The Gift Of Adversity | TBN

The Gift Of Adversity

Watch The Gift Of Adversity
June 2, 2019
27:33

Kerry Shook Ministries with Kerry Shook

Closed captions

The Gift Of Adversity

Show timecode
Hide timecode
  • the next level and without the struggle, without the pain,
  • 00:00:04.040 --> 00:00:08.040
  • without the hardship then we can never fulfill our destiny
  • 00:00:08.050 --> 00:00:13.000
  • that God has for us.
  • 00:00:13.010 --> 00:00:14.220
  • 00:00:14.230 --> 00:00:24.220
  • 00:00:24.230 --> 00:00:34.220
  • 00:00:34.230 --> 00:00:37.200
  • Kerry: I have up here some butterflies.
  • 00:00:37.210 --> 00:00:41.030
  • These butterflies are called Painted Ladies, and you've
  • 00:00:41.040 --> 00:00:45.110
  • probably seen some butterflies like this, because Painted
  • 00:00:45.120 --> 00:00:49.210
  • Ladies are the most common butterfly in the world.
  • 00:00:49.220 --> 00:00:52.090
  • In fact, these butterflies are found in almost
  • 00:00:52.100 --> 00:00:54.290
  • every continent on the earth.
  • 00:00:55.000 --> 00:00:57.150
  • They're long migrators.
  • 00:00:57.160 --> 00:00:59.030
  • I mean, they can fly up to a hundred miles a day.
  • 00:00:59.040 --> 00:01:03.280
  • I mean, they're pretty strong, these little guys, and they're
  • 00:01:03.290 --> 00:01:06.040
  • one of the fastest butterflies in the whole butterfly world.
  • 00:01:06.050 --> 00:01:09.120
  • These Painted Lady butterflies can reach speeds of up
  • 00:01:09.130 --> 00:01:12.040
  • to 30 miles per hour.
  • 00:01:12.050 --> 00:01:14.160
  • Now, there are male and female Painted Ladies
  • 00:01:14.170 --> 00:01:17.130
  • in this little box here.
  • 00:01:17.140 --> 00:01:20.270
  • I thought it's kinda sad for the guys, you know,
  • 00:01:20.280 --> 00:01:23.010
  • that they're called Painted Ladies, as well, but, oh, well.
  • 00:01:23.020 --> 00:01:26.180
  • And this Painted Lady butterfly used to be, of course, a Painted
  • 00:01:26.190 --> 00:01:32.250
  • Lady larva, and the Painted Lady larvas,
  • 00:01:32.260 --> 00:01:36.020
  • what they do is spin a silk chrysalis.
  • 00:01:36.030 --> 00:01:40.210
  • Now, you know that butterflies don't make cocoons, right?
  • 00:01:40.220 --> 00:01:44.060
  • It's moths that make cocoons.
  • 00:01:44.070 --> 00:01:46.020
  • It's butterflies that make a chrysalis, and so this larva
  • 00:01:46.030 --> 00:01:51.200
  • will make a chrysalis out of silk and then this amazing
  • 00:01:51.210 --> 00:01:56.080
  • transformation takes place that you know about,
  • 00:01:56.090 --> 00:01:58.170
  • where the metamorphosis.
  • 00:01:58.180 --> 00:02:01.020
  • That it goes from this ugly caterpillar stuck
  • 00:02:01.030 --> 00:02:03.230
  • on a leaf to a beautiful butterfly that just soars.
  • 00:02:03.240 --> 00:02:09.110
  • Somebody get it off my hand.
  • 00:02:09.120 --> 00:02:10.270
  • I don't know.
  • 00:02:10.280 --> 00:02:12.160
  • In fact, these guys can go all the way to 30.000 feet.
  • 00:02:12.170 --> 00:02:20.000
  • Isn't that amazing?
  • 00:02:20.010 --> 00:02:22.160
  • I heard the story of a little boy who saw a chrysalis
  • 00:02:22.170 --> 00:02:26.130
  • on a branch, and so he walked over to get a closer look,
  • 00:02:26.140 --> 00:02:29.100
  • and he noticed it was moving, and then he noticed
  • 00:02:29.110 --> 00:02:31.280
  • there was a butterfly inside struggling to get out.
  • 00:02:31.290 --> 00:02:35.070
  • And as he watched the butterfly struggle and struggle to get out
  • 00:02:35.080 --> 00:02:39.060
  • of that chrysalis and break free, he felt sorry for it,
  • 00:02:39.070 --> 00:02:42.210
  • and it struggled.
  • 00:02:42.220 --> 00:02:44.010
  • And he wanted to help it out, so he took a pocket knife out,
  • 00:02:44.020 --> 00:02:46.210
  • and he cut open the chrysalis, and he pulled out the butterfly,
  • 00:02:46.220 --> 00:02:53.020
  • and he held it in his hand, and he just waited excitedly
  • 00:02:53.030 --> 00:02:56.060
  • for the butterfly to fly away.
  • 00:02:56.070 --> 00:03:00.120
  • But it didn't move and within minutes it was dead.
  • 00:03:00.130 --> 00:03:03.190
  • The butterfly needed the struggle
  • 00:03:03.200 --> 00:03:05.280
  • to strengthen its wings.
  • 00:03:05.290 --> 00:03:08.120
  • The butterfly needed the struggle in order to be able to
  • 00:03:08.130 --> 00:03:11.000
  • soar, and we need struggles so that we can soar in life.
  • 00:03:11.010 --> 00:03:16.250
  • Without adversity you could never get to your destiny.
  • 00:03:16.260 --> 00:03:22.080
  • Adversity is one of our greatest allies.
  • 00:03:22.090 --> 00:03:27.010
  • We need it desperately.
  • 00:03:27.020 --> 00:03:29.030
  • There was a famous study done by Victor and Mildred Goertzel,
  • 00:03:29.040 --> 00:03:32.160
  • where they studied hundreds of exceptionally gifted people,
  • 00:03:32.170 --> 00:03:34.280
  • trying to find out what produced such greatness in their lives.
  • 00:03:34.290 --> 00:03:38.200
  • Was there a common thread that ran through all these amazing
  • 00:03:38.210 --> 00:03:42.220
  • and outstanding people's lives that they could find?
  • 00:03:42.230 --> 00:03:46.100
  • Surprisingly, they found that the most common theme among
  • 00:03:46.110 --> 00:03:50.050
  • almost every one of them was that they experienced great
  • 00:03:50.060 --> 00:03:55.030
  • obstacles and overcame them.
  • 00:03:55.040 --> 00:03:57.280
  • They had tremendous adversity that they had to face
  • 00:03:57.290 --> 00:04:01.030
  • in their life.
  • 00:04:01.040 --> 00:04:02.160
  • See, we look at our problems and our struggles and our pain,
  • 00:04:02.170 --> 00:04:04.250
  • and we think it's the very thing that's keeping us stuck.
  • 00:04:04.260 --> 00:04:08.190
  • And we look at our problems, and we look at our adversity, and we
  • 00:04:08.200 --> 00:04:13.040
  • look at all the things that have come against us, and we think
  • 00:04:13.050 --> 00:04:17.060
  • that's our problem, but your problem is not the problem.
  • 00:04:17.070 --> 00:04:23.190
  • In fact, it's just the opposite.
  • 00:04:23.200 --> 00:04:26.100
  • It turns out that adversity is our greatest advantage to go
  • 00:04:26.110 --> 00:04:32.000
  • into the next level and without the struggle, without the pain,
  • 00:04:32.010 --> 00:04:36.070
  • without the hardship, then we can never fulfill our destiny
  • 00:04:36.080 --> 00:04:41.030
  • that God has for us.
  • 00:04:41.040 --> 00:04:42.130
  • And that's why we're starting this new series today
  • 00:04:42.140 --> 00:04:44.140
  • that we're calling "The Advantage of Adversity,"
  • 00:04:44.150 --> 00:04:47.160
  • and I want you to open your Bibles to 2 Corinthians.
  • 00:04:47.170 --> 00:04:52.130
  • In 2 Corinthians chapter 12 we see here that Paul had this
  • 00:04:52.140 --> 00:04:57.040
  • physical problem that hit him suddenly, and he doesn't tell us
  • 00:04:57.050 --> 00:05:01.100
  • what it is, but scholars have speculated
  • 00:05:01.110 --> 00:05:03.130
  • that maybe it was his eyesight.
  • 00:05:03.140 --> 00:05:05.040
  • That he was going blind.
  • 00:05:05.050 --> 00:05:06.240
  • We don't know, but that'd be a really difficult thing
  • 00:05:06.250 --> 00:05:09.110
  • if you're trying to write most of the New Testament,
  • 00:05:09.120 --> 00:05:12.010
  • and Paul prayed for God to take it away.
  • 00:05:12.020 --> 00:05:15.150
  • And we do know that it wasn't from God.
  • 00:05:15.160 --> 00:05:17.100
  • It was from Satan to try to get at him and stop him from doing
  • 00:05:17.110 --> 00:05:21.110
  • what he was doing, and so Paul prayed for God to take it away.
  • 00:05:21.120 --> 00:05:26.130
  • And Paul was such a man of God that whenever Paul prayed,
  • 00:05:26.140 --> 00:05:29.160
  • I mean, usually there'd be a miracle instantly.
  • 00:05:29.170 --> 00:05:32.120
  • If he prayed for a problem to go away, that problem would just
  • 00:05:32.130 --> 00:05:34.250
  • vanish, but this time he prays and nothing happens.
  • 00:05:34.260 --> 00:05:38.100
  • And he prayed three times for God to take this away and after
  • 00:05:38.110 --> 00:05:44.220
  • the third time God speaks to him, and I believe with all my
  • 00:05:44.230 --> 00:05:48.170
  • heart this could be the day that you look back on 5 years from
  • 00:05:48.180 --> 00:05:52.220
  • now, 20 years from now, 30 years from now and say, "That was
  • 00:05:52.230 --> 00:05:56.180
  • the day that God opened my eyes, and I saw it for the first time
  • 00:05:56.190 --> 00:06:00.160
  • and nothing has ever been the same since."
  • 00:06:00.170 --> 00:06:03.280
  • This is the kind of life-altering principle that
  • 00:06:03.290 --> 00:06:06.170
  • we're talking about today from God's Word,
  • 00:06:06.180 --> 00:06:09.000
  • and so follow along with me.
  • 00:06:09.010 --> 00:06:11.190
  • God says this to Paul, "My grace is enough; it's all you need.
  • 00:06:11.200 --> 00:06:16.040
  • My strength comes into its own in your weakness."
  • 00:06:16.050 --> 00:06:19.180
  • And Paul went on to say, "Once I heard that,
  • 00:06:19.190 --> 00:06:21.220
  • I quit focusing on the handicap
  • 00:06:21.230 --> 00:06:23.140
  • and began appreciating the gift."
  • 00:06:23.150 --> 00:06:26.150
  • You can be seated, and I want you to underline the last phrase
  • 00:06:26.160 --> 00:06:29.200
  • in that passage where Paul says, "I began appreciating the gift,"
  • 00:06:29.210 --> 00:06:36.010
  • appreciating the gift.
  • 00:06:36.020 --> 00:06:38.260
  • Paul said, "My whole perspective changed on the problem.
  • 00:06:38.270 --> 00:06:41.220
  • That it was devastating to me, but then my perspective changed,
  • 00:06:41.230 --> 00:06:46.230
  • and I realized this problem wasn't devastating.
  • 00:06:46.240 --> 00:06:49.290
  • This was a gift."
  • 00:06:50.000 --> 00:06:52.020
  • Paul said, "I came to realize that adversity
  • 00:06:52.030 --> 00:06:54.260
  • was a great gift."
  • 00:06:54.270 --> 00:06:57.080
  • Your problem is not the problem.
  • 00:06:57.090 --> 00:06:58.180
  • It's your perspective on the problem that keeps you stuck
  • 00:06:58.190 --> 00:07:01.210
  • and when Paul realized that his greatest adversity
  • 00:07:01.220 --> 00:07:05.150
  • was his greatest opportunity, and I really am praying
  • 00:07:05.160 --> 00:07:10.040
  • that you will see that today.
  • 00:07:10.050 --> 00:07:12.170
  • That God will just open up your spiritual eyes and your heart
  • 00:07:12.180 --> 00:07:15.210
  • to see that your greatest adversity--I don't
  • 00:07:15.220 --> 00:07:17.260
  • know what it is.
  • 00:07:17.270 --> 00:07:19.060
  • I don't know what it is.
  • 00:07:19.070 --> 00:07:20.160
  • Maybe it's your parents got a divorce when you were little.
  • 00:07:20.170 --> 00:07:25.230
  • Maybe your dad abandoned you.
  • 00:07:25.240 --> 00:07:27.030
  • Maybe you're going through an illness right now.
  • 00:07:27.040 --> 00:07:31.210
  • That maybe you're going through depression.
  • 00:07:31.220 --> 00:07:34.010
  • Maybe--I don't know what it is that's going on in your life
  • 00:07:34.020 --> 00:07:37.220
  • right now, but I want you to know your greatest adversity is
  • 00:07:37.230 --> 00:07:43.260
  • really your greatest opportunity that God wants to use in your
  • 00:07:43.270 --> 00:07:47.130
  • life to bring about amazing blessings, to do great things
  • 00:07:47.140 --> 00:07:52.140
  • in you, to change you from the inside out.
  • 00:07:52.150 --> 00:07:55.120
  • female announcer: Still to come with Pastor Kerry Shook.
  • 00:07:55.130 --> 00:07:58.100
  • Kerry: Many times we're by a brook where everything
  • 00:07:58.110 --> 00:08:02.110
  • is working great and everything is comfortable,
  • 00:08:02.120 --> 00:08:05.040
  • but as long as everything is comfortable in your life
  • 00:08:05.050 --> 00:08:09.080
  • you probably won't change or grow.
  • 00:08:09.090 --> 00:08:11.080
  • 00:08:11.090 --> 00:08:15.200
  • announcer: Kerry Shook Ministries is committed
  • 00:08:15.210 --> 00:08:22.070
  • to sharing the gospel and providing the tools necessary
  • 00:08:22.080 --> 00:08:25.190
  • for believers to grow in their relationship with Jesus
  • 00:08:25.200 --> 00:08:28.250
  • through television, media, and creative resources.
  • 00:08:28.260 --> 00:08:33.040
  • Now with social media we have a great opportunity to join and
  • 00:08:33.050 --> 00:08:37.110
  • encourage one another so that we can all grow in Christ together.
  • 00:08:37.120 --> 00:08:41.270
  • We invite you to join us on Facebook,
  • 00:08:41.280 --> 00:08:44.020
  • Instagram, and YouTube.
  • 00:08:44.030 --> 00:08:46.040
  • We wanna stay connected to you throughout your week,
  • 00:08:46.050 --> 00:08:49.050
  • standing with you in times of need and celebrating with you
  • 00:08:49.060 --> 00:08:52.140
  • in times of joy.
  • 00:08:52.150 --> 00:08:53.240
  • On these channels you will find words of encouragement, learn of
  • 00:08:53.250 --> 00:08:57.120
  • special events, enjoy inspiring messages, and you can send us
  • 00:08:57.130 --> 00:09:02.000
  • your prayer requests, share praises,
  • 00:09:02.010 --> 00:09:04.090
  • and help inspire others.
  • 00:09:04.100 --> 00:09:06.030
  • Help us lift each other up and get connected today.
  • 00:09:06.040 --> 00:09:09.070
  • Go to KerryShook.org or find us on Facebook,
  • 00:09:09.080 --> 00:09:13.260
  • Instagram, and YouTube.
  • 00:09:13.270 --> 00:09:15.120
  • Your participation will carry the light of Christ
  • 00:09:15.130 --> 00:09:18.210
  • into the world.
  • 00:09:18.220 --> 00:09:20.220
  • Kerry: Now, I've taught you through the Painted Lady
  • 00:09:22.060 --> 00:09:28.170
  • butterfly, but now I've got something that's not quite as
  • 00:09:28.180 --> 00:09:30.210
  • pretty, and I am--I've got my life in my hands right now.
  • 00:09:30.220 --> 00:09:36.190
  • This thing could clip off a finger pretty easily.
  • 00:09:36.200 --> 00:09:41.070
  • This is a 4-pound lobster.
  • 00:09:41.080 --> 00:09:44.090
  • It is really heavy, and he just broke a pencil backstage,
  • 00:09:44.100 --> 00:09:49.190
  • so I'm gonna try to keep away from him.
  • 00:09:49.200 --> 00:09:52.260
  • But I read the other day something written
  • 00:09:52.270 --> 00:09:58.190
  • by Dr. Abraham Twerski, and he said that he was sitting
  • 00:09:58.200 --> 00:10:03.010
  • in a dentist office one day,
  • 00:10:03.020 --> 00:10:04.220
  • and he was waiting to see the dentist, and he picked up
  • 00:10:04.230 --> 00:10:08.000
  • a magazine and saw an article in that
  • 00:10:08.010 --> 00:10:12.200
  • magazine that was called "How Do Lobsters Grow?"
  • 00:10:12.210 --> 00:10:17.120
  • How do lobsters grow?
  • 00:10:17.130 --> 00:10:18.220
  • You know how lobsters grow?
  • 00:10:18.230 --> 00:10:20.110
  • It turns out lobsters are real soft and squishy animals, but
  • 00:10:20.120 --> 00:10:25.160
  • they live inside a rigid shell and that rigid shell can be
  • 00:10:25.170 --> 00:10:31.010
  • confining when they grow, and so when they start
  • 00:10:31.020 --> 00:10:33.040
  • to grow they feel pressure.
  • 00:10:33.050 --> 00:10:36.250
  • It feels really uncomfortable.
  • 00:10:36.260 --> 00:10:39.250
  • They feel pain against that shell as they're trying to grow,
  • 00:10:39.260 --> 00:10:43.180
  • and so they, when they start feeling that pressure and they
  • 00:10:43.190 --> 00:10:46.200
  • start feeling uncomfortable in that confining shell, they go
  • 00:10:46.210 --> 00:10:51.150
  • under a rock formation to get away from their predators
  • 00:10:51.160 --> 00:10:53.280
  • and then they cast off the rigid shell
  • 00:10:53.290 --> 00:10:58.020
  • and then they produce a new one.
  • 00:10:58.030 --> 00:10:59.260
  • And then, soon the new one starts to become confining.
  • 00:10:59.270 --> 00:11:04.010
  • This rigid, confining shell, as they start to grow,
  • 00:11:04.020 --> 00:11:06.280
  • starts to make them feel really uncomfortable.
  • 00:11:06.290 --> 00:11:09.010
  • They feel the pressure, and they feel the pain, and so they go
  • 00:11:09.020 --> 00:11:12.040
  • back under the rocks and they cast off the rigid shell and
  • 00:11:12.050 --> 00:11:17.060
  • they produce a new one, and this goes on over and over again in
  • 00:11:17.070 --> 00:11:21.040
  • the lobster's life so the lobster can grow.
  • 00:11:21.050 --> 00:11:23.220
  • And, man, here is the point: the stimulus for growth is that they
  • 00:11:23.230 --> 00:11:30.140
  • feel the pressure, and they feel uncomfortable.
  • 00:11:30.150 --> 00:11:35.270
  • Think about it for a moment.
  • 00:11:35.280 --> 00:11:38.130
  • Dr. Twerski says that he thought about that,
  • 00:11:38.140 --> 00:11:41.270
  • and he thought, "You know what?
  • 00:11:41.280 --> 00:11:43.080
  • If lobsters had doctors they would never grow, because as
  • 00:11:43.090 --> 00:11:47.080
  • soon as they start feeling uncomfortable they would go to
  • 00:11:47.090 --> 00:11:49.070
  • the doctor, and the doctor would give them a Valium or a Percocet
  • 00:11:49.080 --> 00:11:51.150
  • and send them home, and they would feel fine, and they
  • 00:11:51.160 --> 00:11:54.220
  • wouldn't know that they needed to cast off that rigid shell,
  • 00:11:54.230 --> 00:11:58.240
  • and they wouldn't grow."
  • 00:11:58.250 --> 00:12:01.120
  • You see, if we could just get a new perspective on our stresses
  • 00:12:01.130 --> 00:12:05.040
  • and when we're feeling uncomfortable, and we feel the
  • 00:12:05.050 --> 00:12:08.010
  • pressure and the stress rises, and we feel the pain
  • 00:12:08.020 --> 00:12:12.040
  • of adversity, we feel the pressure of adversity,
  • 00:12:12.050 --> 00:12:16.050
  • really that's just a signal that it's time for great growth,
  • 00:12:16.060 --> 00:12:19.210
  • because our greatest adversity produces our greatest growth.
  • 00:12:19.220 --> 00:12:23.090
  • Adversity is a great opportunity for growth, and so some of you
  • 00:12:23.100 --> 00:12:29.020
  • are going through some pressure right now.
  • 00:12:29.030 --> 00:12:31.160
  • I mean, it's overwhelming.
  • 00:12:31.170 --> 00:12:33.190
  • You're going through some of the greatest stresses
  • 00:12:33.200 --> 00:12:36.040
  • of your life right now.
  • 00:12:36.050 --> 00:12:37.160
  • I want you to know that God is getting your attention
  • 00:12:37.170 --> 00:12:41.190
  • because it's time to grow.
  • 00:12:41.200 --> 00:12:44.200
  • This is gonna be a season of growth in your life, and God is
  • 00:12:44.210 --> 00:12:48.200
  • trying to get you to see that, but we miss it so many times
  • 00:12:48.210 --> 00:12:51.150
  • because we have a wrong perspective
  • 00:12:51.160 --> 00:12:53.110
  • on our stresses and our problems.
  • 00:12:53.120 --> 00:12:55.010
  • There was a time in the Old Testament where the prophet
  • 00:12:55.020 --> 00:12:57.080
  • Elijah was led by God next to a beautiful brook,
  • 00:12:57.090 --> 00:13:01.100
  • the Brook Cherith, and it was this beautiful,
  • 00:13:01.110 --> 00:13:03.200
  • flowing brook in the middle of the desert
  • 00:13:03.210 --> 00:13:06.140
  • and everything was great there.
  • 00:13:06.150 --> 00:13:07.240
  • Elijah had water in the desert.
  • 00:13:07.250 --> 00:13:09.130
  • He had food. He had shelter.
  • 00:13:09.140 --> 00:13:11.250
  • Everything was going great at the brook until a couple weeks
  • 00:13:11.260 --> 00:13:15.130
  • later when the brook dried up, and Elijah is,
  • 00:13:15.140 --> 00:13:17.190
  • "God, why did you let the brook dry up?"
  • 00:13:17.200 --> 00:13:20.090
  • And God says, "Because I don't want you to be
  • 00:13:20.100 --> 00:13:21.190
  • by the brook anymore.
  • 00:13:21.200 --> 00:13:23.210
  • I'm gonna move you out from there because I have a purpose
  • 00:13:23.220 --> 00:13:26.170
  • for your life, and I want you to move into your purpose.
  • 00:13:26.180 --> 00:13:28.290
  • I have another plan. I'm redirecting you."
  • 00:13:29.000 --> 00:13:35.110
  • And, you see, many times we're by a brook where everything
  • 00:13:35.120 --> 00:13:40.260
  • is working great and everything is comfortable,
  • 00:13:40.270 --> 00:13:43.190
  • but as long as everything is comfortable in your life
  • 00:13:43.200 --> 00:13:47.230
  • you probably won't change or grow.
  • 00:13:47.240 --> 00:13:51.040
  • The Bible often uses the refiner's fire to describe
  • 00:13:51.050 --> 00:13:58.110
  • suffering and to illustrate suffering, and the Scripture
  • 00:13:58.120 --> 00:14:01.130
  • says that the expert in precious metals will take the precious
  • 00:14:01.140 --> 00:14:05.070
  • metal and put it in the refiner's fire to burn away
  • 00:14:05.080 --> 00:14:07.200
  • all the impurities.
  • 00:14:07.210 --> 00:14:10.060
  • And the silversmith is talked about in Scripture.
  • 00:14:10.070 --> 00:14:12.160
  • He'll take all of the--that silver and everything else
  • 00:14:12.170 --> 00:14:15.230
  • that's in the precious metal and heat up the furnace, and it
  • 00:14:15.240 --> 00:14:19.210
  • burns away at a certain temperature all the things that
  • 00:14:19.220 --> 00:14:22.150
  • aren't silver so that the only thing that's left is the silver.
  • 00:14:22.160 --> 00:14:28.010
  • I read recently where a silversmith was asked,
  • 00:14:28.020 --> 00:14:30.150
  • "How do you know if it's ready?
  • 00:14:30.160 --> 00:14:32.260
  • How do you know if it's just silver?"
  • 00:14:32.270 --> 00:14:34.070
  • He says, "When I can see my reflection in it then I know all
  • 00:14:34.080 --> 00:14:37.270
  • the impurities are burned away," and I thought about that.
  • 00:14:37.280 --> 00:14:44.140
  • God allows us to go through the refiner's fire, the fire of
  • 00:14:44.150 --> 00:14:47.010
  • adversity, at times so that he can burn away all that stuff in
  • 00:14:47.020 --> 00:14:50.220
  • our lives that doesn't look like Jesus, so that when we come
  • 00:14:50.230 --> 00:14:54.180
  • through it, when people look at us, we'll reflect Jesus.
  • 00:14:54.190 --> 00:14:58.260
  • They can see Jesus in us, 'cause God wants you to know him, and
  • 00:14:58.270 --> 00:15:02.120
  • he wants others to know him, and so he wants you to reflect Jesus
  • 00:15:02.130 --> 00:15:06.170
  • so when people look at you they see what Jesus is like.
  • 00:15:06.180 --> 00:15:12.100
  • They see his love and his strength and his character and
  • 00:15:12.110 --> 00:15:15.050
  • his compassion, and they see what Christ is like, and so our
  • 00:15:15.060 --> 00:15:18.250
  • greatest adversity is our greatest opportunity to grow,
  • 00:15:18.260 --> 00:15:21.180
  • but I want you to also see adversity is your greatest
  • 00:15:21.190 --> 00:15:24.020
  • opportunity to give grace.
  • 00:15:24.030 --> 00:15:26.210
  • Paul goes on to say in verse 7, "So I wouldn't get a big head,
  • 00:15:26.220 --> 00:15:30.250
  • I was given the gift of a handicap to keep me
  • 00:15:30.260 --> 00:15:33.040
  • in constant touch with my limitations."
  • 00:15:33.050 --> 00:15:35.250
  • Paul says, "My adversity was a gift because it knocked
  • 00:15:35.260 --> 00:15:39.180
  • the pride out of my life.
  • 00:15:39.190 --> 00:15:42.010
  • It knocked me to my knees, and it took all the pride out
  • 00:15:42.020 --> 00:15:45.070
  • of my life and if I'd had pride in my life I couldn't
  • 00:15:45.080 --> 00:15:48.150
  • have been filled with God's power.
  • 00:15:48.160 --> 00:15:50.030
  • I would have never experienced God's power and his grace that
  • 00:15:50.040 --> 00:15:52.240
  • changed my life and then I would have never given grace
  • 00:15:52.250 --> 00:15:55.100
  • to other," 'cause when you're proud, you're full of yourself,
  • 00:15:55.110 --> 00:15:59.180
  • you can't focus on anyone else.
  • 00:15:59.190 --> 00:16:02.050
  • When you're full of yourself you can't feel for anyone else.
  • 00:16:02.060 --> 00:16:05.190
  • When you're full of yourself you can't be full of God,
  • 00:16:05.200 --> 00:16:07.160
  • and so Paul said, "It gave me compassion for others, as well."
  • 00:16:07.170 --> 00:16:13.160
  • It's our pain and failures that give us compassion for other
  • 00:16:13.170 --> 00:16:17.040
  • people when they're going through difficulties.
  • 00:16:17.050 --> 00:16:18.170
  • If you never failed in life--failure is one of the
  • 00:16:18.180 --> 00:16:21.290
  • greatest gifts you could ever receive, because if you never
  • 00:16:22.000 --> 00:16:25.220
  • fail in life, if you just have a string of continual successes
  • 00:16:25.230 --> 00:16:29.190
  • in which you never fail, you'd be the most pompous,
  • 00:16:29.200 --> 00:16:32.270
  • arrogant person on the face of the earth,
  • 00:16:32.280 --> 00:16:34.080
  • and no one would wanna be around you.
  • 00:16:34.090 --> 00:16:37.040
  • But it's my failures, it's your failures that give you
  • 00:16:37.050 --> 00:16:41.120
  • compassion for other people, that knock the pride out of you
  • 00:16:41.130 --> 00:16:45.130
  • so that you can experience God's grace
  • 00:16:45.140 --> 00:16:47.240
  • and you can give God's grace to others.
  • 00:16:47.250 --> 00:16:49.220
  • I have to say that if I hadn't, for the last, really, 20 years,
  • 00:16:49.230 --> 00:16:57.110
  • experienced anxiety attacks and--you know, at different
  • 00:16:57.120 --> 00:17:01.260
  • times of my life, you know, I've experienced anxiety and
  • 00:17:01.270 --> 00:17:07.070
  • depression and during those times, you know,
  • 00:17:07.080 --> 00:17:11.060
  • I felt God's presence the most, but I have to say this.
  • 00:17:11.070 --> 00:17:15.050
  • That if I would have never gone through that, if I would have
  • 00:17:15.060 --> 00:17:18.010
  • never experienced that, when someone came up to me and said,
  • 00:17:18.020 --> 00:17:23.110
  • "Pastor Kerry, I just need you to pray.
  • 00:17:23.120 --> 00:17:25.100
  • I'm having panic attacks, or I'm going through
  • 00:17:25.110 --> 00:17:26.240
  • a really deep depression right now.
  • 00:17:26.250 --> 00:17:28.040
  • And I'm going to the doctors, I'm doing everything, but
  • 00:17:28.050 --> 00:17:30.130
  • it's--you know, it's just such a struggle," you know, I might
  • 00:17:30.140 --> 00:17:34.270
  • have thought--I wouldn't have said it, but I'd have probably
  • 00:17:34.280 --> 00:17:36.230
  • thought, just to be real honest with you, "Just buck up, man,
  • 00:17:36.240 --> 00:17:40.020
  • and trust God, stop worrying."
  • 00:17:40.030 --> 00:17:44.000
  • But instead what I say and what I think is, "I'm so sorry.
  • 00:17:44.010 --> 00:17:49.240
  • I know what you're going through.
  • 00:17:49.250 --> 00:17:51.080
  • It's so, oh, so painful. It's so difficult.
  • 00:17:51.090 --> 00:17:54.180
  • It's you feel so helpless.
  • 00:17:54.190 --> 00:17:55.280
  • You feel so--" I get it, you know, and I feel for you deeply.
  • 00:17:55.290 --> 00:18:00.130
  • You see, if you never have pain and you never have problems and
  • 00:18:00.140 --> 00:18:04.100
  • you never have failures, you have no empathy or compassion.
  • 00:18:04.110 --> 00:18:10.240
  • You'll never become the person that God wants you to be and
  • 00:18:10.250 --> 00:18:13.280
  • that's the reason why you're experiencing some failure.
  • 00:18:13.290 --> 00:18:16.120
  • I mean, the worst thing that ever happened to you is just
  • 00:18:16.130 --> 00:18:18.290
  • always succeed at everything, then you gotta wonder,
  • 00:18:19.000 --> 00:18:22.130
  • "You know, wow! I mean, am I a child of God?"
  • 00:18:22.140 --> 00:18:26.220
  • Because God allows failures in our lives
  • 00:18:26.230 --> 00:18:30.090
  • so that we can go to new levels in the future.
  • 00:18:30.100 --> 00:18:35.050
  • Adversity is your greatest opportunity to give grace,
  • 00:18:35.060 --> 00:18:38.270
  • but then adversity is also your greatest opportunity
  • 00:18:38.280 --> 00:18:40.280
  • to experience God.
  • 00:18:40.290 --> 00:18:42.100
  • It's your greatest opportunity to grow, it's your greatest
  • 00:18:42.110 --> 00:18:44.160
  • opportunity to give grace, but the most important
  • 00:18:44.170 --> 00:18:46.190
  • one of all is it's your greatest opportunity to experience God.
  • 00:18:46.200 --> 00:18:49.260
  • God wants you to experience him.
  • 00:18:49.270 --> 00:18:52.050
  • That's the number one thing God wants.
  • 00:18:52.060 --> 00:18:54.140
  • He wants you to experience him so that he will be glorified
  • 00:18:54.150 --> 00:18:58.150
  • in your life, and he wants others to experience him
  • 00:18:58.160 --> 00:19:00.150
  • by looking at you.
  • 00:19:00.160 --> 00:19:01.250
  • God wants you to experience him and that's why many times in
  • 00:19:01.260 --> 00:19:06.060
  • adversity is where God works his greatest work, and we experience
  • 00:19:06.070 --> 00:19:11.090
  • God, 'cause really the only way to get a new perspective on your
  • 00:19:11.100 --> 00:19:14.140
  • problems is to experience God and learn how much he cares
  • 00:19:14.150 --> 00:19:17.270
  • about you and how strong he is and how powerful he is, because
  • 00:19:17.280 --> 00:19:20.170
  • once you get a glimpse of God you get your eyes off your
  • 00:19:20.180 --> 00:19:22.270
  • problems and onto God, and it just changes everything.
  • 00:19:22.280 --> 00:19:26.230
  • And so, what I want you to do--I'm giving you homework.
  • 00:19:26.240 --> 00:19:29.030
  • Your homework is go home and read all of Isaiah 40.
  • 00:19:29.040 --> 00:19:33.100
  • I challenge you to read it every day this week.
  • 00:19:33.110 --> 00:19:36.260
  • Take you about ten minutes.
  • 00:19:36.270 --> 00:19:38.070
  • Read Isaiah 40 every day this week.
  • 00:19:38.080 --> 00:19:39.170
  • Pray about it and ask God to open up your eyes and ask God
  • 00:19:39.180 --> 00:19:42.200
  • to speak to your heart through it,
  • 00:19:42.210 --> 00:19:44.140
  • and it's just an amazing passage.
  • 00:19:44.150 --> 00:19:46.090
  • It's all about experiencing God and how much he cares
  • 00:19:46.100 --> 00:19:49.290
  • and how strong he is, but let's do a little overview.
  • 00:19:50.000 --> 00:19:53.190
  • First, I want you to see that God cares about you.
  • 00:19:53.200 --> 00:19:56.110
  • You gotta know that God cares about you,
  • 00:19:56.120 --> 00:19:58.060
  • or adversity will just take you out of the game.
  • 00:19:58.070 --> 00:20:00.240
  • In Isaiah 40, verse 11 it says, "Like a shepherd,
  • 00:20:00.250 --> 00:20:03.110
  • he will care for his flock."
  • 00:20:03.120 --> 00:20:05.100
  • He's a loving Shepherd who cares about every detail of your life.
  • 00:20:05.110 --> 00:20:08.120
  • Now, a shepherd in Christ's day would know all the details about
  • 00:20:08.130 --> 00:20:12.130
  • every one of his sheep and that shepherd would protect the
  • 00:20:12.140 --> 00:20:15.290
  • sheep, watch over the sheep, nourish the sheep,
  • 00:20:16.000 --> 00:20:18.240
  • care for the sheep.
  • 00:20:18.250 --> 00:20:20.140
  • That shepherd cared for each one and if one of the sheep started
  • 00:20:20.150 --> 00:20:26.120
  • to wander away--and sheep are about the dumbest animal
  • 00:20:26.130 --> 00:20:28.040
  • on the face of the earth and if one started to wander away
  • 00:20:28.050 --> 00:20:32.130
  • and wander into danger the shepherd would take that staff
  • 00:20:32.140 --> 00:20:34.220
  • and bring them back.
  • 00:20:34.230 --> 00:20:36.130
  • And the sheep wouldn't like it because they would think that
  • 00:20:36.140 --> 00:20:38.180
  • the shepherd's hurting them, say, "Why are you gonna
  • 00:20:38.190 --> 00:20:42.140
  • put that staff around my neck and pull me back?
  • 00:20:42.150 --> 00:20:44.070
  • That hurts. Don't do that."
  • 00:20:44.080 --> 00:20:45.200
  • And it's like, "Well, I'm gonna keep you
  • 00:20:45.210 --> 00:20:47.000
  • from going over a cliff."
  • 00:20:47.010 --> 00:20:49.210
  • Some lessons we can only learn through the pain of failure
  • 00:20:49.220 --> 00:20:55.150
  • and because God loves us,
  • 00:20:55.160 --> 00:20:57.250
  • God disciplines his children at times.
  • 00:20:57.260 --> 00:21:00.220
  • Sometimes the problem corrects us.
  • 00:21:00.230 --> 00:21:03.190
  • We go through pain and failure, and it corrects us, and we're
  • 00:21:03.200 --> 00:21:07.150
  • going the wrong direction.
  • 00:21:07.160 --> 00:21:09.240
  • We're not even thinking about it.
  • 00:21:09.250 --> 00:21:12.000
  • Because God loves us there are times he won't rescue us
  • 00:21:12.010 --> 00:21:14.020
  • from the failure.
  • 00:21:14.030 --> 00:21:15.120
  • That he lets us experience the failure of our wrong choices
  • 00:21:15.130 --> 00:21:18.190
  • and bad decisions so that we'll experience the pain,
  • 00:21:18.200 --> 00:21:21.010
  • so that it will change us, so we'll have a different future.
  • 00:21:21.020 --> 00:21:24.160
  • So, God cares about you.
  • 00:21:24.170 --> 00:21:25.260
  • Secondly, God cries with you. This is really important.
  • 00:21:25.270 --> 00:21:28.180
  • In verse 11 the second part of the verse says,
  • 00:21:28.190 --> 00:21:30.040
  • "He gathers the lambs in his arms."
  • 00:21:30.050 --> 00:21:32.190
  • He comforts us in the middle of our pain.
  • 00:21:32.200 --> 00:21:35.270
  • The shortest verse in all the Scriptures, one of the most
  • 00:21:35.280 --> 00:21:39.010
  • powerful verses, "Jesus wept."
  • 00:21:39.020 --> 00:21:41.150
  • Jesus wept over his friend Lazarus who died.
  • 00:21:41.160 --> 00:21:44.070
  • Even though Jesus knew he was gonna raise him from the dead,
  • 00:21:44.080 --> 00:21:46.140
  • Jesus cried because he hurt.
  • 00:21:46.150 --> 00:21:50.030
  • He hurts when his kids are hurting.
  • 00:21:50.040 --> 00:21:51.220
  • He cries when his kids are crying.
  • 00:21:51.230 --> 00:21:56.280
  • Two and half years ago, the 1st of November, I got a call from
  • 00:21:56.290 --> 00:21:59.210
  • our son Josh, and he said that he and Kelli had just come back
  • 00:21:59.220 --> 00:22:04.020
  • from their twenty-week doctor's appointment
  • 00:22:04.030 --> 00:22:07.020
  • to check on her pregnancy.
  • 00:22:07.030 --> 00:22:08.240
  • And they thought it was gonna be a routine check, but the doctors
  • 00:22:08.250 --> 00:22:11.260
  • found that our little grand baby, Jude Samuel,
  • 00:22:11.270 --> 00:22:15.120
  • had a kidney issue that was so severe.
  • 00:22:15.130 --> 00:22:19.240
  • They said that he probably would be stillborn
  • 00:22:19.250 --> 00:22:23.210
  • and when Josh told me that we jumped right in the car.
  • 00:22:23.220 --> 00:22:26.180
  • We drove as fast as we could over to his house,
  • 00:22:26.190 --> 00:22:28.160
  • and on the way I was like, "God, you know, we need you.
  • 00:22:28.170 --> 00:22:32.130
  • Give me the words to say to our son and daughter-in-law.
  • 00:22:32.140 --> 00:22:37.170
  • Give us the words to say, to be there for them, Lord.
  • 00:22:37.180 --> 00:22:40.170
  • Give us the words to say."
  • 00:22:40.180 --> 00:22:42.060
  • And I've been with so many people at the most difficult
  • 00:22:42.070 --> 00:22:44.170
  • moments of their lives and--but it was like, "God, I need you
  • 00:22:44.180 --> 00:22:48.250
  • more than ever right now."
  • 00:22:48.260 --> 00:22:50.280
  • And when we walked into the house, Josh and Kelli were in
  • 00:22:50.290 --> 00:22:54.250
  • tears and as we saw their tears we just started pouring tears,
  • 00:22:54.260 --> 00:22:58.170
  • and we just started crying uncontrollably,
  • 00:22:58.180 --> 00:23:00.100
  • and we all just held each other, and we just cried,
  • 00:23:00.110 --> 00:23:03.010
  • and we said nothing. I had no wisdom.
  • 00:23:03.020 --> 00:23:06.270
  • I was just hurting.
  • 00:23:06.280 --> 00:23:08.240
  • My heart was broken over our grandson,
  • 00:23:08.250 --> 00:23:12.190
  • Jude Samuel's diagnosis,
  • 00:23:12.200 --> 00:23:14.050
  • and then our heart was broken over seeing our son
  • 00:23:14.060 --> 00:23:19.130
  • and daughter-in-law crying and hurting so much.
  • 00:23:19.140 --> 00:23:22.020
  • Our hearts were broken 'cause their hearts were broken, too,
  • 00:23:22.030 --> 00:23:26.140
  • and we just cried and cried and held each other.
  • 00:23:26.150 --> 00:23:29.170
  • And, you know, that's what our heavenly Father does for us,
  • 00:23:29.180 --> 00:23:32.040
  • because when his kids cry, he cries with you.
  • 00:23:32.050 --> 00:23:34.170
  • You know, Christianity is the only religion of all the world's
  • 00:23:34.180 --> 00:23:37.250
  • religions that has a God who cries.
  • 00:23:37.260 --> 00:23:39.190
  • You know that, don't you?
  • 00:23:39.200 --> 00:23:41.160
  • All the other world religions have a god who is powerful, a
  • 00:23:41.170 --> 00:23:45.070
  • god who's holy and just, a god who punishes evil, all those
  • 00:23:45.080 --> 00:23:50.160
  • things that we have in our God, but no way does their god cry
  • 00:23:50.170 --> 00:23:58.070
  • or show weakness.
  • 00:23:58.080 --> 00:24:01.120
  • No way does their god run and pick up a prodigal son
  • 00:24:01.130 --> 00:24:07.050
  • and hold them close and cry and weep.
  • 00:24:07.060 --> 00:24:10.150
  • That's what our God does.
  • 00:24:10.160 --> 00:24:11.270
  • He cries when his kids cry.
  • 00:24:11.280 --> 00:24:13.150
  • When your heart's broken, if your heart is broken today,
  • 00:24:13.160 --> 00:24:15.200
  • his heart is broken with you.
  • 00:24:15.210 --> 00:24:17.100
  • When you've made a mess of everything and then extreme
  • 00:24:17.110 --> 00:24:20.160
  • failure, he gets right into your mess, and he holds you,
  • 00:24:20.170 --> 00:24:24.030
  • and he cries with you, and he hurts with you.
  • 00:24:24.040 --> 00:24:27.020
  • That's the kind of God we have.
  • 00:24:27.030 --> 00:24:28.270
  • We have a God who cares about us,
  • 00:24:28.280 --> 00:24:30.170
  • we have a God who cries with us,
  • 00:24:30.180 --> 00:24:33.160
  • but then I want you to see we have a God
  • 00:24:33.170 --> 00:24:35.180
  • who will carry you.
  • 00:24:35.190 --> 00:24:37.100
  • You see, not only does he care,
  • 00:24:37.110 --> 00:24:38.200
  • he has the power to get us through the adversity.
  • 00:24:38.210 --> 00:24:41.170
  • In Isaiah 40:11, last part of the verse, he says that
  • 00:24:41.180 --> 00:24:44.280
  • "he takes the lambs in his arm, and he carries them close
  • 00:24:44.290 --> 00:24:48.100
  • to his heart," and so when you're going through adversity
  • 00:24:48.110 --> 00:24:51.080
  • he has the strong arms to carry you.
  • 00:24:51.090 --> 00:24:53.040
  • When you can't go any farther, that's okay.
  • 00:24:53.050 --> 00:24:55.020
  • He'll carry you, and he'll get you through it.
  • 00:24:55.030 --> 00:24:58.010
  • I want you to look again in Isaiah 40, because Isaiah says
  • 00:24:58.020 --> 00:25:01.110
  • you have a Shepherd who loves you, cares, who cries with you,
  • 00:25:01.120 --> 00:25:04.130
  • who loves you so much, but you need to know he doesn't just
  • 00:25:04.140 --> 00:25:07.000
  • care about you and cry with you and feel with you.
  • 00:25:07.010 --> 00:25:11.210
  • He has the strength and the power to get you through it,
  • 00:25:11.220 --> 00:25:15.040
  • and he will not let you down.
  • 00:25:15.050 --> 00:25:17.010
  • He will get you through it.
  • 00:25:17.020 --> 00:25:19.110
  • 00:25:19.120 --> 00:25:28.180
  • Chris Shook: We're so glad that you joined us
  • 00:25:28.260 --> 00:25:30.050
  • for the message today and hope that it impacts
  • 00:25:30.060 --> 00:25:32.070
  • your life all week long.
  • 00:25:32.080 --> 00:25:34.120
  • Kerry: And Chris, I know that there's many out there
  • 00:25:34.130 --> 00:25:37.060
  • who have never received Christ, and all you have to do
  • 00:25:37.070 --> 00:25:40.020
  • is just pray and ask for his salvation, and say,
  • 00:25:40.030 --> 00:25:43.150
  • "Jesus Christ, forgive me of all my sins.
  • 00:25:43.160 --> 00:25:45.190
  • Come into my life, be the Lord of my life.
  • 00:25:45.200 --> 00:25:47.240
  • I accept your free gift of salvation and heaven one day."
  • 00:25:47.250 --> 00:25:51.220
  • And if you pray that prayer, Christ will come into your life
  • 00:25:51.230 --> 00:25:54.120
  • and he'll never leave you.
  • 00:25:54.130 --> 00:25:56.140
  • announcer: The key to living an effective, fulfilling,
  • 00:25:56.150 --> 00:25:59.280
  • productive life is not increasing your ability
  • 00:25:59.290 --> 00:26:03.030
  • to multitask.
  • 00:26:03.040 --> 00:26:04.150
  • On the contrary, the missing ingredient is focus.
  • 00:26:04.160 --> 00:26:08.060
  • In fact, choosing to narrow your focus on God
  • 00:26:08.070 --> 00:26:11.280
  • is the very thing that will broaden your life.
  • 00:26:11.290 --> 00:26:15.100
  • It's through prayer and devotion that God is able to energize you
  • 00:26:15.110 --> 00:26:19.100
  • with the power and desire to do his will.
  • 00:26:19.110 --> 00:26:23.090
  • Are you making time to meet privately with God
  • 00:26:23.100 --> 00:26:26.120
  • and seek his direction?
  • 00:26:26.130 --> 00:26:28.140
  • Today, as a special thank you we wanna send you some very
  • 00:26:28.150 --> 00:26:31.290
  • practical resources to help you develop the spiritual habit
  • 00:26:32.000 --> 00:26:35.230
  • of spending time with God daily.
  • 00:26:35.240 --> 00:26:38.150
  • For your best gift of support receive Pastor Kerry Shook's
  • 00:26:38.160 --> 00:26:41.290
  • 30-day devotional, "God First," along with digital access
  • 00:26:42.000 --> 00:26:46.030
  • to his powerful 4-part message series, "Simplify and Soar."
  • 00:26:46.040 --> 00:26:50.270
  • To receive today's special offer and keep this kind of teaching
  • 00:26:50.280 --> 00:26:54.080
  • coming to you and others, call us now at 844-34-KERRY
  • 00:26:54.090 --> 00:27:00.040
  • or visit us online at KerryShook.org.
  • 00:27:00.050 --> 00:27:03.160
  • Commit to spending time with God
  • 00:27:03.170 --> 00:27:06.010
  • so that you can soar to new heights.
  • 00:27:06.020 --> 00:27:10.080
  • 00:27:10.090 --> 00:27:20.080
  • 00:27:20.090 --> 00:27:28.280