
    I don't know how I'm going to get groceries this week.
  • 00:26:08
    I don't know how I'm going to feed myself, my family.
  • 00:26:10
    I don't know how I'm going to have any semblance
  • 00:26:14
    of anything this week."
  • 00:26:16
    And then the old problems maybe still exist,
  • 00:26:17
    the addiction still may there.
  • 00:26:21
    The old being underemployed is still there.
  • 00:26:24
    The old problems I have with my spouse are still there
  • 00:26:28
    or the lack of having a spouse which I want.
  • 00:26:31
    The song is about breakthrough because we follow
  • 00:26:33
    a God of the Breakthrough.
  • 00:26:34
    Let me just pray for you before you do this song.
  • 00:26:37
    So, God, we are kneeling at Your door.
  • 00:26:40
    That's what we're doing.
  • 00:26:42
    We're saying, come here, God, come here, come here.
  • 00:26:45
    Come here to us.
  • 00:26:46
    We do not have the resources that we need.
  • 00:26:50
    Come here to us. We are at the end of our energy.
  • 00:26:53
    We're at the end of our finances.
  • 00:26:55
    We're at the end of our thinking.
  • 00:26:58
    We've tried everything to have a breakthrough
  • 00:27:00
    in a specific area and it's just not happening.
  • 00:27:03
    God, we need you.
  • 00:27:06
    We don't need the idea of God; we need You in our life,
  • 00:27:10
    in our situation.
  • 00:27:12
    Let's sing that again, guys.
  • 00:27:32
    Come here, come here, come here financially.
  • 00:27:36
    Come here spiritually. Come here emotionally.
  • 00:27:39
    Come here relationally. Come here. Come here. God.
  • 00:27:43
    You're the God of the Breakthrough. Come, come to us now.
  • 00:30:25
    We're going to sing that verse again.
  • 00:30:27
    Just wherever you're at, if you're able to right now,
  • 00:30:30
    I just want you to put both hands out front of you.
  • 00:30:34
    One, I want you to look at your hands
  • 00:30:36
    and realize they're empty.
  • 00:30:39
    We hold nothing before Him and we ask Him
  • 00:30:42
    and set in motion our body to receive Him
  • 00:30:45
    and what He has for us.
  • 00:38:00
    - We're gonna pick back up next week
  • 00:38:01
    to hear about more prophecies being fulfilled.
  • 00:38:04
    Crazy, crazy, crazy.
  • 00:38:05
    I just wanna remind you that if you want to be a giver,
  • 00:38:08
    if you want to engage with us financially,
  • 00:38:09
    just follow the instructions on the bottom of the screen.
  • 00:38:13
    And I'll tell you the reason we do that is
  • 00:38:15
    we want to fund life change.
  • 00:38:16
    We want to get our hands dirty at Crossroads,
  • 00:38:18
    whether it's helping for child care with medical workers
  • 00:38:22
    or we want to get our hands dirty by getting our hands clean.
  • 00:38:27
    Yes, crazy, crazy, crazy some of the innovative,
  • 00:38:30
    creative things are happening in our community.
  • 00:38:33
    We're going to leave you
  • 00:38:34
    with one of those examples right now.
  • 00:38:37
    I'm Andy Reider, Community Pastor of Crossroads Dayton.
  • 00:38:40
    And throughout this whole crisis, we've been looking
  • 00:38:43
    for ways as a community to step into the gap
  • 00:38:46
    and to meet tangible, practical needs.
  • 00:38:49
    And one of the ways that we've done that is
  • 00:38:52
    by partnering with the local distillery called
  • 00:38:54
    Stillwrights, a fantastic local distillery I will say,
  • 00:38:56
    to create this.
  • 00:38:58
    This is a much needed hand sanitizer, 5000 bottles
  • 00:39:01
    that we're helping to produce
  • 00:39:03
    for Wright-Patterson Air Force Base
  • 00:39:04
    and another thousand to be given to retirement homes
  • 00:39:08
    and first responders around our community.
  • 00:39:11
    It's just one of those things that makes me thankful
  • 00:39:13
    for the creativity and just the generosity
  • 00:39:18
    of people on this team.
  • 00:39:19
    So I'm glad to be on this team with each of you
  • 00:39:23
    and to be doing creative stuff.
  • 00:39:28
    - So thanks for being with us today.
  • 00:39:29
    Let me just pray for you and pray for your week.
  • 00:39:31
    God, I thank You that You've given us time
  • 00:39:33
    to reorient ourselves spiritually.
  • 00:39:36
    And I pray that that orientation remains all week long.
  • 00:39:40
    Give us Your hope, give us Your perseverance.
  • 00:39:42
    And we want to be with You all week long.
  • 00:39:44
    Thank you. Amen.

Process, journal or discuss the themes of this article - here's a few questions to get the ball rolling...

Welcome to the Weekend Follow Up.

  1. We’ve been staying at home around a month now. Share one thing that’s helped you stay sane, connected to others, rested, or simply had fun that you want to keep doing.

  2. Brian talked about a power that transcends our problems no matter how difficult life may be with our circumstances. Think about a time where you’ve experienced that power to share with the group. Or being in difficult circumstances now, what could it look like to experience God’s power?

  3. Read Acts 7:57-60 out loud. While we might not have faced death because of our faith, there are likely places where it’s caused tension. Share where you’ve felt this tension — maybe at work, home, with family or friends.

  4. Jeremy & Katie Sharp shared their story where they still found hope in God even during the trials with their son, Braden. Read Romans 12:12. What does this mean for you as you lean into God’s promises during difficult times?

  5. Showing great joy in hope takes intentionality, and being patient in trouble isn’t always easy. But maybe we can see God’s power in the midst of difficulty by inviting him in through prayer. Pray for one another for your week ahead. See you next week.

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Apr 18, 2020

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