LiveSent: How to Get Unstuck

Transformed people bless others, train others, and live sent.

We can all get stuck on the “other side” of the table, living just for ourselves. Our faith becomes all about ourselves. We talk about churches like we talk about restaurants: “This is how well they served me.”

So how do we get unstuck from living for self? We live a sent life. We make our lives about serving others.

Why 12Stone is Here

The name 12Stone serves as a reminder of the rescuing hand of Jesus.

We were all in desperate need of rescue. We were separated from God for all of eternity because of sin. But God sent Jesus to rescue us because he doesn’t want to see us separated from him.

John 17:18 says:

“Father, as you sent me into the world, I have sent them (my disciples) into the world.”

12Stone exists to join Jesus in rescuing those who are near us but far from God.

Live Better Than Living for Self; Live Sent

We can live for ourselves or live sent by God. Living for one’s self leads to a broken and empty life, while living sent by God leads to a blessed and fulfilled life.

Paul’s life is a prime example of how God transforms lives from living for self and living sent. God first rescued Paul from his selfish life, transformed it, then sent Paul into the world as an apostle. This is the pattern God uses in all of our lives.

Jesus Has Already Won

We lose perspective when we lose sight of the promises of God. One promise we can forget is that Jesus has already paid the cost for sin.

God has already given us victory! So we persevere in our faith through adversity because we are saved.

Since Jesus has already won the battles, our new perspective towards adversity should be: “God, what are you trying to build in me?” not “Why is this happening to me?

Adversity Tests Perspective

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.

James 1:2-3

The original Greek translation of the word “consider” means to evaluate or gain perspective. James is telling us that overcoming adversity requires having the right perspective. In other words, our outlook on life determines our outcome.

Interview with Hasani Pettiford

Kevin interviews Hasani Pettiford, founder of Couples Academy, on how to navigate conflict within marriage. Hasani gives us key techniques that we can focus on in marriage to solve conflict:

  • Communicate effectively in what you say, how you say it, and your body language
  • Make the Bible the final authority
  • Give up the need to have to be right

 

Guiding a Family to Solve Conflict

We can resolve conflict in family by following the guidelines God models for us:

  • There is righteousness: Discuss and determine what is right, not who is right.
  • There is unrighteousness: Acknowledge what is wrong.
  • Someone has to repent: Apologize and return to what is righteous.
  • Someone has to forgive: Absorb the loss and restore the relationship.

When we let the peace of God reign, there will still be conflict, but now we have way to solve it.

Solving Conflict Within Marriage

In Ephesians 5:21-28, Paul gives a framework for marriage to work. This structure helps two people cooperate because Christ is ruling their life!

First they must let God’s peace rule in our hearts, then they are able to have a mutual respect and love for each other. Through this a married couple gains a better way of resolving conflict in marriage.

Solving Conflict Within Ourselves

Often, we over react to problems in life because we already have pressure within ourselves.

In this illustration, PK uses beachballs floating in water to show that a full beachball is much more difficult to keep down than a deflated beachball.

Here’s the point. In Colossians 3:8, Paul advises that we rid ourselves of anger, rage, etc.. (pressure) and surrender ourselves completely to Jesus. If Jesus rules us from the inside out, he removes the pressure within and any pressure we may bring into our marriages and families.

 

Create a “Closed For Business” Sign For Your Family

Work is important, but it’s only one of the important things in life. We need to find a way to be “closed for business” for our families.

This means putting limits to work so you can do family and limits to family so you can do work.

Kevin and Marcia navigated this conflict in time between work and family by setting some rules:

  • Quitting: “closed for business” at certain times of the day.
  • Interruptions: no interruptions at work.
  • Phone: no business calls when at home.

These rules help keep both family and work important. When someone is “on”, they’re fully on. When someone is “off”, they’re fully off.

Busyness Can Crowd Out the Important

In this illustration, each of the containers represents the time in our life.

  • The sand represents the busy lesser things in life – emails, social media, Netflix, etc…
  • The little stones represent the stuff that needs to get done, but if they don’t, it’s okay.
  • The big rocks that are most important in our life; prayer, family, careers, marriages, etc..

When we fill our calendars with lesser things first, we don’t have enough time left for all the sacred things. But when we put sacred things on the calendar first, everything can fit!

 

Your Calendar Always Reflects Your World View

Our worldview defines how we view time and use time. What this means is we manage our time based on our priorities.

We learn from Jesus’ life that he managed his time on Earth based on an eternal agenda and purpose, not just his life on Earth.

When we don’t focus on the eternal, we don’t understand time or how to properly manage it. Jesus would say we are actually wasting our lives! The world tells us that we waste our lives by prioritizing God, but God tells us the exact opposite.

Prioritizing God leads us to being renewed in His image and allowing us to adopt a new view on life.

Gumption is a Sacred Family Value

Gumption is the character to commit and complete. It’s the essence of self-leadership in requiring something of yourself without excuse.

Everything worthwhile is an uphill battle. Luckily, God has given us the necessary gifts, talents, and abilities to win. We only need to exercise gumption to get the better life God has invited us to.

And when we succeed, we celebrate!

Striving to be Authentic

In our families, we’re never going to be perfect, but we can strive to be authentic.

Being authentic means to have consistency between what we say we value and what we practice.

For example, when we say, “God is our sovereign source of life, and the one on whom we depend,” we need to live it. We can do this by finding our significance and security from God and not in others. When we trust others to fill the void, they will eventually fail. We need to look to God and lean on Him for emotional wholeness.

Valuing Family Togetherness

God designed families to stick together.

In marriage, we die to our single life in order to look forward to being together. This means that time together becomes the default, rather than time apart.

When Kevin and Marcia got married, their single lives had to die. They made “together” a sacred value in their family. Every effort has been made to form their family to be together as a default habit.

How Families Can Withstand Pressure

Two different families may come from the same mold, but we won’t know the difference between the two until pressure is applied; job, finance, emotional, psychological. Once the pressure comes there is no amount of skill or training that can compensate for being hollow – it all falls apart.

If families are built from the inside out, they can sustain pressure from the outside in.

The Truth About Peace with God

Using the parable of the Prodigal Son, Jesus separates the tradition about God from the truth about God.

In the middle eastern culture of Jesus’ day, if a son returned home after messing up life, he would be kept at arms length peace. He’s kept at a distance. This was tradition.

But here’s what true about our Heavenly Father, when we return to Him, he gives us arms around peace. God offers us complete forgiveness of sin through Jesus. When we get this idea that we are a second class citizen held at arms length from God, that’s a tradition that is not true. In fact – it’s an outright lie.

What is Actually True About the Nativity Scene

What are some of the traditions of the Nativity scene versus what actually happened at the Nativity?

What we know to be true is Jesus was born of the virgin Mary. He was God in human flesh. God left Heaven, took on human flesh, and lived with us. He lived a sinless life and then volunteered to be crucified for all of our sins.

This is the point of Christmas, so that we may have peace here on Earth.

Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth PEACE to those on whom his favor rests.

Luke 2:14 (NIV)

 

 

How Many Souls are “Good Enough” for God?

Sometimes we get distracted in the activity of life and get wrapped up in a material world. This causes us to lose sight of the greatest good.

As Christians we should always re-engage our passion. Our true purpose is to continually reach out into the community of spiritually lost people.